===================
MvC2 BLACKHEART FAQ
===================
(for the Arcade version only)
v.1.1, last updated 04/30/2009




                                        By Danny Lilithborne (a.k.a. Dasrik)


===========
FAQ HISTORY
===========

-v.1.1 (04/30/2009) - Yeah, yeah.  Just a basic dusting off of this one.  The
only major changes are in the Credits.

-v.1.0 (02/11/2006) - I basically just branded it as "v.1.0" to represent
that this Blackheart FAQ is authoritative.  Generally, everything I've
written is solid and has worked for me in matches, so I will now only update
this FAQ every year (after the Evolution tournament, if there is one).

-v.0.6 (01/12/2006) - Altered the "Objective" section; described the "Magneto
secret weapon"; streamlined the strategy section.

-v.0.51 (12/22/2005) - Minor alterations.

-v.0.5 (12/18/2005) - Touched up the matchup section.

-v.0.2 (11/17/2005) - Minor alterations.

-v.0.1 (11/15/2005) - The prototype version that started when I just decided
to rip off Buktooth's format to write my long-overdue BH FAQ.  Thanks for
the inspiration, Campbell ;)

All Capcom characters and series are (c) Capcom Co., Ltd.  Strider is
(c) Moto Kikaku.  All Marvel characters are (c) Marvel Characters, Inc.
With that out of the way, on with the FAQ....

-----
NOTE:
-----

This guide is intended for advanced level play. If anything here is unclear 
because of my terminology or notation, ask somebody on the forums at 
www.shoryuken.com. It's the country's largest Street Fighter site; somebody can
help you there. Do NOT e-mail with inane questions!

Anyway, on with the guide!

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

=================
TABLE OF CONTENTS
=================

1. WHY PICK BLACKHEART?
  -strengths
  -weaknesses
  -stats
  -objective
  -place on a team

2. MOVELIST
  -normal moves
  -command movements
  -throws
  -special moves
  -supers
  -snapback
  -assist types
  -counter types
  -team super types

3. COMBOS YOU SHOULD KNOW
  -ground combos
  -air combos
  -DHC combos

4. STRATEGY
  -full screen - 3/4ths range
  -half screen range
  -point blank range
  -opponent in the corner
  -things to keep in mind

5. TEAM SPECIFIC TIPS
  -Blackheart vs MSP
  -Blackheart vs Santhrax
  -Blackheart vs "Team Scrub"
  -Blackheart vs Spiral
  -Blackheart vs Strider/Doom
  -Blackheart vs Blackheart

6. KEY MATCH-UPS
  -Blackheart vs Magneto
  -Blackheart vs Storm
  -Blackheart vs Sentinel
  -Blackheart vs Cable

7. CREDITS

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

=======================
1. WHY PICK BLACKHEART?
=======================

There's one single, best reason to play Blackheart in MvC2: because he's lazy.
Players who are inexperienced cannot handle a well-played Blackheart; no matter
what, the opponent is going to have to outwit you to defeat you.  This matters
in tournaments where picking "business teams" would result in forcing you to
work too hard against mediocre opponents, thus losing mental energy you might
need against actual threats.

---------
STRENGTHS
---------

Blackheart is the best runaway character in the game, in my opinion; he is
better than Storm because his runaway carries a threat with it, namely demons.
Storm has to worry a lot more than Blackheart if she chooses to run away;
Blackheart just dares you to get past his demons before he even has to worry
about taking you on face-to-face.

He can also rushdown surprisingly well, but I think this is a fast way to lose
games and shouldn't be relied on.  Mostly use it once the opponent starts
second-guessing himself.  His light attacks are hard to defeat without anti-air
assists.  Even Sentinel has trouble.

-----------
WEAKNESSES?
-----------

Against experienced opponents, Blackheart ends up working a lot harder than
you'd have to by picking a character that carries the threat of damage.
Magneto players will especially enjoy mopping the floor with your demonic blood
after they see through your patterns.  You're forced to play mix-up without
even being able to bank on a money hit.

Also, Blackheart-centered teams lose to Cable in a huge way.  The Cable player
doesn't even have to try.  The risk on your side is way too high to do much of
anything at all, and Cable can chip your lead away in the time it takes for you
to come up with a plan.  Nobody generally wants to be there in that match, and
you should avoid playing Blackheart on Cable users unless you are feeling
particularly masochistic that day.

-----------------------------------
STATISTICS (made up by yours truly)
-----------------------------------
On a scale of 10, 5 being average:

Offense Rating: 7
Defense Rating: 9.5
Practical Damage: 4
Potential Damage: 6
Speed: 7
Jump: 9
Superjump: 7
Normal Moves: 9
Special Moves: 4
Supers: 5
Overall: 7.5

---------
OBJECTIVE
---------

Put at its simplest, Blackheart's objective is to not lose.  What does this
mean?  Instead of forcing the opponent into mix-up situations and attempting
to land your "money combo", you want to stall as much as possible to give
yourself the time to read your opponent's gameplan, and counter it with the
best response.

In an ideal match-up, you will be spending a lot of time dropping an assist
and superjumping over the opponent's head to attack them from the other side.
This is less of an aggressive act than a way to protect your assist character.
Once you get your opponent used to the idea that every vertical movement will
involve demons somehow, he will be hesitant to attack you unless he is truly
reckless.

If/when the timer hits 20 seconds, Blackheart has to decide whether he's
winning or losing and act appropriately.  You can usually cheat your way into
a win if the timer's reached 20 seconds, even if the opponent is winning,
because the typical Marvel mindset is to close out the match before "random
crap" happens (despite the fact that Blackheart is utterly incapable of
fairly pulling off one of those types of wins).

---------------
PLACE ON A TEAM
---------------

While Blackheart can conceivably work on any slot, I'd suggest only putting
him in the first or the second position for two reasons:

1. His most valuable assist (Inferno) takes too long to cover and will be
   more of a hindrance in a match if he is third; and
2. Blackheart on his own is absolutely helpless in any matchup that matters.

With that being said, there are two types of BH-centric teams; the "BH as
meter generator" team (where Blackheart is started on point), and the "BH as
lead holder" team (where Blackheart is next in line for a Delayed Hyper Combo).
In the former type of team, BH will not be chipping as much and can normally
afford a few aggressive risks; in the latter, BH will try to attack as little
as humanly possible and often wins by timeout.

Blackheart third, IMO, only works in situations where the first two characters
work more as a unit (ie. Storm/Sentinel) than a "battery/runaway" dyad (ie.
Doom/Cable).  This way, he is not truly relied on to do clean-up duty and
becomes the one to hold the gained lead.  That being said, you probably won't
win very much with this type of team against aggressive rushdown players
unless you are simply smarter and possess quicker reflexes than your opponent.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

============
2. MOVE LIST
============

Unlike Buktooth, my movelists don't have all the fancy framedata stuff.  I know
the information is available, but in the world of MvC2, move speed isn't nearly
as important as team dynamic, so it's probably not something you want to keep
in mind in any case, outside of remarkable cases (like Magneto's one-frame low
short... damn Magnus).

------------
NORMAL MOVES
------------

-Standing jab
-------------

Blackheart chops the air in front of him.

This is a fairly strong, quick poke that carries the vulnerability of BH's low
point being left wide open.  It's a good 50/50 guess on triangle-jump happy
opponents; otherwise I wouldn't really use it.  It combos into Blackheart's
launcher as a juggle, but honestly, the opportunities to use it in this way
are few and far between.

-Standing strong
----------------

Blackheart reveals a blade from his elbow, which he uses to launch the
opponent into the air.

Outside of the above stated juggle, this will never combo, so it's pretty
much useless.

-Standing fierce
----------------

Blackheart thrusts his chest out and several "pig" demons appear from his
chest.

