Ss4: need advanced advice for taking my game to the next level

1st time poster, this site is great and I plan on frequenting it!

just wanted to throw out where I am as a player, in hopes that some more advanced people could point me in the right direction on how I can improve, any non-snarky advice is appreciated.

I got my mains (sagat, chun li, vega) all up to C, and I’m sad to say I’ve been losing considerably more than I’ve been winning, and want to figure out how to get my game to the next level, and I’d love to know any of your thoughts on any breakthru strategies/gameplay philosophies you might have successfully implemented.

here’s some random thoughts and questions:

  • I’ve realized more and more that good matches are more like chess. the key decision for success is getting someone to commit to an attack you can successfully counter, and/or committing to an attack that will not be countered. when i go full out offense, I find 99% of the time the guy is just blocking and counter attacking. being patient, and feeling out what kind of player you are playing is key.

  • that being said, if your opponent is going balls out offense, sit back and let him counter. once he unsuccessfully attempts his go to lead in, and his confidence is shattered, mix it up.

those are a few thoughts I had, now onto the questions:

  • i have trouble getting inside on turtle char (i.e. guile) and keep-away characters (got owned by a good dhaslim last night his jumping fierce p annhilated me). thoughts on how to deal with them?

  • i still havent implemented much focus attacks/focus attack canceling in my game. i feel like fac is more used for extending big combos. I have a tough time effectively using focus attacks, advice for how to effectively use them?

  • sometimes i feel like I’m still an extension of my snes days, relying on uppercuts for anti-airs, fireballs, and sticking to jumping fierce/roundhouses. this may sound dumb, how do you most effectively use your light and medium attacks in your gameplan?

answer my questions, share your thoughts, or add your own questions.

Hello there welcome.

First thing you need to realize is that your Ranked points/grade online mean nothing as a barometer of how good you or your opponent are at this game checkout the regional match making forums here to see if you can find players in your area to play with offline or online. If online is your only choice then by all means go after it but at least use that time playing people that have some idea of what they are doing.

That being said you have a pretty good idea of how intermediate level+ play is. It’s more of a bait and punish game rather than who can do flashy combo x during the game.

FADC can be used to either create a combo not possible without it such as Ryu’s famous DP FADC ultra etc etc. It can also be used to make an otherwise unsafe option completely safe. Ryu as an example again. Where mashing DP during someone’s blockstring is quite risky because if you get baited you will eat big damage. Doing this with 2 meters + ultra is quite safe and tilts the risk to reward ratio in your favor because if they block you FADC and you are safe, if you hit it leads to a U1 combo.

I’d say pick one or two of those three and focus more attention onto them, early on it’s really about picking up of tricks and techniques with one character at a time, which is going to happen a LOT slower when you’re spreading yourself around so much.
By devoting more time to one character, you firstly learn more about them and their matchups with other characters, and learn more about the fundamentals of the games, which you can then move over to other characters if you so wish.

It’s good to think about what time of player you’re against, but think more about what he’s actually doing (ie, what part of your game he’s exploiting to gain damage on you) and not grouping him into a category and trying to play according to that.

**Pay attention to exactly where you’re taking damage. Are you using unsafe pokes? Being baited into silly things? Does the pressure he’s applying to you have you thinking so hard about what to do you’re not actually doing anything against him? Is he mixing you up on wake-up too much?

To really damage a person’s confidence, you have to be prepared to punish, and punish well, every single mistake an opponent makes. This means you’ll have to learn some high damage go to combos of your own.**

**Like I mentioned earlier, pay close attention to where you’re taking damage from. If you’re getting hit by flash kicks every time you jump in on Guile, work on getting in on the ground. Throws and overheads (move that is used on the gound but can’t be blocked low) are always useful against charge characters. Focus cancelling through sonic booms and other moves is also very useful, so improve on that. But, if you go to your character specific forums, there’ll be match-up threads there that will have very useful information on all of your bad matchups:


**Focus attacks are very useful for baiting and moving through fireballs, as well as building ultra metre without taking actual damage, learning to use focus attacks alone with improve your game a heck of a lot.
**As for Focus Attack Dash Cancels, they’re extremely useful when you have the super metre available for them, not only for combo purposes, but because you can cancel what was a previously very unsafe move (Tiger Uppercut etc) and make it completely safe by using a back dash after cancelling it. When you’re being heavily pressured on your wake up, or in the corner, or during a block-string, you can FADC and 1) safely end the pressure and reset the pace of the game, 2) have a chance at doing some damage in the process… If you do anything with your next few days, look up some tutorials for this and start playing around with it.

Light attacks are generally for use in combos for hit-confirming purposes, and medium attacks are often more useful in pokes and footsies but can still be used during combos.

I know I probably sound like a patronising ass in this btw, but that’s the way it came out; hope a little of this helps!

nah i appreciate the input, thats why i came here, i wanted to get better and learn from folks who have been around the block.

sf2 turbo was the first game i got with my snes, but i didnt have any friends, and got stuck playing against the computer non-stop. the stuff i learned about fireball zoning, and basic specials input stuck with me, I didn’t have any flesh and blood people to play with as a middle schooler.

i got ssf4 on a hunch on my birthday, after loving competitive gaming but being bored to tears with COD: MW2, and fell in love with SSF4, havent touched many other games since.

thanks for the advice, I’d heard a lot about via seth killian when he’d show up on the gamesradar podcast, looks like i went to the right place!

any advice on the etiquette of finding players in my area?

I went to the forums, and looked at my region (the dc/metro area, specifically northern VA), found the post, which seemed to be some random rants, and just said hey, looking for some people to play with.

any other ways to do it? sorry if this sounds elementary question, but i realize that is a well established community, and i want to figure out the ins and outs.

They hold weekly ranbats on wednesday nights at Xanadu games. If you can go you’ll meet some people. Most are very nice and exchange numbers set up console get togethers and the like.