Chinese Opera School - Kung Fu for beginners

Hi guys,
I’m going to try and create a summary of the tech that’s being discussed in the general thread, things found in videos, general training tips, and assorted move information. Looks like the first post in general discussion isn’t being updated, so I’ll try and keep this as a seperate resource. I’m not going to cover the absolute basics (how to fighting game etc) and I’ll avoid using the move and string/chain/target combo names where possible.

RRn = Razor Rush #
i.e., RR3 = :f::mp:~:lp:~:mp:

Normals and strings
I don’t think I’m alone when suggesting that the key to Lei’s game plan is being in the best stance at the appropriate time; how that’s managed is through experience. But, knowing what stances suit which purposes is important and this section discusses that. It seems that all of Lei’s stance normals hit crouching.

Be sure to chime in with your own science as this is still my weakest area of expertise.

NOTE: Lei can :dp::k: from stances - the safest way to get it to happen is by using the shortcut :df::d::df::k:.

:lp: - fast and seems pretty pointless given his target combos: :lp::lp::lp::lp::lp: and :lp::mp::lp::mp:
:mp: - see above, but consider :mp::mp:; [:f:dragon]
:hp: - strong long-range poke; moves Lei forward
:lk: - superb poke; Lei’s hurtbox appears to collapse to half height
:mk: - slower version of :lk:; similar hurtbox transformation
:hk: - ranged AA; slow startup; moves Lei forward
:lp:~:lp:~:lp:~:lp:~:lp: - [:f:snake]
:lp:~:mp:~:lp:~:mp: - stance reset
:lp:~:mp:~:lp: - [:f:panther]
:mp:~:mp: - [:f:dragon]
:mp: - [:f:dragon]
:mp:~:mp:~:mk:~:lk:~:mk: - stance reset; juggle
Snake is your aggressive stance; consider entering it via RR1[:d:snake] or after a hard-knockdown. You want to be moving forward and looking for poke opportunities. If your op jumps, consider:
][:d:panther]:mk: or :hk:
[*][:u:dragon]:lp: or :hp: or :mk: or :hk:
:lp: - low, fast, and short; good poke, but range limits usefulness
:mp: - looks like it does something interesting (low AA?), but the strange hitbox makes it difficult to employ
:hp: - good reports on this normal; I have no specifics
:lk: - good low poke from range; seems to increase hurtbox height; a good option when entering panther.
:mk: - good ground poke and AA normal; leads to string
:hk: - solid AA option; hits crouching - good for meaty pressure?
:mk:~:mp:~:lp:~:mp:~:lk: - last hit is low, can knockdown
:mk:~:mp:~:lp:~:mp:~:mk: - [:u:crane]
:lp:~:mp: - returns to normal stance; usually perfect range for :mk: follow-up or :qcf::mk:
Panther looks to be a balanced stance with good AA and decent ground pressure. There are good reports on counter-hit AA options and the tekken string :mk::mp::lp::mp::lk: / :mk::mp::lp::mp::mk: makes for good BnB fodder. After either :mp: of that string, you can wait a split second and re-apply razor rush pressure as a loose frame-trap.

:lp: - a light with good range; moves Lei forward
:mp: - moves Lei forward; does something strange to Lei’s hurt-box (useful for meaty wake-up pressure)
:hp: - moves Lei forward
:lk: - nice long range poke; inches Lei forward
:mk: - low hit from standing; good meaty option
:hk: - long range poke; moves Lei forward
:lk:~:mk:~:mp:~:lk: - [bt]
An interesting stance in that all of the normals in this stance keep Lei quite safe - his hitbox advances quite a bit further than his hurtbox making crane an excellent stance for mid to long range footsies. Feels weak for AA, however (perhaps :uf::k: is useful here?). :mk: is worth keeping handy as some players like to stand when you’re standing. His tekken string from this stance leads to back-turn. The Big Boss (Yung_Ice31) suggests using crane :mp: and :mk: post knock-down: :mp: for mashers and fast reversals and :mk: for reversals with no lower-body invulnerability.

