I'm sitting here trying to figure out the design philosophy for Elena and coming up completely blank



So, I was at work today and had a lot of time to think about Elena(That sounds way creepier than I want it to lol) and for the life of me I can’t figure out what character archetype was Capcom trying to conform her to? At first glance you think she would be footsie character, but that doesn’t appear true. Her normals aren’t amazing by any stretch of the imagnation(they aren’t terrible during the neutral game just not amazing) and unless you have godlike hit confirming abilities you aren’t getting much out of them. Her anti airs are terrible, to my knowledge outside of EX DP her best anti air is S.MP or S.MK. Both normals aren’t ideal and subject to trading a lot and even if you get a clean hit the damage isn’t anything to cause a concern for the opposing player. So if Elena doesn’t have meter there is no real fear in jumping in on her(smartly). At worst you will take 40-60 damage and that just isn’t scary in the slightest.

So, i started to think that maybe she was a mixup high/low kind of character, but that doesn’t appear to be true either. Her C.LK into C.LP is a one frame link and unplinkable(possible to blink it) so that takes away a lot from her low game, and moves like Mallet Smasher are easy to read and can be beaten clean but a lot of crouching normals. There is almost no reason for your opponent to actually block low unless you have consistently great execution or willing to bet it all on C.MK into any number of her unsafe special moves. This could be remedied if Lynx tail wasn’t so punishable on block, it’s a complete gamble to throw this move out based on a read. If you guess right the damage(unless you have EX and ultra) isn’t scary in the slightest, therefor I don’t think it will do a proper job of conditioning an opponent. If you guess wrong you’re at very best -7, so if you’re playing a half way competent player you’re eating a pretty big punishment for rolling the dice.

This all wouldn’t be THAT bad if her normals up close made up for that, but they really don’t. All her normals are negative so it’s extremely difficult to set up any real frame traps. I was shocked reading the frame data on her normals. What were they thinking? I haven’t looked through everybody’s but I’ve never seen normals so damn negative on block and same goes for the plus frames(or lack of) of her normals on hit.

So overall she isn’t really scary during the neutral game and is even worse up close, so what was Capcom trying to accomplish with her? I Highly doubt they intended to make a bad character on purpose, so I’m thinking(more like praying) that I am completely missing the way you’re suppose to play Elena. Maybe one day she will just click with me or I’ll see somebody else playing her that opens my eyes to her true potential. I really want her to be great! I pretty much bought Ultra just to play her because I am honestly tired of all the other characters in the game. Right now she just seems completely lackluster in a lot of areas and every fight with her I am terrified of my opponent even if I know they aren’t the greatest.

She isn’t without positives though. I think both her ultras are VERY useful for their specific purposes and U1 deals a decent amount of damage. I think her floaty job actually works to her advantage in a lot of cases(At least when people aren’t use to them yet). Her forward and back walkspeed are pretty great and her slide is pretty useful. Other than that I REALLY struggle to see any other positives with her and I don’t even want to talk about the poor hitboxes on a LOT of her special moves, ugh,

Sorry for the poorly worded rant, but I just got off work and had some free time lol.


elena’s role in usf4 is the same as it was in third strike: to be a bad chun-li.


A big wall of derp.

Standing medium punch works as a good poke and anti air.
Jumping heavy punch has nice reach, at close range jumping heavy kick can juggle in the air

To get in:
You have forward medium kick or forward medium punch to hit crouches. You also have a special kick to hit crouches.
Crouching heavy kick has good reach, also has sliding heavy kick.

Cross up, jumping medium kick
Easiest thing to do after that is crouching medium kick to a special move

Focus attack isn’t bad though you can’t use any standing heavy attacks, best off just using crouching medium kick into a special move after a focus.

The down back punch move can link into a crouching light kick.

Moves are safe on block but the flying forward kick can’t hit crouching.
The backwards flip can be hit right away but is also safe on block.

A bit on the combo side

Back down back ex kick can be used to link into ultra without corner.

If I could request one thing it would be that slide kick can go under projectiles. Ex uppercut can’t cancel on block since Elena is jumping, if you want to spam out meter the best thing is down back ex punch, very quick anti crouch.


slide can go under projectiles, just not low projectiles like low TS or juri’s low fireball


It doesn’t seem as though capcom finished the character. She seems very poorly designed. *sigh * it sucks she seemed like an interesting character.


In previous games she was a footsie character with strong tick throw and strong high low mix ups.

In this game she’s a joke.


You guys make it sound like I’m the only one who uses Elena. Mostly have been using the new characters besides Hugo a lot.


I’ve been playing her non-stop since I got the Ultra update. It’s been the most frustrating experience of my life since I dropped Marvel 3. Capcom knows how to do it.


The most frustrating part is how inconsistent her hitboxes are. I’ve never seen a character have their oppenent fall out of special moves as much as her. Like every one of her specials can be punished on HIT if you’re too far away.


Justin and ChrisG just played her at Super Dojo, probably can pour some insight on how to approach her.


I definitely started playing 3rd strike many years after its prime, but I still have a crapload of hours playing the game over the last 6 years or so, most of which is with Elena. When SFxT came out, I was super hype to play Elena again in a new game, and while she wasn’t great, I feel like she did what she needed to do in the context of that game. She had options and felt like what she could do was thought out and workable.

Now come yesterday I was really hype to play her in an actual relevant game for the first time, and I was met with a completely different character than what I expected, and not in a good way. None of what she has flows smoothly anymore and so many pieces of her moveset and gameplay just don’t make sense.

