So you have an interest in Gen?
Oh you’re serious?
Let’s start with your most important problem, which is not knowing what to ‘do with Gen’. Most people have this problem and as a result they end up jumping around doing crane j.mk and random Oga’s, but Gen really is a ‘footsie’ character. Gen wants to be at midrange and poke at the opponent and make them do stuff that can be punished. For example: you press s.mp and Akuma does his s.hk (the roundhouse kick) you block it and on block from most distances you can simply mash hp hands and it’ll hit). If you haven’t already read this, atleast a part of it as it will really help you understand what footsies ‘are’ as it’s such a abstract concept:
This basically means he has great normals, so lets take a look at some of them:
**Mantis c.mp: **fast startup, good range, and probably your ‘to go’ poke in AE. I say this because c.mp can combo into hk hands. There are multipl,e way of doing that but I just press c.mp and then piano hp, mp, hp, hp with my index finger and middle finger. A dangerous poke and a good way to hitconfirm his super (or fadc, get to that later).
**mantis s.mp: **A great poke that can stuff a lot of things, like Yuns divekick, Rufus’ divekick, random pokes in a footsie battle. I throw it out randomly all the time and get counterhits all day because it’s so godlike. Has +5 frame advantage if you hit it on block up close aswell so that’s cool too as you can frametrap people with it (as long as they don’t mash srk). So yeah, also acts as a divekick anti-air.
**mantis s.hk: **Has improved a lot in AE. Comes out pretty fast, does solid damage, good to throw out now and then.
**mantis s.hp: **One of the main anti-airs, like it most of Gens anti-air it may trade with your opponents jump in attack but that’s a problem Gen has and we have to deal with.
**mantis c.hk: **beastly move that has crazy range and knocks down the opponent. I like to use it after I do s.mp in footsies to see if they have pressed a button, this usually wins and knocks them on their ass.
**mantis c.hp: **Good poke to use now and then, good range, stuffs a lot of pokes (godlike vs for example chun li as it beats a lot of her pokes, ha take that you bitch!). Also important is that it can act as a solid anti-air. This will take some practice, but it’s really good for AA’ing deep jump ins.
**crane c.hk: **Arguably his best and most solid anti-air. Has 5 active frames now in AE so it will trade less if you time it right. Downside is that you have to switch or be in crane stance to perform it obviously. But once you fluidly switch stances it will be no problem.
Time for a video example of excellent footsies/poking. This is Amiyu, currently considered the best (or one of the best) Gens in the world and 1# in the arcade rankings:
As you can see he uses a lot of the pokes I have mentioned just now and constantly is in and out poking range.
You may have noticed these are almost all mantis pokes. That’s because his crane ground pokes really aren’t all that great, infact some of them are just horrible. I basically regard mantis as the ground stance or ‘footsie’ stance and will only go into crane on the ground if I want to go for the overhead (s.mp) or underhead (s.hp, to mix it up after I already did an overhead). Some people likes to use crane c.mp as a poke aswell and it is pretty decent.
Crane stance is my ‘air’ stance so to speak. His jump arc in crane has massive range and can really surprise opponents who throw a fireball thinking it was safe etc. His crane air normals like j.hp are amazing and can stuff or air to air almost everything if you pressed earlier than your opponent. Oh and ofcourse crane j.hk x2 leads into crane U1 so that’s a plus right there. Another important thing to note is that mantis and crane stances both have different jump arcs and walkspeeds. Mantis stance has a slightly slower walkspeed and a shorter, more bunny hop-like jump arc. Crane stance has a faster walkspeed and a very very long jump arc that can often suprise opponents (they may throw a fireball thinking you can’t jump and punish…but you can). Use this to your advantage, mix the stances up to subconsiously mess with your opponent. It’s a very important part of playing Gen in my opinion and no one ever really mentions it much. This, again, adds to the footsies element of Gen, sometimes you’ll be faster, sometimes you’ll neutral jump with crane stance and in the air you press ppp to automatically switch back to mantis stance as soon as you land etc. Which leads me to my next point…
In mantis you will atleast need:
c.mp> hp hands, this is a main bnb for footsies. It can lead to super on hit and you can FADC the 4th hit of the hands into s.mp> s.hp, s.mk> lk gekiro for solid damage and momentum. The s.hp and s.mk is the target combo in case you hadn’t discovered that yet. It used to be s.mk into hands as a bnb but in AE c.mp has better startup, slightly better damage, and the same range so…use this.
c.lk> c.lp> s.hp, s.mk> lk gekiro (on Seth, Sagat, Cammy and Cody you can do hk gekiro), Another must know bnb combo for Gen in AE. This one is tricky because the c.lp to s.hp is a one frame link, but honestly it’s well worth practising. You can start this combo by a jump in (crane j.mk, mantis j.mk) or just from the ground if you happen to hit the c.lk.
In crane you *can do: *
*c.mp> roll (any strenght), *honestly I don’t combo with crane a lot, it is my support stance and sure sometimes if I like to be flashy I’ll combine mantis and crane for combos but that’s for another time maybe
j.mk>s.lp>c.lk (you can follow up by changing stances with mantis c.hk), a decent combo, like a lot of ground crane stuff it isn’t the most safe thing to do.