His chest bump will hit for normal damage, and the "pig" demons, if they
connect, will steadily gnaw the opponent's life away for a short time (or
until you summon another set of demons or do a special move).

The "Magneto secret weapon" because the chest bump has more priority than it
seems to, thus stuffing triangle jump blitzkriegs before they start.
Honestly, it has the same vulnerability as standing jab, so I'd only use it
sparingly.  The demons do not go very far from Blackheart's chest, making it
Blackheart's least useful "fierce demon" move.

-Standing short
---------------

Blackheart whips his tail out toward the opponent.

First things first; this move does not have as good a range as it appears to.
The hitbox on Blackheart's tail only extends just so far, pretty much only
slightly beyond the range of his arm.

Nevertheless, it is a quick poke with oodles of "Marvel priority" (in other
words, its hitbox partly does not possess an equivalent vulnerability box).
Still not as useful as low short, but it is quicker.  Use it as the
situation demands.

-Standing forward
-----------------

Blackheart thrusts the spikes that make up his mane outward as an attack.

In previous games, this was one of Blackheart's attack of choice (basically,
the forward kick button was his best friend); now, you can only combo this
move off of a light attack, making it good combo filler, although it will
not consistently combo off a short attack at its furthest range.

-Standing roundhouse
--------------------

Blackheart stomps the ground while thrusting his body forward, and "goblin"
demons are thrown from his leg onto the ground for a short distance.

His leg kick will hit for normal damage, and the "goblin" demons, if they
connect, will hold the opponent in place for a brief time (and I mean brief;
it's all too easy to wiggle out.  You don't even have to push any buttons).

Do not, I repeat, DO NOT do this move without some type of cover (such as
Sentinel drones).  This move looks like a really good "get off me" kind of
move, except that the space between blocking the kick and blocking the demons
allows for the opponent to call an assist.  I've seen way too many BH players
throw away a match thanks to a Cyclops stuck between hits in his standing
roundhouse.

In any case, given that you have cover or the opponent is a good distance
away, it is one of Blackheart's most useful standing moves.  It is also a
decent setup for some Judgment Day chip damage at least.  Just watch your
head, as it is left open for high triangle jump attacks.

-Low jab
--------

Blackheart juts his fist out, sticking his tail a short distance along with it.

It's not notably quicker than the low short, and will not hit if blocked
high.  Other than glitch starts against opponents with slow attacks, I'm not
sure why one would bother to find a use for this move.

-Low strong
-----------

Blackheart thrusts his palm out, shooting out black EVIL energy.

This move is a STRIKE, which will push the opponent across the screen from you
if it connects.

This move was always fairly overrated because it does not have nearly the
range it appears to, only extending slightly beyond the range of Blackheart's
hand.  While it sets up BH's most impressive tactically useful combo, the
fact that its range is deceptive would lead me to suggest staying away from
its use even if you can do the combo consistently.

-Low fierce
-----------

Blackheart pulls some "pig" demons from the ground, which slide along the
floor for a short distance before disappearing.

The act of pulling counts as a hit, and is a MINI-LAUNCHER, pushing the
opponent slightly off the ground if it connects.

There are situational uses for this move.  The "pig" demons move up slightly
before sliding along the ground, making it a decent non-committal anti-air
given that you're adequately covered.  They're also the only form of demons
that will not disappear if Blackheart executes a special move, which is more
useful than you'd originally reason.  Calling a projectile assist while 
cancelling a low fierce into an Inferno is a safer tactic than it first appears
to be.

Nevertheless, I'd definitely not overuse this move as it leaves BH vulnerable
for a long while, especially to cross-ups.

-Low short
----------

Basically the same attack as standing short, but from a crouching position.

Most of your actual acts of aggression with Blackheart will be low short.  It's
quick, has a lot of priority, easily combos to low forward and sets up BH's
bread and butter assist combos.  What more do you need, really?

-Low forward
------------

Basically the same attack as standing forward, but from a crouching position.

Pretty much just combo-filler.  It doesn't extend as far as the standing
forward, but it's easier to combo from a low short.

-Low roundhouse
---------------

Blackheart summons "goblin" demons which move a (very) short distance along the
floor.

His useless demon summon from the ground; it does not carry an initial hit like
the other attacks, and the "goblin" demons suffer from both having a weak
effect and, in this case, not going very far.  I would never use this move,
honestly.

-Jumping jab
------------

Basically the same attack as standing jab, but in the air.

While his chop doesn't have "Marvel priority", its extreme quickness and
straightforward attack trajectory make it the ideal move in air-to-air
situations.  It will beat a lot of Sentinel's moves cleanly, especially if
accompanied with an airdash first.

A common Blackheart tactic is to superjump and airdash forward while mashing on
jab; while not the most efficient of styles, it is effective at what it does.

-Jumping strong
---------------

Blackheart shoots a bolt of lightning diagonally down from his hands.

Pre-MvC2, one of his most useful aerial attacks; now, it's a combo filler
that hits the opponent in an unusual arc, making followups difficult (his
jumping forward should be avoided for reasons I'll go into shortly, and it
often leaves opponents out of range for his air throw).

-Jumping fierce
---------------

Blackheart "throws" "pig" demons outward, which move forward for a brief
time before returning to wherever Blackheart is at.

Unlike previous Marvel games, Blackheart now retains his original jump arc
when doing his jumping fierce.

I don't care what other players say, 90% of your Blackheart attacks SHOULD
be jumping fierce.  The "pig" demons are only rivaled by Cable's Electrap
as the best form of space control in MvC2 - simple, dominating and long
lasting.  Best of all, by using your airdashes, you can alter the trajectory
of the fierce attack pretty much at will.

The one weakness of the jumping fierce is that if the opponent can outrun
the "pig" demons' initial forward movement, they can attack you.  A connected
hit against Blackheart will make the demons disappear.  It is for this reason
that I suggest sometimes using the airdash in a normal jump after summoning
"pig" demons.  Despite its obvious vulnerability, it can alter the place where
opponents think you will land at.

Superjumping with this attack is not as useful as it will leave you more
open to cross-ups and forces you to use an airdash since Blackheart is for the
most part totally vulnerable until he lands; the main exception is Sentinel
since Sentinel players mostly superjump to begin their fly patterns.  It's also
a good move against people who begin their attack patterns with a superjump,
but don't expect it to work indefinitely.

-Jumping short
--------------

Blackheart flicks his tail down beneath him.

Oodles of "Marvel priority"; will stop most normal move anti-airs clean and can
combo easily into jumping forward.  Its hit ability is best for people directly
beneath him, which makes the jumping short a good cross-up tool; however, you
won't get much opportunities for this and should just focus on attacking
directly with it.

Most people's basic aggressive attack is dash-up low short; since Blackheart
does not have a cancellable dash, his best aggressive attack is jump short.
This takes away from his mix-up ability, to be sure, but he makes up for it by
the jump short simply being very hard to stop.  If someone blocks it and
calls Captain Commando's assist, for example, it will probably not connect
unless they think to pushblock you.

It's your main offensive manuever, but that doesn't mean you should abuse
it.  Blackheart is pretty vulnerable to being punched in the face since the
jump short doesn't attack in front of him except where his tail exists.

-Jumping forward
----------------

Basically the same attack as standing forward, but in the air.

His best combo-filler attack.  Not much more to say than that, except that a
low short-forward combo isn't necessarily guaranteed afterwards.  Since BH
does not have a cancellable dash, you are basically committed to whatever
range the jumping combo leaves the opponent at for follow-ups.

STAY AWAY FROM THIS MOVE IN AN AIR COMBO, unless you're doing the low strong
combo; the reason for this is if it activates Flying Screen and you're not
near the corner, you will be forced to dash in, pretty much right next to
the opponent as he gets up.  Even Sentinel can dash in and low short you
into a combo before you can recover.

