Learn Footsies to Make Your Ground Game Not Suck

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  • SystemSystem Joined: Posts: 508,676 admin
    These are great articles, and I thank you very much for the hard work you have put in it. I am especially glad that you have added video examples because the concepts are very difficult for many to understand and to pick up on. There's lots of info here that all of us can learn from.
  • LBLB HyungOppa Joined: Posts: 1,760 mod
    btw maj, this is exactly what i was hoping to do, and you did it much better than what i had imagined. good job!!! i love these and keep them coming.
    Ryu only! Gold league for now and I stream my matches at twitch.tv/hyunglee/. Hope to get ranked (top1000) soon!
  • MajMaj CvS2 Combo Collector Joined: Posts: 2,073
    Really? For a particular game or just in general?
  • MajMaj CvS2 Combo Collector Joined: Posts: 2,073
    Thought i'd write up a basic overview on hopkicks, because they're important to the landscape of footsies even though only a few characters have them.

    Street Fighter Footsies Handbook, Chapter 8

    Anyone who's been following this article series should understand immediately how buff a good hopkick can be. If you got 'em, use 'em. If you don't, figure out a way to deal with 'em.
  • FulaaniFulaani Of terrorist descent Joined: Posts: 2,555
    awesome as always maj.
    zoning took an indefinite hiatus
  • staticjackstaticjack Joined: Posts: 20
    Agreed...... Good Stuff 4 sure!!!!
  • JazzJazz Pagua Sonfa Joined: Posts: 3,087
    maj...

    GDLK

    seriously i feel smarter after reading these in rapid succession. This kind of knowledge and display trains players how to analyze and read a match more efficiently.

    carry on sir.

    whats interesting is that there are a few of these tricks and elements that players do unconsciously, but its interesting to see the psychology behind these tactics and this is really a good way for some players (esp intermediate level players budding into advanced play) to really step up their game behind the scenes.
    I think some ppl should join the madden community
  • Ink-Ink- Rapper James Joined: Posts: 156
    Maj, if we lived in Gotham City, Batman would have you on his team.

    Batman couldn't have said it better himself, anyways amazing thread.
  • berserkotaku45berserkotaku45 winter is coming Joined: Posts: 1,333
    very very good stuff, just reading it makes me feel like a better player now lets see if i can put it in my game
  • MajMaj CvS2 Combo Collector Joined: Posts: 2,073
    Even though jumping is absolutely a part of footsies, i've been a little hesitant to talk about it because i believe the ground game has to come first. But crossups are a major part of offensive footsies so i think this is a good time to look into reliable ways of setting them up.

    Street Fighter Footsies Handbook, Chapter 9

    Hopefully everything's explained clearly but i added a few notes at the end too.
  • MajMaj CvS2 Combo Collector Joined: Posts: 2,073
    The last chapter covers the x-factor which makes everything run smoothly: Randomness.

    Street Fighter Footsies Handbook, Chapter 10

    You need randomness to throw your opponents off track so they can't tell what you're trying to bait. Without it, your whole gameplan becomes dry and your intentions become predictable.
  • gigabytegigabyte Joined: Posts: 631
    great articles!! gotta read up
  • Saikyo JoeSaikyo Joe that awkward moment Joined: Posts: 2,458
    Good stuff Maj I've been reading these when I get the time, some of it doesn't make sense at first but the more I read and play the more I start to get it.

    Also, don't mean to bother you, but for quick reference you probably should put all the links on the front page :sweat:
    Saikyo Joe does whatever the hell Saikyo Joe wants to do - Luc

    The answer to your question is no.
  • MajMaj CvS2 Combo Collector Joined: Posts: 2,073
    I'll try to add a page containing links to all the articles soon, but until then you can just click on the Strategy category.
  • MajMaj CvS2 Combo Collector Joined: Posts: 2,073
    Shoto Whiff s.LK Secrets Revealed!

