My Amateur Necalli Guide

My hope is to learn all I can from you all, but this being an internet forum, I know better than to just ask for help outright. I’ve found it a much faster process to state what I believe, and then just wait to be corrected.

Necalli Notes:
(Notes for simplicity: Assume EX and CA can be supplemented for damage optimization. I’m using “>” as a general symbol for “links and/or cancels into.” I’ll be using simple terms like Ground Pound and DP instead of Necalli’s extravagantly ridiculous move names. Lastly, this document is written primarily as a guide to overcoming Necalli’s weaknesses, suggesting strategy for consistency rather than damage optimization.)
General information:
Necalli’s range is a weakness of his, as many things that should be punishable according to frame data simply aren’t due to your stubby limbs. Be mindful that there is a range where many other characters can poke at you from just beyond your reach. At this non-preferred range you either need to get good at preemptive CCs or change the range you’re fighting at. Every matchup has to be fought with a goal of avoiding that mid-close range that characters like Urien, Karin, Birdie and many others like to poke from.
Necalli has great rushdown at point-blank range, and surprisingly good zoning at long range with ground pound,, and Dp. Fight at these ranges instead of trying to go toe to toe with other character’s max range pokes.
Simplified: Every matchup has a preferred range, and yours is Not mid-range. Because of your stubby limbs, Long-range zoning or point-blank rushdown is preferred.

Game Plan:
· Your pressure consists of mixing up your 5-frame normals that lead into combos, meaty command grab, Cr.Mk>stomp, Overhead, J.hp>combo (one of the best J.Hpunches), CCs and your 3-frame jab.
· Necalli is really good when he has the enemy cornered. Use your presser tools listed above and Nj.Hk if you feel they may try to jump out.
· Necalli’s light stomp and ST>HK are two of your main tools, but both are unsafe if done too close. They are -4 on block, so try to only hit with “just the tip”.
· Necalli’s 3frame jab or DPs are wonderful for stuffing holes in block-strings.
· Cr.Lp>Cr.Lp (on counter hit) then Cr.Mk>L.stomp is relatively safe frame trap, and good for punishing in 3-4 frame windows (Haitani uses it often). Cr.Mk is the go-to off counter hit jabs when the jabs push them out of range of your 5 frame attacks. Always follow Cr.Mk (-8) with Lk.Stomp(4).
· Cr.Mp into Lp.DG is an excellent option select that works well for counter-poke fishing, but be careful not to do it so close that they can block the Cr.Mp.
o Even high ranked Necalli’s overestimate their range and wiff what should be easy punishes. Because of your stubby limbs it’s a good general rule to use Cr.Mp>DG option select as your default punisher when in doubt. This way, if it turns out that you’re out of range and your Cr.Mp wiffs, you can block without committing to the DG. The option select knocks down, has (relatively) good range, and comes out in 5 frames.
Mix-up options:
· Ambiguous cross-up from Fj.Mk followed by BnB or Command grab. It’s a grab mix-up and also a cross-up mix-up! (: Your Cmd.Grab is likely to connect if they’re conditioned to block after blocking a jump-in. Your cmd.grab has a whopping 8-frame startup, and the blockstun helps close that gap.
· Overhead Hp and >lk.stomp both put you in desired range for a nice High/low mixup.

Vs. Ryu
Ryu’s blockstrings are to be respected, as pressing a button and getting counter hit can Hurt. Don’t be too aggressive if he has meter for EX.Dp, instead, get comfortable with ground pound zoning until you bait out a tatsu or ill-timed jump, then punish with a knockdown and start your pressure or continue zoning. For much of this fight you may want to just become a defensive wall, slowly moving towards him until you can begin pressure. When zoning, bait him to come in and punishing him when he does.

Anti-footsies game:
· Punish wiffed DPs with CC S.HK, C.HP > DG or ST.HK > target combo.
· His ax kick is -2, but can be canceled into specials. Be cautious about trying to take your turn and getting counter-hit
· Ryu’s standing overhead punch is -6 on block. Punish with St.Mk>Cr.Mp>DG, and Cr.Mp>DG if blocked at max range.
· Ryu’s CR>HP is -8 on block, but has good knockback. Counter with CR.MP>DG at max range, otherwise use St.Mk>Cr.Mp>DG.

Anti-Fireball game:
· Get in by switching between Neutral jumping fireballs and walking forward/blocking.
· If you forward jump over a fireball on reaction he will have time to DP you.
· Pre-emptive DG can safely pass through 1-hit fireballs, but remember you are super unsafe if DG is blocked at anything other than “Just the tip” range.
· Learn the furthest shallow distance from which you can f.jump fireballs and bait a wiffed Dp.
· Non-ex/non-vt Fireballs are -6 on block with good pushback. Punish with>DG if in range.
· Trading Ground Pound with fireball is in your favor because of the V-trigger gain (even health situation).
· Learn to buffer out he motions of a CA, then execute the CA on reaction to go right through mid-screen fireballs.
· His CA is -17 yet not very punishable due to your stubby limbs.

Vs. Ken
Game plan: Get v-trigger, then make use of your Cr.Mp in the footsies game.
His preferred range is just at the tip of his St.Hk. I believe he wins the footsies game against non-vtrigger Necalli, as his St.Hk and Cr.Mk can bully you if done in that gap of space where they are safe for him… BUT when you are in v-trigger the range of your Cr.Mp can close that gap considerably.
So… zone with ground pound and punish with TC until you get V-trigger, turning the match to your advantage. Keep in mind that he’ll rely on tatsu and his run/stepkick to avoid a lot of your ground pound game as he tries to get in.
A lot of Ken’s go-to stuff is punishable:
· Ken’s St.Hk and Cr.Mk are safe on block if done at a distance. Punish with jab>ex.stomp if blocked super close, or Cr.Mp if you can reach (he’ll be able to block it, but you’ll now be at advantage).
· His quick-step is -6 and moves him nice and close. Train your tc on reaction, or 5-frame normal into combos for a less risky commitment.
· Ken’s close range hadoken is -10 on block. Punish with CR.MP(because of range) > combo or target combo. V-trigger is -6.
· Ken’s Ax Kick overhead is punishable on startup with jab ( is possible but not practical on reaction).
· Ken’s target combo (B.Mp>Hp) is -13 on block. Punish with ST.HP >combo. If you are Triggered, punish with Cr.Mp, M.Stomp, Cr.Mp, Slash.
· Ken’s like to cancel M.DP into V-Trigger (run. -5). Punish with Cr.Jabx2 > EX.Stomp, or, any 5-frame punish.
Dealing with his Tatsu:
· Punish Ken’s ground tatsumakis: light is -8 (punish with tc or 5-frame normal>combo), medium is -9 and actually punishable with Hp>combo, BUT hard is -2… Hard tatsu is often used against scrubs as a frame trap or grab set-up. Avoid any guessing games and dodge(dash under or jump) or DP him on reaction.
· His air tatsus should be handled in much the same way as his hard tatsu: dodge (dash under or jump) or dp. If it is blocked high enough, you can squeeze out a jab to stuff whatever comes out next, unless he chooses to ex.dp. Some Kens seem to throw out ex.dp after the air tatsu, which you can block, but that opens you up to a grab. You’re caught in somewhat of a guessing game either way, so I prefer to Nj.Hp>combo or dp on reaction.

