Severe Balrog problems with Breathless

I recognize there are already plenty of threads on Breathless in elsewhere on SRK. However, the Balrog forums are terribly uninformative and incomplete with regards to many things. That said, there is a dramatic lack of sensible data as to how Rog can counter Breathless without being *extremely *lucky.

I already know of many ways Rog can counter it, but Abel is **always **at advantage unless Rog has charge. Rog is at risk to do anything at medium range because he can’t jump over him or away from him if he delays it. It is also too fast at certain ranges to reactively dodge. This pretty much forces the Rog player to shut down his offense entirely so he can maintain charge at the constant, massive threat of U2.

Even upon knock down, it is absurdly risky, much more so than any other character (including Zangief), to attempt continued pressure. The only things I’m aware Rog can do on Abel’s wakeup are…

-do a meaty TAP (can be countered by EX TT)
-do a meaty Dash Low Smash (can be countered by EX TT)
-do a meaty Dash Swing Blow (can be countered by EX TT)
-wait, and do an EX headbutt at point blank range after flash if you don’t have U1 (if you don’t do EX headbutt extremely close, you will end up back in front of Abel, because his hitbox changes, and get hit)
-wait, and do U1 after flash (the absolute best option, but only if you are fortunate enough to have charge)

All of those are very poor options as they can be countered on reaction or stop match momentum entirely. With the level of risk there is to being hit, and the poor counter/bait options available on Abel’s wake-up (especially if you don’t have U1), it is more viable to never pressure Abel once you knock him down, giving him a bizarre match advantage. Breathless, as it is on Rog, counters every single wakeup pressure option at the same time.

This compounded with Abel’s natural mixup options, and U2 eliminating your ability to jump at all from nearly any viable range, makes the match have an extreme swing in his favor. especially considering you can’t even safe jump him once he has it. edit: incorrect info

**EDIT: BREATHLESS CAN BE SAFE JUMPED / JAN 2nd, 2011 **(thanks to HAV for promoting the idea)
For a safe jump after forward throw.
Jump in using FP. Use c.MK after the throw to time the jump-in. RH is more difficult to time a proper safe jump.
For a safe jump after backward throw.
Jump in using RH. Use c.jab after the throw to time the jump-in. If you use FP, it will whiff, causing Breathless to hit you quicker than usual.
The ability to safe jump does not eliminate the threat, but it helps to bait it. Be wary of using a safe jump on Abel as he can still EX TT you.

-Despite what you would expect you cannot do meaty jab (have it absorbed into armor) and special cancel into EX headbutt. You get grabbed before you can even cancel, truly absurd. edit: incorrect info
-I think you can jump in on Abel, have him activate, and then do EX headbutt immediately once you land (works because of the additional time gained in ultra flash) causing him to whiff it. However, this may be purely because the Abel player mistimes the ultra. edit: has been disapproved, does not work
-I am also not certain if you can jump and then mash back dash crazily and escape. It has worked before, but it may be another case of the Abel player mistiming his ultra. edit: has been disapproved, does not work
-*AMAZINGLY *Balrog’s U2 does NOT WORK after the flash on Breathless. You can almost see him whiff the throw for a moment before Abel snatches him out of it.

What legitimate options does Balrog have to counter U2 without retaining an absurd risk? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Other players feel free to post your character concerns in here as well, if your particular character thread does not have sufficient data.

To backup what HAV said initially, this thread is horribly riddled with wrong information. Im going to clear some things up…

  1. you CANNOT cancel landing frames into ultra, super, or EX headbutt if Breathless was properly timed. If you were able to jump away, ultra, super or EX headbutt as you were landing, you did so during the 7 START-UP frames of breathless (it doesn’t grab until the 8th frame). If Abel properly times Breathless on your jump, there is NOTHING you can do. If you were able to “cancel” landing frames then everyone would just hold up and spam empty jumps on Abel with U2… You need to accept that you jumped wrong and then work other ways to attack other than jumping.

  2. you CAN cancel low jab (or low short, or low strong) into super or headbutt as long as you cancel Immediately after the ultra freeze. If you try to cancel before the freeze it will not work. Meaty low strong gives you more frames to cancel and does more damage so it’s the better option for that situation.

  3. you never have to waste meter with EX headbutt vs Breathless. Breathless is a throw and all headbutts are unthrowable. Fierce headbutt is the better option because it only does 10 less points of damage, same stun, has more range, and builds meter.

  4. there is no such thing as “reversal timing” to make a headbutt (or any other non-armor break move in the game) break armor. The only way a non-armor break move can break armor is if it is truly a reversal (the words reversal will pop up on the screen)
    Requirements for a reversal:

A) performing the move as you are waking up from knockdown state
B) performing the move as you are landing after being reset in the air
C) performing the move as you are coming out of Hitstun or blockstun.

  1. you cannot do dirty bull on breathless because it is unthrowable.

  2. Nick T. : charge times are not “full 2 or 3 seconds”. charge time for all of rogs special moves except TAP is [[ 55 frames ]] which is slightly under one second.

It amazes how little people know of this game’s engine and just other things that have been the same since street fighter 2…

personally… i don’t have alot of trouble with this ultra i usually bait it out with diagonal punch or overhead on abels wakeup cuz they tend to have an itchy trigger finger for it on wakeup if u dash punch but they get beat out… otherwise i ultra or jump…or backdash…or tap…this honestly isn’t a very good ultra soulless is better imo being that u can combo into it

Hahaha yeah right. Breathless owns Balrog.

