Plateauing in SSF4AE



I’m sure everyone has gone through this, however I have a hard time accepting it, mainly because offline I usually do exceptionally well at my local scene in Minnesota.

I’m your typical 2000 PP Ken player. I abuse the kara-throw and I like to uppercut. Who wouldn’t like to uppercut, your fist is on fire when you uppercut.

But when these simple tactics don’t work, I of course try something else. I find that Ken almost needs to have his opponent cornered to really apply his pressure game, mid screen is where I’m finding myself lacking.

I have pretty decent reactions, so MP uppercut isn’t a problem most of the time. What I DO have troubles with, is teching tick throws. I hit the crouch tech, and yet around 50% of the time I hear the normal whiff noise and I get thrown.

All of Ken’s punishes, max damage combos, links, mix ups etc I have down, but applying them in game is something I’ve been working on.


I played two Kens today. Both I would argue are terribad. Random mid screen EX tatsus, missing links for days, mashing uppercut like it’s no one business, etc.

I find I can’t really do anything about it. Punishing whiffed uppercuts and AAing is easy enough, but they get that one tick throw and I’m fucked. They don’t do anything ambiguous like jump in fierce. No cross up tatsu, ex or normal, no high-low mix ups, and yet they still manage to get the damage in and I lose.

I also have horrible experiences against Fuertes. What the fuck can Ken do against Fuerte sides pray you guess right? I play Honda, and it’s like the flip switches and they prove how bad they are. But if I play Ken? Well I’m going to try not to get stunned or perfected and I’ll call it good.

I play well against good players, but these random online players make me lose my shit.

Do I just play through it, and wait for some theoretical switch to pop in my head? Or is there some secret that Ken has that I don’t know yet? I’m getting super discouraged, but I love playing this game. Don’t s’pose you guys could offer some advice?


Any good players in minnesota? Do u play against the same people all the time? do u got any vids? But online makes me rage like it was marvel people are dumb and don’t learn and u can’t react to shit online so u could also get hella gimmicked out. But I think its an okay learning tool. With scrubs and most people who don’t know what to do I just get a knock down and do the wiggle kara throw or aa if they jump this way I wouldn’t have to think against scrubby kens bait the step kick and sweep it or aa him, most kens won’t be satisfied w/ just fb’s. U have to treat a scrub like a scrub. And against fuerte I try to be random wit backdash, dp, block left or right if I see him fly, focus or neutral jump I try to gret on him as much as possible too.


I have 3000 bp with a B rank right now homie, believe me I feel you. Between my aggressive playstyle and practicing complex things during ranked matches, my points in no way reflect what I can do to high level players. I actually do better against higher level players. I’ve learned to not really care about the points and look at these matches as practice for offline play.

King D. was right, you have to treat a scrub like a scrub. You know that dp is coming, so just bait it. Scrubs are very easy to mind-f!@#

Are you using the entire kara-arsenal? Also, if you are getting thrown, you probably need to zone more. Nobody should be throwing Ken.

Fuerte is straight up wake-up game. Just zone the piss out of him and bait him into jumping off that wall… he WILL jump.

One last thing - you probably want to take it into training mode and practice crouch-teching, when that blue circle appears signifying impact is the correct time to be inputting the tech(i think… still working on teching myself)


First off, nice avatar :stuck_out_tongue:

Second, yeah. Kara focus, shoryu, fireballl, all the good stuff. I just can’t seem to block or guess right against decent Fuertes. I’m sure if I get a knockdown I can just maul him but they just end up going nuts.

I will hit up training mode and practice all these things too.


Thanks! I think it’s Kenneth’s best look.

Yeah dude, you have throw some kara on it… Every time I play a Ken, doesn’t matter how good they are, I am blown the !@#$ away at how little they utilize his best kara tactics. My recent favorites are - kara dash into kara grab, works great at the beginning of a round. The fullscreen kara tatsu missile = boss. Not the coward copter one, but the one where he goes downward at about a 45 degree angle… trips many many people up and is very easy to combo out of. It is also the most deceptive cross up maneuver IMO when positioned correctly. Get @ me on x-box and I might be able to show you a couple tricks I’ve been working on and vice versa, my gamertag is “not ryu”


So today I played around 20-25 matches, a few with Ryu because he’s like a safety net for me. Easy enough combos, really easy frame traps, and a much better fireball.

