Soul Calibur II (Console versions)
Assassin in-depth FAQ and Strategy guide.

Version 1.1

Copyright 2004
 

Written by White_Pointer

whitepointer@blood-sports.net

Contents of this Guide:

1.0     Introduction
2.0     Legal Information
3.0     About the game
4.0     What's in this guide?
5.0     Control Conventions
6.0     Unlocking Assassin
7.0     Assassin's Movelist
8.0     Assassin Strategies
9.0     Acknowledgements and Credits

1.0     Introduction
------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Soul Calibur II is the highly anticipated sequel to Soul Calibur, which is 
still regarded as one of the best fighting games of all time. Assassin is a 
new character introduced in Soul Calibur II, and despite seeming similar to 
Hwang from the original, he is not. This guide is an effort to try and create 
a decent Assassin FAQ.

2.0     Legal Information
------------------------------------------------------------------------------

This guide is intended for personal use only. No profit can be made from this 
guide under ANY circumstances, it is to be used for non-profit only. This 
guide will ONLY be hosted on www.blood-sports.net or Gamefaqs, unless you have 
my written consent to publish it on your own site and you MUST e-mail me to 
request my permission to use it. Also, do not publish any section of this 
guide ANYWHERE. Please explain in your e-mail what the theme of your site is, 
the approximate amount of unique visitors you receive each month and what 
materials the site covers. This guide may not be altered in any way, shape, 
or form.

3.0     About the game 
------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Soul Calibur II doesn't stray too much from the original formula as most of 
the gameplay has been left intact and hasn't changed much. Unlike the original 
which was only ported to the Sega Dreamcast, the sequel has been ported to 
three systems, the Nintendo Gamecube, Sony Playstation 2 and Microsoft Xbox, 
each has a unique special guest character. Which version you play is entirely 
up to you, so get out there and enjoy one of the best fighting games, if not 
THE best fighting game released in 2003!

4.0     What's in this guide?
------------------------------------------------------------------------------

This guide is intended to be a full Movelist and FAQ for The character of
Assassin. 

What this guide covers:

- Complete Character Move List
- Strategies and Techniques

If you have any questions about this FAQ, feel free to e-mail me at the 
address specified at the top of this document. But, if you e-mail me just to 
insult or criticise, or your question is already answered in this FAQ 
somewhere, it'll be going straight into my Trash. Capiche? So, if you don't 
get an answer within a day or two, I advise you to have a closer look through 
the FAQ.

If you want a complete character movelist, then check out my complete Soul 
Calibur II FAQ, available on Gamefaqs and www.blood-sports.net.

5.0     Unlocking Assassin
------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Assassin is probably the easiest of the three extra characters (the other two 
are Berserker and Lizardman) to unlock, but will probably be the second one of
the three that you will actually unlock. Just successfully complete Subchapter 
3 mission 2.

Please note: Assassin can ONLY be used in the various Vs. modes, team battle 
mode and practice mode. Don't send me e-mails asking me if he can be played in 
arcade mode or whatever...the answer is no, he can't be.

Keep in mind, Assassin, Berserker and Lizardman only exist in the NTSC 
(North American) and PAL (European and Australian) console versions of the 
game. They don't exist in the Japanese console versions or the arcade version.

6.0     Control Conventions
------------------------------------------------------------------------------

6.1 CONSOLE SPECIFIC DEFAULT BUTTON CONVERSIONS

First off...the console specific default button conversions. You really 
shouldn't need these since they are explained in the instruction manual, but 
this is just for completeness sake.

Gamecube:

A ... A Button
B ... Y Button
K ... X Button
G ... B Button

Playstation 2:

A ... Square Button
B ... Triangle Button
K ... Circle Button
G ... X Button

Xbox:

A ... X Button
B ... Y Button
K ... B Button
G ... A Button

6.2 IN-GAME AND FAQ CONTROL CONVENTIONS

First off I should explain why I have decided to adopt this notation. The 
reason is, quite frankly, the more "accepted" notation, for a lack of a 
better word, sucks (In my opinion, anyway). You want a straight forward 
moves list, not some encoded crap full of numbers and abbreviations that 
makes you need to scroll back up to where the author explained the notation 
just so you actually know how to read a move (let alone understand it). 
No...just...no. 