Gammon, canceling the jab into headbutt after the flash is possible. You are mistiming it.

Also, try using fierce headbutt if you want to cross over.

Try walking back a pixel and do jump back fierce on the way down. Breathless’ startup makes it so you can walk back a tiny bit before it reaches you and the hitbox of jump fierce makes it difficult for Abel to reach him.

Noel uses the jump back fierce trick multiple times. IIRC, PR balrog told him about it

Hope this helps your testing.

if ur close enough to jab headbutt your close enough to jump over him… and u can always backdash i don’t really see how this ultra owns you unless you do something stupidly punishable

Yo abel is cheap. People say if you have no charge and are mid range jump back or dash back.

As Gief i have to mash on backdash. I’ve done this with Rog as well but Abel players have caught on and know the timing to punish it. So it does become a guessing game. I’ve has some success with backdash - jump back. Theory fighter I never got a chance to try this but couldn’t we charge a TAP during ultra flash? He’d have to hold expecting a jump or dash of course adding to the guessing game.

You know, I was looking forward for AE “fixing” its random nature which supposedly has…but oil for blood. All my characters got nerfed in the process including Rog. No more safe HBs through fireballs, dumb.

TAP does not work at all vs breathless. start up is too visible. if you think breathless isn’t that good, you’re not playing abels who know how to use it.

@kenshin220 a meaty jab allows balrog another option other than just waiting for breathless. if he blocks you get pressure, if he sees a twitch and activates breathless, you can headbutt. Some abels actually activate breathless at point blank on purpose to get u to jump so they can cancel and have a better position. Also, backdash is something that is stupidly punishable.

i don’t usually backdash anyway i usually just super or ultra unless im point blank then i just jump over then neutral jump fierce of headbutt otherwise its easy for me to stop abels ultra i usually bait it throw a couple dash straight then diagonal punch usually they will activate it right there im just saying i have played and beat some REALLY good abels multiple times and ultra 2 is the least of my concern i honestly prefer they have it cuz i rarely if ever get hit with it u just adjust when he has it : / i just don’t have much trouble with abels in general. i always feel like the match is in my favor. im sry if i can’t fathom why ultra 2 for abel is so tricky. like usually when i play the same abel multiple times in a row they will usually switch to ultra 1 if they started with ultra 2 on me. i just feel balrog has too many ways to counter it for it to be a problem

You need to try playing against an abel from NJ.

Not always… Abel’s hitbox flattens out sometimes forcing you back in front of him if you try and jump over him at otherwise acceptable ranges.

TAP is massively punishable on reaction by even a mediocre player. As well as overhead and more skilled players can react to dash low smash.

If you are winning the match you wont always have ultra. At that point all it takes is for Abel to guess right once and then he’s winning… SF4 is so dumb sometimes. And honestly it doesn’t take a “good” Abel to hit you with U2. Breathless is good and there are very few reliable counters to eliminate getting hit by it even in contrast to a 720 or DP FADC ultra. All they gotta do is guess, and it’s usually in their favor for a free 45%.

THX for the jump back FP hitbox trick Dynicksty, that may in fact work. Especially if Noel can do it, LOL.


Check about 15 secs of this vid. From close range, jab xxheadbutt is probably best option.

Hu very apparently delayed the ultra, if he released it he woulda been toast 'cuz that jab looked like it was post ultra flash, may be wrong. But meaty jab to ex headbutt supposedly works, tho I haven’t seen that.

This is a good thread, so when I come across Gammon I’ll know what tricks he is up to and counter him. :wink: You can’t grab Abel out of Breathless as it is throw invincible as well (I believe), just like his regular Tornado Throw. Some Giefsters have a habit of activating their 360 ultra as they land when they see Breathless has been activated, so I’ll hold on to the charge and they’ll whiff the ultra grab, same with many command grab characters out there when they attempt the grab on Breathless.

The jump back fierce tactic is good, though backdash is still very effective against Abel’s Breathless when done right. Happy Gaming.

TAP isnt throw invincible fyi.

Well I very rarely encounter and Abel with Breathless (thank god) but came across one the other (he was a shit talker too, which made it worse.) He did a breathless once and I was able to react with my own ultra, seeing as he delayed it. But when an Abel does it and releases it straight away it is almost impossible to react to? I tried to do my super but it didn’t come out quick enough (probably because I panicked and I mashed :frowning: ). If I would have jumped forward or back I would have been grabbed.

How many Abel’s do you guys counter with Breathless? I very rarely come across an Abel and when I do he usually uses U1 because he can combo into it off a c.hp.

Continuously mash on back dash. for me that’s what works best since the u2 stops at where you were when he/she released it

Meaty cr. jab, if they activate it, cancel your cr. jab into headbutt. Otherwise, jump back fierce or jump over him (best option)

I use two techniques against Abel’s U2:

1st: Offense

I stay as close to him as possible and put pressure using well timed jabs and hit confirm into combo and if he activates U2, I just jump over him. That is the most risky way though.

2nd: Defense, I stay at about half a screen away from him and try to bait out the U2. Playing “footsies” and whiffing jabs till he activates it, and then I jump back roundhouse then may knockdown or U1 if available. Maybe this only works on bad Abels though since good ones might not activate it from that distance without knowing it will connect.

2nd way is safest, today I did the jump back roundhouse twice in a match against a Abel player and the next match he switched to U1 hahaha.

yea you do need help with breathless