Flame Choke replaces Gerudo Dragon as Ganondorf's Side Special Move in Super Smash Bros. Brawl. When used, Ganondorf charges at his opponent, similarly to Gerudo Dragon, but he grabs the opponent by the neck and attacks them with a dark pulse, before slamming them into the ground.
Once he makes the grab, he cannot be knocked out of it (he has super armor while he has an opponent in his grip. This allows Ganondorf to, for example, snag a passing Wario off his motorcycle). It can be quickly followed up by a quick attack, such as Neutral Attack and Down Tilt. Being a grab move, this move works through shields and counters.
When the move is used in midair, both Ganondorf and the grabbed foe are launched directly towards to the ground, which can cause Ganoncide. If Ganondorf performs this move in the air while going through a soft platform (half body above platform and half below) then he will grab the opponent also performing a Ganoncide. However, he has no knockback resistance in the air. This makes it difficult to chase him off the edge, because as a last resort, he takes the opponent down with him, which can be particularly beneficial if Ganondorf is a stock/point up. Also, when Ganondorf does the move in the air, he can slightly alter its path, slamming the foe more to the left, or more to the right. It can be reversed by quickly tapping the control stick in the opposite direction.
If this is used while on the ground with the opponent near the edge of the stage, it can "Meteor Smash" the opponent straight down off of the edge, However, this is not very useful, as it has set knockback and is too weak to prevent most characters from recovering. They will also grab the ledge if possible.
Unlike Captain Falcon's Raptor Boost, this move does not cause Ganondorf to trip and fall if he misses on the ground. It does, however, still put him into a helpless state if he uses it in the air. If Ganondorf is too close to an edge when he uses the move on the ground, he will instantly go into a helpless state and fall, the same as Captain Falcon's Raptor Boost. However, unlike Captain Falcon, Ganondorf has a chance to move towards the ledge and grab it (if it can be grabbed) before he falls to his death.
|Ganondorf's Special Moves|
|Standard Special Move:||Warlock Punch|
|Side Special Move:||Gerudo Dragon (SSBM), Flame Choke (SSBB)|
|Up Special Move:||Dark Dive|
|Down Special Move:||Wizard's Foot|
|Final Smash1:||Beast Ganon|
|1: In Super Smash Bros. Brawl only.|
Ganondorf performs a similar rushing move in Twilight Princess that kills one of the sages who impaled him, though lacking the dark flames. In the GameCube version of Twilight Princess, Ganondorf uses his right hand, which is inscribed with the Triforce of Power, whereas in Brawl, he uses his left hand. Ganondorf's slight ambidextrous capabilities in Brawl are likely due to the mirrored Wii version of Twilight Princess.
- Unlike some other special grabs such as Force Palm, Flame Choke can't be escaped from even if the victim is giant, neither the grounded or air version.
- The whole screen shakes when Flame Choke is used on the victim.
- Depending which stage it's used on, the aerial variation may have different effects. On Norfair, Ganondorf can bounce in the lava but the trapped opponent doesn't bounce on it on the first hit. On certain portions of Port Town Aero Dive, it's possible to have Ganondorf survive while the other character is dragged off the screen. On other stages, both characters or neither may be KOd.
- In Home-run Contest, if used on the Sandbag, the move will fail. Ganondorf will pass through the Sandbag just like any other grab-related special on any other item.
- Ganondorf players still tend to refer to this move as the "Gerudo", as in "Gerudo Dragon", his previous Side-B special.
- Flame Choke bears a resemblance to the "Kototsuki Yō/In" special moves used by Kyō Kusanagi and Iori Yagami in SNK Playmore's "The King of Fighters" series. All three special moves involve the attacker charging at the enemy in some fashion, grabbing them and forcing them to explode in a burst of flames. The ground version of Flame Choke indeed resembles Kyō's in that Ganondorf lifts his victim off of the ground and the aerial version wherein Ganondorf slams the opponent into the ground headfirst resembles Iori's. Furthermore, both Ganondorf and Iori's flames are purple in colour.