hey guys I just posted this on a different forum (what used to be streetfighter4forums.com after that one died) so I won’t post the link here it is just to explain why i start out the way i do below here.
I have put a beginners guide together and i would like to know everybodies oppinion on this so let me know
so i was thinking: where do we (or should we) stand out compared to other forums and i think we all know the answer is this: we are a mixture of high level and low level players with everything in between and concentrated on the ‘casual’ gamer.
3 years ago i got into sf4 and i didnt know SHIT about competitive gaming and i needed to teach myself everything about street fighter. if i had KNOWN back then what i know right now i would have been sooo much better in much shorter period of time. a few months ago i persuaded my brother to start playing sf and in just a few months he has become a pretty good player because I told him do this, dont do that in the first weeks and even though he is stuborn in some things like when i said: DON’T mash and DON’T do random ultras (he still does that regularly, giving a irritated excuse saying he doesnt have the time to learn combo’s) but all in all he has become realy good in just a few weeks.
now we all know there are a lot of startegy guides on the internet (like the crosscounter guide and sirlin’s pro-guide) but the point to those guides is in my oppinion: they are all directed to players from medium to high level skill
none of them is directed to beginners. and this is where I (and hopefuly WE! ) kick in. so lets start a beginners guide to street fighter for people who litteraly just bought the game to playes that are reaching mediocre level.
before I start I will say that if i needed examples I used Ken as an example both because he is my personal main and I know him best as well as the fact that Ken is used by many people who start out using this game. another reason is that many of Ken’s examples can be applied to many other chars.
ok so you bought the game, you KNOW this game offers a lot to learn even though at this point you don’t even begin to realise how much that realy is, so where do you begin? what do you do?
well let me start off by giving you a little insight on what street fighter is basicly about. many people have compared Street Fighter a lot with either poker or chess. I like to see Street Fighter as a fusion of those two more than actually fighting. how and why this is, is something you will graduadly understand more and more while reading this guide and simply playing street fighter. I’ll try to give a random description up front and you will see the examples as you’re reading through this guide (or during actual gameplay)
why poker?: street fighter consists of an collection of different options at any given time or situating in the game that hold different reward-risk x fail/succes% ratio’s. at any given time or situation you want to select the most succesful option and most often this is the option with the most optimistic reward-risk x fail/succes% ratio. or in simpler terms you mostly want to use the move that has the highest chance of succes with the most damage possible against the lowest risk. that way you gamble with the most chance of comming out on top.
why chess?: so the poker analogy is pretty straightforward and concrete, the chess analogy is a lot more abstract and harder to grasp. so you have the different options and possibilities NOW however you need to be able to move your pieces (consisting of your character, your opponents character, the stage, your mindset and your opponents mindset) in such way that you are in the very best position of actually putting your best “poker options” to use that you have at your disposal while forcing your opponent to be limited to his lesser “poker options”. this is also where the so called “mind-games” come in as you need to work your opponents mind in such way that you gain the upper hand. the one person that has the combination of all this down the very best is the player we all know: Daigo. if you’re a fanboy or not you must give respect to the way Daigo puts all these cogs of the game to turn so fluidly, in sync and so completely.
I know at this moment all this seems very complex and confusing but along the way you will start to learn and understand every single word I said above.
First off you need to understand the very basic terms of the game. I would have explained it to you if it weren’t for eventhubs.com where it is explained very good already:
so lets get to the rest! first off let me start with what you SHOULDN’T do and why not.
Mash buttons or stick inputs. realy, don’t do this. i know its tempting because you want to get that special move to come out and you just want to get over and play the fucking game already.
so why shouldn’t you do this:
well first and most importantly: once you learn it its realy difficult to UNlearn it. believe me…its REEAAAAALY difficult to unlearn it.
second: even though mashing CAN sometimes give you victory (when playing other low skilled players) think about how that victory came to be: did you get this victory because you played so well? or was it just because you got lucky a couple of times? i know the answer but you just answer it for yourself and then ask yourself: is that how I want to win?
third: eventually when you learn the game you want your hands to throw out a specific move at any given moment when you feel it fit to do so. mashing moves is very counter-productive in that respect.
fourth: mashing moves makes it impossible to do combo’s and eventually: thats one of the things you want to do right?
