Character Guide: Ness

Table of Contents

  • Section 1: Guide Introduction
  • Section 2: Amiibo Overview / Pros & Cons
  • Section 3: Recommended Equipment
  • Section 4: Training your Amiibo
  • Section 5: Conclusion & Credits

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Welcome to Amiibo Dojo’s Ness character guide!

To start off, I’d like to thank you for taking the time to read this guide – your support is very much appreciated.

Ness is a small-town kid and the main protagonist of the beloved game EarthBound. His ordinary looks hide his psychic PSI powers. Ness was living a normal life in the suburbs of Onett until a meteor crashed into a nearby mountain and sent him on a wild adventure. Believing in the ultimate powers of wisdom, courage, and friendship, Ness proves that some heroes come in small packages.

Take a quick moment to look around the site. Which character is most prominent? You guessed it: Ness. He’s essentially the mascot of the Amiibo Dojo, and for good reason, too: I consider him to be my “signature” character. My Ness amiibo – nicknamed Super NES – is by far the strongest in my collection, and has won several tournament championships. Needless to say, I have a ton of experience training Ness.

In this guide, I’m going to be talking about what has worked for me. I personally believe that each and every amiibo should be fed equipment, and that they should be taught to play defensively. After all, I’ve won several tournament championships with this philosophy. These beliefs will be reflected in the sections to come.

Please note: Although all of the information in this guide is 100% accurate, it may be revised in the future if there are further game updates to Super Smash Bros.


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Amiibo Overview

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Ness is one of the strongest, most efficient amiibo available. He possesses a number of threatening tools that allow him to easily overpower his opponents, the most notable of which being his amazing back throw – it’s the strongest throw in the entire game, KOing any character by 140%. He’s also got a great set of smash attacks – his forward smash is disjointed (and can be used rather haphazardly thanks to its immunity to Explosive perfect shield), and his up smash is a great “get off me” move with a lot of range. Ness has helpful special moves, too – PK Fire and PK Thunder being among the best attacks in his arsenal. The former can link into itself and rack up incredible damage very quickly, while the latter is a trump card of sorts that inflicts huge damage and knockback on its victims. This also serves as a good recovery move; the amiibo executes it perfectly and most opponents will make no attempt to gimp him.

However, Ness suffers from problems no other characters do. His recovery, in spite of its great overall utility, can be exploited by fighters with projectiles – most notably Mario and King Dedede. You see, if the ball of electricity created by PK Thunder (his up special) is hit by anything, it will fizzle out and leave Ness in freefall. Ness is also put at a slight disadvantage on stages with platforms, such as Battlefield (which is a somewhat common stage chosen for amiibo tournaments). He’ll try to use grounded PK Thunder, but the orb of lightning will be blocked by a platform, leaving him vulnerable to attack. Last but not least, Ness has some trouble against opponents equipped with Improved escapability. Foes with this bonus effect will be able to escape from Ness’ grabs so fast that he won’t have a chance to use his back throw. The mere presence of this bonus limits the use of what is otherwise his best KO option.

The Consensus

Ness is kind of a strange one. He’s absolutely incredible with proper training, but takes a long time to become strong relative to the other characters in the amiibo tier list’s S Rank. There’s an endless amount of potential within this amiibo – enough of it to win tournament championships, but it appears that I am the only one who has truly unlocked this potential so far. I hope more people take interest in training Ness, because I’d love to see others succeed with him just as I have.


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Ness – Recommended Stats & Bonuses

It’s time to begin the training process by feeding your Ness amiibo some equipment! It’s important to give your amiibo fitting stats and bonuses – if you just slap random pieces of equipment onto your amiibo, you’re gonna have a bad time. As I said before, I have a lot of experience training Ness. I’ve tried several point distributions and bonus combinations on him, and one setup in particular has worked really well. With the help of the following build, my Ness amiibo was able to win several tournament championships.

Point Distribution: +40 Attack / +40 Defense / +40 Speed

Even though Ness is sort of a lightweight character, I think it’s best to balance the allocated 120 points between attack, defense, and speed. I’ve found that extra points in mobility not only aid your amiibo’s recovery (since speed points increase jump height), they also slightly enhance its reaction time.

Bonus Combination:

  • Critical-hit capability
  • Explosive perfect shield
  • Improved escapability

Dubbed the “Rock-Paper-Scissors” setup, this is the best and most used bonus combination in the game. It’s easy to see why, too – the three bonuses work together to create a well-rounded fighter. The centerpiece here is Explosive perfect shield, which allows your amiibo to do damage just by blocking! This capability will encourage it to block attacks more often, which is a good thing. Eventually, though, opposing amiibo will take note of how often Ness is blocking, and go for grabs instead. That’s where Improved escapability comes in – your amiibo will be able to escape from grabs almost instantly! Critical-hit capability rounds out the set, so when Ness hits a foe with one of his attacks, there will be a 20% chance of that move dealing triple damage. Ouch.

My Ness amiibo may have won many tourneys with this build, but that doesn’t mean you have to use it on yours – it’s just my recommendations. If you want to explore more options for stats and bonus effects, I have an entire post on it! You can check that out by clicking here.

Ness – Recommended Custom Moves

As far as custom moves go, Ness doesn’t majorly benefit from any of them. There is one that I think is quite decent, though – Forward PSI Magnet. This alternate down special draws the magnet in front of Ness rather than around him. It also recovers more HP, and deals 9% to enemies who get caught in the force field. Again, it’s not essential, so if you don’t already have this custom move, don’t go out of your way to get it.

Please note: Many amiibo trainers like to give Ness the PK Freeze custom move, and I can see why…but if you give your amiibo this alternate neutral special, he’ll use it randomly during battle, which is not a good thing. This is because Ness’ AI is programmed to relegate PK Flash to an edgeguard, but that’s not the case with PK Freeze. I’d advise just sticking with regular old PK Flash.

One more thing before we move on – you might find that you don’t have the right pieces of equipment for your amiibo. Farming for equipment is, to be blunt, very tedious. Luckily, I have a free guide on it that should make things a bit easier for you.

Feeding your Amiibo

By now, you should know exactly what equipment you want to give to your amiibo. If you haven’t decided yet, I say just go with my recommendations (40/40/40 and Critical-hit capability / Explosive perfect shield / Improved escapability). You might be missing the proper pieces of equipment, though, and if that’s the case, take a quick look at my equipment farming guide. But if you have everything in order and are all set to begin the feeding process, let’s move on!

Start by going to Games & More, and then to the amiibo section. Scan in your Ness amiibo, and you’ll see a status screen that describes his stats, bonuses, and custom moves.

Now, I want to be sure to cover all bases here – there are three possible situations you’re in right now.

  • Your Ness amiibo is Level 1, and has no equipment.
  • Your Ness amiibo is Level 50, and has equipment, but you want to change it.
  • Your Ness amiibo is currently “vanilla” (meaning no equipment), and you want to add stats and bonuses to it.

Whichever the case here, the following feeding method will work on your amiibo. You’ll start by giving your amiibo the three bonuses you decided on earlier – if you went with my recommendation, the first pieces of equipment you’d feed to your Ness would be ones that yield the Critical-hit capability, Explosive perfect shield, and Improved escapability bonuses. If you find that you’re missing one of the bonus effects you had wanted to give your amiibo, that’s fine – just leave one slot blank, and you can feed it the missing bonus later.

Once your three bonuses are in place, you will need to round out your amiibo’s stats.  Feed it pieces of equipment that do not yield bonuses until they match up to what you want (my recommendation was 40/40/40, in case you forgot). It’s very likely, however, that your amiibo will become full before you finish feeding it. Normally, you’d have to battle your amiibo to be able to feed it more equipment, but there’s a quick workaround that was brought to light by Amiibo Trainer. If you take your full amiibo into a 1-stock match and immediately kill yourself when the game begins, you’ll be able to feed it again once the match ends. Using this method, it’s possible to have an amiibo all set with its stats and bonuses before it even levels up!

Now then, if you’ve been following this guide correctly, your amiibo should be complete with its stats, bonuses, and custom moves. If your Ness is set and ready to go, great! If not, and there’s a problem of some sort, I can help you out. Don’t be nervous: you can send an email to amiibocloud@gmail.com explaining your issue, and I’ll give you personal advice to correct it. Emailing me is free, and I don’t get annoyed by repeated messages, so you don’t need to worry about that.


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If your Ness amiibo is already level 50, and you want to improve him without resetting, please skip to Section 5. 

You know, one big thing I’ve learned about amiibo training is that, ultimately, the method you use to get your amiibo to Level 50 doesn’t matter. When I first got my Ness amiibo, I trained him to use aerials and combos (which I know now to be no-nos). But when I realized that defense and grounded play was the way to go, I spent a lot of time with Ness in an attempt to change his playstyle – and it worked! Look at him now – he’s won many tourneys and has truly proven his worth.

What I’m trying to say is, you can’t execute a specific style of training on your amiibo, and expect it to be amazing right when it reaches Level 50. It’s actually the training you execute on your amiibo after it reaches Level 50 that matters. For that reason, I don’t quite have a step-by-step guide that tells you exactly what to do – instead, I have a general training guideline and a few helpful tips for you!

Personally, I recommend you mirror match your amiibo until it reaches Level 50 (in case you don’t know, a mirror match, also known as a “ditto”, is when you play as the character that is your amiibo – in this case, you’d be playing as Ness). As you battle your amiibo, there are a few tips you should play by in order to create a good foundation for your Ness:

  • Do not jump or use aerials. I say this very often, but it utterly confuses some people. Many amiibo trainers have aerial attacks infused into their brains, but this is a major hurdle you have to overcome in order for your amiibo to become strong. You see, amiibo are very defensive, and are capable of shielding aerial moves very easily. Several tournaments have shown that amiibo who rely on air attacks are almost effortlessly beaten by grounded, defensive fighters. If you disagree, and need some convincing, head over to this post.
  • Play defensively. It’s the key to victory, and it’s what has allowed me to win multiple amiibo tournaments. As you train your amiibo, try to perfect shield its attacks and then counter with a smash attack of your own (your go-to counter smash attacks should be forward and up smash). I’ll talk about this more in Section 5, but the whole ‘perfect shield and counter with smash attack’ concept is absolutely essential for your amiibo to master. Want more information on why defense is the best? Click here.
  • Use grabs a lot. It’s actually quite important in the amiibo metagame, especially since Ness has his amazing back throw. When grabbing your amiibo, instantly use back throw, no matter where you are on the stage. Don’t use any other throw.
  • Don’t focus on combos. Even without equipment, amiibo do 50% more damage and knockback than a regular player, so combos that work for you might not work for your amiibo. Your Ness will try to use down throw to forward aerial, but will often fail because his victim won’t be in range. Your focus should be defense and countering with smash attacks.
  • Use PK Flash as an edgeguard and nothing more. In fact, you don’t need to use this move at all – your amiibo will teach itself to edgeguard with it.
  • Make good use of PK Fire. It’s one of Ness’ best moves, and can rack up a lot of damage if used correctly. If you want an example of how powerful this move can be, take a look at this video.
  • If your Ness uses PK Thunder as an on-stage attack, don’t worry. This is actually one of his best moves, because other amiibo somehow don’t see it coming and will get hit. That being said, I don’t recommend that you use this move against your amiibo. Ness will learn to fire himself with PK Thunder naturally. Oh, by the way, the Ness amiibo can only fire itself with PK Thunder – it can’t chase foes with the ball of electricity.
  • Rely primarily on smash attacks. In addition to PK Fire (and sometimes PK Thunder), you should rely on smash attacks to hit and KO your amiibo. Ness’ best smash attacks are his forward smash and up smash – the former is a bit slow, but is very powerful, and the latter is very quick, has a lot of range, and is best used when your amiibo is directly next to you.

It will take a while for your amiibo to get to Level 50, but if you faithfully play by these tips, you will be creating a good foundation for your amiibo. One more thing, after your Ness reaches Level 50, you will need to do a “brush-up” mirror match every once in a while – if you decide to do that, you can refer back to this list of tips.

Once your amiibo has reached Level 50, we’ll move on to the really important stuff – honing its skills and turning it into a true champion!


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Your Ness amiibo is now Level 50…and your journey has officially just begun. You see, you can’t take a fresh Level 50 amiibo into a tournament and expect it to do well – just like a real player, your amiibo needs additional practice and experience in order to become strong.

Your Amiibo’s Match Experience

One of the important things your amiibo needs is match experience. It needs to know how to handle certain things that other characters have, such as Little Mac’s shield breaks, Bowser’s Flying Slam, and Lucario’s aura mechanic. If you have other amiibo, train them up with my guides and have them all fight each other in 1v1 matches. You want to expose your amiibo to as many other amiibo as you can.

For more information on an amiibo’s match experience, and which specific characters you should prepare for, click here!

Defensive Practice

It’s also important for your amiibo to play defense, and my defensive training session will help it do just that. It only takes a few minutes to refresh your amiibo’s defensive capabilities, so why not give it a try?

Keep this in mind, though: as your amiibo plays matches against other amiibo, its defensive ability will be somewhat watered down over time. To keep your amiibo at its best, repeat the defensive training session as needed.

Amiibo Trainer’s Guides

Amiibo Trainer is another website dedicated to amiibo training that releases high quality content. They have some very helpful guides that I recommend you use in conjunction with the ones I have here.

First up is the Amiibo 15, a 15-minute training session that hundreds of amiibo trainers around the globe have used. Its concept and goal is quite similar to my defensive training session that I mentioned earlier, but is a very good option for quickly improving your amiibo.