-Jumping roundhouse
-------------------

Blackheart summons "goblin" demons to drop down directly beneath him.

Contrary to popular belief, this is far from Blackheart's most useful normal
move.  I actually mainly use this move to protect my assists, and in that
respect it is useless on Sentinel since it can just ignore the demons and
attack your assist anyway.  It serves as an alternate form of space control,
but there are not many instances when jump fierce wouldn't serve your
intent better.

This move is most often seen as a superjump move.  Because of Blackheart's
ability to cancel normal attacks with air dashes in this game, it's useful
here because you can protect your assist and still be free to attack on the
way down; however, if the opponent has somehow moved beyond your assist,
you are very vulnerable to cross-ups.  Don't underestimate your foe's
abilities to get past your assist and just be ready to block from another
direction if you see the icon move towards you.

A tricky use of this move is to set the opponent up to expect jump fierce
and then use the jump roundhouse as a normal jump move when they decide
to dash forward past the "pig" demons.  The enemy will normally be too
shocked to remember to shake out, and you can go for a free hit.  I've
dubbed this gambit the "SooMighty fakeout".

-----------------
COMMAND MOVEMENTS
-----------------

-Ground Dash (double tap a horizontal direction)
------------------------------------------------

Blackheart turns into a glob of black goo and enters the ground,
reappearing a few steps in front of or behind where his original position.

One of Blackheart's most difficult to understand moves is his ground dash.
It seems like a teleport, but it has some startup and exit lag and at certain
points Blackheart is vulnerable to attack (in other words, it won't save you
from AHVB).  It's the singular reason why Blackheart can't really fight
Cable, since he's forced to ground dash after a Heart of Darkness connects.

This version of the ground dash is not really very good since it doesn't
cover any ground.

-Extended Ground Dash (tap and then hold a horizontal direction)
----------------------------------------------------------------

Blackheart turns into a glob of black goo and enters the ground,
reappearing 3/4 of a screen's width in front of or behind his original
position.

This is his useful move.  Blackheart can turn attempts to cross him up into
the opponent crossing himself up if you call an assist before doing this
maneuver.  It is also his only viable way of getting around a superjump
Electrap, and used with caution can get him around Cable's gun at ground
level.  Just remember he has points of vulnerability at the beginning, in
the middle of and at the end of the dash, albeit only at very low points.

-Forward Air Dash (press two punch buttons)
-------------------------------------------

Blackheart thrusts forward for a short distance.  He can cancel normal
moves with this maneuver.

Less useful than his backdash, but of course required to cross over the
opponent during superjumps and to keep Sentinel from flying over your
head.  Blackheart can also call "pig" demons and then airdash forward
to keep the demons slightly in front of him for the duration of their
existence, but I've yet to find a good reason to do this.

-Back Dash (press two punch buttons while holding back)
-------------------------------------------------------

Blackheart thrusts backward for a short distance.  He can cancel normal
moves with this maneuver.

You'll be using this move a lot in combination with either superjump
fierce or roundhouse (or sometimes even in a normal jump).  It's quick
and gets you the hell out of dodge in a hurry.  Not only that, it is
normally quick enough so that you can call demons and be able to block
before Cable can react to shoot you.  I would NOT count on this, though.

-Universal Launcher (hold down/forward and hit Fierce)
------------------------------------------------------

Blackheart reveals a blade from his elbow, which he uses to launch the
opponent into the air.

Does more damage than the stand strong.  This move is basically only
useful to attack the opponent when he's in a position where low short
won't work (ie. Sentinel tagging in).  While it can be comboed into
Inferno (and from there into a super), the timing to do so is difficult, so I 
would just do an air combo.

-Taunt (hit Start)
------------------

Blackheart thrusts his arms out while saying "Blackheart rises!"

Only use this move if you really want to insult your opponent.  Its only
tactical purpose is to draw an attack, and Blackheart's taunt takes too
long to execute.

------
THROWS
------

Fierce (ground)
---------------

Blackheart grabs the opponent and summons lost souls which surround
him, then throws him to the ground.

Since Blackheart doesn't have a ground dash, you won't be making much use
of his ground throws.  He can't even use assists to extend it into a
combo, so only use this on the turtle mountains and the somnambulists.

Roundhouse (ground)
-------------------

Blackheart electrocutes the opponent and then throws him to the ground.

Throws them further than the fierce throw, otherwise it's pretty much
the same move.

Fierce/Roundhouse (air)
-----------------------

Blackheart electrocutes the opponent and then throws him to the ground.

A good air throw with decent range, it's basically what you will be
attempting to end your air combos with.  If the opponent manages to
approach you through a superjump, it's a good tactic to meet them in
the air with a jab, then airdash and throw.

I suggest only using the roundhouse button to throw as the roundhouse
air attack is less vulnerable than the fierce attack.

-------------
SPECIAL MOVES
-------------

-Dark Thunder
-------------
(HCF+Jab:) Blackheart shoots thunder that slides along the ground.
(HCF+Fierce:) Blackheart shoots thunder that moves diagonally to the top
              of the screen.

Not as useful as it seems at first glance.  You can conceivably use the move
to irritate people who like to dash in, but nobody really dashes in Marvel;
the fierce version can do dumb things like stop Storm from Hail Storming
without cover.  Additionally, you can dark thunder into Heart of Darkness
on heavy people like Sentinel after hitting them with a Commando assist
(in Sentinel's case, this is necessary because Inferno won't work).  But
the timing to make it a juggle and not an OTG is too rough.

Overall, I wouldn't really try to incorporate this move into my main
strategems.  You can try if innovation is your dream.

-Inferno
--------
(HCB+Jab:) Blackheart shoots a pillar of ice in front of him.
(HCB+Fierce:) Blackheart shoots a pillar of ice that tracks to where the
              opponent is.

I have a love/hate relationship with the Inferno move.  It's most commonly
seen cancelled into the Heart of Darkness super.  The issue is that to do it
properly requires you to sweep the joystick in two half circles in opposite
directions quickly, so it's easy to screw up, which leads to a lot of matches
lost by way of Cable's BFG.

Seriously, though, it's a good move and you can even do it on its own with
appropriate cover.  However, don't go nuts.  First of all, the tracking
version can be evaded by the opponent simply dashing when he hears Blackheart
say "Inferno".  You can change up to the jab version to be tricky, but you
are essentially guessing on what the opponent wants to do, and relying on a
guess is not strategy, it's poker.

It reaches all the way up to the top of the screen, so if you're in its path,
the only way to avoid getting hit is to airdash off of the top.  This is why
Blackheart easily defeats people without good dashes like Guile; they simply
don't have a counter for well-planned Infernos in combination with Blackheart's
normal braindead strategy.

------
SUPERS
------

-Armageddon (a.k.a. Crunchberries)
-----------
(QCF+PP): Blackheart raises his arms and summons a multitude of meteors from
          the sky which juggle for flame damage.

This super will let you down, a lot.

Let's get the obvious stuff out of the way.  If it comes out properly,
Armageddon will do more damage than Heart of Darkness, and it's Cable safe.
If you're lucky, you might even be able to juggle afterwards with jumping
attacks, which draws the opponent back into a Blackheart gambit trap.

But therein lies the issue: Armageddon RARELY executes like it should.  Like
the rest of Blackheart's supers, it is mashable, but based on a random seed.
Holding the joystick towards where the opponent is and mashing MIGHT get
more rocks to hit your opponent.  On the other hand, they might just fall
out of dodge and be able to shoot you or typhoon you or whatever.

