Today’s video is brought to you by NAU Drinks. I’m really happy the guys over at NAU reached out to me as I’m trying to cut down on energy drinks. NAU Drinks a focus drink designed for gamers. It boosts your concentration and makes you more alert but without any of the harmful ingredients that other gaming drinks have like caffeine and taurine which makes it a really great alternative to energy drinks. I actually really like this drink and I’m starting to favor it over coffee or other energy drinks at this point mostly because it makes me less jittery and there are a variety of tastes to keep it fresh. So by clicking on the link in the description you can buy one big bag and get one for free as well as you can get a 10% discount on everything else with the code is on. Pikachu has always been one of the better fighters throughout the years. He’s always been mobile, quick, small-sized, and hard to hit. He has an amazing recovery, a very flexible disadvantage state, a crazy combo game, and a frustrating ledge trapping game. His neutral can be played in two ways: either defensive and heavily bait and punish based, or hyper-aggressive and rushdown based, overwhelming the opponent with quick attacks and multi-hit mix-ups. His biggest strength is his ability to edgeguard in a multitude of ways and the amount of options that he can cover while being able to go extremely deep. It’s not only a strength but also somewhat of a necessity in a lot of cases at high-level for Pikachu to be successful at edgeguarding, mostly because Pikachu’s one of the lightest characters in the game and avoiding trades or potential rage comebacks is really important. His aerials, while potentially overwhelming, are still low-ranged and can suffer against longer disjoints. They also last for a while, so whiffing can sometimes give a close-range opponent more than enough time to try punishing. However, all in all, most the time Pikachu is a low-risk, high-reward character with a steep learning curve that will greatly reward the trainer that chooses him and constantly trains with him. Typically in neutral, you’ll be focusing on using Thunder Jolt to condition the opponent and controlling the pace of the game. And, as mentioned before, there are two ways that you can use these tools: defensively and aggressively. And it’s important that you use both as well as you know how and when to transition into the aggressive Thunder Jolt. The most important thing is understanding how to execute the Thunder jolt correctly You’ll want to full hop and buffer the Thunder Jolt which can be done easier by pressing a shoulder button to jump and the B button together, and you’ll know that you’re doing it right when you can double jump before you’ve landed. For defensive purposes, this will allow you to do another immediate double jump Thunder Jolt, and, for aggressive purposes, we’ll get a ton of options that open up for you. For example, at close range, because you haven’t landed yet, you can do an aerial just before you land. Or, choose to double jump and do an aerial as well for mix-ups. However, keep in mind that the close-range Thunder Jolts aren’t safe, so it’s usually best to do it defensively if you’re close up. Or, dash away first, then do a jump B-reversed buffered Thunder Jolt. The aggressive Thunder Jolt is instead at its best if you’re distanced and a bit further away in which case you’ll want to buffer the Thunder Jolt as you jump forward and then dash as soon as you hit the ground so that you run in together with the jolt, allowing for a ton of mix-ups and will basically put you at a huge advantage. If the opponent jumps over the jolt you’ll be able to easily anti-air with any aerial as well as if they shield it, you’ll be able to grab them, and they won’t be able to jump or do anything after they have blocked the jolts since they are locked in shield. The only thing to adjust to is if they start rolling before the block. If you don’t execute the aggressive Thunder Jolt right, the opponent will be able to block and jump away from the attempted grab. This is why the right execution is so important. Of course, if the Thunder Jolt is about to hit, you can start a combo. And, at higher percents even kill. Another aggressive and important option is that you can also Quick Attack before you’ve landed and instead of double jumping, in which case you can do a Quick Attack either towards them and diagonally down, towards them and straight down, or towards them and diagonally away for safety. As for the rest of the neutral, he spaces his down tilt and mixes up the opponents with aerials and Quick Attack. The shield safety of his aerials are mostly dependent on the matchup and will be a big part of learning matchups in general. Understanding how to pressure a shield, as well as which out of shield options to use as you have so many to choose from. Most of the time though, you will be aiming to short hop forward air and either zone yourself back again, or try to cross them up both as a mix-up or if it’s safer against the current matchup. You could also choose to fast fall it behind them if that’s even safer. Or, you can choose to fast fall it and space it away from them, which is the least safe way but it can still be good in certain matchups. Back air is the same and how you can use it, space it, or fast fall it to get behind or as a mix-up and in front of it. And, when you land, you become really small, making you really hard to punish for some matchups as well. Either way, both the forward air and back air have six hits, which the opponents should be holding their shield upwards against to avoid getting shield poked after all the Thunder Jolts or the other stuff that they’ve already blocked. The back air, however, when fast fallen will provide a landing hit so you could have seven hits instead which is really good against