Vs. Mika
Use your ST.HK to keep her at bay and look for bad jumpin’s to punish. Corner carry her as much as you can and avoid being outside of your footsie range as that’s her dropkick range.
Against that kind of pressure, you can’t just randomly hit buttons.
· She will H.K (dropkick) to start many combos.
If she follows it with TC: St.Lk>St.Mp, punish with Cr.Mp>Slash.
· Lady Mika (F+HP) is +3 on block with 12 frames of startup. Against this, your best bet to block it, let her have her + frames. If she tries a 2nd Lady Mika after the first you can punish with Jab and crouch MP.
· Slide is -12, you can punish with cr. mp, st.MP, cr/st HP.
· If she slides from range cr.MK into ex stomp is your best punish.
· cr.HP on whiff has 17 frames of recovery, if she whiffs that near you, blast her with crush counters.
· Standing MK at range is -2, you have nothing fast enough to punish it so change your distance.
Counter her BnB:
Mika’s normal mix up is the corner set up which usually involves Passion Press > Irish Whip > Lady Mika > crouch MP (headbutt). If headbutt is unpunished at that point Mika will either hit you with Brimstone (cmd throw) or target combo to confirm into Flying Peach. Neutral jumping in this situation is an option, but her air throw will hurt you. Your command throw is 8 frames, Mika’s are 5… do the math. Use normal throws in this situation if you must throw.

Vs. Karin
Karin has better tools in footsy range. However her defense is lacking when without meter.
There is a range that Karin can bully you the easiest, and that’s at the tip of her Cr.Hk range. If you’re not at point blank range, try to stay just beyond her sweep.
Her sweep is deceptively safe at max range, but if you’re close, and counter with or>Combo.
If she jumps you can still dp her, then Dash/push her into the corner, then start your mixup.
Random dash-ins from Necalli are easily punished by Karin’s and I find it preferable to knock her down with your v-skill first, rather than challenging her superior footsie game in an attempt to fight your way into your preferred range. Also, your preferred range is perfect for her jump-ins, so have your DP ready.
From Karin player: “Poke with Necalli can’t almost do nothing against this normal (his can stuff it, but isn’t that easy),all you need to do is walk forward and back with” This is why you don’t want to play in her footsies range.

Overall Strategy:
· Secure a knockdown > get in her grill> bait the wakeup > punish.
· She has a lot of tools for getting in from across the screen, but preemptive Ground Pounds stuff them pretty consistently. If she’s knocked down at too far a range for you to begin your pressure, just hang back and ground pound to punish her wakeups until she tries to pump to get in.
· As always, have your FJ.Hk and DP ready for when people get frustrated with your zoning.
· Cr.jab will save you from the Ressenha/Tenko/Mujinyaku/Guren mix-ups. That 3-frame normal is amazing, and stops most her bullshit after the first one is blocked.

Other options against her mix-up:
Ressenha, block the first part then crouch so you block the slidekick and stay under the jumpgrab
o If she slidekicks you can throw, cr.HP combo, Target combo, jump and land a deep j.MK
o If she does the jumpgrab, you can throw her, LP or EX cmd Grab, or target combo. She falls out of other stuff here.
The Tenko with uppercut blocked is an easy command throw (LP, EX), target combo or cr.MP into LK Stomp (maybe for CA?)
Mujinyaku(Annoying kicks) is difficult since the start of the LK is identical to the MK, I gamble big time.
o LK version on block is just a target combo or EX Grab
o MK version on block is also not much, cr.MP xx LP Slash or cr.MP > st.HK for a CC Fisher

  •   Also, You can jump out of the MK animation! she has no way of block when you come back down so you can punish huge.

o The HK version you can target combo or EX Grab after blocking or cr.MP > st.HK because CC Fishing is a nice hobby
Guren (annoying punches)
o If she qcfP > P = You target combo, EX Grab or Sweep
o All of the other followups you pretty much only can hit after block. Punish with target combo, LP/EX Grabs or throws.

Vs. Bison
As with many characters with good range pokes, Bison can bully Necalli from just outside of Necalli’s punishing range. Do not try to interrupt his strings or play footsies, instead, take your turn during his approaches. His long-range game leaves a lot to be desired, so use ground pound to build v-gauge until he tries to get in.
Your offence takes place during his dash-ins, jump-ins, and when you are at point-blank range. Bison’s anti-air game is a lot better as of season 2, but still not the best. Most Bison’s will pressure you with safe blockstrings until they’ve pushed you out of range, then they have to get in again… which is when you knock him down and open him up with mixups/grabs/crossups(which kills his back charge)/Nj.Hp>combo. Remember: He can pressure you safely, but he can’t approach you safely.
Dealing with his pressure:

  •   Jabbing is one way to stuff his dash-ins, but what you really want here at a damaging knockdown to start your pressure game. St.Mk>Cr.Mp>DG should be your go-to once you have the timing down. Nj.Hp>combo works too, but he will most likely have time to block.
  •    Double knee presses are relatively safe, and if done at the right distance they can push you back to where your normal combo starters won’t reach. Lk.knee press is the least safe at -4, which can be punished with jab>ex.Stomp at point blank range. Nj if his knee press if it gets predictable, and come down on his wiff with a J.Hp>combo.
  •   Bison’s Target combo (> Down-towards h.punch) is -5 but cannot only be punished consistently from max range. Punish fast with Cr.Mp>combo or TC.

Dealing with Headpress/devils reverse:

  •   Option 1: Most reliable counter is to Jb.Hk.
  •   Option2: Slightly more risky but totally awesome, you can Cr.Mk to make him wiff non-ex headpress(moves your hurt box), followed by Cr.Mp>combo.
  •   Option 3: DP his Headpress/devil’s reverse, EX DP the EX versions.
  •   Option4: Yet one more option is to dash out of the way, if he misses he will be -4.

Other overused attacks that can be punished (depending on range):
· St.Hp is -6, but safe at max range.
· Cr.Hp is -11, but again, safe at certain ranges. Use Cr.Mp>DG to reach him after blocking beyond point-blank range…
· His Cr.Hk is -12, but must be punished with your 5-frame Cr.Mp>combo at max range.
· Psycho blast is safe because of pushback, BUT it counts as a fireball, so you can DG through it. I don’t know why so many just throw it out at random mid-screen.
· Psycho inferno (qcb.P) is super unsafe with the light being – 12, the med being -11, hard being -10, but the ex only -1. Expect to see the ex as an anti-crossup. V-t version is -5, and ex is plus.

VS. Nash
Expect Nash to dash out of punish range after his blockstrings/pokes. Stepkick, backfist, tiny hop spingkick, Cr.Hp (and so on) are all safe at range, so your counterpoking will wiff. Instead, punish sonic booms at long range and punish his dash-ins and those long-range pokes with pre-emptive St.Hk cc or Cr.Mp>slash option select. His anti-air is weak, but watch for air grabs/Cr.Mp. If you get in, mix-up Cmd.grabs / cc / neutral J.Hp. Nearly all of his command normal are totally safe if blocked at max range, even at negative frames, so if you are unsure that you’ll connect, just try jab>EX.stomp or tick-throw to punish.
· His spinning back knuckle (fwd.Hp) is unsafe on block at -13 but with incredible range/pushback. Punish too-close knuckles with Cr.Mp>combo at the earliest frame possible. At mid-close range you will whiff any possible counter attack, so just take it as a reminder that you’re fighting at the wrong range.
· His overhead punch is -6, but must be punished with Cr.Mp>combo if he is a max range.
· His Knee Bazooka (fwd.Lk) is -5, but safer the further away he does it.
· Scythe (flashy kick) is punishable, L (-7), M (-8), H (-15) Ex (-19), but SAFE at max range. Use CA or 5-frame>combo punish any of them normal range, and St.Hp>combo at close range for H and Ex. Also, St.Hp CCs many nashes who love to throw out m.scythe at the start of the round.
· His St.Hp and St.Hk should be punished with a Jab combo, as range will allow.
· His cr.Mk(-4) and Cr.Hk (-12) are both safe at range, but if he’s close enough use jabX2>ex.Stomp punish (for Cr.Mk) and St.Hp>combo or 5-frame punish combo depending on range.
· His sonic booms are L: -7, M: -5, H, -2. None of these are slow enough to punish on reaction with slash, but M and L are unsafe at point-blank. For this reason you must learn to predict sonic booms after a back-dash, trying to hit nash with ground pound or slash at max possible spacing to minimize your own risk of counter attack.
· Tragedy assault (leaping face-grab) is punishable at L: -5, M: -6, H: -8, Ex: -23. Because of this, expect to only see it as a combo ender or to punish your predictable ground pounds.
· There are two reliable ways to deal with his his V-trigger teleport: 1. Jump Forward (it avoids all of them), or 2, jab him out of the teleport as you would with dhalsim.
· His sonic booms are some of the few projectiles that have slow enough start up that you can disc guidance or jump over and punish on reaction… but some prediction is still useful. Look for him to throw them out after he back dashes to long range, then use it to cover his approach.

