Playing Olimar in Doubles [TTA]
Most good teams have some type of cool team combo / gimmick that gives them the edge over just any other team. G&Ws will fill their bucket with their teammate’s projectile and then unleash a deadly KO move, while PSI twins will use the same idea to recover themselves. Luigi has a gimmick, which we all know is his shoryuken, that requires a grab-set up. Olimar, on the other hand, has quite possibly the best team gimmick in the game. It requires little team set-up, and completely annihilates other teams. This gimmick is Olimar’s purple pikmin upsmash.
As silly as it may sound at first, you may not realize how stale your usmash gets before someone is in KO range. We use it to combo, to juggle, and a purple pikmin isn’t always next in line when we’re at that precise moment where usmash is the best option. I will say this now and stand by it: Teams with Olimar should ENTIRELY REVOLVE around his purple pikmin usmash. Let me outline the function and basics of team play, and then I will show you how to utilize Olimar’s upsmash into play.
Team Structure [TSTC]
The most basic form of teams play is placement. In singles, a lot of matches can be determined by how well you space yourself. In teams it’s all about zoning. There are four zones on a stage, and that’s basically character placement
Image the above is FD, and the numbers represent characters in play. For explanation purposes I will now reference “O” as Olimar “X” for an opponent and “Y” for your teammate (or for a standard your team).
Team formation 1:
This is the most prominent formation in teams play. It is important that you are able to hold this position. This position has it so that your partner’s back is facing your back, and you’re fighting your opponents on the outside. While difficult to maintain, it is the strongest team formation. Here is where you get a lot of team combos and effort. In short, you’re disrupting your opponent’s team function by splitting them up (often times why people call doubles two 1v1s). The team on the side will most of the time win in this situation (assuming equal skill in both teams).
Now, an important part of teams play is to switch playing different characters. Mainly due to your opponent learning your teammates play style, but it’s also good to switch to get unexpected hits. Being able to switch between the two will score a lot of extra hits that normally wouldn’t happen. This is most effective in this formation since you’re right next to your partner, and it just requires that you switch sides and keep fighting. This formation is most effective at the beginning of the match, or when your opponents are at low percents.
Team formation 2:
This is the more common team formation. No matter how hard you try to hold the first one, it inevitably will reach here. The important factor of this team formation is to have the opponents with the higher percent on the left (or right… it goes both ways) and the opponent with the lower percent in the middle… usually best when one of them just spawns, otherwise it doesn’t matter a whole lot. The reasoning behind this is so that when you knock the one with the high percent off stage, you can ravage team combo the other one.
At this point you are going to keep the opponent that is still on stage under pressure. Why not go gimp / edge guard the other person? Like I said, an Olimar team’s function is “purple upsmash”. Needless to say, it’s going to take time for them to recover. Use this time to team combo the other person. When you go to edge guard the other teammate, the opponent on stage is going to go help them. Regardless of what your teammate might do, they will find a way out and go help them. "Helping them" often times means hitting you away from the edge, which then ofttimes results in you or your teammate dying. Play it safe and just double-team until his partner comes back.
The best formation for double-teaming the partner is usually going to be
The reason for this is when he finally gets back on stage, Olimar has the most options to just poke him away again, whether it be an f-smash or a grab… etc.
Team formation 3:
This is pretty standard in terms of starting a match, but it’s not going to happen often. When it does the person on the inside should try to finagle into the X’s zone and then go to team formation 1 or 2.
Olimar's Function in Doubles [FCTN]
Team formation 2 is MOST effective in teams with Olimar because it strengthens the team gimmick of his purple up-smash. As for Olimar’s placement, it SHOULD look like this
In most match-ups it should look like this. The exception is when you’re playing a MK who is in zone 3 and you’re at a low percent, where dash grab release to dtilt gimp is a likely scenario you want to avoid. Disregarding such occurrences, this is the strongest formation for Olimar as it makes your team gimmick very abuse-able.
Your teammate, unfortunately, will be doing most of the work. His job is to rack up damage on both characters. Olimar’s function is to avoid using up smash, tank stock, avoid contact in general, and upsmash people when they hit a high percent. Let me walk through that a bit more slowly.