This is my own notation, and I believe it's much easier to read and much 
easier to understand than the other method. It's nice and consistent, it's 
more to the point, and there's no confusing numbers or abbreviations anywhere. 
Yes, I won't deny that it took me a long time to write this FAQ using this 
convention. But hell, I reckon you'll have a much easier time reading and 
understanding it. You're welcome to e-mail me with any comments about it.

Basic Attacks:

A ... Horizontal Strike
B ... Vertical Strike
K ... Kick
G ... Guard

[A] ... Hold Horizontal Strike
[B] ... Hold Vertical Strike
[K] ... Hold Kick
[G] ... Hold Guard

Slide Inputs:

aA ... Double Tap A very quickly
aB ... Slide from A onto B quickly
aK ... Slide from A onto K quickly
bA ... Slide from B onto A quickly
bB ... Double Tap B very quickly
bK ... Slide from B onto K quickly
kA ... Slide from K onto A quickly
kB ... Slide from K onto B quickly
kK ... Double Tap K very quickly

You may also see extended variations on these such as agA or b^B. Common 
sense would tell you that it means to slide from A to G to A quickly or 
to tap B then Direction Up then B very quickly (respectively). Adapt to 
the situation, although there isn't many cases in the FAQ where you'll 
see something like this, but make a mental note of it anyway.

Movement Directions:

* ... Keep Neutral
-> ... Towards Opponent
<- ... Away from Opponent
^ ... Up
v ... Down
\> ... Diagonal Down/Towards
</ ... Diagonal Down/Away
<\ ... Diagonal Up/Away
/> ... Diagonal Up/Towards

[->] ... Hold Towards Opponent
[<-] ... Hold Away from Opponent
[^] ... Hold Up
[v] ... Hold Down
[\>] ... Hold Diagonal Down/Towards
[</] ... Hold Diagonal Down/Away
[<\] ... Hold Diagonal Up/Away
[/>] ... Hold Diagonal Up/Towards

Miscellaneous: 

, ... Press the button or directions in sequence. E.g. Double tapping 
Towards then A would appear ->, ->, A
+ ... Press buttons together. E.g. Pressing A and B together would be 
shown A+B
~ ... Means the move sets up into another (usually changing stance, 
combining more than one move or moving into Guard Break)
(Alternative) ... An Alternative way to perform a previously listed move
(Delay) ... Wait slightly longer between attack button presses for that 
move
(Cancel) ... Begins the move, then cancels that move before it fully 
completes
(Hold) ... One or more buttons in the move are held down to make the move 
more powerful than it otherwise would be
(Extended) ... An extended version of a previously listed move (usually 
meaning more hits or the move goes on for longer)
(Additional Attack) ... Another attack that can be executed after a 
previously listed move before the opponent can recover

If an alternate button or direction can be pressed, it will appear in 
parentheses () after the first button or direction

7.0     Assassin's Movelist
------------------------------------------------------------------------------

"A Attacks" are those attacks where 'A' (Horizontal Strike) is the first 
attack hit. "B Attacks" are those attacks where 'B' (Vertical Strike) is the 
first attack hit. "K Attacks" are those attacks where 'K' (Kick) is the first 
attack hit. "Throws" are...errr...throws, and "Misc" are moves that don't fall 
into the above categories (normally requiring a stance change or a complicated 
attack sequence).


Note: These are not the official move names as there is no in-game movelist 
for Assassin. I've just used the name of the identical move that Yunsung or 
Xianghua have, and made up my own for Assassin's exclusive moves.

__________

A Attacks:
__________


Blade Song						
A, A, B

Blade Song (Delay)					
A, A, B

Talon Destroyer						
A, A, K, K

Talon Destroyer (Delay)				
A, A, K, K

Cross Lian Hun						
->+A

Striking Lian Hua					
->, ->+A

Striking Lian Hua (Alternative)				
[->]+A

Leg Cutter						
\>+A

Twisting Coils						
v+A

Shin Cutter						
</+A

Chest Slice						
<-+A

Torso Slice						
<-, <-+A

Double Low Swipe
v+A+K

Torso Slice (Alternative)				
[<-]+A

Face Slice						
[/>]([\>])+A

Sword Undercut					
[</]([<\])+A

Double Sword Arc					
A+B

Double Sword Arc (Alternative)				
(Press Any Direction except ->) A+B

Double Sword Arc (Additional Attack)			
A+B (While Enemy is Airborne), A+B

Waving Flame						
->+A+B

Sword Poke						
[<-]+A+B

Great Wall						
->, ->+A+B

Great Wall (Alternative)				
[->]+A+B

Viper's Illusion						
[\>]([/>])+A, B

Viper's Illusion (Hold)					
[\>]([/>])+A, [B]