:lp: - fast, long-range AA option
:mp: - good poke; can cancel into dragon’s spite
:hp: - good, slow, long-range AA option; moves Lei forward; [:f:tiger]
:lk: - low poke; moves Lei forward; [:f:crane]
:mk: - long-range AA; moves Lei forward
:hk: - slow, long-range AA; moves Lei forward
:f::p::p: - dragon’s spite; knockdown; juggle in the corner; [:f:tiger]
:mk:~:lp: - [:f:tiger]
:mk:~:lp:~:mp:~:lk: - [normal]
Great AA, provides :f::p::p: (more on that in the Wooden Dummy section), and can transition into tiger or crane - what’s not to like about dragon?

:p: - long range poke; one point of armour (small window during start-up); full-screen knockdown on hit; excellent push-back on block; moves Lei forward
:k: - knockdown
:f::p::p: - crumple on grounded hit; floating on airbourne hit; juggleable in corner; reflects projectiles
Tiger is easily the most limited stance, but one that really helps in certain situations. A blocked :p: is virtually unpunishable and on hit, you can raw tag for free. The armour on the punch makes the stance useful after strings that allow you to cancel into tiger. :f::p::p: can be used out of dragon stance in the corner as follows:
[dragon] :f::p::p: [:f: tiger] :f::p::p: <juggle>

Back Turn

NOTE: Lei can enter [:d: snake] from this stance.
:lp: - mid-range AA?; linkable to :lk:
:mp: - good poke
:hp: - consider his tekken string; moves Lei forward
:lk: - excellent low poke; good recovery
:mk: - good poke; moves Lei forward
:hk: - slow sweep; hurtbox collapses; moves Lei forward
:hp:~:mp:~:lk:~:lp: - [:f:drunk]
:mk:~:hk: - juggle
Most commonly seen in combos (i.e., after comet kick), but not without benefits on its own. Some good pokes and a tekken string that leads to drunken. This is the only stance that Lei can use specials from without having to cancel the stance. Lei returns to normal stance when pressing :b:. Consider pressuring with :lp:, :mp:, :lk:,and :mk: while in back-turn and using specials for punishment or movement.


NOTE: Lei can enter [:d: snake] from this stance.
:lp: - good long-range poke; moves Lei forward
:mp: - long-range overhead; string at close range
:hp: - long range poke; moves Lei forward
:lk: - good low poke
:mk: - good AA
:hk: - AA?
:p::p: - tiger sip; cancel into :f::p:
:f::p::p: - overhead; knockdown; [playdead]
:b::p::p: - crumple; [playdead]
:mp:~:mp: - cancel into :f::p::p:
:lk:~:mp:~:hk: - low-hit followed by over-head then knockdown; [:b:crane]; cancellable into :p::p:
Drunken is a solid stance for okizeme with his overhead and :lk: string giving Lei a 50/50 on a non-reversal wake-up, has a decent AA tool, can transition into crane, and tiger sip. Like crane, most of his normals extend well in front of his hurtbox making this stance useful in footsies. Also, tiger sip. The Big Boss (Yung_Ice32) suggests drunken :mk: for AA vs. Heihachi. Lei can enter [:d: snake] from Back-Turn.

Razor Rush
An important part of Lei’s offense and knowing how to get it started are important aspects. Consider starting after:
[]jumping in
Once you start your RR pressure:
]vary your timing to create natural frame traps or to confuse your op
[]exit to a stance and raw launch to catch mashers
]think about the best stance to exit to based on your opponents style
Wooden Dummy
One of the routines you need to engage in when playing Lei is training your stance switches until you become conversant with the units that make them up. Listed are some sequences which, after practicing, will help you to apply pressure during matches. It should be noted that when you stance cancel, you should consider holding back for a couple of frames to try and bait reversal attempts if that’s the kind of thing your op likes to do. That won’t help against lows (unless you’re in crane), but many reversals aren’t low.


  1. RR1 [:d:snake] :mp:~:mp: [:f:dragon] :mp:~:f::p::p: [normal]
  2. RR2 [:d:dragon] :mp:~:f::p::p: [normal]
  3. RR2 [:d:dragon] :lk: [:f:crane]
  4. RR3 [:d:panther] :mk:~:mp:~:lp:~:mp:~:mk: [:u:crane]

It might not seem too interesting, but these 4 (three really) openers transition well.

