Some tips for learning how to play footsies in SSF4?


I jump way too much and have been grounding myself to try and teach myself to stay there, I’m familiar with the concept of footsies, and have read the footsies handbook but i still seem to be bad at it.

I feel like whenever i stick out a normal it’s at the wrong time and i always get counter hit. I rarely am able to hit and when i do i rarely link into a SP attack on reaction so alot of my hits are just 3 weak kicks or something to that nature.

Just wondering if anyone had a similiar problem or had advice or wanted to hop into a game later tonight and school me on a few things.

GT: Deadlight 7


I’m not a very good player myself either but I think footsies is mostly about experience, patience and good reactions. Also some players will not play footsies with you, and you’ll need to adapt to that. And some characters have little to no tools for footsies, so don’t bother with them :stuck_out_tongue:

For example with Ryu buffered into hadouken is your basic tool. If it hits, you can eg. FADC sweep for a knockdown. If it gets blocked, you’re usually safe. Also it’s actually pretty easy to hitconfirm into super (I do it it like qcf, d+mk, qcf, hit punch when I see/hear it hit.), and really fun when you manage to pull it off in a match. :slight_smile:

Of course, if all you’re doing is, then you’ll opponent will most likely adapt to it. Keep in mind that you have more than one normal move.

Edit: Forgot to mention: You need to have the guts to stick out moves and walk forward. You won’t be able to do anything if you’re afraid of getting hit, so if that’s your problem, just try to play more boldly. Of course, there’s a fine line between bold play and recklessness; That’s where experience comes in.


I’d be glad to offer you guys some intermediate help, but footsies, despite the cute nickname, are actually quite complicated. They’re different for every matchup, not just the moves, but the distance at which the moves are used. There’s no single instruction manual that will work for every character. So the more you can share about your play experiences, the more the community can help (video is worth a thousand words, too!).


what character do you play?..



it’s probably that you lack practice. here’s a helpful tip tho… try using your normals, whatever they are, at their maximum range.


Nobody ever says who they play as. Idea: Do that!!!
Because a lot of footsies deal with normal moves. Each character has different ones, with different uses. To tell you how to use them in mind-games, we need to know which character-and therefore which set of normals-you use.


Actually, a lot of footsies involve using normals OUTSIDE their maximum range.


that sounds like you’re either baiting a particular move or you’re trying to make them mess up. either way what we’ve both said are just one component of footsies, he could learn your part himself


yeah that’s what i do with Ken’s stepkick and sweep. catch them when you think they will move forward. so you throw out the move just outside it’s maximum range if you predict they will move forward into it.


your bible of footsies right here, check it out!


I couldn’t have said this better myself. Everything you need to know is there. It may seem impossible at first but its not. Its about patience and practice.


Oh, and don’t be afraid to use training mode! Just record the dummy to do whatever move it is you’re looking to bait/punish/counter and play around with your moves at different distances.


Thanks for the input guys, i’ll get some matches together and upload them over the next couple days and post them in here.

#14 - Commodities in Fighting Games

pay special attention to the part about space behind you as a commodity. this can help you figure out some situations in footsies. keep in mind fireballs add in an extra variable to the situation so you cannot always play normal battle footsies, but when you do… think of that article

#15 - Commodities in Fighting Games

pay special attention to the part about space behind you as a commodity, the disadvantages of walking forward (important to take advantage of this in footsies), and the disadvantages of walking backward. this can help you figure out some situations in footsies. keep in mind fireballs add in an extra variable to the situation so you cannot always play normal battle footsies, but when you do… think of that article


You don’t have to do it on reaction!

(i’ll use ryu as an example)

c. mk is arguably the best footsie for ryu. whenever you throw out, quicky do a hadouken command right after. You should complete the hadouken command BEFORE the animation for c. mk ends. If executed correctly, the following will happen:

If missed, nothing else will happen. Since you completed the hadouken command before the animation ended, no fireball will come out.

If hits, your fireball will come out right after, and extra damage will be done! The game engine reads your input as a cancel when hits something!

This works for all characters and their special moves. If you want to know more, look up option selects.


You can even option select moves that are unsafe on block if you’re poking. With Sakura it’s popular to do xx shooken. Do it at a range where if they just crouchblock your whiffs and no shooken comes out. But if they poked with something and you hit them out of it with you get the uppercut and get good damage and a knockdown.

And yeah, you often do use moves outside their maximum range to hit your opponent out of their moves. Often people will throw out moves just to make you respect their space so you just don’t walk up and throw them. The counter to this is to hit them out of those moves as they whiff. Then when they stop doing their defensive move you can walk in and get them to block pokes. After that stage if they just block you can throw them.


These quotes are good shit right here. If you’ve read the handbook, then you probably already know what footsies are, so here is my advice to you after reading the footsies handbook: Read it again, but particularly on one or two parts you have trouble with. Pokes? Watch some videos and look at how higher level players use pokes to control space and set up offense. These pokes are NOT RANDOM.

Really what I’ll say about footsies is it has alot to do with reading your opponents actions and reacting to it. How do you train this? Experience, but even in training mode.

Try this: Every 5 matches you play, try to commit one match where you play COMPLETELY DEFENSIVE, and do not use any special moves outside of punishing your opponents’ whiffed attempts. Use all normals and try to win a game without the use of DPs or throws (unless teching) and offense in general. Play defensive (control space with pokes) and see how well you learn to use the pokes that your characters have in their arsenal.