Learning Other Characters

Hey everyone,

I’ve used Balrog since I’ve gotten into Street Fighter 4. I have studied the match-up threads of Balrog against other characters. Other than that, I haven’t fully learned anyone else.

Should I put in time in learning other characters and will it make you better? Or should I stick to just learning one character?

It definitely helps your game if you know how to play other characters, as you will know that character inside-out. But I always preferred to specialize with one character (two max) in any fighting game. Mastering one character is hard enough.

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Well, I’m actually in the same position you’re in. I’ve invested a lot of time into one character and I’ve studied some of the matchups for that character, but I feel I’m still lacking something. I’ve noticed that a lot of the good players I play against have a main, but they can use multiple characters pretty well (a grappler, a charge character, shoto, etc.).

I’m thinking about trying to learn some other characters because I feel as if it will help my overall game. I’ll still have a main and I won’t invest near as much time into these other characters, but I just think learning, say, a charge character, will help with my defense or something. You know, because you have to hold down back with them a lot.

Daigo only plays with Ryu, but we can see that he can play with Guile, Guy, etc. as well. I’m sure he’s played with a lot of the other characters at one point or another and it probably helped with his Ryu game, but I’m not sure. I would imagine it certainly couldn’t hurt to learn a few other characters anyway.

O yea, I definitely know what you mean. What I meant to say is that spend most of your time with one or two characters max. You can spend some time in learning other characters but I think it’s much better to stick with one or two for the most part.

I haven’t been playing SF4 long enough to know how to play a variety of characters but I’ve been playing Tekken enough to do this. For example, my main in Tekken is Xiaoyu and Hwoarang, but I know how to play just about anyone fairly well in that game, with the exception of animal characters like Kuma. Knowing a lot of characters definitely helps my game in Tekken, and I’m sure it’s the same way in SF.

Do the challenges for all characters and spend about 45 mins-1 hr with each in training mode learning/practicng the range of moves, BnBs anti airs, ultra set ups, etc. It’s gonna take a long time but it really pays off. I’m about half way done with the cast.

I imagine working on C to Shining C would be the most immediately useful way to learn more about difficult/mysterious matchups. Ideally you’d be able to bring your actual experience of punishes, wakeups and desperation tactics as every other character into matches as your main. Getting C rank isn’t especially difficult: it requires roughly 20 wins. But if you’re playing a new character that could take 50-100 or more matches to obtain. In the course of doing so, you may find a character to focus on aside from your main, or maybe even a replacement.

Naturally you’d need to spend time in training mode and challenge mode wouldn’t hurt either. So I think getting a non-main to C is probably the most comprehensive way to gain a basic but visceral understanding about the matchup.

YMMV, but this strategy has been working for me so far.

I like to learn all characters because if you know what the character can do, what there moves are, what are some strategics for them, I feel that you have already have a small advantage. Everyone will play someone differently but the characters moves stay the same. Study your opponent and see if he has a hole.

It doesn’t exactly improve your game to learn another character, but if you choose the right one to complement your main then it can help when it comes to counter-picking. It’s also good to have a character that plays completely differently from your main for when you get bored.

I would NEVER try to pick up more than 2 characters, 3 at the very most. I mean sure feel free to mess around with more, but don’t put the time into actually learning more than 2-3. It’s impossible to learn how to play a ton of characters at a top tier level, the less you play generally the better you’ll be because you understand that character better than somebody who spreads their time out.

So I vote continue with Rog, and pick up a different character to complement his playstyle. Personally I play Rog and Akuma, although there are definitely better alts as far as covering the counter-picking bases go, I just really like Akuma. It’s best to choose an alt for Rog that doesn’t need to be really close to do damage, since Rog is already useless outside of close-mid range. I’d go with anything but a rushdown (i.e. Viper, Rufus, etc.) or a grappler (Gief, Hawk, Hakan, even Abel), so that really leaves you with zoning characters (Ryu, Sagat, Gouken, Juri, Guile, Deejay, and to a lesser extent Akuma/Ken).