Guilty Gear Xrd -SIGN- is here. This is my favorite fighting game series, and the one by which I entered the competitive scene. I hope you'll not mind if I leave a few words about it, followed by some links, additional help for people who are starting to play, and a FAQ. In short, I'm very interested in enjoying this game at a high level, and in helping the community grow. If you have any questions about this game or if you ever want to play, please let me know.
For those unfamiliar, this is an anime style game that brings together many elements; the importance of ground game and spacing as in Street Fighter and The King of Fighters, the freedom and craziness of games like Marvel, zoning, setups, okizeme, and so on. Its combo system is interesting, and has some similarities to and inspiration likely derived from Darkstalkers and Street Fighter Alpha, though it certainly has a modern anime feel by now. At the end of the day, I find it's a unique blend that ends up being its own game, with a reasonable level of entry and learning curve (despite what you may have heard) but a fairly high ceiling. It rewards outplaying the opponent, and encourages uniqueness with its freedom and options. Not to mention, it is stylish and cool (in all aspects) as all get-out. Can we please play this game?
EXTENDED JP TRAILER:
OFFICIAL U.S. SITE:
COMPETITIVE COMMUNITY SITE:
DUSTLOOP WIKI (with explanations of the mechanics, character explanations, frame data, and more):
JP WIKI (with bread and butter combo videos, frame data, and more):
SEARCHABLE MATCH VIDEO DATABASE:
(There are also video threads in the subforums on Dustloop!)
BROKENTIER'S SIMPLE CHARACTER GUIDE. (This explains character traits and general strategy, with videos and examples of high level players. This is for Guilty Gear XX Accent Core, not Xrd, but can still apply if you are trying to understand the returning members of the cast and choose a character to play.):
Some more help for those who are starting to play Guilty Gear (which has now been released both in Japan and North America). This post has the button layouts, some basic training recommendations, a link with basic combos, and a rundown of the DLC options and release dates.
The button layout: http://www.dustloop.com/wiki/images/8/89/GGXRD_Controls.png
Type A is the original arcade layout, and the one most tournament players use, including myself. I like to think of it as curving up from the bottom left the top light, in order of lightest/quickest to heaviest/slowest, with Dust below. P/K/S/HS are not universally like that for the entire cast, but it is generally so. Additionally, the chain system tends to use this order, although chains are particular to each character. There's no obligation to use any particular layout – all of the types in the image that I linked to above are even available in the arcade version! If you use pad, the Default setting is the one typically used, and you might want to set the some of the in-game macros to shoulder buttons.
I recommend checking out the in-game Tutorial, Challenge, and Mission modes to get a basic understanding of the game and it's mechanics. Please note that you can change the Button Display to show P/K/S/HS/D instead of the PlayStation buttons. Also, please note that you can view a demo of what you're trying to do in these modes by pausing and going to "Sample", or setting a button to "Play" and pressing that button. The Dustloop wiki is also very helpful for understanding everything: http://tinyurl.com/xrddlwiki
. Another important resource is the videos of top players and Japanese arcade play online. You can search on YouTube, check the Dustloop forums, or check the awesome, searchable Keep on Rockin' database: http://keeponrock.in/match/search_form#content
IMPORTANT: Until you're familiar with how recovery works, if you are practicing combos in training mode, set Recovery to Backwards and set Stun Recovery to Quickest Possible! After certain points, it can be possible to tech in the air, or recover from stagger, so these settings allow you to make sure that your combos will really work, basically.
Beyond that, it's definitely a good idea to try out your character's moves, see what movement options they have, and start determining their strengths and weaknesses in general. Please note that forward+P is almost universally an anti-air with upper body invulnerability, crouch+D is usually a sweep, and neutral+D is a universal overhead. Learning to implement these and knowing how to combo from all of them (if possible) is very important.
Learning some basic combos, and then figuring out how to arrive at opening up your opponent to land those combos would be good as well, of course. Here are some basic combos for all characters: http://www.youtube.com/user/4GamerMovie/search?query=GUILTY+GEAR
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS. (As posted by Pichy on the Dustloop forum, with additions and modifications that I made! The parts that I edited or added are in [brackets].)
WHEN DOES THE GAME RELEASE?
December 4th in Japan. [Since the time zone in Japan is way ahead of us, this means the game will actually be available on the afternoon of December 3rd!] December 16th in the United States.
Some time in 2187 for PAL territories.
WHAT'S THIS GAME ON?
Playstation 3 and Playstation 4. Both release at the same time and can play with each other online!
The PS3 version runs at 720p and 60fps. This is identical to the arcade version.
PS4 version runs at 1080p and 60fps. If you are purely after visuals, go for this version.
IS THERE A PSN VERSION?