Nevertheless, it is worth executing in selected situations.  Basically, the
only way you'll be able to damage Cable safely is if you can setup a combo
into Armageddon.  You can do it in DHC combos given that the opponent is
up high or in an unrollable situation (ie. after Photon Array).  It's also
a good gambit to stop crossups in their tracks.

Just remember that it's not reliable and try your best to mash it out as
best as you can.

-Heart of Darkness (a.k.a. HOD)
------------------
(QCF+KK): Blackheart rises slowly with his arms crossed as a portal to hell
          opens beneath the opponent.  Demons will rapidly attack him, and
          if the super connects, it will end with a pillar of light that hits
          for flying screen and flame damage.

Blackheart's all-purpose super for chip damage, actual damage and combos.
It's a pretty good super on its face, given that you can get the opponent to
stand still long enough for the tracking to work.  It's even slower than
Inferno's, so your enemy has plenty of time to get out of the way unless you
pin them somehow first (ie. with an Inferno).

Also, if the Heart of Darkness is blocked, Blackheart reverts to a normal
jump state, which means he can call an assist while at superjump height.  This
is a huge advantage if you're playing him trap style, as you can basically
pin the opponent for free afterward.

It's got problems, though - mostly, that the damage factor is very random.
Sometimes it does huge damage; other times, no damage at all.  This is because
of a random seed that accompanies all of Blackheart's supers.  Mashing helps,
but not always.  I've found the best way to mash is to do so until the demons
begin to hit, then stop.

Also, if the super does connect and you're midscreen, you'll be forced to
dash back on the screen afterwards.  Blackheart's dash is SLOOOW, and the
opponent will be able to gain position on you (or in Cable's case, actually
hit you).

-Judgment Day (a.k.a. demon super)
-------------
(HCB+PP): Blackheart performs the animation for his standing fierce, then
          summons an array of "pig" demons from his chest.
(HCB+PP [air]): Blackheart performs the animation for his jumping roundhouse,
                then summons an array of "goblin" demons to the ground.

These demons don't have the same effect as the normal move demons; they simply
hit for damage.

The effectiveness of this as a chip super has been toned down severely from
MSF, but it still serves its purpose.  It's basically the only safe way to
chip teams with Cable on them, given that you can pin the opponent down first.

The ground one has problems because of the random seed factor.  Sometimes, the
demons will go low from the beginning which prevents the opponent from taking
advantage of Blackheart's low vulnerability; sometimes, not at all.  Mashing
seems to be the least effective for this super above the others, so keep
that in mind.

Finally, if you can pin the opponent and hit his assist, Judgment Day will
reset up to three times; this makes it a very potent assist punisher.

--------
SNAPBACK (QCF+Assist button)
--------

The same animation as Blackheart's low strong, with all of its weaknesses.
I would only go for this if I hit with jumping roundhouse demons as a juggle.

------------
ASSIST TYPES
------------

(Alpha:) Jab Dark Thunder.  This is actually a useful assist given you are
matched against an opponent who focuses on dashing to attack.  It's rare in
MvC2 but not uncommon.

(Beta:) Fierce Inferno.  The most commonly seen assist type, this is an
altered form of the Inferno attack that doesn't knock down.  It is excellent
for pindown purposes and can set up cross up attacks if it connects; the
downside is that Blackheart stays on the screen for a long time.  He can
be difficult to cover, so call him only when you know you can protect him
from attack.

(Gamma:) Standing Strong.  Outside of silly combo video setups, this is
useless.

-------------
COUNTER TYPES
-------------

(Alpha:) Jab Dark Thunder.  Like in MSH, this wasn't very useful at all.

(Beta:) Fierce Inferno.  Only useful from a long distance, cancelled into
Heart of Darkness or Judgment Day.

(Gamma:) Standing Strong.  Too slow to use in situations that matter.
Again, useless.

------------------------
TEAM SUPER TYPES (A1+A2)
------------------------

(Alpha:) Judgment Day.  This tends to fudge most team supers because it
juggles inconsistently and very rarely totally combos.

(Beta:) Heart of Darkness.  If you have Blackheart alone and manage to
connect this, you can juggle with it until your meter runs out.  Otherwise,
it's not all that good.

(Gamma:) Armageddon.  In a team super made up of vertical attacks, it might
work out; on the other hand, Blackheart's random seed might fudge the attack
damage.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

=========================
3. COMBOS YOU SHOULD KNOW
=========================
NOTE: Not every single Blackheart combo will be listed here, because MvC2 is
basically limitless in combo possibility.  I'm writing down combos that are
practical in actual matches and serve some distinct purpose.  Silly assist
combos get the nix unless you can actually have at least part of the combo
blocked without being at a huge disadvantage.

Parentheticals are optional.

-------------
GROUND COMBOS
-------------

-low short plus anti-air assist, low forward, Inferno xx Heart of Darkness.

Blackheart's bread and butter combo.  To execute this with a fair degree of
consistency, tap short and the assist button twice for good measure.  An
Alzheimer's patient could hit confirm this, so you shouldn't have too much
trouble.  If it's blocked, then you will have to protect your assist; for
this reason, I prefer to only go for his B&B if they've already called their
own assist.

-low short (plus assist), stand roundhouse, Judgment Day/Heart of Darkness

Your Cable safe combo.  If you have a clear shot at him, this is the combo
you want to do.  You can do it on other characters in situations where the
assist is not available to you, because even if they shake out of the goblins,
it's still fairly difficult to escape having to block the super.

-low short, low strong, SJ. cancel, sj. jab/short, Air Dash, sj.jab, sj.short,
 sj.strong, sj.forward(, sj.roundhouse)

This combo leaves Blackheart close to the opponent where he can easily
drop Doom assist on his head, so it's a good combo to learn for the Doom/BH
crowd.  The timing on the low strong superjump cancel is not difficult
either, but it's hard to hit confirm unless you have acute reaction speed.
For this reason, I don't do the combo myself; but it's a valuable one to
be able to do.

-universal launcher, Inferno xx Armageddon/Heart of Darkness

If you get the opponent in a situation where the B&B won't work because he's
airborne, then this combo works, although it's difficult to execute.  If
you're not confident you can get this off at will, you're better off trying
for an air combo instead.

-jump back fierce, call anti-air assist, Inferno xx Heart of Darkness

This works best with Captain Commando's assist.  Basically, if you can see
the opponent is going to get hit by your pigs, you can do this on faith.  It's
impressive without being difficult.

----------
AIR COMBOS
----------

-sj. jab, sj. short (sj.strong), Air Dash, sj. jab, sj. short, Air Throw

This is not a real combo since you can break the Air Throw, but it is
Blackheart's aircombo of choice.  Depending on height and size of the opponent,
you might want to omit the sj.strong as it may leave the opponent in a
position that is out of range of your air throw.

-sj.fierce, Judgment Day

This is very iffy, but can work off of a launcher or a close range air melee.
Because of the random seed of Judgment Day, it may work, or it may not.  I
would attempt it only in a do-or-die situation.

-(corner) sj. jab, sj. short, sj. strong, sj.forward, sj.fierce

The final superjump fierce doesn't combo.  But it will shoot some "pig" demons
offscreen in case the opponent tries to counterattack you on wakeup.  As long
as you block, you stand a good chance of getting a free hit.

-sj.roundhouse, Back Dash, sj.roundhouse.  Land and Repeat.

Blackheart's controversial infinite.  In my opinion, it is worthless.  You
are doing negligible damage to the opponent while giving them much more
meter than you; basically, wasting time putting them in a situation where
they can possibly escape and strike back.

However, there is one fair use for it in my eyes: in Cable/Blackheart teams.
If you catch an opponent with roundhouse demons and you have solid
execution, it should be one character lost for free.  But that relies on
your body being up to the task, and come tournament time, you might not
always be up to par, especially in later matches.

