Ask Us Anything: KOF FAQ & Advice Corner


I’m going to use this team since I love the flow of Clark/EX Kyo/Terry, but I have been noticing that everyone who plays this game well and at a high level can use multiple characters well. As a result, I want more top tier goodness in my repertoire. Besides, it seems like everyone has a pocket Chin or Karate nowadays :).


What are some realistic goals I can set for myself in trying to learn this game?

Also, in learning movement options, can you think of anything specific I can do to practice or reinforce how they should be used?

I have been playing fighters about a year now. I mostly play SF4 and almost always keep my cool, but playing KoF13 makes me incredibly salty. I think it is because I have no clue what to do so I hesitate and flounder constantly, and when I do decide to do something I fail to execute it properly. What I did in SF4 was just keep running into the wall until it stopped hurting, so I’m guessing I should do the same thing for this game.


Specific goals, hm. Doing things consistently in training mode, like hops, run up throws and stuff. Practice hitconfirming on a random blocking dummy (needs to be crouching for low confirm practice). One important skill to learn is to block as many hops as possible on reaction when you’re being pressured.

As with SF, try to do stuff grounded or hopping if possible. Full or especially super jumps forward are something to be used sparingly.

It’s funny, KOF is so fun to me I just can’t get salty almost no matter what. And yes, hesitation kills in upclose situations. In upclose situations most everything is too fast to properly react to. You have to commit and trust that your stuff works to get anything done. Much the same as Street Fighter, really. One big difference is that although frame trapping in KOF is important and pretty effective, it is not as central to upclose pressure as it is in Street Fighter. Many characters’ throw techs are basically option selects with their close C, which is typically a very fast button - 3 or 4 frames, so even if you make it a point to stay out of throw range you can get blown up for careless pressure.

The basic building block of KOF pressure is the high/low/throw mixup, which every character can do and which most everyone actually also fears. You have to stand to DP and to tech in this game, leaving you open to lows. Stuff like empty hop, throw is nice, easy and nasty. cr.B, cr.B, run up or walk up throw works well also. Just be aware that characters in KOF remain throw invincible a good bit longer than they do in SF4 after waking up/exiting hit/blockstun. So something like hop CD into tick throw isn’t instant, but rather “hop CD, noticeable pause, tick throw”. Of course you can just do the classic jump attack, low short to keep them guessing. DPs can’t be FADCed to be safe so you can bait those out and tear people new assholes.

The Beginner’s Incomplete Guide to KOF by DandyJ is a classic for getting to grips with KOF if you have a Street Fighter background:

Also, because of hops and high run speeds KOF13 isn’t as much about spacing your buttons perfectly as SF - in SF you often try to be spaced just right to outreach someone by a couple pixels to get damage in. KOF, you know someone is trying to sweep you for example, you can just hop in and tear him a new asshole, and so forth. The spacing is more gross, and it’s more about active movement, timing and angles than prolonged pixel perfect spacing. Improper spacing is definitely a thing, but most situations last only for a brief moment after which the fighters are elsewhere already.


Get to grips with your team first, then expand out when you get decent, IMO. No use in learning odds and ends of a ton of characters while not actually getting a deep understanding of your own team. (The very basics of other characters is helpful because you can grok what they do, but knowing move properties and being able to set stuff up in training mode is enough at first at least).




Thanks for the advice, I’ve been grinding it out in training mode in preparation for EVO and have been focusing only on my original team.


Have a quick question about a Daimon corner setup. dp+B DC dp+A sometimes allows a crossup j.B, but not always.
At first I thought it might be like King’s corner crossup where she has different ones if she’s player 1 or player 2, but that doesn’t seem to be the case.

Anybody more familiar with Daimon know what I might be missing?


Just started playing KOF13 on steam. I learned some bnb’s for the characters in my team and watched a bunch of juicebox’s vids to get a feel for the neutral game. Went on for my first match and got bodied… its a lot harder to get into than sf4. What should I be doing in the neutral game so that I don’t get rushed down in the corner and destroyed? Do I just need to keep getting wrecked and get a feel for the speed of the game and eventually will get better?


The first thing is that KOF is not harder to begin with necessarily, just very, very different. SF4 is a lot about finding and maintaining an optimal distance to space pokes just right. KOF is more about high octane movement, the spacing is much more gross and the situations last mere moments. You can attack at a long distance and close in on someone much more easily. If someone does a bad poke, you can just hop in and murder him for it. Zoning is actually pretty strong, but in this game it cannot be an end in itself because of the lack of damage output - the mentality is much the same as Akuma’s in SF4: Create an opportunity and use that opportunity to get in and start your pressure. Antiairing and air to airing is pretty much all angle and timing, and often just not being where the opponent thought you were. Movement is super strong in this, and while full and especially jumps forward are still generally a bad idea, hops are often really good because they turn air normals into long pokes, a bit like how you’d treat a fireball in footsies in SF4. Except these lead into pressure and can be overheads.