And then there are Amiibo Trainer’s monthly guides. Each month, a new training guide will be released that talks about a specific bonus combination – what it is, and how to maximize your amiibo’s use of it. I use these guides as a supplement to my own methods, and I think you should, too.

Going Forward

The road to amiibo superstardom is long and hard, and it isn’t as simple as this guide might’ve made it seem. But with the right bonuses, enough match experience, and defensive practice, your amiibo can and will become a champion.

At some point, you may become stumped on what to do next or experience a problem with your amiibo. Remember, I am here to help you. It’s quite literally my job! If you have any questions, comments, or concerns regarding your Ness amiibo’s performance, shoot me a message at amiibocloud@gmail.com.

If you don’t like sending emails, you can also contact me on Reddit or Twitter. If you’d like, you can also join Cloud’s Observatory, where many people gather to discuss all things amiibo training.


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Still with me? If you haven’t noticed, I’m really passionate about amiibo training, to the point where I can somehow write over 3,000 words on one character. Whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing is up to you. In any case, thank you so much for reading this guide! Like the vast starscape of outer space, amiibo training is endless – there’s always a way forward. You’re never really “done”. Again, I’m here to help you all the way. If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, hit me up at amiibocloud@gmail.com!

And hey, since you’re here, you obviously like amiibo training, but do you like beautiful views of space and random discussion? Cloud’s Observatory has all three, and currently serves as the main amiibo training hub. Registration is free, and by joining, you’ll be able to pick up some sweet rewards (including exclusive guides!) and talk to amiibo trainers worldwide.

Note: If you post a comment here, I might not see it. The best way of asking me a question is through email.

Credits:

I may have done the training and the initial guide writing, but I had some help from a few others. This part’s dedicated to thanking them for their assistance!

Secret Password: Super NES

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14 thoughts on “Character Guide: Ness”

    1. You’re welcome! I wasn’t sure if this new format was good or not, but I’ve been getting some overwhelmingly positive feedback, so I think I’m going to keep it this way!

      Like

  1. This is great! You did a fine job in the Tournament, and you do a better one making amiibo Guides! One question though, what happened to your “Double PK Thunder” guide? I can’t seem to find it.

    Like

    1. Sorry for the late reply! I don’t get alerted when new comments are posted, unfortunately. The double PK thunder guide got removed. Not because it did not work, but because its use is so limited that I figured it wouldn’t be worth the time.

      Like

  2. Excellent work!

    Quick question, recently you have said that training your amiibo with equipment is the way to go, and I agree, but what about the amiibo I already trained without equipment? Do you recommend me to train them again from start with the equipment I want, or is it ok to just give them the equipment now that they’re 50?

    Like

  3. Okay, this guide summed up in one sentence:How To Make Your Ness Amiibo God.

    I did it on my Ness, like the guide said. I only did 2 of the timer matches, because they weren’t working for me, and continued to do step 2 matches. Other than that, everything else I did correctly.

    Lets just say the results….well….he stalled out Mewtwo and got a win, then got hurt but destroyed Pikachu, and utterly crushed Lucina once hit level 50.

    YOUR GUIDE IS TOO OP.

    Cloud, I HEAVILY thank you for this guide. If it weren’t for this, my throat wouldn’t be sore from all the hype screaming because of my Ness amiibo destroying my best amiibo. AT FRESH LEVEL 50 AND BELOW. I can’t describe how entertaining and amazing this guide worked and was written. This is a blessing of a guide. I will be trying this on other amiibos too, because if it works this well on Ness, it HAS to work well on others that dont need extra training (like Marth, with his tippers). Again, thank you so much Cloud for taking the time to write this guide. ❤

    (if you want to know my ness stats, its 40/40/40 with Healing Shield, Shield regen Improved, and Improved Escapability)

    Like

    1. It’s called championship edition for a reason, haha. I’m glad to hear that Ness became awesome with this guide! All that’s left for you to do is go out there and win a tournament!

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      1. I think I will enter Ness as my next tournament champion. Well, first one. If hes THIS strong at fresh level 50, just a bit of practice and he can be one of the best amiibos out there.

        I’ll also reply if the guide works well on other amiibos. Currently working on Zelda and Dedede. Any advice for best grounded moves?

        Like

  4. Excellent work! I’m very sorry I didn’t get a chance to help out with this one, but it looks like you did a tremendous job without me! Keep it up man!

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    1. Thanks! And hey, if you find anything wrong with this during free time, let me know and I’d be happy to change it. Thanks again for your help, by the way!

      Like

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