The Smash Back Room tier list has changed many times since its inception. Previous versions of the list are as follows. In later tier lists, characters are broadly ranked by their tier, and further ranked by the order in which characters are listed within the tier list. For instance, Falco is ranked above Samus in the fourth Melee tier list. Earlier tier lists use numerical rankings, and characters with the same numerical value are listed alphabetically.
For the purposes of low tier tournaments, those characters in tiers B and C are classed as "low tier" characters.
First tier list
|SSB Tier List #1|
Second tier list
The second SSB tier list was created by the N64 community on SmashBoards.
|SSB Tier List #2|
Third tier list
The third SSB tier list was created by the N64 community on SmashBoards. It is the more recent one, so it can be considered "current". It eliminated the D Tier, making more characters be on the same tier.
First tier list (October 8, 2002)
|SSBM Tier List #1|
Though this was the first tier list, Smash World Forums was rife with discussion about tiers long before the Melee Back Room released its "MBR Tier Averages." The term "F/F/S" (short for "Falco, Fox and Sheik") was popular as a quick reference to Melee's top tier. Members on Smashboards, perhaps in backlash against novice sentiment towards Roy and Link, generally disdained those characters, and generally favored the game's fastest characters.
Members on Smashboards largely contested this tier list's placement of Mewtwo, which they felt to be too low. Many Smashboarders considered Mewtwo a low or even middle tier character and were bothered that it, despite its great recovery and powerful throws, was placed at the bottom of bottom tier, where most people believed Bowser belonged.
Second tier list (December 19, 2002)
For the second tier list, the Melee Back Room created two tier lists: one made from the average (mean) of votes, and another from the mode.
|SSBM Tier List #2 (Mean)|
|SSBM Tier List #2 (Mode)|
Third tier list (June 23, 2003)
|SSBM Tier List #3|
This tier list was released soon after Ken Hoang won Tournament Go 4. Before Ken, Marth strategy largely encompassed rolling and C-stick smashing symptomatic of low-level play today, but Ken introduced to the community the uses of dash-dancing, chain throwing and aerial attacks, all techniques that largely improved Marth's metagame and moved him to top tier for years to come.
This is the first tier list that officially ranks characters into tiers.
Fourth tier list (July 1, 2003)
|SSBM Tier List #4|
Fifth tier list (September 29, 2003)
|SSBM Tier List #5|
April Fools Sixth tier list (March 31, 2004)
|SSBM Tier List #6 (April Fools)|
This tier list doubled as an April Fools joke and a lesson to the community to not blindly swallow the Melee Back Room tier list as the truth. Though most people suspected this tier list was a hoax, it set a precedent to criticizing the tier list that had not existed before.
To "defend" this hoax during the two tumultuous days it was the official tier list, Melee Back Room members argued that Marth was too slow to remain in the top two tiers, that Link had untapped aerial prowess, and that Jigglypuff, through speed and the Wall of Pain, ruled the air to the point of domination. Ironically, the latter prediction would come true in the post-Brawl metagame.
The Melee Back Room forgot to include Yoshi in this tier list; once people realized he was missing (six hours after the list was posted), the MBR put him in.
Sixth tier list (April 2, 2004)
|SSBM Tier List #6|
Seventh tier list (March 19, 2005)
|SSBM Tier List #7|
Eighth tier list (July 8, 2006)
|SSBM Tier List #8|
The names of these tiers were originally called God Tier, Top Tier, High Tier, Middle Tier, and Low Tier; these names were changed to the ones shown above on July 10, two days after the tier list was released.
This tier list marks the first time Sheik was not in top tier, and contains the biggest bottom tier of any tier list thus far. The balance of the tier list was a point of contention amongst many Smashers, who felt that it was too bottom-heavy and that the lower tiers should themselves be split, or the high tiers merged (particularly the top two).
Ninth tier list (October 14, 2008)
For the first time since June 2003, the Smash Back Room published each character's numerical scores.
|SSBM Tier List #9|
Original tenth tier list (September 14, 2010)
The SBR also included a "Gengar" tier in the list, where "Master Hand and other glitches" are placed. This was also originally a Smash Boards person's Tier list idea, but was improved and fixed by the MBR. The one who originally thought about this list was Kirby Kaze. Mewtwo and Jigglypuff have risen significantly from the previous tier lists. This is the only tier list to include a tier below the Bottom tier. This is also the tier list with the most ties in Smash history, having a total of 5, as well as the one with the largest tie (the entire Negligible tier is considered tied, or at least close enough to be considered tied).