----------
DHC COMBOS
----------

-(Blackheart/Sentinel) Inferno xx Heart of Darkness/Armageddon (whifF), DHC
 into Hyper Sentinel Force

A StiltMan combo (based off of the screenname of the guy that invented it).  To
me, the mechanics of this combo are way too iffy to go for reliably.  You
basically have to get the top drone to hit before Blackheart's super connects,
and getting the height right in the heat of the match is nigh impossible.
He claims to be able to do it every time, but seeing is believing.  Until then,
I only list it here as a possibility.

-(Doom/Blackheart) air combo into Photon Array, DHC into Armageddon

This is more damaging than following up with Heart of Darkness, it's idiot
proof since you can't roll after Photon Array, and most importantly, it is
Cable safe.

-(Commando/Blackheart) Captain Storm, DHC into Armageddon before final hit

This is something you'll want to know in case you ever land a low fierce
with Commando in those rare situations, because it gets Blackheart back in
while doing a lot of damage.  You need to reverse the motion for Armageddon
and do it a few moments before Commando does the final electric pillar for
best results.  Like Photon Array, it's impossible to roll out, although
the opponent can possibly mash out.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

===========
4. STRATEGY
===========

While you should be able to create a personal strategy on your own based on
the above, I thought I'd give you some pointers of my own in case you are still
confused.  It never hurts to help (unless it costs me a match if I face you in
a tournament, of course ;)

To you low-tier warriors, anytime I mention "Sentinel/Doom" assists, you can
replace that with a projectile assist of your choice as long as it has good
range.  You can also replace popular anti-air assists with their lesser but
equally serviceable low-tier equivalents if they exist (ie. substitute SonSon
for Cyclops; or Cammy for Commando).

--------------------------------------
RANGE 1: FULL SCREEN - 3/4THS DISTANCE
--------------------------------------

Jump back fierce, unless your opponent's name is Cable.

This is seriously all you want to be doing if you are this distance away.
Blackheart loves this range as it invites the opponent to come to him, where
he can set him up for position advantage and get him into a trap.  To
accentuate the idea, you might want to call Sentinel/Doom assists, although
this is not necessary.

The opponent can react to jump back fierce in only two ways if he wants
to defeat you - try to dash underneath the demons, or superjump in an attempt
to close ground.  The dash is something to worry about if the opponent is,
say, Magneto, who can potentially kill you off of one juggled hit.  That's
when you're forced to get tricky.

The superjump is what can defeat jump back fierce if you fall into a trance,
which is why you should try to leave an assist available.  If they superjump
in order to gain ground, ground dash.  You can make it safer by calling
Sentinel/Doom, but most of the time, you should be able to successfully dash
and make it out with plenty of time to block.  You might even force them to
overextend themselves, in which case you get a free hit.

When you're fighting Cable, you have to rethink this.  Cable's the only guy
who can compete with Blackheart for being the king of full-screen, and in
this fight he is generally going to win.  This fight basically boils down to
making the other guy superjump first.  On your side, you're probably going
to do a whole lot of nothing.  Sometimes you will want to do jump back
fierce anyway, just to impress the idea that you will do it.

On Cable, the goal is to be close in order to prevent him from being able
to chip you safely.  If you get him to super-jump, you can ground dash and
your work is done.  Otherwise, you will have to take the risk and jump first.
Remember that the goal is to close ground, and watch out for Cable's variety
of ranged attacks.  It boils down to, "don't get shot".  Good luck.

--------------------
RANGE 2: HALF SCREEN
--------------------

Half screen is at a range where you are vulnerable to anti-air assists, so
your goal now is to bait the assist out.  From there, you can either choose to
counter the assist with your own assist, or attack the opponent directly now
that the option of assisting is not available to him.  Honestly, in most
scenarios I would go for the latter just to settle the match, but that is
akin to underestimating your opponent.  So you are best sticking to the bait
and run tactic.

You have to account for different types of AAA as well, and adjust your
strategy accordingly.  For example, Commando can be evaded by running past
the corridor; Cyclops makes evasion that much more difficult.  Conversely,
Cyclops is near useless at stopping superjump maneuvers, although Commando
will cut them short.

This is a range where you might want to consider throwing out a standing
roundhouse.  From this distance, even if an anti-air hits, they probably
will be too busy blocking goblins to take advantage (unless they predicted
your roundhouse and called an assist first, in which case the goblins will
disappear).  Blocked goblins will get them back in the range you want to
be in.

Otherwise, this is not all that different from full screen.  If the opponent
doesn't have a viable anti-air assist, you are free to do the full screen
tactic.  Just remember that it's a shorter ride to dash under the pigs and
hit you than it would be at full screen.

--------------------------
RANGE 3: POINT BLANK RANGE
--------------------------

This should only happen in two circumstances: 1. you landed from a superjump
next to the opponent and he hasn't attacked, or 2. you're fighting Cable.

Either way, the same strategy will apply.  In almost every case, the opponent
will either call their anti-air assist or try to poke you off of them.  Either
way, you're at a disadvantage tactically, but you can expolit it strategically.

This is where Marvel vs. Capcom 2 shines as an intuitive game, because you
can devise a plan on the spot to take advantage and keep it despite the fact
that you're actually in a bad situation.  For example, they're Cable/Commando
and you have Doom assist available.  At close range, dropping Doom assist and
jumping forward is basically free trapping, and there's nothing he can do
about it.

Or say the opponent is Magneto/Psylocke and you have Blackheart/Cyclops.  If
the Magneto player is like most, he's probably already called Psylocke in an
attempt to confuse your defense.  Magneto vs. Blackheart in this situation is
basically pie, since Blackheart can jump forward and hit shorts while calling
Cyclops and Magneto is generally powerless to resist you.

This is the kind of thing that can only be improved through experience.  I
can't tell you anything here that will help you when push comes to shove.
You have to create your own luck.

Of course, if the opponent has completely revealed his hand and is currently
vulnerable, you want to hit them with a combo; preferably, one that leaves you
in close to continue to trap them, but if your execution is off, then you
can do the generic HOD combo and bank on your better defensive ability.

---------------------------
RANGE 4: OPPONENT IN CORNER
---------------------------

Blackheart is at his best here since he can establish space control all around
the opponent, but lacks an ability to keep the opponent from backing up.  Here,
it's all about mind games.  If you have Doom's Molecular Shield available to
you, your enemy should basically not be able to leave the corner again.
It's a little more difficult with Sentinel drones, but definitely doable.

Here is where you want all characters, but particularly Cable, since it allows
you to do Heart of Darkness on him safely for chip.  If it connects, you can
time a standing roundhouse so that the demons pin him.  You won't be able
to do another super combo, but if you do a follow-up combo of jump short,
forward into crouch short, forward, you will be able to drop an assist to
keep him from escaping.

On that note, it is here that a Blackheart with a lot of meter can potentially
kill an assist on sight, given he has an assist with a lot of space coverage
(like Commando).  It's risky, but you can cancel Inferno into HOD while calling
your assist repeatedly to keep juggling the assist until he or she is dead.

Overall, you want to focus less on keeping them in point blank range, and
more on keeping them in the corner.  That means you will want to backtrack
at times to give them room to thrash.  It is much easier to zone an enemy
out than to rush them down.  Keep that in mind.

----------------------
THINGS TO KEEP IN MIND
----------------------

-Blackheart's short attacks are the ones you want to focus on attacking the
 opponent with, since they are so good at closing off the areas in which
 sprites are usually equipped to attack.  Jabs are only for air-to-air
 confrontations and the occasional "whiff attacks to act like you want to
 fight" tactic.

-Blackheart is a unique character in that he immediately benefits from
 projectile assists (Sentinel/Doom) just as readily as anti-air assists
 (Cyclops/Commando).  This is because his style of play is designed to zone
 the opponent, and does not require any engagement to win matches.

