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Dragon Ball Z: Shin Budokai
Author- Nnamz25@hotmail.com
Version 1

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Introduction



Piccolo is my favorite character in the anime series, and for the 3rd game in
a row is my favorite character in the game as well. For the last few 
iterations of this game Dimps has been very kind to Piccolo.

Budokai 1
-Piccolo was Mid Tier. He didn't have any cancel chains and no good way to 
combo into anything other then Destructive Wave, but that is pretty much the 
same boat as almost every other character in the game.

Budokai 2
-Piccolo was arguably Top Tier in this game. He was a very unique character, 
being able to play defensive (Nullifying attacks with his <K starter) and 
offensive (Starter off the fast and good reaching >P starter) at will in a 
match, something very few other characters could do. His damage was above 
average also. (Dishing out something like 1900 damage)

Budokai 3
-Piccolo was probably the best character in this game. In an attempt to make 
characters more unique, dimps gave Piccolo the ability to stretch his arms for
some of his attacks. This opened doors to some nasty zoning strategy thanks 
to the reach, speed and recovery time of his stretch chains (namely >P>PPPP). 
To top it off, he was a mediation user and his level 2 death move only used 
half a ki gauge. He was also no slouch in damage, dishing out over 2000 
damage with a death move combo. 

But how does he fair in Shin Budokai?

He murders all his past iterations, that's how.

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Piccolo's Pros


- He is now the most damaging character in the game.

- "S" starter has HUGE reach, unheard of in any other Budokai game. It also 
nullifies attacks and is chargeable like any other S attack.

- His combos are short (time wise). As a matter of fact he could do his best 
combo in the span it takes his opponent to recover 1 ki gauge, which is insane
since it's the most damaging combo in the game.


Piccolo's Cons


Piccolo literally has no shortcomings. In some areas like close range combat 
he is average, however he has nothing that is below average in this game. A 
while ago it was thought a weakness of his was that his Special Beam Cannon 
was useless since it couldn't be comboed into and it was too slow to catch 
anyone. This rumor has been disregarded by recent discoveries. First off, it 
can be comboed into by Aura Burst canceling off of a charged "E" after his 
<S>R chain, so it can be used in matches. Second, even if it wasn't, you can 
transform mid combo and use his Hellzone Grenade off of the transformation, 
which you should be doing all the time anyway.

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Piccolo's Main Strategy



*For those of you who aren't familiar with Piccolo's Budokai 3 play style, 
please skip to the next paragraph, as the first one will make no sense to you*

Piccolo has vastly changed from his last version in Budokai 3. This is mostly
due to new combo starters, and new overall gameplay changes in speed and 
priority. As veteran Budokai 3 players already know, Piccolo's trademark 
technique in that game was zoning. His speed, reach, recovery time and the 
fact that his body remained where it was while he was using his stretchy limbs
, enabled him to do so. By throwing out relentless >P chains, Piccolo was 
almost ensured the first shot at a combo and almost ensured that the next hit
be his since his opponent will still be out of reach of him or too slow to 
beat his next attack. 

But Shin Budokai's version plays a lot differently, even if they have similar 
move sets.

In this game, Piccolo's main combo starter is his "S" smash attack starter. 
Like all smash attacks, this attack is chargeable and nullifies 1 hit when
used. If used against a rush attack, it will get priority. If used against 
another smash attack, depending on the timing and range, one attack will win, 
or they will cancel each other out. But unlike all other smash attack starters
, Piccolo's "S" starter can reach someone who is halfway across the screen! No
other move comes close to reach like that. 

For a demonstration, go into training mode with Piccolo. Once you're in walk 
right up to his opponent. Now take 4 full steps back. (His legs coming
together, then opening again is counted as 1 step) Now use his "S" starter. 
It connects and can be comboed by adding on "SS" faster it, charged or not 
charged.

Piccolo's S starter is also not counted as part of his hitbox. This means that
if your opponent gets cheeky and tries to hit Piccolo's arm while Piccolo is 
using his "S" starter since he can't reach his body, that it won't work. To 
hit Piccolo you need to get inside, not attack his limbs.

And to top it all off, the following two "S" after his initial "S" starter, 
track his opponent. So if your opponent decides to side step, side-dash, or 
Aura Burst side-dash away from the initial "S" starter, Piccolo doesn't have 
to stop and defend himself since the next the next hit will be telegraphed 
at his opponent as soon as it comes out. I've even managed to hit opponents 
who have tried to Aura Burst side-dash to avoid it. Sometimes they will 
manage to avoid it, depending on the timing of "S" thrown out and when they 
used them move.

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Now, all that may make Piccolo seem invincible, but there are some ways crafty
opponents can find a way around it. While there will undoubtedly be more to 
come, I'll list the ones I've encountered.

#1. Opponent uses perfectly timed Aura Burst side-dashes to avoid all 3 hit's 
in the "SSS" combo chain and rushes into your face before you could cancel and
start it again.

Counter: Well if your opponent actually manages to do this then they deserve a
pat on the back, since they not only have to time their moves properly, but 
anticipate your timing of when you'll let go of "S" as well. But if this does
happen don't attempt another "S" chain, since the "S" chain isn't very fast 
and they will get priority with a fast move if they are smart. Instead, go for
the nice, quick "PPPP" chain. If you land it as they are trying to attack you,
you can combo off it since "PPPPS-" is a combo chain. If they anticipated it 
and blocked it, the fourth "P" in the "PPPP "chain will blast them back into 
"S" range, back to square one. Now if your opponent anticipated it and dodged 
the fourth hit as to not get blasted back out of range, take a quick look at 
their ki. They just used a bunch of ki using Aura Burst side-dashes to avoid 
all of your "S" hit's and used even more ki dodging the "PPPP" chain as to 
avoid getting knocked by while blocking. If they still have enough ki to TC, 
they will attack, so defend yourself accordingly. If they don't, which they 
probably won't, they are in no position to attack you since if you TC their 
move they are at your mercy since they can't counter TC it back.