YES. [The Japanese version will be released on December 4th in Japan, which will be the afternoon of December 3rd in the U.S. The U.S. version will be released on December 16th.]
[IS THE JAPANESE VERSION GOING TO BE IN ENGLISH?]
[Yes! There's a free patch that adds an option for English! We're quite lucky with that, as it's not commonly this way.]
[HOW DO I GET THE JAPANESE PSN VERSION?]
[You have to make a Japanese PSN account, separate from whatever any other accounts you may have. I like this guide: http://www.japan-codes.com/how-to-create-a-japanese-playstation-network-account-on-a-ps3/
. This guide offers a slight variation on the initial sign-up process, and has much more information about the system, navigation, etc.: http://www.dustloop.com/forums/index.php?/topic/6703-importing-101/.]
[HOW DOES ACCOUNT SHARING OR HAVING ONE ACCOUNT ON MULTIPLE SYSEMS WORK ON JAPANESE PSN?]
[One account can be active on up to two systems at a time.]
[WHAT ABOUT THE DISC VERSIONS?]
[These have the same release dates, with the exception of the U.S. limited edition, which is estimated to be delayed by a week or two, roughly.]
ARE YOU SURE THE PS3 VERSION WON'T HAVE A GIMPED FRAMERATE?
If it did it would make the online play between versions amazingly unstable and probably be completely unplayable. Let's trust in the dev this far at least.
WILL MY PS3 STICK WORK ON THE PS4 VERSION?
At this point, no. Not at all. Madcatz and Hori both have PS4 sticks available for purchase at this time.
[Alternately, it is possible to have an arcade stick modified to work on PS4.]
SO WILL ALL TOURNAMENTS BE USING THE PS4 VERSION THEN?
What console a game runs on is entirely up the event organiser's discretion. At this point I'd wager on events for at the very least the first year sticking to PS3 since they already own the console and people have sticks for 'em. If there's one thing TOs don't usually have, it's money to burn.
[ I also think PS3 will be the standard, since the game is the same, but is less expensive and much more widely accessible.]
WHAT ABOUT XBOX 360/ONE?
Japan hates the Xbox, so no release of any kind at this time. Don't expect one down the road either, honestly.
[ It's a shame. The PS3 is owned by many, and is relatively inexpensive these days, though, thankfully.]
WHAT ABOUT PC?
Japanese devs aren't exactly fond of supporting the PC for a myriad of reasons. If one comes out, we'll be just as pumped as you!
[WHAT ABOUT THE DLC, INCLUDING THE CHARACTERS, INCLUDING SIN, ELPHELT, AND LEO?
The DLC is cross-platform between PS3 and PS4, meaning that if you buy it for one system, you will have access to it through your account on the other.
The game itself is NOT cross-platform, so separate versions must be bought if you'd like to have it for both systems.
DLC between the North American version of the game and Japanese and Hong Kong versions does not work. In other words, you can't download Elphelt for free on NA PSN to be played on a copy of the game bought on JP PSN. You'll need to get DLC that corresponds, regionally, to whichever version of the game you have. (That said, I have heard that the HK and JP versions actually have interchangeable DLC.)
Sin can be unlocked for 200,000 W$ in the game, or purchased online.
Elphelt is available as a free download for players with the North American version from 12/16/2014 until 1/5/2014. For those with the Japanese or Hong Kong version, she is available as DLC.
Leo will be available for purchase in North America from 12/23/2014. He's available for purchase in the JP and HK stores as of 12/16/2014.
North American DLC schedule:
Sin Kiske (Character) – 12/16/2014
Elphelt Valentine (Character) (FREE until 1/5/2015) – 12/16/2014
System Voices (all minus Leo Whitefang) – 12/16/2014
Leo Whitefang (Character) – 12/23/2014
Leo Whitefang System Voice – 12/23/2014
Character Colors [colors 7-12] (individual and bundles) – 12/23/2014
System Voice Bundle – 12/23/2014
Christmas Colors [color 13] (FREE from 12/23/2014-1/13/2015) – 12/23/2014
PSN Avatars – 12/23/2014
PlayStation®Plus Colors [color 14] (available 1/13/15-2/10/15) Free for PS+ subscribers – 1/13/2015
As of 12/18/2014, all DLC is available from the JP PSN Store, with the exception of the PlayStation Plus colors, which should be available from 1/8/2015-2/3/2015.]
WAIT, THAT'S IT FOR THE ROSTER? WHERE'S ORDER SOL/JAM/JOHNNY/BAIKEN/BRIDGET /ABA/DR. PARADIGM/LEOPALDON/WATSON THE MAGIC RABBIT?
