In Super Smash Bros Ultimate, there are three main ways to unlock characters. You can unlock them by just spending time with the game, since new characters challenge you roughly every ten minutes or so. You can unlock them through challenges and miscellaneous modes, with Classic Mode alone having a long sequence of unlocks based on which character you’ve used and how many times you’ve beaten it.
And you can use World of Light to do so too. That’s because this adventure mode has battles against every fighter on the roster, and any you unlock there get added to the list you can select elsewhere.
However, the locations of these fighters can be hard to find to say the least. Add to this how poorly done most guides are (due to either being text/video only or simply lacking in information), and it can be a nightmare to find the last few you’re missing here.
So we’re here to fix that, with the only character guide you’ll ever need! Let’s get started!
The World of Light
Beginning with the first main map in the game, the World of Light. Here’s a picture showing where each one can be found in the main map:
As well as another set for every submap accessible from it. You’ll also find a few puzzle solutions too, in case you’re stuck finding Zapfish in the Power Plant or tracking down Rathalos in Forest Hill. Here are the maps needed there:
Note that this has two sections, hence the two maps below.
Character Locations (text)
We’ve also got some text based information on their locations too, in case you prefer reading some descriptions over checking maps:
- Bowser: Defeat Giga Bowser in Magma Castle
- Captain Falcon: Find him on the F-Zero track, then defeat him in battle
- Captain Olimar: Use a magic user to make the missing Mushroom appear (Kammy Koopa and Viridi seem to work here), then beat him in battle
- Diddy Kong: Complete the Kongo Jungle submap, and defeat him at the end (where the banana horde is)
- Donkey Kong: Fight and defeat him in the jungle
- Dr Mario: Find and defeat him on a cloud near the centre of the map
- Duck Hunt Duo: Find and defeat them in the dark forest area
- Falco: Defeat him in the space zone, accessible via Arwing
- Fox: You can find him just south of the lake shaped like a heart. Defeat him to unlock him, as per usual.
- Ice Climbers: Defeat them at the bottom of the snowy peak area, where the dark forest meets the mountains.
- Inkling: Find and defeat them in Lumiose City
- Isabelle: Take Kapp’n’s bus to the dead end area to the top right of the second city on the map
- Jigglypuff: He’s between Lumiose City and the smaller town to the right, on top of a cliff.
- King Dedede: Get 11 pieces of food in the Gourmet Race, then challenge him on the podium at the end
- Kirby: You start the game as him.
- Link: To the south left of where you start, there’s a hilly area with a shop and a green pipe. Link can be found on top of the hill.
- Little Mac: Complete the Power Plant to unlock the gates, then defeat him in the area behind a gate to the right of Lumiose City
- Lucas: Find and defeat him in the small town to the left of the dark woods area.
- Mario: Beat the first Spirit battle
- Marth: When you reach the crossroads, head left and defeat him in battle
- Mega Man: Defeat the Spirit guarding his encounter just outside of the base submap
- Mii Gunner: Defeat him on the Alola Islands to the south east of the map
- Mii Swordfighter: Defeat him to the north of the city above the F-Zero track
- Mr Game & Watch: Find and defeat him in the Pac Maze area.
- Ness: Take the brown pipe to the cloud area based on Magicant, then defeat him on the path to the right.
- Pac-Man: Fight and defeat him to the left area with the giant mushrooms
- Peach: Activate all the switches in Magma Castle, then find and defeat her near the top right of the map
- Pichu: Defeat him in the Power Plant
- Pikachu: Ride the currents downstream in the centre of the map, then defeat him in battle on the island you land on
- Pit: At the end of the temple submap
- Pokémon Trainer: You can find him just south of the entrance to the Kongo Jungle submap, right to the south east of the Pac Maze area. Defeat him to unlock him (and open the path northwards)
- Ryu: Complete the Street Fighter map accessible via the airport, then beat him in battle
- Samus: Defeat her outside the Pac Maze to the right of the map
- Sheik: At the crossroads, head north and defeat him in battle
- Shulk: Defeat him on the rocky mountain to the right of the map
- Simon: Fight and defeat him in the temple submap. You can find him on the left side of the first portion.
