Shulk 101

Meta Knight

Community Rating:
-0.5 (Slight Disadvantage)

Professional Rating:
-0.3 (Slight Disadvantage)

Best Monado Arts for the MU: Shield > Speed > Jump > Buster > Smash

Meta Knight is a very scary character. With the ability to kill anybody he desires off of one stray hit makes him a powerful force to reckon with. However, this force has some specific counter play that makes fighting against him MUCH more bearable. And if you're playing Shulk, you are granted more tools against MK by just existing. This is not a hard MU by any means, but this is one that you have to know some things before going in.


  • The neutral in this MU is very simple actually. MK only has 2 moves that lead into his very busted advantage state: dash attack and dash grab. Good MK players will tend to whiff punish any of the Shulk players moves, thus spacing any attacks against MK as the risk-reward is simply not worth it.
  • Since dash grab and dash attack are the only main ways MK gets anything relevant started, they are going to be playing very grounded. Which means they have the ability to shield. DO NOT TRY TO ATTACK FROM THE AIR 9 TIMES OUT OF 10 YOU WILL GET HIT. You are able to combat this slightly by jump mode cross-ups but those will get easily adapted to if repeated use.
  • Shulk needs to be playing in the range where MK's dash attack ends. Good moves to whiff punish MK are Dtilt, jab, grab, and maybe a smash attack if your reactions are on point. Speed Art is perfect for this neutral as it gives you lots of flexibility. 
  • Another way to play this MU neutral is to camp the ledge. If MK dash attacks you while you are at the ledge, then you will get sent offstage and MK will not be able to follow you as he cannot get under you for the ladder combos. If he dash grabs you, he could hope to get a ladder conversion off Bthrow, but if you DI up on the Bthrow, you should be fine. Keep in mind that if you get dash attacked at the ledge and you are sent offstage, the situation could turn into a edgeguard/ledge trap one, so be smart about your recovery.


  • Playing a grounded game with Dtilt, dash grab, shield and jab works well against their grounded approaches.
  • Learn their dash -> shield habits and dashgrab them.
  • Do not try to punish or challenge their Fsmash. It has nearly no lag and can be angled up to stop your aerial approaches. Just wait (or carefully get behind them if you're confident in your timing). Bair seems really effective at challenging Fsmash, though, especially from above.
  • If Metaknight dash attacks your shield, you can ALWAYS Airslash OoS to punish his dash attack.


  • Once Shulk has the momentum on MK, things get fun. MK's hurtbox is very big and he is also a fast-faller who is light, so he gets hit by everything and dies by anything. Due to his size, he is really easy to tech chase on the ground. 
  • This is more of a MK player habit, but whenever they are thrown into the air/disadvantage, they tend to start double jumping since they have multiple jumps (5 to be exact). This makes it easier to read the double jump and get a KO off of it with a Utilt or Uair.
  • Be careful with your advantage state against MK because they do have a couple of tricks up their sleeve. One of the more dangerous ones is Dimensional Cape. Due to how long Shulk’s moves last, if you mess up on let’s say a Utilt when you have him the air, he could Dimensional Cape you as a punish. This is more of a problem when you are at around 100% since you will die for sure unless you have Shield Art.
  • Keeping MK trapped at the ledge is really good as well. On reaction, you could react to his roll off ledge with a turnaround grab, a short hop Nair, Fsmash or Usmash, anything you want really. I have found it easier to hold shield when he is at the ledge and just react to what he does. If he tries to jump off ledge and float away, his air speed is not really good so you could definitely give chase especially with Jump or Speed Art. This is also the only time in the MU where I suggest having Smash Art on.
  • Never go offstage to try to gimp MK. His recovery demands a lot of respect due to multiple jumps, his UpB that goes really high, and SideB that goes far horizontally. If you do go offstage and you mess up. UpB to UpB from MK is true if he grabs the ledge from the first UpB and it’s a kill. SideB is also a multi-hit that will spike you if you get hit, so just don’t go offstage against him. The reward you get for getting a Smash Art Fair on him is good because he will die at like 70%, but it is much MUCH safer to just cover his ledge options.
  • You can edgeguard him horizontally with little risk, but make sure that you can get back on stage before he does because his advantage state can be pretty strong (or rather, cheesy).



