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    Karin by JCulbert

    Version: 1.0 | Updated: 01/01/70 | Printable Version | Search Guide | Bookmark Guide

    Sony Playstation (Import)
    version 1.0
    by John Culbert <tigeraid@fighters.net>
    June 1999
    This Guide and all others are available at:
    FINALLY got SFZ3 for my PSX a little while ago, and needless to say, I'm
    impressed. While I can understand the community's bitching about the
    problems with the game, I still find it's far more balanced and enjoyable
    to play than the Vs. games, or even the other more recent games like Rival
    Schools or Pocket Fighter. I never got the chance to play this game in the
    arcade (yes, believe it :P ) so I certainly have a lot of catching up to do
    with you guys, and I am learning fast.
    Karin seems to be a pretty popular character, as she already has a few guides 
    written for her... however this one's a little more up to date ;). Karin is 
    similar in many respects to a virtua fighter character, with gameplay centering 
    over setting up for juggles, and the use of her reversals. This guide will focus 
    heavily on A-ism Karin, since it is arguably her strongest version, and the one 
    that you can really have fun with.
    WHY A-ISM?
    IMO, the only ism that Karin really excels in is A-ism, due to her Supers and 
    the air blocking ability. The Kanzuki-ryuu Shinpikaibyaku is a high-damage SC 
    that can connect fairly easily as an air counter or in juggles. More 
    importantly, the Kanzuki-ryuu Hou Ou Ken is also available in this ism as well 
    as X-ism, but it is a very high damage SC, that has excellent priority, and good 
    recovery if blocked (PLUS the L2 can set up for juggles, *phew*). A huge way to 
    do damage with Karin other than juggles is with the Kanzuki-ryuu Hou Ou Ken--it 
    can take some practice, and it definetely takes some balls, but you can use it 
    up close to snuff pretty much ANYTHING.
    MONOSPACE, DAMMIT! :) If the dots above line up with the numbers above them,
    then you can read this document with ease. If they aren't lined up, the
    margins will be all screwy and generally make this a bitch to read. It was
    created using EditPad, and as such it is best viewed by this.
    I'm getting sick of the bullshit going around with others stealing FAQ
    writer's hard work without permission or credit. A certain unmentionable
    gaming mag stole A2 stuff from me a while ago (*ahem*EGM*cough*hack), and
    on-line people who don't want to put effort into doing this stuff also
    copied from me (this means you, Davis!!) So here it is:
    All work and information contained within this document Copyright 1998
    John Culbert <tigeraid@fighters.net> unless otherwise stated.
     This FAQ is for private and personal use only.  It can only be
     reproduced electronically, and if placed on a web page or site, may be
     altered as long as this disclaimer and the above copyright notice
     appears in full. Any information used from this document, quoted or no,
     should have this author's name somewhere clearly as acknowledgement. Feel
     free to distribute between others, but this FAQ is not to be used for
     profitable/promotional purposes; this includes being used by publishers of
     magazines, guides, books, etc. or being incorporated into magazines, etc.
     in ANY way. This document was created by John Culbert
     <tigeraid@fighters.net>. Give credit where it is due.
    Street Fighter Zero 3, Street Fighter Alpha 3, and all other 0characters and 
    game information copyright 1998/1999 Capcom Entertainment. 
    PP = any two punches simultaniously
    KK = any two kicks simultaniously
    PPP= any three punches simultaniously
    KKK= any three kicks simultaniously
    J. = Jumping
    S. = Standing
    C. = Crouching
    XX = Cancel/buffer into Special Move or Super Combo
    QCT= Quarter Circle Toward (roll the joystick from D to F)
    QCB= Quarter Circle Back (roll the joystick from D to B)
    HCT= Half Circle Toward (roll the joystick from B to D to F)
    HCB= Half Circle Back (roll the joystick from F to D to B)
     + = enter commands simultainiously
    FB = Fireball or similar motion (QCT)
    DP = Dragon Punch or similar motion (F,D,D/F)
    SPD= Spinning Piledriver or similar motion (roll 270)
    SC = Super Combo
    VC = Variable Combo
    The game is divided into three main modes, V-ism, X-ism and Z-ism. V-ism is
    a mode where only Variable Combos can be used, with no Super Combos
    available (see below).
    Z-ism is basically identical to Zero/Alpha play, like SFA2; Each character
    has multiple SCs with 3 levels on the meter, and they can air block, Zero
    Counter, Taunt, and tech hit Throws.