Willow Dance						
[v]([^])+A, B

Willow Dance (Cancel)					
[v]([^])+A, B, G

Flying Spin Kicks					
A+K

Flying Spin Kicks (Alternative)				
<-(<\ or ^ or /> or ->) A+K

Flying Spin Kicks (Alternative)				
[Hold Any Direction] A+K

Lian Hua Kicks						
[v]+A+K, K

Feng Yun Feint						
aK, B

Double Feng Yun					
aK, K

Rage Fire Blade						
(While Rising) A, B

Rage Fire Blade (Cancel)				
(While Rising) A, B, G

Sword Uppercut					
(While Crouching) A+B

__________

B Attacks:
__________


Burning Sky						
B, B

Burning Sky (Delay)					
B, B

Advancing Rhythm					
->+B, A

Advancing Rhythm (Delay)				
->+B, A

Deadly Rhythm						
->+B, B

Deadly Rhythm (Delay)					
->+B, B

Cyclone Blade Kick					
B, K

Cyclone Blade Kick (Delay)				
B, K

Cyclone Blade Kick (Cancel)				
B, K, G

Shattered Wall						
->, ->+B, B

Shattered Wall (Delay)					
->, ->+B, B

Wall Dance						
->, ->+B, <-+B

Wall Dance (Hold)					
->, ->+B, <-+[B]

Forced Flame Divide					
\>+B

Flame Wave						
v+B, B

Loin Crush						
<-+B

Loin Crush (Hold)					
<-+B

Overhead Waterfall					
</+B

Vengeful Thrust					
<-, <-+B

Vengeful Thrust (Cancel)				
<-, <-+B, G

Pouncing Claws						
/>+B

Cresting Wave						
B+K

Crushing Heel						
</+B+K

Fire Overhead Waterfall					
<-, <-+B+K

Fire Overhead Waterfall (Cancel)			
<-, <-+B+K, G

Rising Sword Upper					
\>+B+K

Cyclone Slash						
bK

Rising Cobra						
[\>]([/>])+B

Eclipse Blade						
[v]([^])+B

Opening Void Thrust					
[</]([<\])+B

Vengeful Thrust (Alternative)				
[<-]+B

Vengeful Thrust (Cancel) (Alternative)			
[<-]+B, G

Fire Overhead Waterfall (Alternative)			
[<-]+B+K

Fire Overhead Waterfall (Cancel) (Alternative)		
[<-]+B+K, G

Forced Heaven						
(While Rising) B

Shiang Gyh Kwei Feint					
(While Crouching) bA

Flame Wave						
(While Crouching) B, B

__________

K Attacks:
__________


Shredding Fangs					
K, K

Sheau Shan Kick					
\>+K

Quick Face Plant					
->+K

Quick Face Plant Combo				
->+K, K

Shin Trip						
v+K

Midriff Winder						
<-+K

Overhead Stomp
^+K

Spinning Roundhouse					
<-, <-+K

Spinning Roundhouse~Spinning Sweep
<-, <-+K, K

Triple Assassin Kick					
->, ->+K, K, K

Double Assassin Kick					
->, ->+K, K

Double Assassin Kick~Side Movement			
->, ->+K, K, v(^)

Warrior Dance						
</+K, A, B

Warrior Step						
</+K, K, B

Striking Fangs						
kgK

Deceptive Swing					
[</]+kA

Spinning Roundhouse (Alternative)			
[<-]+K

Spinning Roundhouse~Spinning Sweep (Alternative)
[<-]+K, K

Triple Assassin Kick (Alternative)			
[->]+K, K, K

Double Assassin Kick (Alternative)			
[->]+K, K

Double Assassin Kick~Side Movement (Alternative)	
[->]+K, K, v(^)

