Beating Karas



Beating Karas
To be honest, I share the same sentiment as Jimmy when it comes down to the Karas whining. Its really gotten so bad that if I was considering buying the game, and I came to read the TvC sub-forum to see whats going on in the community and I was bombarded by the over exaggerated bitching that everyones spurting out, I probably wouldnt have gotten the game, and I wouldnt be surprised if this small community has already lost several potential players due to the incessant bitching. So, lets take another approach, shall we. Lets break him down and figure out how to beat him.

What not to do:
DO NOT approach Karas like you would any other character. In many ways he is as different from the rest of the cast as the Giants. If youre playing a good Karas and you go after him guns-a-blazin, then youll soon find that he can out-prioritize you with ease, and that one mistake will equate to an infinite., which will mean you losing anywhere from half to all of your life (depending on your character), 2 bars to escape (putting you at zero), and Karas will be sitting on at least 3 bars. Now youre fighting an uphill battle for being stupid, because if you want to hurt him you have to open him up at least two times before hes out of bar to Megacrash your successful advances, if you can manage even one, and because you dont have any bar, all he needs to do is hit you one more time, and its over. (If youre using a character that he cant infinite, then you can approach this match-up somewhat more offensively, but that doesnt mean that this match is a freebie or anything.)

What to do:
DO play defensively. One of the saving graces in this match-up is that Karas doesnt have any really useful options for opening you up, and this game is equipped with several defensive mechanisms. His only overhead options are his jumping attacks, which are slow enough that theyre easy to react to consistently, and the third hit of his Rekkas, which is easy as all-get-out to defend against (block the second Rekka low, and the third high every time). Remember, every time you block a jump in attack, push-block it, because you dont want him to pull that jump cancel into grab BS. Grabs suck in general and are easily avoided, so this shouldnt be a problem. Karas cross-up jB is pretty easy to see coming because he needs to jump rather high and he needs to make a visible dash to the other end of your character, so, learn to recognize this and block as is appropriate, or just air-block. Karas unblockable is very slow, and an eyesore at that. You can easily punish it by jumping over it and getting a free combo; if he sends out an assist to hold you in block-stun, push-block and jump, and then punish him for trying stupid shenanigans. If he attempts to dash through you to cross you up, block in the other direction, obviously, and remember that you can punish his dash; hes only invincible for a very small period of time. Also, remember that theres very little that Karas can do to jump blocking, nothing really, so if youre afraid hes going to pull some confusing shenanigans on the floor, take to the skies. One thing to fear, however, is Assist shenanigans. If you dont know what Im talking about, watch the BS that Kubo whips out on Gian. The best way to fight this is to simply pay attention to where Karas is, not the fireball, and to block appropriately, or to stick to the skies and air-block when he attempts this sort of stuff. Also, Karas needs to either IAD or dash on the ground to make any use of this trick, both of which are leaving him temporarily vulnerable (One way to avoid Karas BS all together is to sit with your back to the corner. Then the match is Karas literally running into the wall until the clock runs out). Needless to say, if your defense suffices (IE: if your patient) then Karas doesnt have anything on you short of annoying pressure, and if you take a health lead at any point in the match, just low-block, cause youve won.

DO master your execution. When Karas fucks up, you want to be able to capitalize on that to the best of your abilities. If youre playing Chun and you nail Karas with an infinite at the beginning of the match and you drop it, and Karas responds with the ass-kicking of a lifetime, then it was your fault, not the games. Simply put, dont fuck up because Karas takes damage like crazy, and you want to exploit the hell out of this.

DO learn what punishes Karas block-strings. If you do nothing but block, then Karas will build enough bar to Megacrash anything you successfully respond with. Characters such as Rock can push-block most anything that Karas whips out and respond with a free super, and considering that supers supersede Megacrashing, this is a good thing. Find out what works for your character and hurt him. Also, dont count VCs out, some characters can follow these things up with so much damage its not even right.

DO Megacrash; this should be obvious. However, I wouldn’t suggest Megacrashing until you notice your opponent starting the infinite, setting you up for a corner combo, or setting you up for a reset, or anything that leads to big damage. What I basically mean by this is, if you’re using a character that can’t be “infinited”, or if your opponent lands a move like an anti-air 5B, I would suggest waiting to see what they’re going for, because if your character can’t be “infinited” and your not near the corner or in the position for a reset, or if your opponent starts their combos from an otherwise difficult means to lead to big damage, it might be better to wait and see. If the Karas player goes for a lower damage combo, whether by necessity or difficulty, then I’d say save your bar and take the hit. If he goes for the infinite, or you smell a reset a-comin’, Megacrash like it’s your job, maybe twice for good measure (I’m kidding of course).

Character specific strats: (It’s rather general, for now)
If youre using a zoning character, like Megaman or Saki, then your goal will be to establish a safe-distance, past half-screen, and to thwart his advances. A good turtle will piss off a good Karas quick, because every slip hurts twice as much, and Karas doesnt have any tools for getting in except for jumping, which hardly suffices. If you play a proper zoning game then you can put Karas in a situation where he works his ass off to get in, only to find that you can Megacrash any successful advances, and rinse and repeat (basically the inverse of his strategy).

