So recently I’ve been trying to focus on execution outside of combos, and I’ve realized that I don’t really do much with block strings. I main Jin/Hwoarang and usually when the opponent’s blocking I try to go for frame traps. I know there’s more to blockstrings than frame traps but the problem is I don’t know what those things are.
So what exactly do you look for in a block string? Is it all just frame traps and hit confirms or is there something I’m missing? And you have multiple strings with different purposes?
When you’re doing blockstrings, you want to try to bait the opponent into doing something that will cause them to get hit. One thing you can do is mix up between doing a frame trap with a very small gap and leaving a bigger gap where the opponent could potentially mash out. If you keep making small gaps where your opponent can’t mash, you can condition them to respect it and then open them up with an overhead or throw. If you keep making bigger gaps and restarting your pressure (many characters in SFxT use super charge cancels for this), the opponent could get baited into pressing a button and getting hit when you switch to tight frame traps. You can also just stop and block to bait out DP’s and backdashes. Alpha counters can be more difficult to bait, but you can do things like use lots of light attacks or throws to discourage them.
the purpose of a block string is to push an opponent away. once you realize your combo is being blocked, you do a block string that will not end up in you being hit, or in a dangerous spacing situation.
for example, lets say you start your main combo with jab (this is general sf stuff here, as I dont know anything about sfxt) you can just jab a few more times and be safe if the opponent is blocking, if you noticed it hit, you can try something more damaging from that jab
sometimes people use frametraps in their block strings to bait moves to open people up, other times they can go for tick throws
A block string is a series of attacks where your opponent can only block. If they try to press a button, or mash a reversal, it won’t come out, because the game’s engine or frame data won’t allow them. You do block strings to primarily push your opponent away as well as testing to see how they react under those circumstances. Do they just simply block? Mash the ever-living shit out of crouch-tech? Try to reversal? It goes a lot into being able to observe your opponent’s tendencies.
I differentiate that from attack strings. Attack strings is a series of attacks designed to open up your opponent and land damage. They’re primarily done after a jump attack, or a cross-up, or any situation where you’re next to an opponent and have frame advantage. They could be anything from tick throws, to frame traps, to overhead setups, or reset situations, etc etc. They’re riskier than block strings, since you’re able to be reversed, or counterhit, or thrown, or tech throw (which is a win for the guy who’s on disadvantage).