|Appearances||Super Smash Bros. Melee, Brawl, Crusade|
Falco Lombardi (ファルコ・ランバルディ, Faruko Ranbarudi) is an anthropomorphic falcon and major character in the Star Fox series. Having appeared in every Star Fox game since the franchise's debut on the SNES, he is usually shown as the wingman of the series' main protagonist Fox, and a valued member of the titular Star Fox crew. Portrayed as arrogant and overconfident, Falco is considered the most skilled pilot in the Star Fox team. He is one of the most popular characters in the series, reflected in his recurring playable appearance in the Smash series.
Changes from Brawl to Crusade
Falco is cosmetically and functionally very similar to his Brawl counterpart, but he has received some adjustments.
- Falco's initial jump height is slightly lower than in Brawl, though still one of the highest in the game.
- Falco's midair jump height is slightly higher.
- Falco's grounded Blaster (Neutral Special) frames have been adjusted to match those of Melee Falco's.
- Jab has been changed to Melee Falco's Jab.
- Forward Tilt has a new animation, where Falco does a crescent kick-like attack.
- Neutral Aerial has a new animtation, but does similar knockback, damage, and number of hits.
- Forward Aerial has been changed from a spinning beak attack to a slow, hard-hitting axe kick.
- Up Aerial deals more damage and is easier to hit with.
- Forward Throw now does an axe kick that does moderate 45% knockback.
- Reflector (Down Special) is now jump-cancelable on hit.
- Final Smash is now Arwing, which works similarly to Yoshi's Fire Dragon.
Falco is gifted with a diverse moveset featuring quick attacks, great follow-up ability, capable finishers, one of the highest initial jumps in the game, and a fantastic projectile. Outside of his forward aerial, all of his aerials cancel quickly upon landing, including his down aerial. Falco's blaster has great range, transcendent priority, and decent speed. The ending lag of aerial blaster shots also cancel quickly upon landing. This gives him an incredible ability to approach or shutdown approaches, as short-hopped Blaster cancels can be immediately chained into many of Falco's other attacks at close or mid range. Although he has a great camping game, he also has a very good close-range game. He has a very fast jab which is can be used to rack up damage or set up for a grab, and his spot dodge is one of the fastest in the game. Falco can also bolster his approach with his dash attack, a quick, strong move that is difficult to defend against. Falco has the ability to safely approach and defend using his now jump-cancelable Reflector, which can go through walls and also has the ability to easily reflect projectiles that are typically tough to reflect, such as Pikachu's Thunder. It can also be used in conjunction with his blaster to safely disrupt recovering opponents from a distance.
For finishing moves, one of Falco's lackluster areas, Falco can use his forward and up smashes to good effect, though his forward smash is slow and is weak in the tip (although it has a fast charge release, has fairly long range and the hitbox lasts some frames with the weak hitbox being during the last frames). His up smash has strong, purely vertical knockback if it hits during the upswing of his kick. The hitboxes of the latter portion of Falco's up smash have little knockback and cannot KO below 200%. However, at high percentages, it acts as a somewhat effective semispike, which can prove fatal to opponents with poor recoveries. Falco is also armed with a fast and powerful meteor smash in his down aerial that can KO at percentages as low as 50%. However, this move has little range with a small sweetspot and lasts a long time while in the air, which makes it dangerous to use off the edge given Falco's fast falling speed. Falco's down aerial excels at spikes near the edge and at spiking opponents above the stage, setting them up for punishment or even a different finisher as they get up from the floor.
Falco's major weaknesses lie in recovery and finish ability. Although Falco Phantasm (side special) is a decent horizontal recovery, Fire Bird (up special) has very short range and is easily edgeguarded, and its only real use is recovering from below or diagonally. His falling speed has some hindrances, such as making him a candidate for extended juggle combos. Although planking can pose a problem for Falco, this issue is ameliorated in the tournament scene where it's usually limited or banned altogether. The main causes of Falco's poor finish ability stem not from a lack of KO moves, but rather his difficulty in landing them, particularly against quick, mobile characters, due to the fact that some of his moves used for racking up damage also happen to be his only KO moves, have poor range, and his forward smash has its aforementioned power though slow start-up and ending lag.
Other than his recovery and poor finishing ability, Falco has no critical problems. Smart, experienced Falco players can easily overcome these setbacks with his defense and adaptability.
Falco's Normal Moves
- Falco does two quick jabs, (first 2%, then 3%) then rapidly kicks. It's possible to punish this attack when guarded, but the 3-frame startup and good range make this move tough to beat.
- Falco performs a swinging crescent kick, a new move in Crusade. It's a bit slower than Fox's Side Tilt, as it has an 8-frame startup, but it has more range and has a taller hitbox. Fairly strong for a tilt, with high priority, making it a solid spacing move. 10% damage.
- Falco does a quick swipe over his head with each of his arms. This move has much less horizontal range than its previous appearance, but it has good vertical range. This makes it ideal to juggle with. It's possible to cancel a jump's grounded startup into this move, making the combo Reflector (jump cancel) -> Up Tilt possible at low damage. Deals two hits of 5% damage each.
- Falco crouches down and does a quick tail swipe. Poor range, but a fairly quick startup. This move can KO at high percentages, though it isn't as useful as it was in Melee. 12%.
- Falco spins in the air, dealing damage to those sliced by the feathers on his arms. A quick aerial with a great hitbox, this move makes a good short-hopped aerial and combo ender. Deals up to 11%.
- Falco does an axe kick that deals good knockback. It's a bit slow on startup, but this move has good range and it a decent finisher. 14%.
- Falco kicks behind himself in the air. A fast aerial (7-frame startup) with solid proority and power. It's a great spacing move in the air, though its range is shorter than previously. Still, it's a good combo ender as well as a good air-to-air. 11%.
- Falco flips sideways and kicks above himself in the air. Deals 2 separate hits, and the hits are easier to connect both with in succession than in Brawl (though not guaranteed). Decent vertical knockback, making a good finisher near the top of the stage, but overall is mostly used to finish combos near the ground. Deals up to 12% damage total.
- Falco performs a spinning drill kick, spiking enemies downwards. Quick startup (8 frames) for a strong spike, making it a good combo ender. It has a somewhat small sweet-spot hitbox, but long duration. This makes it useful near the edge but not far out from it, since Falco's high falling speed combined with the length of this move make recovery difficult. 12%.
- Falco rears back, then slashes forward with his arms. Deals high-power horizontal knockback when sweet-spotted, making it arguably Falco's most reliable finisher aside from a Dair spike. The startup speed is decent for a Smash, but not fast by any means, and it is punishable. The move carries a lot of active frames, hitting very late in its animation. Deals 17% damage at outset, and 12% later.
- Falco backflips, kicking anyone that touches his legs. A fairly quick Smash with decent power. It's slower than Fox's Up Smash, but has more range and less power while being shorter in total duration. The backswing of the kick sends opponents backwards. 15% damage.
- Falco splits and kicks on both sides of him. Quick startup and decent power, but the range is fairly short. It's the weakest of Falco's finishing moves, but its knockback is at a low angle, making recovery difficult. 14%.
- Falco swings one of his legs to the ground, hitting the grabbed enemy upwards at a 45 degree angle.
- Falco throws the enemy behind him and shoots a few shots with his blaster.
- Falco throws the enemy above him and shoots a few shots with his blaster.
- Falco places the enemy below himself and shoots a few shots with his blaster. A great combo starter. 8%.
- Falco does a dashing side kick. A quick move with strong priority, but very punishable when guarded. 9%.
- Falco gets up from the ledge and does a side kick.
Falco's Special Moves
Falco shoots lasers similar to Fox's, but it is slower. However, the enemy flinches when hit.
|Side Special||Falco Phantasm||
Falco teleports across a distance dealing damage to whoever is in the line of the move.
|Up Special||Fire Bird||
Falco first charges up, then set himself on fire and flies in the direction of which direction key is pressed.
Falco kicks his Reflector and the Reflector comes back like a boomerang. Reflector can reflect projectiles.
Falco flies up and starts riding in his Arwing. The Arwing can shoot, fly infinitely, and damage if moving towards the enemy. The Arwing can not move left or right on ground unless it's already moving.
- Star Fox (1993)
- Star Fox 64 (1997)
- Star Fox Adventures (2002)
- Star Fox: Assault (2005)