1 and 2 (just dragon’s spite, really): with no stance change afterward, the blockstun on :f::p::p: (dragon’s spite) allows Lei to immediately re-pressure with razor rush.

3 and 4: crane transitions into back-turn which in turn can transition to drunken which allows Lei to get back to crane:
[crane] :lk:~:mk:~:mp:~:lk: [bt] :hp:~:mp:~:lk:~:lp: [:f:drunk] :lk:~:mp:~:hk: [:b:crane]

Put that all together and one training sequence might look like:
RR1 [:d:snake] :mp:~:mp: [:f:dragon] :mp:~:f::p::p: [normal] RR3 [:d:panther] :mk:~:mp:~:lp:~:mp:~:mk: [:u:crane]:lk:~:mk:~:mp:~:lk: [bt] :hp:~:mp:~:lk:~:lp: [:f:drunk] :p::p:~:p::p:~:f::p: :lk:~:mp:~:hk: [:b:crane]

Another, for tightening up your razor rush pressure timing.
RR2 [:d:dragon] ( :mp:~:f::p::p: [normal] RR1 [:d:snake] :mp:~:mp: [:f:dragon] )…

Now, maybe you’re lucky enough to play against humans who this will confuse and defeat, but I certainly don’t have that luxury. Training with strings like this is useful for your muscle memory - again, if you become conversant in the units he has (where one unit is a water-tight blockstring or combo) and how you can connect them together, you give yourself more control. Also, looks sick.

Strings: In Depth Discussion
Lei’s strings are an important aspect of his offense and breaking the strings up into manageable and safe sections while fishing for frame traps is crucial to success. I’ll slowly grow this post with string-specific trickery and data as it comes to light.
If anyone gets any frame data on the strings (particularly the parts in the middle), be sure to let us know.

General Notes
After any of the “stance resets” (when you drop out of a stance naturally) options vary depending on spacing, but consider:
[]:lk:~:mp: - hit confirmable to launcher; cancellable into ex :qcf::k:
[]a manual stance change
]raw launcher (risky)
[snake] :lp:~:mp:~:lp: [:f:panther]
[snake] :lp:~:mp:~:lp: [normal]
Thanks to luchaxbomb for this malarkey. By exiting to either normal stance or panther after snake, pressure can be re-applied quite quickly.

[snake] :mp:~:mp:~:mk: [normal]
This one’s pretty loose - use with caution.

[panther] :mk:~:mp: [normal]
[panther] :mk:~:mp:~:lp:~:mp: [normal]
Lei’s long panther string’s :mp:s allow reasonable follow-up options. Be careful of spacing.

[panther] :lp:~:mp: [normal] :mk:~:hp:
[panther] :lp:~:mp: [normal] :qcf::mk:
Panther Scratch returns Lei to normal stance quite quickly; either of these two follow-ups provide loose frame-traps.

[dragon] :mk:~:lp: [:f:tiger]
[dragon] :mk:~:lp: [:d:/:u:dragon]
[dragon] :mk:~:lp: [normal]
The second hit can transition into tiger or back into dragon, but also allows a loose frame-trap by going back to normal and applying pressure with either RR or normals.

[crane] :mp:
Blessed with a weird hurt-box, this normal is a strong okizeme option. Abuse.

[crane] :lk:~:mk: [normal]
[crane] :lk:~:mk:~:mp: [normal]
The first two or three hits of Lei’s crane chain allow for a loose frame trap by returning to normal stance (simply stop pressing buttons; direction is meaningless) and following up with something appropriate. The distance after the :mk: suits :qcf::k: and after the :mp: consider RR.