Raging Talons						
[\>]([/>])+K

Roundhouse Kick					
[v]([^])+K

Leg Sweep						
[</]([<\])+K

Rising Shui Shian					
(While Rising) K

__________

Throws:
__________


Heavy Twist						
(Approach Enemy) A+G

Kick Flurry						
(Approach Enemy) B+G

Possessed Sword					
(Approach Enemy from behind) A+G or B+G

Reverse Heavy Twist					
(Approach Enemy from left) A+G or B+G

Revenge Slicer						
(Approach Enemy from right) A+G or B+G

__________

Misc:
__________


None


8.0     Assassin Strategies
------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I've invested a lot of time into this, and now it's time for you to share the
knowledge.

Assassin, when used correctly, is actually a very powerful character. Not to
the point of being overpowered (although if you use some of these strategies 
effectively your opponent may think he is...hehe), he's definitely got his 
weaknesses. The key to using him is trying to minimise the window of 
opportunity your opponent has to exploit the said weaknesses.

He's very much a character where you need to exploit a good portion of his 
moves to truly be effective, and as such, you'll not only need to know which 
of his moves are the best ones to use, but you'll also need to know how you 
can use them to your advantage and in certain situations.

Assassin borrows moves from both Yunsung and Xianghua, but also has quite a
good unique moveset of his own. He doesn't have any confusing stances, but
don't think that makes him a beginner's character. You'll need to invest
quite a bit of time into him to truly be a good player. Assassin is very 
much a close to mid-distance fighter, but does have a couple of surprisingly 
longer distance moves.

Right then, with that stuff out of the way, let's get down to business.

8.1 Full-on attack
******************

If you just sit there defending all day, you'll get nowhere. The good player
knows when to attack. Notice I said 'knows when to attack'. That doesn't 
mean that you constantly stay on the offensive because that's a recipe for 
disaster just as much as continually being on the defensive. 

Some good times to launch into a full-on attack with Assassin:

- When you have your opponent pinned next to the wall or trapped in a corner
- When there is a bit of space put between you and your opponent and you
want to make the first move

Once you have got into a rhythm, Assassin definitely has the tools to keep
your upper hand, but remember that nothing's foolproof and you'll probably 
need to do some defence eventually.

8.1.1 Close Range
-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

Some good moves to launch into a full-on attack strategy at close range are 
the Willow Dance and Talon Destroyer. Since both combos are blockable after 
the first couple of hits, Mix up the full Willow Dance with the Cancelled
version and the normal Talon Destroyer with the delayed version. You can also
mix them up further by randomly just hitting the first couple of hits of the 
combo occasionally too. In that way, unless your opponent is psychic, there's
no way they can see the full combos coming 100% of the time. Assassin's 
mix-up game is extremely important, especially with these two moves. The 
Blade Song is also an excellent move to be using. The first two hits are 
horizontal, making them impossible to sidestep at close range, and then 
you can randomly throw in the last hit. Be warned though that the last hit 
is actually blockable, even if the first two hits connect, so don't use it 
all of the time. So again, mix-up is important (see a developing theme here 
already?). You can actually delay the third hit of this as well if you are 
feeling a little tricky. 

Of course, all of these moves either have mid or high hits, so what are some 
good full-on attack moves that hit low? Good question, young padawan. His 
Double Low Swipe is excellent at close range. It'll hit twice, the first 
hit being an S-Mid (can not be blocked low) and the second a low hit, which 
will catch anyone out who isn't paying complete attention, and also arcs 
around horizontally making it difficult to avoid. He'll also duck down fairly 
low as he does the move meaning most high attacks will simply go over his head. 
Perhaps his most potent close range low attack is the Warrior Step, or 
variations of it. Again, mix-up is the key. Execute just the first hit 
occasionally, it's a greatly disguised sneaky little low hit in it's own 
right. Occasionally stick both kicks in, they both hit low and catch off 
anyone who might be expecting just one. Throw the last hit occasionally 
for good measure too, but use it sparingly. It's a mid hit that's blockable, 
even if the first two hits connect. Use it only when you think you've got 
your opponent fooled, and it'll be the best surprise attack in your arsenal. 
Perhaps throw in the first two hits of the combo 2 or 3 times, then do them 
a 4th time, followed up by the last hit. But you'll need to react to what 
your opponent is doing. Remember, you need to catch them by surprise. Once 
you have your opponent ducking-blocking twice expecting two low hits, that 
would be the perfect time to fool them even more and throw in the Warrior 
Dance, again using the final hit sparingly. This move is also great for 
nailing your opponent while they are lying on the ground.

