20 Strongest Smash Bros. Characters, According To Lore

20 Strongest Smash Bros. Characters, According To Lore

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is one of the biggest media crossovers of all time. Featuring characters from across video game history all duking it out for victory, it is a wildly popular fighting game and in many ways the pinnacle of what the franchise has been building towards for decades.

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Every character who has appeared in a prior Super Smash Bros. title is playable in Ultimate, along with a handful of brand-new characters. Regardless of their home game’s lore, each of these characters is relatively balanced against one another to make Smash Bros. a fair fight. Looking back to their main game appearances, however, several fighters clearly rise above the rest in terms of power level.

Updated on May 11th, 2023 by Tom Steel: Super Smash Bros. has gained a stellar reputation over the years for raising a stacked roster, bringing in powerful characters from many different properties and franchises, and pitting them against one another. The recent release of The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom has brought eyes back onto Nintendo and the various characters that have appeared on Smash over the years. This list has been updated to honor Link and include other powerful Smash Bros. fighters according to their exploits in general lore.



20 Cloud (Final Fantasy)

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Cloud Strife is the protagonist of Final Fantasy VII, best known for his iconic hair and sword, and generally being a badass. Cloud should be remembered for his pursuit of Sephiroth, being able to keep up with and even defeat him on occasion.

Cloud’s power as a formidable swordsman with persistent will and determination has even been on show in Kingdom Hearts, where he is presented as a tough foe for Sora. Cloud is a logical choice for being one of the strongest characters in the Smash universe, as he would take pretty much anyone on and to their limit.

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Link reaching up toward the sky in The Legend of Zelda Tears of the Kingdom

Link has just returned once again in The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, for another round of being the hero of the peace. Link has even gained more new powers in the latest game, thanks to a new arm, adding more tools of versatility to his arsenal.

Link is such a storied hero, always caught up in disasters involving incarnations of Zelda and Ganon, but so often emerging victorious. Link may not be big in stature, but his will to save others pushes him forward on his many quests. Armed with powerful weapons, shields and abilities, Link could hold his own to an extent against almost anybody.

18 Sora (Kingdom Hearts)

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Sora in Super Smash Bros Ultimate

There will always be debates about who the strongest Kingdom Hearts characters are according to lore, but Sora has to be up there among the other powerful Keyblade wielders. Master Xehanort may be leagues above Sora in terms of overall power, but Sora always finds a way to will himself through dire situations.

Across all the Kingdom Hearts games, Sora has made countless friends with many of them helping out in his battles, but he is more than capable of holding his own. Sora is good with the Keyblade, and can also use various forms of a magic when in a pinch. This versatility would see Sora give anyone a good fight, especially armed with his passion and resilience.

17 Ike (Fire Emblem)

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Ike from Fire Emblem ready for action

Fire Emblem protagonists often achieve great things in their games. They go from weak and low-level fighters to slaying dragons, demons, and more. Ike, from Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance and Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn goes further than most. In the second game’s climax, he manages to beat a god in a duel.

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Even with the aid of another god, it’s an impressive feat. Ike’s prowess isn’t confined to his own game. Fire Emblem: Awakening portrays one of his descendants as one of the most powerful heroes ever to live. Fire Emblem Heroes outright confirms that Ike is seen as the mightiest hero in any world.

16 Rosalina (Mario)

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Screenshot of Rosalina flying

Rosalina may not seem too powerful on the face of it all, but she has performed feats that nobody else would deem possible. In Mario Galaxy, Rosalina and her Lumas stopped a giant black hole and a universal explosion, an impressive feat in itself. Her magic stretches to flying and creating force fields, as many see her as a Goddess figure.

Rosalina possesses all of this power, but doesn’t use it often enough to convince many of her true capabilities. In fact, Rosalina’s mysticism presents her as this all-powerful entity, but she is reduced to roles smaller than herself. Yet Rosalina’s presence and magical capabilities are vast enough to have fans wondering how powerful she truly is.

15 Samus (Metroid)

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Samus during a cutscene in Metroid Prime Remastered on Nintendo switch

Metroid‘s Samus deserves to be in any conversation about the strongest Smash Bros. characters according to lore and canon. Whether she is in the iconic Power Suit or in her Zero Suit form, Samus possesses incredible athleticism, superior DNA and stellar marksmanship, making her the ultimate fighter.

Samus has dealt with various seriously threatening foes that she has managed to defeat all by herself. Samus is a one-woman army who deserves more credit when compared to other Nintendo and Smash Bros. heroes.

