Hi, everyone. I’m happy to present my Top 100 Melee Sets of All Time, with today’s focus on the sets ranked 70-61. Here’s a brief FAQ on this project and The Book of Melee.
What is The Book of Melee?
“The Book of Melee” is my upcoming book about the history of the competitive “Super Smash Bros. Melee” community. It follows Melee’s greatest players and leaders through their collective efforts to support the scene’s survival over nearly two decades. I began working on the book in late 2016, and am releasing it for electronic consumption on May 8, 2019. Physical copies are TBA, and currently only available for those who purchased the book for a limited offer on The Big House 8 Compendium. Purchasing a physical copy will be available at a later date.
What is The Top 100 Melee Sets of All Time?
This project is exactly what it sounds like: a recap of my top 100 favorite Melee sets leading up to my book release.
How did you determine the Top 100?
As detailed in my introduction and methodology post, I went through all of Melee history and picked my favorite sets from each year and major tournament. After creating this initial list, I chose to order and cut down what I had selected, based on both the criteria I listed in my previous post and personal taste. Before anyone asks about why “X” wasn’t on the list, chances are that it could have easily made the Top 100, but just wasn’t selected. There were a bit more than 120 sets that I initially listed.
More accurately, the final project could be interpreted as “Edwin’s Top 100 favorite Melee sets of all time.” But I’d like to think that the effort I took into pursuing this project, as well as writing a book about Melee history, would be enough for this list to be somewhat of an authoritative starting resource for any newcomer to the scene, and not just some guy’s opinion.
I’ve never heard of you! What makes you think you’re qualified to determine Melee’s best sets above anyone else?
I’ve been writing about Melee news and Melee history for almost three years. I can’t say that this list is really anything more than just my opinion based on a set of arbitrary criteria that I try to be fair with, but I hope it’s an entertaining and convincing read for anyone interested in Melee.
70. Zain vs. Rishi at The Big House 8
For years, PPMD and Mew2King were considered the closest players to having “solved” the Marth ditto. But Zain and Rishi, bolstered by years of practice and competition between the two, have pushed elements of the Marth ditto meta into heights rarely, if ever, before seen. In this set, the two friends, rivals, and Marth compatriots put on quite a show, with a terrific game four decided by one miraculous reversal.
69. Leffen vs. Axe at Flatiron 3
The godslayer and the longtime Pikachu hero are two of Melee’s biggest fan favorites, but they’re also heated rivals. Though Leffen has typically gotten the better hand throughout their history, Axe remains a threatening opponent for the godslayer. Following a forgettable performance in their winner’s finals match, Axe goes ten games deep against the tournament favorite in grand finals.
68. Armada vs. Wizzrobe at Smash Summit 5
The start of this set is completely unexpected. Wizzrobe bodies Armada so hard throughout the first two games that you can feel the commentator’s disbelief and confusion within their words. But, like all sets with Armada, you can never really count him out. Were it not for another set with the Swede against a Captain Falcon earlier that year, this would be remembered way more and given the recognition it deserves as an all-time classic.
67. Fly Amanita vs. Silent Wolf at Kings of Cali 3
A common misconception about Fly Amanita is that he refused to wobble out of integrity. In fact, part of why Fly used handoffs and focused in other areas of the Ice Climbers metagame was because he couldn’t consistently wobble in tourney. Regardless, playing in his home region and in the middle of an epic loser’s run, Fly Amanita found himself in a deep hole against Silent Wolf, with one Climber, one stock and one final match to determine his fate.
66. Armada vs. Hungrybox at Pound V
Just when you thought you had seen it all, Armada picked a low tier against the Apex 2010 champion. The sheer unexpectedness of this counterpick and shellshocked reactions of Swiftbass and D1 make watching this set entertaining to this day. It may not be as grueling as their hour-long grind at Apex 2012, nor as established as their Genesis 2 set (dubbed by HomeMadeWaffles as “the wackest fucking set in the world”). Hell, it’s not as absurd as when Hungrybox tried to counterpick Ness at Apex 2013, but the historic significance of this set made it a well-earned inclusion.
65. Mango vs. Plup at Smash Summit 2
By this time, Plup had all but joined the ranks of the elite. And in this set, the Florida Sheik dominated Mango for stretches. But in classic Mango fashion, the Norwalk hero always struck back just as hard. And on game five, playing on Pokémon Stadium, with Plup playing some of his finest Melee of the year, Mango found himself falling behind. Could he make the comeback?
64. Mew2King vs. ChuDat at Zenith 2012
Following years of local inactivity, national inconsistency and time away from serious Melee competition, ChuDat came out of nowhere at Zenith 2012. Starting with slaying Hungrybox early at the event, Chu blitzed through the rest of bracket, turning the clock back and facing off against a man whom he typically beat in their respective primes. The timelessness of both Chu and Mew2King, as well as the thrilling Melee played in this set, ensure its spot on the list.
63. Armada vs. Hungrybox at Smash Summit 6
Hungrybox had been sent to loser’s bracket early, but he tore through most of his opponents on his way to loser’s semifinals. Armada too had been sent early to loser’s, but had looked a little more vulnerable and was amid a five set losing streak against Hungrybox, the only player in Melee history to ever truly make Armada look so lost for as many sets. Not necessarily playing his best and facing off versus the man who stole his throne, would Armada restore his honor or succumb again?
62. Wizzrobe vs. Hungrybox at OpTic Arena
If you’ve watched enough Hungrybox sets against players underneath the gods, you’ll know how it goes: a close heartbreaker set one into a more deflating followup where Hungrybox obliterates them. Wizzrobe is one of the few exceptions to this rule. At the Texas regional, Wizzrobe and Hungrybox engaged in three stellar sets where the 20GX hero proved not just that he wouldn’t go down without a fight, but that he himself could destroy the best player in the world.
61. PPMD vs. Mew2King at Xanadu: Harlem Shake Edition
Mew2King was considered unbeatable in Marth dittos until PPMD trounced him, 3-0. Just as hard however, Mew2King responded thunderously in grand finals, where his Sheik brutally 3-0’d PPMD’s Marth right back. Fighting the temptation of picking Falco, PPMD stayed determined in their third set and stuck with Marth against the man who not only knew the same character inside out, but also how to destroy him. Legend has it that PPMD was so annoyed about Mew2King and other members of the community attributing his own success to Falco that he called his shot beforehand, telling Mew2King before the event that he was going to play Marth, and that he wanted to test himself against Mew2King in both the ditto and against his Sheik.