I won around half, most of the games I won were against “better” players. At least players with more PP than myself. Nothing feels better than stealing 100 PP off people haha.

There were some games where some people were just mashing jab, and I realized I really don’t know Ken’s frame traps aside from a safe jump to a stuttered low short. Sometimes a meaty crouching MP gets a counter hit, but usually I’m too afraid to try it for fear of their wake up.

I’ve also been trying to get better at hit confirming a cross up tatsu -> kara FP shoryu. I find I waste a lot of my meter going for EX cross up tatsus when normal ones can get the job done just as well.

And I’ll add you Messatsu so we can get some games in, I feel like I’d perform better if it’s in a more relaxed setting. Still trying to teach myself that it’s a game and not to take losses so seriously.


For some reason I find it easier to win with Ken in this version than Ryu. The last time I felt it was easier to win with Ryu was Super. As for frame traps. Kens standing LP has a bigger hitbox than Ryu’s and both cr.LK and cr.LP have a 3 frame start up. Ryu is 4 frame start up on cr.LK 3 on cr.LP

I also had put a fair amount of time on both of them in Super and AE (B rank) except Ken is now closer to B+ and ryu just got to B because 2012


Yeah I need to work on my frame traps as well. I’ve been practicing silly shit so much my fundamentals are kinda lacking.

Yes, hit confirming from the X-up tatsu is good! I just started practicing that the other day with the lk tatsu X-up, because before I would always assume that I was the sneakiest person on the planet, and that all my tatsu X-ups landed, and always SRK afterwards. Needless to say that’s beyond retarded… and now I have gotten quite good at hit confirming the lk tatsu into cr mk>tatsu or cr mk>SRK. I too have been trying to conserve bar for FADC options… those damn ex tatsus are just too fun I tell you!

I look forward to a session .Singe


I feel the same way as you. All I did with Ryu was random srk’s and relied a lot on lp srk > metsu hadouken or ex tatsu > metsu hadouken in the corner and I made it to B in ranked Super. I use Ken now and still do a lot of random crap and I’m probably the exact type of player OP was talking about. Sometimes I feel like I have to turn off my brain and go into random and reaction mode online. Those sort of matches suck even if I win. Doesn’t feel fun. I can lose all day to good players that think and force me to think and I definitely do lose but for some reason it’s fun. When I can get a win it feels pretty damn rewarding too. I feel like switching to Ken forced me to really learn how to play this game because I don’t have my sick metsu hadouken to rely on anymore. I’m probably plateauing too but at a way lower skill level than the OP.


If you want to know how to beat scrubs online for points most of the people here could probably tell you (Backdash, Strong Gimmicks, Safejumps), but you are looking at online play incorrectly. You need to utilize online to get better because wins online mean nothing. Practice hitting and confirming your stuff online, hitting your option selects, learning the ins and outs of matchups, developing a basic understanding of footsies, and trying to play solid overall. BP and PP do not matter, use online to practice, experiment, and to develop the skills necessary to compete in a tournament setting.


harrasing with kara focus and throwing fireballs at footsie range is my game plan with ken and i think its very effective. mid screen ken is all about catching your opponent off guard with a throw or an air tatsu mix up.


Well, after losing 80% of the games I played today, I think I’m just done with AE online. I’m cool not blowing a heart valve every time I lose to a guy doing target combo -> run overhead then grabbing. I block the overhead, cause it’s clearly coming. Then I tech the throw, because it’s clearly coming. Only there’s that second of online lag, so I DON’T block, and I DON’T tech the throw.

I don’t mind getting bodied, I really don’t. I usually don’t mind playing friends and if they beat the pants off me then they earned it. However, when online play makes me want to throw expensive arcade sticks across the room then proceed to buy a gun and shoot myself (judging by how I feel, not literally), it’s just not worth it.

Well played, online warriors, you discouraged me.