    X-ism is similar to ST (Super Street Fighter 2 Turbo) in that you cannot
    air block, taunt, Zero Counter, or tech hit Throws , and your character can
    only perform one SC (with one large Super meter). In addition however,
    characters in X-ism do more damage with each hit than Z-ism and V-ism.
    Available in PSX version only, Saikyou, Mazi and Classical. Saikyou, named
    after Dan Hibiki's fighting style, means "Strongest"--in this mode, you do
    less damage per hit, your guard meter (see below) is DRASTICALLY shortened, you 
    dizzy twice as easily, and you cannot cancel ground attacks into special moves. 
    Obviously, it's a sweeter victory if you beat your opponent while using this 
    Mazi means "Serious"--your opponent needs only to beat you ONE round to
    win, while you have to beat them two rounds to win (as normal). In addition
    the damage you take is increased, however the damage that YOU inflict is
    GREATLY increased.
    For Classical, it essentially means that your character is reverted to
    their Classic version; in addition to doing the slightly increased damage
    you do in X-ism mode and having all your character's X-ism "quirks" (eg.
    Chun Li's in her old costume), you also lose the ability to flip out at all
    in the air, you cannot reduce guard damage at all, you have NO Super meter,
    but also no Guard meter (which can be a plus.)
    VARIABLE COMBO (V-ism only) 
    Similar to Custom Combos from SFA2, but some differences. You can now move
    about freely, including jumping, instead of walking forward only. You
    engage a VC by pressing a Punch + Kick of same strength. The strength
    of buttons you use determines how far APART your shadows are, and thus how
    far apart they hit. Jab+Short has the shadows closest together,
    Fierce+Roundhouse has them the furthest apart. Once activated, you have
    until the meter runs out to string together a combo, all Special Moves lose
    their recovery time, allowing you to cancel one into another constantly, as
    with CCs from SFA2--if done right, you can do a HUGE combo that the
    opponent cannot flip out of... or, you can demolish their Guard Meter as
    well :P.
    To block attacks, hold B or D/B. You can also block in the air (Z-ism or 
    V-ism only).
    SFZ3 now features a small meter below your health bar, which varies in size
    depending on the ism. As you block hits, this meter decreases (it also
    slowly recharges itself). If this meter is completely depleted by your
    opponent, a Guard Break will occur and your character will flash with
    stunned animation, allowing the opponent to get in some free attacks. This
    was put into the game presumably to deter turtlers, but V-ism players can
    take HUGE advantage of this, since a decent-sized V-ism combo can DESTROY a
    full Guard Meter, opening you up for a combo anyways... sorta like, take
    the  VC, or block it all, then eat a combo after :(.
    Throws and Grabs are no longer done with a single motion and button. All
    Throws are now performed with F+PP or B+PP; most characters also have a
    F+KK or B+KK Throw as well. Every character can also perform a Throw in
    the air.
    To flip out of a Throw and reduce the damage done to you, perform a Throw
    motion just as you are being grabbed.
    GROUND RECOVERY (Z-ism, V-ism only) 
    To recover from a knockdown, press KK. You can hold F to prolong the roll as 
    To flip when you're knocked up or through the air, press PP, D+PP or B+PP. It is 
    crucial that you make this an automatic REFLEX in most cases, though
    sometimes the juggle you try to avoid will hit you anyways...
    You can reduce the amount of damage when you block by tapping B or D/B JUST
    as their attack is reaching you, as opposed to just holding it before they
    Borrowed from the Virtua Fighter and Tekken series, you can now perform
    Counter Hits by hitting the opponent during the initial frames of their
    attack. When this occurs, you will do increased damage and in some cases,
    launch them for a juggle.
    ZERO COUNTER (Z-ism, V-ism only) 
    Known as Alpha Counters in North America. These are now performed
    differently as well--as you block an attack, tap F and press any
    Punch + any Kick of the same strength. These take one level of your Super
    meter, but altogether are just plain bad in SFZ3; most are very low
    priority and rarely hit, and when they do, they do pitiful damage...
    Certainly not worth a level off the Super meter.
    -Guren Ken:		QCT+P,P...
