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CvS2 Combo Dummy Lineup
When it comes to developing innovative situational combos, there's more to opponent selection than locating the fattest character in the roster. Without proper setup instruments, even the most promising ideas can go to waste. Assembled below is a comprehensive directory of indispensably useful combo dummies, grouped with respect to their key roles and noteworthy benefits.
However, it is important to remember that numerous alternative candidates exist outside these narrow boundaries, representing countless unique traits and resources. Should the upper echelon of any class fall short, it never hurts to give the unconventional puppets a chance. Unlikely sparring partners such as Athena, M.Bison, Rugal, or Yamazaki can sometimes reveal the ideal blend of underappreciated, sub-optimal features to remedy an otherwise hopeless situation.
Horizontal Hit Box Width: Zangief, Rolento
The overall widest standing and crouching hit boxes both belong to Zangief, whose 80-point stun limit provides ample challenges to match. The fattest character in the minimal 60-point crowd is Rolento. Despite Zangief's noticeable size advantage, Rolento is much easier to kill with one combo due in part to his superior mobility and versatility.
Vertical Hit Box Height: Sagat, Raiden, Chang
Sagat is clearly the tallest fighter around, but he's not among the largest. As the tallest fat character on hand, Chang sometimes offers a more suitable balance of horizontal and vertical dimensions. For the sake of completeness it's worth noting that Raiden is considered the tallest crouched character.
Air Reel Hit Box Baseline: Chun Li, Guile, Cammy
For whatever reason, Chun Li's falling hit box extends so far down that she can be juggled by sweeps, ground-level projectiles, and virtually all other low attacks. Guile and Cammy also exhibit weird air reel specifications following knockdown, but not to the same extent as Chun Li does.
Versatile Hit Box Placement: Dhalsim, Vice
With his famous stretchy limbs, Dhalsim can set exposed hit boxes nearly anywhere on the screen. It's impossible to overstate the usefulness of this ability. For example, Dhalsim's j.LP range makes him susceptible to ordinary attacks even while he's floating at the top of the screen. Vice can mimic some of Dhalsim's utility on the ground by making use of her Da Cide and Da Cide Slayer.
OTG CC Throw Vulnerability: Dan, Rolento
Unlike everyone else, Dan and Rolento aren't rendered untouchable whenever they fall down. Throws attempted during Custom Combo mode can lift Dan and Rolento off the ground without disrupting the combo counter. Command throws can be followed up with more OTG throws, but normal throws are supposed to be terminal. The four well-known exceptions are Chang's HK throw, Hibiki's HK throw, Maki's HP throw, and Yun's HP throw, all of which may be repeated until the CC timer expires.
To the advantage of a much broader selection of characters, an alternative exception exists. Towards the end of Dan's and Rolento's wakeup animations, there is a specific instant during which command grabs register as a combo regardless of the attack or throw used to score the knockdown. Yet the glitch-prone fun doesn't stop there. If Dan or Rolento perform a Reversal to coincide with any throw set up in this manner, the resulting display resembles the chaos of Tech Throw Reversal Glitches.
Super Meter Refund: Dan
Charging any of CvS2's six super meter types from empty to full requires exactly eight regular Taunts. Dan's Chohatsu Densetsu consists of five standard Taunts capped by a sixth overdramatic Taunt that replenishes three times the usual amount. Initiating a C-Groove lvl2 super just before Dan's concluding Taunt restocks enough super meter to enable consecutive legitimate lvl2 supers. Likewise, N-Groove is granted the potential for two successive lvl3 supers while A-Groove ends up merely an eighth short of tacking on a Custom Combo after a lvl1 super. In addition to four variants of his ground Taunt, Dan's movelist contains the only air Taunt which doesn't alter jump trajectory.
Unparalleled Interrupt Versatility: Rolento
Rolento's elaborate arsenal of weaponry includes knives, grenades, tripwires, and a riot baton. None of his projectiles travel along the common path. His knives cause less hit stun and less pushback than ordinary fireballs. Rolento's Steel Rain is unquestionably the best all-purpose interrupt in the game. With no limit to the number of Taunt grenades he can put on the screen, Rolento can actually facilitate multi-layered interrupt sequences. For these reasons and many more, it comes as no surprise that he's become the most frequently chosen combo dummy in CvS2.
Assisted/Accelerated Transportation: Vega
The starting distance between Vega and his target wall determines his flight speed for the first stage of his Flying Barcelona Attack. If an opponent jumps squarely in the way, they're taken along for a ride. Under optimal conditions, Vega can propel opponents across nearly an entire stage length in less than two seconds. For most of the cast, there's no better option when it comes to overtaking projectiles. Older titles lack advanced movement options like dashing and superjumping, so applying this technique to the classics produces even more dramatic improvements.
Knockdown Vulnerability: Maki
As first shown in my CvS2 Random Awkward Craziness video, something inexplicable happens when Maki is struck by non-knockdown attacks during the landing recovery period of her Counter Attack. Instead of reverting to neutral stance after hit stun, she simply falls down. As a matter of fact, Maki's standing hit stun intervals are cut slightly short by this phenomenon, causing several sensitive combos to fail. On the other hand, juggling Maki in these circumstances still counts for combo continuation, opening up a whole new dimension of intricately choreographed constructions.
Tech Throw Reversal Glitch Interruption: E.Honda, Chun Li, Blanka
Most glitches ensuing from Tech Throw Reversals tend to be relatively stable. When two opponents simultaneously perform Reversals in response to a tech throw scenario, one universal consequence is the peculiar link established between the pair. In this condition, the quickest move to recover returns both characters to neutral stance immediately, thereby aborting the remainder of the other's animation. Furthermore, both characters maintain complete invincibility as long as the glitch stays active.
Needless to say, any measure of control over special move recovery presents abundant opportunities. Thanks to the exceptionally quick whiff animation of his Ooichou Nage command throw, Honda often serves as the default choice for interrupting invincible projectile attacks at close range. Taking the next step, precise adjustments become possible via sustainable moves such as Honda's Hyakuretsu Harite and Chun Li's Hyakuretsukyaku. Finally, Blanka's Surprise Back is an example of retreating Reversals which evade slow projectiles, saving them for later use while still shortening the opponent's recovery.
Notice that every example above deals with manipulating projectile attacks. This is the case because the glitch keeps both characters invulnerable until their concurrent recovery, erasing all physical attack hit boxes before either character becomes susceptible to harm. Only projectiles survive this purge.
Tech Throw Reversal Glitch Amplification: Akuma, Iori, Kim
Some anomalies caused by Tech Throw Reversals can be quite severe. Certain projectiles generate fascinating multiplication effects when paired with Akuma's Raging Demon, Iori's Dark Crescent Slice, or Kim's Phoenix Flattener. No doubt there are many more astonishing combinations of Tech Throw Reversals waiting to be discovered.