Street Fighter Alpha 3 ---Zangief FAQ v0.2--- Benjamin Chen (email@example.com) 10-22-98 ********************************************************* This FAQ is for personal use only. It may not be changed in any way shape or form. It can be used and distributed freely, but please give credit where credit is due. ********************************************************* Version 0.1 - First attempt at an FAQ. Version 0.2 - Fixed typos and grammatical errors. Added info on st. jab, and versus strategies. 1. General Overview I'm assuming if you’re reading a Zangief faq, you should be familiar with the Street Fighter basic game mechanics. If you’re not familiar with them, I suggest you learn the basic gameplay mechanics with a less advanced character. Try the shotokans first and when you get the basic gameplay down, then comeback to this faq. (I can't believe I'm pushing players towards the shotos. =P) Well anyways, Zangief is a great character to use. He has amazing comeback power, and has a huge advantage against people that have never played a competent Zangief before. So let’s get on with it. 2. Legend These are the following terms I use. d = down u = up df = down forward. As in crouching but stick is towards the opponent. db = down back uf = up forward ub = up back jab = light punch strong = medium punch fierce = heavy punch short = light kick forward = medium kick roundhouse = heavy kick. Sometimes these are abbreviated. cr. <button> = crouching and the button st. <button> = standing while pressing that button. 3. Basic Attacks Standing attacks: Jab : A quick overhead chop. Very effective anti-air if you nothing else is working for you. Especially deadly if you have a super charged up. You can just do a st. jab, and then the level 3 aerial russian slam to catch em and take off a fat chunk. Credit to CDDude228 and EvilMadCow for yelling at me for underrating this move. Of course I went out and tried it and it works very, very well. Strong : A high horizontal chop. A decent move to juggle if you have nothing else. If someone jumps at you and you cr. strong them as anti-air, you can st. strong them if they flip out in the corner. Of course you can do other things to juggle them too. I haven't really incorporated this move into my game too much. If anyone has any suggestions to its use, feel free to mail me. Fierce : A high horizontal straight out power punch! Slow, but effective. I use it to tack on an extra hit if my opponent decides to PP flip out without sticking something out. Pretty useful. It also works as anti-air if you anticipate their jump and they're jumping from afar. Takes off a fat chunk of damage. Short : A little kick where Zangief sticks out his foot. Pretty useful in hitting ground attacks. Stick these out randomly sometimes if your opponent is walking back and forth playing annoying ground game. Forward : A straight out waist high kick. A very, very, very useful kick. I cannot emphasize how much I love this thing. It is quick. It is excellent for ground game. If someone sticks something out or tries to jump with this thing in their face they'll get stuffed. Stick these out randomly too. Roundhouse : An arcing double kick. Think of this as a breakdancing kick. It can hit twice. I use this as anti-air sometimes. This does have one use that I really, really love. I use this move alot in my corner spd trap guessing games. More on this in the how to land your spd section :). Crouching Attacks: Jab : A quick mid-level stab. I love this thing. It is quick and has good priority. Repeated cr. jabs combo also. Very good if you think your opponent is going to cheap you. Good at pressuring in the corner and confusing. Decent in setting up guard crush opportunities also. Strong : A punch arcing upwards. I use this move a lot for anti-air if they jump from afar. The problem is some attacks such as, shotos air tatsumaki’s, Blanka's jump in roundhouse, seem to beat this. Blanka just beats you, while the air tatsumaki's sometimes pass over it. After some experience you’ll be able to tell when to use it though. Fierce : A straight punch at mid-level. This move has very long reach. It does good guard crush damage, and good damage. It can stuff shoto fireballs if timed well. It does leave you a bit open though. Watch out for shoryukens and shinku hadokens which will trade hits. It has more range then shoto cr. roundhouses so its useful if they are playing close range fireball, cr. roundhouse, top-down games. Short : A ground kick where ‘gief slides his foot across. Doesn't have good reach, but works well in SPD ticks (More on that later). It's quick and thats about it. Forward : Looks just like the cr. short. This has a bit more reach and is slower in coming out. Does more damage too. I don’t really use this much. Except as a mix up sometimes in spd traps in the corner. Again more on that later. Roundhouse : Looks like the short and forward. Again, more reach, more damage. It knocks down too. Use this in ground game. Knock em down and then go for a crossup etc. Typical cr. rndhse