Posted by: masterwarlord | February 13, 2012

MW Top 10s – 3v1 Bosses

Regardless of being told not to make articles weekly, I’m going to finally bring back the MW top 10s everybody’s been waiting for in full force – one list per week , every Monday until the end of MYM 12. You might also see some articles from the other leaders sprout up every now and again by some miracle, who knows?

Now, as far as bosses go, the obvious stuff was taken out of the way very quickly with the first few bosses – lock foe A and B out of the fight while you fight C in a 1v1. Hell, Rool thought Valozarg, the very first boss posted, didn’t have enough of this sort of thing. This list attempts to rate bosses against each other to try to find which ones actually do unique things with their boss status. That’s not to say that including a 3v1 set on your 1v1 set is bad if it doesn’t introduce anything to the boss genre, as very rarely are any compromises made to the 1v1 set – the very first set that did both 1v1 and 3v1 nailed functioning for both modes at the same time great, and most competent bosses since have followed suit. In the cases of some sets like the Flying Dutchman, a boss set just feels so obvious that it feels like a crime for it to not have had one.

Much like the Punch Out list from ages past, I will include my own sets on this list due to the small quantity of boss sets.

10: General Grevious – n88_2004 and Darth Meanie – MYM 10

While at the bottom of the list, this set managed to edge out a write-up I had for Dormammu, the only camper boss set until Kang came along, so being on the list at all is a pretty big privilege. Grevious essentially is a miniature Hugo set with only a single character, able to have multiple attacks going at the same time. This is far more relevant in 3v1, where Grevious will actually be needing to cover every single angle at once. Not only does this allow for defense, though, but it enables Grevious to multi-task splendidly in placing one hitbox to defend himself and another to aggressively attack foes. Seeing he’s melee based, he’s required to go on both the offensive and defensive simultaneously, something that could never be accomplished with a 1v1 set. The reason this is not higher on the list is because. . .Well. . .I don’t think the 1v1 set that this 3v1 set transitioned from was all that good to start with. In 1v1, Grevious can only mix and match with his standards and aerials at all, 2 attacks going on at a time at most. This set feels almost as if it should be an exclusively 3v1 based one, but as is the 3v1 form is somehow barely even acknowledged by fans of the set.

9: Mr. Banbollow – SmashDaddy – MYM 10

Banbollow’s ranged playstyle transitions to 3v1 decenly enough in a manner not unlike Dormammu, with Banbollow’s wire functioning as a highly versatile tool. All of those clusters and bubbles in the wire will be useful with so many foes around, rather than just being “there” as they make their way to the nozzle in 1v1. What makes Banbollow a good boss set, though, is his grab-game. Banbollow can tie up a foe in his wire, much less multiple foes, and with the way his wire is established make great use of foes as both meat shields and as threats – if the foe attempts to knock you off-stage, their ally that’s grabbed in the wire’ll be going down with you. Still, the set has little else to offer for boss mode, being more of a passive transition.

8: Nappa – MasterWarlord – MYM 9

While Banbollow could grab two foes at once, Nappa puts much more emphasis on this, most obviously by using foes as battering weapons against each other. The ability to grab extra foes is implemented very strongly into his throws, but feel natural without foes due to his ability to grab ground chunks. Said chunks manage to give Nappa a versatile defense, letting him either be a juggernaut as he approaches, using it to defend from every which way before using it as a weapon at the last second, or to prepare for his infamous Great Ape transformation. Nappa’s overpowered status helps him as a boss, making him feel almost like a 3v1 boss exclusive. This helps with the fact that Nappa changes very little between 1v1 and 3v1 – in hindsight, Great Ape Form should’ve probably just been exclusive to the boss mode. To give some more criticism to my own set, the Great Ape lacks much playstyle, when Monster N. Brio and Dark Fawful manage to have clear playstyle just fine with the same amount of inputs the Great Ape has.

7: The Appetizer – Getocoolaid – MYM 11

An unfortunate thing about the Appetizer’s glossy writing style is that while there’s so much wasted space, nothing is given for explaining about how the Appetizer plays in boss mode – I wouldn’t have liked this set nearly as much if not for said boss mode. The main set works well enough for 3v1, with the Appetizer creating mountains of solid trash to slide meatballs down and have several Garbodorish interactions with. More-so than that is how Appetizer takes knockback, never leaving the ground, mimicking Geto’s favorite set by channeling Grimer. This means of taking knockback makes the Appetizer’s piles of goop much more intruiging as he blocks himself off from being KO’d, or in the least makes foes have to do an uphill battle to push him. Better yet, though, is when the Appetizer gets off a grab his entire hurtbox is gone, leaving the enemy team nothing to attack until the Appetizer executes a throw. Via la Cutter Matter! What come across as fillerish throws for 1v1 are almost entirely intended for 3v1, with the Appetizer either able to gamble and go for meaty status effects or launch himself out of the foe he’s inside of at another one for a surprise attack. For all the praise I’ve given this boss mode, though, this set suffers more than any of the others by simply having a tacky 1v1 base start to start with. . .That and Geto bans access to the Appetizer’s Up Special and aerials in boss mode for no particular reason.