-Remember that Inferno, whether you cancel it into a super or use an assist
 to make it safe, is a gambit.  There's always a chance that the opponent
 can evade all your attacks and hit you, which can cost you the match.  Most
 of all, it's important to never underestimate your enemy.

-On the other hand, if your opponent refuses to attack at all, some outright
 mocking could be in order.  Timing out a match is fine as long as there's
 a rhythm to it, but there's nothing to be learned from a match where you
 just stare at each other.  Calling Sentinel/Doom while taunting is an
 easy way to force action; or, you could do physical signs of not caring
 about the match.

-In a situation where Blackheart is all on his own, you have to acknowledge
 that you probably can't win the match.  With that being said, he does more
 damage on average than other people do with simply normal moves, and his
 priority is amazing, so you want to focus on drawing out attacks and hitting
 with short but sweet combos.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

=====================
5. TEAM SPECIFIC TIPS
=====================

-----------------
Blackheart vs MSP (Magneto/Storm/Psylocke)
-----------------

When your Blackheart has become efficient at performing patterns, he will
basically be your trump card against MSP players.  Blackheart is good enough to
win at least one match on out-zoning alone, so you want to take at least one
win on the score table.

Basically, the Blackheart team that is best equipped to combat MSP is Team
Watts (named for Mike Watson, who took this team to Japan in a legendary
exhibition match between America and Japan).  This team is Sentinel/Blackheart/
Commando, with Sentinel starting.

Your Sentinel doesn't have to do much here.  There is a very basic trap with
Sentinel and Blackheart that most Magneto players are hard pressed to escape:
dash backwards, low/stand fierce while calling Blackheart, cancel into drones
(QCF+kick).  Vary and change up the trap.  In many ways, this is the MvC2
equivalent of the fireball/dragon punch trap.

The goal here is to build enough meter to get Blackheart in before Magneto can
get in Storm; this way, you can have a sizable lead to sit on.  You have to
watch out for Magneto dashing up to you and hitting you during flight, which
can end the match in a hurry.

The preferred way to get in Blackheart is through a DHC of a blocked or
connected Hyper Sentinel Force into a Heart of Darkness.  You can also try
tagging in Blackheart after an HSF, although it carries an element of risk.

Once you do that, you are going to probably end up fighting Storm with
Blackheart/Sentinel.  Call Sentinel conservatively and stay in half screen
range so that Storm is not free to typhoon into Hail Storm, which does
a lot of chip damage to BH.  As long as you don't give anything away, this
match is free.

The main issue in this match is distance.  You don't want the opponent to
get close ever.  Well-executed MSP players will force you into a guessing
situation every time, and they have the Psylocke bailout in case they
fail to attack you.  To combat this, you want to draw out Psylocke and
hammer her with either drones or Commando every time.  Make your opponent
hesitant to call her.

Things to remember in this match:
*In the opening matchup of Magneto vs. Sentinel, remember that Magneto can
 call Storm as an assist, which, while unwise, can mess up your jump back
 fierce pattern.  Sentinel's drones will attack Storm at the cost of some
 damage to himself, but hopefully Blackheart will pin Magneto long enough
 for it to not matter very much.

*Your goal, as stated, is to get in Blackheart before Magneto can get in
 Storm.  To do this, you must watch the opponent's meter; once he gets two,
 he can bring in Storm basically at will, and catch you in the middle of
 your patterns.  If this happens, be ready to block, and prepare yourself,
 because your enemy is forcing you to fight him with Sentinel instead.

*If you succeed in your mission of bringing in Blackheart first, then your
 goal becomes to kill Magneto, which is basically only possible if the
 opponent lets it happen.  If he chooses to keep in Magneto for XYZ reasons,
 you want to try to be a little more aggressive, albeit cautious of the
 Psylocke bailout.  Remember that he can still bring in Storm at will.

*If you can predict with accuracy that Magneto will triangle jump, then
 do Sentinel's snapback on faith, and go for an unblockable setup when
 Psylocke comes in.  If you can kill Psylocke, then the match is all but
 won.

*In situations where you're forced to pick less than ideal teams (for
 example, Doom/Blackheart/Commando), alter your goal so that the focus
 is on bringing in Blackheart as soon as possible.  If you keep yourself
 focused on one idea, then you will execute that much better with less
 on your mind.

----------------------
Blackheart vs Santhrax (Storm/Sentinel/xxx)
----------------------

This is not an ideal situation to have to play a Blackheart team against,
because while Blackheart is better than Storm at runaway, Storm has to do
less than Blackheart.  She can chip him almost at will with Hail Storm, while
Blackheart has to pin Storm down to do guaranteed chip, and even then, if
the opponent chooses Cable as a third player, it may not be an option.

If the player starts Sentinel instead, things look a little better on your
side as a careful Blackheart player actually has the advantage over Sentinel.
It's important to keep a calm head whichever way the fight goes, and make
the best of your team.

I like playing Doom/Blackheart/Commando against this team best because it is
the team I feel the most flexible playing, but your mileage may vary.  Your
goal is to force the other opponent into the defensive while doing more
chip to him than he can do to you.

This is a fight that is not over until it's over, since Storm and Sentinel
are both more than capable of making comebacks, and the third character
will probably have a mental advantage over you since you've worked so hard
to defeat the first two characters.  Don't give anything away.

Storm has basically two ways of playing this match if she starts: runaway
or aggressive.  Runaway has the advantage of being all but guaranteed, but
carries an initial risk of getting the lead in the first place.  Aggressive
Storm playing is hard to do well, but with Sentinel in the middle she
can afford to put herself on the line more since one hit will allow for
game-turning damage, if not the loss of one of your characters.

You'll have to do a little bit of sacrificing to force Storm into the
defensive, and call assists more liberally than usual.  Stay vertically
on top of her, trying to drop demons onto her face so she can't hail.  If
she runs, do Inferno, since it's safe for the most part if she's all the
way on the top of the screen.  Watch out for Lightning Attacks, because
eventually she will try to bait you into throwing something she can hit with
that.

Sentinel will either try to play the hand that Storm deals to it, or
attempt to complete the match altogether with full-on aggression.  How
you deal with this is largely up to you.  There's no real guaranteed way of
getting out of the match with an assured win.  To keep a cool head is the
most important thing.

Remember that unlike MSP, the team "Santhrax" requires a calm mind to perform.
If you can shake their mind up while keeping your own sound, it's less simple
than it looks on paper to make comebacks.  Sentinel is a complex character
in terms of execution.  If you do your job of forcing the opponent on the
defensive, you can hope for the domino effect.

Things to remember in this match:
*If you choose to play Team Watts, you can match Storm's drones with
 your own.  However, excessive calling of drones can get you in trouble
 if Sentinel is up next.  In any case, if I were to play that team, I would
 start Sentinel since I'm confident that my Blackheart can fight Sentinel
 in any situation, if not win.

*You can't do jumpback fierce on Storm from half screen because it's
 too easy for her to just mozy on to you and kick you, which in the case
 of Santhrax mean you probably just lost Blackheart.  This is why it's
 important to know your ranges and know when to be the aggressor.

*If the third character is Cable, you must be aggressive, because any
 chip damage gambit risks a counter negation.  And even if you decide
 to do Judgment Day instead of HOD, there is still the possibility that
 Cable will succeed at doing the AHVB.

*Killing Storm is not as important as getting her to give up the idea
 that she can fight you; so regardless of the quality of your opponent,
 don't think about killing her as much as putting the other guy on the
 defensive.  That is what is called "dictating the pace".

*In a tournament situation, it is better to match a Santhrax team with
 your own; Blackheart is too much of a liability since it is easy to
 out-turtle him.  Exceptions are only when the player is obviously
 beneath your level (in other words, if he can't triangle jump or dash
 well).

