Fun With SF4 vol.1
After two months and five characters’ worth of TACVs, i thought everyone might enjoy something slightly less technical and considerably more accessible. Check back in a fortnight for C.Viper’s turn at the customary TACV treatment.
Until then, enjoy! As always, i hope you see something new.
0:08 His quick dash and fast lvl2 Focus Attack startup make Fei Long one of only three or four characters in the game who can link a dash-canceled lvl3 Focus Attack into a lvl2 Focus Attack before the opponent falls over, without requiring any interrupt setup. Fei’s command grab doesn’t increment the combo counter so the whole sequence only counts as six hits. As someone pointed out, the rest of the combo could have been nicer, but i happen to like fire Rekkas and there’s never a good reason to use them otherwise.
0:15 Cammy’s LK Cannon Spike connects for free after an anti-air lvl3 Focus Attack, then her HK Cannon Spike juggles on its own and her HK super adds one last hit. The trick to this combo is doing the LK Cannon Spike as early as possible so it hits near its peak.
0:22 Akuma’s EX Demon Flip automatically tracks the opponent’s position. Judging by this phenomenon, the target’s location must be determined one or two frames after it’s initiated. Since Sim’s position changes suddenly during his teleport, you can get EX Demon Flip to travel backwards over a long distance by executing it right as Dhalsim disappears. Then Sim has to dash forward to get within Akuma’s throw range. The corner helps Dhalsim teleport farther because his destination is based on a certain distance from the opposite side of the screen.
0:27 It’s hard to pinpoint exactly when it happens, but when Gouken’s HP fireball crosses the boundary at the top of the screen, its hitbox is nullified. Even though its graphic remains unchanged, the fireball can no longer hit anyone and Gouken is free to throw another one. In the first scenario, this happens before Dan’s air Taunt carries him safely through Gouken’s phantom HP fireball. Then Gouken waits until Dan jumps before throwing another HP fireball, so it never goes out of bounds before reaching Dan. All of Gouken’s fireballs create free juggle setups so it’s not surprising that the LP fireball juggles off the HP fireball.
0:32 Dhalsim’s EX fireball causes about half the cast to lean a certain way which delays the second impact until they’re done getting pushed back by the first hit. This gap gives Sim enough time to recover and link s.HP or any other long-range normal move. Obviously this only works midscreen because there is no pushback in the corner.
0:37 The first hit of Gen’s super instantly grounds the opponent so that the rest of it can connect. When Blanka’s HP ball trades with Gen’s HP super, Blanka recovers much sooner than Gen. Since superfreeze counts toward charge time, it’s easy to follow up with reversal HP ball for a two-hit combo. However, canceling into the super requires Blanka to be slightly closer than this setup puts him. He needs to take a quick step forward before starting the second HP ball so that he can cancel into HP super. This can be accomplished by holding forward for a split-second right as Blanka recovers from hit stun, before pressing HP and then slowly completing the rest of the super input.
0:45 At maximum HK super range, Chun Li easily has enough charge time to perform a second LP fireball right as the first one connects. The only problem is that all of her projectiles travel too slowly to reach opponents before they recover from hit stun. Using her 2-frame super fills the gap.
0:52 The only trick here is not to rush the ultra. If the LP super fireball connects with the right rhythm, Ryu should have plenty of time to tack on the ultra after teching the fall. Of course you still have to wait until the last hit of the super fireball disappears before you can do the ultra. Going for a reversal will usually give you a wayward uppercut. Adding the LP fireball before the super is optional.
1:00 Honda’s LP headbutt has a little startup invincibility but he still has a tough time hitting Sim’s s.HP cleanly. Once you get that part to work, the HP super should take care of the rest.
1:05 Zangief’s s.LP normally gives +1 advantage and his s.MP connects on the 5th frame. However, his jump attacks cause opponents to reel backward, so his s.LP doesn’t connect until much later than its first active frame. It’s essentually a mid-combo meaty setup. His far s.HK has 4 active frames and normally grants +2 advantage, which means it can generate up to +5 frame advantage if the last active frame connects. It looks like Ken gets up long before Gief’s s.HK hits him, but that’s only because Ken takes forever to stand up straight.
1:12 The only trick here is to perform Guile’s HK Flash Kick and his ultra as one smooth motion. Go from DB directly to UF+HK and then roll around slowly to DF then DB then UB then finally press KKK for the reversal ultra. A single charge can be spent on multiple moves in SF4 so there’s no recharging necessary. The main obstacle is executing the ultra command slowly enough to give Guile time to recover from hit stun.
1:21 Ken’s close s.MK to far s.MK link is the dopest way to show off his new kicks. This whole sequence was an elaborate excuse to record that simple combo. Gouken makes a useful dummy here because he’s a big target and his backward jump covers distance quickly.