people who hold their shield up as it can end up hitting their feet for a shield poke as well as it may interrupt some out of shield options. Something cool is that you can manually parry each individual hit from both aerials. Other neutral mix-ups can be a landed crossed up neutral aerial which can have maximum of four hits, a buffered down air that you either zone away with or cross up with which can also be fast falling for a second hit As well as you could also do a buffered up air to a second aerial which isn’t safe and can be punished before the second aerial comes out. As for executing the Quick Attack, you’ll mostly be doing forward on the first one and diagonally down on the second. It could be used as a long-ranged whiff punish but it’s mostly used as a mix-up approach. And, unless you do it from a bad distance or misspace it, there won’t be too many ways to punish it, and instead, the opponent will have to try their best in covering certain areas if they predict the Quick Attack. One thing to keep in mind is that you cannot Quick Attack twice in the same direction. The angles need to be at least thirty degrees apart. With a single Quick Attack, you can recover horizontally, vertically, and diagonally, then you have a vertical recovery, recovery from below the stage, horizontal recovery, and a V-shaped recovery to go below the ledge and prevent yourself from getting hit. To showcase it, here are all the angles that you can do. Sometimes, when you are really low straight below the ledge and you’ll need to go upwards with the highest amount of distance in order to do this you’ll need to go for angle 1 then -2, or 2 then −1, and so on. If you want to recover as far horizontally as possible you’ll need to go for angle 3 to 6, which is pretty easy to pull off. And finally, if you want to recover as far diagonally as possible, you’ll need to go for the 1 or 2 to 5 angle, which can be extremely hard. It’s one of the best tools in disadvantage as Pikachu can always use a double jump and Quick Attack to try getting out of trouble and land on stage, or land right on you and hit you to try starting something. It also allows Pikachu to play around ledge traps very effectively as he can double jump away and Quick Attack to either land right on top of you and back to the ledge or into the middle stage and even on a platform if there is one. All of this becomes even harder to do anything about if he’s throwing out Thunder Jolts before landing or recovering as well especially since they also wrap around platforms and so tall characters will still have to respect it from the ground. On top of this, he can wall jump then double jump and Quick Attack as well. This makes it very hard to ledge trap Pikachu, but you could always try to hit him before the Quick Attack comes out, throw out a big or long-lasting aerial to cover yourself as he tries to pass you, or full hop and try jumping over him and punish where you think he will be appearing, all of which are pretty hard to pull off. And, if he gets launched really high up and looking to stall, he could also use Skull Bash. Otherwise, it’s only used as a secondary recovery once your double jump is gone. And, if you smash the input for Skull Bash, you’ll go further than if you only hold forward and press B. Pikachu’s punish game is quite simple, but it does have its layer of depth to it. Down tilt is Pikachu’s main grounded poking tool in neutral. It can combo into dash attack or mix-up into dash grab at low percents and then around mid percents dash attack can start being shielded, so it’s better to start fishing for dash grab at that point. It’ll also set up for tech chases around 80, 90%. Up tilt at low percents can combo into itself and then sets up for up air combos which you can finish off with almost any aerial. And after the combo is over, you can try to juggle the opponent with more up airs, catch landings with forward smash, or Quick Attack for example, which, as you’ve seen, also starts a combo. Unless you hit the Quick Attack around starting percents in which case if you want to be aggressive you should prioritize getting a grab as the up tilt can be shielded and punished. Otherwise, you could shield after or dash away to reset your aggression. Something else you can do is up tilt into an up air at high percents and, if you read a double jump, you can double jump yourself in place with a Thunder to catch their jump and potentially kill. A landed forward air can combo into a grab, dash attack, forward tilt, or down tilt. But, it’s a bit inconsistent as sometimes the opponent will pop out which doesn’t allow you to combo A buffered forward air, however, at low percents and either combo to itself or a reverse up air which you can then choose to do almost anything with. But, most reliably, we’ll be going for a neutral air to drag the opponent down. The landing neutral air is Pikachu’s best combo starter from the air as it basically combos into up tilt or grab. At higher percents, it can also combo into up smash or down smash to kill. Getting it back here at low percents can lead into more back airs that drag opponents offstage, as well as you can finish it off with up airs. Then from there, it’s mostly about reading whether they will recover low or high and try covering as many options as possible. The landing head of back air can also set up for a tech situation at around 40, 50%. Down throw will be Pikachu’s main combo throw as it leads to his basic bread-and-butter combos. It’s important at this point to understand how his up pair works. If you hit with the starting or middle hitbox you’ll basically be launching the opponent upwards but there is also a late hit almost in front of Pikachu that barely launches the opponent, allowing you to combo even better. As well as you could get fancy with a pair to forward air drag downs