--------------------------
Blackheart vs "Team Scrub" (Sentinel/Cable/Commando)
--------------------------

So called because it's easy to force the opponent to fight at your own
pace.  You're basically accepting that you must battle your enemy on
his terms by playing a Blackheart oriented team.  Fortunately, it is
possible to get that to work for you.

First of all, if they start Sentinel, you can start Blackheart, in
which case the strategy backfires.  By baiting out his assists and
covering the air with "pigs", you can actually make Sentinel come at
you in your home turf, which means eventually he becomes stuck fishing
for a counter opportunity into AHVB.  Don't give it to him, and if
he tags in Cable do not hesitate to snap in Commando.

Doom/Blackheart/Commando is a team I like to use here because even
though every time I call Blackheart he's vulnerable to damage, I can
measure the kind of opponent I am fighting by using the team.  If the
opponent is overdefensive, it's basically a free win because Sentinel
simply cannot just not respond to the Doom/Blackheart trap.  Or, if he
is aggressive, I can use my knowledge of Doom's priorities to force him
to rethink his plan.

The big, big problem is Cable.  Because Cable is in this match, no
matter how well you do against Sentinel, it can go either way.  So
much is dependent on execution that you have to watch every move you
make.  Don't do special moves when a normal move is sufficient.  And
don't do a normal move when doing nothing is better.

When Cable is in, as hard as it may be, you want to kill him.  The only
way to do this is by hitting him repeatedly.  Other character matchups
can afford to hope for two or three hits, but because Blackheart
doesn't have a safe super combo, he'll have to work extra hard to
achieve this goal.

Since super combos are pointless on Cable anyway, go for chip damage when
he superjumps: Inferno into Judgment Day or even Heart of Darkness if
the spacing is right and he's forced to block.  (Of course, he could
take the hit, in which case it's your ass; you should be aware of this.)

Execution, execution, execution.  Strategy is almost redundant here;
you just want to have a plan and pull it off correctly.  To a certain
extent, "Team Scrub" is a team that will defeat itself if you don't
give the enemy an inch.  It doesn't have good team chemistry; no safe
way to bring Cable in, and no real clear-cut defense against rushdown
if Cable starts.

Things to remember in this match:
*Cable's big moves: Electrap (grenade), stand fierce, jump fierce,
 Viper Beam and to a lesser extent crouching fierce.  The important
 thing about his fierce attacks is that they are actually projectiles,
 but the bullet is invisible.  The opponent is probably waiting for
 some kind of visual signal to super you.  Be aware of this.

*Air-to-air vs. Sentinel is a place where you have to be aggressive;
 you can't just sit back and hurl demons because you leave yourself
 open to "random" Rocket Punches.  Force your way in with jabs,
 keeping in mind that the opponent can call Commando.

*Cable has extremely meaty cross-ups, which is made even more
 problematic by the fact that Blackheart is so damn big.  When in
 doubt, stop him from attacking from the air at all with your jumping
 jabs.

*Cable also has a screwed up hit box on his jumping jab which makes
 it an effective anti-air if you try to hit him with jump short.
 What's more, you leave yourself open to getting shot.  So, don't
 do it unless he's pinned.

--------------------
Blackheart vs Spiral
--------------------

Spiral players come in two flavors: execution machines and showboat combo
players.  Either way, you can probably prevail in the long run against Spiral
on the ease of which you control space alone, but you can't allow the opponent
to have his fun.

Inferno is pretty much always safe on Spiral, which causes her fits because
it keeps her from loading her swords.  Sure, she can hit you, but for how much
damage?  She's only going to risk bringing her next guy in if the opponent
feels she's built enough meter.

If she does load swords, then keep out of her way.  Superjump, push block,
drop some demons.  Get in close, and go for combos.  It's much riskier for
her to try to attack you, bearing in mind that you have the positional
advantage.

Of course, Spiral doesn't come alone, and you'll have to eventually deal with
Cable/Sentinel or Sentinel/Commando.  I've dealt with this at length above so
that you can hopefully form your own conclusions; but it's important to try
your best to kill Spiral.  Few things kill a win easier in this match than
being forced to block Spiral assists.

Things to remember in this match:
*Spiral outreaches you.  It's important to remember that when you choose to
 attack her.  You have to earn the range first.

*If caught in the Spiral/Sentinel trap, it's important to stay calm and
 remember that whether or not you choose to guard cancel to get out, you're
 probably going to take a few hits.  (Guard cancel is pushblocking, then
 allowing the stick to go to neutral, which keeps you in block stance for a
 set period of time.  This allows you to escape multi-hit block patterns.)

*There's another possibility in this match; that the opponent will start
 Cable and pin you with Viper Beams while calling Spiral assist.  Blackheart
 doesn't have a suitable response to this, so either start your teammate or
 pick a team better equipped to deal with this.

--------------------------
Blackheart vs Strider/Doom
--------------------------

Honestly, I wouldn't worry too much about this match because an opponent
who uses this team is burning off a lot of steam and relying on the idea that
you will either sit back and block his trap or thrash to get out and take
enough damage to die outright.

Instead, play this match like Spiral, with character-oriented exceptions.
First off, Strider's teleport makes you more open to being crossed up if you
super jump.  Keep that in mind.

Also, you are just not going to beat Strider in a normal-to-normal game.
When it's Strider vs. Blackheart, it almost comes down to a game of dueling
assists, and the Strider/Doom trap relies on Strider calling the assist at
precise points, whereas you can be more liberal with yours.

Other than that, there's not much to this match other than staying calm and
not playing all your hands too early.  There's one thing I want to emphasize,
however.  If the Strider player makes an execution error, TAKE ADVANTAGE OF IT.
They're already showing their masochism by playing such a difficult team.

Things to remember in this match:
*Doom on point can potentially hassle you because his jumping fierce cuts off
 all your good superjump angles.  Instead, get close and rush him down.  He
 basically can't pin you with photons if you use the ground dash.

*A good Strider/Doom player will only call Doom assist towards the end of his
 super (Ouroburos), so if you end up having to block, it's not panic time yet.
 After the super ends, you're forced to use guard cancelling and possibly
 taking hits in order to get clear.

*In the immortal words of a poster at Shoryuken.com, Strider takes hits like
 every part of his body was his nuts.  Don't worry too much if you are losing
 initially, because you'll probably kill Strider if you hit him.

------------------------
Blackheart vs Blackheart
------------------------

I don't even want to talk about this matchup because it's gross.  Basically,
you have to do the opposite of whatever the opponent does to win, and it's
sloppy as hell.

The only advantage you might have here is that the Blackheart player could be
one of the old types that thinks superjump roundhouse is the move to do.  This
is stopped rather easily with Infernos.

Also, Blackheart players that overuse Infernos are not difficult to deal with
since BH can escape with a swift air dash, but there's not much he can do to
convince the opponent not to try it again.

Other than this, there is not much I can tell you.  I haven't fought many
Blackheart players that have thought the matchups as thoroughly through as I
have.  Most people only use him as a "scrub counter character" and simply
play patterns.

Things to remember in this match:
*if your team has Cable on it, get Cable matched up against Blackheart.  This
 is almost too easy, especially if the BH player is predictable.

*The Blackheart assist is worth the price of admission sometimes, but the
 price you pay for it is a long period without an available assist.  So if the
 opponent attempts BH traps, stay calm and get out when the Inferno goes away -
 NOT before.  There are two hits of the Inferno, and trying to superjump out
 often results in you getting plugged by the second hit.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

================
6. KEY MATCH-UPS
================

---------------------
Blackheart vs Magneto
5:5
---------------------

Given that all things are even and the Magneto player has perfect execution,
this match can go either way because it's so difficult for Mags to get in
range; but, he's in the perfect distance to do a cross-up at the beginning of
the match.

