Added info on Burning Kick
Burning Kicks on the Ground
The distance traveled during a Burning Kick on the ground is determined by the strength of the kick button used. WK travels the least, MK travels further and HK travels the furthest. If you predict that your opponent will attack you low, you can do a Burning Kick in anticipation. It will hop over the low attack and counter-hit them, scoring you a knockdown. For this reason, it’s would be wise to remember the distances each kick strength takes you.
Ground Burning Kicks cannot be thrown, so this is good against predictable opponents who LOVE to throw you (especially Ken and his Kara throws). WK Burning Kick is the best option to counter a throw, since it recovers slightly faster and travels the least amount (which will keep you out of harm’s way).
It is possible, but not recommended, to literally hop over some types of fireballs with Burning Kicks. I don’t recommend doing this because the timing is pretty strict and it usually works a little better when the fireballs thrown are slow. However, it is definitely an option that is there for you.
In the corner, if you hit a grounded cornered opponent with a grounded WK Burning Kick (close range), you can juggle with either a HP Thunder Knuckle or an Ultra Combo.
Burning Kicks in the Air
Viper can also do Burning Kicks in the air. Just do the same motion as you would on the ground, but do it before you land. It allows you to hover a bit longer and has cross-up capabilities, so it can be tricky.
Keep in mind that if you jump forward and you do a WK Burning Kick, you will drop straight down. MK and FK Burning Kicks in the air makes Viper travel a little bit further forward. This is especially noticeable if you do a High-Jump towards the opponent and do BK afterwards.
When you are in the air and you hit with a WK Burning Kick in the corner, opponent trapped inside, if you land in time… you can tack on a HP Thunder Knuckle or Ultra Combo for more damage. Be careful about using Ultra Combos in the corner, because the timing is a bit stricter.
It is possible to absorb a non-EX fireball with an Mid-Air Burning Kick, but it is very inconsistent so I wouldn’t try it all the time.
If you do a MK or FK Burning Kick just before you land, you will actually hover and travel a short distance further ahead during the Burning Kick animation. This can be very good for better cross-ups on a downed opponent. This rule also applies to vertical jump to Burning Kick. If you do MK or FK Burning Kick just before you land (jumping towards or away), you will actually travel a bit further. Great to confuse someone on wakeup to cross them up.
Air Normal Attack to Burning Kick in Mid-Air
You can perform a Burning Kick immediately after hitting with these air normals:
jumping vertical WK
jumping vertical HP
jumping towards WK
jumping towards HK
example: hit with jumping towards HK, do a Burning Kick after you see the HK hit or blocked
This is vital in Viper’s mix-up game. You can decide to use a WK Burning Kick after a normal hits, to hit them in the front… or you can use MK or FK to hit them from behind.
The Importance of Performing High-Jumps to Burning Kicks (aka “Instant HJ Burning Kick”)
If you master the art of utilizing High-Jumps to Burning Kicks, it will increase your offensive capabilities as a Viper player. It can help her cover a lot of ground and it can change the trajectory of her attacks, which makes it difficult to block. The faster you do the Burning Kick after the High-Jump, the lower the trajectory will be and it will also be faster.
The normal way to do High-Jump to Burning Kick is to first perform the High-Jump in the desired direction:
quickly tap D, then immediately tap UF to High-Jump forward
quickly tap D, then immediately tap U to High-Jump vertically
quickly tap D, then immediately tap UB to High-Jump backwards
The faster you do the Burning Kick after the High Jump, the more of a change you will see in descent speed and trajectory from the Burning Kick. Needless to say, the faster you do the Burning Kick afterwards, the faster the descent and the lower the trajectory. Of course, one of the trickiest HJed Burning Kicks to defend against is one that combines a High Jump and a Burning Kick motion in one fluid joystick motion.
The best way to do a Instant HJed Burning Kick is to do it in this motion:
d, db, b, uf + K to travel foward further
d, db, b, bu + K to travel backward
d, db, b, u + K to travel in between (need to confirm distance and usage)
Remember to Switch Input Direction for Air Burning Kicks as you Crossover
Hope the title isn’t confusing, but let me explain. Imagine a vertical line going upward from the top of the opponent’s head. This line will separate his frontside area and his backside area. If you are in the air and do a Burning Kick anywhere around his frontside, then you would perform the joystick input like normal. However, if you jump over him and pass over to the backside of his body frame, you must do the Burning Kick joystick inputs in the opposite direction in order to do the input correctly.
Example: Viper is on the left, Sagat is on the right. Viper jumps over Sagat’s head and is now in his backside area, still in the air. On the joystick, you would go from down to right in a quarter-circle motion and hit a Kick Button to execute a Burning Kick in the air.
This also applies to Viper’s jumping towards HK attack. If you hit with her jumping towards HK, and you are on his backside area, you can do a Burning Kick to tag on another hit, but you must do the joystick inputs in the opposite way. Basically, if you cross someone up with jump-in HK, you can tag on something like a WK Burning Kick to get another hit… or you can do MK/FK Burning Kick as well (will confirm if it hits or distances you in a future update)
Example: Viper is on the left, Sagat is on the right. Viper jumps and crosses up Sagat with jump-in HK. The HK clearly hits Sagat’s on the back of his neck. On the joystick, you would go from down to right in a quarter-circle motion and hit WK to follow up with a Burning Kick.
Instant High-Jump to WK Burning Kick Trick:
This is a good tactic against a lot of the SFIV cast because it is hard to defense, counters a lot of attempted reversal attacks while making others whiff, and/or can be the killing blow to the opponent if they have no life left.
One good example: After a knockdown (i.e. Temple Massage throw), dash up to the opponent’s body and walk slightly towards the body to make sure you are point-blank with the body. As the opponent gets up, do an immediate HJ into WK Burning Kick attack. Most opponents will either get hit if they try anything, or they will be able to block, but Viper can follow up with a standing MP or throw. The opponent can counter after the Burning Kick, but it’s difficult.
The reason why it is a trick is because it will either hit the opponent for another knockdown, and it will make a lot of attacks whiff, including Ultras. I have seen stuff like shoto EX shoryukens and Dictator’s Ultra totally whiff because of this move. Against most opponents, it’s safe and is great to finish off someone who will die from chip damage.
NOTE: There are some opponents that this will not work on. AFAIK, these are the opponents:
El Fuerte (EX Air Grab and Ultra beat it clean)
Zangief (lariat beats Burning Kick every time)
Blanka (his Ultra can still hit, but it will hit once if timed right, Electricity will also beat it clean)
EX Burning Kick Uses
Doing an air EX Burning Kick will let you hover for a short time in the air, and it will stop your forward momentum (unless you are near the ground when you do it, then you will travel farther). It also is a multi-hit attack if the opponent is also in the air close to your body. Very useful to avoid fireballs at last minute, or to immediately hit someone if they have jumped into your vicinity.
EX Burning Kick on the ground will not hit crouching opponents and can be severely punished if it whiffs, so be careful. However, it is a decent anti-air (especially on wake-up) if the opponent is about to land around sweep range from where you are. It is also good to hit with when you are certain that the opponent will be standing near you.