Miscellaneous Trickery and Tomfoolery
Here I’ll collect various useful (and not-so-useful) tricks and tips.
[]While applying :d::mp: pressure, consider a raw stance change. luchaxbomb suggests drunken for some overhead mixups.
]Rob2D points out that tiger palm ( [tiger] :f::p::p: ) can be used to crumple Dhalsim from across the screen by hitting his limbs - a tag cancel allows for a combo.
Top Player Report
I’ll try to maintain a list of good Lei players whose replays you can follow from within the game or search for on youtube (be sure to keep an eye on ssf4evo’s replay dumps).
[]Tatsujinken - Tatsu may or may not fiddle with Lei from time to time. He also uploaded a palm loop tutorial which can be found in the video thread. Ranked #10.
]Yung_Ice31 - Posts around SRK; Ranked #24.
[]doughboymondy - I’ve only seen one replay and his Lei didn’t get much of a chance to shine, but he know’s what he’s doing with him. He also runs a nice Steve. Ranked #91.
]cannabiscureall - luchaxbomb

panther trap is new to me thx.

i like SNAKE : :lp::mp::lp: - panther - :lp: - :lk::lk::lk::lk::lk::lk::lk: ect
Snake : :lp::mp::lp: - normal - lmhh
snake: :mp: {dragon} u can cancel off 1 mp dont need 2 unless it leaves more +idk just feel people maybe dont know this.

i try to only start RR after cr. :mp: or st. :lp:, :lk: , crouch MK

i love these traps but ive been trying to go into stance raw {snake} {back} {drunk} and stance switching raw if im feeling it like cr.:mp: cr.:mp:, RR#2, {dragon} :mp: pause :mp: up or down - ect

ALSO keep in mind im pretty sure u can cancel all stances into dragon kick and u can launch if u see crouch block and KNOW they are mashing out of ur stance string.
EX if someone is mashing during RR u can RR2-RR3 up or down then right when u switch just launch to catch the mashy light … love doing it off tiger sip

hardest part of lei is open up turtles after cr.:mp:2x-3x u can go right into drunk and 1. wait for AA 2. :lk:~:mp:~:hk: {sip on block}HITS LOW 3.:mp::mp: overhead into ground bouncer switch for for nice dmg or :b:PP if u feel it.

sry if this info is crap, i havent played today and cant rly think of why i do what i do

Some good science there, man. I had no idea that snake could get to panther off that string. I’ll add what I can to the summary.

I was convinced that Lei couldn’t get to his :dp::k: from his stances, but you saying that he could made me take another look. It’s not so much that he can do it, just that if you do the :dp: and hold the stick in the corner (i.e., at the end of the movement) such that his stance cancels, you can press the kick for the lotus - pretty much buffer the motion and press kick when the stance cancels out. That’s a pretty big deal IMO - thanks for that one. Oh, and the launcher from stance is genius - no idea why I didn’t think of that.

Kinda wish I played Tekken so I had a handle on some of his trickier shit…

EDIT: updated both posts; did some cleaning up; added some more content.

Added a small amount of back-turn information and another panther trap.

[dragon] :mk:~:lp: [:f:tiger]
[dragon] :mk:~:lp: [normal]
[dragon] :mk:~:lp: [up~down dragon] <<<<<<

i think thats about everything. good job!

xbl: cannabiscureall

Updated dragon:f:dragon stance exit and added luchaxbomb to top player report.

Wow, I’ve been playing Lei since his release, (and a little bit in Tekken beforehand) and even I learned a couple things from this thread! You guys are doing great work.

I’ve always used his stances sparingly, but I’ve been messing with them a bit more lately and this thread is great inspiration.

All this stuff is still crazy dangerous though. I suppose it all depends on your opponent more than anything else.

Couple things I’d like to point out:

  • I find that doing dragon kick from a stance is way more consistent if your hold the down input for a bit as opposed to the down forward. Holding the stick in the corner never did much for me. Only canceled the stance maybe 1 in 5 times.

  • You neglected to mention his double tiger palm. I find it good to throw out every now and again.

Yeah, his stances are great - tricky to use correctly though.

Can’t believe I forgot about the tiger palm - good catch. I updated the part about lotus kick from stance - the best bet is to use the shortcut srk - guarantees a lotus.

You’re dead right, the shortcut is the best method by far. Faster and works every time :slight_smile:

Oh and one more thing about tiger palm; (hope I don’t sound like I’m nitpicking or anything :P) you can use it to reflect fireballs. Now its a bit useless because:

-it only reflects 1 hit, so you can’t use it against ex hadoken for example.