If youre using a good run-away, particularly Ken and Batsu, then you can hang out in the skies until Karas is forced to do something outside of his safety zone, to which you can respond appropriately.

If youre using a character with an air-grab super, such as Ippatsuman or Daimao, and your execution is sufficient, then Karas should be forced to stick to the floor in fear of eating anywhere from 10K-16K of unMegacrashable damage, where hes a harmless little pussycat, an annoying pussycat, sure, but a harmless one nonetheless. (Barring Kubo-esque BS, but even then, sitting in a corner supersedes that stuff, so the theory still applies)

If youre using a character that just plain hurts your opponent, such as Polymar, Ippatsuman, Tekkaman, Alex, or any character with a mid-screen infinite, then make that shit count and remind Karas how much health he really has.

This is where character specific, situational responses will be placed. Tell me, for example, that push-blocking X grants your character a free Y, and I will add it to this section.

Supers: (EDIT: Not as useful as I would have hoped, I’ll elaborate later today)
All of the following characters can push-block and punish Karas’ 5B & 2B pokes with the cited supers (naturally, the supers must be performed within their range):

Daimao: QCF Super
Jun: Both of her level one supers
Ken: DP Super
Rock: QCB Super
Roll: [4]6 Super
Ryu: QCF Super
Joe: DP Super

(Just because I didn’t mention a character doesn’t mean they can’t punish these pokes via push-block super. Batsu and Chun might be able to, for example, I just couldn’t get it to work in training mode. Also, I tested every characters level 3 and I couldn’t get one to connect; once again, this could just be a failure on my part.)

Super Armor: (EDIT: Not as useful as I would have hoped, I’ll elaborate later today)
Utilizing super armor, some characters should (IE: I haven’t tested this to a great extent yet) be able to stop Karas’ pressure reliably. Let’s say you’re using Ippatsuman and you push-block Karas’ 2B and input Ippatsuman’s 6C (go to neutral first, though, or he’ll do a psycho crusher). The super armor of that move should suffice in breaking Karas’ pressure if he attempts to go for a follow-up 5C, as per usual. If so, then you can Baroque (which you would have from the 5C that your armor broke through), or call an Assist (or both), and follow up accordingly. This same principle should apply to Casshern’s RDP(421)+B/C. Beware, however, if the Karas player suspects that you’ll do this, he can counter super, so don’t be too predictable.

Counter Supers:
If you notice that your opponent has a tendency to, say, follow 2B up with 5C everytime, then you could push-block 2B and input a counter super to punish him. This can be risky, and it’s inherently limited (Only Saki, Doronjo and Karas have counter supers, and I don’t think that Souki’s counter special would suffice), but that doesn’t mean it can’t be useful.

If you push-block a jump in attempt, or if you see or predict one, then the Karas’ player has essentially granted you a free air-grab. In the case of normal air-grabs, such as Alex’s knee or Daimao’s superman, you might be out-prioritized (this is somewhat unlikely, especially if you’re air-grabs following a push-block), but if you’re using Daimao or Ippatsuman’s air-grab super than you’ll net the damage almost every time. This severely limits what Karas can do to open you up.

Variable Counters:
Variable counters are great in general, though some shine brighter than others. I happen to know that Ryu’s and Karas’ VC’s will punish both Karas’ 5B & 2B, as well as several other pokes, consistantly. Whereas Daimao’s VC, to look at the other end of the spectrum, is much slower and can’t really net guarunteed damage, but that not to say that Daimao’s VC is useless. Let’s say you call in Daimao’s VC after a 2B from Karas, and the other player unwittingly input 5C early, then you’ve just netted anywhere from one-third to two-thirds or your opponent’s health. Ultimately, if you’re using a VC that isn’t quick enough to guarantee damage, then that doesn’t mean don’t use it, it just means don’t be too predictable.

Tardy Counters:
I’m not a Batsu player, nor do I fully understand the usefulness of his Tardy Counters, but, from what I understand, they work similarly to super-armor moves, only difference being that they can be used on normal block. Assuming so much, I can see these being just as potent, if not more so, then super-armor moves, and they should be applied similarly, with the same strengths and weaknesses.

Ken the Eagle seems to be able push-block Karas’ advances and teleport out. I’ve also found that Yatterman’s QCF Super could also be used as an escape tool.

(Anyways, I can only hope that people will contribute to this thread and elaborate on specific strategies and the like that work for them against Karas. Maybe, if this is taken seriously, we can have a solid guide for beating Karas and the bitching will subside to some extent.)


Nice guide. Lets see what happens down the road. I dont think Karas will be too big of a problem later on when enough people find a gud strategy on fighiting him. I suggest people start worrying about Ken and Cash-Earned tho. If a gud ken player comes around i believe he’s going to be hellish ( i dont play pvp enough to have an awesome ken) plus if a casshern infinite breaks out with the insane anmount of damage he deals…Back to Karas lol.

