Learn all your character’s cheap stuff and combos, and mixups mixups mixups.
Yes it is kinda like paper/rock/scissors, you can get out of basically everything so you can’t get predictable. (although for some situations rock might do 50% damage and paper only 5%, stuff like that).
But most of all, play against people, and do it often.
Frame Data becomes important later on when you are in need of breaking an offence against you. How many frames you have after you block something can be valuable to know if you want to look for something that can punish or at least put the situation into a more neutral position so that you have even some chance of reversing the situation.
As with your characters of interest, I’m not good with Chun or Ken, but I guess I could give you some advice/opinions for practise that will most likely be trampled by someone else if anything. Mostly all the info you need is in the Character Specific Threads. Well just small things really.
Chun: SA of choice = SA2. Learn to link the c.mk, it’s not hard, but messing up means you’re going to get punished awfully bad. EX Lightning Kicks should be something you should practise so that it comes out right away when you want it, very helpful. Try to stay away from her upside down hurricane kicks and her flip kick. I’ve seen them being mixed in once in awhile, but the player usually gets punished for it because it’s easily blocked or parried. Back + HP is good at building meter and it’s fast enough to punish as well. Forward + HP is what I usually poke with, mostly gets blocked. Pretty fast and mostly safe if you know how to keep your distance. If you’re good at Kara-ing stuff, you should practise her Kara throw, it’s one of her key corner preasure tools.
Ken: SA3 is the best for him. The other 2 aren’t bad, but SA3 is quick to fill the meter and has I believe 3 stocks. Simple stuff, c.lk (x2 if you want) dash grab is used a lot with some success here and there, rarely ever punished just because Ken’s dash is so damn fast. When comboing into the super, the best ways from easiest to hardest is probably (1) c.lk xx SA3 (2) s.mp, s.hp xx SA3 (3) c.lk, c.lp, c.lk xx SA3 (must be close, pretty difficult). Avoid using any special moves like fireballs or uppercuts to go into the super because they severely lower the damage done. Pretty much all I can give advice on, I’m not really a Ken player at all (or Chun Li for that matter).
Dudley: Just practise his combos. Basically you have things you should be doing after seeing how the opponent reacts. Simple combo that does more than 50% stun to everybody is jump in HP, s. RH xx HP Jet Uppercut (Dragonpunch). Painful and powerful, very easy to do. When you get meter you might opt to be more fancy so instead of the HP Uppercut you could go into EX MGB and combo off from there, some combos are character specific so if you’re trying something that you saw and wonder why it doesn’t connect, it might just be that the combo only works on some characters. Pretty much all of Dudley’s moves are good. Forward + RH is a great overhead, can be used as a meaty wake-up and can be linked into your super as well.
Makoto: Just… stop thinking. Be random. The worst thing you could do with her is be predictable and start up patterns. If your opponent is alive too long and notices you have a pattern, you’re doing something wrong. Practise her Karakusa (command grab hcb+k) -> s.HP into your choice of SA2, your dash punch (can be EX as well) or you could psyche out your opponent and make them jump with a canceled dash punch (hold down the punch and press any kick button) then dash forward and karakusa them again. Karakusa, s.HP xx SA2 only works if you’re grabbing them at least in the middle of the screen. You want them to be close to wall your character’s back is facing. If you’re more than a half a screen away, don’t bother because they can block before your super hits. Learn to abuse Karakusa, if you can grab them DO IT. Karakusa is bad enough that it can make some players just get up and leave if you get them enough times with it.
As for Ken I’d like to add a couple of small things just to try and be helpful.
c.mk XX SA3 is a good hit-confirm; it has range and it’s low. Also, you can do c.mk X qcf+hp XX SA3 to hit-confirm but I’d advise to stay away from it.
The c.lk x2/3 is good because you can easily hit-confirm it. If it hits you get - surprise - SA3. This is also good because light attacks don’t pro-rate the following attacks. Whether you should be doing 2 or 3 c.lk’s depends on your opponents character and range.
b+mk is Ken’s best overhead. And if you hit it on a crouching opponent you can link into SA3. So this is a good mix-up for the aforementioned.
And when your down remember you have shoryuken. I’m not telling you to use it all the time (rather, stay away from it) but you should remember that it’s there if you need it. The start-up is all invincible so it beats pretty much anything your opponent might try on you.
Just try to get them in the corner, mix things up on their wake-up and rape them.
There’s other stuff but that comes in to the game later (like his cross-up).
First off, pick a character and learn their normals! Your normals are far more important that your specials and are equally important as your supers. You are going to be playing a lot of poking games, so make sure you get used to them all. 3rd strike is all about mind games and mix-ups, you can not be prediactable because you’re either going to get parried, or punnished. So learning your normals and finding your self some patterns, block strings and mix-ups you’re comfortable with is important.
I can’t comment on the others, but I can on Ken so here it goes.
Ken is probably the most all round character in the game. He has what he needs in whatever position you are in, so learning what you need to use and when you need to use it is key to his game. Ken has a wide veriety of normals, while some are very useful, others are less so. Do not abuse c.hk, it is so punnishable. If blocked it can be countered by another shotos sweep, so that will give you an idea on how dsngerous it is to use. Characters like Chun-Li, Q and Ken who have advancing supers can punnish it so bad if blocked. So can you if you block another shotos sweep so keep that in mind.
Wake-up shoryukens are not a good idea. They can be stuffed with meaties and can be easily baited and parried. If you go crazy with wake-up shoryus, people will aproach you on wake-up, move out of range and catch you on the way down, simply because they knew you where going for it.
Ken has a useless kara-throw so don’t bother with it. One nice kara he has though is his kara-srk. You can land two jab srk’s off a c.mk or s.mp and it does insane damage, so it is pretty useful to learn. Although it isn’t vital to his game, you can be a mean Ken and not use kara-srk’s at all.
Like above, you want to pick SAIII. It has 3 short stocks, builds meter fast, has increadible range and exelent frame advantage. It can punnish a lot of stuff. It can be canceled off of a lot of things and can also be linked off a few things (I made a post on how to do the short, short xx super so I’ll quote that later). The ones you want to use most often are:
c.mk xx shippu…Use this when ever you feel like you need to. It’s best uses are punishing mistakes i.e. whiffed moves and off of a down parry. It is quite predictable if you make it so, so be careful with it. Saying that it is one of his best methods of canceling his super, so make sure you are careful with it. If someone attempts to parry your c.mk, sometimes you can punish them by still canceling with his super, so experiment.
c.lk, c.lk xx shippu (hit confirmable)…This is my favourite method to canceling his super. It has an awsome hit confirm and can be used in almost any close quaters situation.
s.mp, s.hp xx shippu (hit confirmable)…This is also a nice way to cancel and has another awsom hit confirm. Again it’s best uses are in close quaters situations, but can also be done off of his mk cross-up for more damage or simply a way to get it in. Be careful with this. Try not to get into the habbit of using this on their wake-up too often. Your meaty can be predicted and the second hid can be red parried, so yeah be careful.
c.mp xx shippu (hit confirmable)…I like to use this pretty randomly and when they’re not expecting it. It doesn’t have quite the range c.mk does, but it is hit confirmable and can connect from further distances than you might think.
b.mk xx shippu (link only on crouching oponents(hit confirmable))…I find this’ best uses are on their wake-up. It’s not hard to force your oponent to crouch through mix-ups, so when you predict they are going to go low throw out a b.mk and shippu their ass. Alhtough again, use it sparingly as it can be easily parried.
There is a lot more info on Ken so check out his character specific forum and have a look around. You’ll find everything you need and more there.