In case you are wondering, his Deadly Rhythm combo is generally not 
a good idea, you can mix up between one and two hits all day long but the 
second hit (the low one) is well telegraphed and any opponent with half a 
brain has more than enough time to block it, even if the first hit connects. 
His Cyclone Blade Kick is also not a good idea. Both hits hit high, and the 
second hit (the kick) is blockable regardless of whether the first hit 
connected or not. You can throw his Guard Break Loin Crush in occasionally, 
but I personally don't see it as a very good move. Too well telegraphed and 
the recovery time is terrible.

8.1.2 Mid to Far Range
-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Despite his short sword, Assassin is quite adept at mid range combat (although
not brilliant at far range). He's got a number of good mid-range moves that 
can launch you into a full-on assault and are also quite damaging, to boot. 
Again, mix-up is the key.

Pouncing Claws is an awesome move to use once there is some distance between 
yourself and your opponent. Assassin will jump through the air, swinging his
sword is a large vertical arc. It's great for surprising your unsuspecting 
opponents. Even better is that is becomes a guard break after a level 3 soul 
charge. Another awesome move is the Overhead Waterfall. It's quick, and it
reaches a very deceptive distance. The best time to use this move is after you 
have knocked your opponent into the air. Hit them with this move on the way 
down. The Forced Flame Divide requires you to be a little closer to your 
opponent, but works wonders, knocking them into the air if it connects. It's 
also got a fast recovery time making it pretty safe if your opponent blocks
or avoids it. All of these moves can be used to hit your opponent while they 
are on the ground too. The Double Sword Arc is also an excellent (and very 
damaging) move to throw into the mix as well.

Mid-Range low hits? No problem. The Shin Cutter is a great mid distance 
low hit, and is horizontal, to boot. Assassin also ducks pretty low when he 
does this move making it difficult for your opponent to counter it unless they 
anticipated it. To spice up the variety a bit, use the Sword Undercut. The 
button combination is nearly the same (you just need to hold the direction 
rather than tapping it), and it knocks the opponent to the ground when it 
connects. It's a little slower in execution time, and initially it looks 
like a mid hit, so this should fool your opponents pretty well.

Now onto one of my favourite mix-ups. If you want to take matters into your 
own hands and approach your opponent if there is space put between you, the 
Double, Triple and Double~Side Movement Assassin kicks are your best friend. 
Run at your opponent regularly and randomly mix up between the Double and 
Triple Assassin kicks. It doesn't matter if they block all the hits (in fact 
you may initially WANT to have them blocking all the hits) because you are 
setting them up for something better. Once you have them blocking all the 
hits, mix in the Double Assassin Kick~Side Movement. This of course will 
kick twice and then quickly step around the opponent. Your opponent will 
most likely still be blocking, expecting the third kick. This is a PERFECT 
time to execute one of Assassin's powerful throws. Do it quickly though, 
you don't want them anticipating it. Run in, do the two kicks, quickly do 
the side movement and throw in the one motion. With any luck you may even 
get in his throw from behind which is much more damaging than his other 
throws. And the key here? Say it with me everyone...MIXUP! Once you have 
done that a few times, your opponent will no doubt start to anticipate it. 
Once they do, revert back to executing all three Assassin Kicks or just two
if you want to be sneaky, followed up by another little attack.

8.2 Counter Attack
******************

Assassin, although good at a full-on attack level, really comes into his own 
in the counter attack game. Assassin may seem like he has an answer for just 
about anything your opponent tries if you play your cards right. There's two 
forms of what I like to call the counter attack game in SCII...the 
guard/counter and the 8-way run/counter.

8.2.1 Guard/Counter
-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

The Guard/Counter strategy is countering what your opponent throws at you by 
first defending their attack, then executing your own before they have time 
to recover. This includes Guard Impacts and Parries.

