Super Smash Bros Ultimate tournaments across the country are making ol' Minecraft Steve illegal after the discovery of a potentially game-breaking new technique.
Last week, clips of a new Steve technique started sweeping through the Smash community. Labeled 'Phantom MLG,' the technique lets Steve players escape hitstun on many moves. That means that Steve can escape from multihit combos, and strike back against opposing characters while they're still recovering from the move they've just performed. In the fighting game parlance, it effectively gives Steve armor. You can see a proper breakdown of the move in the video below.
Have you seen the Steve hitstun canceling clips floating around?Did you hope they were fake?Well sorry to burst your bubble!Introducing Phantom MLG: pic.twitter.com/OJ2GIM5EnvFebruary 25, 2023
Naturally, that is not a technique many players want to compete against, and following PMLG's discovery, much of the Smash community was calling for Steve to be banned from tournaments. Those bans started happening pretty quickly, and now Steve is banned - or at least restricted - across many states in the US scene. Now that Smash legend Juan 'Hungrybox' DeBiedma has announced Steve's ban at Coinbox, the tournament series he organizes, it seems likely that many more will follow suit.
While the banhammer is coming down hard and fast, there remains some debate on just how useful PMLG actually is. While it looks flashy in clips, it's difficult to pull off. You have to prime the move, set yourself up to be hit by an opponent's attack, and execute your PMLG with perfect timing. It only works when Steve is at low damage, too. Steve mains (opens in new tab) argue (opens in new tab) that the technique is useful, but not truly game-breaking.
Steve Legality Map (03/01/23.) More distinctions made to better represent the situation and hopefully way fewer errors. pic.twitter.com/5tkgkSU4ZoMarch 1, 2023
The court of public opinion has seemingly already made its ruling, though, and it's not looking good for Steve. Smash Ultimate has not received an update since December 2021, so it's unlikely a patch will end PMLG. It remains to be seen what this means for Steve's future in competitive Smash.
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