Zero Suit Samus is by far my favorite character to use in Brawl. She is a very fast character and can hold her own against most of the cast without problems. I haven't played Brawl nor used ZSS in awhile, so bare with me...
-Very agile character, second only to Sonic and Captain Falcon. Also tied with Sheik for third fastest running speed.
-Decent aerial game
-Above average recovery
-Can Wall Jump
-Long range grab
-Has 2 very good meteor smash moves
-Flip Jump is useful for getting out of tight situations
-Very light character, can easily be KO'd at 90% and above.
-Attacks are fairly weak compared to other characters
-Grab has long recovery if missed
-Very susceptible to edgehogging
-Neutral A (x3): Basic jab combo, has knockback on 3rd hit. First attack can cancel into her tilts.
-Forward Tilt: Roundhouse kick, causes characters to fall if hit by the tip. Attack hits high or low depending if you use a diagonal direction.
-Down Tilt: Double leg sweep, knocks characters away into the air. Jump cancelable.
-Up Tilt: Headstand kick that knocks enemies into the air, hits twice, can cancel into specials.
-Dash A: Running kick, can be used multiple times in succession.
-Aerial Neutral A: Swings her plasma whip in an arc around her body. Has a weird hitbox as it can hit both directly in front of Samus and behind.
-Aerial Back Tilt: Samus performs a powerful back kick. Strong knockback and usually your go to move for KO's.
-Aerial Up Tilt: An aerial flip kick that knocks enemies upward, can be used to juggle opponents. Has some KO potential too.
-Aerial Forward Tilt: A double kick with good range, second kick has KO potential.
-Aerial Down Tilt: Samus kicks toward the ground, falling at a fast speed diagonally. Hits twice, once in the air and after slamming on the ground. Bad recovery if missed on the ground. Very bad move if used outside of stage boundaries as you can't control Samus until the attack finishes. Can also spike opponents.
-Forward Smash: Samus swings her plasma whip. Large hitbox with slow recovery, can KO at very high percentages if sweetspotted.
-Down Smash: Samus discharges a blast of energy from her gun directly in front of her, stunning her opponent. Stuns enemies longer if charged.
-Up Smash: Samus swings her whip above her head. Hits multiple times.
-Neutral B: Samus shoots a small taser blast from her gun. Has small range if not charged. Can stun opponents, stun lasts longer if charged.
-Up B: Samus shoots her whip in the air and quickly retracts it. Very useful recovery move with great range. Can spike opponents (even at low %) if sweetspotted.
-Forward B: Samus extends her whip forward with a...flaming ball thing at the tip. Opponents can be knocked into the ball from touching the whip. Has good KO potential when not nerfed by (usage?) scaling. Also ZSS second tether recovery move, covers great horizontal distance when used to recover.
-Down B: Samus flashes and performs a flip jump over her opponents. Useful for recovery as she can jump off opponent's heads, sending her over a large horizontal distance. Pressing B while Samus flashes results in a kick that can be used to spike (also at low %), and has KO potential.
-Samus reequips her Power Suit with a mysterious energy. Can suck in opponents wandering too close, but other than that it probably won't hit anyone.
ZSS is a very nimble character and as such, using her effectively revolves around making use of her speed. A lot of her normals are quick and weak, but allow you to build up damage over time. Her U-tilt and D-tilt can lead to some serious aerial combos as well. Proper spacing with ZSS revolves around using her Forward B special, though you should preserve it as much as possible since the game scales damage and knockback on repeated moves. Using her aerial attacks to approach is also a good idea, both her B-Air and F-Air are powerful moves and can be used to set up aerial combos. Stay away from using her F-Smash too often since this move can easily be punished if it's whiffed. Using her U-Air is a great way to juggle and build up damage. The best part of ZSS however, is her stun moves. Knowing how and when to stun can lead to devastating combos and even perhaps an early KO.
My memory is a bit hazy on this section so I'll just use some basic combos for now.
-Dash A > D-Smash > Grab > Forward Throw > Dash Grab > Down Throw > Shorthop > U-Air > Jump > U-Air > sweetspot Up-B once under opponent > D-Smash > F-Smash
There are a lot of variations in this combo after the second D-Smash. You could follow up with a grab and continue or jump behind your opponent and follow up with a B-Air.
-Neutral A (x3) > Dash A > D-Tilt > Jump > F-Air
-Shorthop > N-Air > Dash A > D-Smash > Grab > Back Throw > Dash A > F-Smash
More to come as I experiment...
I'll do character specific matchups later but for now I'll just do a general overview.
ZSS is a very powerful character both on the stage and in the air. Her recovery options also make her a tricky opponent to KO. She does very well against some of the slower characters such as Link and Zelda, but can have a hard time against powerhouses like Ike, Bowser, and Ganondorf if you're not careful. Smaller characters can give her trouble as well considering their small hitboxes. When fighting against faster characters (Sonic and Cap. Falcon), try to keep up with them as they will be moving around just as much, if not more than you.
More to come ^^"
This guide has been edited by SuperGamecube64 to include an image for use on the front page. Tanis' thoughts have not been changed.