14 Bowser (Mario)

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Nintendo's Bowser in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.

Bowser is Mario’s archnemesis in the Super Mario games. He’s also one of the story’s most important characters. Bowser’s far more than a generic evil overlord. He has a personality of his own, a family he adores, and more nuance than many fans expect. However, Bowser remains a villain, and one who is very dangerous when he wants to be.

Bowser has the resources of an entire kingdom at his disposal. He’s most effective when he leads armies into battle or uses their resources to build weapons of war. However, he’s also an immense physical threat. Bowser can effortlessly beat almost anyone who isn’t Mario in a straight fight. In some games, he becomes even more dangerous. Bowser often receives a magical boost or merges with another being.

13 Shulk (Xenoblade Chronicles)

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Screenshot depicting Xenoblade Chronicles' Shulk in Super Smash Bros..

Shulk quickly becomes a powerful hero in Xenoblade Chronicles. Aside from his sheer skill, this comes from his possession of the Monado. The sword aids him greatly in combat. In addition, it gives Shulk the ability to see the future. All of these make him a powerful hero.

However, Shulk rises further throughout Xenoblade Chronicles. First, it’s revealed that he’s possessed by the god Zanza. Later, Shulk actually becomes a god in his own right. However, he remakes the world without gods. At his peak, he’s as powerful as anyone in Super Smash Bros. However, he deliberately lowers his own power. Even then, Shulk’s more than capable.

12 Steve & Alex (Minecraft)

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Steve and Alex outside an NPC village in Minecraft

The power of Minecraft‘s main characters is more subtle than some other video game protagonists. They are mortal and generally bound by the limitations of their world. As any veteran Minecraft player knows, these limitations become negligible in late-game play.

Farms of all kinds generate infinite resources, monsters become trivial in the face of enchanted armor and weapons, and they can reshape every inch of the landscape. Steve and Alex may not be throwing around huge spells or psychic powers. This doesn’t stop them from being the quiet masters of the Minecraft universe.

11 Mega Man (Mega Man)

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Mega Man throwing a metal saw blade in Super Smash Bros.

Mega Man combines the versatility of robot physiology with above-average cunning. He boasts superhuman speed, reflexes, strength, and durability, as well as the powerful Mega Buster. This is an arm-mounted cannon capable of firing solar energy bullets in rapid-fire or charged blast modes.

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Mega Man’s most powerful ability, fusing with other robots to access their powers, was introduced in Mega Man 6. He’s capable of becoming much more powerful the more foes he fights. Towards the end of a Mega Man game, few can match the title character’s versatility or raw strength.

10 Sonic (Sonic The Hedgehog)

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Sonic taunting in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

Sonic the Hedgehog‘s titular character has one main ability, his speed. However, he shows just how powerful that can be. In his own series, Sonic faces down many foes with nothing more than the ability to run fast. Sonic’s enemies range from regular humans like Dr. Robotnik to the near-godlike Perfect Chaos.

Sonic’s speed is inconsistent. Nonetheless, it’s enough to dodge bullets and lasers with ease. In more extreme stories, he can even reach or exceed the speed of light. Sonic can survive almost anything and use his speed to inflict huge amounts of damage. In Super Smash Bros. Brawl, Sonic is the only one able to weaken Tabuu ahead of the final boss fight.

9 Zelda (The Legend Of Zelda)

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>An image of Princess Zelda posing in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

Zelda is one of the three main characters of The Legend of Zelda. Like Link and Ganon, she bears one of the three Triforces and reincarnates in every possible timeline. Zelda possesses the Triforce of Wisdom, which contributes to her powerful magic.

Zelda often finds herself vulnerable in her games and needs Link to help her. However, this doesn’t mean she’s helpless. Zelda has several weaknesses, but she’s also one of the best mages in all of Hyrule. Her best showing is the open-world game Breath of the Wild, when she manages to hold Calamity Ganon at bay for over a century.

8 Bayonetta (Bayonetta)

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Bayonetta brandishing her pistols in Super Smash Bros Ultimate

Bayonetta is a witch who was born into scandal and trapped away in a coffin for 500 years. She regularly battles wizards vying to end the world, hordes of angels, and a host of other supernatural enemies. Bayonetta can slow time, shapeshift into different animals, and use her signature hair to tear enemies to pieces.