- Snake: Unlock the 5th gate in the base submap, then head to the far top left of the area
- Toon Link: Find and defeat him in Forest Hill, accessed via the Alola Islands at the bottom right of the map
- Villager: When you reach the crossroads, head right and defeat him in battle
- Yoshi: Follow the mountain path out to the right of Lumiose City. You’ll find him there.
- Zero Suit Samus: Defeat her at Death Mountain, to the far right of the map
Finally, here are some quick FAQs for the issues that stumped us in our run-through:
1. How can I open the gate to Little Mac?
By completing the Power Plant submap. However, you don’t do that by merely defeating Pichu (like we thought you would), but by clearing the final battle with the Great Zapfish spirit. This will open all the red gates on the overworld and pave the way to the Little Mac fight.
2. What spirit do I need to reach the airport and unlock Ryu?
You need Kapp’n. You can find him at the spot marked on the map below:
3. Hell, what submaps are there in this world anyway?
There are the following submaps:
- The Base (Metal Gear themed, contains fight against Galleom)
- Molten Castle (Mario themed, contains fight with Giga Bowser)
- Kongo Jungle (Donkey Kong themed, eventually lets you unlock Diddy Kong)
- Airport/World Map (Street Fighter themed, has battle against Ryu)
- Forest Hill (Loosely based on Monster Hunter, contains Rathalos as a boss)
- Sky Temple (Kid Icarus themed, lets you get Simon and Pit)
- Power Plant (Splatoon themed, has Pichu. Beating it unlocks red gates)
- Gourmet Race (has King Dedede at the end, obviously Kirby themed)
4. How do I unlock King Dedede in the Gourmet Race map?
You need to get 11 food items. This is done by following the path below:
- Go up at the start
- Then go up again for a pear
- Cross the blocks at the top
- Go down the next path for a bowl of soup
- Continue straight for a cola
- Head down the next path for a baguette
- Head right and collect what looks like tea
- Before going down the next path for a salad
- Go straight back up the next path
- Then up the next path for a loaf of bread
- Continue right for an apple
- Head up the next fork in the road for a kebab
- Continue right for a roast chicken
- Before getting the grapes just prior to the finish line
Do that, and you should get enough food to fight King Dedede. If you’re still stuck, well here’s the map again. Go down the path marked in red:
5. What path do I need to use to reach Mr Game & Watch in the Pac Maze area?
From the left entrance:
- Head straight, then down to a fork in the road
- Take the right side teleport
- Head straight down to the next teleport
That should put you in front of Mr Game & Watch (though you’ll need to beat Nikki’s spirit first)
That wraps up the first part of the game anyway. Onto the Dark Realm!
The Dark Realm
Cause as we all know, this game doesn’t stop once you beat Galeem. Instead, Dharkon takes over and sends you here, complete with more fighters to collect and bosses to defeat. What, you thought you’d only unlock half the roster before the final boss? Oh please.
So here’s a map of the main area showing the character locales here:
As well as for the submaps:
The Sacred Land:
Plus, here are all character locations in text form.
- Bowser Jr: Defeat him in the north right of the Sacred Ground map (near where you encounter Ganondorf)
- Chrom: Jump into the treasure chest in the Lost Woods (in the Sacred Realm submap) to reach the area with his encounter
- Cloud: Defeat Zelda in the Sacred Land map to open the way to the Master Sword. Right before it, you’ll encounter Cloud. Defeat him to add him to your party.
- Corrin: After defeating Greninja in the Mysterious Dimension, head right and across the clouds to find Corrin. Defeat him in battle to unlock him.
- Dark Pit: Find and battle him on the roof of the far right side of Dracula’s Castle. He’s just to the right of the Boo spirit battle.