    		-->		Hou Shou: F+P
    		-->		Moujin Kyaku: K
    		-->		Ressen Chou: D/F+P,P
    		-->		Ressen Ha: U+K
    		-->		High Yasha Gaeshi: B+P
    		-->		Low Yasha Gaeshi: B+K
    		-->		Daisokubarai: D+K
    -Hou Shou: 		F,D,D/F+P
    -Mujin Kyaku:		F,D,D/F+K
    -Ressen Chou:		B,D,D/B+P,P
    -Ressen Ha:	      	D,D/F,F,U/F+K
    -Yasha Gaeshi (High): 	QCB+P
    -Yasha Gaeshi (Low): 	QCB+K
    -Arakuma Inashi:	roll 270+K
    -Elegant Kick:		F+Forward
    -Elbow Drop:		F+PP or B+PP (close)
    -Knee Smash:		F+KK or B+KK (close)
    -Air Elbow Drop:	F+PP or B+PP (close in mid-air)
    -Zero Counter (Z-ism); S.Fierce: F+P+K after blocking
    -Zero Counter (V-ism); C.Roundhouse: F+P+K after blocking
    -Super Combo 1; Kanzuki-ryuu Hou Ou Ken: QCT,QCT+P
    -Super Combo 2; Kanzuki-ryuu Shinpikaibyaku: QCT,QCT+K
    Just a quick little jab, in both cases, can be linked twice. Good all around 
    poking attack up close but next to no range.
    S.Strong is a quick body blow, and C.Strong is a quick punch to the legs with 
    her arms spread. Both have excellent up-close priority and can cancel well into 
    her Special Moves... use a lot up close to snuff low attacks. J.Strong is a 
    horizontal punch which has good air-to-air priority.
    Karin spreads her arms wide and strikes downard with a chop for S.Fierce--
    EXCELLENT priority for some reason, also semi-reliable as an air counter. 
    C.Fierce is an uppercut which is also a good air counter, though not quite as 
    fast as S.Fierce. J.Fierce is a downward chop with a very slight delay on it, so 
    other jump-ins are generally better.
    VERY fast shin kick for both Short kicks, they can be linked multiple times and 
    are quite fast. Use a lot up close.
    S.Forward is a great standing front kick, with good priority. Excellent attack 
    for poking and snuffing slower regular attacks. If it connects it can be 
    buffered--up close, she hits with the knee first making it connect even faster. 
    Excellent all around attack. C.Forward is fairly quick as well, but lacks a good 
    bit of range and cannot be cancelled. J.Forward is a good jump-in kick.
    S.Roundhouse is a rather slow spinning low kick, not very good at all. 
    C.Roundhouse is a basic two-foot sweep, knocks the opponent down but not 
    particularily fast. I don't know if it beats the Shoto's C.Roundhouse, anyone?
    Guren Ken
    Any of these follow-ups listed can be done after either the 1st or 2nd Punch of 
    the Guren Ken, with the acception of the Hou Shou, which can be done with 
    QCT+P,P,P or QCT+P,F+P. These punches do NOT come out instantly, since Karin 
    steps forward first before striking--the motions must be buffered. These should 
    not be used exclusively as combos, since only one of the rushes will connect 
    altogether--these are used more to mix up the finishers and confuse the 
    opponent, knocking them down or setting up for a mean juggle.
    Hou Shou: comes out quite fast and knocks the opponent away, with slightly 
    better recovery than the stand-alone version.
    Mujin Kyaku: This will set up for juggles, and usually is safed if blocked. It 
    does NOT come out instantly however.
    Ressen Chou: these are difficult to combo, they must be done VERY fast to 
    connect. However they do decent damage, and due to their priority, they can be 
    delayed to snuff attempted counters.
    Ressen Ha: excellent against opponents who tend to crouch when blocking this 
    rush, as this becomes an overhead--do not throw it in too often, as it has a 
    reasonable start-up lag.
    High Yasha Gaeshi: Should be mixed in heavily, to counter an opponent's 
    counterattack, if you find they like to counter with a high attack, or you screw 
    up the rush--overuse of this move will get you in trouble, they can perform a 
    low attack or a Throw.
    Low Yasha Gaeshi: as with above, use in moderation, or if you screw up the rush.
    Daisokubarai: a low slide, excellent against opponents who block the rushes 
    high, with good recovery--use in moderation.
    Hou Shou
    A powerful single palm strike. This is a simple combo finisher, but more 
    importantly it has GREAT priority, and can snuff or trade with just about any 
    move, however it is a high risk situation due to its horrible recovery. Great 
    damage, next to no range. 
    Mujin Kyaku
    Karin steps forward and performs a high snap kick, hitting upward with the knee 
    and then her foot, knocking the opponent into the air. This move sets up for 
    Karin's major juggles, and comes out and recovers quite fast to boot. Strength 
    of the kick determines range, but the lighter the kick, the faster it recovers 
    as well. The opponent can of course flip out, however it should still be used as 
    often as possible singularily and combos to set up for juggles.
    Ressen Chou
    Karin rushes forward and throws a forearm into the opponent's torso, then 
    follows with an elbow to the face. The second hit can be delayed to mix it up, 
    catching the opponent during an attempted counter. Karin recovers decently from 
    this move, faster than most of her rushes.