#2. Opponent fires a ki blast at you and catches you as you are charging an 
"S" chain, which counts as a counter hit and sends you into the air. Opponent 
then rushes at you to close the gap before you can get to your feet and is 
ready to attack once you stand.

Counter: This is the best method of countering Piccolo's range games that 
I've gone up against. The first and best thing I could say to avoid this 
situation is to not be predictable and always charge your "S" chains. Try 
just letting some fly out uncharged once in a while to avoid being predicted. 
You might even catch an over zealous opponent trying to blast you even if you
didn't charge it full, which in that case you'll auto deflect the blast and 
nail him with the combo starter.

But if you do get caught by the blast, the best thing you could do is pick a 
wake up maneuver. You have Back+Guard which will cause you to do a back flip 
and send you half way across the screen and safely out of range of their 
combo starters. Or you could use Up or Down+Guard which will make Piccolo 
sprawl off to one side or another as he's getting up, making your opponent 
whiff potential combo starting attempts.

But at this point it's guess work. If your opponent guesses right as you 
perform a back flip, they will dash at you as you are doing it, killing any 
distance you might have gained if they didn't. At this point there isn't much 
you can do besides defend yourself. If they guess right as you perform a side 
sprawl, they will hold guard and follow your sprawl until it stops then attack 
you. There isn't much you can do in this instance either besides defend. So 
the best advice I could offer is to vary your charged and non charged "S" and 
vary your defensive wake up games.

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Piccolo Combos

In terms of his combo platform, Piccolo has lost a lot and gained a lot. He 
can no longer juggle (Well nobody really can anymore anyway), and can no 
longer sidestep behind his opponent after a >PPP>P or a <P.>KP- since he no 
longer has those moves. However, his ground damage has gone up considerably 
thanks to his new combo chain "SSS*" in which you can charge the last 2 hit's 
and it will still combo, only add more damage.

Anyway this section is only for players who are familiar with canceling and 
stuns and how they work from the other Budokai games. 

Legend:

R = Rush attack
S = Slam attack
> = Towards opponent
< = Away from opponent
/\ = Up on the D-pad
E = Energy Button
- = Cancel
* = Stun
' = Fully charge upcoming move
[AB] = Aura Burst
- [AB] = Aura Burst Cancel

(ALL COMBOS ARE DONE ON GOGETA AT MAX KI SINCE HE HAS A BASELINE KI OF 7 WHICH
WILL NEVER RISE OR FALL DURING COMBOS)


***Combos discovered on 3/22/2006 by Nnamz*** 

S'S'S*, <S>R*, >RRRS-, <RRRR>E [Destructive Wave] 17 hit's 1194 damage or >E 
[Light Grenade] 17 hit's 1286 damage

S'S'S*, <S>R*, >RRRS-, RRRR<E [Maou Shot] 24 hit's 1297 damage

S'S'S*, <S>R*, >RRRS-, /\E [Hellzone Grenade] >E [Light Grenade] 23 hit's, 
2582 damage


***Combo discovered on 3/24/2006 by Nnamz and Goryus***

S'S'S*, <S>R*, >RRRS-, RRRRS-, /\E [Hellzone Grenade] >E [Light Grenade]
27 hit's, 2710 damage


***Combo discovered on 5/7/2006 by Nnamz***

S'S'S, >RRRS-, <R>SR^, <R>SR^, /\E [Hellzone Grenade] [AB]>E [Light Grenade]
27 hit's, 2997 damage


***Combo discovered on 5/15/2006 by A Purple Cow***

S'S'S*, >RRRS-, <S.>RR^, <S.>RR^, >>R^, /\E [Hellzone Grenade] [AB]>E 
[Light Grenade] 28 hit's, 3046 damage


***Combo discovered on 5/16/2006 by Nnamz***

S'S'S*, >RRRS-, <S>RR^, <S>RR^, >>R^, \/E [Fuse with Kami], <S>RR^, /\E 
[Hellzone Grenade], [AB]>E [Light Grenade] 31 hit's, 3109 damage


***Combos discovered on 8/31/2006 by Nnamz***

S'S'S*, <S>RE-, [AB]S*, [AB]R*, >RRRS-, RRRRS-, /\E [Hellzone Grenade], [AB]>E
[Light Grenade] 29 hit's, 3061 damage.

S'S'S*, <S>RE-, [AB]S*, [AB]R*, >>R*, >RRRS-, RRRRS-, /\E [Hellzone Grenade],
[AB]>E [Light Grenade] 30 hit's, 3104 damage. (Opponent must be airborne)

S'S'S*, <S>RE-, [AB]S*, [AB]R*, >RRRS-, <R<RE-, RRRRS-, /\E 
[Hellzone Grenade], [AB]>E [Light Grenade] 31 hit's, 3123 damage.

S'S'S*, <S>RE-, [AB]S*, [AB]R*, >>R*, >RRRS-, <R<RE-, RRRRS-, /\E 
[Hellzone Grenade], [AB]>E [Light Grenade] 32 hit's, 3161 damage.



Special Thanks

CJAYC - For creating the n00b infested boards in which the depth of this 
series was created.
Purple Cow - For the Piccolo combo
Drunken Pilot, Zejitox, philff138, cml64, Brogeta, Goryus, Sjsman, vegeta1 
and the rest of the users on the Shin Budokai board who give a damn about the
games depth.

Copyright 2006 Nnamdi Wosu