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W . o . r . l . d . . . o . f . . . S . m . a . s . h

This is a weekly thing where I make a quick rundown of each character in the game. I try to describe what the character is like and hopefully it will help people get a general feel for the character and what is all involved with that character.

But there are so many better character FAQs out there! Why bother with this?

That's not the point. Those FAQs are very long, meticulous, in-depth, and they also do not do what I want to accomplish. My weeklies are supposed to be easier to swallow and also add in other info that FAQ's don't sometimes. It's also to get a taste of each character and not to go too far in to smother someone. However, it's also meant to be comprehensive so that the reader will understand what the character is about. It is also meant to lead into being good with the character; in other words, it's supposed to be an introduction, like an introductory class in college for an undecided major. Also, if you're looking at a character and want to know more, you don't need to read a ton and go searching a ton because I've pretty much done the work for you because I even include who the masters are and also the best guides out there, not to mention a list of videos pertaining to the character.

It may end up being long but I've labelled each section so you can skip to what you actually want to read because there is some extra stuff you may not need (like background of character).

If you find yourself not understanding some terminology, you might want to go here to learn the terms.

This week's character is P i c h u, Pokémon Power

T . i . e . r . . . P . o . s . i . t . i . o . n: Last of Bottom

C . h . a . r . a . c . t . e . r . . . A . e . r . o . d . y . n . a . m . i . c: Moderate

C . h . a . r . a . c . t . e . r . . . B . a . c . k . g . r . o . u . n . d:
The Pokémon craze was starting to dwindle but it was still quite in force. After the huge success of Red, Blue, and Green versions of the game (for the Original Gameboy), a few new remakes were created and offshoots were done but it was finally time to give fans what they've been clamoring for: a sequel.
Thus, Gamefreak finally released Pokémon: Gold and Silver as the official sequels of the popular series. Expanding the world outside of Kanto, the game also expanded the number of items, moves, and most importantly Pokémon. This included several evolutions and even a few pre-evolutions, one of whom was the pre-evolution of the Pokémon Mascot, that pre-evolution being Pichu.
No one really knows why HAL decided to put Pichu into the game. Many think it is a joke character, some think it was to pad the roster. There may be another reason altogether. Most people have gotten over it, assuming they still disliked the character. Others grew to like him and joined the few that accepted him at the beginning and have kept his candle burning.

C . h . a . r . a . c . t . e . r . . . H . i . s . t . o . r . y:
Some realized it right off the bat while some didn't see it until quite some time but it was there: Pichu damaged himself with his moves and is the only character in the game who does. This is the first major turnoff for the character. Then there's the fact that he's light and short ranged, which also turned off a majority of the people still around after the first thing. Overall, the community did not take a great liking to the character. It's not hard to see why.
Some left him to rot altogether, many simply didn't take him seriously. Some, saw him as an "advanced" character, someone only meant for experts, while others took the other route and simply labeled him as a "joke character". Yet there was still a small group that refused to believe HAL would purposely make a character bad and set out to find Pichu's true hidden potential.
Yet, like Kirby, it seems HAL purposely designed Pichu with a handicap, for whatever reason. He now sits at the very bottom of the tier list. He may be destined for the lower portion of the tier list but there is still work on improving his position, at least above Mewtwo, into Low Tier. Some still say that he is underrated; it's up for debate whether this effects his tier position but it is undeniable that he is indeed underrated by the vast majority of the smash community. Now all Pichu needs is a kick ass video or a Pichu version of "Bowser's not as bad as you think".

C . h . a . r . a . c . t . e . r . . . D . e . s . c . r . i . p . t . i . o . n: Small, fast, nimble; problems are - OH MAN HE'S SO CUTE!
The first thing many people think of when thinking of Pichu is "self damage". Indeed, he does deal himself damage; all of his electric attacks in addition to his B attacks. Luckily, these moves are all situational to a certain degree.
As can been seen off the bat, Pichu is very small, fast, and nimble, allowing for maneuverability and dogding. Unfortunatly, he is also very short of range. He is among the worst grabbers as far as range is concerned and a great majority of the characters outrange him.
He does, however, have decent priority, particularly in his upward attacks. His uair out prioritizes Jiggly's down air and equals with Falco's dair. Particularly on fast fallers, this is a useful part of his game.
He unfortunatly, also has a terrible ledge recovery game. Ledge attacks, ledge rolls, ledge jumps; they're all among the worst, if not the worst, in the game. He can make it up with ledge jump'd attacks but even those pale in comparison to many other character's ledge jump moves.
Pichu tends to lean toward a more conservative playstyle, due to his light weight, short range, and self damage. It is possible to play more offensively but it takes a very skilled player to do such since Pichu's approach can be punished more easily and to a greater degree than with other characters due to his short range and weight. He also can't abuse certain moves, like thunder shock due to self damage, as much as other characters can.
As with other characters near the bottom of the tier list, Pichu has his own set of "Pichu tricks" that have resulted from the backlash, including the B+Up 1 frame special lag and wall chain grab. Unfortunatly, they usually involve damaging himself so they have to be used somewhat conservatively.