1:26 Bison’s EX Psycho Crusher has the ability to nullify two projectile hits. Furthermore, when his flames successfully collide with an oncoming projectile, he gains the ability to Focus-cancel out of the EX torpedo even without it touching the opponent. He could even cancel into super if it didn’t require 125% meter. This clip demonstrates a sample obstacle course for Bison to run through. If anyone wants to record something more elaborate, i’d love to see it.
1:31 Discovering that Sagat’s LK fireball xx HK super behaved this way was what started this whole video production. It’s very easy to do but it’s a lot fun. His s.MP xx HP uppercut sets up the perfect corner distance for the ultra finisher.
1:46 Vega is the only character in SF4 who can combo an air throw from a lvl2 Focus Attack without an interrupt setup. Everyone else either dashes too slow or jumps too slow. However, it turns out Vega’s only way to combo into lvl2 Focus Attack is by canceling a counterhit claw stab from one of his roll specials.
1:51 Zangief’s whiffed HP super gives Balrog enough extra transit time to recharge for his own HP super after spending his first charge on HP dash punch. It’s possible to do tons of other elaborate recharge combos with Rog, but he can do all that normally. This is the only case which relies on the superfreeze charge trick. It would’ve been cool to follow meaty HK Dash Upper with LP Dash Straight canceled into super, but unfortunately all of Rog’s dash punches cause too much pushback for the LP Dash Straight to connect at minimum startup. He always needs to slide forward slightly before starting the punch, which kills the combo.
1:58 Same deal as the Gouken clip; Guile’s LP Sonic Boom gets functionally negated upon leaving the screen but its graphic remains. He throws another one and Abel’s HP super runs through both.
2:07 C.Viper’s LP super is slow between hits so it causes a lot of hit stun with each impact. Trading with Cammy’s s.LP gives Viper enough time to connect an LP ground pound and the rest is standard.
2:17 If you’ve ever tried hitting someone with Rufus’s c.HP at close range, you’ll have noticed how it pushes them way back before it ever connects. Whiffing c.HP right in front of Fei Long’s ultra creates a large gap between them, so the second punch misses Rufus completely.
2:25 El Fuerte’s far s.HK has the potential to hit twice, but it’s absurdly picky about when that’s allowed to happen. The first hit has significantly greater range than the second and it tends to cause opponents to reel away from the second hit. It only works against a handful of characters; most consistently against Bison. However, it requires a counterhit meaty setup. There are two ways to accomplish that. Either you knock Bison down and have him get up with a reversal special. Or you have him crouch under Fuerte’s far s.HK and then quickly execute a special move (in this case HP Psycho Crusher) so that he doesn’t stand up until he’s started the special.
2:33 Sakura’s MP uppercut has a juggle potential of one and her HP uppercut has a juggle potential of three. The trick to this combo is spacing out the hits of her MP uppercut so that the second one connects late. It helps to do the DP motion quickly so she doesn’t take a step forward. Other than that it’s simply a matter of finding the right timing, but you’ll recognize it as soon as you get it.
2:40 Sim’s DF+LP interrupts Rose’s LP fireball xx LP super and she recovers in time to connect an ultra before the last hit of her super knocks Sim down. In fact you can even hear the regular fireball and two hits of the super connect before ultrafreeze, followed by two hits before her scarf grabs Dhalsim. Fortunately, the timing works out perfectly when you start out a step inside maximum ultra range.
2:50 Dan’s vertical j.MP has a juggle potential of one. This whole combo is built around showcasing that gimmick. Also his back throw is funny and so is dashing twice, which isn’t particularly difficult after a lvl3 Focus Attack.
2:59 Gen’s lvl3 Focus Attack creates a free juggle state when it hits airborne Seth’s outstretched limb, so he gets to connect an HP super which creates another free juggle state for the PPP ultra. You can actually mash out the ultra after the super, but you have to swing the quarter-circles towards the right since Seth doesn’t pop over until after Gen recovers.
3:10 Seth’s wall jump momentum is preserved after his j.D+MK stomp, so he has enough speed to make it to the other edge of the screen. You have to stomp twice after the first wall jump. After that it’s easy to keep stomping once. Simply hold DR from the left side and DL from the right side before you reach each wall. To stomp twice at any point during the sequence, you can’t hold the directions beforehand. You must let Seth drop a little before bouncing off the wall. It’s somewhat difficult but worse than that it’s rather inconsistent, since the camera is tilting so much. Anyway it’s a lot of fun to stay airborne like this, so everyone should try it.
By the way, SF4 characters animate so fluidly whether standing or crouching, that it’s pretty easy to predict when the Training Mode dummy is going to play back an action based on how many stance cycles it goes through. If you want to try some of these tricks by yourself, especially if you want to record anything for a video, learn to spot these patterns. Always start your dummy recordings by tapping down to reset the animation cycle, then wait a few seconds to give yourself enough idle time for editing purposes.