Ganondorf, The King of Evil is Link’s arch-nemesis in most games in The Legend of Zelda™ series. As the embodiment of all evil, Ganondorf seeks to take control of Hyrule. He plundered a piece of the sacred Triforce from the Temple of Time when Link pulled the Master Sword from its pedestal. With the Triforce of Power in Ganondorf’s possession, Hyrule was plunged into darkness until Link™ and Zelda™ defeated the fiend.
Section 1: Character Overview
The King of Evil’s arsenal of moves is as deadly as they come, as he has many powerful tools to work with. His most famous (or infamous, depending on who you ask) move is Flame Choke, a command grab that bypasses an opponent’s shield and deals heavy damage. Foes caught by this move are forced to the ground, leaving them open to Ganondorf’s down or forward tilt for even more damage. These two tilts, alongside his jab, possess great power and knockback and are some of Ganondorf’s fastest moves. His smash attacks are some of the most powerful of their kind, all with extremely high KO potential – forward smash in particular has the power to break shields even when uncharged! His special moves, while not as spectacular as his smash attacks and tilts (barring Flame Choke, of course), also have good KO potential; his down special, Wizard’s Foot, is his second most reliable special attack and approach option. Finally, Ganondorf is a heavyweight, making him a bulky and resilient fighter.
Unfortunately, Ganondorf is held back by a few (albeit minor) flaws that could possibly hinder his battlefield prowess. His smash attacks, while powerful, are quite slow, meaning they can be dodged or shielded with the right timing, but this problem is easily circumvented by teaching Ganondorf to rely on his tilts for damage. His recovery is another problem: neither his jump nor his up special grant much height. Ganondorf’s large and slow frame is quite possibly his biggest problem, however – he’s easily caught in jab combos from the likes of Link, Luigi, Pac-Man, and just about any other fighter with a quick jab.
Ganondorf’s numerous strengths definitely outweigh his weaknesses, and he’ll likely become one of, if not the best amiibo in your collection. He requires a bit of training to perfect, but once he reaches Level 50, you’ll see for yourself why he’s one of the most feared characters in the competitive metagame.
Section 2: Recommended Equipment
Stats & Bonuses
For more information on equipment – including instructions on how to farm for custom parts – please read our amiibo equipment guide.
Most amiibo tournaments allow and encourage equipment. In fact, over ninety percent of competitions do – but if you’d prefer to forgo custom gear and leave your amiibo ‘vanilla’, you can skip this section. Otherwise, you will need to equip your amiibo with a viable setup of stats and bonuses. The following build has been extensively tested and proven effective:
+40 Attack / +70 Defense / +10 Speed
- Warlock Blade: This is a custom move version of Ganondorf’s neutral special, Warlock Punch. It’s one of the coolest custom moves available: instead of a punch, Ganondorf strikes with the Sword of Sages! It deals less damage overall, but has enhanced range and can shatter a full shield.
- Dark Fists: This is a custom move version of Ganondorf’s up special, Dark Dive. Dark Fists grants super armor during startup and has enhanced KO power. The super armor prevents Ganondorf from being gimped offstage by projectiles from opponents like Mario, Link, and King Dedede.
Once your amiibo’s stats, bonuses, and custom moves are refined and ready to go, your training will officially begin! If you encountered a problem while equipping your amiibo, feel free to join our Discord server to ask for help.
Section 3: Training Your Amiibo
Amiibo training is a very specific task, and for the best possible result, you will need to approach it with caution. You can’t just go all-out using combos and aerials: both are seen as “newbie tactics” by competitive trainers. Instead, you should remain grounded at all times, making sure to punish your amiibo for every aerial attack it uses against you. This is true regardless of whether or not your amiibo was fed equipment.
To help your amiibo properly utilize its moveset, you will mirror match it from Level 1 all the way to Level 50. Playing timed matches on Ω-form stages is highly recommended.
Training Tips (Equipment & Vanilla)
- Neutral options: jab, forward tilt, down tilt, and side special. Ganondorf’s jab and forward tilt are his fastest options for quickly racking up damage. His side special, Flame Choke, is perhaps his best neutral attack – it true combos into a down tilt to inflict major damage and knockback. Be sure to use jabs, forward tilts, and Flame Choke combos during your training.
- Main KO moves: forward smash, up smash, and side special. Each one of Ganondorf’s smash attacks is extraordinarily powerful: his forward smash, while slow, can net early KOs; up smash, on the other hand, is a perfect blend of power and speed and serves as Ganondorf’s most reliable KO option. Flame Choke into down tilt is another option that can bypass shields.
Training Tips (Vanilla-Only)
- If you did not feed your amiibo equipment, it’s a good idea to teach it to grab, pummel, and throw its opponents. When grabbing your amiibo, throw it towards the nearest edge. This means you will only need to use forward and back throws. In the equipment metagame, Improved escapability renders most grabs and throws useless. Without the presence of this bonus, your amiibo is free to use its grab as often as it pleases.
When your amiibo finally reaches Level 50, its training will truly begin. Just like a real player, amiibo need match experience and practice against different characters. For more information on training your amiibo past Level 50, follow this link.
Section 4: Conclusion & Credits
Thank you so much for reading! Although the guide may be coming to an end, your training most certainly isn’t: there’s always a way to make an amiibo stronger, and yours is no exception. If you need additional help, check out the Amiibo Mechanics & Metagame Guide. If you want to ask specific questions, you can also stop by our Discord server.
If your desire to read amiibo training guides and articles hasn’t been entirely fulfilled, there are more posts here that you might like. Amiibo Training Analysis analyzes a specific aspect of the metagame in great detail. Meanwhile, the official amiibo tier list ranks each amiibo’s potential. The FAQ is another good resource worth checking out. Alternatively, you can head back to the master list of guides for even more amiibo training methods!