How to understand timing in this game better?

For some reason I still can’t get timing down when executing links/combos/whatever. I got my stick this week and I’m still getting used to it, and when it comes down to linking/canceling ANY move into shoru with Sakura I can’t do it. :confused: Any help/tips?

I think you mean cancel? As far as I know, most of her combos involving shorus are cancels, not links. You are probably either not completing the motion or not doing it fast enough.

Here is a bunch of tips I made up about getting used to sticks and developing execution. Some of them are there to help you figure out what you are doing wrong.

The article linked above is a good read.
But if its not the execution maybe you are one of those people that need know the science of the game to perform.
Street Fighter 4(actually i think all fighting genre games) runs at 60frames per seconds aka 60FPS.

Heres a good read on frames.

Since you listed Sakura as the character you where using I will use her as examples.

Sakura’s cr.LP takes 3 frames to start, and has 2 active frames(hit frames). Now if you want to cancel the cr.lp into light shoryu you need to input/buffer/negative edge the motion, to CANCEL the active frames into a light shoryu. You can not cancel startup frames or recovery frames.

A Link is where a move hit then recovers and you have enough time to start another move to hit again and combo it. Here’s a example.
Sakura’s cr.LP when it hits gives you a 6 frame advantage. This means any move that has less than 6 frames of start up can be linked. Most commonly with Sakura you want to link cr.LP into cr.FP.
cr.FP has 4 frames of start up.
So it would go
Cr.LP 3frames start>Hits within 2 frames>Has 6 frames of advantage>Recovers from cr.LP>Cr.FP 4 frame start>Hits

Also on the forums you will see notation like such
"~" is link
"xx" is cancel
cr.LP ~ cr.FP xx Ex Tatsu

Sakuras Frame Guide:

Basic tip for linking: Wait until the yellow hit sparks disappear after your first hit before hitting the next button.

You can only cancel into a special from a LINKED move, not a chained move. Chained moves are what you get when you mash cr. LP or cr. LK. For you to be able to cancel from one of those, you will actually have to link the last one. What that means is that the timing is a little delayed.

It might actually be harder with Sakura than other characters. Try playing as Zangief and learning this combo:

cr. LP x3, standing LK -> EX Green hand

You won’t be able to cancel standing LK into EX Green hand unless you slightly delay the st. LK (instead of just chaining from cr.LP to st. LK)

Hope that makes you understand it a little bit better. Also, one advantage to trying to link things on an arcade stick is you can use plinking. It might be a little difficult, but if you can learn it you’ll be able to link a lot more consistently: