VoiD Guide - Edgeguarding Your Friends
Hey everyone! This VoiD Guide will feature learning an essential part of gameplay: edgeguarding! Just like in the video, I’m going to let you all know this is one of THE HARDEST things to learn. Keep your head held high and constantly try to implement what you learn here and you’ll see improvement come in no time. Let’s get started!
Step 1: What Resources Does Your Opponent Have?
This is probably the most important part about edgeguarding. Knowing what resources your opponent has leads to positioning your character properly and knowing what’s the easiest knockback move to end their stock. Sometimes it’s something as simple as a Mario Fireball, or as difficult as a Ganon D-air. I’ll try to go over each situation to give you a brief idea of the flowcharts you can follow.
If your opponent has a double jump, you generally will have two decisions to make here: are they sinking low, or are they double jumping high? If they sink low, you have the chance to kill them with a juicy spike! If they use their double jump recklessly, you have a chance to place a high aerial to force them to now recover WITHOUT their double jump! Reacting to a double jump in the spur of the moment can be a little difficult, so make sure to position yourself near your opponent as they’re drifting inwards to make it a little easier.
If your opponent has their air dodge this can be one of the more difficult things to know how to PROPERLY punish, but it also is one of the easier things to react to. Some characters will use their air dodge as soon as they get hit offstage to help them recover (Ganon, Chrom, etc), so it’s up to you to be aware and follow them after you hit them offstage to punish this usage of air dodge. There are also players who like air dodging to the ledge, kind of like an invincible air dash. Versus this, you can do two things! One is run offstage, and double jump while placing an aerial right next to the ledge. This combined with a spike can usually end a stock! The other option doesn’t even require you to go offstage! Most characters down-smashes will cover this area perfectly so you can also do that to seal a stock. Other players also air dodge at a higher area or try to air dodge through you, and that’s a little less linear to cover. Just make sure you don’t position yourself too far offstage otherwise you’ll lose your edgeguard scenario and might end up being the one that gets edgeguarded!
Lastly if your opponent has a special move that grants them mobility, you have to play around this! The easiest example will be Little Mac’s side-special. Little Mac’s side b bursts him forward a little bit while having his hitbox out, and allows him to either act afterwards or grab the ledge during it. What I like to do in these scenarios is stay a little past the area that they can travel, and hit them with an attack once their move is over. Burning this resource is a huge deal as most characters DO NOT get this resource back and winning this interaction will lead to earlier stocks 100% of the time.
Step 2: Who is Your Opponent’s Character And How Do They Like To Recover?
Branching off from Step 1 will make this step significantly easier! If your opponent’s character has a strong vertical recovery (Lucina, King K. Rool, Chrom) then you know they’ll keep their resources until as close to the stage as possible. If your opponent has a quick side-special that puts them at the ledge (Fox, Falco, Diddy) then play at the distances that best help you punish these moves, that distance being directly between them and the stage! If your opponent’s recover is bad, then keep it basic and punish their double jumps and air dodges to ledge! The important thing about this step is knowledge of your opponent’s character, so keep that in mind.
Step 3: What Character Are You Playing, And What is Your Character’s Toolkit?
I think this is one of the parts that people struggle with the most! I also think this is one of the easiest parts to learn as it only involves your character! At the end of the day, even Little Mac can be in situations where he can edgeguard a character with an offstage side b. The best ways to break this down is does your character have good aerials to kill your opponent, along with good air mobility to reach and react to your opponent? Can you use projectiles to force your opponent to use their resources? Can you recover after threatening your opponent? Keep these questions in mind to find out what your character can do.
Step 4: Know Your Character’s Limits.
This goes pretty hand in hand with all of the previous steps. Actually, this is pretty much all of the steps combined! Knowing your character’s limits as a whole involves how far they can go when they edgeguard, when they can get the kill, with what move can they get the kill, and can they recover afterwards. Make sure to push your character as close to their limit as possible, but never going past it since you’ll end up losing your stock if so!
Bonus! Teching. Techs are when a character gets sent flying into a surface, and you press shield. What a tech does is it grants you temporary invincibility and lets your character exit hitstun and be able to move, instead of getting stage-spiked into the blast-zone. How you can use this to your advantage involves getting hit by your opponent’s recovery move and teching the stage, allowing you to punish them! The best example of this, like I said in the video, is Ganon’s up-b. This move gives you a lot of time to prepare to tech, and he has a lot of endlag that you can easily punish with moves as strong as a spike! The hardest part about teching is being aware that you have to tech, so always keep it in mind when you’re offstage.
That’s about it for this Void Guide! I tried to go as in-depth as I could, but at the end of the day edgeguarding is an experience. You’ll learn the more you put yourself out there and try to edgeguard, and even if you fail it’s a step forward to improvement. Don’t be too hard on yourself if it doesn’t come naturally, nothing ever came without a little bit of hard work. I hope everyone is enjoying these Squarespace blog posts as well! Can’t wait to write up another one of these. Take care and thanks for reading.