use. Jumping Attacks: Jab : I'm combining both jump up and jump forward attacks in one section. Both jump jabs look the same. They are quick punch stabs with decent priority. The damage doesn’t make them worth it though. Use it when nothing else is working for you. The strong will usually have high enough priority though. Strong : Both strongs look the same also. Use this when all your other attacks are beaten in an air to air situation. This has good priority and does better damage then the jab. Fierce : The jump straight up one is a punch with a trajectory going downwards. The jump towards is a straight out punch that has amazingly good reach. I use this to hit fireball chuckers from afar. This has very good air to ground priority. Short : Both versions look the same. Its a straight out kick. Think of an upside-down L. Decent air to air but damage doesn’t make it worth it. Forward : Looks like the short. Again its decent and damage isn't that bad. There are just so many more better things to use though. Roundhouse : A full body kick. Think of a spear with Zangief's feet as the point. Very good air to air kick with good priority. Doesn't have as much hitting surface area though. Special Basic Attacks: Here's where Zangief really shows his stuff. Body Splash : An aerial splash. Do this by jumping back or forwards and pressing d + fierce. I love this attack. This has amazing air to ground priority and has insane hit surface area. Beats a lot of characters' cr. fierce air counters. Use this often!!! Double Knee Press : Another insanely useful move. Do this by jumping back or forwards and pressing down and either short or forward. I use the forward version a lot. This has insane priority. I press the button at the start of the jump. This move'll beat Dhalsim’s limbs and this is important cuz this is one of the only ways you can get in on Dhalsim. Use this to beat Sodom's anti-air scrapes too. It'll at least trade if timed correctly. Headbutt : Jump straight up and press up + fierce. This move dizzies if you hit them twice in a short amount of time. Yes, twice!!!! Amazing. Use this as an anti jump in air to air counter. Again this has insane priority and does amazing damage. Trading hits with it is the best cuz sometimes the other guy won't know what you used. Then they'll jump again and you can just use the headbutt again. Then watch their face as their character is dizzied. Russian Kick : df + forward. A very good long range kick with good recovery time. I use this to poke from far away cuz it can snuff fireballs well. Learn to incorporate it in your ground game mixups. 4. Sure Killing Techniques Here is where the fun begins!!! This is where Zangief's power arsenal begins. Here is the ammunition to strike fear into your opponents hearts (unless hes using dhalsim, then you pray!). Spinning Pile Driver : 360 + any punch THIS IS YOUR BREAD AND BUTTER MOVE!!! This is what distinguishes Zangief from the rest of the crowd. The actual motion isn’t really a 360 degree movement. The way I do it is f, df, d, db, b, ub, u + punch. So its really only a 270. Learn this from both directions. I will discuss how to use this move in the strategy section. Running Bear Grab : 360 + any kick A good move to use. From far away, Zangief runs towards his opponent and then grabs him. Always use the roundhouse version if you are gonna use this move from far. The short close one has some spd setup uses too. From up close he does a double body slam. Again I’ll explain it’s uses in the strategy section. Banishing Flat: f, d, df, f + any punch Zangief does a glowing backhand. This move is useful also. Again I'll discuss it in the strategy section for landing spds and fabs ( spinning pile drivers and final atomic busters). But use it to kill projectiles and to work your way in against fireballers. This move has more priority then you think. It works very well against Sagat. Lariat: 3 punch or 3 kick This move is great for anti-air if the opponent jumps at you as you're getting up. It also is invulnerable to fireballs. The kick version is quick and doesn't leave you open to sweeps. The punch version is more forgiving on the passing through fireball timing since it lasts longer. Certain well placed air attacks will beat this however. Be careful of using this if you're in a tight situation. 