    Ressen Ha
    Karin spins forward in an arc, and comes down striking with both arms. Strength 
    of kick determines range and arc of travel. The most notable feature of this 
    move is that the second hit is an overhead, and cannot be blocked low. If 
    blocked she recovers quite fast, however she can be hit out of this move in the 
    air. This move can also be used to hop over projectiles and counter, however it 
    must be anticipated quickly--this cannot clear Sagat's High Tiger Wave.
    Yasha Gaeshi (high)
    Karin raises her arms into a defensive posture--if the opponent connects, she 
    will counterattack and knock the opponent back. If this doesn't counter an 
    attack, it recovers fairly slowly. This can counter any strike (including Dragon 
    Punches and Somersault Kicks), however you will be hit if you attempt to counter 
    the first move of a multi-hit attack (eg. Ken's DP, or Charlies' Roundhouse 
    Somersault Kick)--you also have to make sure that the opponent is within range 
    when this counters or it will miss. NOTE: this counterattack knocks the opponent 
    into the air, so you can snag them with a quick juggle! 
    Yasha Gaeshi (low)
    Karin crouches into a low defensive posture. If the opponent strikes, she 
    counterattacks to knock the opponent away. This is more useful since the 
    majority of foot games up close use low kicks (Eg. Chun Li's C.Forward, 
    Charlie's C.Foward, Cody's C.Short...) As with the High counter, you will be hit 
    by the follow-up moves of a multi-hit attack.
    Arakuma Inashi
    Your basic 360 Throw, Karin grabs the opponent, knees them twice then drops them 
    to the ground. This has an identical whiff animation to a regular Throw. This 
    will do slightly more damage than her regular Throws, and has slightly increased 
    range as well--excellent wake-up move if the opponent is close.
    Elegant Kick
    Similar to Yun/Yang's overhead kick from SFIII, however this has reduced range. 
    This can be snuffed by some quicker low attacks as she doesn't actually leave 
    the ground--fairly quick however. 
    Elbow Drop
    Good all-around Throw that keeps the opponent close.
    Knee Smash
    Capable of more damage than Elbow Drop w/mashing... knocks away further as well.
    Zero Counter (Z-ism); S.Fierce
    Lacks really good range, but can be half-decent against deep jump-ins. However 
    proper use of Karin's Reversals remove the use of this at all ;).
    Zero Counter (V-ism); C.Roundhouse
    Ditto here, it has more range certainly but cannot counter jump-ins because of 
    how low it hits.
    Super Combo 1; Kanzuki-ryuu Hou Ou Ken
    (Karin rushes forward performing multiple palm strikes)
    Basic rush super, this has EXTREMELY high priority on start-up, allowing you to 
    snuff just about anything, and at L3 it can pass through projectiles . The thing 
    to note is, L1 and L3 have pretty bad recovery, but L2 finishes with the Mujin 
    Kyaku, which not only has decent recovery, but can launch as well ;). Range is 
    just about inside sweep distance--excellent get-up move. 
    Super Combo 2; Kanzuki-ryuu Shinpikaibyaku
    (Karin performs an extra high version of her Ressen Ha)
    This will NOT hit a grounded opponent, ONLY airborne opponents. However pretty 
    much all hits will always connect on an airborne opponent (the deeper they jump 
    in, the better), and its priority is quite high. In addition, you can perform 
    this after a Mujin Kyaku or Mujin Kyaku finisher for easy and major damage. 
    COMBOS (difficulty in no particular order)
    1.  J.Forward, S.Strong, Guren Ken x2 -> Hou Shou
    2.  J.Forward, S.Strong, Guren Ken x2 -> Ressen Chou
    3.  J.Forward, S.Strong, Guren Ken x2 -> Mujin Kyaku, S.Strong, Roundhouse       
    Mujin Kyaku
    4.  J.Forward, C.Jab, C.Short, Hou ShouX A V N Elbow ComboJ.Roundhouse,          
    S.Strong, Ressen Chou (fast!)
