Let's Play: Zangief vs. Seth

Seth gief

Let’s face it guys. This matchup is downright broken and hands down the worst in the game.
I feel like we need to know absolutely every aspect of this match, ranges, game-plans, tactics if we want to compete.

Dedicated Community Thread.

**Since SSF4 is going to be the major tournament game for this year, no use focusing on AE stuff yet, have to work with what we got.

We all know the moves that rape us and can leave that till later. I want to delve into the gnitty gritty of things about seth.

Getting In on Seth

This requires PURE AND RAW patients. Since you’ll more than likely be pushed back to max range, let’s start there. There are numerous things you can while at the mercy of his max range stretch arms.

A.) Cr. :lk: O-S Regular GH (Best Option)

  • This poke can easily hit the arms recovery and is pretty failsafe
  • Since his arms only take one hit of damage from an EX-GH there is no need to waste the meter
  • The regular GH will close some good distance

B.) Sit and watch patterns

  • Things like is he mixing up sonic boom speeds, walk forward fake-outs, walk forward :hp: to combo the sonic booms
  • His sonic booms do barely any damage on block. Seriously just block.

B.2.) Side note: STOP LARIATING!

  • At max range this is USELESS. You’ll be able to get 2-3 sections of a meter bar at most during a round.
  • He can punish it this easily and it’s a tight window hit him.
  • Only KKK lariat can connect since it hits low on startup
  • The sonic booms put down a lot of block stun so trying to lariat the arms after is VERY VERY difficult.
  • If anything use it sparingly

C.) Focus-attack

  • Don’t use this too often as it’s predictable, but a solid tool nonetheless

  • This is widely underused in this matchup. If seth is not sitting on two meters of EX and you see a sonic boom coming, start focusing the sonic boom (likely to follow up with standing fierce arms). If you if you see the arms keep charging and aim for a level (1) focus attack crumple. Even if it whiffs you’ll be at better positioning then you were.

  • Best case scenario: You crumple him and get your in on seth.

D.) Psychic-SPD

  • Regarded as a generally bad idea. You whiff and he’ll be across the screen with his wall-jump kick punishing you in no time.

  • This is ONLY if you know EXACTLY what he is doing. Who am I kidding, this is a random tactic. Spin and hope.

  • Not a good option, but it exists.

E.) Fire-ball Banish

  • If you see a medium sonic boom, BANISH IT.
  • Slow sonic booms he can bait with and punish with ease
  • Fast booms you can’t banish on reaction, it’s too fast

F.) Standard GH

  • If seth is just throwing out arms you can just as easily his the recovery with a standard GH


The mid-range is the half-way point to the game plan. Seth is limited in his options at this point. His arms can be punished on ground and on jump back if he throws them out. Dash back can be reacted to and GH-ed over to.

Seth options are the following:

A.) Jump-back :hp:

  • this can be easily used to bait out lariat, then do a deep arms (since it hits overhead)

  • If Gief tries to GH over it will get beat out by the arms

B.) Teleport

  • All depends on screen position, use your best judgement

So what do you do now?

Best-option: KKK Lariat or Block.

Most seth’s will get out of trouble immediately. Very few will risk the EX-GH bait.

If you get hit, you Repeat the Above steps.

Close Range

This is you’re one and probably only opportunity to annihilate seth.


A.) Option-Select Pokes

  • You need this knockdown, you will YEARN for this knockdown
  • S. :lk: / S. :lp: / cr. :lk: O~S EX-GH

All other options at this point are irrelavent.

(Some of this stuff can be applied to our other arch-matchup, Guile)

Seth carries some quirky attributes to his hitboxes where certain combos can hit walking up, but jumping in deep do not.

Ex #1: cr. :lk: cr. :lk: s. :mp: s. :lp: xx EX-GH

If you do this combo walking up you have to delay the s. mp slightly (difficult to do if you can do the above combo 95% consistently)

(If you’re too quick or simply doing the combo on point you’ll get the close :mp: and the combo will be dropped.)