5. Supers Zangief only has 2 supers but both are useful and deadly. Learn how to use them both and when to use them both! Final Atomic Buster : 720 + any punch Not a true 720 motion. I usually do my normal pseudo 360 motion and add in a full 360 and then press punch. Since this move incorporates the up position without the pressing of a button, you can only do this super off a jump in, buffer it in while you're in block stun, hit stun, or in a moves mid animation. Basically anything that prevents you from jumping (yes even including the taunt!!!). This move beats a lotta things. Pretty much all basic attacks, some non-invincible sure-killings, and a small amount of supers. Plus it has amazing range. I’ll go into the details of landing this super and how to use it in your game in the strategy section. Aerial Russian Slam : d, df, f, d, df, f + any kick. Zangief flies in the air and snatches him outta the air and proceeds to slam him to the ground. This super is hard to land because it won't work in certain situations. Sometimes it just magically passes through ur opponent. As mentioned before you can do the level 3 version of this super after you hit them with an anti-air st. jab. 6. Strategies Zangief's strategy is very simple. Do more damage to your opponent then he does to you. At every opportunity, you want to land your most powerful option. First thing you gotta do is feel your opponent out. See what kind of style they use to fight your Zangief. Usually, there are 3 different styles that I see when people fight my Zangief. Those are run scared, offensive, and defensive counters. The run scared is what most of the inexperienced players do after you land that first spd. The offensive style is what a lot of non-shoto players use (occasionally you'll come upon an offensive shoto), and the defensive counter style is what a lot of the experienced players use. A. How to land your Spd. The first method to learn would be how to use your spd offensively, which is basically to jump in. On the jump-in, you got three options: 1. Jump in and do nothing and spd. 2. Jump in with an attack and then spd. 3. Jump in with an attack, do a ground attack and then spd. Basically, the only way to escape this is to either counter the jump-in, do a well timed attack right before the spd comes out, or to jump away. You can obviously see the problems that they would have. If you get them with a surprise jump in, and they don't try to counter, they can either expect and block, or expect a jump in spd and jump away. If they block and you jump in and spd they get caught. If they jump away and you attacked with something like a normal jump fierce which has insane range, they get hit. If they do guess correctly and you go for something like a splash, and they block you have another option. If your splash was deep enough, they don't know whether to block or jump. If they block you might spd. If they jump they won’t be blocking and they'll get nailed by an attack. So heres your basic options. Your best jump in is either your forward knee press or your splash. Use the splash to cross-up. Use this jump in to counter non-shoto air counters. Then just spd or cr. short or cr. jab and spd. Then mix it up everyone once in a while with just a plain ol' jump in spd. Now the way to land your spd defensively is the most fun. When you rip an opponent out of their move with and spd and look at the expression you can't help, but laugh. Against inexperienced players that don't know to come in with deep jump in attacks just block their high attack and then instantly spd. Grab them off a non-deep cross up. Grab em after blocked tatsumaki's. My favorite is to grab Ken after blocking his shinryuken. Thats pretty much what you need to know for the spds. Try using moves that move you forward and if they block don’t leave you open. Try banishing flatting them as they get up but have the flat be too early to hit and then grab em. B. How to land the FAB This is what you use for your comeback power. The level 3 FAB takes off a fat chunk of energy. Never ever use the level 2 unless you're desperate for the win. Use the level 1 for the extra priority. Use the level 3 to punish and end the game. Well... the best way to land it for a guaranteed grab is to use the fab defensively. If you’re quick enough, do the fab off a non deep jum in. Do it off a blocked tatsumaki. And it is really really easy to do it off a blocked shinryuken :). But if you are going to use it offensively the best way is to fool em. Do a couple of jump splash, cr. shorts and then jump again. Then when you think they think you’ll jump again, do a splash, cr. short, fab. You can try a double knee and then straight into an fab. Try a missed banishing flat into FAB. Do anything you can that will guarantee that you land this super. Taunt and then do this if you have too!!!! C. Zangief mix up games. You got em trapped in the corner. Now what do you do? Try a splash, cr. sort, splash, cr. short, jump in with nothing then spd. That pattern works well on people. If the people are wise to your fab/spd attempts and start jumping up or away, do a splash, cr. short, pause and wait for them to be near the height of their jump and grab em with a level 3 aerial russian slam. If they are in the corner and you don't have a super use a st. roundhouse. The cr. strong doesn't work too well for this. Just mix it up as best you can and try to destroy them. D. General Strategies Feel out your opponent. From my experience, if they like to play defensively, your whole game should be based on surprise jump-ins. Use the ground game technique. Then when you think they will try and retaliate with something like a cr. roundhouse or something jump in and destroy em. That works best on defensive players. On shotos just