@Komatik thanks for the advice. I keep doing a tad better each time I play online and have been trying to keep moving and mix up my ways in. I’m trying to work on hit confirming in a real match now. I can do it in training mode on random guard but its much harder in a real KOF match because of the match pace. If anyone wants to add me on Steam you can PM and we can run some sets.


Also, frame trapping is nowhere near as key to the upclose pressure game of KOF13 as it is SF4’s. In SF4, you can tech throws crouching, DP from a crouching position and overheads rarely lead to anything. The crouch teching and poor overheads pretty much mean that high/low/throw is not a strong mixup. You frame trap because it can be made safe and the opponent may get flustered enough to crouch tech, which opens him up. Apart from this, it’s bloody hard work in SF4.

In KOF, by contrast, you have to stand to tech (4P/4D) and to DP (the game only accepts 623 and 626 as DP inputs - all the short/longcuts are utilizing the 626), so low/throw is scary. Hops are short enough to catch an unwary opponent but actually lead to a full combo on hit and more pressure on block. Hops also allow empty hop low/throw. So there is a complete high/low/throw mixup game, and its payoffs are high. Simple and brutal, this is the main form of pressure in KOF.


just bought this game and its downloading now. just wanted to ask what people think is the best way to get started? never played an anime fighter before and all I have to go on now is the usual find a char you like and practice/play.


First, KOF is not an anime fighter. The same fundamentals apply as in SF - you can’t block in the air, can’t change directions barring special moves and so on. You just have four different jumps instead of one or two.

If you’re coming from a Street Fighter background, check the info packet in my sig, especially the following video. The Beginner’s Incomplete Guide to KOF is pretty much the best SF=>KOF resource there is. Watch once, watch twice, watch a ton of times because it’s great.

Mentality-wise, those couple posts above yours are for the difference in mentality, and difference in what KOF13 is about in contrast to SF4.




I am using King/Mature/Leona right now, It’s kinda neat because they all have different execution so I think learning them will help me learn to use my Hitbox better.


Same. It’s nice to have characters that force you to learn different stuff.


I would like to get any tip about how to get rid of Athena’s traps when she zones you and totally controls the space with her fireballs/teleport/crouching+C/DM attacks! My favourite chars are K’, Shen Woo and Terry. Sometimes I can successfully beat her with K’ flying kicks and teleports, but most of the times I get my ass kicked really hard!

Thanks in advance, this topic is GREAT, you guys are really skilled and have helped me a lot!


If you’ve ever played Street Fighter, Athena’s projectile game is somewhat similar to Ryu or Guile. (I’ve only played 13, so if you’re not talking about that game then this might not hold)

Fireball -> You see fireball and jump -> Uppercut

The same applies if you try to roll through the fireball on reaction, you’re gonna get punished. That being said, there are things you can do that can work. The universal ones are jumping or rolling at the same time as Athena throws the fireball. This is tricky because you have to predict your opponent’s actions, but if you’re successful you get pretty much any combo you want. An anti-air from Athena might do 200 damage tops using meter, but a grounded combo from anyone can usually break 400 with a bar and a drive. Do that twice and suddenly Athena has to worry about dying to pokes. Because characters can cover ground so quickly by running, you can also block and then run forward some. If she throws another fireball you’ll have to block again, but you’ll gain ground without taking any risky actions.

Character specific things you can do:
K’ - You can use your fireball (QCF+P) to cancel hers and then kick it towards her as a proper projectile (forward+LK I think). This will allow you some time to move forward and close the gap. Teleport is pretty slow, and to use it successfully you’d need to have the same timing as rolling or jumping anyway.
Shen - He has a special (QCB+FP I think) that is specifically meant to parry fireballs. You’ll gain some meter while Athena won’t, and you won’t take damage, so she’ll have to do something different eventually.
Terry - If you’re having a really hard time with Athena’s fireballs, you can use EX Power Wave to push through her fireballs. It hits 3 times, so even if she blocks it you have plenty of time to get close, and it’ll go right through her fireball if she doesn’t EX it. Keep in mind that it starts pretty slow, and she will most likely jump or roll to avoid it, so be ready to punish her.


Thanks for the useful advices, RadicalFuzz!

I used to be a SF turbo player long time ago, and I was already used to that fireball->uppercut playing style! But at least for me, Athenas projectiles come out extremely fast and I always have to antecipate and jump in BEFORE, and sometimes I fall into some ambushed mindgames and jump in too early and then I eat a special DM which sends me to the sky!

I am trying to practice more my reflexes to be able to parry her fireballs with Shen’s but I always do it too late and get hit before the parry.

The Terry’s EX Power wave seems to be a really great solution! Never realized that before :open_mouth: I am going to try it right now!

With K’ I indeed can use his firehand and shoot a projectile back, but most of times she has enough time to roll/teleport and punishes me while K’ is still recovering from the kick! grrrrr :blush:

As you see, I am still a sucky Kof XIII player, but Im trainning hard and trying my best to get better! and I really appreciate all your advices!


You can always not kick K’s fireball, just use it to nullify hers. Also if she wants to throw fireballs and punish you, the damage you get from one jump-in is much greater than the one she gets with one anti-air. The risk is in her favor but the reward is in yours.