Tenth tier list (December 31, 2010)
This is the first Melee tier list that uses lettered tiers instead of words. Sheik is once again placed in the highest tier with Fox, Falco, and Jigglypuff. The Ice Climbers and both Links are also placed in their own tiers, and Kirby and Pichu are placed at the bottom of the tier list. Both Pikachu and Mewtwo also rose 4 spots in this tier list from the previous ninth version.
Eleventh tier list (July 26, 2013)
First tier list (September 1, 2008)
|SSBB Tier List #1|
While many players wanted to have a tier list within a month or two of Brawl's release, the SBR decided to wait before making the first tier list. The idea was that making a tier list too early would result in it quickly becoming outdated, forcing the SBR to make a second one on short notice. Players' predictions of the tier list changed dramatically between the game's release and September. The most noticeable fluctuation was Snake's placing, who was first considered about mid tier, then skyrocketed to the perceived #1 spot above Meta Knight, this opinion being backed up by tournaments where Snake took almost all the top spots (in one case, the top 5 placings were all Snake). It wasn't until Mew2King began dominating with Meta Knight that players acknowledged that Meta Knight was better.
Second tier list (January 5, 2009)
|SSBB Tier List #2|
By this time, no player doubted Meta Knight's placing in the old tier list. In many players' opinions, Meta Knight wasn't just better than every other character, but better by a noticeable gap. Meta Knight was considered so good that it caused a huge debate on whether Meta Knight should be allowed in tournaments. After many heated discussions, the SBR decided by vote that Meta Knight should be left alone and no one should be banned.
Snake was also elevated above other characters to a similar degree, though not to the point of being considered banned. This resulted in both of these characters having their own tiers. Diddy Kong also received a huge bump up the tier list after NinjaLink successfully beat Mew2king by abusing Diddy's bananas to a level not seen before.
Third tier list (June 4, 2009)
|SSBB Tier List #3|
The first tier list to not have Captain Falcon last on the list. Instead, Ganondorf is last because of his slow attacks, bad recovery, and lack of mobility.
In this list, Wario and Sonic made a large jump. Wario's change is due to the newly found usefulness of his great air mobility, coupled with great recovery and heavy weight, making him a very defensive character that is hard to KO. While most of the community perceived Sonic as a bad character, dedicated mains continued to defy the tier list of Jan 1, 2009 by placing high in tourneys. In this tier list, their efforts were finally recognized.
Fourth tier list (February 26, 2010)
This tier list once again placed Meta Knight in his own separate tier. Another noticeable difference was Ness' rise. In previous tier lists, Ness was ranked low, but is now placed in (the lower part of) the middle tier, tied with Bowser for 26/27th place. Diddy Kong also rose, now being #3 on the tier list.
Fitfh tier list (September 24, 2010)
This is the fifth SSBB tier list. It was released on September 24, 2010 by the Smash Back Room.
While Meta Knight had previously set a record for having his own tier at the top, Ganondorf sets a more dubious one by having his own tier at the bottom. This is also the first tier list to have a spot for Zelda and Sheik used as a pair. Other notable things about the new tier list are Fox's and Ike's high rise on the tier list (Ike's streak of falling down on each tier list was ended and he returned to his position on the original tier list), Bowser's significant drop and introduction into the low tiers, Zero Suit Samus' introduction into the high tiers, and this was the first Brawl tier list to have a character repeat in the #3 spot with Diddy Kong (in previous tier lists, the character in the #3 spot was different for each tier list).
Sixth tier list (July 4, 2011)
This is the current tier list.
- First Melee tier list
- Second Melee tier list
- Third Melee tier list
- Fourth Melee tier list
- Fifth Melee tier list
- Sixth Melee tier list (April Fools)
- Sixth Melee tier list (real version)
- Seventh Melee tier list
- Eighth Melee tier list
- Ninth Melee tier list
- Tenth Melee tier list
- Eleventh Melee tier list
- Sixth Brawl tier list