Box art - Super Smash Bros Ultimate

How to Parry in Smash Ultimate

Want to know how to parry in Smash Ultimate and really stick it to some of the pros you’re seeing online? The parry, or Smash Bros. Ultimate perfect shield as it’s also known, isn’t the easiest thing to pull off but, if you can parry in Smash Ultimate then you’ve got a one-up (not that kind) on your opponent from the get-go. Here’s how to do it.

How to Parry in Smash Ultimate

The first thing you’re going to want to know how to pull up your shield. You don’t have to get it spot-on for now, but knowing how to bring up the red bubble is step one: hold down either the L or R buttons/triggers on the JoyCon controller. It’s the same on the GameCube controller for us Melee nuts out there.

That’s the easy bit. Next, you have to time and block a basic attack (or otherwise, though some frames can be far too hard to react to) so perfectly that your character’s eyes light up and you glow, leaving your opponent in a vulnerable, frozen state for a split-second. See this video from YouTuber Lewdcina on what each character looks like after pulling off a perfect shield/parry.

To do that, you will need to hold down the shield button right before you’re attacked and then, as you’re attacked, release the shield button. It sounds impossibly hard to pull off, let alone effectively use it as part of your arsenal, but it’s doable with a few tries. Use the following tips for help:

  • Practice in Training Mode. Seriously. This is the best way to figure out the key frames in which you need to press the button for each opponent’s basic attack. After that, it’s all about the timing.
  • Don’t overuse your shield. It gets smaller and smaller if you use it in quick succession and you’ll be stunned yourself
  • While it’s not impossible to use this parry technique with some of the roster’s larger, slower characters, they won’t have anywhere near as much time to counter-attack as some of the swifter characters.