fifth: mashing moves makes you throw out a lot of unsafe things. when on a low level that isnt much of a problem but when you’re advancing in the game it will become a huge problem
there are moments when mashing is not such a bad thing to do but you will only know when that is once you are above average level at this game. so just DONT do it
jump in on your opponent. i specificly say jump IN because jumping in general can be useful. jumping in also is very tempting because at first it can be very scary to get in on your opponent in a different way plus it seems a pretty good way to get a combo starting.
so why shouldnt you do it?
ok besides “because it makes you look stupid”
1st: you will prevent yourself from finding other (and better) ways into your opponents face and thus growing in the game
2nd: you get predictable giving your opponent a very easy way to addapt to you
3rd: your opponent can anti air you for free damage (and possible follow up with ultra)
lastly: you lose control of your character giving all options to your opponent. well all but 1: that is you can still press an attack button but there it ends. now you: yeah so why should i care if i lose control of my character for just a second? well when you start out with the game there doesnt seem to be much to care about indeed but when you advance in the game you will see that everything you want to do will be muted once you jump. thats poking, playing footsies, zoning, etc. also if you do jump and your opponent doesnt you will not only take all those things away from yourself but you will give your opponent the advantage because he DOES still have those options! and i’m not even talking about the fact that he can simply anti-air you and land a devastating combo.
just like mashing: there will be moments when jumping in will be a viable strategy but you will start seeing those moments when you advance in the game so for now: DONT!
random ultra: this too is very tempting because if you land it, you will do massive damage and possibly turn the game around or even win it.
so why shouldnt you do it?
ok I’m a bit in dubio here because doing random ultra’s MIGHT help develop your yomi. but only that hypothesis does in no way beat all the disadvantages i’m gonna state below.
1st: ok lets say you are almost dead, your opponents is at 50% life and you decide to throw out an ultra thinking: well maybe he will walk into it. and pang, he had already thrown out a move so yes he get’s hit by the ultra and you kill him: wooopiiee you won!!! but why did you win? because you were the better player? well technicly you WERE the better player because you beat him and he was too stupid to not expect the random ultra. you did it you beat him fair and square and he has NOTHING to complain about. however you must realise that you played a gambling game here. you won because you guessed a gamble with a very low winning percentage and you guessed right. did you learn anything from it (besides MAYBE devolop some yomi)? just like with mashing i’ll let you answer this one yourself.
2nd: just like i said above with a random ultra you take a gamble with a very low win percentage. the reward for winning is pretty high (up to around 50% damage) however the punishment for losing is at LEAST just as high if not even higher. because your opponent can for example land his own ultra with a 100% winning chance doing the 50% damage himself or he can do another devastating combo, gaining meter, knocking you down and putting you in the corner leaving you at a very big disadvantage.
using stand-alone(not-during-combo) special moves: this is very tempting because special moves seem to have a lot of advantages compared to normal moves.
well maybe I shouldnt say stand-alone special moves but rather say: dont use special moves without good reason. (because they look cool is NOT a good reason :p) i corrected myself here because many (especially charge) characters have many special moves that are rather safe when used correctly, even when they are not done during a combo.
so why shouldnt you do it?
1st and formost: because many specialy moves are unsafe on block meaning that if your opponent blocks your special move he can then punish you with a very damaging combo himself. to put it in the poker terms: lets say I want to throw out Ken’s heavyshoryuken, is personally estimate the chance of actually hitting your opponent pretty high: about 50% chance since it beats almost everything except blocking and if I land it i do 140 damage! pretty good huh? but wait if i miss my opponent can punish me with a basic but strong combo of about 200 damage or even do his ultra for 500 damage! so if i do a random hp.srk I risk 200-500 damage versus 140 damage reward in a 50/50 gamble…not so smart you see. it MIGHT work! it might even work for a round long giving you a win. but the chance that that happens is REALY small.
2nd: you restrict yourself from learning the very basic structure of this game. street fighter is not built on ultra moves, its not about super moves, its not even about special moves. those are all just very impressive structures that are built on a foundation of normal moves. THAT is what this game is built on! and just like in real life, if you built a skyscraper on a marshy ground, your skyscraper will crumble. however if you build it on solid rock…then your skyscraper will stand tall and proud. in short you must understand that you need to learn normal moves before you can learn when and how to use special moves.