  • This is easily the scariest part of the MU. Once MK lands a dash attack on you, he could either get big damage on you, leave you in a really bad spot, or kill you. First things first, DO. NOT. AIR. DODGE. Just DO NOT. If you ever feel like you could get away from a string, it is much MUCH better to jump away, but for the most part it is guaranteed, so it is not worth it at all. An example of when it is better to jum away is let's say you get dash attack at about 80% and it was the soft hitbox of dash attack. In that situation, the Uair is not guaranteed, but people do not know that, so they airdodge thinking the hit is coming. The MK waits, proceeds to Uair -> UpB and their opponent dies. Substitute the airdodge with a jump away and I can guarantee you will live every time (unless the MK reads the double jump away and UpBs to where you’re drifting. In that case, they just hard read you).
  • This is the save and grace of the MU: Shield Art. Every Shulk players knows that Shulk has the ability to change Arts in hitstun, so as soon as MK hits you with a dash attack or a dash grab, you can change to Shield Art and if the MK decides to go on with the ladder combo, the end result will be you living every single time. What MK could do in this situation is while he is using Uairs and Shield Art turns on, he could switch his objective to just getting you offstage, so be ready in case they do that.
  • ALWAYS HAVE SHIELD ART READY. If Shield Art has not recharged and you get dash attacked, Shulk is very tall and the perfect weight to get laddered easily and you will most likely die.
  • Never try to land on top of MK in disadvantage. That ia asking for MK to hit you some more and there is nothing Shulk can get on MK in disadvantage that’s so rewarding that justifies you landing on top of him. Always go to ledge or land away (MALLC works too).
  • Always keep your double jump offstage against MK. Because he has a really strong presence offstage, he has 5 jumps to follow whereever you want to go and a Bair that is REALLY strong, so make sure to be careful. Nair is also a move to be careful of since it is a sex-kick esque move. These moves do not have much range though so avoiding it should be easy. Just have Speed or Jump Art on and you will be okay.


  • Cycling to Shield Art works against Uair strings.
  • If you're not confident with switching to Shield Art quickly enough, their combo can kill you from 20 to 50%, so you can always play the neutral in Shield and Smash Art during that whole percentage range and avoid it altogether.

Other Notes

  • Smash Art in neutral in this MU is a death wish. Never, NEVER go into it in neutral. The main reason that Shulk does good in this MU is because he is able to live the ladder combos like no other character can, so abuse that.
  • MK's Dtilt and Ftilt are decnt pokes, and Dtilt has the ability to set up into a dash attack by a chance of tripping (30% chance to trip), and Ftilt is deceptively strong and easy to misDI. As long as you're not close quarters against him, you should be fine against these moves they do not have much range.
  • The ahmad or 248 (Uthrow Uair) kills MK at around 70 and 90 as an airdodge read. Even earlier with Rage. 
  • You out-reward him because the Uair strings cannot kill you while you hit him hard with Buster, Smash and edgeguarding.
  • So just play the neutral a lot, do not risk overextending, stay safe and patient and let them come to you if you are in the lead.
  • If you do not get killed early or gimped, you should win by just winning the neutral.

Vanilla Full Hop Buffered Nair hits while Standing? No.
Vanilla Full Hop Buffered Fair hits while Standing? No.
Vanilla Full Hop Buffered Dair hits while Standing? No.
Jump SH/Speed FH Buffered Nair hits while Standing? No.
Jump SH/Speed FH Buffered Fair hits while Standing? No.

Vanilla Full Hop Buffered Nair hits while Crouching? No.
Vanilla Full Hop Buffered Fair hits while Crouching? No.
Vanilla Full Hop Buffered Dair hits while Crouching? No.
Jump SH/Speed FH Buffered Nair hits while Crouching? No.
Jump SH/Speed FH Buffered Fair hits while Crouching? No.

Author: Nicko

Meta Knight (80)-

  • Down Throw (C)
    • DI away, maybe DI in at low percent for a mix
  • Forward Throw (C)
    • DI away at all percent, Meta Knight's will typically use this if they get a dash grab at high percent since it leads into an up b so watch out for that. Can also follow up into a dash attack or short hop aerial at low percent.
  • Back Throw (K)
    • Kills at about 140% from the edge of the stage.
    • Kills at about 210% from the middle of the stage.
  • Up Throw (K)
    • Since this throw has Meta Knight jumping high and then slamming back down, it kills earlier if you use it below or on a platform. Kills at about 150% on the middle platform on Battlefield and at 170% for either of the side platforms. Kills at 170% without any platforms on FD and 185% on BF.

Information from this guide on Smashboards

Best Stages:

  • Dream Land 64
  • Town and City

Worst Stages:

  • Final Destination
  • Battlefield
  • Lylat Cruise


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VideoPlayer 1Player 2P1 CharactersP2 CharactersStagesDate
TyrantNickoGame 1: Meta Knight
Game 2: Meta Knight
Game 3: Meta Knight
Game 1: Shulk
Game 2: Shulk
Game 3: Shulk
Game 1: Smashville
Game 2: Smashville
Game 3: Smashville
TyrantNickoGame 1: Meta Knight
Game 2: Meta Knight
Game 1: Shulk
Game 2: Shulk
Game 1: Smashville
Game 2: Smashville
Larry LurrNickoGame 1: Meta Knight
Game 2: Meta Knight
Game 3: Meta Knight
Game 4: Meta Knight
Game 5: Meta Knight
Game 1: Shulk
Game 2: Shulk
Game 3: Shulk
Game 4: Shulk
Game 5: Shulk
Game 1: Final Destination
Game 2: Final Destination
Game 3: Final Destination
Game 4: Final Destination
Game 5: Final Destination

Last updated by TrueSapphire on July 19th, 2018 at 07:53 PM