Aether(天空 Tenkū, lit. "Heavenly Sky") is Ike's Up Special Move. He first throws his sword in the air and crouches. After the sword hits the apex of its trajectory, he jumps up, catches it, and hurtles toward the ground. It appears functionally similar to Kirby's Final Cutter.
Although it gains very little horizontal distance, it is a decent recovery move, for as Ike's sword reaches the top before Ike, it can hit anyone attempting to edgehog and give Ike an opening so he can leap up and grab a ledge. If the attack is initiated in close range, it hits the opponent upwards and sucks them into a multi-hit combo in midair, which finishes with a spike when Ike swings the sword down and descends.
Also, this move can be used as an effective edgeguard. If standing on the edge facing away from the platform when performing Aether, instead of falling off the stage to his death, he turns around and grabs the edge, sending the opponent downwards quickly, often to their death, as few characters have a good enough recovery to survive. However, due to being unable to grab the edge until descending, it can be easily edgehogged. Aether is also a good follow-up to his Down Throw, and its disjointed hitbox can be used to hit enemies through solid platforms, interrupt enemies' aerial attacks, or set off Quark Mines in the Subspace Emissary.
Ike's up special has limited vertical range; it has more than it looks, though. When Ike is recovering low, go towards the edge to position him right under it, then use Aether. If the sword is just at the edge when Ike throws it skywards, then Ike will grab the edge (only if he is facing towards the edge when he does it though). Aether also has some offensive uses to it. Ike can edge-guard with the move pretty effectively. The sword can hit opponents trying to recover high and then the starting hit boxes and attack on the way back down will hit opponents recovering low or parallel to the stage. Don't use this method of edge-guarding too often or the opponent will roll past Ike and catch him on the ending lag of the attack. A good combo with Aether is down throw to up special (the opponent must be at very low percents for it to work).
|Ike's Special Moves|
|Side Special||Quick Draw|
|Final Smash||Great Aether|
Aether Drive has Ike throw his sword up diagonally, jump to grab it, and then swing it on the way down. This significantly increases his horizontal recovery.
- Better horizontal recovery
- Kill move at high percentages
- Good damage when all hits connect
- Can SD
- Poor for edge-guarding
- All hits will only connect within certain damage range
The Aether Drive custom variation is better for horizontal recovery because the sword is thrown diagonally upwards rather than vertically; however, this makes it more difficult for all of the hits of the move to connect, and they only do so within a certain damage range. The move can still SD and because Ike moves forwards much more with this move, using it near an edge or using it too far from an edge can result in an SD. This also makes it poor for edge-guarding as Ike must space himself carefully from the edge or risk SDing. At high percentages, over 150%, the initial hitbox of Ike hurling the sword can kill opponents off the ceiling of the stage.
- Launches horizontally
- Greater range
- Executed faster
- Edge-guarding tool
- No horizontal influence
- Can not meteor opponents
The Aether Wave custom variation works more like Kirby's Final Cutter, sending out an energy wave across the ground upon landing. As the sword is thrown upwards it will launch opponents horizontally and the energy wave will also hit opponents away from Ike, which makes it a good edge-guarding move especially against characters with poor recovery like Little Mac and Captain Falcon. Since the move launches opponents horizontally, it will not meteor smash opponents. As a recovery it isn't the best; it has less horizontal influence than the default, to the point where there isn't any at all. It is executed faster, but when the move already has Super Armor speed isn't going to be that big of a factor in helping to prevent gimps.
|Ike's Custom Special Moves|
|Custom 1||Custom 2|
|Standard Special||Tempest||Furious Eruption|
|Side Special||Close Combat||Unyielding Blade|
|Up Special||Aether Drive||Aether Wave|
|Down Special||Paralyzing Counter||Smash Counter|
Aether is Ike's iconic Mastery Skill which is available once Ike promotes in the games that he appears in the Fire Emblem series of video games. It is described as a combination of the Mastery Skills: Sol and Luna. In both games Ike appears in, it involves throwing his sword upward, jumping, catching it, and coming down with a spinning cut that heals Ike equal to the damage inflicted (the effect of Sol), followed by a second rising strike that is performed as Ike puts space between himself and his opponent, which halves/ignores the foe's Defense score (the effect of Luna in Path of Radiance/Awakening and Radiant Dawn respectively). However, neither effect is applied to Aether in Brawl, and the second strike is omitted completely.
Aether would later be available to the new Lords of Fire Emblem: Awakening, Chrom and Lucina when they become Level 5 Great Lords. Though the attack properties are the same as Path of Radiance, the animation is not the same as its Tellius version. Ike appears in the game as a SpotPass and DLC character wielding Aether only during the battle.
- The beginning part of Ike's Aether (when the sword is out of his hand) gives him super armor until Ike retrieves his sword. As such, it is possible to avoid some of the most devastating Final Smashes, as well as him being trapped in freeze frames when his sword strikes a Smart Bomb.
- If Ike uses Aether six times without landing on a platform (i.e. by grabbing an edge after each Aether), he will not be able to grab an edge on the sixth use, and he will simply fall to his death if there are no platforms beneath him. This is to prevent Ike from stalling on an edge, and is important to know when using any technique involving Aether for Cruel Brawl.
If Ike is hit while throwing Ragnell in the air and is still on the ground when under the affect of the Timer, he might perform his landing animation for Aether while Ragnell is still in midair, creating 2 Ragnells. He will be stuck like this until Ragnell lands on the ground. Ike will then pick up the Ragnell he held and the duplicate will disappear. Note that sometimes, Ike will simply just stop or Ragnell will instantly land without spinning.
If a Smart Bomb is there, and Ike doing the Aether right there, he will freeze with the sword frozen up in the air when the Smart Bomb explodes. And then returns with the Aether move normally, but without Laaah! or Aether!
- Aether originally was the personification of the "upper sky", space and heaven, in Greek mythology.
- When Ike first appears in the Subspace Emissary, he uses a regular Aether on the Ancient Minister, but in the English versions he yells out "Great Aether". Because the voice clip of "Aether" in Japanese is said in two parts (天空 Tenkū, lit. "Sky") the voice clip of "Great Aether" was used instead.
- Although this move is functionally similar to Kirby's Final Cutter, it does not give off a shock wave upon landing, although Ragnell is capable of doing so in the Fire Emblem games. However, it still makes sense, because the Skill Aether could only be activated at close range in Fire Emblem.
- However, Aether Wave does create a shock wave.
- Even though Aether is Ike's signature move, it was originally used as the mercenary's critical hit animation in the GBA Fire Emblem games.
- The first use of Aether after using Great Aether will not have sword trails.
- In SSBWU/3DS, Ike will not properly hold his sword during the spinning portion of the attack when the game is currently playing in slow motion.
- Interestingly, if Ike uses Aether six times without landing on a platform (i.e. by grabbing an edge after each Aether), he will not be able to grab an edge on the sixth use, and he will simply fall to his death if there are no platforms beneath him. This is to prevent Ike from stalling on an edge, and is important to know when using any technique involving Aether for Cruel Brawl.