6: Dark Bowser – MasterWarlord – MYM 8

This set’s reputation has been practically assassinated post humously, as people have actually bought in to Zook and DM’s idiotic accusations that this moveset plays like a bad combo char in that DB simply always does the same actions to the foe inside the cage. Apparently, DM and Zook are such casuals that they do not know how to dodge. Regardless, this set isn’t as high as some other sets simply because the set relies heavily on locking each individual foe down to pick the remaining one off by himself, due to being only the second boss set ever created. In the least, Dark Bowser has a creative reason even today to keep at least one foe consistently constrained due to needing one on-stage to recover to via Up Special. Dark Bowser also has the using the foe as a meat shield/threat to avoid being killed that Banbollow had with his bair 2 MYMs earlier, and is able to shift the position of his meat shield with dashing attack and fair.

What makes this a truly outstanding boss set, though, is how much new is directly introduced with the Dark Fawful/Dark Star tag-team. Even with so few inputs, the duo manage to have a flowing playstyle, and the stage transition actually makes use of the stage it’s in with Dark Fawful’s chasing move. This can be seen somewhat as cheating due to Dark Bowser’s set being a non-factor in relation to Dark Fawful, but I simply consider it the pay-off of the boss mode of this set actually being at all ambitious, something quite rare among non Warlordian bosses.

5: Sid’s Toys – MasterWarlord – MYM 10

Something ignorant people insist about Hugo sets is that they’re disgustingly OP, and in the case of a set with no real disadvantages for each individual member of the group getting killed I’m somewhat inclined to agree. This makes it a natural fit for a boss set, a place where such an otherwise awkward concept is right at home. Originally as I wrote this up, the boss weights were almost the regular weights of the individual toys, as that’s how heavy I thought they’d realistically be sized up – the toys feel much too at home to be a boss set. With all of the grabs the set feels even to a reader as if it was designed for 3v1 in mind first and foremost, much less the massive quantity of suicide KOs. A 5v3 match where almost every single member of the 5 can suicide KO quite competently is a shockingly obvious concept, but no other Hugo sets, even by MasterWarlord, have dared venture into this territory. Admittedly, Hugo’s mechanic would not work in 3v1, but Gangreen lacking a boss mode is a tad disappointing. In summary, the concept of a Hugo boss set is just too good to pass up, and Sid’s Toys is definitely the best choice to turn into a boss set among them.

4: Vlad Plasmius – Darth Meanie and MasterWarlord – MYM 10

An equally obvious concept to a Hugo boss is a duplicates based boss, and Vlad Plasmius delivers – the premise was so good that MW was heartbroken to see this set go unfinished. While there’s kinks left in the moveset like the bair and dsmash that MW felt obligated to keep in due to not wanting to muddle too deeply with DM’s work, the moveset does all that’s needed of a duplicates set, with lots of set and forget moves, ways to bind duplicates to specific foes (Overshadowing and the dtilt), and the fthrow to force all the foes to come to a single point or face the consequences. Vlad lead the charge as the first duplicates set in MYM 10, and comes across as quite underrated in hindsight when he didn’t have to use invisibility as a crutch like the two winners. Mind control in general is also something that I’ve felt has been under-utilized in boss sets, when it seems like such an obvious thing to do as a unique way to “lock a foe down”.

3: Valozarg – MasterWarlord – MYM 7

Speaking of mind control, we get back to the first boss ever posted, Valozarg. His primary mechanic is corrupting foes by getting as much blood as possible into their systems, and the meat of his specials and a handful of other moves are dedicated to manipulating blood to fire at foes. Up Special in particular is beautiful as Valozarg forces foes to fight on top of his weapon, sliding blood back and forth on top of foes. Rool did indeed claim there was too much focus on this and not enough on saving foes from Valozarg’s grabs, but even after 20 boss movesets none of them have as much emphasis on this as Valozarg. Unlike other boss sets, foes actually –can- be knocked out of Valozarg’s means of “locking a foe out” – they can knock his foot/tail off a foe or smack him in the mouth/hands to get him to drop a foe he’s holding there. These four grabs with their own unique throw I always thought was a brilliant way of not copping out of a grab-game while still having all the usual throws – nevermind three extra grabs and pummels. Perhaps best of all about Valozarg, nobody else has ever attempted another huge 3v1 boss since Valozarg, with the closest thing being Onix. Even for 1v1 chars, very few characters can compare to Valozarg’s sheer size. Those that can, such as Wailord and Onix, are almost always unbearably terrible sets that border on jokes. Is it really that difficult to make sets for such huge characters? Valozarg still reigns supreme as a boss, despite him being the first of what’s become quite a well populated genre of sets.