    Ever wonder why Ryu, Ken, and Akuma players throw out light kicks[/url] during tense matches? I've seen this question come up on several forums and thought i'd try my hand at explaining it. In fact, the underlying concept of misdirection is actually what [url=http://sonichurricane.com/?p=1334 was about.

    Whiffing s.LK is a fake, but it's not meant to bait jumps. Nobody's going to jump at you because you're whiffing s.LK; that would be ridiculous. What causes opponents to jump are the fireball patterns you set to manipulate them. They jump because they think a fireball is coming.

    Now here's the key. They're only going to jump if they feel pressured on the ground. You'll never make this happen by standing around. You have to throw those fireballs - enough of them to get in their head. It's risky but you won't get anywhere without following through on your gameplan.

    But even on your best day, you're going to guess wrong sometimes. You're going to stop throwing fireballs expecting them to jump, and they won't jump, and you'll end up standing around looking indecisive. That lets them off the hook mentally. It gives them a chance to take a breath and regain composure. Obviously you don't want that.

    That's where whiffing s.LK comes in. It makes you look like you're doing something even when you're doing nothing. It doesn't maintain real momentum the way throwing a fireball would, but it does sustain psychological momentum in those spots where you think throwing a fireball might get you killed.

    Make sense?
  • Dr. HDr. H Joined: Posts: 274
    Maybe it's not just about psychological pressure, there you are waiting to punish a fireball, then you hear your opponent tapping a button and Ryu doing some other thing that's not standing, your untrained senses may just force you to jump. 90% of shotos players don't simply press lk, they do Qcf+LK so it has the chance to trick your peripheral vision.

    Good articles, congrats.
  • MajMaj CvS2 Combo Collector Joined: Posts: 2,073
    That is psychological though. Not like that s.LK represents any real threat to you whatsoever. I mean, even Daigo likes to whiff s.LK in that situation. Japanese arcades have linked cabinets so they don't even see each other's hands or hear the buttons. Though you're probably right, i bet those tactics are more effective when you're playing right next to someone.
  • error1error1 Joined: Posts: 421
    so why is it LK? wouldn't a Lp be safer? Larger range of motion? anyway seems worth a nomination
  • MajMaj CvS2 Combo Collector Joined: Posts: 2,073
    Yeah, s.LK looks like you're doing more which makes it look more threatening. This is a relatively minor thing in the grand scheme. You don't have to do it. I mean, it never makes a huge difference. Sometimes it makes no difference at all. But a lot of players do it anyway - partly because they buy into "every little bit counts" and partly because they're mimicking players they learned from.

    Anyway i wrote another article in the footsies series, this time as a tactical overview on projectiles.

    Street Fighter Footsies Handbook, Supplement A

    It's more abstract than previous installments, but it was too big of a concept to leave out and too big of a concept to cover in one article. In the future i'll try to come back to fireball footsies with a different approach.
  • SystemSystem Joined: Posts: 508,676 admin
    Nice article!
  • SasakiSasaki *~ Stardust Drop ~* Joined: Posts: 1,343
    Whiffing s.LK is a fake, but it's not meant to bait jumps. Nobody's going to jump at you because you're whiffing s.LK; that would be ridiculous. What causes opponents to jump are the fireball patterns you set to manipulate them. They jump because they think a fireball is coming.

    But when playing a character like Vega, people always try to jump over your pokes, knowing that, even if you recover in time, your only option is to block, which is bad for Vega. So why not whiff a cr.lp, which on startup looks exactly the same as cr.mp, to bait a jump, then air to air the opponent?
    "You should be able to win a match without using a single special or super move. No normals, no game, know normals, know game, I tell you!" - Jerry "normal" Bell
  • IggyWhiteIggyWhite The man with the plan. Joined: Posts: 214
    ^^

    The point of Maj writing these great articles in the first place is to look at very specific situations. While in the context of the Shoto fireball game, this article can be applied to any character as long as the context is understood.

    To put it simply, understand the idea behind the article and apply it in a way that works for you.