In 3s, Lynx Tail is a joke and almost entirely useless. In Ultra, they pretended to make it worth something by using that as the one meter option to juggle into ultra instead of ex Spin Scythe, but this is mostly just an aesthetic difference. The normal versions are still worthless in most situations as far as I can tell, so no gain there.

Same goes for Rhino Horn. I’m not sure what they expected anyone to do with this special after the changes from the arcade version. I thought we’d be able to use it something like how it works in SFxT, where it’s good for meterless punishes and corner carry. Unfortunately now without cancelable crouching fierce, there’s no reliable way to combo into it, so the only thing it does is catch neutral jumps occasionally, but it’s not fast enough to be a good option.

I’m not quite sure what EX Spin Scythe’s purpose is supposed to be with EX Lynx being what’s obviously intended to be used for juggles. I also thought the days of not being able to combo crouching Chun with this were gone, but apparently not, because she STILL doesn’t fully get hit by this special. Thanks guys.

2 of her 4 target combos are entirely useless, they didn’t even try to figure out something to do with them. s.HP xx s.HK is negative on hit and you have to make contact with s.HP to begin with, and good luck ever doing that. j.MP xx j.HP doesn’t do… anything at all?

Mallet Smash hopping over people from close range is a total load of crap and contributes to her uselessness while up close to people. Not to mention the fact that it no longer has a hitbox until the very end means opponents can jump very recklessly, because why’s the worst she’s going to do?

Resets were a huge asset for her in 3s, and then in Ultra she has no such thing that I’ve found. The specials that launch or juggle simply don’t have the juggle properties for a normal to hit an opponent during them, even if you are in range. Not that it would probably matter, because if you were in range to land a normal for a reset, that means you’re too close to use mallet smash, thus taking away much of the potential upside of the reset.

Seeing things like this: “When trying to cancel Standing Heavy Punch into a special move and using Heavy Kick, Elena would perform her target combo instead - this has been fixed” listed as a change just confuse me. What world do the developers live in where they take away the ability to cancel crouch fierce, and then go “oh yeah we made stand fierce cancel better!” as if they see stand fierce being used on a regular basis? It’s like they haven’t used the move to see that it whiffs on things completely randomly. Like connecting a level 3 focus crumple it’ll hit (sometimes), but a lvl 2 on the same character and it’ll whiff. I can’t wrap my head around what is even going on with stuff like that, or where it seems to whiff on STANDING characters too at times. Special cancel status doesn’t matter if it barely ever makes contact with anything.

I dunno, I don’t think she’s a bad character, but she’s so terribly awkward feeling and definitely does not feel like a character that was worked on/balanced by someone who played her for years in 3s. So many issues seem like the product of a severe lack of testing or laziness. She just feels like a new character loosely based on Elena, not a new iteration of the character that’s been around for 15+ years


How are you to trying to connect the specials? Really its only her bnb that’s problematic based on the matchup, but its becoming more and more evident that the way Elena plays makes it so that that shouldn’t happen much. Lynx, for example should really only be used after a one hit attack string. In fact most of her specials seem to be meant to be used this way. They’ll probably fix it in the next patch, but if you play her correct and watch the spacing it shouldn’t be too hard to compensate

Her hurtbox is pretty damn good as well BTW. A lot of things whiff on her when crouching that would hit on the rest of the cast


^ this basically is really true, he is right that a crouching Elena whiffs a lot of move and Elena vs Elena also has that issue…SS falls out of a crouching Elena and so do a long of other moves making her own MU probably 6-4 and not 5-5 like Akumas lol. Back on topic though yea he is right how you do your combos matter for example i do just cr.lp cr.mp into LK SS to make sure my opp do not fall out at all, yea i lose damage and stun but i do it for consistancy and even on block i sometimes get away with it cause i’m spaced a decent amount away unlike mk SS where i get punished always after block which is funny considering that lk SS is more negative on block according to the frame data app. Honestly i think the app is wrong about some of Elena frame data because they also messed up on Fei Long data i mean they said Medium Chicken Wing was +38 on block…


Problem is that all versions of Lynx are hugely negative on block, so using it after one normal means you’re not hit confirming it, and you’re just giving away punishes a large amount of time against anyone who knows that they’re negative.

Mallet Smash’s minimum distance thing means it’s super telegraphed where and when it’s available. There’s no real threat of an overhead when you’re close to an opponent, and the huge frame disadvantage on all her lows is even more apparent from up that close, so you sit there having to try to push them away with filler normals first


She can combo out of her command OH :stuck_out_tongue:


jab to strong being 1 frame is ridiculous considering how often spin scythe stops hitting if you’re too far and to top it off it’s -7. at least make it worth the effort! it’s like playing pre buff rose all over again. shit, even short to jab is 1 frame so it’s difficult to make someone afraid of a low.

the damage she gets off of HK mallet smash cause it forces stand is awesome but it’s slower than balrogs prebuff overhead

i wish they’d fix those things and make stand rh or stand fierce airborne/throw invul (just a wish hah)

it just feels like i’d be better off playing rose instead


Stand roundhouse is throw invulnerable.


st. hk is also airborne. st.hk, c.mp, c.lp are fine, it’s her other normals that are ass


I play Viper so I’m used to slow ass mediocre normals. I honestly think Elena is just a counter poke character. That’s the only justification I can see for her walk speed increase, bad throw range, and very few normals that are advantageous on block.


counter poking goes into nothing though, so if that’s her design it’s a very poor one.

And viper has had mediocre normals because of her great specials. A luxury Elena also doesn’t have.