Ex #2: Cross-Up Splash > mixup

Seth is unique to that the cross up splash does a TON of push-back on hit when seth is crouched(which he usually will be). His EX-machine gun kick has auto-correct and invincibility properties which will make meaty splash completely punishable. (not to mention reseting you after)

Also his SRK is auto-correctable as well, but the timing is far more strict. Don’t expect to see it too often.


1.) Combo

You have (2) hit-confirm combos you can do after you cross up splash him

A.) cr. :lk cr. lk: xx EX-GH

  • best option after a landed cross-up splash for 263 total damage

B.) cr. :lp: s. :lk: s. :lk: xx EX-GH

  • If you’re not too confident with your cr. :lk: then use this, but keep in mind it only does 243 damage (with splash like the above)

2.) Tick > SPD

  • I don’t recommend this as being a good option, the combos will land you a guaranteed knock-down
    and perfect positioning to read his next move instead of going for big damage.

  • After (2) :lp: you’re out of :lp: SPD range. If you’re going to tick make sure it’s only one hit otherwise you will be out of range entirely (either cr. :lk or cr. :lp: will do)

3.) KKK Lariat

  • Not enough room for a cr. :lk: > KKK Lariat

(Again not a recommended option, only if you don’t have meter should you use this)


1.) Tick > SPD

  • If you have no meter (which you probably won’t from getting on him in the first place). Go for the damage, either you can risk a blockstring

(cr. :lp: cr. :lp: cr. :lp: s. :mp:)

which will push you away and give him a free escape. Worst case scenario is he jump back :fp: or neutral jump into combo. When you get in on seth, MAKE IT COUNT

2.) Read Them.

  • Seth has a few options here: Neutral Jump, backdash, teleport, jump back fierce, Mash SRK

Best option for seth: teleport

Best Option for Gief if seth Teleports: Auto-correct Greenhand chase down. Otherwise you’re back at ground zero

Corner Game:

Inevitably you’ll probably put Seth in the Corner

Big thing to remember here is that his wall jump carries him FULL SCREEN. He’ll be back in the middle of the stage in less than (2) seconds. Not to mention his toe taps shut down all of gief’s option on the ground. You cannot anti-air it.

There is one option. Headbutt.


Good seth players know this and will bait it out by jump back fierce. To counter act this, use jumping head-butt IMMEDIATELY after leaving the ground to try and tag his jump back fierce. If you see him wall bounce do it at the top arch of your jump. Most of the time a headbutt is a ONE HIT STUN. This is the game ender for seth.

One Level-3 Focus attack + a Heavy SPD = over 50% damage.

Something to remember here, Closing distance with seth in the corner is retarded. He can jump and be on the other side in an instant.

Stay in the near Max range of seth’s s. :hp:

This gives you enough range to close distance slightly and pressure him into doing a wall jump.

This simply takes practice and reaction. You need to have the headbutt Meet his FOOT. THE GIEF WALL OF JUSTICE. It will stun ON COUNTER HIT. Practice at what arch the wall dive kick comes out at and get used to stuffing it.

I’ll be updating this throughout the week.

Figured this will be a nice start

Something should be added to this page : you can stun Seth in one single hit, with neutral jump HP headbutt (counter hit). I use it at middle range, trying to counter his own j.HP. If you manage to stun him with a fully charged Ultra 1, you can almost kill him in one combo.

Dhalsim is as bad or a worse matchup. Once he’s got full screen, there’s nothing a Zangief can do.

With both Dhalsim and Seth you can know all the aspects you like. Barring luck, Zangief simply doesn’t have the tools to get close if they have got full screen away and know what they are doing.

honestly? THATS THE WHOLE MATCH-UP. I mean yeah there are important things to help you win a match, but it always seems to come down counter hit headbutt - which is baitable against snipe heavy Seth’s. Learn the jump distances for Gief as well…Seth’s foot speed is VERY lacking, so while he can punish short jumps with his lightening legs, most WONT…if Seth is on the ground and a good distance away…don’t fear jumping…even with Ultra (1) (in Super)…as the damage is chump change and Seth will make more damage fro ylou trying to avoid it in the first place.

Aggresive GHs actually do well in this match-up.

  • :bluu:

No…Sim isn’t worse. Pain in the ass to close distance? Yeah. However, once Gief gets in, Sim’s escape options are limited. Seth on the other hand is an escape artist who can build more meter. I’ll fight a GREAT Sim before I’ll happily engauge a decent Seth. Only thing sim has going for him is HP and stun.

  • :bluu:

It’s all about the corner. Good seths will only Try and wall jump on knockdown vs you because they are afraid of headbutt. So the key is to back them to the corner now the match is in your favor wait and react. Every time they walk or jump back look at that as a victory dont worry about chip damage at all in this match. Look for patterns lariet can be useful in this matchup to punish jumpback fierce or standing hp with kick do this only if you see a pattern. Also make sure you take advantage of anything stupid they do like jump in aa lariet that for sure never just block. Also if the are dumb enough to try a wall jump headbut also I like starting the match with a headbut sometimes it gets the stun. Be agressive on knock down I’m not going to tell you how to run a mix up/vortex just do it and feel free to gh os like in the akuma matchup. I was able to beat damdies Seth on the stream at evo easily he’s no Sabin or that good west coast Seth but i can beat seths that I am better than in most cases still a crapy match-up.

^west coast Seth is onlinetony

Anyone have Vangief’s number? I’d like to know his approach to the match. I’ve played Online Tony in a couple local tourneys (cool guy btw), and he told me after he played Vangief a number of times, he believes the match is 5/5 after that, no joke. I had a few more games with Tony in some casuals where I got a round or two off him, and I will say this, it’s all about the spacing. You can NOT jump in on Seth when you’re even 2/3 of the screen away. Seth can hit EX SRK to punish you from that distance. I thought I was safe with that, but no beans.

Yeah, Seth can suck/pull in a hit from about 2/3 in…he can counter a jumpin with EX SRK and EX Lightning legs (I can’t spell lthat shit sorry)…and EX SRK leads to river dance mix-up oppurtunities…though that’d be suicide so a smart seth would prolly run back.
EDIT - He can also EX tandem that ass in if feeling risky/confident in his linking

And with match-up numbers are we looking at it from a reality stand point or a perfect scenerio stand point…perfectly played keepaway with Seth…Gief just doesn’t win. With errors…Gief stands a chance because of the stupid stun Seth has (sorry I’ve started playing Seth lately and nothing is more frustrating than having the lowest hitpoints AND being dizzied SO damn easy).

Now in AE, this match-up changes DRASTICALLY since he can’t snipe anymore. Bulldogging should become EXTREMELY effective because as mentioned, wall jumping is headbutt bait and Seth no longer has anything to make Gief ‘stand up’…though there really isn’t a reason to even block low against Seth unless your within s.mp range. 5/5 in AE? I might believe it…though I don’t know how improved his boom game is.

  • :bluu:

No, 5/5 currently is what Tony told me :slight_smile: Mofo has one annoying Seth, tell you that much.


I would like to at least make this a competitive match when i play it. But i only play a half decent seth like once every 3 or so weeks. So i am pretty free to a RUSH DOWN seth using BnB online cheese tactics.

Basically river dance shit to leading to LL combos, which I’m totally clueless how to punish let alone block sometimes, and secondly “meaty” dive kicks off the block stun of a SB.

If someone has some strats for this, please post and or direct me to the appropriate vids. Could be a good addition to the OP.

also OPer, nuff respect, good post

Oh I read it, I just don’t call it 5/5 in Super…looking at it from both sides…Seth loses, Gief does not win. Gief cannot ‘beat’ Seth, but Seth can ‘lose’ the fight. 5/5 ensinuates that two opponenets of equal skill will pull even matches…I can’t co-sign that (in Super…I’d believe it in AE though), but OT got more rep than I have so take what I say as you will.