    Maj, never stop with these please.
  • deadfrogdeadfrog Joined: Joined: Posts: 6,787
    the underlying concept of misdirection
    In reference to such simple practices of distraction (and not grander plans of deceit and/or disguise of true intent), I really liked a description I read in a thread last year of "[throwing] out a ton of 'useless' moves during footsies" as "simply [jacking] up the signal to noise ratio."
  • MajMaj CvS2 Combo Collector Joined: Posts: 2,073
    Nice quote, but it's kinda backwards isn't it? Random moves would be noise in that metaphor. I like the idea though.

    Since i wrote so many articles about footsies, i thought i should write one about avoiding them entirely.

    Street Fighter Footsies Handbook, Supplement B

    This one's basically about blocking, because sometimes it's the best thing to do. There's also some stuff about crazy rushdown, which is always fun to do and watch, but you're gonna get your heart broken sometimes.
  • MajMaj CvS2 Combo Collector Joined: Posts: 2,073
    Finally got around to putting together a Footsies Handbook index. Still working on the last article.
  • MajMaj CvS2 Combo Collector Joined: Posts: 2,073
  • dogfacedogface Peke Suto Joined: Posts: 1,241
    Maj,

    When are you getting your PhD in this stuff? I want to come to your graduation and take pics with your parents.

    -Vic
  • El ToroEl Toro Patience Joined: Posts: 472
    My zoning game is weak so this really helped out, thanks :tup:
    Viva!
  • ShadowKnight28ShadowKnight28 KKZ Up In Ya Grill Joined: Posts: 109
    You Sir, are a God amongst men. Thank you for imparting your knowledge on us mere mortals to make us less scrubby.
  • MajMaj CvS2 Combo Collector Joined: Posts: 2,073
    With the Footsies Handbook completed, i finally have the opportunity to explore various topics which i feel are important to becoming a solid all-around Street Fighter player. Right at the top of that list is the ability to land difficult throws in clutch situations.

    I think the best way to teach yourself that particular skillset is by forcing yourself to pick up a dedicated grappler character. You'd be amazed how much you can learn from using Zangief for two weeks. These are things that come up all the time with basically every character, but not consistently enough to force you to learn them.

    However, if you make Zangief or Abel your main character for just two weeks, you'll pick up all of that stuff along with a whole new way of looking at fighting games. So read through this article, give Gief/Abel/T.Hawk/Hugo/Raiden a try, and let me know what you think: Grappler Training
  • Tao JonesTao Jones Industrial Average Joined: Posts: 189
    The easiest person to play footsies against is that intermediate player who hasnt quite given up on footsies, but doesnt play footsies to win. He doesnt move around much, he doesnt keep track of long-term patterns, and he plays almost exclusively on a reactionary level. Hes not trying to get you to do anything specific; hes simply reacting to where youre standing. He doesnt think his footsies are good enough to help him win whole matches. Hes being lazy.

    Playing footsies with that casual mindset is the mental equivalent of being backed into a permanent corner. If youre hesitant and uncertain, then your wins will come from luck and your losses will be inexorably fitting.


    This describes me to an absolute "T"

    I just don't really know how to move beyond this level. I feel like I never use footsies, don't have any kind of gameplan or way to 'outsmart' the other guy because I don't even keep track of my own 'long term patterns'. Thanks for the footsies handbook. I have a lot of work to do on this. My wins for the most part come from luck...getting wins that come from strategy and gameplan is the pandora's box that I'm looking for to get out me out of the intermediate category.
  • LethalmindLethalmind Joined: Posts: 35
    Threads like these are the reason that I'm steadily falling in love with the SRK community. The dedication here is overwhelming. I've been casually playing fighting games for years now, and it's honestly mindblowing to see just how deep the thought process for things that are almost instinctive really is. I've never taken into account how big concepts like these are even though I play SFIV almost everyday. Thanks for the articles Maj. I haven't gone through them all yet, but I'm already becoming a better player for taking the time to read through.
    My Youtube Channel: http://www.youtube.com/EvLive
  • MajMaj CvS2 Combo Collector Joined: Posts: 2,073
    At a certain point, i think everyone starts getting a little self-conscious about how their matches "look" and whether they convey a level of expertise. Though nowadays with match videos everywhere, a lot of people actually begin by mimicking certain players right off the bat.