Avoid using upsmash: This is THE MOST IMPORTANT part of Olimar teams play. Using your upsmash at any other time but for killing is a wasted asset. Here’s why his upsmash is so **** important. Un-stale, it will kill most of the cast at 80-90% given moderate DI. The best part of teams play with Olimar is that your options for pulling off an upsmash (even against those such as Peach and Luigi who make it hard) become exponentially easier. Most people won’t see it coming. Olimar is quick in terms of sneaking under people and just tappin’ that c-stick. Most people have an idea of what you’re about to do, but they have less time to react to it compared to a singles match. This makes perfect, or even really good DI, near impossible (assuming your team is keeping the pressure on them at all times). So moderate to good DI at best, and you will still be killing them at 80-90%. This isn’t a fun fact, more of a guarantee. If you save your upsmash, you WILL be killing them retardedly early (earlier than in singles). Note that it takes a very conscious effort to not use your usmash (especially after playing singles for so long), so it’s good to practice this in teams.
Tank stock / avoid contact: Putting Olimar in either zone 1 or 4 will give him the best options to tank stock. You teammate should be doing his work to aggravating the other team into attacking mostly him. To make sure they focus on your teammate, you should play super gay Olimar and make them GTFO. The goal is to build a perfect defense around the edge of the stage so there is less **** coming your way. This is also helped by your teammate randomly coming in and hitting the person who is attacking the opponent putting pressure on you. You teammate is also vitally important for doing this in order for you to not be tempted to use your usmash. So in short you should be playing very defensively around your ledge so that you hold stocks. Since your teammate is the primary damage builder, he will also be the primary damage taker, and will more likely need 4 stocks to complete his job.
Note: For your team gimmick to work, you need at least one purple pikmin at all times. Tanking the edge is good because if there’s ever a time where you’re fight free, you can farm purples (oh lawd I actually found a use for it…. //wrist)
Up smash: Olimar upsmash is one of the most ridiculous moves in Brawl, and it’s more ridiculous in teams. The purple pikmin usmash has tremendous range, tremendous power, and tremendous spam-ability (it’s freaking quick). For your gimmick to work you just have to keep an eye at your opponents percent, and as soon as it tints a reddish color run and usmash away. Point to the sky until your arms hurt. Killing at such ridiculous percents causes something that most smashers can’t help. It gets them angry, and they lose their cool. After that you’ve won. They will play reckless and target you playing really poorly. Sometimes they will forget your teammate is there, which allows him to come in for easy hits. This works at more low levels of bracket, but it’s still nice to understand. Watching DSF play M2K at WHOBO, you see that even the best players can lose their cool, so just be mindful.
Another big factor in Olimar teams play is his partner. You need a partner that can help you fluidly execute your upsmash / keep it fresh. There are two types of functionalities in characters that will help an Olimar team:
Crowd Control: These characters are built for being able to take upon two characters at once. They work great because they can keep both people occupied and off Olimar.
Strong crowd control characters: G&W, DDD, R.O.B. Toon link
Middle crowd control characters: Pikachu, Wario, Marth
Weak crowd control characters: Diddy, Luigi, Lucario, ZZS
Aerial *****s: These character protect Olimar where he is weak, the air. While Olimar has a decent aerial game, having a partner that can shut out your opponents' aerial game (or at least go even with it) is just another advantage on saving that upsmash.
Strong aerial ***** characters: G&W, Luigi, Marth, Peach, Pit, R.O.B. Wario
Middle aerial ***** characters: DDD, Lucario, Shawnik, Toon link, Yoshi
Weak aerial ***** characters: Jiggs
Appear in both: G&W, DDD, R.O.B. Toon link, Marth, Luigi, Lucario
G&W: While G&W can’t bucket pikmin (although it would be pretty sweet if Oil Panic latched onto someone and continued to do damage until they got it off) He’s still a pretty good teammate. He can ***** around with nairs and bairs and keep both opponents at bay. He can also really pressure people in the air. Overall he keeps your Olimar safe. An issue with most Game and Watch mains is that they don’t understand the concept of Oli-grab + smash, since they usually hit both people. If you find a G&W that can space well, good for you. Another issue with G&W is that they don’t really care where you are and will team attack you a lot. Their entire play style in singles revolves around aerial spam everything that moves, which could work to your opponents' advantage. Again, this is a generalization… and you may find a G&W who is good in team practice and what not. He also detracts from your team gimmick in that he will c-stick away at them and try to kill them, when the primary focus should be on you killing them. All in all, he’s a pretty good teammate, and I’d go for it if you can find a G&W main that you can mesh well with.
