Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Character Profiles: Joker

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate has arrived and everyone is here! Shacknews' Ultimate Character Profiles continue with the highly-anticipated DLC character from Persona 5, Joker.

2

The Super Smash Bros. series has seen Nintendo's most recognizable names do battle for the past two decades. The culmination of this concept came in December with the release of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate on the Nintendo Switch. Everyone is back, from Nintendo's top mascots to a handful of big-name third-party characters. That includes some characters who are joining the fight for the first time.

The game has been out in the wild for several months, but with so many characters to choose from, Shacknews remains committed to taking a look at each and every one of the Super Smash Bros. Ultimate characters individually.

The final version is in the consumer hands, but these profiles should still not be considered final and can be updated at any time. Any guide that has been updated will be clearly marked.

Here's what we have up so far:
#01 - Mario
#02 - Donkey Kong
#03 - Link
#04 - Samus
#05 - Yoshi
#06 - Kirby (Updated 9/8/18)
#07 - Fox
#08 - Pikachu
#09 - Luigi
#10 - Ness
#11 - Captain Falcon
#13 - Peach
#15 - Ice Climbers
#16 - Sheik
#17 - Zelda
#19 - Pichu
#21 - Marth
#23 - Ganondorf
#24 - Mewtwo
#27 - Meta Knight
#28 - Pit
#30 - Wario
#31 - Snake
#32 - Ike
#33, #34, #35 - Pokemon Trainer
#38 - Sonic (Updated 9/3/18)
#39 - King Dedede
#40 - Olimar
#42 - R.O.B.
#44 - Wolf
#45 - Villager
#46 - Mega Man
#49 - Little Mac
#55 - Pac-Man
#56 - Robin
#60 - Ryu
#61 - Cloud
#62 - Corrin
#63 - Bayonetta (Updated 1/11/19)
#64 - Inkling (Updated 12/15/18)
#65 - Ridley
#67 - King K. Rool
#70 - Piranha Plant

Our breakdowns continue with... well... you know where we had to go next.

Who is Joker?

The main protagonist for Persona 5 has no name, yet he has many names. To his colleagues in the Phantom Thieves of Hearts, he is known as Joker. The Phantom Thieves' mission is to steal the hearts of evil adults, leading to a reformed society. Essentially, they're rebels who rage against the system.

A juvenile delinquent by day and a thief by night, the protagonist undergoes a personality change when in his Joker persona. He's daring and confident, even in the face of danger. Having faced down dozens of armed police officers during his many heists, taking on a few fighters in the world of Smash Bros. should be a piece of cake.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate - Joker

Joker's Moves and Fighter Overview

Joker is a light character, but just as in Persona 5, he brings a lot of agility to the table. He also brings a new mechanic called Rebellion Gauge. This does not work the same way as Cloud's Limit, at least not exactly. Joker can fill his Rebellion Gauge with the aid of his Down Special, as well as by taking damage. The meter will also fill up gradually if Joker is playing from behind, meaning he's a comeback character by design.

Here are Joker's special moves:

  • Gun (Neutral B): Joker fires off his gun for minor damage. It can be fired multiple times by holding down the B button and can pass through multiple opponents.
  • Grappling Hook (Up B): Joker fires off a grappling hook at an angle. It can tether onto platforms to help with recovery, but be careful, because the reach isn't as long as you'd think. It can also pull opponents towards you.
  • Eiha (Side B): A fireball strikes an opponent for minor damage, though it does slight damage over time for a brief period.
  • Rebellion Gauge (Down B): Joker fills his Rebellion Gauge while this move is active. His damage will be halved during this move's duration.

But wait, there's more! If Joker's Rebellion Gauge fills up all the way, he automatically deploys Arsene, his Persona. On top of giving his moves an extra punch, Arsene also enhances Joker's specials. They then become:

  • Gun Special (Neutral B): Joker fires off multiple shots at once for greater damage.
  • Wings of Rebellion (Up B): This causes no damage, but gets much greater recovery distance than the Grappling Hook. Joker is also invulnerable during this move's startup, meaning he'll often get a chance to recover without resistance.
  • Eigaon (Side B): Joker's Side Special is much more dangerous, firing off faster, hitting for a wider area of effect, hitting multiple times, and dealing greater damage over time. On top of that, it can also KO at high percentages.
  • Tetrakarn/Makarakarn (Down B): Joker gets the most potent counter move in the game. If struck by a physical blow, Tetrakarn will hit the opponent back for greater damage. If struck by a projectile, Makarakarn will reflect it back, also delivering greater damage.
  • All-Out Attack (Final Smash): Regardless of whether Arsene is out or not, Joker can deliver this Final Smash that calls upon the Phantom Thieves. The Thieves all hit for heavy damage and if the opponent is at over 115%, this move is an instant KO. If you're in a Stock or Stamina battle, it is possible to hit this move and immediately transition to the victory screen. Now that's cool!

Don't overestimate Joker's agility. He may be able to move fast, but he doesn't quite have the same recovery options as other fighters. Grappling Hook will only reach so far, so it's easy to self-destruct if you're playing carelessly.

As far as working on the ground, Joker's got some strong combo potential and some nice shenanigan moves. Joker's down tilt is a baseball slide lifted right out of Persona 5, able to launch his opponent upwards for some follow-up aerials. His up air is another reliable move, one that hits multiple times, culminating with a finishing kick.

Joker on his own doesn't have much in the way of KO potential. That's what Arsene is for. Focus on getting Joker's Persona out and let him take care of the heavy lifting. Arsene enhances Joker's dash attack and smash moves to such a degree that they'll potentially KO early. Joker's forward smash with Arsene is particularly obscene, able to KO at about 75% and maybe even earlier.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate - Joker

Esports Observations

It really didn't take long for the Ultimate esports scene to get started weighing in on Joker. Let's start with Melee god Juan "Hungrybox" DeBiedma, who was blown away by Joker's up-air, forward-smash, and his wavedashes, the latter of which will definitely appeal to the Melee community.

Another Melee god went much further in-depth on this character. Jason "Mew2King" Zimmerman went into full detail on Joker's individual moves and specials. That includes the dash attack, which hits multiple times. And as one would expect, he shows off Joker's power when using Arsene.

If you're looking to take full advantage of Joker's combo potential, James "VoiD" Makekau-Tyson is here to help. He'll show off Joker's full combo capabilities, which includes grab combos. He'll also note the resemblance that some of Joker's aerials may have with another air-based character: Sheik.

Last but not least, let's look at Gonzalo "ZeRo" Barrios, who patiently waited through server issues to get his hands on this character. Watch as he and top-level players Nairoby "Nario" Quezada and Hungrybox learn Joker together.


Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is out now on Nintendo Switch. We're still going through every single character, so be sure to check back in often for more profiles. For more on Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, be sure to check out our full walkthrough and guide.

Senior Editor

Ozzie has been playing video games since picking up his first NES controller at age 5. He has been into games ever since, only briefly stepping away during his college years. But he was pulled back in after spending years in QA circles for both THQ and Activision, mostly spending time helping to push forward the Guitar Hero series at its peak. Ozzie has become a big fan of platformers, puzzle games, shooters, and RPGs, just to name a few genres, but he’s also a huge sucker for anything with a good, compelling narrative behind it. Because what are video games if you can't enjoy a good story with a fresh Cherry Coke?

From The Chatty