That said, Magneto must be approached rather differently if he's carting
Psylocke.  Psylocke's pretty much Magneto's favorite assist as it allows him
to control the matchup any time he gets close.  It's even more important to
bait the assist in that case.

For some reason, Blackheart has a more difficult time than other characters
with blocking Magneto.  I suspect that the reason for that may be because
Blackheart has an extra crouching frame where he is vulnerable; however, it
may simply be a psychological issue on my part.  I won't say anything just
yet.

But that aside, BH vs. Magneto on your side relies on not giving anything away;
in other words, not doing any unnecessary attacks that your opponent can
hit.  The one thing to remember here is that while Magneto has the advantage
in the top-down game if you're grounded, the reverse is also true in the
opposite situation.

-------------------
Blackheart vs Storm
4.5:5.5
-------------------

This fight is in some respects a lot like BH vs. Magneto, and in other ways
a lot different. It is the same in that if Storm is rushing down, you deal
with it in much the same way as you would against Magneto.

The differences are in Storm's distance game. A Typhoon will make you
think twice about countercalling on Storm's assists, whereas with Magneto you
don't really care. So you probably want to ignore Storm's assists unless you
know she is not in a position to counter. Alternately, from fullscreen you
could throw an Inferno to trade, although it's not safe since she can cancel
into Hail Storm.

If Storm is doing nonsense in superjump space, either charge meter or throw
Infernos to try to get her. From a certain height up, non-cancelled Infernos
are pretty safe (especially if she's already lightning attacked). If she tries
to do vertical typhoons, stop that immediately with Inferno cancelled into
super. If you can't do one in time, just block - she can only do one safely (if
she does another, you know what to do.)

Hail Storm is a move that can annoy Blackheart, since he spends a lot of time
throwing demons to charge meter. However, if you watch the icon at the
bottom of the screen when superjumping around, you should be able to tell when
Storm begins a Hail Storm and airdash to go into block when the hail comes out.
Contrary to popular belief, random hail storms don't own BH.

----------------------
Blackheart vs Sentinel
4:6
----------------------

I rate this match so closely because while Sentinel can do a lot of damage off
of a Blackheart mistake, it is reliant on BH actually making one.  The
Sentinel player has to be the one to force errors on your part, so as long
as you don't get hypnotized by his offensive omnipotence, you can play it cool.

SJ.Fierce is THE BEST MOVE at any given time on grounded Sentinel. It keeps him
from flying, and the fact that you are waiting to airdash means he can't peg
you for free with an unblockable low fierce on the way down. Wait it out to see
what he does. If he jumps after you, airdash. Whether you do this forward or
backward depends on how far out the fierce demons will cover you. You shouldn't
be too scared of jump fierce, since mashing on your jab stuffs the move clean.

SJ.Roundhouse are also good moves to throw on the screen, but keep in mind that
this move doesn't actually PIN Sentinel, and you have to take that into account
if he ever figures it out.

Most of the time, if you can isolate Sentinel from his assist and are in an
in-close situation, best move is to call your projectile assist and jump short,
jump forward. This is hard to respond to.

Air judgement day is fun if Sentinel gets cute and decides trying to launch you
out of the air is the thing to do.  It is also the best response to attempts to
punish your assists with Rocket Punch xx HSF (which a lot of Sentinel players
still haven't learned is a bad idea on Blackheart).  Just watch out for DHCs.

--------------------
Blackheart vs. Cable
2.5:7.5
--------------------

I'm not going to mince words. Blackheart does not beat Cable. All other things
being equal, BH gets pasted by him. But if you choose to play BH seriously, it
is a match you will run into over and over again, and you don't always have the
option to DHC into Sentinel or someone who can handle the match better.

The match boils down to Dos and Don'ts, which I'll summarize forthwith:

DO:
* Try to stay directly above Cable. This is the position you want to be in,
  where you are safest from his AAA and he is in a poor position to hit you.
  The thing about this is that Cable doesn't have a lot of good ways to KEEP
  YOU from doing this once you've gotten above him. If you can isolate Cable
  from his assist, you can get an offense going.
* Remember: Cable can't change the direction of his jump. THE MOST IMPORTANT
  ASPECT OF THIS MATCH-UP. BH has more freedom to move up and down than Cable
  because of this. If you can goad Cable into superjumping, you get an
  opportunity to get in on him. Even if he jumps, if you can maneuver your way
  past his line of fire, you can get in on him.
* Rush a Cable without a viable anti-air. Blackheart has a way easier time on a
  Cable carting only drones or rocks as defense. Jump in relentlessly and get
  him to the corner where you can safely chip and get some damage in.

DON'T:
* Try to chip Cable out of the corner. It's tempting, but ultimately not worth
  it since it gives Cable an opportunity to zap you. I wouldn't even try to
  chip a team with Cable on it unless they didn't have the meter it took to 
  hurt me.
* Attempt to bait out AHVB. Also not worth it, unless you know the timing.
  There are only two ways I bait out AHVB with BH - calling Sentinel on a Cable
  that can't kill him, and superjump rh xx airdash back. The latter is 
  exceptionally risky unless you know the timing, and I've done it often enough
  for it to work, but the times I fail...
* Throw demons on unguarded Cable. The rule I generally follow with people who
  can throw stuff down is, DON'T DO IT unless they're blocking something first.
  This is exceptionally important with BH vs. Cable. Make sure they're blocking
  an anti-air assist or possibly another set of demons before throwing them.

==========
7. CREDITS
==========

* As in all things, I thank Grace and Passy, my true loves.  Until we are
  reunited on the other side, you both are always in my heart.

* Campbell Tran (Buktooth88) - for supplying the format which I shamelessly
  stole.  Sorry, man, it's every theory fighter for himself in the modern 
  age! ;)

* Tom & Tony Cannon (Inkblot and Ponder) - for working hard to keep the Capcom
  fighting game scene (as well as the fighting game scene in general) alive.
  Keep up the good work!

* SooYoung Chon (SooMighty) - for just being cool.

* Josť Lafaurie (Joe Zaza) - my brother and my inspiration as a competitive
  gamer.  He showed me that it's possible to not give a damn about the outcome
  of a match and yet still care about it.

* Eric Foley (StiltMan) - You taught me that regardless of all the planning
  in the world, it's pointless if you don't account for the other opponent
  not simply sitting back and allowing you to execute it.

* Chris MacDonald (Kao Megura) - He basically created the standard for the
  FAQ and for what information it is expected to provide.  He is gone, but
  his work will live on.  Rest in peace.

* James Games scrubs for keeping me centered in the real world.  Some of
  them have real potential in the future (Mike, Lonnie), others are
  hopeless excuse-making machines (Sammy, Ruben), but overall I always
  enjoy the experience of fighting them.

* Tomo Ohira, Jeff Schaeffer, Mike Watson and Jason Wilson - they basically
  set the stage for what the scene is today, and I think we all personally
  owe them a debt of gratitude; even if MvC2 is not their game, the fact is,
  you wouldn't be trying so hard to win without their efforts.

* The Duel Monsters Expert gang - Devourer of Souls, Dante, Rumia, Kitsune,
  Hisui and the rest.  They have little to do with this document in and of
  itself, but they've been good friends for me in this trying period where
  I don't actually compete very much.  Friends are an important part of any
  project.

* And finally, The Brothers Chaps because Homestar Runner is the only thing
  that keeps me from going off the deep end these days.  It's dot com!

If you have questions, you can contact me at <vm underscore postitnotes at
yahoo dot com>.

=====================================
 (c) 2005-2009 Chips-Fey Productions.
=====================================