    5.  S.Short, Roundhouse Mujin Kyaku, Kanzuki-ryuu Shinpikaibyaku
    6.  (approx. half screen from corner) J.Forward, C.Jab -> C.Short,               
    Roundhouse Moujin Kyaku, C.Fierce, Kanzuki-ryuu Shinpikaibyaku, Air        Throw
    7.  Roundhouse, S.Strong, Guren Ken x2 -> Mujin Kyaku, C.Fierce, Kanzuki-        
    ryuu Shinpikaibyaku, Ressen Chou
    8.  High Reversal, S.Strong, Kanzuki-ryuu Shinpikaibyaku
    9.  (corner) Ressen Ha, C.Jab, Kanzuki-ryuu Shinpikaibyaku
    10. counterhit C.Fierce, Kanzuki-ryuu Shinpikaibyaku
    11. J.Roundhouse, C.Short, C.Short, C.Short XX Short Mujin Kyaku, S.Short XX     
    Ressen Ha
    Karin really must stress her rushes to be truly effective at a high level of 
    play. The object of your game should be to hit the Mujin Kyaku to set up for her 
    major juggles. With the opponent knowing this, it can be to your advantage to 
    mix in other techniques, most notably her Throws (esp. the 270) and her 
    reversals. Mixing up the finishers of her rushes is essential to victory. If the 
    Guren Ken connects, continue into the Mujin Kyaku for a juggle, or if you're 
    fast enough, the full Ressen Chou finisher--if the opponent blocks, then it 
    becomes the guessing game. You can follow into the Mujin Kyaku either way, as it 
    recovers quite fast. If the opponent tends to block high more often, mix in the 
    Daisokubarai to knock them off their feet. Alternately, if they tend to block 
    low often, finish with the Ressen Ha. Alternately, you can stop the rush short 
    and buffer in a 270 or one of her regular Throws--Karin has excellent walking 
    speed and thus, even if you're a little bit further away you can walk in and 
    Throw with a fair margin of safety. Overall, the best no-brainer rush is to 
    finish with the Mujin Kyaku, as it sets up for the juggle, and it's safe if 
    For another mix-up, if the opponent likes to counter and snuff attacks often, 
    you can mix in the reversals--for example, a Ryu player may enjoy trying to 
    interrupt your rushes with a Jab DP; if you time it right, you can run into a 
    high reversal to snag him out of it, and even set up a small juggle. Similarily, 
    people who like to counter with low attacks can be tricked into a reversal as 
    well (eg. Cody counters w/C.Short since it allows him an easy juggle). 
    Alternately, you can also use the Ressen Chou and delay the second elbow--after 
    conditioning them into thinking this is coming, delay it to snuff their 
    attempted counter. 
    Throwing Tactics
    As BBH pointed out, a lot of people can be caught off guard by any sort of 
    Throwing from Karin--she is not commonly considered a grappler, but her Arakuma 
    Inashi has good range, and does slightly more damage than her regular Throws. 
    Tossing this in after a rush or blocked Shorts/Jabs can catch the opponent by 
    surprise--this is no SPD or Storm Hammer, but it can certainly be effective when 
    used in moderation. In particular, a J.Short is an excellent set-up due to it's 
    angle of decent, and you can start it early in her jump and still land the tick, 
    preventing a deep air counter. 
    Defensive Strategies
    Against jumping opponents, Karin has a variety of options that can keep the 
    opponent guessing about their timing. In particular, the C.Fierce is a good all-
    purpose air counter, however its horizontal range is not so hot, so make sure 
    the opponent is jumping from fairly close. S.Fierce also works in this fashion, 
    with excellent overall priority. The Kanzuki-ryuu Shinpikaibyaku is also an 
    excellent counter, even moreso because it can't be air blocked--however it must 
    be started early due to its initial start-up time. Another handy counter is her 
    high reversal, which can also set up for a nice juggle; however, it won't work 
    against cross-ups... 
    Again, some character specific strats may be added, or anything provided by you, 
    the readers. If anyone can find some seriously good strats, combos, etc... for 
    X-ism or V-ism, I'll be happy to include them.
    --thanks to BBH aka Sei Kensou for his excellent Karin FAQ from way back   when 
    this first premiered in the arcades.
    --My friendly rival Kao Megura for his excellent (as usual) SFZ3 PSX FAQ.
    --Fellow FN staff members Gouken8, Raging_Demon (raging_de@fighters.net) and   
    Three-11 (three-11@fighters.net) for combo and strategy discussions.
    --cka aka Jason Jamieson (cka@fighters.net), skee aka Ryan Jackson
      (Zapdos3@hotmail.com) and viper600 aka Tyler Stewart
      (viper_600@geocities.com) for A-Blanka, A-Sodom and X-Ken competition
    --the guys (and gals) from EFNet #capcom for various A3 discussions (and       
    bitching of course ;).
    You can access this FAQ and many others at:
    You can e-mail me at: tigeraid@fighters.net
    "I said it before and I'll say it again--democracy simply doesn't work!"
                                              -Kent Brockman, the Simpsons