- Daisy: At the top left of the Dracula’s Castle submap. Defeat Dry Bowser to reach the cannon required to rescue her.
- Ganondorf: Get the Master Sword in the Sacred Land submap to unlock the ‘dark’ part of the map (the top of the Triforce), then defeat him at the very tip of the area.
- Greninja: He’s on the main path you travel in the Mysterious Dimension submap.
- Incineroar: In the Dark Realm, head down and left towards the Sacred Land submap, but turn right at the last split in the road.
- Ike: He’s on the main path you travel in the Mysterious Dimension submap.
- Ken: He’s on a balcony in Dracula’s Castle, guarded by a ghost and the Akuma spirit. Once you’ve cleared the way, defeat him in battle.
- King K Rool: At the top right of the Mysterious Dimension submap, you’ll find a pirate ship. Defeat the Risky Boots spirit there to reach K Rool, then beat him as normal.
- Lucina: Defeat the Omega Ridley Spirit battle near the Dracula’s Castle submap entrance, then defeat her in battle
- Luigi: Defeat the spirit for Link from the original Legend of Zelda in the Mysterious Dimension, then cross the path to the left to the flames to find Luigi. You know the drill now.
- Meta Knight: He’s on the main path you travel in the Mysterious Dimension submap
- Mewtwo: In the Mysterious Dimension submap, you’ll eventually be asked what enemy Kirby cannot inhale. Answer Whispy Woods to open the path to Mewtwo, then defeat him in battle.
- Mii Brawler: Set the clock in the Sacred Land to 4:40, then defeat him when he appears in the dead end path near the bottom left of the area
- Richter: Defeat all the ghosts in Dracula’s Castle, then defeat him in the Castle Keep.
- Ridley: Defeat the Creature and Flea Man in the Dracula’s Castle submap, then go down the new ladder added to the mineshaft area to face him.
- ROB: In the Mysterious Dimension submap, you’ll be asked which character sells furniture. Answer Redd, then defeat him in the landfill type area to the right of the map.
- Robin: In the clock tower in Dracula’s Castle, just before the path to the Castle Keep.
- Rosalina: Just before the Mysterious Dimension submap entrance in the Dark Realm, the path splits into 4. The far right side goes to the submap entrance, the far left one goes to a treasure chest, and the second one from the left has Rosalina at the end of it. Defeat her here to unlock her as a character.
- Sonic: Defeat him on the path between the Master Sword and the Lost Woods/village area of the Sacred Realm submap
- Wario: He can be found just before the ladder to the basement area in the Dracula’s Castle submap, past a barricade. Remove said barricade by hitting the lever to the right of the Reaper and Reapette battle.
- Wolf: In the Mysterious Dimension, you’ll be asked which spirit is a scientist. Answer Andross and then defeat his spirit to access the plane to the left of the map, where you’ll find Wolf.
- Young Link: In the Lost Woods, follow the instruction to remove the log at the bottom right corner, then defeat him in battle.
- Zelda: Set the clock in the village area of the Sacred Land map to 12:10 (see picture), then defeat Impa’s Spirit in the centre area. This removes the rock from the left side of the map, and lets you fight against Zelda.
- Dark Samus: Head left (towards Dharkon) then defeat her on the map
- Roy: Head right (towards Galeem) then defeat him on the map
- Bayonetta: You can find her on the path to Crazy Hand. Defeat her to unlock her as a playable character.
- Palutena: You can find her on the path to Master Hand. Again, defeat her to unlock her as a playable character.
- The three main character maps (World of Light, Dark Realm and Final Battle) are from Super Smash Bros Wiki.
- Extra map icons are from Splatoon 2, Super Mario World, Mario Kart Wii and New Super Mario Bros 2.
- Everything else is custom made for this site.
That plus the map should be all you need, but here are a few FAQs none the less.
Dark Realm FAQs
1. Okay, how the hell do I even get through the clock face to reach the entrance to Dracula’s Castle?
Follow the path below. We know, Nintendo’s pathing is utterly terrible, and it’s confusing as all hell.