The most basic form of this is simply pressing the guard button when your 
opponent attempts an attack. Stand Guard High and Mid hits, Duck Guard Low 
hits. If you successfully stand guard an opponent's attack, quickly counter 
with Burning Sky or the first two hits of Blade Song. Both are very quick 
double sword swipes and give your opponent little room to move. These are 
the two best attacks to use in this situation. If you duck guard, execute  
Forced Heaven or Rising Shui Shian. Both will knock the opponent to the 
ground and give you the upper hand.

More advanced is your Guard Impact and Parry Counter strategies. 

To Parry an attack, press direction towards the opponent and guard as the 
opponent's attack connects. A Parry will push the opponent away and 
temporarily disorientate them. In this situation, Pouncing Claws and 
Overhead Waterfall are two excellent choices in counter moves, or if 
you are feeling lucky and you are quick enough, quickly running up to 
them and throwing isn't a bad idea either. Mix in one of his mid-range 
low hits too every now and then as well.

To Guard Impact an attack, press direction away from your opponent and 
guard as the opponent's attack connects. This pushes the opponent forwards 
and slightly to the side, making them stagger and disorienting them longer 
than a Parry would. However, it's also impossible to hit them with a high 
attack or a throw after a Guard Impact so stick with Assassinís close range 
low attacks if you decide to Guard Impact.

Note that both Parrying and Guard Impacting are advanced strategies and 
require you to really anticipate what your opponent is doing to pull them 
off. If you mis-time them even slightly, you open yourself up to a world 
of hurt.

8.2.2 8-Way Run/Counter
-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

One of my personal favourite strategies is the 8-way run/counter. The 8-way 
run, as the same suggests, is the system that allows you to move in any of 8 
directions by holding that certain direction. The 8 directions are explained
in section 6.0. The 8-way run/counter is what I like to call the strategy of 
avoiding your opponent's attacks and then countering them, rather than 
guarding and countering. The number one rule with Assassin is to constantly 
keep moving. He's got some awesome 8-way run attacks that will win you the 
match easily if you utilise them correctly.

Let's start with the basic 8-way run directions, towards your opponent, 
away from your opponent, up and down.

The Striking Lian Hua and Great Wall are two great horizontal moves to catch 
your opponent off guard. They have deceptive range and will knock them down, 
opening them up to ground attacks. Shattered Wall and Wall Dance...use them.
They are both vertical two-hit combos but do great damage. Mix up between 
these and the two horizontal attacks regularly. I've already covered the 
Double and Triple Assassin Kicks (8.1.2 if you missed it), but just to spice 
it up a little more, hold the direction just a little longer and slide attack 
them occasionally too. Running in and executing the Flying Spin Kicks may not 
be a bad idea occasionally either.

Don't be afraid to retreat from your opponent and make them come and get you
when you are playing as Assassin. The aforementioned Flying Spin Kicks really 
open up a whole different game once you make your opponent come after you. 
They are very quick and will catch them off 9/10 if they are running at you. 
Want something a little more subtle? Mix up the Spinning Roundhouse and the
Spinning Roundhouse~Spinning Sweep. The former will hit high, the latter will
hit high, then low. There's a good degree of safeness in this move too. If 
you want something that has a little more distance, use the Vengeful Thrust. 
It's quite damaging, quite quick and is great for ring outs. Cancel it every 
now and then to fool your opponent into a false sense of security. Throw in 
the Fire Overhead Waterfall occasionally but don't overuse it, it's well 
telegraphed.

I've already covered the Willow Dance (8.1.1), and the other two good moves 
that can be executed by holding up or down are the Eclipse Blade and 
Roundhouse Kick. The Eclipse Blade is probably the better of the two because 
it knocks the opponent airborne, opening up juggle opportunities and ground 
attacks. Use these moves often and constantly step around your opponent's 
vertical attacks.

His diagonal direction 8-way run/counters are fair but not quite as good 
as the others. Viper's Illusion is a great move, but ONLY use the hold 
version if the opponent manages to block the first hit, as the second hit 
will almost always miss if they don't. However, when held, the second hit 
is a guard break, so if the opponent blocks the first, throw in the held 
version. Rising Cobra and Opening Void Thrust are both good mix up moves, 
the former is a mid hit and knocks the opponent skywards, the latter is a 
deceptive low hit. Mix up between these as much as you can. The Leg 
Sweep and Raging Talons are also good moves to occasionally throw in, 
particularly if you have just stepped around an opponent's attack.