Rush down Seth loses to Gief though shrug…the areas where rush down is affective…belong to Gief. The range where Seth >>>> Gief though is obvious and predictable and leads to random victories for Gief…IMO.

  • :bluu:

Heres me beating an A ranked seth called CaptainButtocks about 20 minutes ago. I messed up a bunch and still won. I need to work on my execution. But heres the thing you can deal alot of damage quick once you get him into the corner.

lmao, i think the only reason you won is because that seth player was god awful.

One of the things i keep getting killed with is exactly this. What i didn’t realize is that Seth can alter his wall dive at any point into a dive kick, bait your HB then punishing hugely. At least full screen wall dives.

I only use headbutt on corner escape dives. They see you up there and immediately press roundhouse, then you get a CH stun > Ultra.

I’ve beaten so many seths using this. Decent ones too.

For, me it’s about absorbing jump fierce and sonic booms, building some meter in the process, and letting them back themselves into the corner, where I can hit em with U2 when they try to jump away. I use normals to stuff standing/jumping fierce and trade with headbutt like Porter does for stun.

I can’t say if he’s a good Seth or not, but IMO he didn’t play the match-up right from his side (you did however). He gave you too much ground for FREE, you should have to FIGHT to walk in…he shouldn’t be just doing backflips backwards and trying to land EXTREMELY predictable snipes, as that leads to you scoring a c.PPP knockdown and gaining more ground. Only thing he did right was try and bait you to do a lariat so he can river dance out of the corner. He also had several oppurtunities to put a SERIOUS hurt on you that he didn’t capitalize. Landing a single c.jab should at LEAST finish with a c.mp XX mk lightning leg. Honestly…he looked scared…I recognize it :rofl: cause thats me sometimes.

  • :bluu:

Yeah you don’t do it full screen, thats DP -> river dance -> shenannigans. Just remember that Seth only has ONE low hitting attack worth using (c.lk), c.mk needs to be interjected in a combo to actually land because of it’s start-up. And c.PPP > full screen wall dive. At 2/3 screen its a different story because of his dive…though in AE the dive got nerfed to nigh useless.

  • :bluu:

Yep. Wall dive == air tatsu heh. Just headbutt that shit. And fudge I hate the one hit dizzy as Seth. And if you get hit with it in the corner…its GGPO…can’t really teleport out, so your only real escape option is the super predictable DP since teleport can be lariated on reaction.

  • :bluu:

Seth should never footsy…he has great pokes - but the damage difference is never in his favor. If I see a Gief trying to absorb, then I’ll be content letting him absorb while trying to keep him full screen and not giving up any ground. If you absorb too much I might try and bait something I can punish like nj w/ sonic boom mixups in hopes of you trying to c.lariat a snipe so I can s.fp or tandem to do my damage. U2 is great and all against Seth, but in it’s super form shrug, I’ll stay grounded unless your committed to something I can safely punish.

Seth likes getting Gief commited to a move and keeping him full screen. I don’t care if you have revenge meter or not as if you get in once I’m more than likely dead ANYWAYS. I’ve beatin a few decent Giefs with my Seth just because they tried building ultra from full screen and got wittled down…by the time they started getting aggressive I had enough meter to keep them pushed out. The only thing that has given me trouble in the Seth/Gief match-up AS Seth is aggresive GHs. Its punishable and dangerous, but if Gief can close the distance early on before Seth has gotten meter and rhythm, it can be a frustrating match. Once Seth gets you full screen his job is to keep you there…but if he never gets you full screen, then his options are limited as Gief controls so much friggin space.

  • :bluu:

Yeah there are alot of a ranked people with 3600pp that are awful. It seems like he’s used to playing really scrubby giefs and getting away with easy wins.

I love I post a video of me playing a match there’s always some guy who joined the forum a month ago and has no tourney cred saying the only reason you won is that the other guy sucked. I won because I pined him in the corner was it perfect no but i like unrealistic coment it was productive yours just pisses me off. Let’s see some vids of you beating “good” seths weaponer.

when i play one ill post it. and stop crying, because that is the only reason you won.