Another good blockstring I still like to do from vanilla is s.mp> s.mk> hands. It pushes people away quite a lot (into the corner lol).
Anyway these combos are what I would say essential, especially the mantis ones. Now there are a LOT of other combos you can do, and most will come to naturally after playing awhile, some are just flashy and not very practical in terms of damage. I won’t go into further detail on these combos because they don’t have any place in this thread. The two mentioned mantis combos alone + the FADC combo are pretty much the staple of a good Gen. I barely even use that much other combos, most of my damage comes from these combos + footsies/hitting pokes. Things like switching stances in combos should only be done if you feel comfortable doing so. Examples of this are crane j.hk x2> a mantis combo of your choosing, or mantis s.mp> crane c.mp> roll.
Oh and if you have trouble doing HK gekiro (waterfall kicks) watch this video, it shows clearly the timing and also shows his hands:
The timing for the lk version is practically the same, except shorter. it’s 6 hits so you will gradually speed up and the 4,5, 6 hits will be quickly after eachother. You can vary this a lot and you will need to for some walldive cross-up setups, but we won’t get into that since that’s a little advanced.
Supers and Ultra’s
Because Gen has two stances (o rly) he also has two supers and Ultra’s at his disposal. First let’s talk supers. His mantis super is arguably the best super in the game, at least top 3. It does very good damage, can be hitconfirmed from his bnb combo (basically any hp hands combo), has crazy range (hp version reaches nearly fullscreen, lk version has invincibility frames on start-up), and can punish A LOT. When I say a lot, I really mean it. A few examples are doing hp version super when Akuma throws an air fireball, Ibuki’s kunai airthrow, and after blocking Rufus’s c.hp, but there are a lot more of these type of punishes which I may get into later in another post.
Crane super is basically the best anti-air (Hakans ultra comes close, but is stationary) in the entire goddamn game. I mean holy shit, the hk version reaches like 3/4 of the screen and has 0+1 frame start-up. What this means for you is that anytime your opponent jumps in at you or neutral jump anywhere but about fullscreen you can activate the super and it will grab them, even if they are about to land again. Oh you can also combo into it by doing crane j.hk (x2). It’s almost ridiculous I’m suprised they never nerfed it[SIZE=1] capcom dont nerf it pls ;_;[/SIZE]
Let’s talk Ultra’s. First up the U1 set. His U1 is usually the preferred set of ultra’s. His mantis U1 is basically like his mantis super except it does more damage. It can be combo’ed after doing mantis super for good damage, but much like his mantis super it can also be used to punish a wide variety of things which, like I said, I may get into in a later post.
Crane U1 is like a shittier version of his crane super. It has way less range and worse start-up. However it can still be useful as an anti-air if your opponent is prone to doing neutral jumps, or if you just know your opponent is going to jump in at you, just make sure to be in range so practice that a bit before you whiff that shit. Oh and like his super you can also combo this from crane j.hk (x2). This ultra doesn’t do as much damage as the mantis ultra, but regardless if you have the oppertunity to use why the fuck not, all in all a pretty decent ultra.
Gens U2…I have to be honest I almost never use it. His crane U2 is great against fireball characters since you can jump and imidiately do the ultra (by doing the tigerknee motion) if your opponent throws a fireball and it will hit them as they can’t recover fast enough, unless it’s guile. However I personally feel mantis U2 is pretty crappy and while there have been made interesting discoveries of crane U2 cross-up setups, and oga cross-up setups after doing mantis U2…I just have no interest in this set. Maybe another Gen player can elaborate on his U2 and give a list of pro’s and cons
Shenanigans, safejumps, and other stuff
Gen has a lot of tricks up his sleeve. That’s why a lot of Gens have contributed to making this handy little spreadsheet which includes safejumps, walldive cross-ups, and even super and Ultra cross-ups if you like to be cheeky in a casual match:
At the very least, learn all of the possible safejumps in the first column, as they will save your life and make your jumpins…well…safe!
I would also suggest checking my Gen shenanigans sticky thread as it contains a lot of info on footsies aswell as other little tricks and walldive cross-ups that aren’t mentioned anywhere else. A lot of good stuff going on in that thread.
Nice wall of text bro, but I need visuals
I know that feel bro. Check out the video thread and observe how people play Gen. Playstyles can differ a lot. But the general consensus is that the best Gen players are Amiyu and Xian at the moment, so check them out on youtube and see how they play Gen. It should give you ideas on how to aproach Gen and may inspire you!
I would recommend to check out:
- Amiyu (topranked Japanese Gen in the arcades)
- Xian (recently beat daigo and won a tourney in Singapore, great Gen)
- Warriorbysand (interesting Gen player on XBL)
- Redwolfx (very unique Gen player, uses a lot of tricks though, not my preferred playstyle)
Well there you have it, pretty much the basics of what a starting Gen needs to absolutely know, understand, and be able to execute. Feel free to ask questions and other Gen veterans please give feedback and thoughts. I will probably edit this a lot in the future and add stuff.