Bayonetta’s strength in Smash Bros. reflects her immense power in her own game. She’s battled foes far beyond most other characters with her powerful magic. At her most powerful, Bayonetta can summon demons from Inferno to level anything that stands in her way.

7 Joker (Persona)

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Joker summoning his Persona in Super Smash Bros Ultimate

Lots of characters in the Persona series are incredibly powerful, so the baseline is that much higher. The protagonist of hit JRPG Persona 5, commonly known as Joker, has access to several powerful spirits thanks to his Wild Card abilities.

Among these are several deities from real-world religions, including the Norse Odin, the Hindu Vishnu, and the Babylonian Ishtar. A boarding school student with access to a cross-pantheon roster of gods is a terrifying prospect. As a result, Joker is one of the most powerful characters in Smash Bros. Ultimate.

6 Sephiroth (Final Fantasy)

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Sephiroth burning Midgar in Final Fantasy VII game

Final Fantasy VII‘s Sephiroth is the result of the Shinra Company’s experiments with Jenova cells. He has huge amounts of raw power, only sharpened by his Shinra SOLDIER training. After being exposed to the Lifestream, Sephiroth became obsessed with ascending to godhood. He then used his significant powers to build towards this apotheosis.

Sephiroth is an accomplished Materia magic user. He can even perform magical deeds without access to Materia. Even without his magical powers, he has extreme superhuman speed and durability. Sephiroth comes very close to destroying the world with Meteor. Few Final Fantasy villains match Sephiroth for power.

5 Mewtwo (Pokémon)

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Mewtwo floating in space in Pokemon

The Pokémon series is famous for having somewhat mismatched power levels. All Pokémon, from the lowly Bidoof to the literally godly Arceus, use the same mechanics, moves, and level system. Nonetheless, its lore clearly states some Pokémon to be more powerful than others.

Mewtwo may not be the most powerful Pokémon out there. Yet the fact that it can reasonably stand toe-to-toe with the creator deities of its universe still demonstrates its immense strength. Between intense psychic powers and significant physical prowess, Mewtwo is a force to be reckoned with.

4 Ganondorf (The Legend Of Zelda)

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Ganondorf casting evil magic in Super Smash Bros

Any given iteration of Ganondorf could be considered powerful enough on his own. However, his strength really becomes apparent when looked at as a whole. The Ganondorf who appears in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is just one incarnation of a powerful and seemingly eternal spirit of hatred and corruption.

RELATED: 10 Most Iconic Legend Of Zelda Villains

Ganondorf appears time and time again to threaten Hyrule. He’s impossible to stop for good. He menaces the world across three timelines and reincarnates after every death. Ganondorf gets one of his most powerful showings in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and returns once again in Tears of the Kingdom. Even outside of that, he’s a near-apocalyptic threat.

3 Palutena (Kid Icarus)

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>The goddess Palutena from Kid Icarus game

Palutena is the patron deity of Kid Icarus protagonist Pit. She’s a god with all the power of divinity. Palutena can bestow upon her champion a wide range of abilities, including flight and transformation. For the most part, she uses her powers defensively and to support allies.

Nonetheless, Palutena demonstrates her offensive abilities when possessed by the Chaos Kin in Kid Icarus: Uprising. There, she shows off a variety of divine blasts, as well as the ability to conjure holy allies to fight at her side. Uprising makes it very clear how powerful a goddess can be.

2 Ness (EarthBound)

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Ness leading his team in Earthbound game

While just a child, Ness demonstrates the ability to go head-to-head with astoundingly powerful beings from beyond. Most notably, he can fight the Universal Cosmic Destroyer, Giygas. Ness knows several powerful spells. His abilities include teleportation, hypnosis, healing, and even instant death.

All this pales in comparison to Ness’s ultimate fate. He becomes semi-omniscient after merging his consciousness with the entire universe. Ness effectively becomes a god in his own right. This puts him well above most of his competitors in Super Smash Bros.

1 Kirby (Kirby)

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Kirby slashing with a sword in Super Smash Bros

Kirby’s strength lies in his versatility and in the incredible strength of those around him. By inhaling, swallowing, and absorbing his enemies, Kirby can assimilate their powers and gain a huge variety of abilities.

Almost nothing in the Kirby games can withstand his signature moves. Kirby regularly faces off against incredibly powerful beings like the cosmic conqueror Magolor and the interstellar Meta Knight. He’s able to survive almost anything that’s thrown at him. Kirby’s swallowing powers are comparable to a black hole in their sheer strength.

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