Don't forget that his Flying Spin Kicks can be executed if you are 
holding ANY direction, so make good use of them. This, combined with 
the Overhead Waterfall will form one of the most potent attacks in your 
arsenal. Use these two moves a lot.

8.3 Miscellaneous Strategies
****************************

8.3.1 High/Low Mix-up
-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Assassin doesn't have a particularly good high/low mix-up game admittedly, he 
relies more on mixing up move variations than mixing up between high and low 
attacks. But there's a few things you can do. Mixing up between the Rising 
Cobra and Opening Void Thrust is a good idea, and randomly mix up the 
Spinning Roundhouse and the Spinning Roundhouse~Spinning Sweep. The Double 
Low Swipe is a nice move to stick in now and then. Mix up between his Torso 
Slice and his Sword Undercut. Both moves look similar initially, and the 
former will hit mid while the latter will hit low. Mix up the Warrior Step, 
using only the first two hits sometimes and other times performing the full 
move.

8.3.2 Ground Attacks
-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Assassin can certainly take advantage when your opponent is lying on the 
ground. The first two hits of the Warrior step will both hit grounded
opponents. The Overhead Waterfall is probably the most damaging attack that 
can hit grounded opponents, and reaches quite a distance too. Pouncing Claws 
is also a good alternative. Opening Void Thrust is another great vertical 
ground attack, but keep in mind you need to be pretty close to hand a blow. 
The Crushing Heel isn't a bad choice either. Although it may not look like 
it, Forced Flame Divide is very good, deceptive, close range ground attack. 
If you want a horizontal attack, use the Sword Undercut. 

8.3.3 Ring Outs
-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

Assassin doesn't have much in the way of moves that can both ring out 
opponents AND be effective. Most of the moves that can ring out are well 
telegraphed. The Full Warrior Step is capable of doing it, as are the 
Double Sword Arc and the Vengeful Thrust. He has several other moves that 
can do it, but don't rely on winning with ring outs when playing as 
Assassin. He doesn't need it anyway.

8.3.4 Throws
-=-=-=-=-=-=

Assassin's throws are very damaging, so use them whenever you have the 
opportunity. Keep in mind throws can be ducked and broken, so don't overuse
them. Used correctly though, Assassin's throws are a very powerful weapon.

8.4 Weaknesses
**************

To master Assassin, you'll need to know his weaknesses just as well as you
know his strengths.

- None of his moves are particularly fast hitting, and he's not a 
particularly fast mover, meaning you really need to work hard at the 
countering game to beat players like Talim, Taki, Voldo and Maxi.
- Assassin is primarily a close to mid range fighter. He's not good at far 
range and struggles against characters like Astaroth, Berserker, Ivy and 
Nightmare. You'll need to work hard at a full-on attack approach to beat 
these guys.
- He doesn't have a brilliant high/low mix-up game as previously stated. 
It means you really need to work at fooling your opponents with variations 
of other types of moves.
- Many of Assassin's more powerful moves leave him vulnerable to attack if 
avoided or blocked. He only has one unblockable and two guard breaks, 
(excluding Pouncing Claws which becomes a guard break after a level 3 soul 
charge) all of which aren't very useful. You'll need to avoid using them and 
stick to pressuring your opponents to win matches, rather than using brute 
force.
- Don't attempt to win by ring outs with Assassin. He's not a character that
can exploit them very well.
- Assassin relies primarily on a mix-up move variation game. Because of this, 
it's very easy to fall into some predictable attack patterns. To be an 
effective Assassin player, you must be able to fool your opponents. Mix 
up the move variations at random.

That's it...and remember, practice, practice, practice. Have fun, and
hopefully this has been of some use to you!

9.0     Acknowledgements and Credits
------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Namco, for making such an awesome fighting game!
My two brothers who make the multiplayer much more fun, I wouldn't be anywhere 
near as good at the game without them to play against
Myself, for spending all those hours writing this FAQ! (Especially manually 
working out the movelist for Assassin, damn that was painful)

If you have any questions, comments or suggestions about this FAQ, feel free 
to e-mail me.

Make sure you visit Blood-Sports.net - The one-stop source for Fighters!
http://www.blood-sports.net

Copyright 2004 by White_Pointer