Attack of the Fanboy

How to Fix Lag and Slowdown Issues in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Online

It's broke, so here's (kind of) how to fix it.

by Kyle Hanson


With SSBU, Nintendo once again dabbles in the realm of serious online gaming and once again falls far short of what is expected out of a game of this caliber. As we point out in our review, many games of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate online multiplayer result in lag, latency, slowdown riddled matches. While a lot of this is at the core of the netcode and other parts the player can’t help, there are some tips that help deliver better matches. Here’s our best tricks for how to fix lag and slowdown issues on Super Smash Bros. Ultimate online multiplayer.

Before we get into the meat I want to reiterate that many, if not most of the issues you encounter online with SSBU will be out of your control. The game utilizes peer to peer networking, meaning players aren’t communicating with a central server, they are instead talking between themselves with one player often acting as “host”. This means that if the other players have poor connections, you will experience lag and latency which manifest as slowdown during the game. You can’t change their connection or the underlying netcode, but you can help things on your end somewhat.

The first and most important tip is to utilize a wired connection. The Nintendo Switch doesn’t have an ethernet jack on it though, so how is this done? With a USB adapter of course. There’s an official one out there, but honestly you can use almost any USB ethernet adapter. It doesn’t even need to be USB 3.0, since that is disabled on the Switch as of now, though you should probably get one just in case. Get this adapter and hook it to your Dock and you should start to see some improvement in your Super Smash Bros. Ultimate online matches.

The other tip is a bit less helpful. Due to the poor netcode and p2p connections, your best way to experience SSBU online is to stick to one on one matches, likely against a friend. Battle Arenas are actually pretty cool in many ways, so setting one up and only letting one other person in is the best way to get a solid 1v1 match going. Limiting the number of players eliminates variables like the other players’ home connections, so it can be a big help.

Unfortunately that’s the only tips we have for how to fix lag and slowdown on Super Smash Bros. Ultimate for the time being. Complaints are flooding in about this feature and its many issues, so the hope is that Nintendo takes notice and releases some patches to make it a better experience. Until then, just try out the things above and share your own tips in the comments below.

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