From his iconic debut in the Star Fox franchise to fighting with the biggest names in the Nintendo stable, Falco has been running and gunning for over 20 years and some of his best performances are in Nintendo’s premiere eSports title, Super Smash Bros Melee.
Considering the age of the game, it is no longer a secret that Falco is a “hidden” character in the sense that you cannot play with him from opening the game. The best way to unlock Falco would be to play the 100-Man Melee where you have to win 100 battles in a row without getting KO’d. Once you’ve completed this, you will be able to play with Falco in all modes.
Among all current Melee characters, Falco is ranked second in terms of overall strength in the NTSC region as of 2015. Falco is a “clone” of the number one ranked player Fox which means he shares similar moves and stats but still maintains unique differentiators. Falco’s main advantage over the competition is his speed and diverse amount of attacks. Falco can quickly move around the platform to overwhelm an opponent with blaster fire from afar and quickly move in and use a devastating down aerial spike, due to owning the highest falling speed.
Falco’s biggest strengths are arguably his weaknesses. While having a high falling speed can be very damaging to an opponent, it can also be exposed as a weakness by luring a Falco player off the platform as he’s unable to recover. One of the reasons that Falco is so fast is that he’s insanely light. While this helps him move around quicker it also can be exploited by heavier players.
In the hands of a skilled player, Falco’s positives heavily outweigh his negatives. That is one of the reasons he has no consistent negative 1v1 character match–ups based on ability. Falco’s place of second on the Tier List is well deserved and that has earned him the number two spot for most played character in competition. At the largest annual Fighting Game tournament, EVO 2016 pro player Cloud 9 MaNg0 (currently fourth on the Melee power rankings) used a combo of Falco and Fox to place in the top four. At the Smash Summit: Melee Singles, MaNg0 placed second with just Falco winning almost $6,000, and at Paragon LA he placed first with the Falco Fox duo.
Falco Lombardi has turned in some stellar performances across Nintendo titles over the past twenty years. From piloting an Arwing in Star Fox to blasting and dodging on the Melee platform, Falco has been a consistently top performer wherever he lands most recently appearing in the Nintendo Wii U’s edition of Melee. Falco’s presence in the competitive Melee scene is still very relevant due to his extensive skill-set and high speed movement.