Vs. Vega (Claw)
It is okay to play defensively at the start, shutting down his attempts as shown below. Once he settles on a ground game, cautiously go on the offensive. With the exception of your predictive CCs, he wins the poke/footsie game, but that can be said of most of your matchups. Be patient when trying to punish.
Once you get a knock down, waste no time getting in that ass. Vega has terrible defense, so mix up high/low pokes and grabs (overhead/ Cr.Mk>L.Stomp/CC/grabs/bnb). Your jump-ins can be punished by EX wall dive or rose, so keep an eye on his gages.

· Vs. Flying Barcelona mix-ups:
o The most consistent option is to meet him in the air. Jump back Hk, just as you would bison. J.Mp>combo if you think he’s going into his attack early to beat your Jb.Hk
o If you are in the corner, dash forward is an alternative to Jb.Hk.

· Vs. Rolling Attack:
o Cr.Mp (option select) > Lp.Slash on reaction before he hits you (there is time depending on range he starts from).
o If too close to read, just block. After block, St.Lp >(frame trap) St. Mp > > stomp.

· Punish Hk.Slide = TC or BnB

· Punish Vega’s target combo (St.Mp,St.Hk) is -13 when you are crouching (Hk wiffs you). Punish the -13 gap with anything.

Vs. Birdie
Birdie wins mid-range and close range, but has bad options for getting in. Play almost full screen until the birdie takes a risk to get in. You can easily react to non ex dolphin dive and get a juicy punish. Anti- air jump ins. It’s a bad idea to jump in on birdie very much unless you’re going to cross up. Build meter/poke with ground pound but Never throw more than one in a row, as he can punish them full screen on start-up/reaction.
Punish all snacks with Groundpound, CA, or Slash on reaction. (slash really does work if fast enough).
Hanging chain (Burdie’s projectile) can be punished with CA even if blocked at max range.
Punish L.Bull Revenger (short-range hopping grab) on reaction with jab, or Cr.Hp, or Overhead (throw invincible during active frames), or Counter combo Cr.Mp, Stomp, Cr.Mp, Slash.
Burdie’s like to do EX bullhorn (charging towards you attack) followed by V-trigger. Punish the -9 frame gap with TC, or St.Mk>combo.
Vs. Laura
For the most part, don’t let her in. Necalli outfootsies her at Cr. Mk / St.Hk range. Her safest ways in are jump and V-Skill, so look to anti-air or jab her out of VSkill. Laura loses at neutral so she’s going to want to stay in as long as possible. Also, learn her frame data and setups. When being mixed up, challenge with 3-frame jab. She’ll either lose or trade. Either way, she’ll have to work her way back in.
Vs. Cammy
Punish Spin Knuckle on reaction before block (counter hit) with>TC.

