Archive for September, 2009

What Are Meaty Attacks?

September 29th, 2009 4 comments

When any attack connects, it puts the opponent into hit stun for a certain number of frames. Whether or not you can combo after that attack depends on how much sooner your character recovers compared to the opponent. Some attacks have a lot of frame advantage built in, such as Ryu’s c.MP. In most games that punch animation ends four or five frames before the opponent’s hit stun finishes, so linking c.MK for a two-hit combo is simple.

On the other hand, Ryu’s c.HP usually has significant frame disadvantage. Even though it causes more hit stun (due to being a fierce) than c.MP does, it also has way more recovery time. However, Ryu’s c.HP is active for an extremely long period of time – from the beginning of the attack until just before he starts pulling his fist down. When his fist connects on the first active frame, the remaining active frames essentially become recovery frames. - Fighting Game Combos, Tutorials, Matches, Screenshots, and Strategy

If you can find a way to get that c.HP to connect later than its first active frame, it would give you (roughly) the same amount of hit stun but with less recovery time. This is what’s known as performing a “meaty” attack. It has nothing to do with distance. It’s all about timing. The more initial active frames you can avoid, the meatier the attack becomes. When you make it connect on its last active frame, you’ve found the meatiest possible timing.

The most basic meaty setup is knocking down an opponent and attacking as they rise. Since they’re fully invincible during wakeup, you can start your attack early and bypass a bunch of active frames while the opponent tries to stand up. In fact, SFA2 Ryu can link c.HK after a meaty c.HP using this method.

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Categories: Technical Tags:

Tiers and You: The Survivor’s Guide

September 26th, 2009 4 comments

Today i’d like explore a phenomenon that has become something of an alarming fascination among the fighting game community: tiering and ranking characters. When a new game comes out, everyone picks their favorite character and arrives at a certain style of play which seems to produce competitive success. Then someone hosts a gathering or tournament, and these differing styles clash. Immediately everyone witnesses the crowning of a particular approach as “the way the game is supposed to be played.”

Based on this information (and countless contests of Forum Theory Fighter), the community drafts a list of character rankings grouped by dominance. These tiers are built from the top down, starting from the character who best embodies “the way the game is supposed to be played.”

If the community decides that the game is based on Low Fierce, then (CvS2) Sagat and Blanka find themselves at the top. If the community decides that the game is based on AHVB, then (MvC2) Cable finds himself at the top. If the community decides that the game is based on Back+Fierce, then (3S) Chun Li finds herself at the top. Everyone else’s worth is determined by how well they can cope with the kings (or queens) of the hill.

Now it’s very easy to get tricked into a desperate situation where conventional wisdom forces you to give up on your perferred character. The trouble is, if that character speaks to you then you could be giving up on a massive opportunity to carve out your own niche. Why downgrade to conventional knowledge when it goes against your play style and your instincts? It’s always going to feel slightly awkward.

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Categories: Strategy Tags:

Weekly Screenshot: Electric Psycho Blaze

September 24th, 2009 2 comments

Naming these is already beginning to get annoying. Maybe i should start posting them without a title and adopt the best suggestion?


SFA3 A-Bison’s lvl3 Psycho Crusher startup against A-Dhalsim’s lvl3 Yoga Stream, as Bison is rising from Dhalsim’s sweep. The lightning effect comes from randomized background animations. This looked the best out of all the ones i saw, at least for this particular scene.

I’ll probably have more later, since four different Shadaloo characters use Bison’s purple rain stage. I keep having to resist the urge to reuse various poses of that Psycho Crusher super in a bunch of screenshots. It looks ridiculously awesome in Alpha 3, especially in stills. It’s too bad they never updated the Marvel version after A3 came out.

Categories: Screenshots Tags:

SF? Ryu Exhibition Guide, Part 3

September 22nd, 2009 2 comments

Here are the last ten SF? Ryu Exhibition (Evo2k9+OHN8) combo writeups for your reading pleasure. Also works great as an all-natural remedy for insomnia.