at specific percents as well as you can full hop and time your forward air, fast fall it for a drag down, and get a re-grab. Something extremely helpful is that just as Pikachu slams the opponent that there will be a blue glow indicating where the opponent is is DI-ing. If they DI away from you, it’ll tilt away from you and if they DI in, it’ll go straight up. If they don’t DI at all, there won’t be any glow at all. This actually happens on all moves on all characters, but, on Pikachu, it shows up earlier than usual for some reason. The most busted thing about Pikachu is his neutral air loop combos. This specific combo will only work from starting percents to roughly 30% depending on the weight of the character. Either way, after the down throw you’ll want to react to the DI in which case the blue glow can be really helpful. Then, you’ll always want to short hop and slightly delay the neutral air and fast fall between the second and third hits so that you don’t get the last hit. Once you get the first neutral air, you’ll want to first try to re-grab and then start going for up tilts except against heavyweights, in which case you want to grab three to four times instead before up tilting. Then, it’s up to you and the matchup whether you want to end the combo upwards with an up tilt or down tilt. Obviously, you don’t only get this loop from a grab. You can even start it from a forward air, back air, or a simple tilt. At the same time, SDI or platforms may or may not disrupt this combo. You can, however, up throw and then full hop up air and double jump up air then start a drag down on the platform of Battlefield. Most characters won’t be able to avoid this combo. Floaty or tiny characters might be able to SDI upwards and for the rest of the cast, the best thing you can do is try to be as random as possible with DI or try to SDI behind Pikachu on the very first loop where he needs a grab. Finally, we have one of the hardest kill confirms in the game: up throw Thunder, which requires you to be frame-perfect to get. To clarify, after the up throw you have to run for exactly 7 frames and on the 8th frame, you should already turn around and jump with down B. If you are off by even one frame they’ll either an air dodge the thunder or you won’t be hitting the thunder on yourself. This combo will be extremely easy if they don’t DI at all and, if they DI behind Pikachu, it won’t work at all. If you expect the opponent to DI behind you, you can try to down throw instead which can also lead into a Thunder. And, at even higher percents, that will continue to work as long as you jump, double jump, Thunder. This combo once again is extremely hard to get and requires a ton of practice since it’s purely timing-based. It also doesn’t really work on all characters. Either way, the threat of it will definitely scare and condition the opponent. But, keep in mind that this kill confirm isn’t that necessary as Pikachu will have a ton of other ways to kill anyway. Dash attack is mostly used for killing opponents at high percents but it’s very punishable against shield. Up smash out of shield or during a tech chase can kill as well as forward smash which has long range and lingers for 15 frames and, if max spaced, can sometimes be unpunishable for some matchups. Forward tilt can kill at the ledge or set up for tech situations as well as 2-frame if you do it downwards. And, even up throw can kill at really high percents. Mostly, however, you will be finding kills offstage during the edgeguarding phase. Edgeguarding will be the biggest thing that you’ll have to learn when playing against different matchups all of which can be edgeguarded in their own way. It’s important to know how far you can go offstage and how far you can push it with aerials until you have to recover. The craziest thing is that you can go offstage to try covering low and at the same time still try to cover high with Thunder. It can also jump offstage with Thunder Jolt to cover low and then also try to cover mid-distance with Pikachu or even high recoveries. He also has a few tricks. For example, he can fall offstage with back air and the opponent will have to try teching at the right time. Or, he fast falls at the end of it as a mix-up to have the opponent pop out and air dodge if they tried teching. You can Skull Bash towards the ledge and pull down to try 2-framing. You can also try to fall with up air and connect into Thunder for a spike. And, if you’re offstage, and someone is trying to 2-frame you, then you can Skull Bash to stall and double jump in place with Thunder to hit them. If you don’t get the edgeguard you can always try to go to the other side of the stage to not risk getting reversed on. If the edgeguard seems too hard to get or if it’s too late you have an amazing ledge trapping game anyway as you can cover ledge jump really well with forward air at the same time, as it can be super effective against regular get-ups and rolls, and still be reacted to. As forward smash can also cover all options except for roll unless he spaces himself slightly back to actually try covering the roll, in which case you can safely ledge jump. He can also jump and Thunder Jolt to force the opponent to press a button at a specific timing and then go for either of the previous options as well as shield and go for back air to counter ledge roll, grab to counter a regular get up an attack, or full hop up air to catch a ledge jump. Or, you just Quick Attack where they will inevitably land Thank you guys for watching. If you want to support this channel then please consider helping me out on Patreon. There’s a lot of awesome rewards you can get, they’ll get sessions, and you’ll also be able to watch these “Art of”s way earlier than anyone else. And if you can support me on Patreon then please consider sharing these videos to your friends.