Vs. Fang
Punish long ranged game with ground-pound and Slash.
If he tries block strings:
Punish mine (Ryobenda -9) with Critical Art at max range, otherwise, Cr.Mp>combo.
All shohoja (hands lunging attach) are -11, -9, and -10 on block… If it is done at max range it MUST be Punished with your 5f-Target Combo while he is retracting before he is out of punish range.

Vs. Gief
Become a wall. N.Jump.HK and St.Hk will stuff most of his approaches. Ground-pound the shit out of him from mid-full range and be ready to DP his frustrated jump-ins.
Crush-Counters, back-dashes, and safe-Jumps are how you win this, Not brawling footsies and getting grabbed.
When you feel like you need to counterpoke, remember that any of your stubby wiffed moves Will get grabbed.
He can grab you easily after blocking or attacking his Armored Punch, so get used to back dashing or Nj.Hp>combo on reaction.
If he just throws out his V-Trigger to pull you in from mid-screen, you can actually j.hp>BnB for big damage. Also, you can punish Punish V-trigger spin (-6) as soon as you stop being pulled in: TC or Cr.Mp>combo

Vs. Guile
For long range:
Be patient. Play his long-range game to your advantage. Your ground pound will either trade or beat him outright if your timing/range is correct, but don’t throw it out crazily or at max range where it will wiff. If he commits to long range game he will slowly put himself into the corner, where you can force him into the perfect spot for your long-range Ground Pound. Unlike the fireball game he is used to, projectiles won’t cancel each other out here – but trade. If you’re preemptive with the ground pound, he’ll get hit outright but you’ll still have time to block.

For short range:
When he gets frustrated not with the Ground Pounds, he’ll try to jump in. Be ready to DP. He may shallow jump just to gain ground on you, which you can L.Slash or air to air Fj.Hk. He has a ton of good anti airs, so jump in sparingly. Ex.flash kick is his only 1st-frame invincible move, so be aware of his meter as you work towards your goal of being in his face using your normal pressure (5-frame normal that lead into combos, command grab, Cr.Mk>stomp, Overhead, J.hp>combo, CCs and your 3-frame jab.

· Punish St.Hp and Cr.Hp with Jab>Ex.stomp.
· Reverse spin kick (upside down kick) is only -2. Jab and take your turn.
· His V-skill sonic boom can be punished with ground pound on reaction.
· His sweep is -12, but at longest range it must be punished by>combo.

Vs. Alex
All slash elbows other than Light are punishable at m-6 / h-7 / ex-10. If you’re unsure which you blocked, punish all with Cr,Mp>slash.
Alex’s Cr.Mp is one of his best pokes, but it’s hurtbox lingers behind the hitbox. When you see him abusing it, show him you’re willing to CC him.
Vs. Juri
Scrubby Juri’s love to backdash then bank charges at the start of the round. Ground-pound far to pre-empt them.
Juries H.Fuharen (double windy kicks) is -11 on block and ends with her close. Punish with St.Hp>combo.
Juri’s M.Fuha overhead cancels in L.Fuha for a mixup. Punish the 6-frame gap after the overhead with TC or St.Mk>combo.

Vs. Urien
Uriens like to throw his dive-knee at the start of the round because it is a (semi)safe way to get to his preferred range. Headbutt and shoulder tackle are also options at this range… Back dash causes every one of these to wiff. Backdash is also a good idea when done on reaction during the match… Punish these wiffs with St.Mp>TC or St.Hp>combo depending on space.
He can bully you because of his range, so try to keep the fight point-blank or far range.
Close range: bait out his ex headbutt reversal, and punish with Nj.Hp>combo. Proceed to get all up in him with your CC/cmd.grab/combo/overhead mixup.
Long range: You can actually zone pretty well in this match if you aren’t too predictable with your ground pound. He may get frustrated and Knee Dive, but backdash or Neutral jump, then punish his wiff with your BnBs.

· His CA is -17 yet not very punishable due to your stubby limbs.

Many thanks for the hard work!