2. How do I even get past the clock tower?
Set up the barrier below so the cannonball bounces up and destroys the gears. This lets you take out two ghosts with one cannonball, and changes the geography of the area in a way that makes the final ghost possible to destroy.
3. How do I unlock Richter in Dracula’s Castle?
Use the cannonballs to defeat all the ghosts. Once you do that, he’ll appear in the throne room.
4. How do I hit that last ghost on a balcony?
Make sure the cannon marked in the picture below is pointing in that way, then fire. It’ll ricochet up and hit the pesky ghost.
5. What do I need to do to reach Chrom in the Lost Woods?
Jump into the treasure chest with A. It’s an odd puzzle, but remember, this ain’t a Zelda game.
6. What about Young Link?
Follow the path marked in red below:
The invisible bit can be a tad finicky unfortunately.
7. How do I reach the Mii Swordfighter?
Put 4:40 into the clock by lighting the torches. This will make him appear in the dead end to the south east.
8. So… which hand is the hour hand again?
The inner torches represent the hours, and the outer ones represent the minutes (in intervals of 5). Yes, I know it’s confusing. Logic says the outer ones would be the hours and the inner ones the minutes, not the other way around.
But Nintendo doesn’t like logic.
9. What does it mean by dive in with courage?
Dive into the pond. This transports you to a side area where you’ll face Saria’s spirit, and beating her is a necessary step towards unlocking Young Link.
10. I missed someone on the first map. How do I go back?
Head back to the centre of the main Dark Realm hub. Then jump into the southern portal to go back to the World of Light.
And that should just about wrap up the Dark Realm for now. But hang on, if you followed this guide, you should still four characters short of a full roster. Where are they?
Well, they’re in the final world map! Let’s get to it!
The Final Showdown
As per usual, here’s the map:
However, only two fighters can be unlocked at the start. Here’s how to get them:
Once you’ve done that, you may be wondering how to proceed from here. Well basically, you need to now defeat every other spirit on the map here, which will cause Master Hand and Crazy Hand to appear on the sides near Galeem and Dharkon respectively.
On the path to these two are the final two fighters…
And that’s it. You’ve now unlocked everyone in World of Light. It’s not the quickest way to get all the fighters (nor the most convenient), but it’s necessary to use them in said mode none the less, and it’s a nice challenge for anyone who’s up to it.
Still, onto the final FAQ…
The Final Battle FAQ
1. What do you mean you need to beat every spirit to access the last two fighters?
As I said, you need to beat all the spirits on the last map to reach the true final boss, and the last two spirits are on the paths necessary to get to that true final boss.
2. Don’t you need to max out the skill tree or something?
No. Unfortunately, a lot of walkthroughs for this game put out by large gaming sites are kinda poorly written in this respect, and have made it seem like the skill tree is relevant to the final boss and ending you get. It isn’t.
Instead, the ‘tree’ not being too unbalanced refers to how many spirits you’ve beaten on the final map. Beat too many near Galeem, and you’ll only be able to fight Galeem and get a bad ending. Beat too many near Dharkon, you’ll only be able to fight him and get a bad ending.
Beating all the spirits opens up the fights with Master Hand and Crazy Hand, and it’s their work (after they’re freed) which opens up the path to the true final boss.
3. Finally, why should I even unlock characters in World of Light anyway? You did say there were quicker ways…
Yeah, there are quicker ways.
To unlock them outside of World of Light. However, World of Light doesn’t carry over the roster you’ve unlocked elsewhere, so any characters you unlock via other means will need to be unlocked again in World of Light in order to use them in said mode.
So you’ll have to follow this guide at some point or another. Better get them here now rather than having to unlock them a second time later.
Either way, that’s it from this guide. Hope you found it useful, and we’ll be back with a few more Super Smash Bros Ultimate guides in future.
Tell us if we missed anything in the comments below or on social media today!