The way plinking benefits you is that, with two inputs that are 1-frame apart, you double your chances of landing a 1-frame link. If there is only 1 input that comes out in training mode, then it does you no better than if you had just pressed the button without attempting to plink; sorry.
What if you plinked half a frame apart but it shows up as a simultaneous input? My thoughts are there may still be a plink even if the game doesn’t show it. I’m guessing it can only show one input per frame. Is there any reason for this not to be the case?
I bring this up because when practicing plinks I was pressing the buttons a little too fast and getting the single input yet the link still worked often. I tried by just pressing one button in the same timing and it worked less. This could be just me, though.
If you hit your link even though it didn’t come out as a:
it just means you hit the 1-frame link without plinking, if that’s what you’re going after.
I think it’s just less trouble to assume that you hit your link correctly without plinking in those situations, and that
is a plink. End of story
Your muscle memory is probably just used to the timing of plinking which is why you succeed with the link more even when you fail the actual plink input.
There’s no such thing as half a frame. Even if you pressed the buttons the real time equivalent of a ‘half frame’ apart, each input will either be read by the game as occurring on X frame or on Y, never on X.5-- its an impossibility.
Well, to be pedantic, the game engine is probably reading inputs faster than it’s updating the screen, ie. above 60fps, but certainly the game will normalise those inputs so that they register for full frames only. I have no idea how the SSF4 engine deals with inputs close to the “edges” of a frame though, but the time window for that is too small to be of any practical significance.