    Anyway, Mariodood brought up an interesting question about what you should when you attempt to bait an uppercut and your opponent doesn't go for it. Obviously that stutter step is going to interrupt the flow of the match and probably kill whatever momentum you might've built up to that point.

    So i wrote an article about that subject because i think it's important to keep your mind on the big picture, even if that means sacrificing momentum or sometimes ending up with "ugly" matches: Sustaining and Surrendering Momentum

    Now that i think about it, it's funny how often you hear professional basketball players talking about grinding out "ugly wins." That concept totally applies to Street Fighter as well, and it's just as important to find ways to win those games too.
  • DestinDestin Ziggy Stardust Joined: Posts: 1,181
    Hmm, one addition I might have added to the rushdown guide balance between difficulty getting in versus willingness to give up momentum. If your character has alot of trouble getting in but can really take the match with one chance, it is more advantageous to bait dp's/reversals less frequently. Likewise, if your character has little trouble getting in and starting a rushdown, there should be more willingness to play defensive and bait out supers ect.

    In your example with the neutral jump, if I was playing thawk in ST and that situation arose, I would likely neutral jump and go for the win, getting in again would be difficult to impossible. If I was playing chun li, I would play more conservative and block, pressuring with my gameplan would be very feasible to reestablish later in the game.

    Perhaps that was out of the scope of the article, or it was painfully obvoius to any veteran player, even subconscious at this point, but I do feel alot of newer players might apply the advice too broadly.
    I am the hero.
    HERO KENZAN!
  • walnut shrimpwalnut shrimp Joined: Posts: 375
    anyone have notable matchups with ugly, awkward moments? chun vs blanka can get brutally indecisive when i play lol

    blanka doesn't want to do anything frame disadvantaged and i don't want to walk into a blanka ball or river run. i dont want to throw fireball so he can ex ball through it. i want to bait a jump but he doesn't do anything and i got nothin cuz he's still on downback. i block a blanka ball but fail a frame perfect punish etc etc
  • superlollosuperlollo S Tier Joined: Posts: 2,967
    anyone have notable matchups with ugly, awkward moments? chun vs blanka can get brutally indecisive when i play lol

    blanka doesn't want to do anything frame disadvantaged and i don't want to walk into a blanka ball or river run. i dont want to throw fireball so he can ex ball through it. i want to bait a jump but he doesn't do anything and i got nothin cuz he's still on downback. i block a blanka ball but fail a frame perfect punish etc etc


    blocking river runs and balls is actually A LOT easier offline and chun's fb recovers pretty fast, blanka shouldn't be able to hit you much with ex ball unless you get predictable. He has to anticipate it to punish, just vary your patterns.
    Things that should be patched:
    - People that constantly complain that there should be a patch.

    by. J.Scogz
  • Shin KazuyaShin Kazuya Fist of a God! Joined: Posts: 140
    Hey guys!

    I don't know where to ask this to get a answer, so I'll ask here...
    Where can I find a plinking thread??
    Thanks in advanced!
    Oh! Sorry, this isn't Tekken... LOL
  • TwistTwist RadarTrap Joined: Posts: 698
    Where can I find a plinking thread??

    Right here.
  • SasakiSasaki *~ Stardust Drop ~* Joined: Posts: 1,343
    Maj? You okay with me translating the article into german?
    "You should be able to win a match without using a single special or super move. No normals, no game, know normals, know game, I tell you!" - Jerry "normal" Bell
  • Shin KazuyaShin Kazuya Fist of a God! Joined: Posts: 140
    Oh! Sorry, this isn't Tekken... LOL
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