I guess variable counter comboes would be a gud thing to learn when fighting karas. That would be my first priority when it comes down to it i guess


wrong… a good karas would see a VC coming and NEVER use ANYTHING but As and Bs (which are safe to any VCs) and punish with the HARDEST thing he can… take it from a… GOOD karas player to tell you that ALOT of characters cant do ANYTHING about karas.


If he never uses anything but As and Bs, his blockstrings become hella predictable don’t they?


NOT if you PUT every third WORD in all CAPS!


yes they are very predictable, but what are you going to do? you cant punish him at all for using only As and Bs, all you can do is run away and try to get out of it, because hes on advantage after any of those hits : \


Off the top of my head, I know for a fact that Ryu and, well, Karas, have VC’s fast enough to punish 5B, and I’m sure it’s the same story for 2B, but I’ve never checked to validate this.

Edit: I updated the main post with more specific tools and strategies.

Edit #2: Could any Yatterman players tell me how useful his 2C is as a response tool? Like, can you push-block Karas’ 5B and hit them with a 2C before his 2B connects? If not, could you do the same between Karas’ 2B and 5C? I’m hoping to find some normals that you can fit between/punish his block-strings, or some specials even, just as long as no bar is expended to berate his pressure.


even if it does, karas sees the flash, all he has to do is 623+2 buttons super to beat it… : \


u can punish his Bs with a VC…ryu’s VC hits his Bs…i do it all the time…in fact i wait till he hits a B for that…n i dont think u can possibly space ur self perfectly all the time to not get punished…cuz if u r then how r u pressuring me…if i push block at that distance then ill b free to move or punish with a super…fine for the most part at that distance i cant swing but i think ur gonna have to b more active than that in a real match


Ultimate Faust, I think I speak for many of us when I say that it would be appreciated if you would just not post unless you plan to contribute ways to beat Karas or you have questions, not things that you think make Karas plain unstoppable. You can take that to other threads where people enjoy complaining about him. No offense to you bro, but in here people will try to learn.

Tight post, Zach. I had posted something very similar in another forum and much of the stuff you mention here goes along with what I’ve been saying. I’d like to add that a basic pressure string many Karas players like to use is to kasha after a s.:snkc:. If you push block that move and make the 2nd hit whiff, many characters can interrupt his kasha with supers, DPs, quick pokes, etc. For example, Tekkaman can throw the lance to super, Ryu can DP or shinkuu, Saki can viper beam or s.:snkc: (and if she has Tekkaman assist, Karas is done), etc., not to mention that anyone can super jump out if they think the Karas won’t risk the kasha. If you’re feeling bold, you can even dash forward or IAD and try to pressure back. Not a good idea most of the time but if you notice the Karas player being very conservative, chances are he’ll just block or eat a mixup.

If he’s being careful with his pokes and trying to bait you, push block and do the same thing. Super jump out or throw something safe that will push him back. Be patient, get a health lead, try to give him safe chip damage or punish his approaches whenever possible, etc.


Yeah I’m not going to go into it, but there is stuff that will beat all of his moves, including 2a and 5b. And I love Karas players who get happy about that counter super, because they eat the biggest combos.


i only use his counter for countering VCs or juggernaut moves…

but anyways, only few moves i know of that will stop karas is ryus shoryuken (hahah) and some supers…

only thing i got to say about karas is is if you hit him MAKE IT COUNT. like seriously ryu shoryu, into shinkuu tag out super then another tag out super. go for VCs if you want to try, but its not hard to see a VC, sorry, but any good karas will probably punish you for using it.

also, notice that he cant do much about people who have the option of coming directly from above him, his only option really is to either move out of the way or block, and a blocking karas is a scared karas. for example, chun can double jump air dash B lightning legs, totally safe. but with everyone else all i see them do is struggle to their death.


anyone have game experience vs karas’ overhead and 4,6 followup?

I never see ppl use it in vids. His overhead looks really fast.


If you you’re talking about what I think you’re talking about, I mention it in my post, but I call it his “Rekka’s”. They’re easy to defend against because the order is always: normal block, low block, high block. Just memorize the pattern and apply it, though I’ve been caught by it simply because people almost never go for it, so I didn’t expect it. Just be on your toes and that shouldn’t be a problem.

BTW, after really scrutinizing some of the proposed tactics (the one’s under specifics), I’ve found that some didn’t work as well as I’d hoped in an actual match setting. That’s not to say that they’re not useful, all of the proposed tactics are useful in a certain context, but some of the one’s I mentioned aren’t useful in the implied situations. I’ll edit the post after my classes today.


You can’t use supers when your opponent is in a VC state, same as Batsu’s Tardy Counter.


Nice guide. As a Karas player myself I think this is pretty good. Since I play Karas I just counter Karas with Karas LMAO but this is definitely awesome. The effort is very much appreciated. I’ve done Souki vs. Karas a few times and it’s sickening how uphill it is but an interesting thing to do that is pretty situational with characters who can 2A off of their Megacrash is;

If you somehow get Karas in the corner with no meter you can bait him to attack you, immediately Megacrash then 2a to your longest Baroque combo. I think even 25% Baroque (with Souki) will usually end up killing him.

I know this is hard as hell but there have been many times that I’ve had no bar with Karas so it’s pretty practical in those rare circumstances.