anticipate a fireball and jump from close to 3/4 of the screen away with a jump fierce. Or if you’re closer then that jump in spd/fab. Cr. fierce works very well on shoto scrubs. Lariat through fireballs. Except for Sagat's where you have to banishing flat them, or do a anticipated jump-in. Against offensive players, that like to jump, get them to play air to air game with you. The only way alot of characters can beat your air to air game is to jump with an early attack. Fool them into doing this and then spd them. Use cr. strong and st. roundhouse off a lured jump-in. If they knock you down, and go for a crossup do a lariat as a get up. If their guard meter is in danger, I like to do splash, 2 cr. jabs, then splash, cr. short, spd. Or instead just jump again and just spd. Remember your air headbutt dizzies in 2 hits if done in succession. Use this to your advantage. Get offensive players to be afraid to jump in. And then go for your standard spd/fab guessing games. This should be enough for you guys to get a good solid start with Zangief. 7. The different isms. I haven't played any of the ism’s besides x, a, and v. So I don't know how well the secret isms work with Zangief. But here are some tips when using the other isms. When using X: Try not to jump as much. The banishing flat motion is changed to f, df, d. He has an excellent air counter. Just press f + fierce. Its an on the ground headbutt. It also works very well as a tick into an fab or spd. His normal moves do insane damage. Land a simple cr. fierce and laugh at the damage you do on them. This faq is centered around my favorite ism which is a-ism so there isn't much I haven't already mentioned.. Finally, V-ism. Out of these 3 isms v-ism is the best to beat dhalsim. Blow through an attack when you get a chance. The only v-combo I know is in the corner, jump and activate v with the 2 middle buttons, then do a splash, 2 cr. shorts, into a fierce banishing flat, splash, 2 cr shorts, flat, etc and continue. It works only decently. Supposedly no-ism is very good against dhalsim, since you can turtle all you want and not get guard crushed. So try and learn many different styles with Zangief. 8. Versus Strategies Okay, as per request, here is the start of the versus strategies. I in no way claim to be any type of masterlevel Zangief. This just comes from personal playing experience. I seem to be pretty successful locally with my gief. I am always open to criticisms and suggestions, improvements, etc... So I'll just start off with a few matchups I'm familiar and what little I know about what was requested. 1. Ryu Ryu is a matchup you are bound to see many times. So I started off with this one. I can pretty much use any ism I want. I generally use only two though. As always watch how he plays. If he likes to jump in or walk towards you a lot it should make your life a whole lot easier. Poke him with the forward russian kicks to snuff fbs. Watch out for dp's though. Try and get surprise jump-ins. If you anticipate a fireball, jump in and spd/fab. If you're out of range try a j. fierce, cr. rndhouse. After the cr. rndhouse either go for a crossup splash or walk towards him and block and then counter what he throws out. Generally not a tough fight unless you get into a rut. You can usually take off more damage then he does, so just use your power to your advantage. 2. Akuma Play him like Ryu. Definitely watch out for his hell murder though. If he knocks you down, roll at all costs if he has a level 3 and likes to do the Instant Hell Murder. Its a free 50% for him if you don't roll. Other then that, cr. strong his air fireballs and play your normal style. Akuma shouldn't be that tough considering he takes enormous damage. 3. Ken This fight can be one of the more annoying ones. With Ken's excellent ground game, he can force you to jump too much. If you're playing a-ism, a good Ken will constantly poke you with st. rndhse's and f + rndhse. Both do very good guard crush damage. If you use no-ism you don’t have to worry about guard crush. You should always watch how you flip out, but when Ken has you in the air in the corner, be extremely careful how you flip out. You don't wanna eat a super on your way down. Not too tough though, just your typical shoto fight if you can beat his pokes. 4. Dhalsim This is an extremely tough fight to win. I always use no-ism Zangief against Dhalsim. This is one of your toughest fights. I always start off the round by jumping backwards. Just sit there in cr. block. Block any and all limbs that come your way. If he walks towards you, which generally doesn’t happen, wait till he gets close. Do quick double lariats to beat what he does. If he short slides, block and spd/fab quick if you can. Watch out for short slides into fbs. If he mummys or drill kicks you, either block and spd, or do the 3k lariat. If he pokes you with limbs block the limbs. If he fbs from far, jump in with the double knee which beats whatever he sticks out, and then either do a quick double lariat, or pause and wait. Then start all over again. Still and extremely tough fight though. Just get as much experience as you can, and you'll slowly refine your anti-sim technique. Good Luck with this one :). Mail me with results, success stories, beat downs and anything else good. 5. Gen Gen can be tough to beat depending on the other players style of play. Generally if the Gen plays in the 3 punch style it can be a little easier. The 3 punch style has to use the reverse waterfall as his anti-air. Pressure 3P style Gen, with the usual stuff. If he knocks you down and goes for a crossup do a quick double lariat. If you knock him down, always go for the crossup. Gen has a tough time defending and punishing against crossups. 3K style Gen should be played a little more defensively. Block snake drills and spd/fab. If he jumps on your head or off the wall just block and spd. You can counter his jump-ins with cr. strong or lariats or st. jabs. His jump in 3K is slow so you have plenty of time. Just be careful of that crossup. Make sure you can block it well. If you’re playing against an expert Gen, never ever let him cross you up if possible. Any crossup in any style will either lead to ground chain super, and then a juggle of his choice, or st. jab, cr. short, level 3 snake bite. This is Gen’s come back power. His ability to knock off 50-60% of your energy off a single crossup or cr. jab. Just be careful. It might be smart to play no-ism since Gen has no super that does multiple hits if blocked except for the death touch. Therefore you can block without fear of guard crush. 6. Sodom This fight isn't as bad as it used to be since you can duck under his strong scrapes now. Still be careful since his 360 beats your spd and fab. Sodom’s 720 is quite annoying also. Be very, very offensive against Sodom. Your splash up close beats all so air attacks. From far his j. rndhse beats you though. Try early j. strongs, j. jabs, or j. short to beat his j. rndhse. If you can predict his scrapes beat them with a jump in forward knee press. Overall just try and stay on top of him. If he starts jumping up and down and hitting rndhse and if you’re using x-ism just walk forward and do the ground headbutt (f + fierce). This works well as a mini anti-air. 7. Vega I haven't had too much experience with this fight so if anyone has any strategies or wants to correct any mistakes I made please, please e-mail me. You'll get your credit too :). I’ve only played like 2 Vegas, and both weren't good. All I did was try and stay on top of him. J. fierce seemed to work well. Ground headbutts in x-ism worked well too. Mail me with strategies if you know this fight well. 8. Chun Li X-ism or no-ism work well for me here. No need to have any finesse in this fight at all. Watch out for her throw. And splash from afar. Your splash trades with her cr. rndhse, so you wanna do as much damage in that trade as possible. You can fab her out of the startup of her spinning bird kick. Other then that watch out for her j. fierce cuz its hard to anti-air it. Tough fight, but with a high damage character like x or no-ism gief you can muscle your way out. Well, that's it for this revision. In the next one, I'll have more specific stuff for the different isms, more versus, and hopefully a little more experience under my belt with gief too. I do have something new to add before I go though. A crossup splash, cr. jab, st. short, fierce banishing flat, leaves you a perfect opportunity for a fab or spd. If they are in the corner a jump in splash, cr. jab, st. short, fierce flat lets you pull out a jab spd, too. Again if you have anything to add please mail me. ----------------------------------------Thanks to--------------------------- My parents for just being them. My brother for being my sparring partner. Rob Monti for being a cool manager and annoying Sodom player. Keith and Joey for being crazy funny guys. All my close, close friends for being just that. You know who you guys are ( even though I doubt you guys'll be reading this, poke poke Dorothy). Thanks to Danny Lopez for showing me that there are other good players on Long Island. And to Kevin Wong, and though you prolly don't remember me Tony "Chun" Lim, for being in my opinion the 2 best SF players on Long Island. Friggin like 30 game win streaks. Finally, (I've saved the best for last) to Vivian. For being there for and with me the past few years. We've had our arguments and everything. I still love you Viv. Oops, I forgot someone. Thank you for reading my crappy FAQ. Please forgive it's quality. This is my very very first one. You made it to the end!!! Oops!! I forgot to give an insane amount of credit to the SFA2 Versus Strategy Guide. If you don't have this book, get it. It is by far, the best strategy guide on the planet. ------------------------------------------------------------------------ If you have any suggestions or comments or just wanna yell at me for a crappy FAQ you, can e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Any additions and corrections are welcome. This document Copyright 1998 Ben Chen.