Sin, Elphelt and Leo are the only additions to the Arcade version's roster announced at this point. As soon as ASW announce any other character, we'll be just as excited to know as you!
IS THE NETCODE GOOD?
[The way it is set up involves choosing your region on several different levels, then going into a room that has four setups. You can then choose to wait line at any of the setups. It's very much like going to an arcade, except it's online. Pretty awesome way to do lobbies.
Connectivity seems to be varied. There's a patch coming to fix the occasional desynching between players who are using different language settings, add direct player invititations, and possibly to improve the netcode in general. EDIT: The 1.02 patch is out in North America, and should be coming to other regions soon!]
WILL EACH COUNTRY'S RELEASE BE LOCKED OUT OF PLAYING WITH EACH OTHER LIKE AMERICAN LOVE MAX?
No. This has been completely refuted by both ASW and the US publisher, Aksys Games.
ISN'T GUILTY GEAR REALLY HARD? HOW DO I LEARN IT?
It's far simpler to pick up than you think it is. Sit down with some friends and play the game! If you have questions, ask them!
[There's a wealth of resources online, plenty of people who play the series, and also in-game modes designed to teach you the game. Also, people like to exaggerate when describing how hard it is to play this series. Please don't be turned off by that, and try it out yourself!]
ISN'T XRD REALLY DUMBED DOWN SIMPLIFIED? DOESN'T THAT MAKE IT BAD?
First, that's subjective. Play the game and decide for yourself from your own experiences.
Second, the new Roman Cancel systems remove a lot of hefty execution barriers that really hurt people opening up the potential of some certain characters like I-no. Others like Zato take just as much effort as before (arguably more since Nobiru doesn't cover like a quarter of the screen). The new system isn't so much dumbing things down as changing things up a bit. After all, this is a new game! AC+R hasn't ceased to exist if you want to keep playing XX.
[I've personally found this game to have a lot of depth, and to still reward good execution. The new mechanics may be a bit easier to use, but they still require good reads and proper execution, and they add to the meta in interesting ways. Coming from the perspective of a vet, I feel that the game is honestly rather great and still feels like Guilty Gear.]
WHO SHOULD I START WITH?
If you're from a more traditional Street Fighter background, check out Ky. He has solid footsie normals, a strong fireball game and incredibly simple combos (chain to sweep then do the charged fireball to stay on top of them at midscreen. In the corner, chain to sweep, do the super fireball then simply do close Slash, crouch High Slash, uppercut three times for big damage!). Watch out though - some characters have ways of slipping under his uppercut even on your wakeup!
Slayer is another fairly easy character with excellent footsies. His normals operate far more like Street Fighter (target combo for up-close, confirming standing kicks into a single special move etc.) than the rest of the cast. He also has one of the best backdashes in the game.
If you like modern Dhalsim's poking game and Super Turbo Dhalsim's ludicrous offense options, give Faust a whirl. You can learn the game poking all day and discover a whole new world of making people miserable as you learn how the game works and how he uses its systems.
[ I've always thought of AXL as being the character that's most like Dhalsim, but Faust is not far off either. I recommend trying out a few characters. You might like to read the descriptions in the Dustloop wiki and/or Brokentier character guide for Accent Core to help you find one.]
WHO'S TOP TIER?
Faust, Sol, Milia, Ramlethal, Chipp, Zato. Listed in order of difficulty for either execution or neutral game reasons.
[This is subject to opinion and change, of course.]
IF WE KNOW THIS, WHY PLAY ANYONE ELSE?
A mix of character tools and universal system mechanics mean that everyone has some sort of option for just about every situation. Try out everyone and see who fits you best. Being comfortable with a character and finding your own answers to situations will take you much further in the long run than just mindlessly following a flowchart someone else threw at you. Knowledge you own is knowledge you're applying without even realising it!
[Guilty Gear has long been known as a game where, because of the level of complexity, many players only play one character. I've found that it's especially possible to overcome bad match-ups in this series, more so than in many other games, because of the general design – a high level of freedom, options, and mechanics. I definitely recommend just playing whichever character you feel is best for you.]
SO IF THIS IS OUT, DOESN'T THAT MEAN BLAZBLUE/PERSONA/UNIEL/ARCANA HEART/GEXVS/SKULLGIRLS/MY LOCAL SENGOKU BASARA X SCENE WON'T PLAY THOSE GAMES ANYMORE?
Play what you enjoy playing. Videogames are fun.
HOW DO I BLOCK MILLIA?
1. Be Praying
2. Be Praying
3. Be Praying
ＢＥ ＡＴＴＩＴＵＤＥ ＦＯＲ ＧＡＩＮＳ．．．
[It's a Radiant Silvergun reference.]
[LET THERE BE GUILTY GEAR!]