Her buttons are ridiculous. Arguably the best frame traps in the game. So many options for safe pressure…What made people consider E. Ryu and Ken to be better?
Well, first and foremost, they were actual shotos.
Aside from that, they had better defensive options, which was a pretty huge deal in SFIV thanks to FADC and invincible backdashes, and I believe they were better at beating divekick characters, which was fairly relevant.
Sakura was still really good though.
Fair enough. What you said is true, though, in a pedantic manner I would argue that she is a shoto because she is the student of the most famous one
I do notice that she absolutely blows up beginner and intermediate players, so maybe my opinion is skewed from not playing elite players with her.
I believe she was so good at her type of offense that she made some other characters (cough Cody cough) kind of redundant to play.
Yeah, Sakura’s amazing at lower/intermediate levels, since she’s pretty uncomplicated, has solid offense and neutral, hits like a truck from almost all situations and ranges, and is really hard to deal with if you haven’t practiced the matchup (in particular, she’s a bitch to AA).
She’s still really good at higher levels (generally considered upper mid iirc), but she can get put on the back foot more easily than the shotos since her backdash is pretty poor and her only invincible special is really slow and requires meter anyways. The shotos all also had a less linear neutral game and most of them weren’t bad on offense either, which helped.
Also calling Cody a worse Sakura is pretty accurate. But Cody was pretty mediocre.