.Singe - What kind of monitor are you using? I got one of those EVO monitors, and I’m pretty happy with it. Especially considering I used to play on a projector! I also switched from PS3 to Xbox and that helped with the lag also.

I know what you mean man… I’m kind of torn with the game at the moment as well. Some online people make you just want to kill kittens. Really Guile? Really!? lol… Just gotta get fundamental on their asses. The local scene is kinda whack on the other end of the spectrum. The gatherings have a severe anti-social stench to them(not the only stench). I’m still gonna go to EVO, because I love the game so much.


Bitbna is right. Don’t get angry at losing… focus on perfecting your fundamentals. Watch Daigo’s ryu and MOV’s ken, read air’s blog. Read up on ken’s srk forums and frame data.
Ken can win…he doesn’t suck T-T but i keep losing.
btw some frame traps i use: c.lp c.lp (2 frame trap) - easy, low risk low reward. Use it to sneak in damage. c.lp (3 frame trap) c.hp xxfb - meterless damaging trap in blockstring, fadc after fb for more damage c.lp (1 frame < trap ) delayed hp.srk options: fadc first hit, hit confirm > bnb / fadc U1 - good reward, costs meter c.lp (5 frame trap) - must space far correctly, counterhit into hard knockdown. (6 frame trap) -weak because the is -2 on block, nonetheless can sneak in damage. (trap) hp.srk fadc U1/mp.srk - for people pressing buttons after your
j.hp (trap) (5 frame trap) hit confirm ex tatsu - double traps, the forces stand for ex.tatsu
j.hp (trap) fb fadc ex.tatsu - damaging jump in trap


After a knock down, I sometime stand right in their face and then on wakeup block for 1-3 frames then go into a grab.
If they did a wakeup move, I block it, the grab doesn’t come out (since i’m in block frames) and I proceed to punish their wakeup.
If they don’t do anything, I grab them.
If they wakeup with a grab, it techs.

Against El Fuete, Its hard. I’m no pro, but fireballs if they are over 1/2 screen, apparently you can listen to the sound he makes when he jumps - if he makes no noise then its the grab - in which case do a backjump-HK. In fact backjump-HK is a good option in a lot of cases.


I’ve probably been plateauing for couple months now, sort of got bored of the game. Don’t know what to work on. So on the side, I am working on footsies, reactions (going for more U2 through fireballs etc), execution and matchup. Just random endless and training mode here and there. Anyone got any ideas what the “next step” is?


One thing I’d try working on is pattern recognition and how well can you remember a match. It was in an ATP podcast once where Aris said something like “it isn’t experience unless you can actually remember what happened”.

I think these two things should really help with reading you opponent so it can help you win a bad match-up easier.


ive been playing ken for years and i still dont undesrtand how to frame trap. yes ive read the forums. still i dont understand.

I have A rank on the 2 consoles and PC and still dont use frame traps cuz i dont get it c.lp (3 frame trap) c.hp xxfb - does it mean i have to delay the c HP or just link it on block string?


Just do something that leaves a gap in your offense - when block/hitstun ends, a few frames of nothing, then first active frame of next move.

if that’s low short, low jab, low fierce and it hits, you’d have to wait intentionally wherever you want to place the trap. As far as I understand anyway. The idea is to leave a short period where your opponent can START to do something, but your next move’s active frames start before any of his non-invincible options’ can.

Your example on block, for example:, cr.lp (+0, 3f startup => 3 frame gap)
cr.lp, cr.hp (+2 on block, 5 frames of startup => another 3 frame gap)

#20, cr.lp is normally a chain so there is no gap here.

cr.lp leaves you at +2

cr.hp has 5 frames of start up.

Ideally, you would want to perform the cr.hp as if you were going for the link from the cr.lp. This would leave a 3 frame gap between the end of your opponents block stun and the first active frame of your cr.hp.

If your opponent tries to put out their own non invincible move in this “gap”, there is a high chance you’ll catch them with the cr.hp.

Check out the “Frame Trapping 101” thread here in the Ken forums. You can find a link to it in the 2nd post of the General Discussion Thread.

I can’t think of an easier way to describe it and break it down than I did in that post!!!

Hope this helps,