3:20 / XvSF This is the only case where one clip transitions into the middle of another combo, but nothing happens before the Shinkuu Tatsumaki Senpukyaku. It always registers 18 hits. Like many characters in the game, Ryu can perform air combo links as well as chains, especially using light attacks. His j.U+MK is great for setting up throws due to the way it floats opponents upward instead of knocking them away. XSF lets you resuperjump after certain air maneuvers, including air pushblocking and air throws. Juggernaut is so huge that he gets hit by Ryu’s HK air Hurricane Kick in both directions. He also causes a lot of attacks to go the wrong way and then gets hit by these backwards attacks. Comboing into ground throws is possible if you make an airborne opponent’s last hit stun frame coincide with the frame where they bounce off the ground. The last two hits are escapable since Juggernaut can tech roll. The combo effectively ends with the second throw, but i just wanted to show how close Juggernaut was to getting dizzy.

3:36 / CFE As you can guess from Ryu’s sprite, CFE is based on the CvS engine. Shinkuu Hadoken behaves the same way here as in the CvS series. Making it pass through Hydron’s MK Tadpole Spawn strips away its first hit, which allows the remaining four hits to juggle after Ryu’s c.HK sweep. Hydron’s c.HK then reaches into Ryu’s LP red FB as late as possible. Combined with the counterhit bonus, Ryu has barely enough time to link into F+MP.

3:44 / SSF2 This clip illustrates three vastly different meaty setups. It starts with Balrog’s HK Dash Upper running into Ryu’s extended s.LK, which he links into c.HK. The second combo uses a basic wakeup meaty to eliminiate the gap between the two hits of Ryu’s close s.HK. This provides no extra frame advantage on the second hit, but does effectively eliminate the pushback from the first hit. Ryu stays close enough to link far s.HP to dizzy Balrog. In the last combo, Ryu extends his far s.MK in front of Balrog as he leans back due to his dizzy animation. By the time he leans forward to get hit, the s.MK is on its last active frame. This leaves Ryu with a lot of frame advantage, which he uses to walk forward and link far s.MP xx HP red FB midscreen.

3:55 / SF3:NG SF3 Ryu is a lot bigger and taller than SF2 Ryu, but the difference is much less noticeable when they’re crouching. This clip was built to show off my two favorite things about SFIII: Ryu’s forward throw animation and the step he takes during Joudan Sokutou Geri startup. The rest of it is made of interesting links and a little choreographed sequence between Ryu and Alex. This is the only clip in the video to use altered damage settings. The Damage Level is set to two stars in the Game Option menu and both characters are given a five star Handicap in Versus Mode. Otherwise Alex dies too soon, and the whole point of the combo is to show Ryu’s HK Joudan Sokutou Geri in slow motion.

4:43 / SFEX+a Ryu needed to start on the right side in order for his whiffed HP Shoryuken to face forward, matching the SF3 Shin Shoryuken sprite. The SFEX series has a lot of interesting links, such as Ryu’s s.HK, c.MK combo shown here. His Hurricane Kick maxes out at three hits, which becomes four in SFEX2. As a throwback to World Warrior, SFEX Ryu’s Shinkuu Hadoken randomly comes out red.

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Categories: Transcripts Tags:

Week-One Combos: Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2

September 22nd, 2009 4 comments

Not entirely sure what possessed me to do this but it turned out more or less sort of okay:

Every clip was recorded within the bland Simulator Disc training facility, so don’t worry about plot spoilers. During the Basic Training tutorial stage, enemies are immune to (nearly) all kinds of damage except whatever’s listed in the prompt. This is useful because it’s hard to set up camera angles for combos in 3D games. Another benefit to the tutorial is that your teammates (usually) keep quiet so you don’t have to worry about them killing your punching bags.

If anyone wants to try these combos, i’ve written out the Xbox 360 commands below. That’s the version i used, but i doubt the PS3 version is any different, aside from the button labels.

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Categories: Non-Fighters Tags: