SFZ3 Rose Player's Guide Revison 1 (c) Mondu Quiambao, January, 2000 Contents In the Beginning Preface, Rose Overview General Game Info Control Layout The SFZ3 System -ISMs and Modes Rose Basic Play The Various Moves (Regular, Special, etc.) General Strategies Rose Vs. Tactics The Various Characters (Adon, Akuma, etc.) Other Rose Stuff Storyline, Colors, Win Poses, etc. Miscellany =================== In the Beginning... =================== *** Preface *** This is part of a series I'm making for SFZ3. It contains pretty much everything I can come up for Rose, from basic stuff to more advanced tactics. Those of you with working knowledge of SFZ3 should skip right to the middle of this document, where tactics are discussed. To those of you who are just browsing through and deciding on which character to use in SFZ3, try other documents, such as those of Kao Megura, who has much better coverage of all the characters of SFZ3 in general. To those of you who are interested in what Rose-specific quirks SFZ3 may have or are beginners that think Rose is totally bitchin', start at the beginning. Copyright notices, glossary, and personal info on me are at the end of this document. *** Rose Overview *** First off, Rose is not the most powerful character in SFZ3. I'd place her somewhere in the middle. She's fairly fast, and the range and priority of her moves are pretty good. Unfortunately for Rose, she isn't "hard- hitting". The damage she inflicts (other than her Super Combos) isn't that great. Also, while she has a fireball, it's rather harder to use than Ryu/Ken/Akuma's. Finally, despite her several moves that are anti-air, there are a lot of aerial attacks she simply can't deal with consistently. Think of Rose as the "jack-of-all-trades" in SFZ3... she can (almost) do everything any other character can do, but doesn't exel in any them. To date, Rose has yet to make her presence known in the tournament scene (where even low-ranked characters like Sodom have made an appearance). With this document I hope to convince players that Rose is indeed worth learning to play. ================= General Game Info ================= *** The Control Layout *** Controller (joystick) layout for the arcades: This joysticl position diagram assumes Rose is facing right. Up-back Up Up-forward O O O Back O neutral O Forward O O O Down-back Down Down-forward From the neutral, pushing the joystick back or forward causes Rose to walk in that direction. Pushing the joystick in any down position makes her crouch, while pushing it up causes her to jump up-back, straight up, or up-forward. Button layout (buttons are located to the right of the joystick) JP SP FP <- Jab Punch, Strong Punch, Fierce Punch SK FK RK <- Short Kick, Forward Kick, Roundhouse Kick The start button can be located anywhere, depending upon the cabinet. Since the button layout in the PSX can be customized, I won't bother putting it here. *** The SFZ3 System *** Timer - The number in the top-middle of the screen. Once the timer ends, the round ends. Whoopee. But, seriously, keeping an eye on the timer is extremely important, especially if its running faster than usual and if your opponent is a "turtler" Life Bar - Those two big bars in the upper screen, to the sides of the Timer. Obviously, you lose if it becomes depleted, or if Rose life bar is lesser than your opponent's when time runs out (duh). The bar starts out a solid green (with a red background). As you get hit it shades down to yellow. Block - Hold the joystick back prior to being hit by an attack aimed at the head, chest, or waist. Hold the joystick down-back to defend against attacks that hit low. - When Rose blocks, Regular Moves, Command Moves and Taunts do no damage. Special Moves and Super Combos do reduced damage, but some Special Moves and Super Combos cannot be blocked. Throws cannot be blocked. - Blocks can be done in the air or on the ground under Z/V-ism. In X-ism, air-blocking is not available. Note that not all moves may be air-blocked. All air-to-air moves can be air-blocked. If a character's feet near the ground, any attack he performs cannot be air-blocked. For example, the Dragon Punch can be air-blocked shortly after Ryu/Ken's feet leave the ground, but not when the Dragon Punch is just beginning. All projectile Special Moves (fireballs, Sonic Boom, etc.) can be air-blocked. Almost all Super Combos cannot be air-blocked. - Blocking takes a chunk out of the Guard Meter. Generally, the stronger the attack blocked, the bigger the chunk. Guard Meter; also known as "Guard Power", or GP in the PSX - The bar right underneath the Life bar. If Rose blocks any move, the Guard Meter is reduced. The Guard Meter replenishes itself over time. - If the Guard Meter is completely depleted, then Rose becomes "Guard Crashed". Rose screams and holds a pose. During this short period she becomes unable to move. After this period, the Guard Meter replenishes itself in full, but the total capacity is permanently decreased. The total capacity Guard Meter can never be fully depleted. At least one bar will always be left, no matter how many times a character is Guard Crashed. - Classic -ism has no Guard Meter, and therefore cannot be Guard Crashed. Guard Meter Protection - Do the block just _immediately before_ being hit. If you're successful, Rose will flash blue. The chunk that would have been taken from Rose' Guard Meter is reduced. Damage Reduction - When hit by an opponent, by any move or a hold, move the joystick in any direction and press a button. If you're successful, Rose will flash red. The damage Rose would have taken is reduced. - This is extremely hard to do. The best time to use damage reduction is when being hit by a multi-hit move, such as during most Super Combos. Waggle the stick and mash the buttons while being hit. - This move is not available in X-ism. Air Recovery - Press any two punch buttons after being hit in the air before Rose touches the ground. She'll flip upright. Holding the joystick back causes her to flip further back. Holding it forward causes her to flip nearer the opponent. - Not all attacks can be air-recovered from. Generally, moves that launch Rose high in the air can be air-recovered from, but not always. - Once Rose flips, she can air-block (in Z/V-ism) or attack with any usual aerial attack, but with the priority increased tremendously. - Air recovery is not available in Classic-ism. Ground Recovery Roll, Forward - Press any two kick buttons when Rose has been knocked down or did an air-block. Once she hits the ground, she'll roll a bit forward then get up on her feet. Holding the stick forward as she rolls makes her roll farther than usual. - Like the air recovery, not all moves can be ground-rolled from. - Rose can still be hit while rolling. - This move is not available in X-ism. Ground Recovery Roll, Backward - Press any two punch buttons the moment Rose lands flat on her back. She'll roll a bit backward then get up on her feet. - There are very few instance that can be rolled backward from (I haven't found the exact ones) - Rose can still be hit while rolling. - This move is not available in X-ism. Dizzy and Dizzy recovery - To dizzy an opponent, repeatedly hit him with attacks. Generally, the more damage inflicted, the greater the chance to do a dizzy. A dizzied character is seen with stars around his head and is unable to respond to controls for a couple of seconds. - If you find Rose dizzied, waggle the joystick and mash buttons to wake her up. Regular Moves/Attacks - Press any of the six buttons to do a Regular Move. Generally, the top row is for punches, while the bottom row is for kicks. The left most column represents fast but weak attacks, and the right most column represents powerful but slow attacks. Regular Moves do no damage when blocked. Command Moves/Attacks - Command Moves are moves that require a certain controller position in addition to a button press. Like Regular Moves, Command Moves do no damage when blocked. Special Moves/Attacks - Special Moves are moves that often require specific joystick motions in addition to button press. These moves inflict damage even when blocked, and some cannot be blocked at all. Super Combo Meter - The bar in the bottom of the screen. This bar is filled up by attacking, by being hit, and by hitting an opponent. - In X-ism, this is a red bar. The Super Combo Meter is used for executing Super Combos (duh!), which completely depletes it. - In Z-ism, the bar is green and divided into 3 "levels". The Super Combo Meter, aside from being used for Super Combos, is also used for Zero Counters. Super Combos will consume 1 - 3 levels of the meter, while Zero Counters consume 1. The amount of Super Combo Meter consumed can usually be controlled by pressing the appropriate button. - In V-ism, the bar is blue and is recorded as a percentage. It's used for "Variable Combos" and is slowly depleted once the V.C. is started. Zero Counters consume 50% of the bar. - Classic-ism has no Super Combo Meter Super Combos - Super Combos are extremely powerful moves that require complex joystick motions and keypress in addition to at least 1 charge of the Super Combo Meter. Super Combos inflict damage even when blocked, and some cannot be blocked at all. - Super Combos are available on X/Z-ism only Variable Combo; called "Oricom" in the PSX - Press the same strength punch and kick buttons (ie. fierce punch + roundhouse kick). If you're successful, Rose will flash and be trailed by purple shadows. The final "shadow" will perform any move that Rose does, effectively doubling most moves. Using fierce punch + roundhouse kick to start the Variable Combo causes the shadow to follow approximately 1.5 seconds after Rose. Using the strong punch + forward kick causes the shadow to follow around 3/4ths of a second after Rose, while the jab punch + short kick causes the shadow to follow immediately after Rose. - During the Variable combo, Rose's attacks are speeded up considerably. Her Regular Moves become "cancellable" and "links", and the recovery time from her Special Moves is shortened. - During the brief period that Rose flashes as she starts the Variable Combo she is completely invulnerable to all attacks. - The Variable Combo require that the Super Combo Meter be at least 50% full. - Characters cannot block while Variable Combo is activated. - The Variable Combo ends when the Super Combo Meter becomes depleted or if the character is hit by any attack. If Rose is hit by any attack during the Variable Combo or if the round ends then her Super Combo Meter is decreased by 50%. - Variable Combo is available in V-ism only (duh !) Damage Increase - The damage of certain moves can be increased by waggling the stick and mashing buttons as you attack. The effect of this can be most seen with holds (such as Rose's Soul Drain). If you're succesful, Rose will flash white as you mash the buttons. Zero Counter - Upon blocking an attack on the ground, push the joystick forward and press the same strength punch and kick buttons (ie. fierce punch + roundhouse kick). - This move is not available in X-ism/Classic. Combo - Not to be confused with "Super Combos". A combo is a series of attacks where if one of the attacks hit the rest will probably hit too. If you're successful, the number of hits in the combo will appear right beneath Rose's picture. Links - Links are a type of combo. A link is performed when two or more Regular Moves hit in succession. Links require special timing, and few Regular Moves will actually link together. Cancellable attacks/Two-in-ones - Two-in-ones are a type of combo. All moves have recovery time. For example, when Rose does a crouching kick, you have to wait until she finishes before you can make another move. Certain moves, however, can be "cancelled". The recovery times of these moves may be cut short. To do this, do a Regular Move. Immediately after the Regular Move connects, do a Special Move or a Super Combo. Instead of recovering from the Regular Move, Rose will do the Special Move/Super Combo. Note that not all Regular Moves can be cancelled in this manner. Counter Hit - If you hit your opponent while he's attacking, he will take more damage than usual. If you're successful, the game pauses and there is a "smashing" sound. The message "Counter" appears. - There are two types of Counter Hit -- major and minor. The major one is the one described above. A minor counter hit presents with a less game pause and less smashing sound. Counter-Counter Hit - If an opponent hits Rose while she's attacking, usually the attack will end. You can force Rose to continue with the move by moving the joystick in any direction and pressing a button (as if you're trying a Damage Reduction). If you're successfull, Rose will flash red and your attack will still continue. Some particularly powerful moves will do this automatically. Reversals, BlockStuns, HitStuns - Normally, if Rose blocks an attack she will be unable to move for a brief moment. Some authors call this brief moment "BlockStun". This is also true with being hit -- if she's hit by an attack she will be unable to move for a brief moment. This is called "HitStun". The blockstun and the hitstun are the very reason combos exist -- if Rose blocks or gets hit by an attack, she can't move so the next attack can't be avoided. In real life, blockstun and hitstun are equivalents to flinching after being hit. - If you opponent is hit as a counter hit (see "Counter Hit, above), the hitstun of your move is increased dramatically. - However, during the blockstun and the hitstun, there exists a very, very, very tiny window of opportunity. With a lot of skill and luck, you may be able to use this extremely brief period to launch an attack of your own, hopefully hitting your opponent before his next attack hits Rose. If you're successful, the message "Reversal" appears. Reversal Only Moves - Some characters have moves that can only be performed during a Blockstun, a Hitstun, or while getting up after being knocked to the floor. These are "Reversal Only Moves". As Rose has no Reversal Only Moves, I won't being going into detail on this. Combo Escape - Some multi-hit moves (such as Ken's Shoryureppa and Rose' level 3 Aura Soul Throw) can be escaped from (meaning that the rest of the move will no longer hit). To do this, waggle the joystick and mash the buttons as she is being hit (as if you're trying to do damage reduction). - Combo escape is not available in Classic-ism. Wake-up Move - If Rose is knocked flat on her back (and did not do a ground recovery roll) she is granted a very brief period of invulnerability as she's getting to her feet. During this period of invulnerabiliy, she can try to do a Special Move or a Super Combo. If done successfully, the message "Reversal" appears. Throw/Hold - While very near the opponent, hold the joystick forward or back, then press any two punch buttons or any two kick buttons. - If Rose is too far away to throw, trying to do so will leave her vulnerable for a small period of time (Rose makes a weird gesture and grunts). Tech. Hit; also known as "throw escape" - Do a throw as soon as the opponent does a throw. If you're successful, the message "Tech. Hit" appears. The damage Rose would have taken is reduced, depending upon how fast you do the Tech. Hit. - Not available in Classic-ism. Taunts - Press the start button (select button on the PSX) and Rose will do a taunt. - During a taunt, Rose will not respond to any other command, leaving her wide open to attack. - Some Taunts deal damage. - The recovery period of certain moves can be cut short by the taunt, the effect of which is similar to a two-in-one. - You can taunt once per round in Z/V-ism, or an as many times as you want during a VC. *** ISMS *** Presented below are the general characteristics for the various -isms. X-ism/"Simple" - Guard Meter around around 5 1/2 blocks long - Most of Rose's attacks cause up to 10% more damage than in Z-ism - Rose takes up to 10% more damage from attacks than in Z-ism - no air block, no ground recovery roll, no Zero Counter - no taunt - one Super Combo (identical to Z-ism's level 3 Aura Soul Throw) Z-ism/"Standard" - Guard Meter around 4 1/2 blocks long - Zero Counter requires 1 level of the Super Combo Meter - taunt, once per round - three Super Combos available (Aura Soul Spark, Aura Soul Throw, Soul illusion) that consumes 1 to 3 levels of the Super Combo Meter V-ism/"Variation"/"Original" - Guard Meter around 4 1/2 blocks long - Rose's attacks cause up to 10% less damage than in Z-ism - Zero Counter requires 50% of the Super Combo Meter - taunt, once per round; while in VC, Rose may taunt repeatedly - no Super Combo - Variable Combo available Classic/"No-ism" - 0/infinite Guard Meter (therefore cannot be guard crashed) - damage inflicted and taken same as X-ism - no air block, no ground recovery roll, no air recovery, no taunt, no tech. hit, no damage reduction - Rose is difficult to juggle; being hit in the air usually causes her to fall to the ground - no Super Combo Meter (and therefore no Super Combos, no Variable Combos, no Zero counter) - In the arcades, the Classic -ism cannot be accessed from the screen. Instead, do the following: a) insert your coin/token b) press and hold fierce punch and roundhouse kick buttons at the same time c) press the start button d) move the joystick to the character of your choice (Rose in this case) e) press any button other than start f) you can now release the fierce punch and roundhouse kick buttons In the PSX, Classic -ism can be accessed from the screen (provided you've unlocked it, of course -- this document will not discuss how to unlock PSX features). *** Modes *** In addition to the X/V/Z-ism, two additional modes can be added to your character. Low-guard mode/"Saikyou" - the Guard Meter is extremely short (two blocks) - you get dizzied 2x - 4x times faster than normal - there are no "cancellable" attacks, making combos extremely difficult to do - In the arcades, Low-guard mode cannot be accessed from the screen. Instead, do the same thing as you would do to access Classic -ism (see above), except you must press and hold the jab punch and short kick buttons instead of the fierce punch and roundhouse kick Serious mode/"Mazi" - increased inflicted and taken damage, around 2x more than usual - if you lose even 1 round, you've lost the entire match - In the arcades, Serious mode cannot be accessed from the screen. Instead, do the same thing as you would do to access Classic -ism (see above), except you must press and hold the strong punch and forward kick buttons instead of the fierce punch and roundhouse kick. Also, while it's possible to win using this mode against a human player, computer-controlled opponents inflicts _much_ more damage than usual (up to 4x more). =============== Rose Basic Play =============== *** Regular Moves *** In the list below are moves that are marked with "<near>". To do these moves in V-ism the joystick must be pushed backward while the appropriate button is pressed. To do these moves in X/Z-ism the opponent must be near Rose. Other moves are marked "<far>". To do these moves in V-ism the joystick must be in "neutral" position or pushed forward. To do these moves in X/Z-ism the opponent must be far from Rose. Jab Punch - abbreviated as JP; also known as "Light Punch" or LP in the PSX - Standing JP - Rose does a quick punch. - Jumping JP - Rose does a quick horizontal slash in the air. - Crouching JP - A quick punch. Strong Punch - abbreviated as SP; also known as "Medium Punch" or MP in the PSX - Standing SP <far> - Looks exactly like her standing JP, but her palm emits lightning. <near> - A slap across the chest. - V-ism notes: both the <far> and <near> standing SP have nearly the same range, despite their name; also the <far> standing SP is a little faster than the <near> standing SP, despite their animation (!) - Crouching SP - Looks exactly like her crouching JP, but her palm emits lightning. Fierce Punch - abbreviated as FP; also known as "Hard Punch" or HP in the PSX - Standing FP <far> - Rose whips out her shawl. <near> - Rose whips out her shawl, but at a shorter distance than her <far> standing FP. - V-ism notes: despite their names (and their graphics), the ranges <far> and <near> standing FP are not that different. - Jumping FP - Rose whips out her shawl in a downward arc. - Crouching FP - Rose punches upward, her shawl trailing her fist. Short Kick - abbreviated as SK; also known as "Light Kick" or LK. - Standing SK - Rose kicks to shin level.. - Jumping SK - A weak downward kick. - Crouching SK - A low, short ranged ground kick. Forward Kick - abbreviated as FK; also known as "Medium Kick" or MK in the PSX - Standing FK <far> - Rose plants her shawl on the ground then extends her foot. <near> - Rose hops with a kick. - V-ism notes: despite their name, both <far> and <near> FK have nearly the same range; the <far> version is slightly faster than the <near> - Jumping FK - Rose does a kick that makes it look like she's trying to lie down in the air. - Crouching FK - Rose kicks out far and low. Roundhouse Kick - abbreviated as RK; also known as "Hard Kick" or HK in the PSX - Standing RK <far> - Rose plants her shawl on the ground then extends her foot _far_. <near> - Rose flips forward in a cartwheel. Quite fast. - V-ism notes: the <near> standing RK is worthless in X/Z-ism, but is quite a poking weapon in V. - Jumping RK - A long-ranged aerial kick. - Crouching RK - Rose swings her feet out for a long-ranged sweep. *** Command Moves *** Slide - hold joystick down-forward, press FK - Rose slides forward. Soul-piette - hold joystick forward, press RK - Rose does <near> standing RK, then takes a step forward. *** Throws *** Soul Drain - while Rose and the opponent are on the ground near each other, hold back or forward, press any two punch buttons - Rose does a handstand on her opponent's head, holding on. To increase the damage, waggle the joystick and press buttons repeatedly. Soul Fade - while Rose and the opponent are in the air near each other, hold back or forward, press any two punch buttons - Rose does a aerial version of her Soul Drain *** Special Moves *** Soul Spark - move the joystick back, down-back, down, down-forward, forward, then press any punch - Rose whips out her shawl, and a fireball comes out of it. Soul Spiral - move the joystick down, down-forward, forward, then press any kick - Rose wraps her shawl around her fist, then lunges forward with it Soul Throw (also known as "Soul Thru" in the PSX) - move the joystick forward, down, down-forward, then press any punch - Rose jumps up and forward, and if your opponent is in Rose' path, she'll grab and throw him down Soul Reflect - move the joystick down, down-back, back, then press any punch - Rose whips her shawl around her with the JP version. If the shawl hits an opponent's fireball, the fireball will disappear and a small amount of energy will be added to Rose' Super Combo Meter. Also, the next Soul Spark Rose will throw will have its damage increased. - Rose arcs her shawl out and downward with the SP version. If the shawl hits an opponent's fireball, the fireball will be reflected back at him. - Rose whips her shawl down then up in front of her with the FP version. If the shawl hits an opponent's fireball, the fireball will be reflected back upward at about 30 degrees. *** Super Combos *** Aura Soul Spark - move the joystick down, down-back, back, down, down-back, press any punch - Use JP to do a level 1 Aura Soul Spark. Rose whips out her shawl and a fireball comes out of it. - Use SP to do a level 2 Aura Soul Spark. Rose does a cartwheel, then whips out her shawl and a fireball comes out of it. - Use FP to do a level 3 Aura Soul Spark. Rose whips her shawl in an arc, then throws a fireball. If her shawl hits an opponent's fireball, the fireball will be reflected back at him. - Z-ism only Aura Soul Throw - move the joystick down, down-forward, forward, down, down-forward, press any punch - Use JP to do a level 1 Aura Soul Throw. Rose jumps up and forward, and if your opponent is in Rose' path, she'll grab and throw him down. This requires at least 1 block of Super Combo meter. - Use SP to do a level 2 Aura Soul Throw. Rose punches upward, then jumps up and forward, and if your opponent is in Rose' path (or was hit by the upward punch), she'll grab and throw him down. This requires at least 2 blocks of Super Combo meter. - Use FP to do a level 3 Aura Soul Throw. Rose dashes forward with a punch, punches upward, then jumps up and forward, and if your opponent is in Rose' path (or was hit by the previous two punche), she'll grab and throw him down. This requires at least 3 blocks of Super Combo meter (in Z-ism) or the entire Super Combo Meter (in X-ism). - Z-ism and X-ism only. In X-ism, only the level 3 Aura Soul Throw can be done and not the level 1 and 2. Soul Illusion - move the joystick down, down-forward, forward, down, down-forward, press any kick - Rose will be trailed by several shadows. During the Soul Illusion, all of Rose' Regular Moves and her SK Soul Spiral hit three times, while the rest of her moves (with some exceptions) hit a little over twice the normal number. - Use SK to do a level 1 Soul Illusion, FK to do a level 2, RK to do a level 3. This requires 1, 2, and 3 blocks of Super Combo meter, respectively. The higher the level, the longer the duration of the Soul Illusion. *** Taunt *** Wagging finger - press the start button (or select in the PSX) - Rose closes her eyes, shakes her head, and wags her finger. She will then say something randomly (from one of her sayings in the win poses section). - Z/V-ism only, once per round, but during a Variable Combo, Rose can taunt as much as you want *** Zero Counters *** Soul Collect - block an attack on the ground, push the joystick forward and press the same strength punch and kick buttons (eg. FP + RK) - Rose hops forward. If the opponent is within range, Rose will grab and hop behind him, stunning him temporarily. - Z-ism only; requires 1 block of Guard Meter and 1 block of Super Combo Meter Sweep - block an attack on the ground, push the joystick forward and press the same strength punch and kick buttons (eg. FP + RK) - Rose does a sweep (her crouching RK). If the opponent is within range (and not blocking) he will fall backward, spinning. - V-ism only; requires 1 block of Guard Meter and 50% of Super Combo Meter *** General Strategies *** Lesson #1 -- Which -ism should be used ? For most characters, this is V-ism. This isn't simply so with Rose. Let us dissect the general merits of V over Z/X, any why they don't apply to Rose. Lesson #1.1 -- V-ism Controllable limbs In Z/X, the computer decides when to use the <near> and <far> versions of a move. Often, these moves are quite different. For example, Ryu's <far> RK is a roundhouse kick to the head. It's a completely useless move. His <near> RK, however, is an axe kick that is blindingly fast, has incredible range, and hits twice. Unfortunately for Z/X-ism Ryu, he cannot use the <near> RK unless he's standing very close to his opponent. V-ism Ryu, however, can simply push the joystick back, press RK -- and, presto, he can do the axe kick from any range ! However, the properties of Rose' <far> and <near> attacks are not much different. Her <far> and <near> SP and FK, for example, are nearly identical in all respects except graphics. Her <near> FP, while being cancellable, is not very useful otherwise (since it can be ducked under) and her <far> FP doesn't see much action at all. In fact, the only Regular Move that V-ism enjoys is the <near> RK. The <near> RK is worthless in X/Z-ism (why on earth does she have a long-ranged move that can be only used at close range ?), but is a good poking attack in V-ism. Unfortunately, this move is still not that fantastic and is overshadowed by the more effective moves in Rose' arsenal. Lesson #1.2 -- V-ism Super Combo meter First off, Rose doesn't charge as fast as other characters under V-ism. Most characters can charge up their Super Combo meter by simply doing whiffed Specials or throws. Try this on Rose and you'll feel the difference. If you're using other characters under V-ism player, Rose feels like a turtle. She also has no Special Move that she can whiff safely. Whiffing a Soul Throw is an invitation to be hit. The best move she can whiff is the Soul Reflect, which fills the bar _very_ slowly. Lesson #1.3 -- VC's The advantage of a VC are two-fold. First (the most obvious part) is that it's used to deal combos. A VC can be activated at anytime you can do an attack. The activation time is nearly zero, so you can do a attack, activate the VC, then continue the combo. Strictly speaking, any combo that Rose can usually perform (except those involving Super Combos) will benefit from a VC activation. The JP + SK activation acts a mini Soul Illusion, effectively doubling most attacks, while the SP + FK and FP + RK activation provides for some confusion. There are, of course, V-ism specific combos. These are combos that can only be performed with a VC active. The mark of a good V-ism character is one that has many VC's to be used in different situations. I have listed only three VC's (since these are the only ones I know), both of which have extremely limited application and pathetic damage. Scouring the internet for more (useful) combos has not yielded more results. The difficulties of her VC's are discussed in Lesson #184.108.40.206. The second advantage to VCs is the brief invulnerability period they confer upon activation. The most practical use for this is to activate the VC in order to go through an opponent's attack, then combo him as he recovers. However, since Rose has lousy VCs, this advantantage is nearly pointless. If you really want to deal multi-hit, damaging combos, go for Z-ism instead. Rose' VCs simply do not compensate for the lack of Super Combos. Now we'll discuss the merits of Z over V. Lesson #1.3 -- Super Combos While a proper VC can deal more damage than Super Combos, Rose' Supers Combos' strength does not come from damage (although a level 3 Aura Soul Throw certainly dishes it out) but from the flexibility it gives Rose. Her Super Combos cover many bases: projectiles, anti-projectile, anti-air, juggles, massive combo potential, and even initimidation. Why not X-ism ? Lesson #1.4 -- One Version of One Super Combo As I've mention in Lesson #1.3, Rose' Super Combos give her flexibility. X-ism only has one version of one kind of Super Combo she has under Z-ism. Also, according to some accounts, X-ism Rose' Aura Soul Throw can be escaped from by mashing buttons. I can attest to this. What's the point of having a Super Combo your opponent can escape from ? Lesson #1.5 -- Not that great damage increase X-ism is supposed to grant 20% more damage than Z-ism. This is, at best, an overestimate. Rose' damage increase in X-ism is only about 10%. Her X-ism Aura Soul Throw inflicts the same damage in X-ism as in Z-ism. Lesson #1.6 -- No air-block, no ground roll The importance of air-block and ground roll are variable. At lower levels of gameplay (such as two SFZ beginners duking it out), having an air-block is of utmost importance, while the ground roll is ignored. At mid-level gameplay, most players realize that jumping is not to be over-used, so air-blocking takes a backseat to better ground games. The importance of ground rolls are also discovered by mid-level players, who start to use it as part of their confusion tactics. At the very highest levels of gameplay, players know that while air-blocking is not the key to effective gameplay, it's infinitely better to have one when it counts. Ground roll, on the other hand, fades again from use (but not completely) because a really good player won't be fooled by it anymore. X-ism has no air-block and no ground roll. Why deny yourself of these moves just for the sake of inflicting 10% more damage for your Regular Moves ? Lesson #2 -- Moves discussion Here I'll divide Regular Moves into Need to Know, Nice to Know, and the Forgettable. Lesson #2.1 -- The properties of moves Moves have a "Start-up". This is the time between pressing a button and the time when the move actually hits. Most moves (particularly Regular Moves) have a very small and negligible start-up. Some, however, have rather long ones. Start-up time is a very important thing to mindful of. If your opponent uses a move with a large start-up time (such as if Ryu's attempts a fireball) you can stop it by using a move that has a small start-up time (such as a fast move like a jab, provided, of course, you're close enough). Moves have a "duration". Duration is the brief amount of time that a move can hit. Duration is usually only important with aerial (jumping) moves. For example, try jumping and pressing SK. Rose will stick out her foot -- and she'll her foot extended for quite some time. Now try jumping and pressing RK. Rose will extend her foot, then quickly retract them. The important of duration is simple -- the longer the duration, the easier it is to hit with. Finally, moves have a "recovery time". This is the time Rose requires to recover (to be able to block or do another move) right after finishing one. For example, do a Soul Spark. Notice that Rose is vulnerable for a quite a long time. She can't move aa she's "recovering" from her Soul Spark. In general, the more powerful the move, the longer the recovery time. The recovery time of certain moves can be cut short (such as in a "cancel"/ "2-in-1"). For all intents and purposes, all aerial moves have the same recovery time (since you can usually do one aerial move at a time anyway). Moves have "range", which is usually used to describe how far a move can hit. A move that is termed long-ranged can hit an opponent farther than usual. This is a rather relative term, so use a bit of common sense. Moves have a "hit area". This is similar to it's range, but hit area is usually used to describe which parts of a character's body can inflict damage while doing an attack. Most moves will only hit with the limb being extended. For example, when Rose does a jumping SK, only Rose' leading foot will inflict damage. However, if Rose does a jumping FK, not only does her leading foot do damage, but her entire lower torso and even her hands can. Another example: Zangief's punches reach out quite far, but his hit area only covers his wrists, not his fist. What this means is that in order for Zangief to inflict damage, his wrist, not his knuckles, must hit the opponent. All of this may not sound logical (and is a often complained about), but that's CAPCOM for you. Moves have a "priority". When two characters attack simultaneously, the one with the higher priority wins. A move's priority is affected by it's speed, range, and hit area, but some moves have plainly more priority than others. The most infamous high-priority attack is Ryu and Ken's Dragon Punch. Very few moves will beat it. Rose, in general, has slightly higher priority moves than most other characters (mainly because she's fast and her moves have long range). Moves have "damage" -- the amount of... er... damage it can inflict. The damage inflicted by a move influces the hitstun/blokstun time as well as how far a character is pushed back when hit. A jab will just nudge you opponent backward (and stun him only for a little while), while a fierce punch will push him back farther (and stun him longer). Also, there is such as thing as "scaling damage" in SFZ3. Basically, the less life a character has, the less damage attacks do. For example, doing a level 3 Aura Soul Throw when your opponent's Life Bar is full will do around 50% damage. If you do the level 3 Aura Soul Throw when his Life Bar is already at 50% it will only deal around 30% damage. Damage scaling also affects combos -- the greater the number of hits in a combo, the less damage the individual attacks make. Finally, there are certain characters that take less damage from attacks than others. Zangief, for example, takes less damage when hit than Ken. All of these are reasons why I did not include specific damage values of the attacks -- simply too many factors are involved. Lesson #2.2 -- Need to Know These are moves you must be completely familiar with to use Rose effectively. Lesson #2.2.1 -- Crouching JP This move is _fast_, with decent priority and range (for a jab). The damage, however, is pitiful. It's a very useful move. First, it's an attack that can link to practically anything in Rose' arsenal. When opportunity presents, hit your opponent with a crouching JP, then link to another attack. Second, the it's a great defensive move (see "Frozen Rose" and the various strategies, all discussed later in this document). If your opponent is pressing the attack, you can use it in an attempt to interrupt whatever he's doing. It's also useful in ground fake-outs, especially against V-ism opponents (see strategies section). The crouching JP is also cancellable, but do _not_ do this. Because it inflicts so little damage (and, therefore, it causes very little blockstun/hitstun), if you attempt to cancel it into a Special Move or Super Combo your opponent will likely be able to block and counter-attack. Because the crouching JP pushes an opponent such a small distance, it can be used to tick. Do the jab, and once it's blocked, walk over and throw your opponent. This won't work against higher-level opponents, but will certainly rip scrubs apart. Lesson #2.2.2 -- Crouching SK This move actually sucks. It inflicts very little damage, it's priority isn't that hot, and it's hit area is horrible. So why did I include this move under "need to know" ? Two reasons. First, it's fast (but not as fast as the crouching JP) and can link to Rose' other attacks. If you can hit you opponent with a crouching JP, chances are you can stick in a crouching SK right after it. Second, it plays an important adjuct to Rose' ground games, particularly against V-ism opponents. This move is cancellable, but like her crouching JP I wouldn't recommend it. It can also be used to tick. Lesson #2.2.3 -- Jumping SK Rose' jumping SK is very fast (extremely short start-up) and has very long duration. It's priority is _very_ high, and few things will beat it. The sole disadvantage is the minimal damage it inflicts. This move has four basic uses. First, as air-to-air. The jumping SK is enough to stop most attacks when both Rose and your opponent are in the air. Second, it's excellent air-to-ground, as very few anti-air moves can stop it reliably. This won't stop you opponent from trying -- so watch out, because jumping SK inflicts so little damage you'll feel short-changed if your opponent manages to hit Rose anyway. This move is a also good ticking weapon. Hit your opponent with only the tip of Rose' foot, land, then throw him. Finally, this move can be used to start combos, but because of it's minimal damage, there are other, better moves for this purpose. Lesson #2.2.4 -- Crouching SP This move has very good priority, very slightly longer range than the crouching JP, as well as longer duration (which, unfortunately, means it's also slower) and tremendous hit area -- the area directly above Rose' arm can also be hit by this move (from the lightning perhaps ?) The crouching SP can be used in the same situations as the crouching JP. It can link (but is harder to do so) and can be used defensively. The strength of the crouching SP, however, is in it's poking ability. Within it's range, there are very few attacks that will beat it. This move is also cancellable (such as into a SK Soul Spiral), so if you manage to poke successfully you can quickly turn it into a combo. An unusual use for this move is anti-air. Because the area above Rose' arm is within it's hit area, it can actually stop poorly-timed jump-in attacks (this is rather difficult, but a real crowd-shocker). Lesson #2.2.5 -- Crouching FK This is Rose' primary poke. It's long-ranged, rather fast, and good priority. If used as a poke, keep in mind that the farther you are from your opponent, the better the crouching FK. In other words, try to poke with the crouching FK in such a way that only the very tip of Rose' foot touches your opponent. This move is cancellable (into a Soul Spiral, for example). Lesson #2.2.6 -- Jumping FK Like Rose' jumping SK, the jumping FK is fast and has good duration (but not fast nor as long lasting as the jumping SK). On the upside, it inflicts more damage and has a _huge_ hit area and range plus comparable priority. The jumping FK is used in nearly the same way as the jumping SK is, but because it's slightly slower, it requires a bit more timing. Also, it's hard to use in a tick -- it pushes your opponent too far away. The unique strength of the jumping FK, however, comes from it's hit area. It's _big_. dispite being called a kick, all of Rose' limbs (feet, legs, arms, hands, and her butt) can hit. This is Rose' primary cross-up attack. Cross-up is discussed later in this document. Lesson #2.2.7 -- Crouching FP Rose' crouching FP has two uses. First, it's anti-air. It's pretty much average as far as anti-air moves go. It can hit aerial characters only from certain angles and requires a bit of timing. However, Rose does a a very lethal anti-air juggle: crouching FP -> Soul Throw. While it's unlikely to you'll ever land this combo against an expert opponent (because they wouldn't jump around much in the first place, or they'll jump from an angle not covered by the crouching FP), learning this combo is reason enough to master the crouching FP. The second use of the crouching FP is in combos. This move is readily cancellable to most of Rose' Special Moves and Super Combos. Unfortunately, this move has very poor range. If you aren't careful, it may miss completely. An example of a combo that can easily miss is: jumping FP -> crouching FP -> (any Special/Super) Learn the proper range of the crouching FP, especially right after a jumping attack. Lesson #2.2.8 -- Soul Spark Rose' fireball differs from other character's in some ways. First, the shawl Rose whips out prior to releasing the "spark" pushes an opponent to the very tip of it. The length of the shawl is determined by the punch used to do the Soul Spark. A JP Soul Spark pushes your opponent a little distance, while a FP Soul Spark pushes your opponent pretty far away. This bit of info may come in handy when you want to create some distance between Rose and your opponent. Trying to use the Soul Spark when your opponent's back is near a wall is a death sentence for Rose. Since's he's already cornered, he won't be pushed back anymore, and he may be able to recover fast enough to punish Rose as she recovers from the Soul Spark. Second, the Soul Spark is notoriously hard to combo with. Not only is the joystick motion harder than Ryu's fireball, but because Rose' shawl pushes the opponent away, the spark won't hit him at all. In fact, only the JP Soul Spark will combo reliably (and it's pretty spotty at best). Third, the damage of the Soul Spark can be increased by absorbing an opponent's fireball with a JP Soul Reflect (discussed below). This is a one-shot deal (one absorbed fireball = one Power Soul Spark), and is more like a piece of trivia rather than useful knowledge (so don't ruin your game by recklessly absorbing fireballs in an attempt to increase the Soul Spark's damage). Use the Soul Spark judiciously. Throwing it at your opponent blindly hoping that you'll hit is the mark of an amateur. As much as possible, use it solely in combos, as its recovery time is very long. Lesson #2.2.9 -- Soul Spiral The kick used to start the Soul Spiral determines it's start-up, recovery time, and number of hits. A SK Soul Spiral starts up fast, recovers fast, and hits once. A FK Soul Spiral hits up to two times. A RK Soul Spiral starts up slow, recovers slow, and hits up to three times. If a Soul Spiral hits, your opponent will be knocked down. This is Rose' main combo Special Move. If it's blocked, you're opponent will likely be able to counter-attack, so try to use this move only if you're sure it will hit. The SK Soul Spiral, however, can be used against an opponent even if you're not sure it will hit -- provided only the very tip of Rose' fist will touch your opponent. In fact, here's a strategy I like to use (if I have a full Super Combo meter): do a series of kicks -> then end with a SK Soul Spiral with only the tip of Rose' fist touching my opponent -> do a level 3 Aura Soul Throw. This is a bit risky, I know, but it's so nice to see the look of surprise on their faces. Pretty soon the stop trying to counter-attack whenever I do a Soul Spiral. FK Soul Spiral has no practical use -- it's too slow recovering if blocked and if you're sure you're going to hit then use the RK Soul Spiral instead (although there are situations that only FK and not the SK Spiral will hit, the risk of missing is still too great). With that being said, the RK Soul Spiral can only be combo'd safely right after a crouching FP. It's too slow to be combo'd from any other Regular Move. Lesson #2.2.10 -- Aura Soul Throw The Aura Soul is Rose only "Need to Know" Super Combo. A level 1 Aura Soul Throw is a souped-up version of her Soul Throw, with better start-up, priority and hit area. This move will _not_ hit a character on the ground. While this move certainly has it's uses (it's effective anti-air, and very nasty in a crouching FP -> level 1 Aura Soul Throw juggle), I almost _never_ use this move unless I'm pretty desperate and the opportunity presents itself. Save your Super Combo meter for the ones below. A level 2 Aura Soul Throw is very useful. First, it's a powerful anti-air move. Because it hits multiple times, do _not_ treat it like an Soul Throw -- wait until your opponent is nearly on the ground then do it. The first few frames of animation are practically invulnerable and thus justifies this delay. Second, it's a good move to use in a combo. Unfortunately, the range isn't too hot and therefore I rarely use it in this manner. Third, it's a good defensive move against an opponent who's standing too close and attacking. Since the first few frames are invulnerable, it can go through attacks (such as Ryu's hop kick) and punish your opponent, or you can use it as a Reversal when your opponent is trying to attack while Rose is knocked down. A level 3 Aura Soul Throw is one of the most powerful moves in SFZ3. The first frames of animation covers a huge area and is invulnerable, plus it inflicts massive damage. First, it can be used in combos (see the combos section). Second, it can punish mistimed moves, such as a crouching RK done from a distance (which Ryu and Ken players love) or right through fireballs. This move is so powerful it justifies leaving yourself vulnerable from small periods of time (such as a blocked SK Soul Spiral) in order to lure your opponent into attacking. This move can also be used against jumping characters, but take note: if you use this move against an opponent almost directly on top of Rose it can miss. Note: X-ism Rose can only perform the level 3 Aura Soul throw and not the level 1/2. She inflicts the same damage as Z-ism Rose. Note: the level 3 Aura Soul and X-ism Aura Soul Throw can be both escaped from by mashing buttons, but the X-ism version is much easier to do so from. Lesson #2.2 -- Nice to Know Nice to know moves are those that are not as useful in general, those that are useful only against certain characters, or those that are useful only when an opportunity arises (and you can't use anything else). Lesson #2.2.1 -- Standing JP The standing JP is _very_ fast, with decent priority and area. For nearly all intents and purposes, it's the equal of her crouching JP. So what's wrong with the standing JP that it's relegated to "nice to know" instad of "need to know" ? While Rose can certainly link from standing JP in the same way she can link her crouching JP, Rose has a harder time linking from a standing position. Most of her links are based from a crouching position, and moving the joytsick up and down just in order to link attacks is not good form. Besides, her standing JP sometimes whiffs when your opponent is crouching (such as Blanka). The standing JP, however, has a unique application: anti-air. With the proper timing, the standing JP will snuff a lot of aerial attacks. Learn how to use the standing JP as anti-air -- the shock value is worth it. I just love it when Akuma jump attacks with RK. I press JP and watch Rose' fist go througg Akuma's leg and hit him cleanly. Lesson #2.2.2 -- <far> Standing FP Rose whips out her shawl a distance. This move has low priority and rather slow recovery, but the area it covers and it's range make it an ideal move to punish mistakes. Lesson #2.2.3 -- Jumping FP With this move, Rose hips her shawl out in an arc. Decent priorty and damage. Rather large hit area, and it can hit even those opponents slightly above Rose. This move has several disadvantages. First, Rose has other, higher priority moves -- if you're trying to win an air-to- air exchange, this move will make you feel short-changed. Second, the hit area is directed to the areas in front of Rose, so it's very hard to hit someone directly beneath her -- this move is hard to use as a cross-up. Third, the range of this move is shorter than her jumping FK -- again, in an air-to-air situation this move may not be the best for her. Fourth, this move notoriously hard to hit "deep" with -- if you're trying to start a combo with the jumping FP your timing must be precise, otherwise you'll be pushed too far out for the rest of your combo to hit. Lesson #2.2.4 -- <far> Standing RK This is Rose' longest ranged Regular Move and can hit opponents as far as 1/2 screen distance away. That's about it. While this move will never see much action, it's still nice to know, as you use it to punish mistakes from a distance. A few brave souls use it to poke. I don't recommend it, as the recovery time and priority aren't too good. Lesson #2.2.5 -- <near> Standing RK Rose flips forward then sticks her foot out overhead. While this move is utterly worthless in X/Z-ism, in V-ism this is quite a poking weapon since it's long ranged and rather fast. Lesson #2.2.6 -- Crouching RK Beginners love sweeps, and Rose' crouching RK seems truly incredible. It's rather fast on the start-up, _extremely_ long ranged, and has decent priority. It's also slow as hell in recovering. If Rose sweeps and whiffs, your opponent can pretty much do anything to you. While this move has it's merits, I almost never use it against a decent opponent. Lesson #2.2.7 -- Jumping RK An incredibly long-ranged aerial kick. Excellent priority, and pretty fast, too. Too fast, that is. The duration of this move is _very_ short, so it requires far more timing than her other aerial moves. Once you've got the timing down, however, this is a great air-to-air and air-to-ground move and can easily replace the jumping FP. Lesson #2.2.8 -- Soul Throw Theoretically, you can catch an aerial opponent with this move. Realistically, the Soul Throw has a tiny hit area, no matter which punch button you use (which controls the height which Rose jumps). In order to use it effectively, you have to anticipate your oppponent's jump -- but even if have ESP it's still hard to catch you opponent because the Soul Throw has nearly zero priority and almost any move will knock Rose out of it. Let's face it -- as anti-air this move sucks. It also can't be used against an opponent on the ground (in case any were hoping to use it against the likes of Zangief or Sagat standing). In juggles, however... The Soul Throw is best used right after you hit your jumping opponent with something else. The prototypical move to use is the crouching FP. Cancel the crouching FP into a Soul Throw and there is no escape (although you won't see "2 hit combo" appearing... apparently, the Soul Throw is, indeed, a "throw" and therefore won't normally count as a combo). Even if you don't cancel the crouching FP the Soul Throw can still hit (but in that case your opponent can sometimes hit you out of it). Another use I've found for the Soul Throw is to get out of corners. For example, if Rose' back is already to the wall, you can attempt a FP Soul Throw to try to get behind your opponent. This is an extremely danagerous stunt, but since it's pretty unorthodox sometimes your opponent won't react effectively. Lesson #2.2.9 -- Soul Reflect The Soul Reflect's primary use is anti-projectile. Akuma, Ryu, Ken, Rose, Sagat, Dan, Sakura, Charlie, Guile, Chun-Li, and Bison's projectiles will be affected similarly (JP Soul Reflect absorbs, SP reflects horizontally, FP reflects diagonally). As mentioned, the JP Soul Reflect not only increases Rose' Super Combo Meter, but also increases the damage of her next Soul Spark. Rolento's knives will be reflected horizontally, even with the FP version. Cody's knife will bounce off Rose and fall to the floor, while the stone will break up (in both cases it appears that Rose simply blocked). The Soul Reflect cannot be used against Super Combo fireballs (such as Ryu, Akuma, and Rose'). Also, multiple projectiles such as from Charlie's Sonic Break or a VC are extremely hard to reflect. Supposedly, it's possible to Reflect Dan's Super Combo fireball, but I haven't verify this. The Soul Reflect can be used to inflict damage. It will jerk your opponent upward slightly if it hits, and there are some combos that take advantage of this. Realistically, though, the Soul Reflect is next to useless against characters with no fireball (or those not using theirs). While this move is undoubtedly useful, don't rely on it to get you through every fight. Lesson #220.127.116.11 -- Problems with the Soul Reflect VC Two VCs I listed here are based on her Soul Reflect. There is, however, a very big problem when using the Soul Reflect in a VC -- it tends to cancel too easily. In the first combo [FP Soul Reflect -> Slide], if you do the Slide too fast the FP Soul Reflect will not hit. This combo is too hard for me to land consistently. During the times that I did land the combo consistenly (for around 12 hits before reaching the corner), the damage was very small. When I tried using the combo in a real match, I realized that I must be either nearly tipping the opponent over before I activated the VC or I did a deep cross-up FK first for the combo to hit properly. The second combo is much easier than the first (but it's still pretty hard -- doing the SP Soul Reflect still required tons of timing) and dealt decent enough damage. Unfortunately, the opponent had to be in the air _and_ in a corner for it to work. The only practical way to place my opponent in _that_ situation would be to do the first combo flawlessly (or him to be dizzy in a corner). I play V-ism Akuma, Ryu, Ken, Zangief, and Honda fairly well. Rose' VCs are harder than any of them, don't nearly inflict as much damage, and are not useful at all. I threw V-ism Rose in the trash. Lesson #2.2.10 -- Soul Illusion During the Soul Illusion Rose is trailed by shadows which duplicate her every move. Her regular moves hit 3 times, while her other moves are increased slightly more than 2 times. Throws are unaffected. The duration of the Soul Illusion is fixed. The higher the level used, the longer the duration. The Soul Illusion is best employed in combos, since a lot of combos can inflict more damage with Soul Illusion active. There are also Soul Illusion specific combos (see the combos section). Only the level 1 Soul Illusion is worth using since combos don't last long enough to justify a level 2/3. Outside combos, Soul Illusion also confers greater guard crash capability (all those extra hits take out the Guard Meter, too), as well as a form of intimidation. Most beginners and a lot of intermediate players freeze up when the see the Soul Illusion activated. Lesson #2.2.11 -- Aura Soul Spark The closer you are, the more damage the level 1 Aura Soul Spark inflicts, but even if you're point blank it doesn't do a lot of damage. The only use of the level 1 Aura Soul Spark is if your opponent's Life Bar is about to be emptied, and you want to inflict enough damage even if he blocks (since it hits 3 times). Another use of the level 1 Aura Soul Spark is when your opponent throws a fireball, and you want Rose' fireball to go through theirs -- take note that this won't work against Super Combo fireballs (maybe it will work against Dan's). In a level 2 Aura Soul Spark, Rose will do a cartwheel (it looks like several Soul-piettes), hitting 3 times before whipping out her shawl with a 3-hit fireball. The initial frames of this move are invulnerable, and since this move takes her forward a great deal, this move can be used to go through an attack (such as an opponent's fireball). This move is also mildly useful if your opponent's Life Bar is about to be emptied -- since it hits so many times it can deal a decent amount of damage even when blocked. The greatest use of the level 2 Aura Soul Spark, however, is in conjunction with a level 1 Soul Illusion -- lots of hits ! In the level 3 Aura Soul Spark, Rose will do what looks like her SP Soul Reflect prior to throwing a 3-hit fireball (for a total of 4 hits). The shawl will also give off an arc of energy that will reflect projectiles the same manner as a SP Soul Reflect would, but can also reflect Super Combo fireballs. Ideally, Rose should do this move when the opponent throws a Super Combo fireball so that both the returning Super Combo fireball and Rose' fireball inflicts damage. Realistically, it's probably better to do a level 3 Aura Soul Throw through your opponent's fireball, since the level 3 Aura Soul Throw inflicts way more damage. Lesson #2.2.12 -- Soul Drain The Soul Drain is useful in these situations: a) As a tick. A tick is defined as a weak attack followed by throw. As a holdover from World Warrior, ticks as considered "cheap" by many (personally, I tick only when I know my opponent can take it, when he does a tick first, or if he's using the timer to win). Ticks will rip beginners apart (or anyone else too slow to react). b) Right after a cross-up attack. A lot of players are too busy trying to block a cross-up properly that they fail to react to a throw right after one. c) The frontal throw. Just walk right up to him and throw. You'd be surprised by how many people you can catch with this (they'd be surprised, too). d) Your opponent made a mistake and you don't feel like doing a combo (too lazy?). There are two problems with Rose' Soul Drain. First, it technically not a throw -- it's a hold. You have to mash the buttons and waggle the stick just to deal enough damage to make the throw attempt worthwhile. Second, I still haven't figured out the mechanics of where Rose lands -- sometimes she lands to the right of the opponent, sometimes to the left. This is a serious problem, since you might end up cornered right after the Soul Drain. Lesson #2.13 -- Forward Ground Roll You can do a Ground Roll in similar situations where you can air-recover. You can also do a Ground Roll after an air-blocking an attack. Ground Roll has two basic uses. First, it can cross the screen faster than anything else Rose can do. This is useful in going back into the fray of the action quickly, hopefully catching you opponent off-guard. It's so nice to do roll under a fireball then do a combo before Akuma recovers from it. The second use of the ground roll is to get out of corners. I usually do this right after doing an air-block (since I'd rather air-recover if I was hit in a corner). I try to roll into attack range if possible, but sometimes I just roll away as far behind the opponentas possible (especially when faced with Akuma or Zangief). The Ground Roll has a very big problem. You can be hit while rolling. I use the Ground Roll sparingly when faced with a good opponent. Lesson #2.3 -- Moves to be relegated to the back of your mind These are moves that require special situations to be useful. Otherwise, you can forget them. Lesson #2.3.1 -- Slide Rose can slide under certain fireballs (namely, Bison's). She can probably slide others, but the timing is hideously difficult, and considering the amount of damage the slide does, not worth it. The slide can almost inflict a modest amount of damage under Soul Illusion, and there's a VC based on the slide. Otherwise... This move has poor recovery and only passable priority. There are probably other uses for the Slide, but I haven't found them yet. Personally, I avoid it like the plague. Lesson #2.3.2 -- Soul-piette Rose does her <near> standing RK, then takes a step forward. In theory, this move should be an attack that brings you closer to an opponent, hopefully surprising him. This is assuming that your opponent is so slow as not to punish you viciously as Rose is recovering. It has the same priority as the <near> standing RK, but even in V-ism this move isn't worth the risks. Lesson #2.3.3 -- <far> and <near> standing FK Both of these moves are used as "anti-sweep". Both moves take Rose' torso off the ground, so, theoretically, Rose becomes immune to low attacks momentarily. The <far> standing FK is more effective in this regard than the <near> version. I'm convinced that only someone with ESP can use this move consistenly. In practice, you have to do these moves _before_ your opponent sweeps. And if you could do _that_, you wouldn't need this document anymore. Seriously, if you're the type who can predict your opponent's moves that well, you'd probably do a level 2/3 Aura Soul Throw or a cross-up combo instead. Lesson #2.3.4 -- Zero Counter Zero Counters are moves of last resort -- the penalty for using them is very high (1 block of Guard Meter, 1 level or 50% of Super Combo Meter), and the damage they inflict is laughable (the Soul Collect doesn't even inflict any). Why don't I include Zero Counter under Lesson #2.4 ? Well, it's because Zero Counters do have some use... First is when you're going to be Guard Crashed. Since you're going to lose some amount of Guard Meter when you're Guard Crashed, might as well do a Zero Counter and avoid the "stunning" effect being crashed does. Second is when you're about to take die from a blocked Special or Super Combo, such as a Super Combo fireball or Dragon Punch, or even some VC's. Third, it's a flashy way to win. Being finished off by a Zero Counter is a very humbling experience. Finally, there's a theory that you can hit your opponent right after doing a Soul Collect. I've seen this happen a lot in SFZ2, but not here in SFZ3, and I haven't been able to do it myself. Lesson #2.4 -- Useless moves Well, maybe not _totally_ useless. Rose' moves like her standing SP certainly aren't _useless_, it just so happens she has more effective moves that can deal with the same situations. Here's the list: jumping JP (use jumping SK instead), <far> and <near> standing SP and <close> standing FP (use crouching SP instead), jumping SP (use jumping FK/FP/RK instead), standing SK (use _anything_ instead), Soul Fade (if you're good enough to use an airthrow, then you're good enough to do a crouching FP -> Soul Throw juggle). Lesson #3 -- Jump-attacks and combos Jumping then attacking has two purposes: to hit you opponent while he's in the air or to hit your opponent while he's on the ground. This section deals with the latter. Jumping then attacking an opponent on the ground can be divided into two categories. The first is the "early" aerial attack, also known as the "shallow" attack (as opposed to "deep", which is discussed later). A early jumping attack involves trying to hit the top of your opponent's head. Simply jump the attack on your way down. Try this (PSX training mode): jump, then as you begin to fall press FP. Rose will whip her shawl out and hit Ken's hair. The advantage of doing early attacks is that they will snuff most anti-air or air-to-air. The disadvtange of an early aerial attack is that your opponent may have the time to recover before Rose' feet touch the ground. At best, this may mean that Rose can't combo further. At worst, this may mean your opponent will counter attack rather viciously. A deep aerial attack involves trying to hit your opponent's chest or waist. You can do this by attacking _just before_ you land. As with the example above, jump on your opponent. However, press the FP half a second just before landing. If you're successful, Rose' shawl will hit Ken at chest or waist level. Deep aerial attacks are required if you want to do jump-in combos. A jump-in combo is basically a jump-attack followed by another attack on the ground. An example would be jump-in FP -> crouching RK. Do the jumping FP as "deep" as you can then do a crouching RK. Take note that there is such as a thing as hitting too deep. This occurs if you wait to long before attacking in the air. At best, your just be pushed too far out to combo further. At worst, your attack might miss (something utterly very odd -- your attack will simply go through your opponent and not hit him) and take you by surprise (allowing you opponent an opportunity to react). Take note that in order to hit early or deep at will you have to learn the timing of the moves. As with a lot of things in SF, practice is the key. Lesson #3.1 Cross-ups Cross-ups are a type of jump-attack where you attack your opponent in such a way that he can't tell whether you're going to land to his left or to his right (and therefore, hopefully confusing him enough so that he won't be able to block at all). Although theoretically all aerial attacks can be used to do cross-ups, Rose' jumping FK is best suited for this purpose. As with ordinary jump-attacks, cross-ups can be early or deep. For those of you with PSX's, go to training mode and set the dummy to "stand" and "all-guard". Let Rose stand at the very tip of her crouching FK range. Now jump forward and try to hit Ken with a jumping FK. If Ken turns around and blocks, then you've just made a successful cross-up attack (BTW, the CPU isn't fooled by cross-up attacks -- cross-up attacks are for human opponents). If Rose' jumping FK whiffs it likely means she's standing too close or you pressed FK too late. If Ken doesn't turn around, Rose is standing too far away. This is an example of an early cross-up. Now set the dummy to "crouch" and "no guard" and let Rose stand a step beyond the tip of her crouching FK range. Jump forward and try to hit Ken with a jumping FK. If you did a successful cross-up, Ken should turn around before being hit. It should look like Rose is hitting Ken's head with her hands instead of her legs. This is an example of a deep cross-up. As mentioned earlier, cross-up attacks are meant for use against human players, not the CPU. Cross-ups are ususally used against an opponent that has been knocked to the ground (about to get up) or are crouch-blocking too much. Cross-ups are an integral part to mid-to-high level gameplay. However, be aware that the Shotos (or anybody with powerful anti-air) can deal with cross-ups with vicious results. When should you do jump-attacks ? The following assume that you are facing a moderate to expert level opponent (and therefore can react to a poorly timed jump attack). Further details on when you can jump in with an attack are given in the Vs. section. _Never_ jump forward just to gain ground. This is a _mistake_. If you want to come closer to your opponent then _walk_. Excessive jump-attacking is a mark of an amateur. Just because the CPU lets you jump in with an attack doesn't mean a human opponent would. To train yourself against excessive jumping, try this: consistently finish level 8 difficulty in the PSX without jumping. Not even once. If you jump forward, consider the match lost and start from the beginning. Right after your opponent does a dumb move. Only those with extremely slow-recovering moves (such as those throwing fireballs) are vulnerable to this. For example, If Ryu throws a fireball at you, jump in with an attack and combo. You have to be fast reacting, tough. Remember that Ryu's infamous fireball -> dragon punch trap is based on nailing opponents who jump-attack too late. Right after you've knocked you opponent down. When you've knocked an opponent down, he's ripe for a cross-up (provided you're within range), but a simple frontal jump-attack works, too. Remember: a lot of characters are capable of doing anti-air as a reversal attack (again, Ryu is an example) and can hit Rose from a jump-attack. The character has poor anti-air Ahh, Charlie. And Z/X-ism Vega. And even Chun Li. Some characters simply can't deal with Rose' jumping attacks. Details are in the Vs. Section, but remember that even if these characters can't deal with jump-attacks you still have to use some common sense. Air-to-air. Once you've gotten comfortable with Rose aerial moves you can start using them to knock your opponent out of the air. Her SK works particularly well. Lesson #4 -- Linking A link is a type of combo where two Regular Moves will connect if you press the appropriate buttons with the proper timing. I'll divide linking into several levels. Remember that links are easier the closer you are to your opponent. There are definitely more, (such as those involving standing attacks), but these should get you started. Easy Links. Rose has only one move that links easily: her crouching JP. If at any time the crouching JP hits or is blocked, you can immediately link to another attack. Practice until these links become second nature. crouching JP -> crouching JP/SK What this means is that if you hit your opponent with crouching JP, you can do another crouching JP or a crouching SK and chances are it will hit, too. Just press the buttons as fast as you can. Moderate Links. Moderate links should always be attempted if possible. These moves are pretty fast in themselves, so even if they don't link properly your opponent will unlikely try to respond to it. crouching JP -> crouching SP/FK crouching SK -> crouching SP/FK crouching FK -> crouching SK Moderate links, unlike easy links, need a little more timing, so simply pressing the buttons quickly won't work. Hard Links. Hard links are just that: hard to do. These links demand that you be right next to your opponent plus impeccable timing. Use these only to show off. crouching SP -> crouching JP crouching SP -> standing RK crouching SP -> crouching SK crouching FK -> crouching RK Once you get the hang of doing 2-hit links, try mixing them up. Going past 2 hits gets exponentially hard... crouching JP -> crouching SK -> crouching FK crouching JP -> coruching FK -> crouching RK Add an jump-attack... Jump-in FP -> crouching JP -> crouching FK Finally, try something like this... cross-up FK -> crouching JP -> crouching SK -> crouching SP -> standing RK Lesson #5 -- Cancellable attacks/2-in-1's As mentioned in Lesson #2, all moves have a recovery time. However, there are some Regular Moves whose recovery time can be shortened by doing a Special Move or a Super Combo fast enough. This is called "cancelling" (because, in effect, the recovery time is "cancelled" by the Special/Super Combo). These Regular Moves are called "cancellable attacks". The Regular Move -> Special/Super Combo sequence is often called "2-in-1's" (because it's as if you're doing two moves in one motion). Lesson #5.1 -- Rose' Cancellable attacks Here's a list of Rose' cancellable attacks. standing JP, crouching JP <far> and <near> SP, crouching SP <near> FP, crouching FP crouching SK crouching FK Theoretically, any of the above listed moves will cancel and combo into any of Rose' Special Moves and Super Combos. Realistically, just because you can cancel an attack doesn't mean that it will all hit properly. For example, attempting a JP -> Soul Spiral generally equals death for Rose. Your opponent will never get hit by such a combo, and will likely be able to recover before Rose can. You have to know which Regular Move will cancel to what Special Move/Super Combo and not leave you vulnerable to counter attack. Naturally, the closer you are to your opponent, the easier to hit with a 2-in-1r. standing JP/crouching JP/crouching SK -> level 2/3 Aura Soul Throw There are no other safe cancels with standing JP, crouching JP, and croucing SK. As previously mentioned, its better to link to stronger attacks first. <far/near> standing SP -> JP Soul Spark/FP Soul Reflect/level 2/3 Aura Soul Throw Details on the Soul Spark and Soul Reflect have already been mentioned. To reiterate, only the JP version of the Soul Spark and the FP version of the Soul Reflect will reliably hit. crouching SP/crouching FK -> SK Soul Spiral/FP Soul Reflect/ level 2/3 Aura Soul Throw, level 2 Aura Soul Spark Crouching FP -> JP Soul Spark, any level Soul Spial, level 2/3 Aura Soul throw, any level Aura Soul Spark If you've noticed, the stronger the Regular Move used, the safer it is to cancel it. Lesson #5.2 -- How to do 2-in-1's There are three methods to do 2-in-1's. Method 1. This is the simplest (but not necessarily the easiest). Do a cancellable attack, then do a Special Move/Super Combo as fast as you can. For example, hold the joystick in any down position, then press FP. As soon as the crouching FP hits, move the joystick back. down-back, down, down-forward, forward, then press JP (the motion for a JP Soul Spark). If you're successful, the message "2 hit combo" will appear. This is my preferred method of doing 2-in-1's. Basically, it involves doing the moves consecutively as fast as possible. Method 2. This method involves doing a cancellable attack _during_ the motion for the Special Move/Super Combo. The cancellable attack will hit first, then as you complete the Special Move/Super Combo it will hit, too. Let's take the combo example from method 1 (the crouching FP -> JP Soul Spark combo). Hold the joystick back, then move it down-back, down, press FP, continue moving the stick down-forward, forward, press JP. In this method, you are trying to do the crouching FP while in the middle of the motion for the JP Soul Spark. This is actually simpler than it sound, since this is the preferred method for a lot of players. This method is also "faster" than method 1, since the joystick movement is more fluid. Method 3. This method takes advantage of the "button-release" action the CAPCOM has supposedly programmed into their fighting games. According to some sources, whenever you press and release a button, this actually counts as _two_ button presses. Hold the joystick back, then move it down-back, down, press and _hold_ FP, continue moving the stick down-forward, forward, release FP. This combo is slightly different from the one in method 1 and 2. This is a crouching FP -> FP Soul Spark. Of the three methods mentioned, this is undoubtedly the fastest. The disadvantage in this method is that it's obviously impossible to use with a lot of combos (such as those involving two different buttons, such as crouching FP -> RK Soul Spiral). Lesson #6 -- Juggles and air-recovering A juggle involves comboing your opponent while he's in the air. Strictly speaking, Rose seems to be a juggler (due to her Soul Throw, Aura Soul Throw, and Soul Reflect -- see the Combos section). Juggles come in four varieties. The "idiot's juggle". This involves hitting your opponent in the air multiple times because he's too dumb to air recover. This text won't be discussing such combos (since anything you do to opponents like this will work anyway). The "flipped juggle". This juggle means that your opponent can flip out of the combo you are doing, but still can't avoid being hit. The crouching FP -> Soul Spark is an example. The "true juggle". Your opponent can't do squat as you bounce him like a ball in the air. Rose' VCs fall into this category. So when can you air-recover ? What are the guidelines for doing true juggles ? First, you obviously cannot air-recover while in a hitstun (since you almost can't do anything during a hitstun anyway). This is the basis of a lot of true juggles -- hit with a lot of attacks and air-recovery can't be done. Second, there are some moves you plainly can't air-recover from. If you stood still and let Akuma hit you with a 3-hit JP Dragon Punch you can air recover. If Akuma hits you with a 3-hit FP Dragon Punch, however, you won't be able to air-recover and will fall on your back. What these moves are you have to learn for yourself -- a list of such situations wouldn't be useful (since nobody can be expected to memorize and reconize them all). Third, you can't air recover while your opponent is attacking, missed or not -- for as long as he is in the "duration" phase of a move, Rose will not recognize the air-recover command. What, does this mean he has the ability to influence your ability to air recover ? Yes. This is most noticable in VCs. For a PSX training example, pick V-ism Charlie. Set Breakfall to Back. Push the dummy to a corner. Activate the VC with JP + SK, then do a Flash Kick. Right after the Flash Kick the dummy will air-recover. If, however, you press SP right after the Flash Kick, the dummy will _not_ air-recover, even if the SP missed completely. Here's another example: this time, pick V-ism Zangief, set breakfall to Back, then push the dummy to a corner. Activate the VC with FP + RK, then do a kick Spinning Clothesline. After 2 hits, the dummy will air-recover. If, however, you do a crouching FK right after the Clothesline, the dummy won't air-recover and instead fall to the ground. So what's the point of knowing all this ? You now know why some of your own juggling attempts fail. Also, once you familiarize yourself with the rules of juggling you're on your way to creating your own juggling combos. You can now also spot if an opponent made a mistake in his juggle an allowed you the opportunity to do an air-recovery (since simply mashing the punch buttons hoping to recover usually results in being combo'd again -- besides, it looks amateurish). Lesson #6.1 -- When to air-recover Details on when to air-recover are given mostly on the specific Vs. section, but here are the guidelines I use. Unlike the other aspects of SFZ3 gameplay, when or when not to air-recover is basically affected by instinct. I will do an air recovery when: a) There's a danger of being juggled by a Regular or Special Move. Akuma players love trying to do this. In this case I _immediately_ do a "back" air-recovery. Depending upon which move they tried to do, I'd either simply block the juggle attempt or do an attack (such as FP). I've noticed that right after an air-recovery, Rose' aerial attack gain an unprecented amount of priority -- enough to stop most juggling attempts (but not all -- it's still tough to stop a Dragon Punch after an air-recovery) b) I want to land as far away as possible. This works only if Rose' back isn't to a wall. This is something I do when fighting characters like Zangief. I do a "back" air-recovery and stick out a long-range attack while doing so (such as FK or RK). c) My opponent hits me with a counter-hit but failed to juggle. For example, I jumped in with an attack, but got hit with a crouching FP (such as from Charlie). Sometimes they fail to follow up their attack with a juggle. In this case, I do a "forward" air-recovery. Like in situation a), I use a bit of common sense in deciding whether to attack or simply block on the way down. d) There's a danger of being juggled by a Super Combo. Akuma, Ryu, and especially another Rose are fond of this. In this case, I wait at the last possible moment before doing a "forward" air-recovery. Again, this is another situations where simply mashing the buttons in order to air-recover is contraindicated. Most players who attempt to juggle to Super Combo expect either an early air-recovery or a "back" version. Mashing buttons will probably net you an early air recover and/or one where you cannot control you descent trajectory. e) When my back is to the wall and there's a danger of being juggled (by anything). I _immediately_ do a "forward" air- recover. There's a caveat to this, though (read futher below). When is it good _not_ to air recover ? When I want to do a ground roll instead is one. Another is when I've already been hit in the air by two seperate moves and my back is to the wall. Lesson #6.1.1 -- Being juggled with your back to the wall. The following discussion assumes that your opponent is _not_ doing a VC, which will hit a falling character for as long as the VC is active. If you've been hit by two seperate moves while your back is to the wall, the third move will _miss_, thus you'll fall to the floor, ending the juggle. The easiest way to demonstrate this is by using Akuma (PSX training mode). Push the dummy to a corner then do 3 hit JP Dragon Punch, then immediately do another. The message 6 hit combo appears. If you try to do a third Dragon Punch, chances are it'll miss. The lesson here is not to blindly air-recover just you can. If you air-recover, you can be hit again instead of simply dropping to the floor. If you've been hit by two moves while your back is to the wall, don't try to air-recover anymore. This is particularly true against characters with anti-air specials such as the Shotos. Lesson #8 -- Combos Put the previous lessons together and we've got the combos section. Written below are some of Rose' more useful combos. These are not all of her combos (that'll take way too much space). Some of them may look pathetic, but not all games are won by big combos. Easier-than-dirt Combos Jump-in RK -> crouching RK - Not only easy, but useful, too. This combo will reach out quite far. Never be ashamed of doing a two-hit no-brainer. [crouching JP] repeat * 3 - easy links = easy combos. I use this against the likes of Zangief if I get cornered. Easy Combos crouching JP/SK -> crouching FK -> SK Soul Spiral - I use this to punish mistakes (and don't have a charge in my Super Combo meter). crouching SP/FK -> SK Soul Spiral - This may look like the previous combo, but this is one I use when I'm poking (which is more common situation than punishing mistakes). Since I like to poke with the crouching SP, cancelling it into an SK Soul Spiral whenever it hits seemed logical. This may look like Jump-in FK -> crouching SP/FK -> SK Soul Spiral - An easy, relatively low-risk three hitter. Moderate Combos Jump-in FP -> crouching FP -> level 3 Aura Soul Throw/RK Soul Spiral - The hardest part here is to range the crouching FP. Sometimes it misses entirely if you hit too early or too deep with the jump-in FP. You can try replacing the crouching FP with a crouching SP/FK. Truth is, any combo involving the FP automatically becomes a "moderate" difficulty combo. (opponent in the air) crouching FP -> Soul Throw - A "flipped juggle". Extremely useful, and will often scare opponents from jumping again. Can be flipped out from, but I haven't seen it happen. The Soul Throw can be replaced with a Level 1/2 Aura Soul throw and make this a "true juggle". Here are the fancy combos -- good damage and look great, but don't expect to land them often. level 1 Soul Illusion -> level 2 Aura Soul Spark - Pretty easy to do (but hard to set up). Lots of hits, but not that damaging. level 1 Soul Illusion -> cross-up RK/jump-in SK -> crouching FP -> RK Soul Spiral - This is an example of a ordinary three-step combo (jump attack -> ground attack -> Special) that can benefit greatly from Soul Illusion being active. Unfortunately, activating Soul Illusion also makes such combos harder to do, since all those extra hits tend to push Rose farther away faster (therefore making the rest of the combo hard to connect with). cross-up FK -> crouching JP -> crouching JP -> crouching JP -> level 3 Aura Soul Throw - An example of doing multiple links to a cancel. This is harder than it's worth. jump-in FP -> crouching FK -> FP Soul Reflect -> level 3 Aura Soul Throw - Works best in corners. This is an example of taking advantage of the Soul Reflect's effect of jerking an opponent upwards. You can sneak in an attack (such as crouching SP) prior to the Aura Soul Throw. jump-in RK -> crouching SP -> FP Soul Reflect -> crouching SP -> level 1 Soul Illusion -> level 2 Aura Soul Throw - This is from Greg Dawson's document. I've never landed it against a live opponent. Here are the three VC's that I know of. (activate VC) -> [SP/FP Soul Reflect -> whiff Slide] repeat - Can be used from almost anywhere, but it's _very_ hard and lousy damage. Once you reach the corner, use the next one. (activate VC JP+SK) -> [SP Soul Reflect] repeat - A corner only juggle. Not as hard as the first one, but still harder than VC's of other characters. (activate VC JP+SK) -> [Slide -> JP Soul Spark] repeat - A picked this up from Gamest Magazine, where they said it can be used against Birdie and Dhalsim. I have yet to do either consistently. What I've listed for the VC are only the repetive, juggling parts of the VC. You can do an jump-attack first, then when you land do the VC. Lesson #9 -- The poking game Poking means doing an attack, even if it's not a sure hit. What's the rationale ? The attack might hit anyway. And if it hits, combo away. If it's blocked, no loss -- his Guard Meter just dropped a few more points. If your opponent over-reacts and does a slow move, close in a combo. Lesson #9.1 -- Poking Generalities; the "footsie"; faking So, how do you poke successfully ? First, you have to be solidly familiar with Rose' range, particularly her crouching FK. Second, you also have to be familiar with the ranges of your opponent's attacks. Keep in mind that when poking, it's best to stay at the farthest range possible -- take full advantage of Rose' superior range. Walk forward and backward, weaving in and out, but never going close enough for your opponent to hit you (which is why you have to be familiar with his attack range -- it won't do you any good to walk into a sweep). This is often called the "footsie". Check if your opponent is also playing footsie. If he is, then you can assure yourself that he is, at the very least, a moderately skilled player. Remember: stay out of his attack range -- don't make the mistake of pushing the joystick forward while your opponent also walks forward. Note: not all characters can play footsie, particularly Charlie and other charge characters. Note: nearly all V-ism characters _will_ play footsie, even if they are charge characters -- since VC activation is button press, V-ism characters will try to manuever you into making a mistake before unleashing a VC. Personal note: Not all good players play footsie, so never assume that a player just crouch-blocking there is an amateur -- this can prove to be fatal. I consider myself an excellent player, but I'm not the type who waggles the stick back and forth, trying to confuse my opponent (I'm quite lazy). In fact, I get a laugh out of those playing excessive footsie. I let them weave as if they're having an epileptic attack, then crush them the moment they make a mistake. Avoid corners. It's easy to find yourself slowly backing into a corner when playing footsie. Being cornered cuts your defensive options severely, plus there are a lot of VCs that are corner-specific. Conversely, don't go out of your way to corner your opponent. While cornering him cuts down _his_ defensive options, Rose lacks the moves to maintain a corner lock for very long. Do quick attacks (such as standing JP) that you _know_ will miss. This is in the hopes that your opponent will over-react and do something stupid. For example, amateur ARK players are prone to doing a dragon punch the moment they see an attack coming. Sometimes even expert players over-react and activate a VC even when they're too far away to use it. Watch for this and punish their mistake with a vicious combo. If you're feeling confident, you can even use slower attacks and intentionally miss. An example is Rose' <far> standing FK. As with quick attacks, your aim is to make your opponent over-react. Now we go to the meat of poking: hitting your opponent. Instead of weaving forward and backward, walk into Rose' attack range and do an attack such as her crouching SP or crouching FK. Your goal here is to hit your opponent while maintaining enough distance so that he can't counter-attack or he simply blocks. The dangers here is if your opponent reacts with a high-priority move (such as a Dragon Punch). The solution to this is to be unpredictable, which is the very reason why you should try to fake your opponent out (see previous paragraph). One thing I really love about Rose is that her moves that are used to poke can cancel into her Specials and Supers Combos. If your poke is blocked, cancel into a Soul Spark. If the poke hits, cancel into a Soul Spiral (or a Super Combo). Lesson #9.2 -- The Soul Spark poke Some people will argue the value of projectiles in poking. IMHO, Rose should keep using the Soul Spark down to a minimum and not toss it out like the Shotos would -- she lacks the anti-air to keep a Soul Spark trap. However, the Soul Spark can do something most projectile moves can't -- it pushes an opponent very far out. Rose can use it at close range without fear of the opponent blocking and counter-attacking (provided they aren't already in a corner, of course). The FP version will push an opponent a half-screen away, and is very useful if you find yourself in a corner. The following are special poking situations. Lesson #9.3 -- "Creeping Rose" Move forward a bit, then do a crouching SP. Rose' crouching SP has enough priority, speed and range so that it will stop almost any move that it meets head on. I called it "Creeping Rose" because I use it to gain ground slowly -- particularly if my opponent is trying to push me into a corner. It's useful against a turtling opponent already in a corner, just make sure you don't get _too_ close. Originally, I used this tactic against Dhalsim, but it can also be used against opponents such as the Shoto's (only the crouching RK will cleanly beat Rose' crouching SP), Adon, and Chun-li, Zangief, and others. I know it doesn't work well against Honda or Blanka. If the crouching SP hits cancel to a SK Soul Spiral. Lesson #9.4 -- Kicking their feet right under them When faced with low-priority characters, such as Charlie, or those trying to poke back (such as the Shotos using their crouching FK), or those without projectiles (such as Zangief) use the crouching FK. Rose crouching FK has much longer range than he crouching SP, but it seems it also has lower priority. The best use for the crouching FK is to hit your opponent's legs if he tries to poke at Rose. In this situation, Rose will cleanly beat a lot of characters. Lesson #9.5 -- "Frozen Rose" Here's the situation: Rose has been knocked down, and your opponent jumps in the air in order to a cross-up or a deep attack as she gets up. Rose lacks an invulnerable anti-air against such attacks (other than her level 2 Aura Soul Throw), and you are forced to block the aerial attack. Immediately after blocking, do a couple of crouching JPs. This works wonders even against the best players. If your opponent pulled off a perfect aerial attack, Rose will be trapped in her blocking animation (her blocktun) -- she won't punch despite your button press but won't trade hits either. If your opponent mistimed his attack or he's planning to throw, then he'll eat the JPs. Due to the crouching JP' speed, range and priority, doing it right after blocking will stop a lot of attacks -- nearly all Regular Moves and even Super Combos like Akuma/Ryu's Super Combo Fireball or Zangief's Final Atomic Buster (but not a Dragon Punch -- use a bit of common sense). You should then link to stronger attacks, such as crouching FK then cancel into a SK Soul Spiral. Lesson #9.6 -- The "Neutral Zone" This is a tactic that is most useful when playing Dhalsim, but sometimes Rose, with her long-ranged attacks, can sometimes make use of it, too. When a character is about to land from a jump (his feet are a few pixel off the ground), any attack he makes simply won't come out -- at this height, aerial attacks can no longer be used and it's too early to use standing or crouching moves. I call this height the "Neutral Zone". When an opponent jumps in from a distance where it's too far him to hit you with his jumping attacks, do a crouching RK _right before_ he touches the ground. Your opponent will be forced to block, and the crouching RK will take a healthy chunk off his Guard Meter. You can always wait for your opponent to touch the ground, but attacking while he's in the "Neutral Zone" ensures that he won't be able to counter-attack or jump again. Also, he'll be pushed back. Remember: you're goal is not to inflict damage, but to poke safely and wear away at the Guard Meter. BTW, this is one of the few uses of the crouching RK as a poke. This is a very slow recovering move, and shouldn't be used to poke in general. ================ Rose Vs. Tactics ================ *** Vs. Strategies *** These are strategies that I've come up from personal experience. No, I haven't won a major SFZ3 tournament, but these tactics have worked for me. Some of the tactics presented seem... "turtly" and cheap. Let me point out that these tactics are for winning (as far as I can tell) and not casual play. Also, these tactics all assume Z-ism Rose (which, as I've pointed out, is her best -ism). The "Threat" entry comprises several things. First, it's a measure on how strong that character is in general. Second, how powerful is that character against Rose (Adon, usually ranked somewhere in the middle tier, can pose problems to Rose, thus his "moderate to high" rating; Dhalsim, on the other hand, is a one of the best characters in SFZ3, but may have a hard time when facing Rose, thus his "moderate to high" rating instead of just "high"). Third, it's an indirect measure of how good your opponent is in general (for example, Z/V-ism Balrog is next to useless against Rose, thus he should have a "low" threat rating, but X-ism Balrog can actually give Rose a headache -- something only an experienced player will know how to do, thus the "moderate" rating; another example: Akuma is pretty powerful -- the whole range of players use him, from beginners to experts, thus I gave him a "low to high" threat). The "Common -ism" entry represents which -ism players mostly choose for that character. Most of the time, it's Z-ism. Players who choose other -isms are likely those who are fooling around, expert players, or both. I've also included which -ism is more powerful, in my opinion, for that character. Most characters have a "Moves of note" entry. This is by no means a complete list of that character's moves, but simply what moves are effective (therefore more used) when facing Rose. I have no entries for the PSX characters Fei Long, Guile, and T. Hawk, Evil Ryu and Shin Akuma. Since they aren't in the arcades (and therefore I'll never meet a challenger playing these characters), I can't comment on their gameplay. * Rose Vs. Adon * Threat - moderate to high Common -ism - Z (while a good Adon player will likely use any, I'm not impressed with V) Moves of note - jumping FK (Adon does a horizontal aeril kick; this is his aerial attack of choice; fast; good priority; can cross-up) - Jaguar Crunch (top-down rushing elbow attack) - Rising Jaguar (double knee to the air; extremely high priority) - Jaguar Tooth (Adon bounces off the screen then heads toward the opponent foot first) - Jaguar Kick (reverse somersault; low priority, but tricky in X-ism) - Jaguar Varied Assault (several elbows to rising knee or several elbows to rapid punches) Rose and Adon have roughly equal priorities on their basic moves. Adon's specials, however, are extremely powerful against Rose. Tip #1 -- Assessing Adon A good Adon player will only jump in the following situations: when you've done a Soul Spark or a crouching RK, and as a cross-up (usually after Rose has been knocked down). Adon has his Jaguar Tooth and Kick to get him in the air, so it's unlikely that he'll jump just to gain ground, and a good player will never do a blind jump-in attack. Tip #1.1 -- The Soul Spark Use the Soul Spark only in combos. Remember: Adon can cross the screen very easily, so throwing him a Soul Spark blindly is an invitation to be hit. An Adon player who isn't familiar with your playing style (like someone you've never met before) will likely jump back as soon as the round starts. Watch carefully for the jump. If he jumps back, throw him a Soul Spark so that he'll land on it. If he jumps upward, nail him with a level 3 Aura Soul Throw. Note: this may not work with X-ism Adon, who can simply Jaguar Kick over your attack. Tip #2 -- How Adon plays Adon has two basic methods of fighting. a) Adon Turtle. Adon inflicts a little damage, then stays away from his opponent. He then uses the Rising Jaguar against jumping opponents and the Jaguar Tooth against fireballs. b) Aggresive Adon. Since Adon has high-priority moves covering many ranges, aggressive players will likely poke at their opponents. Sample Adon pattern: cross-up FK -> crouching JP -> crouching SK -> crouching FK -> standing RK. At farther distances, the Jaguar Tooth and Jaguar Kick come into play, particularly against defensive opponents. Agressive Adon players will often go for guard breaks. They will almost never jump except as a cross up or when you miss a Soul Spark. The first type is the most commonly met by Rose. Tip #2.2 -- Dealing with Adon Turtling Familiarize yourself with the range of the Jaguar Varied Assault -- find out what is the closest range Rose can throw a Soul Spark without being nailed by it. After you've learned this range, watch Adon's stance. If he's crouch-blocking, throw Souls Sparks at him, randomly alternating between JP and FP versions. If he's stand-blocking, start poking. Why is it that I recommend fireballing crouch-blockers ? I've noticed that turtlers crouch-blocking can't react fast enough to jump over a fireball (but can do a Jaguar Varied Assault -- go figure). If Adon is standing, however, he's keeping his hands loose in order to jump or to do a Special, but not to defend. Poke at Adon with crouching FK (remember: hit with the tip of Rose foot) and crouching SP (this is for defensive reasons, just in case Adon sticks a foot out). If Adon blocks the crouching FK, cancel into Soul Spark. If you have a full Super Combo meter, you can try to cancel your poke into a SK Soul Spiral (and if Adon tries to retaliate after the the Soul Spark hit him with a level 3 Aura Soul Throw). Tip #3 -- Dealing with the Rising Jaguar; stay grounded Adon's Rising Jaguar is worse than the dragon punches (against Rose anyway). It will out-prioritize all of Rose' aerial moves and has excellent range against aerial opponents. Plus, because Adon has no move with a very poor recovery time other than his Super Combos, he is rarely open to an aerial attack. Keep close to the ground, preferably crouching, because the Rising Jaguar has difficulty against crouching opponents and the Jaguar Crunch is rather predictable. Remember: if the Rising Jaguar hits Rose while her back is against a corner, recover in the air and stick out a FP/FK to discourage juggles and aerial throws. Poke at Adon. While Adon may also get into the poking game, Rose is at a slight advantage because she can combo into a Soul Spark/Spiral. Pattern: crouching FK -> JP Soul Spark/SK Soul Spiral. Remember: distance the Soul Spiral so that only the tip of Rose' fist touches Adon. Tip #4 -- Dealing with the Jaguar Tooth This move is insanely fast, will go over Rose' Soul Spark, can cross the entire screen, must be blocked standing, and has excellent recovery. IMHO, it's an absolutely imbalanced move against certain characters. Rose' defenses against this move include a level 2/3 Aura Soul Throw, blocking, jumping, or getting nearer. If you choose to block the Jaguar Tooth, don't count on being able to counter-attack as Adon recovers. Unless your opponent makes a mistake, Adon will likely recover a little distance away from Rose' attacks. I suggest blocking, then doing a crouching FK -> JP Soul Spiral/SK Soul Spark. Unfortunately, this combo isn't too effective either. If Rose is too far away to deliver a combo, don't be tempted to stand and get closer, or you'll probably end up eating a Rising Jaguar or RK. Since the Aura Soul Throw can only be used a couple of times at best and continously blocking is bad for the guard meter, "turtling" by jumping back and air blocking seems to be a viable strategy. You can try sticking a FK as you jump, but if your opponent is quick you'll be hit by a Rising Jaguar, or Rose' leg might be caught by the Tooth. Jumping straight up then sticking out FK can also be tried, but the timing is slightly harder. I've found that the best way of dealing with the Jaguar Tooth is to get closer, between the range of Rose' crouching SP and crouching RK, preferably slightly off-midscreen but not in a corner. This is the range an Adon player will most likely make a mistake in picking the angle for the Jaguar Tooth. The RK Jaguar Tooth be blocked rather easily, leaving Adon close enough to attack. The SK/FK Jaguar Tooth sometimes misses Rose completely, making Adon recover within range of her crouching FK. Tip #5 -- Dealing with the Jaguar Kick and Jaguar Revolver This is a good time to hurt Adon. The Jaguar Kick and Jaguar Revolver have very low priority, despite what they look. If Adon tries a Jaguar Kick/Revolver, try trade hits with a FK (if Rose is in the air) or crouching FP (if Rose is on the ground) then combo. Some Adon players try to chase recovering or jumping opponents in the air with the Jaguar Kick/Revolver. Remember: always stick out FK when recovering in the air or jumping back. Note: All of X-ism Adon's aerial kicks become Jaguar Kicks. It looks as if he's jumping twice in mid-air. The recovery and range are greatly improved, and can easily go over Rose' Soul Spark. Remember: the Jaguar Kick has low priority -- when facing X-ism Adon who relies too much on this move try jumping in the air and meeting him with a FK. Also, watch out for Adon jumping backwards for no apparent reason. He may be baiting you into a Jaguar Kick, which will lunge Adon's foot towards Rose even as he's jumping back. If the Jaguar Kick has such low priority, why not hit Adon with a crouching FP ? The problem with X-ism Adon's Jaguar Kick is the "double jump" effect it does. Rose' crouching FP might miss completely and Adon will land right behind her (then combo). Tip #6 -- The Jaguar Varied Assault sucks/is the best move in the world The Jaguar Varied Assault looks cool, but it deals very little damage if you're familiar with damage reduction. The recovery is also very slow. Add the fact that few of Adon's moves will combo into the Jaguar Varied Assault, makes it a truly poor move. However, the starting animation of the Jaguar Varied Assault is practically invulnerable and has _very long_ range, making it a nasty surprise move. In my experience, the Jaguar Varied Assault seems to be most effective against Rose in two situations: a) Rose' Guard Meter and/or life bar nearly depleted. In this situation, Adon players use the level 3 rapid punch version of the Jaguar Varied Assault in order to finish her off. b) Rose does a fireball at close to medium range. Adon can react to any fireball with the Jaguar Varied Assault and nail his opponent. The first situation is where a Zero Counter might be useful. The second can be handled by simply refraining from throwing too many Soul Sparks at close range (see tip #1). If Adon attempts a level 1/2 Jaguar Varied Assault and misses, chances are he'll land behind Rose. Most players fail to take advantage of a blocked Jaguar Varied Assault. They often wait for Adon to come to the ground before trying to counter-attack or throw. Rose has a better option: before Adon lands do a standing JP -> Soul Throw. Remember: the level 3 Jaguar Varied Assault is a multi-hit move, and it is therefore easy to do damage reduction. Remember: if Rose is hit the Jaguar Varied Assault while in a corner recover in the air and stick out a FP/RK to discourage aerial juggles and throws. Tip #6 -- Adon in the air; when to use the Aura Soul Throw When Adon jumps, you can expect him to use the FK. All his other aerial attacks are either angled strangely or have unusual timing. If Rose is in the air, most of her attacks will trade hits with it, so don't sweat it. If you like to show off, you can trade hits with it using jumping FP, which inflicts more damage. If Rose in on the ground, watch out. Rose' Soul Throw will be snuffed by Adon's jumping FK. Rose' crouching FP, however, will sometimes trade hits or even snuff Adon out, provided Rose hits Adon high in his jump. If Rose' crouching FP connects, immediately follow with a Soul Throw to catch Adon while he's in the air. If Adon is already on his way down, use either a level 2 Aura Soul Throw or simply block the attack. Adon's jumping FK is also used as a cross-up, in which Rose must block. None of her attacks, even the Aura Soul Throw, will stop Adon's cross-up jumping FK. Wait out Adon's combo. Just make sure that, next time, you won't be placed in such a situation again. Occasionally, Adon will use the SK when jumping. His jumping SK has slightly better priority and speed than his jumping FK, but has much lower damage and hit area. The most common use of Adon's jumping SK is if he's trying to a) out-prioritize an aerial opponent or b) luring his opponent to do a crouching FP (which the Adon's jumping can beat cleanly at certain angles). Rose isn't that vulnerable to the first situation. If your opponent likes his jumping SK then meet him in the air with a jumping FP and deal more damage in the exchange. In the second situation, catch Adon with a level 1/2 Aura Soul Throw, or block the knee then throw him, or even gamble with Rose' crouching FP (since it inflicts way more damage). In closing: Rose has a slight advantage over Adon, but because he has no move that leaves him vulnerable for a good length of time he can give her an extremely bad day. Fight Adon at close range as it helps avoid being plastered by the Jaguar Tooth and facilitates poking. * Rose Vs. Akuma (Gouki in Japan)/Ryu/Ken ("ARK" or "Shotos") * Threat - low to high (ARK players display a wide variety of skills) Common -ism - Z for moderate players, V for advanced Moves of note - jumping FK (Ken's oddly-angled, longest-ranged aerial kick) - jumping FP/RK (tons of priority) - crouching FK (a low, long-ranged kick used a poke and in combos) - crouching RK (short ranged, low kick; good damage; causes knockdown; slow recovery; insane priority) - Sakostu-wari (downward chop/fist; must be blocked standing; Akuma/Ryu only) - Inazuma-kakato-wari (slow axe-kick; must be blocked standing; Ken only) - Fireball (flaming projectile; you _should_ know what it looks like) - Hurricane kick (Akuma hits initially hit low and juggles; Ken fast but weak) - Dragon Punch (Ryu hits once; Akuma/Ken up to 3x) - Sempuu-kyaku (hopping kick; looks like a half-baked Hurricane kick; Akuma/Ryu only; used to corner opponents) - Tenma-kujinkyakuu (diving kick; Akuma only; hard to stop) - Hyakki ??? (the "Demon Flip" where Akuma jumps a distance forward with a flip followed by a kick, a roll, a throw, or a punch; used mainly in combos, but may also be used against unprepared players on its own) There are more ARK players out there than all of the other characters put together. Consistently beat him, and you'll run out of opponents (mwa-ha-ha!). Kidding aside, ARK can be very tough (and Akuma is consistenly ranked #1), but I believe Rose can give him a run for his money. Tip #1 -- Stay just within Rose' crouching RK range This is Rose' standoff range against ARK players. Basically, all of her attacks (except the crouching RK) should be out of range. All of ARK's attacks will also be out of range. Rose is at an advantage. Now wait for his next move. If he Fireballs, do a JP Soul Reflect to charge up. If Rose is charged up, do a FP Soul Reflect to reflect the Fireball upwards. Why not a SP Soul Reflect ? The SP Soul Reflect causes the Fireball to return horizontally, which may frustrate your opponent and cause him to stop throwing Fireballs altogether, which is not a good thing. Besides, the returning fireball is pretty slow and won't catch your opponent at all. Also, if you return the Fireball upwards, there's a chance he'll take a risk at walking forwards, which is advantageous to Rose. Finally, Rose' anti-air moves are poor against ARK if he jumps and attacks at this range. Reflecting a Fireball upwards discourages jumping. Look for a Fireball "pattern", meaning that you should look for indications of when your opponent will Fireball. If you can predict when he'll throw a Fireball, jump-in with a combo. For a truly humbling experience, you can even try a level 3 Aura Soul Throw through a Fireball or Akuma/Ryu's Super Combo Fireball. Watch out for players who use FP Fireball, which is hard to react to in time. If you're in the standoff range then suddenly ARK Fireballs, you can count on it being a fast one. Most players react by jumping at ARK, hoping to combo him. It's possible, but at this range the FP Fireball can snag Rose as she starts to jump and a slow Fireball is a trap for a Dragon Punch. If you think you can't do the Soul Reflect fast enough then just block then walk a bit toward ARK to regain distance. You may want to stick out a crouching SP/FK. Tip #1.1 -- Akuma fireballing outside stand-off range; pre-Zero strategies If you are outside the standoff range (the farther the worse) watch out if Akuma throws a fireball. He may try to follow it up with one of the Hyakki moves, particularly the air-throw version. Because of the ability to air-block in the Zero series, a lot of players have forgotten how to simply jump up to avoid a fireball. This is a lesson that must be relearned when fighting Akuma. If Rose and Akuma are distant from one another (at a distance too far away for a jump-in attack or a dragon punch anti-air), do not wait for the fireball to come closer then try to jump forward over it. This is a mistake I see with a lot of novice players. They end up getting nailed mid-air by a Hyakki move. Instead of jumping forward over the fireball, simply jump straight up an let it pass under you. If Akuma attempts a Hyakki move anyway, use Rose FP/SK as you jump. The FP has an initial animation that covers Rose' head, while the SK is simply a high-priority move. Of course, you can always to reflect the fireball. As stated earlier, reflect upwards, as this will frustrate any Hyakki move Akuma may still attempt. See also Tip #6.1. If ARK pokes Rose with crouching FK/RK (which will miss at this range), respond with a crouching RK or level 3 Aura Soul Throw (if you're fast enough). Why on earth ARK players love to weave in and out then stick out an attack that will surely miss is beyond me. If he walks back, follow by walking, but don't close in. Keep the standoff distance, because an ARK player walking back is either luring you into a crouching RK or wants to throw Fireballs at a safe distance. If he jumps back, follow with a jumping FK (which has higher priority than their jumping attacks). If ARK moves towards you, he'll almost certainly try to do a favorite ARK tactic (crouching SK -> crouching FK -> Fireball). As soon as you see him move respond with a crouching SP/FK -> JP Soul Spark. The farther Rose is from ARK, the higher the priority of her attacks (this is exactly the reason why you should stay just within RK range). And don't worry about ARK Dragon Punching Rose' foot (a ridiculous concept in all the SF games that, thankfully, is not as effective in SFZ3). Watch out for the Sempuu-kyaku (see tip #6). If he jumps toward you or does a jumping Hurricane kick, judge the distance at which he'll land. If he'll land some distance in front or behind you wait until he's coming down (at about the height of Rose' head) then pull off a level 3 Aura Soul Throw (ouch!). If you're fast enough, you can also try the level 3 Aura Soul Throw as soon as ARK's feet leave the ground. If he'll land in somewhere near you, you can do one of these things: a) jump and meet him in the air with a FP/SK/FK (only if you're quick enough and he's not Ken/Akuma doing a jumping Hurricane) b) do a Soul Throw (possible, classy, but risky because ARK's jumping FP/RK has tons more priority than the Soul Throw) c) do a level 1 or level 2 Aura Soul Throw (not recommended, see tip #3) d) block (recommended, but gives him a temporary advantage) e) walk a bit forward so that he'll land right on top of you (tricky, classy, see below) f) resist the urge to use the crouching RK when ARK tries a jumping Hurricane; it will probably miss, leaving you open If he'll land right on top of you, do a crouching FP -> Soul Throw (see tip #4). Almost without an exception, ARK players use the FP/RK when jumping (see tip #4). These two moves have good priority against Rose if they're angled in such a way that only the tip of ARK's hand/foot hits Rose. If you're forced to block, don't sweat it. Follow "Frozen Rose". Tip #2 -- Keep combos simple Don't be ashamed of using simple combos like a plain jump-in RK -> crouching RK. The thing with ARK is that they are combo machines capable of dealing massive damage if you make a mistake, and believe me, Rose' combos are sometimes tricky, leaving her open to counter-attack. Chip away at their life with two- or three- hit combos that let you recover at a safe distance if you screw up. Save devastating combos like the jumping FP -> crouching FP -> RK Soul Spiral/level 3 Aura Soul Throw when you're _absolutely_ sure you won't mess up. Tip #3 -- Keep you Super Combo meter full Don't squander you Super Combo meter on moves other than a level 3 Aura Soul Throw. This is by far her best Super Combo, especially against ARK, who present a lot of opportunities to be hit with it. The other Super Combos aren't worth the damage. Tip #4 -- The crouching FP -> Soul Throw works wonders (except against cross-ups and mid-distance jumping RK) This is a really classy move I love. If ARK is on top of Rose do a crouching FP, quickly followed by a Soul Throw, which will catch them even as they recover. Rose' crouching FP works best when the opponent is directly above you. ARK players, however, won't indulge you. They will often approach from the air in two angles: as a cross-up or with only their foot/fist making contact with their oppenent's head. At these angles you shouldn't even try the crouching FP. Follow "frozen Rose". Alternatively, you can try a standing FP, which has better horizontal range than vertical (as opposed to the crouching FP) into a Soul Throw. Do this a couple of times and watch your opponent curse. Normally, the standing FP doesn't combo into a Soul Throw, but it will do so if you opponent came in from the air. Tip #5 -- He's too close for comfort. ARK is in front of your face, about to unleash a high-low game with their Sakostu-wari/Inazuma-kakato-wari, SK/FK, Fireballs, etc. Or maybe you've tripped to the ground, and he's standing in front of you, cooking up his next move. Jab. That's right. Do a crouching JP if he's too close. The JP has insane priority at this range and will stop whatever he's currently doing, be it those Sakotsu-wari, Ryu/Akuma's irritating sempuu-kyaku, or Ken's various kicks. But what if ARK's plan is to wait for your move, then blast you with a Super Combo ? That's ok. Unless your opponent has impeccable timing, trying a Super Combo as Rose jabs is futile. The JP has a good recovery time and you'll be able to block whatever Super Combo they're thinking of. In fact, the only thing that can consistently stop Rose' crouching JP is a Dragon Punch (which will stop almost anything anyway) and Akuma/Ken's Super Combo Dragon Punch (and even then Rose can still block after the first two hits). Tip #5.1 -- What Rose' crouching JP won't stop ARK's crouching FK is difficult to stop with the crouching JP (you can't expect it to do everything for you). This is why I recommend that the standoff range be as far out as Rose' kicks will allow. Tip #6 -- Specific Akuma/Ryu Tips As mentioned in tip #5, the Sempuu-kyaku is indeed irritating. A favorite trap tactic employed by Akuma/Ryu is Sempuu-kyaku -> crouching FK -> Fireball. He'll mix it up with a SK Hurricane kick (which in Akuma's case, is rather deadly because the first hit of Akuma's Hurricane hits low and juggles) to regain distance if he's pushed back too far. Most of Rose' kicks are useless, since they will go under the Hurricane and the Sempuu-kyaku plus Akuma/Ryu's recovery times from these moves is quite good. Rose has two options. The first is to use her crouching FP against the Hurricane kick. I don't recommend this, as Akuma/Ryu often lands a short distance in front of Rose, making her miss completely. The second option, crouching JP, works better in this situation. Wait until Akuma/Ryu does a Hurricane kick. Then do crouching JP as they spin. The JP will mostly miss, but as Akuma/Ryu stops spinning a JP will hit them before they touch the ground (alternatively, once you get the timing of the Hurricane kick better, you can use a crouching SP instead). The crouching JP/SP will cause Akuma/Ryu to jerk backwards in mid-air. Immediately follow up with a level 3 Aura Soul Throw. If Akuma/Ryu manages to block the JP (which is only possible if they started too far away), combo into a crouching FK -> Soul Spark to push them back. The Sempuu-kyaku, unlike the Hurricane kick, is harder to deal with. Although Rose' crouching JP still has higher priority, there's a certain range that will always make Akuma/Ryu win in the exchange -- if the Sempuu-kyaku hits Rose' face at its peak. Akuma/Ryu will often Sempuu-kyaku ay a range that will make it hit with only the tip of their foot, which is not the range that I mentioned, so use the crouching JP anyway. Once the JP hits, _do not_ follow up with a level 3 Aura Soul Throw. Chances are that Akuma/Ryu will be able to land and block it. Tip #6.1 -- The Tenma-kujinkyakuu ("dive-kick") Akuma is deadly with the Tenma-kujinkyakuu. This, I believe, is what pushes him well over Ryu and Ken. It's fast, has nearly unmatched priority, and quite easily combo'd from. Done properly, Rose has no defense against this, unless you're the type who can do a level 2/3 Aura Soul Throw very quickly. Why did CAPCOM give a character a Command Move that only a Super Combo can stop ? Akuma's dive-kick is used in this pattern: jump forward -> dive-kick -> crouching JP -> crouching SK -> fireball -> <pause to see what you'll do> -> dragon punch if you try anything or repeat the pattern if you're turtling. This pattern is mixed up with his Hurricane/sempu-kyaku/crouching FK/sakostu-wari. Aside from the level 2/3 Aura Soul throw (which you can do on the average once per round), there is only one defense against the dive kick. You have to learn the patterns by heart, and know to anticipate when Akuma will jump. Remember: once the dive-kick starts, you can barely stop it. You have to learn jump the moment Akuma jumps in order to pin him while both of you are in the air. If you are having difficulty stopping Akuma in the air, you can opt to simply block the dive-kick then immediately jab afterward ("Frozen Rose"). If your opponent made a mistake in his timing then he'll eat the jab (giving you a breather). One of the most common mistakes I see people make when playing against a dive-kick trap is to jump away from Akuma's fireball. Forget it. If Akuma tosses you a fireball (cancelled from a crouching SK/FK/sempu-kyaku), there is no way to jump away -- you'll only end up getting hit. Tip #6.2 -- When and how to air-recover (Z-ism Akuma) If you've been hit by a Dragon Punch you have to carefully watch Akuma and Ryu's next move. First, check if Rose will hit the wall as she falls (ie. she was hit by the Dragon Punch while near a corner). If this is the case, _immediately_ air-recover (preferrably the forward version, just remember to block). If Rose was hit while mid-screen, do _not_ immdiately air- recover. You have to wait for what Akuma will do next. Some players will try to Super Combo Fireball as you fall. Air-recover as _late_ as you can and use the forward version. If Akuma tries a Hyakii move, air-recover immediately (back version) then do a FP. Tip #7 -- Ken can 'cane (Akuma too) Ken's version of the Hurricane kick spins much faster than Ryu's, and has slightly different applications. The first can be seen with Ken players fooling around with the computer -- SK hurricane kick to Dragon Punch. This works well because the timing of Ken's SK Hurricane is hard to predict, plus most players respond to the Hurricane with a crouching FK (duh!). Alternatively, Ken players try SK Hurricane to throw, particularly if their opponent is turtling. The second application of Ken's Hurricane is similar to Akuma/Ryu's, which is SK Hurricane -> crouching FK -> Fireball. This isn't a very effective, but Ken players use it as part of pressure tactics. The final application of Ken's Hurricane is a replacement to his regular aerial attacks. In the air, Ken's Hurricane has extremely high priority, can combo if timed properly, and is difficult to judge where it will land. Ken players, both good and bad, toy around with his aerial Hurricane in the hopes that it will confuse their opponents. If you see Ken doing an aerial Hurricane, take a look at when he started spinning. If he started the aerial Hurricane before or at the apex of his jump, he's trying to land behind you and luring you to do a crouching RK. Most Rose players become overconfident with her crouching RK and try to use it as Ken lands. This _does not_ work. Ken has fast recovery time from the aerial Hurricane and the crouching RK will likely miss, leaving her open to attack. If Ken started the aerial Hurricane right after the apex of his jump or while he's coming down, then he's tring to do a combo. His legs have insane priority and Rose has almost no defense against this except to block. Lesson: Learn to play Ken, if only to master the range of his Hurricane kick. Note: Not everyone who's using the jumping Hurricane know what they're doing. Some of them are newbies hoping to capitalize on a powerful attack, whose classic symptom is doing the jumping Hurricane aimlessly. Don't be intimidated. Make them pay for using abilities beyond beyond their understanding (mwa-ha-ha!) Tip #7 -- You've hit ARK and he's sailing in the air... If your opponent is good never follow him after he recovers in the air. Whenever ARK recovers in the air, the priority of his moves increase dramatically, and nothing in Rose' arsenal except an Aura Soul Throw will hit him. There aren't many ARK players who realize this. Most of them will jam the controls in an effort to air recover (especially if they've been hit by tip #4), then air block until their feet touch the ground. There are players, however, that have the wits to air recover and then stick out a FP/RK as they are falling. As I've said, the priority of their moves increases, so don't even think of trading hits. Akuma is even more dangerous, as he can do the Tenma-gou-zankuu (super air Fireball) after an air recovery. Tip #8 -- "What ?! The jumping SK beats the Dragon Punch ?!" Probably not, but its been a year since I've seen ARK players use the Dragon Punch effectively as "wake-up" move against Rose. The best way to get the timing of the jumping SK is to jump at ARK as he's getting up from the ground. Aim at ARK's head, not his chest like people normally do to start a combo (ie. land the aerial attack "early"). Like the crouching FP -> Soul throw combo, the jumping SK is a very demoralizing move once you perfect it. Tip #9 -- ARK's JP/SK have short range; even more uses for Rose' crouching JP If at any time Rose blocks a crouching JP from ARK, immediately try to do a crouching JP into a combo. Why is this ? The most common move ARK does after a crouching JP is a crouching FK/FK or Fireball. If your opponent is good enough that he can link those attacks, then Rose will be trapped in her blocking animation (see General Strategies: "Frozen Rose"). If your opponent is too slow to link properly then he'll end up eating Rose' JP. If your opponent is going to try a move other those mentioned, then chances are it'll be too slow to combo properly. Rose' JP will nail them. Finally, ARK will do a crouching JP/SK when they are planning to throw. Rose' jab will prevent this, but do see tip #10. Tip #10 -- The (mis-)throwing ARK Here's an ARK playing style I'm seeing more and more of. They'll do a crouching JP/SK followed by a throw. While "ticking" has been around since Street Fighter began, SFZ3 allows for players to _dileberately_ miss. What sneaky ARK players will do is to throw you once, then, when you're within range again, do a JP/SK -> pause/missed throw/walk -> Dragon Punch. Considering that my usual advice is to counter-attack with a crouching JP right after blocking ARK's weak attacks, I sometimes get caught by the Dragon Punch. If your opponent is using this tactic, switch from the crouching JP to the crouching SK, which is less likely to get hit by the Dragon Punch. Tip #11 -- More ARK patterns Here's another pattern, sometimes used in conjunction with the patterns mentioned in tip #5 and #6: Jump-in attack -> crouching SK -> cross-up attack. If you can react fast enough, you can knock ARK out of the air with a crouching FP. I don't recommend it. Just block the cross-up then either slip into "frozen Rose" or throw him. Here's another: Rose air-blocks one of ARK's jumping attacks -> overhead attack. Most players get caught by the overhead attack because they're still crouch-blocking when they touch the ground. Remember: if you air-block a jumping attack, start doing crouch-JP even as you reach the ground. Tip #12 -- The ARK turtle; the poking game Here's the situation: you beat the living daylights out of ARK in round one, then let him win on round two. In round three, he jumps into a corner and digs in. He jumps over the Soul Sparks you're throwing, and since he's on defensive mode any attempt you make in the air is met with a Dragon Punch. What now ? First of all, take a breather and count to ten. Losing your cool over a turtler is not good PR. The only way to win now is to poke ARK and hope for a guard break (see General Strategies: "Poking Patterns"). Make sure your Super Combo meter is full. You can use the crouching FK -> SK Soul Spiral poke with impunity. If ARK makes any move after the Soul Spiral, make him pay with a level 3 Aura Soul Throw. Tip # 13 -- V-ism Ryu/Ken Stay away from corners ! I cannot stress this enough. Both Ryu and Ken is most effective when you're in a corner. Sure, they may have midscreen VC's, but they're _very_ rare. Ryu and Ken's anti-air VC's aren't too hot, either, so you don't have to take special precautions (aside from what's normal) when attacking them from the air. Ryu, in particular, won't waste his VC against an aerial opponent. Tip # 15 -- V-ism Akuma V-ism Akuma is most dangerous, IMHO, from midscreen or when _he_ is in a corner, since a lot of his VC's start from there. Unlike Ryu and Ken, Akuma's VC's are perfectly balanced -- he has juggles, anti-air, corner crushers, etc. Don't jump on Akuma when he has a Super Combo Meter charge unless you want to lose. Akuma is also the fastest builder of Super Combo Meter charge of the three. IMHO, he severely outclasses Rose, so don't feel bad if you lose to him. In closing: The best way to hurt ARK is to when he's particularly vulnerable. Jab underneath Hurricanes. Reflect fireballs. Stay within the tip of Rose' range and not ARK's. Never gamble on powerful combos and rely instead on easy those easy to recover from. Reserve your Super Combo for the single, devastating attack. When being trapped, don't panic. * Rose Vs. Balrog (M. Bison in Japan) * Threat - low to moderate Common -ism - Z (but X is _way_ more powerful) This assumes Balrog in the arcades (who is "Extra Balrog" in the PSX). Rose has much better priority, range, combos, and speed than Balrog. When fighting Balrog you can simply crouch-block then poke at him with crouching FK -> Soul Spark. Don't get too confident though, especially with X-ism Balrog. His Dashing Punch has great area, range, recovery, and inflicts so much damage (enough to brave the pokes Rose may use). His crouching SP/FK is not to be underestimated. Don't jump around too much, particularly backwards, as a good Balrog player will use his footspeed so that you won't have space to jump forward and attack effectively. * Rose Vs. Birdie * Threat - low (moderate if you're throwing Soul Sparks around) Common -ism - Z Moves of note - Murderer/Bandit Chain (throws of good damage and range) - Bull Revenger (Super combo version of the Murder/Bandit chain; long range) - Body Splash - crouching/standing/near FP (all anti-air) - Bull Horn (Birdie charges with a headbutt; slow, but invulnerable starting animation) - Bull Head (like the Bull Horn but faster and little invulnerability) - The Birdie (Super Combo version of the Bull Head/Horn) There aren't many players who use Birdie. Those who do usually end up playing Zangief instead (that being said, Zangief players play Birdie after being sick of the Russian). Tip #1 -- Soul Spark applications Keep an eye on Birdie's Super Combo meter. If it has a charge in it, don't do the Soul Spark at mid- to far- ranges. The Bull Revenger was specifically designed to be used against fireball-happy opponents. However, if Birdie is at close range, you can safely feed him Soul Sparks and SP Soul Spirals without retaliation (the Bull Revenger is notoriously hard to aim at close range).. Tip #2 -- If Birdie's in the air, watch out Birdie's aerial moves have incredible priority against grounded characters. If Birdie jumps on you while you're in the ground, see if you're fast enough to hit him before he reaches the apex of his jump (with a crouching FP/Soul Throw). If you're not, don't try to stop him. Rose' basic moves will be snuffed out if you try to hit him on his downward movement from the jump, while the Soul Throw is hard to use because of Birdie's angle. Birdie also has a variation of Zangief's "Snuffle" (see Rose Vs. Zangief). If your opponent is trying to use Birdie's aerial superiority I suggest you block then counter-attack with a crouching JP to a combo. Tip #3 -- Soul Spark then jump on Birdie; go for the guard break. Opinions vary on Birdie's anti-air moves. Some people say they're pretty good, especially against unwary players who don't recover in the air properly after being hit with Birdie's crouching FP. His standing FP is also pretty painful with the right timing. I suggest trying a jump-in SK/FK to see if your opponent can use Birdie's anti-air move properly. If not, then follow with crouching JP -> crouching FK -> Soul Spark/JP Soul Spiral. Repeat. Crossing-up Birdie also works well, as he has no wake-up anti-air. If your opponent is good with Birdie's anti-air moves, then I suggest creating some distance between him and Rose by jumping backward, then throw a JP Soul Spark, followed up with a jump-in attack and combo. Tip #3.1 -- Jumping back Don't get too predictable with this tactic. Some Birdie players activate the Bull Revenger as you are about to land from a jump. Tip #4 -- Birdie's got Rose cornered with her guard about to crash If Rose is cornered with her guard meter flashing, then you can try using the FP Soul Throw to get behind Birdie. Birdie is not a combo machine, and the most Birdie players only do is a crouching RK. The various Chain attacks will likely miss and, for some reason, Birdie players don't use The Birdie. Tip #5 -- Don't stick your foot out unless you're sure to hit. The computer is very good at doing this -- if you do a crouching kick and miss, Birdie slams his fists down on Rose' legs as she recovers. I haven't met anyone who can do this consistently, but you might, so don't do a crouching FK/RK unneccesarily. Tip #6 -- Watch the Bull Head and Bull Horn These two moves look almost exactly alike. Birdie leans back then charges with his head. Note that while Birdie is leaning back he gains a brief moment of invulnerability. Supposedly, these moves can go through fireballs, but I haven't met anyone who can do this at all (in SFZ3). The computer is also very good at using the Bull Head/Horn against jumping opponents, but I have yet to see a human player do this well. If you block the Bull Head (the quick, short invulnerability, slow-recovering version), immediately counter-attack. Use the JP. Avoid the temptation of jumping back, or you'll end up eating a FP. If you block the Bull Horn (longer period of invulnerability, better recovery), _immediately_ JP back. If you hesitate then you'll be slammed by the Murderer/Bandit Chain (see tip #6). Remember: the Bull Horn has a slower, slightly invulnerable startup than the Bull Head. Some of Rose' attacks may simply go through Birdie. Block and counter-attacks instead of trying to hit Birdie out of it. Birdie players will try to "tick" when using the Murderer/Bandit Chain. Birdie will do a JP/SK or a Bull Head/Horn, followed by the Murderer/Bandit Chain if Rose just blocks, or a FP if Rose tries to jump away. In order to avoid this set-up, immediately do crouching JPs the moment you block a JP/SK/Bull Head/Horn from Birdie. In closing: Definitely a weak character, Birdie isn't an opponent you'll meet often. Play defensively and go easy on the Soul Spark (you can abuse it later when his Super Combo Meter has been depeleted). * Rose Vs. Blanka * Threat - moderate to high Common -ism - X/Z (X is better, but Z appeals to turtles simply because of the air-block) Moves of note - Rolling Attack (horizontal and vertical) - Ground Shave Roll (anti-air Super Combo) - jumping FP/FK/RK (all air-to-ground attacks) Blanka is a very irritating character to fight against. All he does roll, jump at you with a FP/FK, then jump backwards in a corner after inflicting some damage. I've heard several suggestions on how to deal with Blanka, most of which are useless unless you can do "Reversal" moves consistently. A lot of beginners love Blanka because it allows them to kick the living daylights out of intermediate players. Tip #1 -- General Blanka strategy: go for the aerial battle and attack early. This goes against several other FAQ's regarding Blanka and Rose. Most players suggest that Rose should stay on the ground and do a crouching FP -> Soul Throw juggle against a jumping Blanka. This works fine, but never expect the crouching FP -> Soul Throw juggle to work more than twice against any given player. What I suggest is to meet Blanka in the air with a jumping FP/FK/RK. Timing is everything. Attack before Blanka attacks, and Rose will win in most exchanges. The idea here is to prevent Blanka from reaching the highest point of his jump (Blanka jumps faster and higher than almost all the other characters). Tip #2 -- Jump on a grounded Blanka (and other strategies) There is only one situation when its safe to jump on a grounded Blanka -- while he's getting up. Blanka's anti-air moves (the Vertical Roll, the standing FP/RK) are anticipatory, not reactionary. What this means is that his anti-air moves are great when he's up standing or "charging" down and his opponent is high in the air. However, once you're on your way down there isn't much he can do except block or jump back (or do a Ground Shave Roll, which isn't that damaging). If you manage to knock Blanka down, go for the cross-up (to nullify the "charge" on his Horizontal Rolling Attack) with a jumping FK, followed by the most devastating combo you can think of if the jump attack hits (usually a crouching FP -> level 3 Aura Soul Throw) or a crouching JP -> crouching SP -> Soul Spark to chip away at the guard meter. If he manages to block your attacks, go on the defensive. Don't move -- just block. Blanka will then : a) jump towards you with a FP b) jump away c) walk backwards d) not move (he's charging up) e) attack (not likely, though) If he jumps toward you, respond with a crouching FP -> Soul Throw Juggle (if he's right on top of you). If you think that you're in a poor position and that the FP will trade hits, go for the aerial battle instead (see tip #1). If Blanka jumps away, then follow with a jumping SK/FK. Upon landing, do a crouching JP, which will stop whatever dreams of retaliation he has. If the JP connects or is blocked, follow with a crouching SP -> Soul Spark. Don't count on the JP connecting, though. Chances are, Blanka will simply jump back again after blocking your jumping attack. If the JP doesn't connect, don't move -- just block and wait for his next move. If Blanka walks backward, then follow with a jumping SK/FK. Chances are, he'll jump. If he jumps back, he'll be beyond Rose' range of attacks. If he blocks, do a crouching JP -> crouching SP -> Soul Spark or, better yet, a throw (I whole-heartedly support this cheap move against Blanka). Why not a stronger attack when going after a Blanka walking/jumping backward ? Your intention here is not to inflict massive damage but to outprioritize him in case he's thinking of trying to trade hits. If Blanka is just sitting there and doesn't move neither should you. He's charging up a Vertical Rolling Attack and Rose can't do squat about this. If Blanka's on the ground and attacking, simply block. His ground-based attacks are all of his crouching kicks and crouching punches (except for the crouching FP, which is unpredictable). All of these moves have good priority, and most can be used in a combo into his Specials, so trading hits is not an option. Simply block all of these attacks until you're out of range. If however, your guard meter is flashing, you can try to jump back and stick out a SK/FK, which may stop the Horizontal Rolling Attack he's been charging up or that jumping FP punch he'll try to use. Tip #3 -- Dealing with that damn roll Blanka's Horizontal Rolling Attack is hard to stop consistenly. Sure, any jab will stop it, but who are we kidding ? One option in preventing that damn attack is to use a standing FP/RK as a reveral after blocking the ball. This is as hard as hell, but if you manage to pull this off twice or thrice, he'll hesistate before rolling again. Another option would be to jump back and using a SK/FK. This, however, trades hits, and Blanka inflicts more damage. Don't even try using the Soul Spark and Soul Spiral unless you can use these moves as reversals consistently. Tip #4 -- Moves that don't work against Blanka These moves should be avoided unless you're sure they're going to hit or at least be blocked: - all standing punches - crouching FP/FK/RK - Soul Spiral (all strengths) - Aura Soul Spark (all levels) In closing: Pick Honda. Pick Zangief. Pick Blanka, so you can see who gets annoyed first. * Rose Vs. Cammy/Juli/Juni (CJJ) * Threat - moderate to high Common -ism - Z (V for experts, but they're few and far between) Moves of note - standing SK/FK/RK, crouching FP (pokes) - jumping kicks (rather long-ranged) - various throws (since CJJ has terrific ground speed, expect her to weave in and out then throw) - Spiral Arrow (CJJ twists her body feet first toward her opponent; recovery time mainly depends on how "deep" she lands the attack -- if only the tip of her feet touch Rose, she'll recover fast; Juli does not have this move, but instead has "Sniping Arrow", where she thrusts forward at about chest level; extremely poor recovery time) - Cannon Spike (a rising kick; anti-air) - Dive Bomb (also known as "Cannon Strike"; Cammy kicks downward; fast as hell) - Hooligan Roll (CJJ spins in the air to be followed by throw or a low slide; the throw is hard to stop; Juli does not have this move) - Killer Bee Assault (also known as "Phantom Layette"; Cammy's level 3 Super Combo where she juggles her opponent across the screen) These three characters are similar enough to be grouped into one. All their normals are practically the same. Cammy is the most likely to be used. Juni is more powerful (IMHO), but is harder to use (because she's a charge character). Juli is weaker than the two, so don't expect to see her much. Tip #1 -- Aerial matters In the air, CJJ's moves are comparable to Rose'. Rose, however, is at an advantage because her moves can combo into lots of nasty things after an aerial attack, while CJJ's can't. Be aggresive with Rose' various linking and 2-in-1 moves. Sample pattern: aerial attack -> 2 ground attacks -> Soul Spark/cross-up -> repeat. Watch the cross-up, though. CJJ is pretty small and fast and may simply walk underneath it. Juni can flat-out teleport away. If your CJJ opponent likes to jump with a SK/RK then try meeting her in the air a couple of times with a jumping FK to see if her timing is good. If you exchange hits or you get snuffed then go for the ground battle (see tip #2). If you win the exchange consitently then, by all means, keep on meeting her in the air. Don't try to stop CJJ's jumping SK/RK if you're on the ground. Just block and counter-attack. A level 2 Aura Soul Throw works well against an aerial CJJ, but I don't recommend it -- save your Super Combo meter for a level 3 Aura Soul Throw. Note: the better the CJJ player, the less likely he'll resort to jumping attacks. The best CJJ players I've seen are strictly pokers and will jump only when they're feeling confident or an extraodinary opportunity presents itself. Tip #2 -- General strategies 2; ground battle Sample CJJ poking pattern: weave in and out -> standing RK/crouching FK. The more daring players will weave in just within your attack range, pause, then throw you after a missed attack. If you jump at her, she'll likely: a) walk back then attack as you land (her version of "Neutral Zone"); b) Cannon Spike (Cammy and Juli only, and only if you jumped from an unfavorable distance); c) jump back (if her guard meter is flashing). First, do not back away from CJJ if you have a choice. You do not want to be cornered. Try to keep the battle mid-screen (or with CJJ's back to the wall). Poke back at CJJ with crouching SP/FK then walk a bit forward ("Creeping Rose"). Rose may be at a slight disadvantage, as CJJ's standing RK will inflict more damage than Rose can if you exchange hits. If you ever get knocked down in an exchange, regain ground with the forward ground roll. Avoid the temptation of using the crouching RK and Soul Spiral, or a Soul Spark outside of a combo. That being said, try to abuse your crouching FK -> Soul Spark as much as possible. The only time to back away from CJJ is when your guard meter is flashing, and even then, poke back as you try to get away. If you block a crouching RK from CJJ, immediately counter-attack. This is not a move you'll see from expert players. Watch out for the occasionaly Spiral Arrow fake (basically, Cammy/Juni will try a SK Spiral Arrow, then do a Super Combo if you try to counter-attack). The only safe distance to jump at CJJ is as a cross-up (or see tip #5). Any other time, try to hit with only the tip of Rose's foot (_not_ deep). Aside from the pattern mentioned in tip #1, you can occasionally follow your aerial attack with the Soul-piette. Pattern: jumping FK -> Tip #3 -- The Hooligan Roll and Killer Bee Assault The Hooligan Roll is extremely irritating. Strictly speaking, any attack will stop it. Realistically, you have to react _very_ fast in order to avoid it. I've seen in beat the Dragon Punch even during the startup animation (which is supposed to be invulnerable). Once the Hooligan Roll is on the downward spin, the only way it will miss is if your opponent made a mistake in its execution in the first place (such as wrong range or mistimed button press). The only way to stop it is with a Super Combo. Lesson: once you see Cammy start to spin up, attack with a Super Combo, FP, or Soul-piette. Jumping away doesn't always work. Cammy has a level 3 Super Combo, the Killer Bee Assault, where Cammy rolls into the air, then bounces off the wall towards her opponent. The Killer Bee Assault inflicts around 5x more damage than the Cannonball Leap, but can be blocked if you're on the ground. It _must_ be blocked, as I have yet to see a move that can stop it. Unforunately, the initial animation for the Killer Bee Assualt and the Cannonball Leap can look the same. If you aren't careful, you might try to attack Cammy while she rolls in the air, thinking that she'll do a Cannonball Leap. The Killer Bee Assault has two uses: a) off the bat, for no reason at all, hoping to hit you (beginners only); b) when you try a Soul Spark. Lesson: Cammy moves a lot, and if she's crouching on the ground away from you, then assume that she's "charging" up for the Killer Bee Assault -- once you see her roll from such a distance block instead of attacking. Lesson: if Cammy's charging down-back at a distance away from you, do _not_ throw a Soul Spark unless in a combo. Lesson: be aggresive and never let Cammy get the time to charge down. Tip #4 -- V-ism Cammy V-ism Cammy has her Dive Bomb, which is insanely fast with matching priority. Only a Level 2/3 Aura Sould Throw can stop it reliably. If your opponent start to abuse this, try to jump straight up and hit her while she's below you. As with all V-ism characters, CJJ can activate her VC in order to avoid an anti-air attack, then whack Rose. As such, if CJJ is in the air on her way down just block her attack or just jump away. CJJ's main VCs, however, are anti-air. Keep this in mind when jumping on her. Tip #5 -- Juni Juni is a "charge" character, radically different in playing style to Cammy and Juli. She tends to move less, since she's charging. She also pokes less, and may even play "turtle". Juni is also more likely to throw, particulary with her version of the Spinning Piledriver and Hooligan Roll. If Juni is up and walking, attack from the air. She can't use her Cannon Spike, but do watch out for her anti-air normal attacks. Use Rose' SK/FK. A Juni walking is up to something (most likely to throw) and it's best to deprive her of options by going aggresive. In closing: Play aggresively. Try to be where she is. Air-to-air. Ground-to- ground. Use the Soul Spark only from long ranges or in a combo. Never let her get a breather to use the Hooligan Roll. Poke back at her if she gets into the poking game. * Charlie/Nash (also his clone, Guile, on the PSX) * Threat - low Common -ism - Z (but V is _way_ better) Moves of note: - standing JP/FP (anti-air ?) - Rolling Sabot (a hop kick that must be blocked standing) - Sonic Boom (Charlie/Guile spinning projectile) - crouching FP (anti-air, but only when he's being aggresive) - Sommersault (err... a sommersault; primarily anti-air, but isn't too good at that; can be used against a grounded character, but isn't too good at that either; horrifically low priority) - Sommersault Justice (Super Combo version of the Sommersault) Charlie isn't seeing much action in SFZ3. He is weaker here than SFZ2. Anyway, if you do happen to meet Charlie or Guile (PSX only), here are some tips which apply to both of them. Tip #1 -- Assesing Charlie Check if your opponent is trigger-happy with the Somersault. Jump on a crouching Charlie, simply block, then see what anti-air he tries. If he does the Somersault and you air-block it, you can be assured that you're fighting a beginner and you can play much more aggresively. If he Somersaults and you get hit or if he does the Somersault Justice then he's at least an intermediate player. Don't jump on him again if he's charged up. Reassess him again later. If he jumps back, then he's a turtler, possibly experienced, but too afraid of Rose. Play aggresively. If he does a funky anti-air (such as a standing JP/FP) and it looks like he knows what he's doing, he's an expert (but even then Charlie is still meat against Rose). In any case, remember that Rose can outpriotize all of Charlie's anti- air. The next time you jump on him make sure you attack with a SK/FK. Tip #2 -- Annoy your opponent with the Soul Reflect; jumping Charlie will throw a Sonic Boom at Rose then will either: a) walk/run behind it then attack as you block the it Boom; or b) charge for another one. Only beginners will stick to the second option for long. Use Rose' Soul Reflect extensively against the Sonic Boom. In paricular, use the JP version in order to charge up. If Rose' Super Meter is charged up, use the SP version in order to reflect the Sonic Boom horizontally. The objective of this is not to hit your opponent with the Sonic Boom, but to lure you opponent in the air... Only the worst players will get hit by a returning Sonic Boom from a FP version of the Soul Reflect, but can try it anyway. If your opponent goes for the first option (attack behind the Sonic Boom), jump on Charlie with a SK/FK (see tip #3). Tip #3 -- Use that Aura Soul Throw If Charlie jumps toward you, pull off an Aura Soul Throw (level 1/2 if he's right on top of Rose, level 3 if he's a away a bit). Another way of effectively using the level 3 Aura Soul Throw is to take advantage of Charlie's range. Lure Charlie into kicking with his crouching FK/RK by using a SK Soul Spiral (see also tip #3). The SK Soul Spiral, when used at a correct distance, will make Rose recover outside the range of Charlie's kicks. Some players will try to kick anyway, or even use a Sonic Boom, Sonic Break, or Crossfire Blitz. Make them pay for their mistake by doing a level 3 Aura Soul Throw and watch their jaws drop as your attack goes through theirs. Tip #4 -- Go for the guard crash/tick You can go for the guard crash when fighting Charlie. You can either throw Soul Sparks at Charlie (not advised unless you are far away) and cause him to jump, or wait for him to throw a Sonic Boom. You then do a jumping FK (which has higher priority against nearly all of Charlie's attacks), followed by crouching JP -> crouching FK -> crouching RK/SK Soul Spiral/Soul Spark. Or you can always throw Charlie the moment he blocks the jumping FK (cheap, but sometimes this is the only way to win against Charlie "turtles"). Tip #5 -- Distance games. Charlie can be difficult to deal with if you are cornered. Jump, and he'll try to blast you with a crouching FP, Somersault, or Somersault Justice. Be defensive and he'll feed you Sonic Boom and crouching FK/RK. Charlie can also deliver nasty combos after a guard crash. Rose' attacks have a higher priority then Charlie's, so she has several things to get out of a corner, some of which aren't pretty. I'll discuss these options by range: a) Charlie far (beyond the range of Rose' crouching RK). This should be easy. As I've said, Rose has a higher priority than Charlie. At this range, Charlie's anti-air attacks are next to worthless against Rose. Simply do jumping SK/FK. These moves have a higher priority than the crouching FP and the Somersault, but beware the Somersault Justice. If your opponent is capable of doing the Somersault Justice consistently, don't sweat it -- just take the damage and press on. Also, check to see if you're opponent is Somersault-happy. The Somersault can be airblocked so use this to your advantage. Jump at Charlie, airblock the Somersault, land and deliver a combo. Fake your opponent. Do quick moves that you know won't hit your opponent, but may make him think that you are open to attack. Basically, you can do any move safely except FP and RK, and the various Specials and Super Combos. JP to your heart's delight. If you're feeling brave, you can try a Soul Spark or a Soul-piette, but I wouldn't recommend it against quick players. The moment Charlie stands up or throws a Sonic Boom, punish him (see tip #3 and tip #4). b) Charlie at medium range (about the range betwen Rose' crouching SP and crouching FK). Things are a bit more complicated. At this range Charlie is at his best. Charlie will not play defensively at this range and will throw every technique he knows. The Sonic Boom is difficult to deflect this close, and Charlie's crouching FP can be used with impunity to knock down jumping opponents. Charlie players also tend to walk forward and do a crouching attack right after the Sonic Boom. Get away. This is my advice. Get some distance between you. Use a crouching SP/FK -> Soul Spark if necessary. Although Rose' attacks have better priority than Charlie at this range, the Sonic Boom is simply too fast, and his crouching FP/RK inflict more than acceptable damage. Jumping over a Sonic boom will likely have you landing behind Charlie with you back to him, defenseless, at close range (this isn't such a bad thing though, see below). You can try a FK as you jump, in the hope of a cross-up, followed by a combo. c) Charlie close (about jab distance). Charlie's predictable, but deadly. At this range, the typical Charlie combo is crouching JP -> crouching SK -> Sonic Boom -> crouching FK/RK. All Rose can do here is block, but you may try to stuff Charlie's crouching RK with an attack of your own. It goes without saying that your best bet to intercept his attack is with a level 3 Aura Soul Throw, but since this isn't always possible I suggest a crouching FK, but this may trade hits (a bad thing because you'll be knocked down and Charlie inflicts more damage). Watch for throws. The moment Charlie pauses after a JP/SK he will either throw or he is faking you out, hoping you will expect a throw and make a mistake. Super Combos won't help much in this case, since he's expecting it. I suggest doing a crouching SP/FK -> Soul Spark, but for surprise you can try a Soul Reflect. When your guard is about to crash you can try the Zero Counter, which will place Rose behind Charlie (and out of a corner). The Zero Counter, however, is rather painful to use, but then again it's better than to have you guard broken by Charlie. The most extreme way to get away from Charlie at close range is to use the FP Soul Throw. The FP Soul Throw is quick and unlikely to be intercepted on the way up, and if you're lucky, they'll try a Somersault and miss. Charlie players will wait for Rose to come down and then unleash a combo. Fortunately for Rose, the FP Soul Throw has an angle that will make her land behind Charlie, effectively ruining most of his attacks. The deadliest combo Charlie can do at this point is a crouching SP -> Somersault (which is actually a good deal). Tip #6 -- V-ism Charlie V-ism Charlie, IMHO, is his most powerful -ism, but despite this he's still a weak character. He has one main VC -- repeated Sommersaults. He has two methods of landing this. a) Throw Threat. Works best in corners. Charlie will throw a Sonic Boom, walk behind it (as if to throw you if you block the boom), activate the VC if you try anything, then proceed to bash Rose around. If you don't move, you _will_ be thrown. The best way to deal with is is to jump back and air-block. Why not jump forward or up ? Because Charlie might try a Regular Move (as anti-air) prior to the Sommersault juggle. This isn't very reliable, but it might work if you get careless. b) As anti-air. Works anywhere. When you're coming down from the air, Charlie will activate the VC then use the Sommersault juggle. This method does not work well, fortunately for Rose. The Sommersault can be air-blocked, and any of Rose' attacks can outprioritize it, even with the VC's invulnerability time. Just jump attack at him even when his Super Combo Meter is charged up. In closing: Rose rules the air. If Charlie throws a Sonic Boom, jump and attack. If he walks forward, jump and attack. In fact, if your opponent is a beginner you can pretty much jump and attack all you want. * Rose Vs. Chun Li * Threat - moderate Common -ism - X/Z (I haven't seen V) Moves of note: - all aerial attaks - crouching RK (with her hand on the floor Chun Li kicks out to about thigh level; will outprioritize or trade hits with almost any normal ground attack Rose can make) - Kikou Ken (her fireball; make her pay if she uses this;`Z/V-ism only) - Sen'en Shuu (she does a split, flips forward, then hits with her leg; must be blocked standing) - Kaku Kyaku Raku (Chun Li flips forward high in the air then knees her opponets back of the head; looks like a cross-up, but it's not; must be blocked standing) - Tenshou Kyaku (Chun Li spins up in the air kicking; anti-air) - Hazan Tensou Kyaku (Z-ism only; Super Combo version of the Tenshou Kyaku) - Senretsu Kyaku (Super Combo where Chun Li charges with kicks) - Spinning Bird Kick (Chun Li flips upside down then twirls; lots of different uses, but not very effective in any of them) There are a _lot less_ players of Chun Li these days. Tip #1 -- Watch that Sen'en Shuu and Kaku Kyaku Raku I start off my Chun Li tips with a warning: the level 3 Aura Soul Throw _does not_ work well against the Sen'en Shuu. Against most other opponents, the level 3 Aura Soul Throw will stop whatever they're doing. The level 3 Aura Soul Throw will go through Chun Li instead of stopping her. Save your Super Combo meter for level 1/2 Aura Soul Throw against Chun Li jumping. I've found that the best way to stop the Sen'en Shuu is to do a crouching FK. The Sene'en Shuu has good recovery so blocking then counter-attacking is not recommended. Rose is hard-pressed to stop the Kaku Kyaku Raku. It has good priority and the angle makes it hard to hit. It has good recovery and hard to counter-attack against. Visually, it looks like Chun Li is attacking from behind, so blocking is sometimes confusing (since it also must be blocked standing), and walking forward (trying to get underneath and past it) is a no-no. This move has two weaknesses. First, it's slow as hell. Second, the effective range is very short. Keep Chun Li at poking range of Rose' kicks and you shouldn't see much of this move. Giving your opponent no opportunity to use the Kaku Kyaku Raku is much easier than trying to deal with it. Tip #2 -- Chun Li in the air Chun Li has about the same priority as Rose in the air, but Chun Li deals a bit more damage. Lesson: don't meet Chun Li in the air. Chun Li air-to-ground is also quite strong. Block Chun Li (especially X-ism Chun Li) if she's attacking from the air then concentrate on what she'll do next (see tip #4). Rose' crouching FP will trade hits with most of Chun Li's aerial attacks, so I don't recommend it. Instead, try to anticipate (or lure into) Chun Li's next jump (which is why I suggest blocking first -- it lures your opponent into overconfidence) then nail her with an level 1 Aura Soul Throw. This works better on Chun Li than other characters because she jumps very high. Tip #3 -- Go for the poking game; Chun Li getting closer Try to keep Chun Li at about the tip of Rose' crouching FK then poke away. Rose can combo her Soul Spark off the crouching FK (Chun Li can only combo off her close-ranged attacks), so you can go for crouching FK -> Soul Spark. You have to watch out for a couple of things, though. First, Chun Li's crouching RK will 100% outprioritize almost anything Rose can dish out at this range. Only the rather slow startup and recovery of this move will deter Chun Li from it, and if you become predictable it certainly will nail Rose. Second, beware of poking at Chun Li if she's just sitting there or backing away. You might meet a Senretsu Kyaku as Rose sticks out her foot. Tip #3.1 Basic poking pattern against Chun Li Do a couple of crouching FK (into a Soul Spark if possible) then stop -> back off a bit/wait for Chun Li to move forward -> repeat. If Chun Li walks backward, follow on the ground cautiously (away from her crouching RK range) and expect her to jump or do a crouching attack. Nail her with a level 1 Aura Soul Throw if she jumps. If she does a crouching attack (other than a crouching RK, which should miss -- remember: follow her only outside of its range), poke back with a RK/crouching FK. If she does a crouching RK or you miss the previouus RK/crouching FK, jump in and attack with an SK or FK or just airblock. Repeat entire process. The reason for the rather cautious approach against a retreating Chun Li is the Senretsu Kyaku. You can be a lot more aggressive once Chun Li's Super Combo meter is depleted. Chun Li's mind games come into play if she's within jabbing distance. She will come into this range by either jumping into it (with an aerial attack, see tip #2), with a blocked Senretsu Kyaku (or other bungled up move), or by walking into it. You do not want Chun Li here. Chun Li has too many tricks up her sleeve at this range. Typical pattern when blocked from the air: crouching JP -> crouching SK -> Kikou Ken (mid screen only)/Sen'en Shuu/throw/crouching FK/RK/Kaku Kyaku Raku. As you can see, she has an arsenal of attacks that can hit from many directions, not one of which Rose can reliably stop (except for the throw, which Rose can jab against; see also Tip #1). You have to weather the attacks out and block appropriately. Nail Chun Li in the air next time. If you blocked a Senretsu Kyaku, bear in mind that this move has good recovery, and you might end up in a Hazan Tenshou Kyaku if you try to attack while Chun Li's recovering. Remember: check out Chun Li's Super Combo meter, and if you do decide to attack right after the Senretsu Kyaku, use a combo that starts with a quick attack (such as crouching SK). Tip #4 -- Chun Li still has anti-air ! Because Chun Li's Tenshou Kyaku has been limited in priority, players of SFZ3 tend to forget that she still has it and try aggressively for the cross-up. This can be mistake, particularly against a prone Chun Li. As with all charge anti-air, jumping on Chun Li is best when she's up an walking instead of when she's getting up from the ground. Tip #5 -- Watch for mistakes Be aware that Chun Li players can make fatal mistakes, particularly those expecting her to perform as well as she did in SFZ2. Nail Chun Li if she tries any of the following. Crouching JP/SK -> crouching FK -> Special. This does not work well in SFZ3. Watch your opponent if he tries to link these moves together. Chun Li will pause between these moves, then try to jump away. You can hit her between moves, or jump after her with a SK/FK. Tenshou Kyaku as anti-air. Not as reliable as SFZ2. Jump on a crouching Chun Li and air-block. If Chun Li insists on using the Tenshou Kyaku, make her pay. Kouhou Kaiten Kyaku. Chun Li kicks forward, hits twice, then flips backward. This might work against other characters. Against Rose, this is an invitation to be hit. Missed Kaku Kyaku Raku. Do _not_ use a crouching attack if Chun Li misses this attack, as it can actually still hit low limbs. Whip out a standing FP. Blocked Yousou Kyaku. Chun Li jumps and stamps her heel on her opponent. This move is actually pretty useful (if timed properly). If you block it, pause a bit, then nail Chun Li as she sails away. Kikou Ken outside of a combo. If Chun Li snaps a fireball, jump over it and proceed to bash her around. She's no ARK, and is really left vulnerable if she uses the Kikou Ken on its own. Tip #6 -- -ism specifics Tip #6.1 -- X-ism X-ism Chun li plays radically different from Chun Li from SFZ1/2 and Z/V-ism. It's almost like fighting a completely different character. No fireball, no airblock, and reversal-only Tenshou Kyaku means she's less likely to attempt to turtle, and more likely to make full use of her speed, priority and damage. She's also less "tricky", as the lack of She'en Shuu means you can crouch-block without being afraid of being nailed by a fast top-down move. The primary strategy of X-ism Chun Li would be to use superior ground speed to weave in and out of most of your attacks, then snap out an occasional crouching RK, or Senretsu Kyaku if you make a big enough mistake. She won't jump around much, and will only do so if she's feeling confident. You can jump on her, just make sure of two things: a) you'll land an attack, b) don't go for a cross-up. These two precautions are all born out of her ground speed. The first one is important because Chun Li's lack of reliable anti-air. She will always keep a certain distance. If you jump on Chun Li from a range that won't land any of your attacks (such as from a half-screen distance away), you can count on Chun Li to simply walk a bit backward then nail Rose with a crouching RK as she land. The second precaution is important if you jump from a distance too close. Chun Li can run underneath Rose as she jumps overhead then throw her as she lands. Tip #6.1.1 -- Crouching RK Chun Li's crouching RK has amazing priority and damage. With he walking speed, this is her primary poke. Rose will have a hard time trying to out-poke this. As such, on a ground-to- ground battle, Chun Li has the upper hand. The Spinning Bird Kick ("SBK") can be tricky to deal with. It has two basic uses. It can be used as anti-air that hits up to three times. Used in this manner, the SBK has very low priority and almost any move will stop it. Unfortunately, the SBK can hit up to three times if you miss, inflicting massive damage. The SBK is also quite nasty if you manage to air-block it. It can juggle an air-blocking character for up to 7 hits, severely depleting the Guard Meter (not to mention the psychological effect of not being able to move while being juggled). Lesson: when jumping on Chun Li, always stick out an attack. Second, the SBK can be used occasionally against a ground opponent, hoping to create confusion. In this case, treat the SBK like ARK's Hurricane kick -- start doing crouching JP's as Chun Li spins, then when Chun Li jerks back after being hit by the jab do a level 3 Aura Soul Throw. Tip #6.2 Z-ism Most of the previous tips (#1 to #5) assume a Z-ism Chun Li unless mentioned otherwise. Z-ism Chun Li is also a turtler supreme. Turtler aren't renown for their skill and if your opponent gets into this (particularly the jump-in-a-corner- stick-out-a-foot type) make her pay by playing aggressively, particularly in the air. Tip #6.3 V-ism Also a turtler, but its more likely that you'll be facing an _expert_ turtler. In all honesty, I haven't found a good Chun Li V-ism player, and when I try to play as V-ism Chun Li the best combo I can come up with is a repeated Kikou Ken against a cornered opponent. Please mail me for more V-ism Chun Li tactics and tactics to be used against her. In closing: With her priority and combo ability severely decreased from SFZ2, Chun-li is often reduced to relying on tricky attacks (Z/V-ism) or simply out-manuevering/out-poking her opponent (X-ism). Z/V-ism can be dealt with by being familiar with which attacks does what, then poking at her. X-ism is harder to poke at, * Rose Vs. Cody * Threat - low Common -ism - V (V is the most common, but isn't that useful against Rose; Z with a player who knows Rose will kick Cody's butt under V; I think he's best at X) Moves of Note - jumping RK (good aerial attack) - jumping FK (cross-up aerial attack) - Bad Stone (Cody picks up a stone, then throws it) - Ruffian Kick (he lunges forward with a high, mid, or low kick; the high kick can be used as anti-air or juggling; the low kick is usually for combos; the mid kick for juggles) - Crack Kick (a hop kick forward; covers a wide area and has decent speed and priority; misses crouching characters) - Criminal Upper (Cody does an uppercut and a small tornado appears; mainly for combos, but can be used as anti-air; juggles) - Dead End Irony (Cody lunges with a kick, followed by more kicks; Z-ism only) - Final Destruction (Cody can walk around in any direction and his attacks "auto-combo") - Dodge (Cody dodges mid-section attacks instead of blocking; V-ism only) Cody can deliver some devastating combos. That's about it. Tip #1 -- Air attack Attack Cody from the air aggresively, but not carelessly. Cody has a number of damaging anti-air moves, such as his high Ruffian Kick, Criminal Upper, RK, and crouching FP. They're all pretty slow, and Rose can out-prioritize all of them. Tip #2 -- Cody from the air Air-to-air, Rose has a definite advantage. Rose can out-prioritize anything Cody can use. Not only that, Cody jumping kicks have odd timings. Make Cody pay if you meet in the air. Air-to-ground is another matter. Aside from the the standard jumping FP, Cody's jumping RK is faster and reaches lower than most aerial moves, and is therefore harder to stop. Rose can't do much about it once it comes out, so you must either hit Cody _before_ her uses the move, or just block it. If your opponent was trying to use the jumping RK as a bait (in case you were trying to do an anti-air), he'll likely be unable to combo properly, so once he lands do crouching attacks and wat out his guard meter. Tip #3 -- Cody on the ground Cody is better on the ground than he's in the air (particularly in V-ism), so you can expect to fight a lot of ground battles. First off, Cody has _no_ top-down moves. You can crouch all day long and his only recourse would be an aerial attack, to throw, or to try his luck with the Bad Stone. Tip #3.1 -- The Bad Stone (not only is it "bad"... in fact, it down right sucks) The Bad Stone isn't a great move. Sure, it's timing can be altered (theoretically giving it a lot of uses), but it's so slow, can potentially completely miss, and inflicts smaller damage than most projectiles. The Bad Stone can't be Soul Reflected. The stone will bounce off Rose' shawl (any attack meeting the stone will stop it), but Rose will not gain any Super Combo meter nor will the stone return back to Cody. If Cody attempts the Bad Stone from a great distance away, you can try to snap out an FP Soul Spark in response. With luck, the Soul Spark will hit but the Bad Stone will miss. Worst case scenario: both Rose and Cody will be hit. Rose, however, can inflict more damage. Resist the urge to jump at Cody when he reaches down to pick up a stone. The Bad Stone arcs upward, and can hit Rose as she jumps. Good Cody players has the timing to this down pat. What you _can_ do is to whip out a single attack (such as a FP, RK, crouching RK, or level 3 Aura Soul Throw) if you're within range. The principle is the same as firing a Soul Spark at the stone -- Rose will inflict more damage than the stone. Finally, the Bad Stone can be used to _start_ a combo. This is very hard to do, so don't worry about it much. While you're crouching there you should stick out Rose' feet and poke at Cody. Cody's attacks are slow, short-ranged, and have lower priority than Rose'. Use the crouching SP/SK/FK with impunity, but skip the crouching RK (which will tempt Cody to jump). You can mix this up with the Soul Spark (but see tip #4.1) Tip #3.2 -- The Crack Kick While keeping a crouching position guarantees immunity from the Crack Kick, it can still be used to go over Rose' legs. Cody can do the Crack Kick as Rose does a crouching kick (effectively nullifying Rose' attack as well as bringing Cody closer), then attack again (such as with a Super or VC) if you try to counter-attack the Crack Kick. The Crack Kick has numerous other uses, which I won't go into detail since all of them can be avoided by simply crouching. Tip #4 -- -ism specifics Tip #4.1 -- V-ism Cody Forget the Soul Spark and Soul Spiral. Even when used in combos, V-ism Cody can still sometimes dodge them and make you pay. Rely on linking Rose various crouching kicks and go for the guard crash. That being said, save your Super Combo meter for a level 3 Aura Soul Throw. As with all midsection move against V-ism Cody, don't gamble. Use it when your _sure_ to hit, such as during a guard crash. Cody's taunt is said to be invulnerable, but I haven't seen anyone use this. Tip #4.2 -- Z-ism Cody Z-ism Cody greatest strength, IMHO, is in his Dead End Irony. It has just enough invulnerability and range to make it a threat against over-enthusiastic players, particularly in conjunction with a Crack Kick (see Tip #3.2). Of the three -isms, play the most conservatively against Z-ism. Tip #4.3 -- X-ism Cody You can be much more aggressive in poking against X-ism Cody than Z/X-ism. His Super Combo (the Final Destruction) is hard to do and almost cannot be used to surprise an opponent (such as in Tip #3.2). However, be aware that the Final Destruction _can_ inflict massive damage under an expert's hands. Finally, X-ism Cody's Bad Stone is slightly more dangerous due to it's increased damage, so some of the things I suggested in Tip #3.1 may not be applicable. In closing: Turtle and poke. Cody can't do much against Rose when she's crouching, and he can't deal with her kicks either. * Rose Vs. Dan * Threat - low Common -ism - Z (does it _really_ matter ?) Moves of note - crouching SP (Dan sticks out his open hand low; high priority, and, strangely enough, useful as anti-air) - crouching RK (his sweep that has _isanse_ priority) If you're feeling paranoid, treat Dan like scaled-down Akuma/Ryu/Ken. Seriously, though, Dan can be quite a danger if underestimated. In particular, Dan's SP is deceptively powerful, both against a grounded opponent and as an anti-air move. I also believe that Dan's crouching RK has a higher priority than Akuma/Ryu/Ken's, but no agrees with me. Finally, his repeated Fireball VC inflicts more damage the Ryu's, so avoid corners like crazy. * Rose Vs. Dhalsim * Threat - high Common -ism - X (V has its share of proponents, but IMHO X is so much deadlier) Moves of note - Yoga Fire (Dhalsim spits out a ball of fire) - Yoga Flame (Dhalsim breathes a huge ball of fire; fast recovery if blocked; used primarily against characters just getting up, as anti-air, and as poking deterrent) - Drill Zutsuki (Dhalsim jumps in the air then spins downward headfirst; remarkably hard to counter and can be used to get out of corners) - Drill Kick (like the Drill Zutsuki, but Dhalsim goes feet first) - FP/crouching FP (Dhalsim stretches out his fists; very long range; used as a poke, as anti-air, and as a counter) - FK/RK (Dhalsim kicks out far; long range; used primarily as anti-air but occasionally as a poke against standing characters) - Slide (Dhalsim slides under fireball; varying speeds, with the fast ones combo-able; used primarily as anti-fireball) - standing JP (Dhalsim chops downward; the "Jab of Doom"; nearly unbeatable anti-air move) This incarnation of Dhalsim is his most powerful for a long time, and I've seen tempers flare because of frustration when fighting him. Personally, I only use Dhalsim only if I challenge or if I feel like showing off, as I can't beat the Charlie/Nash CPU player without resorting to cheapness. Tip #1 -- Assessing your opponent First of all, see if your opponent is capable of stopping Rose in the air. Rose has slightly better priority than all of Dhalsim's moves, except his standing JP, so you should try the strategy that doesn't work well for other characters -- jump on Dhalsim after he tries a Yoga Fire. If you find that your opponent can't handle Rose in the air (if, for example, he can't time his anti-air moves properly and end up being hit) then here's another strategy that might raise controversy -- jump backward, away from Dhalsim. Then jump on him again with an attack. Jump back. Jump in with an attack. Repeat. If your opponent is a half-decent Dhalsim player then you should abandon the aerial approach. Tip #2 -- Long range techniques My preferred strategy against Dhalsim is not to get close, but to keep away. Try to keep a full screen's distance away from Dhalsim but avoid putting Rose' back against the wall. At this range all of Dhalsim's attacks shouldn't be able to hit. Crouch and wait for his next move. If he tries a Yoga Fire _immediately_ respond with a Soul Spark. Don't wait for the Yoga Fire to cross midscreen, or Dhalsim will walk forward then hit you as you recover from the Soul Spark. Keep on throwing Soul Sparks and nullifying his fireballs. Remember: do this only if you're at a distance at which his FP can't hit Rose. If you try to nullify the Yoga Fire at a range where the FP can hit you, you can expect that Dhalsim will do a FP Yoga Fire quickly followed by a FP once you nullify the fireball. If you feel yourself spazzing out then take a breather by jumping straight up over the Yoga Fire then sticking out a FP/FK as you come down to discourage Dhalsim from walking towards Rose and sticking a limb beneath her. X-ism Dhalsim also occasionally makes the mistake of doing a Yoga Flame instead of the Yoga Fire. Watch for this and take advantage since the Yoga Flame has a long recovery time. Sooner or later, Dhalsim will try walk toward Rose to poke her with a FP or SP. Respond with a crouching SP and nail that limb. The greater the distance between Rose and Dhalsim, the better. Tip #3 -- He's coming closer... Rose is just slightly within range of Dhalsim's FP and SP. This is Dhalsim's strongest range and he has several tactics: a) Yoga Fire -> FP when opponent nullifies it. This is most often used against Akuma/Ryu/Ken becuase of their long recovery times after the fireball, but Rose is also vulnerable to this tactic. Lesson: don't use the Soul Spark to nullify the Yoga Fire at this range. Instead, jump straight up over the Yoga Fire and stick out a FP/FK. b) Yoga Fire -> anti-air if opponent jumps over it. This is Dhalsim's trademark pattern. At this range, nearly all of Dhalsim's anti-air moves will hit. Check out Dhalsim's Super Meter. If it's fully charged, then DO NOT JUMP AT HIM. Rose may have better priority, but if you jump at Dhalsim at this range you can count on the Yoga Tempest to fry her butt. If it's empty, then jump on him with a SK/FK as soon as he throws the Yoga Fire. While the SK deals little damage, it's angled in such a way that it will snuff out Dhalsim's anti-air moves, possibly even the Jab of Doom. Try to hit with only the tip of Rose' foot. c) Wait then counter with a FP. Another anti- Akuma/Ryu/Ken move that is also effective against Rose. Dhalsim won't throw a Yoga Fire but wait for his opponent to throw a fireball. He will then do a crouching FP. Dhalsim will get hit by the fireball but his opponent will get hit a FP that will be considered as a counter, inflicting massive damage. Lesson: don't throw Soul Sparks at this range. Rose' best option at this range is for her to get out of it, either nearer or farther. Getting farther is relatively easy, but getting nearer is the very thing that Dhalsim was designed to avoid. It's possible for Rose to jump on Dhalsim, but since this may not be a viable option, then use "Creeping Rose". Tip #4 -- You're within range of Rose' attacks If you've managed to come within range of Rose' crouching FK, don't celebrate just yet. Tactics at this range vary depending on which mode Dhalsim is playing in. If he's Z-ism/V-ism, he's toast. Things are more difficult if he's X-ism, even more so if he's Classical. a) Z-ism/V-ism Dhalsim. Poke repeatedly at Dhalsim with crouching FK/RK. Stick in an occasional crouching SP/FP if he tries to poke back. The Soul Spiral is out of the question, and use the Soul Spark only in combos, or he'll just slide underneath it. Go for the guard crash. If Dhalsim tries to back away or if you're pushed back then do the "Creeping Rose". If he tries to jump back then stand up and walk towards him a bit (watch out for Dhalsim's aerial moves; see tip #6) then as he's about to touch ground release a level 3 Aura Soul Throw or a Soul Spark. b) X-ism Dhalsim. As with Z-ism/V-ism, poke at Dhalsim repeatedly. Dhalsim's Guard Meter may be longer in X-ism, but he can't block in the air. Capitalize on this by jumping after him with a FP if he jumps back. Watch out for the Drill Zutsuki, though (see tip #6). c) Classical Dhalsim. Dhalsim is without a Guard Meter, and Rose can't use her Soul Spiral. She's at a definite disadvantage. Her only option is to do repeated crouching FK -> Soul Spark, which, if mistimed, can be countered easily with a slide. You can take a chance and try to throw Dhalsim, but see below. Getting into range of your JP/SK is NOT a good idea, paricularly against X-ism/Classic Dhalsim. If you're within Rose' jabbing distance, then Dhalsim's close crouching FP/Head Butt/Short Slide are also within range. These moves have as high priority as Rose' moves, but can inflict greater damage and are combo-able to the Yoga Fire/Flame/Tempest. If that's not enough to discourage you, then the range of Dhalsim's throws will. Dhalsim's throws have the greatest range in SFZ3 next to Zangief's and Karin's various throws. Tip #6 -- Dhalsim's escape/Dhalsim in the air Dhalsim, once cornered, has several options of escape. a) Drill Zutsuki. Dhalsim jumps up, then dives down with his head first. This move has a horizontal angle that may take him behind Rose if she's on the ground. Occasionally, Dhalsim will use this move to counter a fireball thrown at him. Another use for the Drill Zutsuki is to discourage opponents from jumping after him. Forget about trying to counter this move. It has a high priority and only the level 2/3 Aura Soul Throw or a Soul Spark will stop it consistenly. If you're in the air while Dhalsim performs this move simply block it, then when both Rose and Dhalsim touch ground throw his sorry ass. The Drill Zutsuki has a slight recovery time if it is blocked on the ground, so if you manage to block it while on the ground you have a small window of opportunity to hurt him. If you have a full Super Meter then do a level 3 Aura Soul Throw. If you don't, then you can try a crouching JP -> crouching SK -> crouching FK -> Soul Spark. If Dhalsim sails behind Rose then wait until Rose turns around then let loose a standing FP which will catch Dhalsim before he touches ground. b) Teleport. Luckily, this move is pretty hard to pull off consistenly. If you're on the ground and Dhalsim teleports, then walk backwards. As soon as he rematerializes, do a crouching RK if he's within range, or jump on him if he's not. The recovery time of the teleport insures that Rose can nail wherever he reappears, whether to the left or right of Rose. c) Jumping back with FK. I love this move (when I'm playing Dhalsim). Dhalsim jumps back then sticks out a FK. Even the best players are caught by this move, as Dhalsim's forward looks like it can reach all the way to the ground. Rose can use use her crouching FP to nail Dhalsim's leg, but it's easier just to block it. d) Drill Kick madness. The computer Dhalsim loves doing this. Dhalsim uses various angles of the Drill Kick to confuse his opponent, then do a quick combo to push the opponents away. A typical pattern is Drill Kick -> repeat -> crouching SK -> Yoga Fire/Flame/Tempest. Like Akuma's Tenma-kujinkyakuu, the Drill Kick is hard to stop because of its angle, plus it has a great recovery time. Luckily, I've yet to see this move used to its greatest effect, and Dhalsim players often make a mistake after pulling off two or three Drill Kicks. The three most common mistakes with the Drill Kick are: landing too high (in which case it has a long recovery and you can throw him then), landing on the ground instead of the opponent (Dhalsim's vulnerable to crouching RK), and jumping with no attack (he mistimed the Drill Kick and now he's floating down the ground -- make him pay with a crouching FP -> Aura Soul Throw). Tip #5 -- Don't jump directly on top of Dhalsim The "Jab of Doom" will stop any opponent trying to jump directly on top of Dhalsim. Although Rose can snuff the jab with her aerial attacks, I wouldn't recommend it unless you've got the timing down pat. Jump on top of Dhalsim only if he's been knocked down or from the farthest possible distance your aerial attack will allow. Tip #6 -- Yoga Flame applications The Yoga Flame has several uses, none of which are that useful, but a lot of players underestimate it. a) Against a character getting up. If you find yourself flat on your back with Dhalsim standing near you, you can expect that he'll release a Yoga Flame as you're getting up. Blocked, it's not really much of a threat. It's a bit like blocking a fireball. Unfortunately, most players seem to think that they can use a "wake-up move" against the Yoga Flame (particularly Akuma/Ken players). Even Rose players think they can pull off a level 3 Aura Soul Throw against the Yoga Flame as a wake-up move. Forget it. Ninety percent of the time you'll find yourself frying if you try to do a wake-up move against the Yoga Flame. Just block the damn thing. b) As anti-air. Strictly speaking, the Yoga Flame is lousy as anti-air. Players who find themselves hit by the Yoga Flame being used in this manner ought to play something other than SFZ3. c) Fake-out. A common mistake I've noticed in those playing against Dhalsim is to jump as soon as they block a Yoga Flame. They usually end up eating a FK. Lesson: once you block a Yoga Flame, don't jump; move toward Dhalsim a step then do a crouching SP/FP. d) Oops. IMHO, the biggest disadvantage to playing X-ism/Classic Dhalsim is the similarity between the Yoga Fire and Yoga Flame. I'm trying to do a Yoga Fire then suddenly a Yoga Flame comes out. If your opponent makes the same mistake, make him pay by using a level 3 Aura Soul Throw through the Yoga Flame or jumping on him for a nasty combo. In closing: Rose can beat all of Dhalsim's anti-air moves with the correct timing. Don't fall into the mentality of jumping at Dhalsim blindly just to gain distance. Instead, nail his limbs. And finally, playing against Dhalsim requires concentration, don't lose your cool. BTW: Is it my imagination or is Dhalsim much weaker in the PSX version than the arcade version ? * Rose Vs. Gen * Threat - moderate Common -ism - Z (fun to watch combos) Moves of note (Sou-ryuu style) - jumping FK/RK (long-ranged and good priority) - Gekirou (looks like Gen is doing bicycle kicks in the air; nasty, nasty, move that can be used both against aerial and grounded opponents, tons of priority, massive damage, juggles, multiple opporunities to combo) - standing FP/RK (nasty poke; too bad Rose can snuff it with nearly anything, even her crouching FP !) - Hyakurenkou (Gen's version of Hundred Hand Slap; use mostly in combos) - Zan'ei (Super Combo version of the Hyakurenkou; if this move hits, a timer appears over Rose' head -- once this timer reaches 0, Rose will be dizzied) - Shitenshuu (Gen rushes forward, leaving a wake of explosions if this move hits; extremely low priority as far as Super Combos go, but very damaging and nasty in combos) (Ki-ryuu style) - jumping FK (_massive_ hit area -- can cross up so nastily) - jumping RK (can hit _twice_ ?! in the air; used properly, it can start a very nasty combo if you're on the ground) - Jasen (Gen rolls forward, hitting multiple times; large damage) - Kyoutetsu (Gen arcs his hand downward; must be blocked standing) - Onkyou (looks like Gen is scooping up something; must be blocked crouching) - Jakouha (nasty anti-air Super Combo) - crouching FP (also known as the "Kirou"; Gen brings his hands up, then stabs forward; can inflict _massive_ damage) It's a good thing that Gen is so hard to learn and use properly. He's a very powerful character. Tip #1 -- Gen's styles Although being familiar with Gen's style is not a requirement, it can be useful if you know which of his moves become available to which style. In the Sou-ryuu style, Gen holds his hands in front of him. He can use the Gekirou, and almost all of his regular moves will link and are cancellable (sort of like Wolverine in the Vs. series). I don't play Gen myself, but my friends say that this is the style they generally prefer. In the Ki-ryuu style, Gen keeps his hands at an angle, one overhead, one over his chest, with thumb, index, and forefinger forming a point. Gen loses most of his combos butgains a variety of sneaky moves, such as the Kyoutetsu and Onkyu. Gen also inflicts more damage (sometimes _much_ more) in this mode. Note that X-ism Gen has no "styles". He gets the good moves of both Sou-ryuu and Ki-ryuu styles, but loses most of his combo capability and air-block. Its generally held that X-ism Gen is the worst. Tip #2 -- Sou-ryuu style; Gen generalities, part one The first style for Gen to play is for him to get into poking distance (slightly nearer than Rose' poking range) and start sticking out attacks. If any attacks hits or is blocked, it can be linked into more attacks. Generally speaking, the closer you are, the more attacks he can link in. If he has a Super Combo charged up, you can count on a Shitenshuu at the end of the links. The best way to avoid this bit of nastiness is to keep just outside of his poking range then poke back. Rose can do this because her attacks have longer range and priority than Gen's. Remember: stay out of _his_ range. Don't worry about trading hits -- the farther you are from Gen, the more likely your move will outprioritize his. Never use the Soul Spiral, even in a combo (such as when you successfully hit with a poke). If you miss, you'll pay. The Soul Spark should be used sparingly, such as in a combo or when Gen's very far away (against the Ki-ryuu style, don't use the Soul Spark at all; see tip #2). Never jump on Gen (unless dizzy or otherwise incapacitated, of course). First, he has an odd assortment of anti-air attacks (in particular, the Gekirou). Second (even if your opponent can't do a decent Gekirou), if you jump at him its very likely that you'll land close to him (and therefore within his poking range -- bad idea). Tip #2.1 -- the Gekirou fake-out If you don't jump around much, the Gekirou loses much of it's effectiveness. The Gekirou, however, can be used to fake out, because Gen's descent can be speeded up considerably. Gen will do a Gekirou and _intentionally_ miss. If you try to attack him, he will suddenly recover then do another Gekirou. Lesson: if Gen does a Gekirou for no reason, respond only if you're too far away to be hit with another Gekirou. Gen in the air has one decent attack -- his jumping RK (the jumping FK looks the same, but is used more in cross-ups rather than frontal attacks). Rose can have a hard time stopping this move. Just block it. Attempting to trade hits with a crouching FP or a Aura Soul Throw is not recommended -- if you lose the trade, you'll likely end up in a very nasty combo. You can discourage Gen from jumping at Rose by not using her slower pokes (such as the crouching RK). Also, if you've been keeping Gen at a distance, whenever he jumps at Rose you'll have time to jump back and stick out a FK. Gen air-to-air isn't very good, as his moves are mostly mean air-to-ground. Tip #3 -- Ki-ryuu style; Gen generalities, part two Ki-ryuu, while lacking the combo ability of Sou-ryuu, is nothing to laugh at. Ki-ryuu is the "sneaky" style. Personally, I have more trouble dealing with the Ki-ryuu style than the Sou-ryuu. Lay off the Soul Spark completely. Gen can roll underneath it, or use a Super Combo over it. Watch out for his Kyoutetsu and Onkyou. They're pretty slow, but since the Kyoutesu must be blocked standing (and the Onkyou crouching), expect these moves as part of Gen's confusion tactics. Unlike most top-down moves, these two will move Gen forward quite a distance. Anyway, both these moves have pretty low priority so you can simply hit Gen out of them. Lesson: keep him at a distance and poke aggressively at Gen in Ki-ryuu style. The Kirou is a slow poke. So slow, most players try to hit Gen out of it, like his Kyoutetsu and Onkyou. This is a mistake. The Kirou may be slow, but if it hits while you are trying to stop it, it inflicts _massive_ damage, kinda like being hit with a Super Combo. Just block the damn thing then counter-attack. While Gen's aerial attacks in Ki-ryuu have much lower priority than in Sou-ryuu, they're more examples of why I call Ki-ryuu the "sneaky" style. The jumping FK, for example, can be used as standard frontal attacks, but can also hit opponents as it passes over and behind them. It's as if Gen is kicking both forward and backward, making it hard to block. Gen will likely use this move when you've been knocked down and getting up. Luckily, Gen can only try the cross-up version of this move only when he's pretty close in the first place (almost right beside Rose). Lesson: keep him at a distance. Gen's jumping RK is a horror. It can hit twice! Imagine this: Gen jumps and does a RK --> Rose blocks the jumping RK standing, then crouches to block the next attack --> the second hit of the jumping RK hits -> Gen combos. Ouch. Luckily, as I've said, Gen's aerial attacks have lower priority in Ki-ryuu than in Sou-ryuu. Lesson: if Gen in Ki-ryuu jumps at you, knock him out of the air. In closing: Don't jump at Gen. Keep him at a distance. Poke from as far away as possible. In other words: don't give him the opportunity to combo. * Rose Vs. Guy * I'm sorry. I have nothing to say about how to fight Guy. Not only have I yet to fight a Rose Vs. Guy match, but I also don't play Guy at all (nor do I have the patience to learn). Guy was pretty popular in SFZ1 and 2, but even then I never got to fight him with Rose. Please help me out and mail me Rose Vs. Guy tactics. * Rose Vs. Honda * Threat - moderate Common -ism - Z (but V is suprisingly nasty) Moves of note - JP/SP/crouching JP/SP (Honda sticks his palm out; long ranged pokes with good priority) - crouching FP (long ranged, quite damaging, rather fast; causes knockdown; long recovery) - crouching FK (double hit knee and foot; insane priority; extremely short range) - standing FP (anti-air chop) - jumping FP/RK (surprisingly long ranged punch and kick) - Flying Sumo Press (Honda jumps and stretches out his arms wide then lands chest first; good priority and area) - Harai-geri (Honda stretches his foot out low; rather quick and with good range) - Head Butt (also known as the Super Zutsuki; Honda flies horizontally in the air; lots of uses) - Butt Slam (also known as the Super Hyakkan Otoshi; Honda flies up then lands on his butt; hits on the way up and down; must be blocked standing) - Ooichou Nage (Honda grabs his opponents head, slams it on the ground, then he sits on the poor bastard) - Orochi Kudaki (Super Combo version of the Ooichou Nage; very damaging) - Oni Musuo (Super Combo version of the Head Butt; rather weak, but can patch pokers by surprise) Strategies versus Honda ?! Yep. In my opinion, Honda is the most powerful non-projectile character, horribly underrated (check out how they slam him in alt.games.sf2). IMHO, the only way to consistenly beat him is to play V-ism (or play Akuma, any -ism). Since Rose is mostly played in Z, the following tactics may be sorely needed. Tip #1 -- Never approach a "charged" Honda. A "charged" Honda is one that has been holding down-back for 2 seconds and therefore capable of the Sumo Head Butt, Butt Slam, and his two Super Combos. Honda, first and foremost, is a "turtle" character. He's quite content to sit on his fat ass and let you attack, then unleash a Sumo Head Butt when you jump on him (timed correctly, the Sumo Head Butt is undefeatable as anti-air), mixing it up with a Butt Slam if you're playing defensively, or a Oni Musuo against pokers. Tip #2 -- Don't expect Rose's combos to work on Honda. Honda, like Blanka, has a strange character sprite. Some attacks have a difficult time on hitting him, especially when he's crouching or getting up. Instead of destroying Honda with devastating combos, chip away at his life bar and guard meter with quick, darting attacks (see tip #4) as you might suddenly find yourself open to attack after missing a slow combo. Tip #3 -- When cornered, don't panic. Honda is horrifyingly effective when he gets to corner an opponent. All of his punches have high priority and a typical Honda strategy against cornered opponents is to mix up his various punches and Butt Slam to wear away the guard meter, and a standing FP or Head Butt against those who jump at him. Although its possible to sneak in crouching FK/RK underneath Honda's punches, don't kid yourself. Honda's crouching SP can stop a lot things, including Super Combos. What Rose should do is block. After a couple of of Honda's punches (often a crouching JP -> crouching SK -> standing/crouching SP -> crouching FP) Honda wil be too far away and will do one of the following: a) do a crouching RK or Harai-geri b) Butt Slam c) walk forward and repeat the punch attacks d) Sumo Head Butt (if you try to move forward or jump in any direction) e) standing FP (if you try to jump on him) Unless you can do a a level 3 Aura Soul throw there is little you can do about Honda's crouching RK and Harai-geri (both of which will trade hits with Rose' kicks, but Honda inflicts more damage). On the upside, if you blocked the RK or if Honda misses you will no longer be trapped in a corner. Honda's crouching RK has a shorter range that it looks, and long recovery. The Harai Geri has longer range, but it doesn't cause a knockdown and leaves Honda open, blocked or not. The Butt Slam must be blocked standing. It can do two painful hits. It can cause a knockdown. What it cannot do is recover fast. If Honda performs a Butt Slam forget about stoping it. Just block standing then pull off a nasty combo of your own. If, at any time, you manage to block Honda's crouching FP, _immediately_ do a crouching RK. His crouching FP has a longer recovery time than it looks. Tip #4 -- Don't worry about you guard meter Honda is not a combo machine. He can cause a rapid guard crash, but don't worry about it. Even if your opponent manages to crash your guard, he won't be able to follow it up easily (this, of course, does not apply to V-ism Honda). Tip #5 -- Go for the guard crash This, I have found, is the best way to win against a good Honda. Step 1. Get some distance away from Honda, preferably out of his jumping RK range. This should be easy, considering that Honda is a "turtle" character. The moment Honda walks forward (thus squandering his "charge"), go to step 3. Step 2. Throw a Soul Spark. Do this when you're either very close or very far away. Up close the Soul Spark will push away Honda. Far away Honda will a) block b) jump c) Butt Crush. If Honda blocks, throw another Soul Spark. If he jumps forward or does a Butt Brush meet him in the air. Step 3. Do an early jumping SK/FK. These moves have high priority and will win against Honda the air. If Honda blocks, follow it up with a crouching JP -> crouching SK -> crouching FK -> crouching RK/JP Soul Spiral/Soul Spark. These moves are unlikely to all hit, but are hard to avoid and are a pain in the guard meter. Alternatively, you can throw them after the jumping SK/FK. Tip #6 -- Go for the cross-up Here's another tactics, reminiscent of ARK. Get close to Honda then jump on him as with a cross-up FK, followed by a couple of attacks, then cross him up again. This works well because Honda's Headbutt was designed to be used against a frontal jumping attacks, and his standing FP was designed as a anticipatory anti-air, making it worthless if Rose puts on the pressure. Attack on the ground only a couple of times. This makes sure that Honda won't have enough of a charge to use any of his specials. Tip #7 -- Honda in the air Honda in the air means one of three things: a) you've been knocked down, b) you've thrown a Soul Spark too close, c) your opponent thinks that you're not good enough to stop Honda in the air. Honda's quite powerful in the air (against characters without a Dragon Punch) -- he has a wide variety of aerial moves suited for many situations, all of which have better than average priority but difficult timing. If you've been knocked down (most likely by Honda's crouching FP or his HeadButt) and he's in the air, most likely he'll use his Flying Sumo Press. In this case, the most Rose can do is block or do a level 2 Aura Soul Throw. Note that the Flying Sumo Press is also used as a cross-up attack, so watch out. The three most common attacks that Honda follows right after the Flying Sumo Press is the crouching crouching JP -> crouching SK -> Head Butt, the repeated punches (see tip #3), and throwing. In the first two cases there is little Rose can do but block. The third can be anticipated, as Honda has to pause or walk a bit forward to throw. If you've thrown a Soul Spark too close, then Honda will likely use his jumping FP/RK. There is little you can do about this except pray that you can block the attack. Lesson: use the Soul Spark only in combos or if Honda is very far away. If you find yourself continually blocking Honda while he's in the air, then my advise is this: get aggressive. Honda players will never jump on an opponent unless they feel that he's a wuss. Use Rose' Soul Throw once in while. It's not the greatest of moves but it can sure demoralize you opponent if it hits. If Honda jumps at you and doesn't attack, he has one thing in mind -- Ooichou Nage. If he hasn't attacked on his way down, he's going to use his throw. In closing: The key to Honda is distance. Too many players fall into the mentality of "Bah, once I get the timing of Honda's Head Butt, he's toast". This is particulary true for Ryu/Ken players, who can't seem to get it in their heads that Honda simply cannot be approached from the air if he's "charged". The second pitfall Honda's opponents fall into is the "oh, shit, he's coming, and none of my attacks are working !" -- then they start to panic and make serious mistakes. This can easily be avoided by simply keeping you distance, lobbing Soul Sparks from far away, then attacking him once he's lost his "charge". * Rose Vs. Karin * Threat - moderate (Z) to high (V) Common -ism - Z (most common); V (most devastating) Moves of note - standing FP (Karin's infamous anti-air; she does an odd pose, extending her hands to the front and rear; extremely large hit area and good priority) - standing FK (Karin hits with her knee then extends her foot; the knee has very high priority and can be combo'd) - Guren Ken, Hou Shou, Mujin Kyaku, etc. (combination of various punches, elbows, and kicks) - Ressen Ha (windmill punch; hits twice, both hits must be blocked standing) - Tsumuji-gari (hop then spin kick; must be blocked standing; very fast for a top-down move) - Arakuma Inashi (two knees to the midsection then a trip; long ranged throw) - Kanzuki-ryuu Shinpikaibyaku (Super Combo version of her Guren Ken) - Kanzuki-ryuu Kou'ou Ken (Super Combo version of her Ressen Ha; Karin's air-juggling Super) Karin, without a doubt, is the most overrated character in SFZ3. She receives so much hype that I was beginning to think that she was the ultimate character, particularly when I saw her V-ism combos that were beginning to look like the infinite hits of the Marvel series. The hype has gone down (thanks to V-ism Akuma/Ryu/Sakura), but she's still ranked way up there. Tip #1 -- Karin basics Karin has four basic techniques: a) wait until the opponent does a long-recovering move (such as a fireball) then deliver a vicious combo; b) poke/throw; c) lure opponent in the air then smash him; d) VC through an attack and then smash him. Obviously, the best way to deny Karin of her first technique is to avoid such moves as the Soul Spark/Soul Spiral altogether. The Soul Spark can still be used occasionally, provided that it's used in a combo or if Karin is very far away. Other moves that should be used sparingly against Karin is Rose' Soul-piette, crouching RK, Soul Throw, and Soul Reflect (which is pretty useless against Karin anyway). Lesson: when fighting Karin, stick to quick attacks. Tip #1.1 -- Z-ism Karin Once your opponent realizes that you aren't letting yourself be open to attack, he'll go for Karin's poking techniques. Despite what numerous Karin FAQ's say to the contrary, she is not a good poker (against Rose, anyway, who has much longer range). Karin must be up close for her pokes to work effectively. If at any time the Karin comes within range, poke back at her with a crouching FK. Rose's crouching FK will snuff all of Karin's attacks (except for Karin's crouching SP, which will trade hits at close range, and Karin's Supers). Watch out for Karin's Tsumuji-Gari and Ressen Ha, which have unusually high priority and speed for moves that must be blocked standing. Remember: the Ressen Ha hits twice. Karin's standing FK will beat all of Rose' attacks at close range, so try to keep her farther away than this. Tip #1.2 -- V-ism Karin Karin's VC's are noteworthy because of several things. First, she has a Special throw (the Arakuma Inashi), which means she can use off-the-ground throws. Second, she has far reaching ground and aerial moves, which means she can chase after opponents being knocked away. What these two points mean is that Karin has _devastating_ VC's from _anywhere_, with a huge margin for errors (courtesy of the Arakuma Inashi). Play on the defensive while Karin still has a Super Combo Meter charge. Weave in an out of your crouching FK range, but do _not_ stick out a crouching FK if you're within range. If you do, Karin can VC through it and hit Rose while she's recovering. Stick out a crouching FK if you're _outside_ its range, and crouching JP/SP/SK if you're within range. The entire point here is not to hit Karin, but to attack (and miss) then hope that Karin will do a VC after you've already recovered from your move (thus wasting her VC). There are two dangers to this technique. First, Karin can VC then start her combo with one of her charging attacks (such as the Guren Ken), nailing Rose even from afar. Lesson: you may want to use crouching JP/SK exclusively rather than crouching FK. Second, she may still VC even while you're blocking (with repeated standing RK), which can really eat the guard meter. Tip #1.1.1 -- the Zero Counter Against V-ism Karin, learn to do this instinctively. The moment you block Karin's VC, do a Zero Counter. Unlike most V-ism character, with whom I suggest doing a Zero Counter only when you guard is about to crash, it is imperative to Zero Counter Karin, as she has the Arakuma Inashi to use against blocking opponents. Karin's only VC that doesn't need to be Zero Countered immediately is her repeated standing RK. You can wait a bit before Zero Countering, as Karin would be too far away to use the Arakuma Inashi. Once your guard is about to crash of Karin switches attacks, Zaro Counter. BTW, is it possible to do a Ressen Ha --> Arakuma Inashi during a VC ? I haven't been able to pull this off. Under no circumstance should you jump at Karin if she has a Super Combo Meter charge. She can simply VC through your attack, then do a Arakuma Inashi --> combo when you land. Lesson: never get close to Karin if she has a charge. Once V-Karin loses her Super Combo meter, switch to offense. Karin will try to charge up her meter with missed attacks (particularly, missed throws). Instead of deliberately missing pokes, get in close and hit her as often and as hard as you can. Sometimes V-Karin players get reckless in their attempt to recharge. Karin's anti-air have reached legendary status. Her standing FP will stop nearly any aerial attack. While it's theoretically possible for Rose to beat Karin's standing FP (Rose' jumping SK can beat it cleanly), the timing required to do so leaves Rose open to throws if Karin decides to block instead. Also, Karin's Kanzuki-ryuu Kou'ou Ken can also be used as anti-air if the opponent approaches her at a certain angle. Lesson: if Karin's just standing there, it best not to jump at her. Karin can be jumped on safely on if she's been knocked down (unless you're facing V-Karin). The standing FP can do little against an already opponent on the way down. This is also true for the Kanzuki-ryuu Kou'ou Ken, which will leave Karin open to attack if it misses (which it usually does if used as a "get-up" move). Tip #2 -- L-mode Karin L-mode Karin does not many combos to boast with, but her throws inflict 99% damage. Basically, if she gets a hold of Rose, you'll lose. When facing L-mode Karin, don't jump at all -- she'll try an aerial throw. Stick to the ground and poke at her, keeping her at a distance. Don't be tempted to do combos or do long-recovery moves if you can help it. If she jumps, knock her out of the air with a crouching FP. Once she lands, _immediately_ start poking again. In closing: Z-ism Karin is good, but not _that_ good. Just avoid getting caught by her anti-air and poke at her. V-ism Karin is a nightmare. Try to lure your opponent into doing a VC too far away to do much, absolutely avoiding any of Rose slower moves. Once V-Karin's meter is depleted, switch immediately to offense. * Rose Vs. M. Bison (Vega in Japan) * Threat - low to moderate Common -ism - Z (I kinda like X, but his colors and Super suck; Z is much more common and versatile; V ?) Moves of note - JP (Bison jabs high; used in combos; very good anti-air) - SP/FP (another high punch; used to punish cross-ups) - FK (a mid-section kick; his main poke) - RK (a high kick; anti-air) - crouching SP (a low punch; very good poke at close range; used in combos) - Psycho Shot (his fireball; very poor recovery, so is mainly used from far away or in combos) - Double Knee Press (he lunges forward for a 2-hit scissor kick; the deeper the attack, the longer the recovery) - Psycho Crusher (Bison flies, spinning; in Z-ism, this is a Super Combo that is used to punish mistakes and jump-ins, as it's rather unreliable in combos; in X-ism, this is used as anti-air; rather powerful, but in X-ism the recovery is very bad) - Head Press (stomp on the head; extremely high priority, but is vulnerable prior to the stomp itself) - Teleport (his... teleport) - Knee Press Nightmare (Super Combo version of his Double Knee Press; anti-air; used in combos and confusion; good recovery) Bison can hold his own against most characters, but loses badly when facing Akuma or a V-ism character. Too bad, I kinda like his style. Tip #1 -- Know his jump angle; when to Soul Spark M. Bison jumps very high, far, and fast. You can safely throw him Soul Sparks at a distance you normally wouldn't for other characters (as he'll probably land behind Rose if he tried to jump over it). That being said, be cautious with throwing Soul Sparks at a distance and when Rose is in a corner. Never nullify the Psycho Shot with a Soul Spark. Bison will do a Head Press if you do. If Bison does a Psycho Shot assess how far he did it. If he did it within your jumping attack range (unlikely) then jump in and attack. _Don't_ wait for the Psycho Shot to get nearer -- jump immediately. The Psycho Shot has lousy recovery. If Bison threw the Psycho Shot from a distance (very likely) wait a bit, then jump backward with a SK/FK (as if you're trying to airblock the Psycho Shot). A Psycho Shot thrown from a distance is very likely to be followed with a Head Press, and any attempt to jump forward will likely fail. Alternatively, you can just block both attacks, but I'd rather nail Bison in the air with a kick. Pausing and jumping backward may not work if Rose' back is near a corner. If this is the case, skip the pause and immediately jump forward and airblock. If Bison launched the Psycho Shot at a pretty close distance, Soul Reflect it if you can. Tip #2 -- Jumping on Bison This may not be a good idea. In fact, when I'm playing as Bison, I love it when my opponent jumps on him. Bison has numerous anti-air that are surprisingly effective, such as his JP and RK. Even his Specials and Supers can be used as anti-air. Add his walking speed and good throw range you've got a character that eats jumpers alive. When you absolutely have to jump on Bison, do so with an early SK/FK, in the hopes that it will "freeze" Bison into his blocking animation (therefore he can't position better). An early SK/FK might also out-prioritize some of his anti-air moves. If you ever get hit in the air by Bison on the ground, _immediately_ air-recover and stick up a FP. I noticed that players struck out of the air by Bison tend to forget to counter-attack (out of shock ?) in the air and end up getting hit by another attack. Tip #3 -- Bison on the ground Bison is a poker, pure and simple. He walks fast and his attacks have good range. Despite this, he's not a "weaver" (like Cammy). I think he's prone to being stuck in his blocking animation (at least, that's what it feels when I'm playing). He'll walk bravely forward, stick out his FK to poke and use his crouching SP as a counter-poke. His opponents often panic once their guard meter starts flashing, then jump on him (a mistake) and end up being juggled in the air. Remember: Bison has no top-down move. This is his greatest weakness in the poking game. Simply crouch block, stick out Rose' SP or FK (which can snuff his pokes, as well as preventing him from walking in and throwing), and Bison has no recourse but to go for his long-range confusion tactics. A good Bison will never use his Double Knee Press or Slide as part of his pokes. Be ready to deal out punishment if he does. Tip #4 -- Bison in the air (normal moves) Bison's aerial kicks are pretty nasty. If an opponent is in the air with him, his SK will outprioritize most attacks. Lesson: when jumping, use an early SK/FK; better yet, don't jump at all. His FK/RK have high priority, but he'll never use them to attack a grounded Rose unless she's left in the open (such as right after a Soul Spark) -- Bison spends too much time in the air for a simple frontal jump-in to work effectively (Dragon Punch Phobia ?). Lesson: don't throw Soul Sparks within his jumping range (see Tip #1). Tip #5 -- Bison in the air (Head Press) Jump back and stick out a foot, unless you're in a corner. In a corner, Rose can do very little against the Head Press. Jump forward and air-block. Lesson: don't get cornered. Tip #6 -- Bison confusion Confusion 1: The Psycho Shot. Bison throws his Psycho Shot from a distance, then follows it up with a jumping attack or a Head Press. See tip #1 for details on this. Confusion 2: Bison does a level 1 Knee Press Nightmare (KPN) that is blocked. If Rose tries to attack after the KPN, Bison will immediately follow-up with a Psycho Crusher. Lesson: keep an eye on his Super Combo meter. Confusion 3: Bison jumps... and lands somewhere totally unexpected (such as behind Rose) then throws. Lesson: if Bison jumps, and, for some reason, Rose is stuck in her blocking animation, Bison just tried to land behind you with a Special move (an odd version of the Skull Diver). Wait till he _almost_ lands, then attack, no matter what direction Rose are facing. Rose will correct herself when Bison lands. In closing: Don't jump on him. Avoid corners, as Rose can't deal with the Head Press there. Don't nullify his Psycho Shot with Soul Spark -- Bison can follow-up. Know his jump range in order to know when to safely throw him with a Soul Spark. * Rose Vs. R. Mika * Threat - low Common -ism - Z Moves of note - crouching JP/SK/FK/RK (good priority) - crouching SP (R. Mika jumps up with her head; anti-air; good priority) - crouching FP (R. Mika lunges with her shoulder; sneaky all-around move with good priority) - Flying Body Press (R.Mika jumps and spreads her arms wide; deceptively tricky when used as a cross-up) - Paradise hold (R.Mika tumbles toward you then slams you with her thighs; slow but can be tricky to stop) - Daydream Headlock (choke hold; very short range) - Flying Peach (R. Mika flies through the air butt first) - Heavenly Dynamite (R. Mika delivers several headbutts then slams you) - Rainbow Hip Rash (multiple forearms hits; long period of invulnerability and unbelievable priority) R. Mika players are almost always Zangief players who want to see if they can use her successfully. Beginners also like using R. Mika because even if they just mash buttons they'll likely hit their opponent. R. Mika's Special Moves, however, "trip over" one another (you want to do one thing and she ends up doing another), so even though she's a viable character, but I don't think she'll ever see much action. Tip #1 -- Don't try to trade hits. R. Mika's has aerial moves similar to Zangief, but R. Mika's have less priority and duration. You can try anti-air moves that you wouldn't use against Zangief but do be cautious because while R. Mika is less effective in the air than Zangief she's still formidable. R. Mika's Flying Body Press is a great cross-up move, so if she tries to jump behind you make sure you block high, then immediately low (this might sound rather obvious, but try fighting a good R. Mika and you'll see what I mean). R. Mika's jumping FK has good priority, so I suggest blocking it instead of trying to stop it in the air. On the ground, R. Mika's moves are rather slow, but have long range plus good priority and damage. Instead of trying to trade hits, simply block her crouching JP/SK/FK then attack. R. Mika's anti-air moves have good priority with proper timing. Don't try to jump on her if she's just sitting there. Attack from the air only if you've managed to knock her down and she's getting up. Tip #2 -- Don't rely on your kicks; it won't stop the Paradise Hold The Paradise Hold looks easy to stop. It is -- if you happen to be Akuma/Ryu/Ken. Rose has a harder time, as her attacks sometimes pass through R. Mika while she's tumbling. It seems that Rose' kicks have the hardest time stopping the Paradise hold, so use her punches. Tip #3 -- Watch out for that Flying Peach There are two versions of this move. In the punch version, R. Mika bounces her butt off the floor then heads toward you. In the kick version, R. Mika flies directly toward you, then as rubs her behind as she recovers. Both moves CAN go through projectiles (I've seen the computer do it, but I can't do it myself). The kick version isn't much of a danger. The recovery time is an invitation to be hit. It's used only in combos. The punch version is much more dangerous. It almost has no recovery time and is a perfect setup for the Daydream Headlock, the Heavenly Dynamite, or a simple throw. In order to avoid being set up by the Flying Peach you have to be able to tell the difference between the punch and the kick version. Remember: in the punch version she bounces off the ground. However, if you can't tell the difference between the punch and kick versions, here's another tip: jump away once you block the Flying Peach. If your opponent isn't that fast, then you can try attacking with crouching JPs after you block the Flying Peach. This tactic doesn't work very well against better players, as they'll try to do the Rainbow Hip Rash if you try to attack right after blocking (remeniscent of SFEX tactics). Tip #4 -- If you're feeling lazy... Just sit there and poke at R. Mika with kicks. While R. Mika's attacks have respectable priority, they're almost all meant to be for frontal attacks (with the exception of her crouching SP) and not poking. Since she has no projectile, there's little she can do against a poker. In closing: Turtle and poke. * Rose Vs. Rolento * Threat - moderate to high Common -ism - Z/X (frankly, I'm not that impressed with V) Moves of note - JP/crouching JP (Rolento stabs with his baton; high priority and he'll a couple of these in a row) - jumping JP (looks like his crouching JP, but in the air; high priority and used mainly to meet an aerial opponent) - SP (Rolento turns his back then stabs his baton upward at an angle; anti-air) - crouching SP (he twirls his baton for three hits; annoying; good priority) - FP (he bangs his baton downward in an arc; anti-air and occasionally a poke; hits twice) - crouching FP (swings his baton downward; fast poke) - standing RK (kicks like a mule; anti-air) - Patriot Circle (twirls his baton for up to 11 hits; rarely used outside of a sure-hit combo as it has a horrible recovery time; learn when to spot this and make him pay) - Mine Sweeper (Rolento rolls backward, leaving grenades; anti-air) - Fake Rod (a hop with his baton; Rolento might use this if you've been poking him with crouching FK/RK -- it can hit Rose' foot; not very damaging, but quite embarrassing) - Stinger (Rolento jumps straight up a hurls a knife; an annoyance tactic) Tough match. Rolento's moves have a slightly better priority and range than Rose, plus he can consistently deal damage if you mess up. And then, once Rolento has the upper hand, he'll "turtle", rolling/jumping away or sticking that damn baton defensively until time runs out. Tip #1 -- Knowing Rolento's basic strategies. Rolento's stand-off range is about the tip of his crouching FK. From here he has several strategies. Rolento will take a short step toward you, crouch, then stick a JP/SP. The JP has high priority, and he can use it up to three times before he uses another move. With X-ism Rolento, the standing JP will hit crouching characters, so watch out. The crouching SP hits up to three times, good range, is a major pain in the guard meter, and causes dizziness rather rapidly if it hits. Once in a while he'll try a crouching FK. Between these attacks he'll sometimes insert a JP Patriot Circle (that spinning baton attack), especially if the crouching FK hits. Good players will stop after two JP Patriot Circles if you manage to block, since this will make Rolento recover at a safe distance from almost any attack. The best players don't use the Patriot Circle to poke at all. If your opponent is trying to crash your guard (quite likely), he'll also mix up a standing/crouching FP. If you try to jump, he'll try a standing FP if he's quick enough, a standing RK if you're already too high and some distance away, or a standing SP. His jumping JP is also a nuisance, and his Mine Sweeper is pretty embarrassing if it hits. Rolento has several moves that let him move quickly around the screen (take a look at a Rolento FAQ for details on this). Rose, unless Rolento is panicking, cannot keep up with these moves. Tip # 2 -- So you know his moves. Now what ? At first, keep close, preferably between the range of Rose crouching SK/FK or closer. At this range Rose' and Rolento's attacks have the same priority. If you get to the range of the tip of Rose crouching FK Rolento's crouching SP/FP have too much an advantage. Get close and poke at him with crouching attacks (see "creeping Rose"). Also, the closer you are, the more safely you can use the Soul Spark. If Rolento walks away, resist the urge to jump at him. Rolento players will certainly go for the guard crash. As such, try to stay away from corners as much as possible. Also, once Rolento manages to wear away your Guard Meter with three or more hits try to get away for a breather (usually by jumping back). Tip # 3 -- Don't use the Soul Spiral if you're not sure it will hit; use the Soul Spark only in combos. I usually suggest poking with the JP Soul Spiral against non- projectile characters. Against Rolento, the Soul Spiral is a bad idea. If it misses, Rolento can quickly cross the distance. Rolento has many anti-projectile moves. Do not poke him with the Soul Spark, even if you're a full screen distance away. Just because Rose and Rolento are on opposite ends of the screen does not mean he can't reach you. Use the Soul Spark only in combos. Tip # 4 -- Go for the aerial battle. Jumping on Rolento while he's on the ground is only a good idea if you're close enough for a cross-up. All of his anti-air assume that his opponent is coming down at him from the front. Otherwise, resist the temptation. If Rolento jumps, for any reason, jump at him. Against Rose, this is Rolento's most vulnerable point. Rolento's jumping attacks are the bane of most opponents (particularly his jumping JP), this is not so with Rose. Rose can outprioritize him with her jumping SK/FK. The only way Rolento can consistently win an aerial exchange is he's currently higher in the air. If this is the case, simply block the attack then make him pay (Rolento's attacks often carry him farther forward and downward faster most other characters, thus bringing him into striking range after a blocked aerial attack). Tip #5 -- Cornering Rolento A cornered Rolento is a dead one. Once you've cornered Rolento keep the pressure up with early jumping SK -> crouching attack. Never mind his anti-air, as up close, the jumping SK can snuff them all, and the jumping FK as cross up is nearly unstoppable. Sooner or later he'll try the Delta Air Escape or High Jump and try to get behind Rose. See tip #4. Watch out for the Minesweeper. In closing: Rolento moves fast and can really punish fireballers. Rose' best approach is to try to outpoke him. Avoid jumping on Rolento unless he's cornered or as a cross-up. Once Rolento's on the run he will certainly take into the air, a place where Rose has an advantage. * Rose Vs. Sagat * Threat -low Not many people play Sagat. He is usually played similarly to Akuma/Ryu/Ken, but his size, slow speed, and low priority make him a lightweight character. His combos in V-ism, while devastating and easy, simply don't make up for his vulnerabilities. Rose can easily make mincemeat of Sagat. Although most of Sagat's moves have long ranges, Rose pretty much out-prioritizes them all. Sagat's Tiger Shot (both high and low) can easy be caught with Rose' Soul Reflect. The Tiger Uppercut can be snuffed out by a jumping SK. If Sagat's being defensive, poke at him with crouching SP/FK/RK or Soul Sparks. * Rose Vs. Sakura * Threat - high Common -ism - Z for beginners, V for experts Moves of note - crouching SP (Sakura delivers a low elbow; combo-able and can swat extended limbs) - <close> standing FP (Sakura delivers a two-handed uppercut; watch out for this in V-ism) - Enzuigeri (also known as "Flower Kick"; Sakura brings her foot high for an arching overhead kick; must be blocked standing; rather fast and very dangerous under V-ism) - Shou'ou Ken (Sakura's rushing uppercut; low priority and slow recovery, but a menace because of the damage it inflicts even if blocked) - Sakura Otoshi (Sakura jumps up in the air then brings her fists down; must be blocked standing) - Doshita (taunt that inflicts damage; Sakura giggles then points her finger; rather high priority) - Shinkuu Hadou Ken (Super Combo version of her fireball) - Haru Ichiban (Super Combo version of her Hurricane kick; must be blocked crouching) - Midare Sakura (Super Combo version of her Shou'ou Ken; mostly used in combos) People used to play Sakura for the same reason as Dan: to goof around. I'm not saying that she's a weak character. I'm saying that it takes a lot of skill to win with Sakura fighting against a competent opponent. And then V-ism Sakura was discovered. Ouch. A good Sakura player _will not_ play like an Akuma/Ryu/Ken player. Sakura's strength comes from her high priority moves, the poking game, and her ability to deliver extremely powerful combos once one of her attacks hit. Tip #1 -- "Hey, Sakura, is that I _fireball_ I see ? Ha ha ha ha !" or "Hey, you missed your Hurricane ! Die !" If anyone has noticed, I did not include Sakura's Hadouken (fireball) and Shunpuu Kyaku (Hurricane kick) in the "move of note" list above. These moves suck. No kidding. All of them have hideous recovery times and are only useful in combos. If your Sakura opponent even _tries_ to use any of these moves other than in combos then you can pretty much assume your opponent is only goofing around with Sakura -- go win with ease. Seriously, good Sakura players will use these moves only in combos or if they're baiting you for a VC. Don't expect to be able to use Rose' level 3 Aura Soul Throw through a fireball against these players. Tip #1.1 -- "Ouch, that wasn't a fireball after all..." In an environment full of Akuma/Ryu/Ken players, its easy to fall into trying to second-guess them. Players train themselves to be fast enough to jump over a ARK's fireball and attack him while he's recovering. This does not necessarily apply to Sakura. Sakura's Shinkuu Hadou Ken is amazingly hard to jump over, so avoid the temptation of jumping at Sakura as soon as you see her wind up for her super fireball. Tip #1.2 -- "Ouch, you dirty rat..." Once in a while, Sakura will do a Shunpuu Kyaku then _deliberately_ miss. This happens most often if you've been knocked down. The Sakura player is trying to fool you into attacking, at which time Sakura will unleash a Haru Ichiban or Midare Sakura. If you don't attack, Sakura will try a throw. Lesson: while the Shunpuu Kyaku is worthless in itself, its a good setup move. Lesson: learn the distances of Sakura's Shunpuu Kyaku and you'll never be fooled by it. Tip #2 -- Sakura on the ground; the poking game Sakura on the ground means that your opponent is planning to use her poking attacks, which include her standing FK/RK, crouching SP/SK/FK/RK, and the Enzuigeri. Unfortunately for Rose, Sakura is better in the poking game. It may look like Rose has a _slight_ advantage in range, but most of Sakura's moves have higher priority and once she closes that tiny range difference... If you decide to poke back at Sakura, then Rose' best moves are crouching JP/SP/FK/RK. Rose' crouching JP/SP which will snuff Sakura's _if_ only the tip of Rose' fist connects (otherwise they will trade hits). Rose' punches will not stop any of Sakura's kicks. Rose' crouching FK/RK will stop Sakura's standing FK/RK if timed correctly, but will trade hits or be snuffed by Sakura's crouching kicks. Lesson: you can poke back at Sakura, but don't count on it. I've found that the best way to deal with a poking Sakura is to make your opponent commit to a slow move (such as Sakura's standing/ crouching RK) then jump in or do a level 3 Aura Soul Throw. Weave in and out of Sakura's RK range, then jump in with an attack once she sticks her foot out, Remember: move in and out of Sakura's RK range and not any closer -- Sakura can deliver a nasty combo if you're hit by so much as a SK. Go easy on the Soul Spiral. Don't use it to poke. Sakura's can easily catch Rose as she's recovering from it. Tip #3 -- Rose in the air; importance of proper distance Although Sakura has a plethora of moves that can stop an aerial attack, only a few of them are effective against Rose. Sakura's crouching FP can stop most aerial attacks if timed correctly, but most of Rose' attacks will snuff it (also with correct timing). The JP Shou'ou Ken is invulnerable in the first frames of animation and can be used against aerial attacks. Theoretically. I haven't seen anyone use it properly. The Midare Sakura is also seen time to time (especially as a "wake-up" move), but because it inflicts so little damage against jumping opponents its rarely used as anti-air. An anti-air tactic that Sakura players sometimes use is to jump and meet the opponent mid-air with a FP/FK. In particular, Sakura's jumping FP has slightly higher priority and damage that Rose' attacks, but has severely limited range. Rose can use her jumping FK and beat Sakura's jumping FP provided that only Rose' shin or foot hits Sakura. Lesson: when jumping at Sakura, use a FK but pretend you're trying to hit with a SK. If you're jumping at Sakura from outside the range mentioned above, always make sure to stick out a "deep" FK, which cannot be stopped by most of Sakura's attacks (but can be painful if you make a mistake). Sakura's walking speed is formidable, and there are players who take advantage of this by walking towards an opponent (who jumped forward without attacking or one who attacked early) and throwing. Go easy on the cross-ups. While Rose may use her jumping FK effectively as a cross-up against most other characters, Sakura is small enough and fast enough to simply walk under it and attack Rose from behind. Tip #4 -- Sakura in the air As mentioned earlier, Sakura's jumping attacks have a higher priority than Rose' attacks. If Sakura jumping on top of you (usually with a FP/FK) then block or do a level 1/2 Aura Soul Throw. Rose' other anti-air moves can be snuffed out by Sakura. If you can do a Soul Throw against a Jumping Sakura, then well and good. If you decide to block, Sakura will then do a) multiple crouching JP/SP/SK -> Hadouken. You can try to attack with a crouching FK/RK just before the Hadouken (since it can be rather slow) b) crouching JP/SP/SK -> Enzuigeri. Sakura's "flower kick" is rather fast, but its easy to spot because Sakura screams and flashes her underwear. Anything in Rose' arsenal will stop it, provided you react fast enough. c) crouching JP/SK -> crouching FK/RK. In my opinion, this is Sakura's best combo when blocked. Her crouching FK has fast recovery and will leave her within optimum range for poking. Once you block the crouching FK, get away by jumping back or poke with a crouching RK (hoping that Sakura won't do a Midare Sakura or Haru Ichiban). If your opponent is doing this combo, you can be sure that he's keeping an eye on your Guard Meter. d) throw. Wow. Sakura players love to throw because of her ground speed. Not much I can say about this except to expect it and do a crouching JP or throw also. e) crouching SK -> Sakura Otoshi. Usually only attempted if Rose' back is against a corner (see tip #5). Go easy on the Soul Spark. Sakura's jumping RK is angled similarly to Ken's jumping FK -- it's meant to catch fireballing opponents as they recover. Throw Soul Sparks at Sakura only at far ranges or as part of combos. Meet Sakura in the air only if you have range on your side. The closer Sakura and Rose are in the air, the more like that Sakura will win the exchange of blows. Tip #5 -- Watch out for the Sakura Otoshi In the Sakura Otoshi, Sakura jumps up a short distance then brings her fists down (looks like her jumping FP). In my opinion, this move is a distraction from her Shou'ou Ken, but there are some players who have discovered its applications. The Sakura Otoshi must be blocked standing. Used properly, this is the _fastest_ overhead in SFZ3. Typical pattern: crouching SK -> SK Sakura Otoshi. It can also hit an opponent up to three times in the air, _without_ being able to air-recover (again, only if used properly). I've heard that it can also swat fireballs. There's not much Rose can do about a properly timed Sakura Otoshi except to anticipate it and block standing or do a level 2/3 Aura Soul Throw. It's a good thing this damn move is hard to do. Tip #6 -- Keep your cool Sakura's Doshita is a taunt that does damage. It has short range but can be used against aerial opponents. It's main use, though, is not as an attack, but as psych-out. Don't get angry even if it hits Rose then your opponent says "Hey, that was worth the game -- I can lose now !". Tip #7 -- V-ism Sakura Agh. Horror of horrors. If you thought poking at Sakura was hard enough, wait 'till you get a whiff of V-ism Sakura. V-Sakura adds her <close> standing FP to her arsenal of pokes. This move is extremely long-ranged, cancellable, and can be used as anti-air when timed properly. It effectively nullifies any chance of poking at Sakura with anything other than a crouching FK. V-ism Sakura has a nasty guard crash combo (<slose> standing FP -> Shunpu Kyaku] repeat). This only works well in corners, though. Lesson: don't get cornered against a V-ism Sakura. If Sakura attempts this and Rose is midscreen, simply block the Shunpu Kyaku then hit back. Another nasty Sakura VC is her [<close> standing FP -> Shunpu Kyaku] repeat juggle. Fortunately, this combo has to be preceeded by a Shou'ou Ken, and Sakura has very limited means of landing _that_: Landing the Shou'ou Ken, method 1. If both Sakura and Rose are on the ground, Sakura has to be standing pretty damn close in order to land the Shou'ou Ken -- all of the Shou'ou Ken's hits must connect in order to start the VC. Lesson: don't get _that_ close. Method 2. As anti-air. Don't jump on Sakura if she has a Super Combo Meter charge. She can simply VC through your attack, hit Rose with the Shou'ou Ken, then start the juggle. This, I think, is most common way to start Sakura's juggle. Method 3. As anti-turtler. Sakura will start the VC, do an Enzuigeri -> Shou'ou Ken, then start the juggle. Lesson: once Sakura starts the VC, crouch-block but watch for the Enzuigeri. Method 4. As anti-anti-air. Sakura will jump on you, the activate the VC when your try an anti-air (such as a crouching FP or level 1/2 Aura Soul Throw), land the Shou-ken, then start the juggle. Lesson: just block -- even if Sakura doesn't have a Super Combo Meter charge she's better in the air than Rose is at counter-attacking her. If you're on the ground, blocked an aerial attack from Sakura, then she activates her VC, it's a safe bet that she _can't_ do Method 1 and will instead try Method 2, a corner crusher, or a mixture of the two. If you can't react fast enough when Sakura goes for the Enzuigeri, I suggest block standing up, never mind if Sakura can get her crouching kicks in. As I've said, she has to be pretty damn close to start her VC from Method 1, and if she tries to do crouching kicks she won't be able to start her juggle VC properly. Sakura's juggle VC is most dangerous when she's in a corner. Sakura may try to play defensively to lure you into jumping at her, then pop you with Method 2. If Sakura's Super Combo Meter is full, try to keep the battle mid-screen and don't let Sakura or Rose be cornered. When being juggled by Sakura's VC, actively attempt to air recover, especially when you've reached the corner. Sakura's VC is harder to pull off consistently that other characters with juggle VC, so always try to get away. In closing: Sakura is not an ARK clone. This is the biggest mistake anyone fighter her can assume. She a poker/guard crasher, but don't underestimate her ability to deliver extremely damaging combos. Use Rose slight range advantage. Against V-ism Sakura, try not to jump at her too often and avoid corners like the plague. * Rose Vs. Sodom * Threat - low Common -ism - X/Z (but I think V is his best) Moves of note - crouching SP (only dangerous with X-ism Sodom; long ranged, damaging poke) - crouching FP (only dangerous with X-ism Sodom; nasty poke and anti-air) - Jigoku Scrape (Sodom thrusts his jitte/katana; various uses, none of which it does well; mentioned here because it can be used in "ticks") - Butsumetsu Buster (Sodom jumps up and grabs; slow and predictable; immune to attacks low on the ground, such as crouching kicks) - Daikyou Burning (Sodom lunges forward then drags his opponent across the screen; slow, so slow; large damage if it hits..._if_ ) - Tengu Walking (Sodom rushes across the screen using his jitte/katana; must be blocked crouching; good recovery; used in "ticks") - Meido no Miyage (Super Combo version of the Jigoku Scrape; can be used as anti-air; juggles) - Ten Chuu Satsu (Super Combo version of the Butsumetsu Buster; similar in all respects but inflicts massive damage) Sorry, I can't provide a lot of anti-Sodom tactics, mainly because I haven't met any good SFZ3 Sodom players. He was more playable in SFZ2. It's been said that V-ism Sodom is tournament material (mainly because of his nasty VC's), but once his Super Combo Meter is depleted he's meat. Tip #1 -- Sodom, the comboless wonder The moment you block any attack from Sodom, immediately do a crouching SP (see "Frozen Rose"). Sodom is so slow that only he only has one reliable combo -- crouching FP -> RK Daikyo Burning/Jigoku Scrape. Everything else is blockable, and you can sneak in fast attacks. Tip #2 -- Sodom, master of ticks Sodom has couple of ticks he might try: Jugoku Scrape/Tengu Walking/Meido no Miyage -> Bustsumetsu Buster/Daikyo Burning/Throw. In order to avoid this, see tip #1 Tip #3 -- Sodom, the guy who can't do squat about "turtles" If you're feeling lazy, try sitting in a corner and wait for Sodom to come after you. If Sodom tries anything on the ground, poke with crouching attacks (also see tip #1). If he jumps on top of Rose, you can use the crouching FP, Soul Throw, or Aura Soul Throw to thwart him. In fact, the only moves to watch out for is the Butsumetsu Buster and Ten Chuu Statsu, both which Rose' crouching SP will stop. Tip #4 -- Sodom, the guy who can't handle pokes If you're feeling frisky, try treating Sodom like Ken in training mode and start poking at him as if he were a block of wood. Sodom's Regular moves suck so badly you can practically do anything to him. Tip #5 -- V-Sodom, the only Sodom to worry about The only Sodom worth playing, but also the rarest seen. V-Sodom has but two VC's, but they're enough. The repeated Jigoku Scrape can work as both as guard crusher and damage dealer from anywhere in the screen. Unlike Z/X-ism, you _cannot_ be lazy with V-Sodom. V-Sodom eats turtlers alive. You can't poke him either -- he'll just VC through your poke and start to bash Rose around. I haven't seen his other VC (repeated OTG Butsumetsu Buster) so I can't comment on it. When facing V-Sodom, your first priority is to let him lose his Super Combo Meter. Since poking won't do any good, the best approach would be to attack him repeatedly from the air. Rose pretty much outprioritizes Sodom from the air, but he may try to trade hits, so think a bit. Sooner or later he'll try to activate a VC to let Rose through, then start the repeated Jigoku Scrape. Block the Scrapes until your Guard is about to crash or 50% of his Super Combo Meter is left, the do a Zero Counter. With his Super Combo Meter gone he's now vulnerable to just about anything you want. In closing: Turtle and poke. * Rose Vs. Vega (Balrog in the Japan) * Threat - moderate Common -ism - V (Z if your opponent is playing Low-guard mode) Moves of note - all of Vega's crouching attacks (long-ranged stabbing pokes; low priority but fast) - Rolling Crystal Flash (also known as "Rolling Claw"; Vega rolls with his claw) - Scarlet Terror (Vega somersaults forward; anti-air; V-ism only) - Barcelona Attack (Vega jumps off a wall then claws at the opponent's head) - Izna Drop (Vega jumps off a wall, grabs his opponent, then slams him) - Backflip (Vega... backflips; brief invulnerability) - Kabe Hari Tsuki (also known as "Wall Climb"; Vega scales the wall; Vega stage only) - Sankaku Tobe (also known as "Wallspring"; Vega bounces off the wall at the height of his jump) - Rolling Izna Drop (Super Combo version if the Izna Drop) - Rolling Barcelona Attack (Super Combo version of the Barcelona Attack) - Scarlet Mirage (Super Combo version of the Scarlet Terror) - Red Impact (Vega stabs his opponent, throw him in the air, then stabs again) The poker from hell. Vega pokes until his life bar is greater than yours then proceedes to run around the ring avoiding you. Tip #1 -- Stay in Vega's face. Vega's primary strength is his speed and range. His priority sucks. Although its possible to hit him as he extends his claw, its better to simply get close to him and attack. I suggest jumping FP/SK/FK/RK -> crouching JP/SK -> crouching FK. Repeat. As his Guard Meter diminishes your opponent will panic and try to get away. Whenever Vega jumps, jump at him with a FK/RK. However, once Vega's cornered then he jumps back... (see Tip #3) So why not do a 2-in-1 after the jumping attack ? Why never more than three attacks ? Keeping Vega in a crouching position is a bad idea. You want to keep Vega alternating from a crouching and standing position, defending against an aerial attack and never being able to charge down. That is, never let him get the opportunity to use the Sky High Claw, Barcelona Attack, the Izna Drop, and his Super Combos. And why is this ? These attacks let Vega get away, creating distance between himself and Rose. Not only that, some Vega players are good enough to connect with these attacks. Rose, lacking a Dragon Punch, has very little defense against them. Her crouching FP may protect her from the Izna drop, but may trade hits with the Barcelona Attack. Also, I think Scarlet Terror is nullified if you keep forcing Vega to block standing. The command for the Scarlet Terror is listed as charge back -> forward -> kick. In my experience, it feels more like charge down-back -> forward -> kick. Therefore, keeping Vega standing means he won't be able to use his most effective anti-air at all. I'm not sure of this, though. Tip #2 -- Don't use Rose' FP, RK or Soul Spiral Avoid temptation. Rose' standing/crouching FP/RK as well as the Soul Spiral recover too slowly, a serious handicap when fighting Vega, who will likely poke you with a crouching SP if you miss in any of these moves. Even the Soul Spark and her Super Combos are risky. Rely instead on Regular moves. Tip #3 -- Watch that wallspring A favorite tactic of Vega players when being cornered is to back into the wall, jump backwards, then at the height of the jump wallspring behind their opponent. Luckily, Rose has both the range and the speed to follow him. Whenever you have Vega in a corner, jump at him (as in tip #1). When he jumps back, expect the wallspring. Instead of jumping after him, however, walk towards him. Jumping will only put you in a less than ideal position. Vega's wallspring has an effect of keeping his back towards you, making his attacks worthless. If all goes well, he'll land in front of Rose with his back turned. Unfortunately, he'll still be able to block (ask Capcom why this is so). Nail him with a couple of crouching FK to take a chunk out of his guard meter, then jump at him again. Tip #4 -- Non-turtle Vegas Ocassionaly you'll come across a Vega that's agressive, relying on their crouching attacks to keep the pressure up. A typical pattern is a jumping SP/FP -> crouching SK -> crouching FK -> (pause) -> jump/crouching SP. Attack during the pause, and the crouching SP will get you. Whenever you try to jump, they'll nail you with a crouching FP. Block too long and your guard will crash or they'll try a Special or a Super Combo, moves which Rose can't defend effectively against. The simplest (but not the easiest) way to get out of this trap is to trade hits while Vega's on the ground. Wait for the opponent to come close (just inside the range of his claw or right after blocking the jumping attack), then use your own crouching JP/SP. If you win the exchange or they block the attack, try to combo into a Soul Spark to push him away, then jump on him. If Rose and Vega trade hits, you have a slight advantage as Rose inflicts slightly higher damage (this assumes, of course, than Vega is not X-ism) and you also create some distance. You can always try to use the Zero Counter to get out of Vega's trap. Watch out though -- if he can trap you once, he will certainly try to do it again, so try to turn the fight into your favor immediately. Tip #5 -- If Vega's jumping, and you're on the ground, look out. Due to Vega's angle of attack and speed, Rose loses most of her priority when Vega is in the air attacking and she's on the ground. Good Vega players know this, and capitalize on it by constantly jumping on Rose with an attack followed by a ground barrage (see tip #4). Rose pratically has no reliable anti-air move against Vega. Her Soul Throw and level 1/2 Aura Soul Throw are unlikely to hit, and her crouching FP, at best, trade hits. Lesson: be also in the air whenever Vega jumps, then stick out an attack. Fortunately, no matter how good a Vega player is, Vega was not designed to be a combo machine. Almost all Vega players will fail to combo properly after a blocked aerial attack. Take advantage of this fact. The moment you block their jumping attack retaliate with crouching SP/FK -> Soul Spark. This may trade hits, though, but it's unlikely that you will lose the exchange. Most Vega players will be able to block, but at least there's some distance between the two of you, and you can now punish him. Another common Vega pattern is jump-in FP -> jump-up FP. Vega players do consecutive jumping attacks in the hopes that they'll catch their opponent crouch-blocking or blocking in the wrong direction (Vega's airspeed and long reach justify this). You can try trading hits with a crouching FP, but it's probably better not to let this situation happen in the first place. Lesson: keep up the pressure. Tip #6 -- Watch out for Vega's anti-airs Vega has three consistent anti-air moves: the crouching FP, the Scarlet Mirage, and the Scarlet Terror. He has other moves that can hit aerial characters, but they're not as effective as these three. The crouching FP is effective only if he's successfully pulled off a trap (see tip #4). If Rose has been cornered Vega's crouching FP is a real threat. Vega can nail Rose early in her jump. The crouching FP, however, is not as useful against a character already on the way down with an attack and is completely useless against opponents already on top of him. Lesson: never let Vega dominate the game -- keep on the offensive. The Scarlet Terror is only available to V-ism Vega. Don't worry about it though, as it doesn't inflict that much damage, has about equal priority to Rose' attacks, notoriously difficult to get the timing of (it can be air-blocked if used improperly). If you air-block the Scarlet Terror, immediately walk forward, then do a crouching SP/FK -> Soul Spark (or any other nasty combo). You can also try jumping at Vega just outside the range of the Scarlet Terror, then stick out a SK/FK just in case he'll try a crouching FP. The Scarlet Mirage is only available to Z-ism Vega. The Scarlet Mirage has a much higher priority than the Scarlet Terror, but inflicts less damage than what you would expect from a Super Combo. If your opponent insists on using the Scarlet Mirage, let him. Just take the damage then get back on his face again. Tip #7 -- V-ism Vega V-ism Vega has several easy, repetitive Variable Combos. The first is the repeating crouching RK, which can drain a lot from the Guard Meter and push Rose into a corner. The best response to this is to _let yourself be hit_. The crouching RK will cause Rose to fall (and therefore making Vega miss). As you get up, do a "wake-up" Super Combo (if you can) or crouching SK (Vega can't block and he has poor priority). The next is the repeating Rolling Crystal Flash, which is extremely damaging and drains a lot of Guard Meter when blocked. Fortunately, this can only be used effectively when you've been pushed into a corner. If Vega tries this away from a corner, you can poke at him with a crouching SP even as he's rolling. You can try a Zero Counter to get away from the Variable Combo. If you do so, remember to immediately attack when you land from the hop (in Z-ism). Unlike most tactics which suggest using a Zero counter only when your guard is about to crash, it's imperative to use the Zero Counter when you're about to reach a corner. Once in a corner the repeated Rolling Crystal Flash inflicts way to much damage to allow to continue for long. Tip #8 -- Turtling Though my main advise in fighting Vega is to be aggressive, it is possible to turtle against him. Go into a corner and keep on jumping backward with an attack. Due to his poor priority, he may have a hard time trying to hit Rose. Tip #9 -- L-mode Vega (arcades only, not PSX) L-mode Vega inflicts 99% damage with his Izna Drop and Red Impact. As such, L-mode Vega is often Z-ism. Keep in mind that L-mode has a very short Guard Meter, so keep on attacking Vega from the air and never give him the chance to use the Izna Drop. The Red Impact is a bit harder to deal with. As long as Vega has a level 3 charge, don't poke at him, and don't jump on him from a distance -- just try to keep on top of him. In closing: Vega's fast, but his priority really sucks. The best he can do is to try to confuse you. Keep up the pressure and he'll fold. * Rose Vs. Zangief * Threat - moderate to high Common -ism - all of 'em (Z/X may look painful at first, but wait till you get a blast from V) Moves of note - crouching JP (very fast knife hand; longest ranged jab next to Dhalsim's) - crouching SP (upward punch; good anti-air at medium range; worthless up close or against cross-ups) - FP/crouching FP (long ranged moves, incredible damage; very low priority) - crouching/standing SK (low kicks; not powerful, but used often in ticks) - standing FK (fast waist high kick with decent range, priority and recovery) - Russian Kick (Zangief stretches out his foot; very long range; slow; low priority; causes knockdown) - Body Splash (Zangief jumps and spreads his arms wide; excellent priority and covers a wide area; powerful all-around move) - Double Knee Press (Zangief jumps up and lands knee first; not that damaging but good priority) - Spinning Clotheline (Zangief spins in with arms flailing; very damaging and hits up to three times; mostly used as anti-air and anti-fireball; invulnerable torso; fast and slow versions exist, but the distinctions between the two are not that important to Rose) - Spinning Piledriver/Siberian Suplex/Siberian Bear Crusher/Final Atomic Buster (Zangief's various throws; he has others; after reading this strategy guide you shouldn't need to tell the difference between them -- just avoid them altogether) - Banishing Punch (a glowing backfist; tons of uses) - Aerial Russian Slam (Zangief jumps up and slams an aerial oppenent; not that accurate, but watch out if you're cornered) Zangief is my primary character and it pains me to cook up ways to defeating him. However, this is a Rose strategy guide, so here we go. Tip # 1 -- How to jump on Zangief; know how to deal with Zangief's Spinning Clothesline; go for the guard break Most people, once they have taken a beating from the Spinning Clothesline, are reluctant to approach Zangief from the air. That move can handle almost any aerial attack, especially from those aspiring to do a combo. The secret in dealing with the Spinning Clothesline is this -- don't go for a combo. When you jump at Zangief use a FK and make sure that only the bottom tip of Rose' leg connects with his head. In other words, if you're going to jump on Zangief, aim for the hair on his head -- land the jumping FK as early as safely possible. The Spinning Clothesline is useless against this. Once the jumping FK connects, blocked or not, immediately do several crouching JP, even before Rose' feet touch the ground. Why is this ? Once your opponent realizes that you're attacking early, he'll try one of his grabs, particularly the Spinning Piledriver or Final Atomic Buster, once you land. The JP is fast enough to prevent this from happening. Remember: start jabbing even before your feet touch the ground. After a couple of JPs, blocked or not, push Zangief bac farther with crouching SK -> crouching FK -> SK Soul Spiral/Soul Spark. Remember: if you use the Soul Spiral its important to make sure the tip of it touches Zangief, otherwise you'll pay. What's the point of this entire exercise ? As I've said, the Spinning Clothesline is effective against jumping characters. If you try to go for a deep aerial attack and Zangief isn't dizzy or otherwise incapacitated the Spinning Clothesline will stop it. Going for quick, light attacks will crash his guard sooner or later. It will also demoralize your opponent, as the Soul Spiral/Soul Spark will leave Zangief too far away to do anything. Zangief players will usually choose the Spinning Clothesline is their primary anti-air. Once they realize it isn't working they'll try to use the crouching SP. The crouching SP has decent priority and will knock Rose out of the air, provided that the her torso will land approximately at the tip of his fist. Jump at Zangief nearer this range, and the the crouching SP will miss. Jump at Zangief farther out from this range, and you'll trade hits. Once Zangief starts using the crouching SP you can either jump in from a slightly closer distance or start using jumping SK (as it SK doesn't leave as much of Rose' torso exposed while in the). Again, if you're jumping at Zangief, aim for his hair then follow up links. SK -> crouching FK -> SK Soul Spiral/Soul Spark. Unfortunately, the jumping SK has a trickier timing than the jumping FK, since Zangief can recover from a hitstun/ blockstun from it rather quickly. If you miscalculate, you'll end up in a grab of some sort after Zangief blocks. Do not even try to cross-up Zangief if you manage to knock him down or if he's crouching. The Spinning Clothesline will stop you. Crossing-up Zangief is pretty safe if he's just standing there, doing nothing. Again, even if you try a cross-up, aim for his hair. Another of Zangief's anti-air moves is the Body Splash. The only way for Rose to win in aerial battle with Zangief's Body Splash is is she happens to be at a higher position when they trade hits. Even then, Rose will still probably take damage, and if its X-ism Zangief Rose is facing you should try another tactic other than jumping (the damage X-ism Zangief inflicts borders on the obscene). Jumping on V-ism Zangief is a very hazardous proposition, since he has a 70% anti-air VC (see tip #9). Jump on V-ism Zangief _only_ if he has no Super Combo Meter charge. Zangief has other anti-air moves, such as the Rising Headbutt (Zangief jumps straight up and headbutts -- very powerful), standing RK (slow, piddly damage), his standing/crouching FP, the Banishing Punch, and the Aerial Russian Slam. These attacks may be a nuisance, but in general they aren't consistent enough to be a threat. Tip #1.1 -- Jumping on Zangief and going for the combo This totally goes against what I've said in tip #1. While it's usually suicidal to try to land a "deep" aerial attack against Zangief because of his Spinning Clothesline, its not impossible. With the right timing, Rose can land an aerial attack _through_ the Spinning Clothesline and hit him at about stomach level (which, for some reason, is invulnerable from ground-based attacks but not from aerial attacks). To do this you have to use an aerial move with a more vertical than horizontal hit area, such as FP. This risky tactic has two justifications: a) demoralize the Zangief player; b) the Spinning Clothesline can be tricky to do in the arcades (sometimes Zangief will go into his "missed throw" animation). Otherwise, stick to sure thing and hit the top of his head instead of landing deep. Tip #2 -- Dealing with the Body Splash and other aerial nastiness; reasons to keep your Super Combo meter full; avoiding the Spinning Piledriver version 1.00 What if you're on the ground, within jumping range, then Zangief jumps on you, maybe with a Body Splash or a Double Knee Press or even nothing at all ? Zangief players are confident on jumping on Rose, as her only consistent defense against moves like an early Body Splash is a level 2/3 Aura Soul Throw. Rose' crouching FP will trade hits with the Body Splash, and the Double Knee Press can beat it cleanly. Lesson: save your Super Combo meter not for a grounded Zangief, but for one that's jumping on Rose. The point here is to make your opponent think twice before jumping on her Rose. Once you demonstrate your ability to intercept the Body Splash with a level 2 Aura Soul Throw (I suggest using level 2 only, since level 3 might cause Rose to miss) Zangief players will be discrouraged. But what if you aren't skilled enough to use an Aura Soul Throw that fast ? Or what if you've used up your Super Combo meter ? Or what if, despite being knocked out of the air, Zangief still jumps at you ? As I've mentioned, Zangief is confident on jumping on Rose. They'll jump on her, counting on you to try to block whether or not they actually attack. Once you do, Zangief's mind games begin. Will he suddenly do a Spinning Pile Driver ? Maybe he'll do a SK first. Or maybe he'll do a SK -> Banishing Punch -> Final Atomic Buster ? If you read through the various Zangief character guides entire sections are dedicated to landing a Spinning Piledriver right after a jumping attack. Or tricking the opponent into jumping into an Aerial Russian Slam. These mind games are necessary to Zangief because his throws will never combo -- they can be jumped over, no matter how good the Zangief player. What I am about to tell you, however, lets you skip these Zangief tricks and effectively wipe out about a third of Zangief's offensive capabilities. If Zangief jumps at you then jump back. It's as simple as that. If Zangief is flying towards you with a Body Splash then jump back and air block. You do not want to be anywhere near Zangief once he's on the ground -- too many nasty things can happen, especially if you've been cornered. Jumping back creates distance he has to regain and completely avoides nearly all his mind games. Jump back as fast as you can and don't wait for Zangief to reach the apex of his jump before deciding to jump back. React too slow and Zangief can hit Rose on her way up. Tip #2.1 -- "You shouldn't have let Zangief come that close in the first place !"; the ground battle The necessity for tip #2 can be avoided by simply not being within Zangief's jump distance in the first place. This tip is appropriately numbered 2.1 because it's meant to be used by faster characters and not Rose. Rose can still make use of it for short periods within a match. Try to keep the battle midscreen and do your best to avoid being cornered. Weave in and out and keep the battle at the range of beyond the tip of Rose' crouching RK, never really coming closer. From this distance, poke at Zangief with moves other than crouching RK, Soul Spiral/Spark, or even Soul-piette. Miss intentionally (which you probably will, considering the distance). Zangief will do three things: a) poke back (see tip #7), possibly doing his version of "Creeping Rose"; b) jump; c) Banishing Punch in attempt to get closer (see tip #5). If Zangief jumps toward Rose then walk back then do a crouching RK as Zangief lands. Only the tip of Rose' foot should connect. Any closer, and Zangief will grab Rose off her legs (Zangief can do a Spinning Piledriver or Final Atomic Buster at about the distance of Rose' knees) as he lands. The idea here is not to sweep Zangief off his feet (although it's good if it does) but to wear away his guard meter. A blocked crouching RK should push him back into the proper distance. Tip #3 -- You've been cornered. If you've been cornered, the jump back strategy changes a bit. Instead of avoiding Zangief's aerial attack you have to air-block it. Right after you airblock Zangief's attack (only possible if you reacted to the Zangief's jump fast enough), even before you touch the ground, check the distance at which the two of you will fall. If you're within any of your crouching kick ranges (but outside his piledriver range) then start attacking even before touching ground so that your foot will stick out as soon as you land, and then immediately combo into a Soul Spark to push him away. If you think the two of you will land beyond the range of your attacks you can relax. Chances are, Zangief's only attacks that can reach you are his crouching FP and Russian Kick (see tip #7). If Rose is going to land within piledriver range push the stick forward and jam the kick buttons -- you have to do a long-ranged roll behind Zangief and away from the corner. Not a lot of people take know that you can roll right after an air-block, and consequently, fewer people know how to react to it. If you're in a corner with both you and Zangief on the ground (out of throwing range), take a breather. Check out his Super Combo meter. If it has a charge on it, don't jump or you'll eat an Aerial Russian Slam. If it's empty, check out your range and see if you can hit his head with a jumping FK without risking an exchange with his crouching SP (see tip #1). Tip #4 -- You've been cornered, at point blank range, facing an angry Zangief because you've been doing nothing but "turtling" for the past round or two Check your distance. If you're within crouching JP/SK range then do it, followed immediately with a crouching FK -> Soul Spark. Don't try to second guess what Zangief is up to. Just try to hit his legs and push him away. At this range I advise against jumping back (unless Zangief also jumps). The Banishing Punch or crouching JP will get you if try. Tip #5 -- Watch that Banishing Punch; using the Soul Spark. The Banishing Punch has three overlapping uses. First, it can be used to catch your Soul Spark. Second, it's a good setup for his various throws. Finally, it can be used to catch aerial opponents, paricularly those air-recovering. In order to avoid having having Zangief's green hand in Rose' face I suggest using the Soul Spark only if he's forced to block it, such as when used in a combo. Remember that Zangief has other ways around projectiles, more reasons on not to use the Soul Spark indescriminately. If you insist on using the Soul Spark at long range, at least try varying the speed. The Banishing Punch second use is more insidious. If Zangief tries to do a Banishing Punch near you, whether or not it hits, expect a throw afterwards. If you blocked the Banishing Punch, you have two options: immediately do a crouching JP/SK -> Soul Spark or you can jump back and stick your foot out (as if you're trying to hit Zangief on the way up). Do not try any slower move, such as a crouching RK, otherwise Rose will probably end up in a Final Atomic Buster. The safest bet would be to jump back with a kick. The jump will make Zangief miss his throw and a fast kick will stop his anti-air moves, even the Aerial Russian Slam. Do not jump forward unless you can _definitely_ hit Zangief on your way up and forward. If The Banishing Punch misses, it boils down to how fast your reflexes are. Your options to a missed Banishing Punch are the same: do a fast attack or jump back, only you have to be much quicker as there is no blocking animation to give you time to think. Do _not_ try a crouching RK. I've personally performed the Final Atomic Buster through sweeps more times than I care to count. If you've been knocked down (for example, right after being hit by Zangief's crouching RK) then Zangief does a Banishing Punch over Rose' prone body, it's a safe bet that he's trying to be sneaky. Try a wake-up level 2/3 Aura Soul Throw if you can, or jab like crazy as you get up. Incidentally, you can try to stop the Banishing Punch mid-move. I don't recommend it, but a crouching SP/FK/RK will work. Tip #6 -- ticks; the Zangief mindset against opponents within throwing range Here's the gist: Zangief will, first and foremost, try to land his powerful throws. However, because his Spinning Piledriver has a startup, his opponents can jump over it. To deal with potential jumpers, a good Zangief player will complement his ticks with attacks that are useful against jumpers. The most common tick Zangief will try is the crouching JP/SK-> Spinning Piledriver. If, at any time, you see Zangief do a crouching JP/SK, you have two options: a) jump or b) jab like hell. Jumping will automatically make the Spinning Piledriver miss. Do not jump forward. You will likely land behind Zangief and into a throw. Jumping will work once or twice. The next time you try to jump Zangief will do an anti-air instead of a Spinning Piledriver. Likely, a Spinning Clothesline, an Aerial Russian Slam, or a Banishing Punch. At this point, it becomes a guessing game. The Spinning Clothesline can be air-blocked, but if you just air-block then the Aerial Russian Slam can snag you. Practically any attack can stop the Aerial Russian Slam, so always stick out a foot. The Banishing Punch, on the other hand can snag Rose whether or not you attack. If Zangief does multiple crouching JP it can snag Rose as she tries to jump. Here are examples from a Zangief player's viewpoint. My standard pattern for Zangief is Body Splash -> crouching JP/SK -> throw. My opponents will often try to jump right after the crouching JP/SK, so I change the pattern to Body Splash -> crouching JP x 4 or Body Splash -> SK -> Banishing Punch or Body Splash -> SK -> <pause> -> Aerial Russian Slam. All three alternative patterns will punish a jumper. This brings us to the other option: jab. Remember: throws cannot combo. You can attack Zangief as he is recovering from his SK or if he's trying multiple crouching JPs then Rose will win the exchange. Do it fast enough, and you can hit him as he attempts to throw. Tip #7 -- The Zangief poking game. If your attacks are slightly out of range, he can still reach you with his Russian Kick, the crouching FP, or maybe even the standing FK. These moves will take a chunk out of your Guard Meter and considering that Rose has no dragon punch they'll likely try to poke her. If Zangief tries to poke Rose with punches, poke back with crouching JP/SP and laugh as Rose' tiny palm snuffs Zangief's fists. Because of Zangief's size, a lot of players don't even try to poke at his limbs. If he tries poking with crouching kicks do a crouching FK -> Soul Spark. Rose' kicks will out-prioritize Zangief's kicks around three out of four times. Zangief's FK, however, poses some problems. The standing FK is extremely fast, and when I'm playing Zangief I often use it to poke fireball-happy opponents and those whom I know have slow reactions. Rose can always try to trade hits, as her crouching FK has about the same range and her crouching SP has higher priority. Of course, if you have a full Super Combo meter, you can always try a Level 3 Aura Soul Throw if Zangief tries to poke. Tip #8 -- Dealing with the Zangief "Snuffle" I have a tactic with Zangief that I call "Snuffle". I jump at my opponent with a Body Splash then _immediately_ do another Body Splash. The "Snuffle" can be very confusing, as most players find themselves crouching and crossed-up or their Guard Meter depleted. If you ever meet a Zangief that plays like this you have two options: knock him out of the air with a crouching FP/Aura Soul Throw, or jump back (as in Tip #2 and #3). Using the crouching FP is usually a bad choice against Zangief's Body Splash, but the "Snuffle" technique requires Zangief to do the Body Splash very early, which places him in a less- than-optimal position. Timing is critical -- you must hit as soon as his feet leave the ground for the second Body Splash. Tip #9 -- V-ism Zangief V-Zangief differs from X/V in several points. The discussion below all assume that Zangief has a Super Combo Meter charge. Without a charge, V-Zangief is pretty ordinary, so Tips #1 to #9 should work. V-ism Zangief is the exception to the "throws can't combo" rule. V-ism Zangief will jump on Rose with an aerial attack, and if you block or are hit, he'll activate the VC, link several attacks together then do one of his throws. Or he can VC through your attack then combo. It's imperative that you not let yourself be placed in a situation that you're forced to block an aerial attack from the ground. Try your utmost to keep Zangief on the ground and away. Poke at him with crouching FK -> Soul Spark (the Soul Spiral is a no-no). If Zangief tries to jump over Rose' crouching FK jump back. If you air-block and even _think_ you're going to land within your crouching FK range immediately try to roll away (as opposed to trying to jab Zangief away as in Tip #3). Ironically, with a loss of a powerful ground Super, V-ism Zangief is at his most dangerous when you're jumping on him. He has an anti-air VC that can deal horrific damage (up to 70%) if you jump-attack him. Try this: jump on Zangief, then just air-block. If he tries the VC -> Clothesline -> Banishing Punch Combo Rose will air-block the Clothesline. Land and punish him. Zangief's anti-air VC is so powerful that some players actually pretend to be turtlers. They'll simply block all attacks so that they'll be pushed to a corner. Feeling confident, the opponent will jump on Zangief -- then Zangief will pop the VC. Keep this Zangief tactic in mind and don't go on all out offense simply because he's playing defensive. As I've said, just poke at him. Once Zangief's meter has run out, do not let him gain ground. He'll try to back off a bit (especially if Rose life bar is longer) then try to rebuild his meter with Clotheslines. Keep within range of Rose' crouching FK and poke away. In closing: Stay away. Poke away. ================ Other Rose Stuff ================ *** Rose SFZ3 Storyline *** These were taken from the American version (SF Alpha 3), so the guy with the claw is Vega (instead of Balrog), and the guy with the cape is Bison (instead of Vega). Introduction text: Rose is a mysterious woman who wields the mystic "Soul Power." She feels that Doomsday is fast approaching. She must seal Bison's power, even at the cost of her life. What fate awaits her in the end...? Fifth battle (Vs. Guy), pre-fight: Guy : You are Rose, are you not? It's not right to give up your life, even for your mission. Risking life and surrendering it are two different things. Rose : My mind is made up. Is it your place to try and help me? Even if so, your help is not anything that I need nor want. post-fight: Guy : "Soul Power".... Most impressive! But never underestimate his power. He's a man of such evil energy, even my kindred fear him. Rose : Thanks for the advice, but I must continue on my path.... Ninth battle (Vs Vega/Balrog), pre-fight: Rose : Vega! Warrior of Shadaloo! I've finally found you! You know where Bison is, don't you? Tell me! Vega : I have no reason to do such.... However.... As your name implies, you possess the beauty and thorns of a rose. So I shall adorn you in a pure red to suit your name better. post-fight: Vega : Remember.... Bison looks forward to your challenge.... I don't understand his thinking, and I probably never will.... Why would you dare to go to him, only to be slain in the end...? Rose : By reading your mind, I now know where Bison is.... Once divided, two separate fates unite. This is our fate.... I don't know what awaits us.... And neither does he.... Tenth battle (Vs Juli and Juni), pre-fight: Bison: You arrived earlier than I had anticipated.... Sorry, but I have another appointment.... Come back later. Rose : Bison! You can't avoid this.... You know you can't.... Since the day we met, fate knew it had to end in this way.... Bison: Ha ha ha ha! Don't be so melodramatic! Why don't you play with them if it's a challenge you desire? You have nothing to lose.... Except perhaps your life... (Bison leaves, to be replaced by Juni and Juli). Final battle (Vs Shin M. Bison), pre-fight: (As Bison comes down from the sky, Rose is in her blocking animation. Bison lands, and Rose throws him a tarot card, which Bison parries.) Rose : Did you truly believe they could defeat me? There's no escape...for either of us.... Bison: A rose without thorns means friendship.... Come now.... I should never have allowed you to grow thorns.... Rose : No! That obedience is what caused all this tragedy.... The game is over.... Let's finish this now!! post-fight: (Picture of Rose Soul Spiraling Bison in the chest.) Bison: Guwaaaaaaaahh!!! Rose : You are finished, Bison.... (Rose close-up) Rose : It wasn't supposed to end like this.... You were my master.... Now I must destroy you with my bare hands.... (Picture of Bison grinning) Bison: Guh.... You impressed me.... There was no other way to end this.... But...my "soul" will not be extinguished just yet! (Bison punches Rose in the gut. In the arcades, this picture is "cropped". In the PSX, Bison's blow can be seen going through the back of Rose). Rose : Haaaaaaa!! Ugaaaaaaaahhhhh!! Bison: Just imagine your future...! Can you see it?! Can you see who truly wields the power granted to us? It is YOU who stands victorious in the world of eternal doom!! Rose : ....!! ...What.... What is this...! This means...you will.... No...I myself...will.... Bison: Right...we'll return to where we belong...as was our wish! (Bison grinning) Bison: Two separate lives share the same...soul.... (Picture of Bison's face burning/melting) Bison: Guwaaaaaaaaahh!!! (Picture of Guy carrying Rose in his arms.) Guy : Hmm.... I was wise to come here quickly.... I felt something unsettling.... Her wound does not seem fatal but... ...she needs to be taken care of inmediately.... (Flash picture of Bison.) Guy : Hmm...! Was it all in my mind...? That man is gone.... He is no longer a threat to this world.... Then.... What could this be...? What is this sudden chill...? *** Rose' Outfits *** The data presented below are based on the PSX version. Rose has a tri-color scheme. Her hair and leggings are always a dark purple, while the color of her suit (which always matches her shoes) and her shawl are controlled by the button used when selecting which "-ism" to use... Square/Start button : dark blue shawl, grey suit Cross button : deep blue shawl, light blue suit Triangle button : yellow shawl, blue suit Circle button : yellow shawl, purple suit R1 button : white shawl, pink suit R2 button : white shawl, purple suit When there are two players involved (such as in a Challenge or in Dramatic mode), if the second player chooses the same color scheme as the first player, the second player is instead given the color scheme that closely matches the shawl color he wanted. For example, if both the first and the second player press the Triangle button, the first player would be given the yellow shawl and blue suit, while the second player would be given the yellow shawl and purple suit. The data presented below are for the arcade version. The color scheme used is determined by which -ism chosen and which button used to choose. X-ism, punch button: dark blue shawl, grey suit X-ism, kick button : deep blue shawl, light blue suit Z-ism, punch button: yellow shawl, blue suit Z-ism, kick button : yellow shawl, purple suit V-ism, punch button: white shawl, pink suit V-ism, kick button : white shawl, purple suit If there's a Challenger (or in Dramatic battle or Survival), and the second Rose picks the same -ism, she'll get the left over color scheme of that -ism, regardless of what button used. For example, if the first player were using the Z-ism punch button color scheme, then the second player (if he chooses also to play Z-ism) automatically gets the kick button color scheme. *** Win Symbols *** After winning a round, these big symbols appear under the lifebar. "V" - this is a white letter "V" over a red background - you won the round (finished off your opponent) with a Regular Move or a throw "S" - letter "S" over an yellow-orange background - you won with a Special Move or Taunt lightning "S" - a lightning bolt in the shape of an "S" over a blue background - you won with a Super Combo or VC "T" - a letter "T" over a purple background - the time round out and you had more Life Bar than your opponent These small symbols may appear to the right of the lightning bolt "S". "X" - you won with a X-ism Super Combo. "*" - you finished your opponent off with a Super Combo - one "*" for every level of Super Combo (eg. two "*" for a level 2 Super Combo). "V" - you won with a VC These small symbols may appear to the left of the big symbol. "P" - a red letter "P" meaning a perfect victory "C" - a yellow "C" for "Cheezy" -- you won the round round by hitting your opponent with a move that inflicts damage even when blocked (excluding throws). *** Win Poses *** Rose has 6 win poses after winning a round. You can select which pose she will perform by holding the appropriate button before she starts posing (otherwise, it's random). She says something for every pose, but I'm not so sure if I'm hearing it right (and, conseqeuntly, I'm not sure if my translation is right). Jab Punch - Rose closes her eyes, wags a finger, and says "Mada mada ne!" (Japanese, trans: Not enough !) Strong Punch - Rose extends her arm and lets her shawl fall to the floor. A ball of light spirals up and down the shawl. She say "Wariu ja nai !" (Japanese, trans: Not bad !) Fierce Punch - Rose creates duplicate images of herself to her left and right. She then closes her eyes and wags her finger, saying "Soreja dame !" (Japanese, trans: It is hopeless !) Short Kick - Rose creates a mirror image. They stand back to back, holding hands. Rose will open her eyes, looks you and smiles, saying "Daijobu ?" (Japanese, trans: Are you OK ?) Forward Kick - A large glowing Fool card appears. When the card disappears, Rose will be in a gypsy gown (the one she's wearing at her ending in SFZ2). In one hand, she's holding several cards; in the other, she's holding one card. A card is also sticking out between her breasts. She says "Ciao !" (Italian, trans: Goodbye !). Note: if you have a perfect victory, this will be her default pose instead of a random one. Roundhouse Kick - Wind blows through Rose' hair and scarf. She's holding a card (or is it an envelope ?) then drops it to the floor. (I can't make out what she's says afterward). *** Win Quotes *** In the arcades, or in the PSX with shortcut off, Rose will have quotes between round (provided she wins, of course). There are supposed to be eight, but I've got only three so far. "Every action has the potential to fill or empty one's heart." "A life shrouded in darkness is spent searching for the light." "If existence is a nightmare, one can only hope they are dreaming." ========== Miscellany ========== *** Glossary of terms *** In order to help newcomer SFZ3 'Net surfers, I've come up with this glossary because, personally, it took me a while before I got the hang of the jargon being used in the 'Net. "chain" -- I don't use this term. "Chains" can be used synonymously with "links" and "cancel" (terms which I prefer) "IMHO" -- In My Humble Opinion "mash" -- to press the buttons as fast as possible; a "masher", on the other hand, is a player who presses buttons without rhyme or reason "tier" -- Ranking, or how powerful a character is in comparison to other characters. Rose, IMHO, is mid-tier. "top-down move" -- Generally, while Rose is on the ground she can block an opponent's attack by pushing the stick down-back (called "crouch-block"). Some characters, however, have moves that cannot be crouch-blocked, but can be blocked by pushing the stick back (Rose is therefore standing as she blocks). I call these moves "top-down" moves, since this is what these moves look like. An example of a top-down is Ryu's Sakotsu Wari, where he takes a step forward then punches downward. "Shotos" -- Abbreviation for "Shotokan-type", referring to Akuma, Ryu, Ken, and to a lesser extent, Dan, Sakura, and Sagat. Generally, these are characters with some form of fireball and good anti-air moves. Shotokan is the school/style of Karate than is _supposedly_ practiced by these characters. I prefer to call the shotos "ARK" (for "A"kuma, "R"yu, "K"en) "scrub" -- Sometimes synonynous with "beginner", being called a scrub is an insult, generally meaning "without skill". I don't use this term. "cheap" -- Irritating fighting techniques. The definition cheap is subject to much debate. My advice is this -- never complain and do unto others what they do unto you (or do it first, if you don't mind being called cheap). "trade hits" -- being hit while attacking "snuffed" -- An attack that was stopped completely by another attack. For example, the Dragon Punch will snuff/stop a lot of attacks. Being snuffed is associated with the priority of the attack, as well as the timing. "Snuffing" an opponent, therefore, is synonymous to "winning the trade". "whiff" -- An attack that missed, on purpose or otherwise. "turtle" -- A player who is continually on the defensive, often jumping back and simply blocking. *** Personal Stuff *** If you're curious and don't mind my vanity, read on. Otherwise, skip to the last section (copyright notices). Hi. My name's Mondu_the_fat and I've been playing Street Fighter since SF2: World Warrior. I play regularly locally, as well as making trips four or five times anually to Japan (Tokyo only), Hongkong (everywhere), Vancouver, San Fransciso, LA, and New York to test my skills against players around the world. Do I have a life ? Yep. I'm about to graduate from Medicine at the Pontifical University of ?!?! (heh, there's only one school that describes itself as "pontifical") and am currently aiming for a Pediatric Residency. My favorite characters: Rose, Zangief, Dhalsim, Honda (it's nice to see the last three made a recovery in SFZ3). I detest Akuma and make it my mission to squash any Akuma player I see (which, unfortunately, I can only do in SFZ3). My favorite fighting games are SFZ3, SFEX+alpha, and SSF2: NC. I don't play much of the Marvel games (I only play to humor my friends). I never touched the first two SF3 games, but I do spend money on SF3:3 in the arcades. I play Tekken and Virtua Fighter only in the PSX and Sega and not in the arcades. I'll play KOF as soon as a fast version comes out in the PSX. Finally, I wouldn't touch a Midway game even if my life depended on it (for fear of being laughed at to death). I was an avid programmer in the 80x86 platform and tinkered around with 8- and 16- bit machines (such as the SNES) prior to studying Med, but I haven't fooled around with an IBM-type computer for nearly six years (we use a typewriter in the hospital -- for heaven's sake, my own computer still runs on DOS !). I program in C++, Turbo Pascal, and 80x86 Assembly. I have no idea how Visual Basic works, as well as any programming language specific to Windows. My other hobbies include MTG, In Nomine, 3D animation, and med missions. I am currently in the process of writing three books (whose topics have, strangely enough, nothing to do with any of my hobbies -- I hope to get them published before internship). Comments, questions, and criticisms (constructive or otherwise), can be e-mailed to: firstname.lastname@example.org If anyone does send criticism of the type that falls under "otherwise" please do try to be polite. Greetings and thanks to: - Team Irreg... We're clerks this year ! - Interns and Residents... Ok, so I was supposed to be a clerk three years ago. - the people of alt.games.sf2... the place to go if you love CAPCOM fighting games (having skin thicker than shoe leather and/or a masochistic streak required) - SM WOF regulars... Nick, Jay, and the rest, who all play SNK games, so will probably never read this document - Team Extreme... now defunct, where the hell are you guys ? - Copycat Boys... also defunct, and will laugh at me if they see this document ("SF pa rin ?! Grow up !") - Kailu Lantis... from whose document I got the Rose' ending from (w/o his permission) - Kao Megura... from whose document I got a lot of move names (also w/o his permission) - Greg Dawson... from whose whose from whom I got a couple of combos from (also w/o his permission) *** Copyright Notice *** Nasty bit of legality that seems to be required in the 'Net: Street Fighter and all things related to it are owned by Capcom. This document, however, is still mine. Anyone may distribute it freely in any form as long as the content is unedited and no profit be made. Similarities to this text to other like it are purely unintentional (or are Public Domain), and no infringement to ownership is challenged by me. If anyone out there feels that I plagiarized some other work, leave me mail and I'll give credit where credit is due.