-Its awfully slow, so you can’t use it against faster projectiles either.

-Window is very small. Expect to get counter hit a lot if you try this.

The only place I can think of that you might use it is against characters who like to throw a slow fireball, approach behind it and then throw out a poke. e.g. Guile, Sakura, Dhalsim. If you can time it right you’ll reflect the fireball and they eat a counter hit when they try to poke.

Speaking of Dhalsim, if you’re psychic you can use the palm against his limbs to get a full screen crumple + tag cancel in your partner for a full combo.

But if you can get any of the above to consistently work in a match then you win xTekken forever as far as I’m concerned :stuck_out_tongue:

Nah, you’re not nitpicking - more data is better. I added the note about projectile reflection - I’ll have to have a play around with it. Nice tip vs. Dhalsim, but you’re right, reflection and hitting Dhalsim’s limbs would be some real next-level stuff. Maybe if we’re still playing this in a couple of years :wink:

HEY! I googled my PSN and happened to find this thread! haha! Well I’ll share a sneaky little tip with you guys. I had it in one of my matches but some of them are lesser known.

When you tag in Lei, Do your Razor Rush combo and cancel it into the Dragon stance. As soon as you get into Dragon Stance, press Forward and LK to go into crane stance.

You have a couple of different options:

  1. If they stand right up after being knocked down, you can go immediately into the Crane stance TK chain for free damage.
  2. If you think they are going to wake up with an EX 1-Hit Reversal, use the Crane Stance MP to go RIGHT through it. I guess it is invincible. I use it to throw people off. Even had another good Lei player by the name of Jack_Slater_X do an EX Flying Lotus and it went right through it. Time it so that it will activate when they wake up.
  3. If you think they will wake up with a multi hit reversal (such as Kazuya or Juri), use the Crane Stance MK to knock them right out of it and assess the situation. I usually go straight into the TK chain from Crane. The MK usually stops these two characters wake up options for sure. I’m pretty sure it can stop more but these are the main ones I can think of.
  4. You can frame trap them with MP if they wake up blocking, and then go into the TK chain. This is mostly for mashers and they usually fall for this one every time.

If you learn to mix this in along with tiger crumple (Doesnt work on Guile), Drunken stance 50/50, and just flat out stance baiting (faking a stance and then jumping right over them), you will see your Lei improve greatly.

Also good stuff. Didn’t even know about the Snake into Panther. Been trying to find some use for panther . I found some setups but they are risky.

Last thing, for Heihachi, if you are in drunken stance and YOU TIME IT CORRECTLY, you can keep him at bay with the Drunken stance MK. Then when he lands you can hit him with the 50/50 mix up. I’m sure this applies to more characters as well. Man Lei is so great!

Yeah I’ve seen that crane stuff done before; its pretty cool. If I’m ever messing around with crane, I’ll usually go for situations 1 or 4 as you say.

But the other stuff is news to me. Can’t wait to get home and try it out!

Some good science there for sure - I’ll update the top posts once I have a chance to hit the lab and get some specifics. I did notice in one of your replays your cheeky switch to crane after a tag in - was wondering what the setup was for. Very nice.

And yeah, Lei is great fun.

EDIT: updated first post with some basics from the above quoted technology.

Yeah I actually did that on accident one day and got in the lab and played around with it. I was in the lab with another Lei player and we were just testing out a whole bunch of reversals. Crane stance in my opinion is the best stance hands down. If you do a hard hitting and scaling combo, you tag Lei in and do that Crane stance juggle cancel and if you get the Crane stance TC landed then you can get 300+ off of that.

Also correction, it is better to do the Crane Stance Medium punch to stop reversals, even Juri and Kazuya. You can still use MK but it takes strict timing.

I’ve started using that crane :mp: - pretty nuts. I wish we had hitbox/hurtbox information…

EDIT: hotbox => hitbox

Same here man. I wish we had some frame data on him.

Street11 was nice enough to test everything and compile it here:

Has the link for the google doc too. It’s been pretty accurate for me so far. The only way I was able to figure out that st.lp links into st.hp.

Thanks bro. Appreciate it