2: Flying Dutchman – Davidreamcatcha and MasterWarlord – MYM 10

Before you ask, the “and MasterWarlord” refers to the fact that MasterWarlord made the mini that turned this set into a boss moveset. The Fly is an already fantastic concept, bringing the foe to another stage, but this works even better/feels even more fitting for a 3v1 boss. The Dutchman can also choose to bring as many foes as he wants to this realm, the boss mode answering the obvious questions of what happens to outside foes. The Dutchman’s already great moveset of spacers that double as gimpers gets a tune-up due to Warlord coming in, with the redundant moves getting competently differentiated and sometimes even made less tacky in other cases, making what’d already be a fantastic boss set if David just threw in a token mention of “He has a boss set”, even better. In particular, the Dutchman’s ability to destroy the souls of foes brings a whole new layer to the 3v1 set, with his spacers and lock-downs being useful for keeping foes from reaching the soul as he attempts to destroy it. It’s really a shame that this was largely ignored because it was a mini and was not posted alongside the set, as those who doubt the Dutchman’s top 10 placing might’ve been swayed by the boss mode.

1: Kang – n88_2004 – MYM 12

Necromancer is a perfectly heavyweight contender for the start of MYM 12, yes, but for the love of god, just because this set wasn’t posted in the thread doesn’t mean it shouldn’t get some love too. This is the only 3v1 exclusive set (No 1v1 mode at all) since Valozarg outside of the forgettable Hazama, and it doesn’t disappoint. Anything that one could say in favor of Dormammu being a good boss set because it’s a camper is crushed into the ground by this titan of a set, as not only does Kang have a massive array of projectiles while happening to be a boss, he’s be insanely unique as a camper if he was downpowered and made for 1v1. The Down Special is pretty much all you need to read before gaping in awe at this set. Kang’s set-ups are far more strategic than almost any other character, as he can potentially go back in time to relive these set-ups once he gets what he wants. From there, he can make elaborate set-ups in the future as his computer self fights foes in the past, essentially taking the simplistic nature of Sandslash hiding traps and making it even more brilliant. His otherwise generic soldiers are made much more interesting by their incredibly intelligent nature and Kang’s ability to equip them with weapons with his fsmash and usmash, giving each of his minions specific purposes in his master plan.

Hell, forget planning for the future – just going back into the past is a blast to start up a 6v2 match. You can’t call sets like Vile, Beezwax, or Dark Star “Bullet Hell” after reading this set – the sheer quantity of stuff going on when both Kangs are on-screen is simply staggering. Flaws? Perhaps the set is rather proppy with Kang pulling out a different weapon from a portal for almost all of his later moves, but even then it helps to contribute to the super competent all-powerful villain feel that boss sets so desperately need.



  1. M.Trinity boss set was better than my Shuma-Gorath one if only for the mechanic. That and Shuma’s was more or less slapped on to look cooler.

  2. Damn, am I glad you’re doing these again, Warlord. Most of all I’d like to see Top 20 Overpowered characters of all time in order to see which characters of MYM8, 9, 10, 11 and 12 deserve to join the ranks of your previous list, while the tackiest movesets list would also be fun to see. But in any case guess I’d have to wait for whatever you decide to do.

  3. I was wondering why the hell you kept Vlad’s Down Smash. I thought it was pretty blatant that it was filler until I came up with a better idea.

    The reason I didn’t finish Vlad was that I was trying to come up with some way to rework him to get it to fit altogether, otherwise I would have finished him myself. So I wouldn’t have minded at all if you had changed those moves awkwardly hanging on to the set, unless you had replaced them with something like bending the stage.

  4. Good to see these return. They were always the most reliable article with the best reread value.

    My general problem with many of these movesets is that while they do have interesting ideas for the boss mode dynamic, they aren’t executed in a satisfying way. Two examples of this are the concepts of flooding the screen with projectiles / duplicates, and locking one opponent out of the fight entirely. These are very shaky ideas and without some care, they would end up being incredibly frustrating in actual play. Just my opinion, though.

  5. Wait, Vlad had a boss mode??

  6. How the heck did you miss that? I thought it was your favorite set from MYMX Rool!

  7. This would imply Rool reads sets that he calls the best sets of their MYM, DM.

  8. To be fair, Rool probably avoids everything after the Playstyle section, just in case it turns out to be extras.

  9. All of the above is true.

  10. It’s funny reading the Kang part at the end of MYM12.

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