DDD: DDD is a powerhouse. He tanks stocks just by being a fat penguin. He’s got the attributes that you want in a teammate. The only issue with DDD is that he is a huge combo target. Any team with an MK puts your team at risk because they can just nado ***** away, and there’s not much you can do about it. Good thing about DDD is that he has lots of combo potential as well. He can easily dthrow someone to you to usmash ect. Again, not quite the tip top of teammates, but he’s still a good choice for teams.
R.O.B: While carrying the same combo target as DDD, I feel R.O.B is one of the strongest matches to Olimar. If R.O.B can do any thing, it’s crowd control. He’s easily the best at it. Rob can, and will, take on two teammates at the same time for the duration of the match. Be mindful of helping him when he’s being double teamed, though. R.O.B also has a VERY SLOW uthrow, which you can see coming for a mile away. You can use this to an advantage of usmashing them right as R.O.B comes down. It’s a good un-escapable, and incredibly easy-to-space set-up for Olimar. Olimar also covers R.O.B’s weak-spot (underneath him) with a powerful ground game.
Too… ****ing A: Yes, I will say that gay is also another great match for Olimar. <.< His spam and aerial prowess are buffed in team play, and he can hold his own in double-team situations. One of the added bonuses (for gay) is that he doesn’t have to worry about killing anymore. This is good because his usmash and utilt, which are normally saved as kill moves at 150% (LOL), are great “combo” moves. I currently team with a gay main right now; one of his favorite things is usmash locking DDD to 70% lol.
Marth: I would put marth around G&W and DDD, but not quite Gay and R.O.B. Marth is overall really good for Olimar. He has the air down. You have his bad match-ups taken care of, and he has yours. It’s all good on paper. I just haven’t seen a good OliMarth team, so I don’t have much to say about it. The only warning I can give is to make sure he can space well, so when you grab someone and he charges his fsmash that he doesn’t hit the opponent and tipper you. If someone wants to send me a vid of a good OliMarth team or give your exp with it, that’d be cool.
Luigi: Luigi is undoubtedly on par with R.O.B and gay, if not a smidge above. On top of Olimar’s gimmick, Luigi’s gimmick is super buffed. Olimar has a ridiculous grab, combine that set-up with Luigi’s shoryuken, and DAYUM. For extra fun you can piranha plant glitch it, and shoryuken during Olimar’s uthrow for even earlier KOs (still in testing). Luigi also covers Olimar in the air well, and Olimar covers Luigi on the ground well. The only problem with the OliLuigi team is that you both get gimped. We’ve dealt with that in singles, but it’s worse in doubles… just be prepared.
Lucario: Use the Anubis strategy. Olimar can be very good at tanking stocks and getting opportune kills.
Lucario should attempt to 2v1 the opponents and share stock when he's down. Lucario's power builds as he loses stocks, so he should start killing incredibly early and doing crazy damage as he dies off. Olimar should stalk the opponents, play keep-away, and look for opportunities to get free damage from a distance or kill.
Low ceilings / anything that give your upsmash / ability to save it an advantage
Ban: Stages like Japes with super high ceilings
Last Tips with Olimar in Teams [LAST]
GTFO: Tell your partner to just stay away from you in general. Team attacking is very frustrating, and you will hit him a lot with Olimar’s ginormous hitboxes if he doesn’t space himself away from your c-stick. For a general outline, tell him to give you 1/3 – 1/4 of the stage on the ground and never be directly above you. You should be good with that.
Pikmin toss: Don’t use it as much. Use it to bait people away from your partner or to snipe people with whites, etc. You should have a feel for how your pikmin toss works, but be mindful to whistle them off if they hit your partner. Note: you should tell your partner not to hit off the pikmin unless you intentionally make a plan to stall a hitbox with pikmin. It should be your job to whistle them off him and save him the grief of worrying about it. The exception to this rule is if there is a white attached to your opponent, or your teammate is already at a stupid high percent and there is one latched onto an opponent at the same time (the pikmin on your teammate will naturally fall off after a couple hits).