M . a . s . t . e . r . i . n . g . . . D . i . f . f . i . c . u . l . t . y: Moderate
Pichu's game isn't overly technical. The toughest part about him is really his B+Up but it is actually easier to handle than Pikachu's due to slower speed. He is faster than many so nailing those short hops can be somewhat of a pain although not as much as some other characters. Knowing when to use what move can become important since he has less leeway than many of the characters in the game, especially with self damage. Overall, though, not the hardest character to learn in the game.

C . o . m . b . o . . . A . b . i . l . i . t . y: Great
He is fast, many of his moves have low knockback and he has little lag in many of his moves. He is especially good at juggling, which is a problem with floaty characters but can be quite helpful against the heavier and faster falling characters.

R . e . c . o . v . e . r . a . b . i . l . i . t . y: Good
His recovery game is pretty much Pikachu's except a little worse. He still has most of the unpredictability in his B+Up (although it is a little slower) but it doesn't hit opponents, which is usually bad but can be occasionally useful when you can't avoid getting around the oppoenent and you want to avoid giving them their 3rd jump back. It does, however, include a 1 frame special landing lag that Pikachu lacks, which happens when the B+Up ends very close to the ground, which is quite useful as one may see.
Of course, the real blow to his recovery is the fact that it adds insult to injury by damaging himself. The skull bash does 1% and the first jump of the quick attack does 1% while the 2nd does an extra amazing 3%. For a character that can normally be KO'd at 60%, this doesn't seem all that fair but whatever.

K . i . l . l . . . F . a . c . t . o . r: Good
HAL has a way of hiding power behind seemingly fragile people. Jigglypuff, Zelda, and Peach all fall under this category and so does Pichu. He has pretty good edgeguarding, being able to kill a fast faller at 20% or less with a well placed FSmash. His Dsmash is also good at "spiking" the opponent, better since it hits the opponent in the opposite direction so getting them to the edge isn't as big of a problem. His dtilt is also very useful (and outranges his DSmash). His nair and bair are also decent killers, particularly at middle-high to high percentages. Another nice killer is dair, which unfortunatly hits in two parts with the sweetspot being on the first hit so it's really only good at killing at higher percentages. However, he also has a very nice up killer: his UpSmash. It is the 6th strongest upsmash in the game, which says a lot. Very nice since it can be chained in from a variety of attacks.

K . e . y . . . T . a . c . t . i . c . s:
Playing Pichu is sort of like playing soccar; there are some moves that will damage you so you have to be somewhat conservative with those.
There are a few tricks to his B+Up, including edgehog from stage and 1 frame special landing. They are outlined here.
You have to remember to make use of his speed and his maneuverability (and his size). Getting hit is dangerous for him, moreso than many characters.

. C . h . a . r . a . c . t . e . r . . . M . a . s . t . e . r . s:
Roby Extreme - He's been said to have a great Pichu. However, he doesn't get much recognition.
Supa-def aka Shou - He's the first one to have made a Pichu combo video and still plays Pichu to this day. He's greatly improved and is working on a new Pichu video and is a great proponent Pichu.
NGCXX - A great Pichu supporter and a great Pichu player. He gave folks a taste of a Pichu video in the works and also made a great Pichu guide at the smashboards.
Lord HDL - He mains Link but he also is a great Pichu player. He supports the character and has even released a couple of videos of him.

. . V . i . d . e . o . s . .:
Chain Lightning - by T0mmy
wtf_glitched by NGCXX (Pichu preview vid at the end, avaliable on the hub maybe?)
Thunderstruck by Shou (availiable on the hub)
Clash of the Clones - Pichu and Pikachu (avaliable on the hub)
Single Vids: (DC++ Setup)
Lord HDL (Pichu) VS B4k4 (Fox)
Lord HDL (Pichu) VS B4k4 (Fox) 2
Shou(Pichu)vsAK47(Falco)
Shou(Pichu)vsAK47(Marth)
Shou(Pichu)vsXCDN(Marth)
Shou vs DJ Pichu ditto
Shou(Pichu) vs DJ(Pikachu)
Shou(Pichu) vs DJ(Falco)

. . T . o . . . L . e . a . r . n . . . M . o . r . e . .:
To start off with, NGCXX's guide is here. For a different perspective, there's also The Pichu Paradigm by T0MMY. As always, go to the Pichu Board at smashboards.com for more discussion about Pichu.


Thanks and credits
Special thanks to:
jinzorob1 for all of the support and help
flyingthrough for your support and encouragement.
UnanimousPrime for your SSB Board Vet seal of approval
Enumator for your support and encouragement
Juggleguy for critiques and support
The IGN SSBB
And viewers like you

Credits:
Everyone at smashboards and smashboards in general
http://www.ssbmg.cjb.net/ for pics
http://smashboards.com/showthread.php?t=59214&page=1&pp=15 for research purposes
Juggleguy - Markups for section titles
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