Understanding Vega's Basic Advantages in Theory Form

As I continue to evolve with my play style in this game I have made critical observations about Vega as a character. When I first started using him in Street Fighter 4 I noticed that most of his combo?s where straight forward, simple, and easy to execute. His specials didn?t work like it did in Street Fighter 2, no more wall dive traps, and his ultra only workes as a well timed AA, reversal to certain moves, and lacked a reliable way to combo into it. But as my play style has evolved Vega is more complex and deep than we think. His play style is one of the more unique ones in the Street Fighter series, and one must constantly focus with Vega if you plan to be successful with his use.

Proper Spacing Control

Proper spacing is the basis for Vega’s meta game. In fact i belive its what seperates him from the rest of the cast. Since Vega’s character design is meant to poke at the opponent this gives him the ability to control space to a level that only Sagat can match. When I say “controling” space I mean the ability to control whats in front of you above you and the space between the opponent and you. if you notice all of Vega’s moves are pokes, sort of like Dhalsim. Dhalsims long reach allows him to poke from far away, but this reach allows him to control the space in front of him. In a sense Vega is like Dhalsim, he has the ability to hit you from a safe distance and continue to do so applying pressure until your out of reach. Vega’s ideal spacing between the opponent and him is cr.lp max range with out the claw. Why this and not cr.mp? Because within the space between you and your opponent you simply have more options than if you where at cr.mp range, and because its faster and safer than cr.mp. For example when you are at cr.lp range you have a faster poke that can link into more damage or into a block string. If you land the cr.lp then you can link into combo’s that do more damage and if you dont you can start applying pressure and force something out of your opponent. When you are in cr.lp range you also have access to Vega’s air throw. Sure you have it at cr.mp range, but its easier to stuff at that range. Learning to control space also forces you to learn and understand the properties of that move. Why is j.rh such a great move for AA? Simply because of the space it controls. Its fast does decent damage and completely controls the space in front and above it. Just like Sagat’s j.mp controls the space in front and below him that is what makes it a great air to ground move.

Proper Zoning and Footsies

Learning to properly zone and do footsies requires excellent spacing control, and poking. The better you learn how to space properly with attacks, flips, wall dives, pokes, and avoiding attacks by jumping back or jumping over the enemy the better you?re zoning and footsies technique will increase. Zoning with Vega requires you to have excellent footsies, they go hand in hand with him since you don?t have the luxury of a fireball or dive kick. Attacks that can zone your opponent into where you want them to move or react a certain way are SHC, FBA, cr.mp, st.mk, st.hp, and st.rh. A well placed SHC can make your opponent jump, stop a barrage of pressure, punish empty jump ins and jump outs, break a charge, and apply pressure. FBA attack can make your opponent back off. The primary application of the non-EX version is to space effectively between you and your opponent, and reset a corner situation. Cr.mp is one of your best zoning weapons, fast, accurate, and hard to punish. It?s great for pressure and can cause holes in your opponent fast if they like to mash out of everything, but be careful because you can be punished easily for it as well. St.rh is a move that you must incorporate into your move set. It has a 4 frame startup, can force your opponent to stop jumping, exerts pressure and stuffs a lot of moves. Great for keeping opponents in the corner and forcing them to stay grounded. As for footsies Vega’s incredible walk speed allows him to walk in and out of range of moves. This allows him to poke better and force a wiff from opponents easily.

Proper Application of Charging

Charging should only be during a block string or a jump in period. if you are charging any other time then you are wasting your limited option’s and should analyze your game a little bit more so you can learn what options you really have. he isnt guile or Balrog so stop playing him like you would other charge characters.

**Proper Offense

Vega is one of those characters where jumping in wont get you far (no crossovers), or neither will rushing in your opponents face. Vega exerts most of his damage at cr.lp length. Most of your damage should come form linking normals. Stop using cr.mp xx EX FBA. Its good damage, but you?re wasting EX meter. Learning to link normals opens up the possibility of added damage, keeps you from wasting EX, keeps you from standing in crouching position, keeps you mobile, lets you focus on footsies, zoning, proper avoidance of attacks, and proper AA. And for those who say its to risky, well your playing online. Its online, just online nothing more. And if your at a local tourney well thats your beef, but sticking to cr.mp xx EX FBA keeps you from being better.

Proper Application of EX

EX is what drives Vega. Most of you guys think that without EX Vega is severely handicapped. While this is true, you?re only handicapped in the safety net area. When using EX in moves in combo?s keep in mind that if you abuse those moves you constantly won?t have EX to save yourself when you need to. Most of us Vega players are used to cr.mp xx into EX FBA, but there are better uses. EX moves can save and will save you when you are in a clutch situation. If an opponent has you in a block string and you manage to see an opportunity to land a cr.lp/lk you can use and EX to escape and reset the situation. I mean its good for damage to, but there are simply other and more useful ways to use EX other than landing cr.mp xx EX FBA.

Proper Application of Blocking

Blocking is a big part of this game. In fact your defense with Vega has to be top notch since he lacks any real reversal to get him out of a clutch. (Think Q) Learning to block with Vega is very hard because most of us are tempted to throw out a cr.lp/mp or a reversal ST, because we want them off, and that is where you will fail and get punished heavily for it. Just stay back and crouch, don?t crack under pressure, and don?t throw out lp unless you now your completely safe. When blocking you have to constantly focus on your opponent for an opening, escape, his throw, or your chance to throw and reset the situation. On crossovers do not be afraid of constant ones. If you keep blocking them your opponent is more than likely to reset the situation try to grab you or messing up. Learning to block with consistency will help you in the long run.

Myth busters?..

We all know that each move has different properties and applications. We also are led to believe that each move has priority over each other. This isn?t necessarily true in Street Fighter 4. In Street Fighter 4 the priorities don?t exist. If they did shoryuken will never trade with SHC or a punch. It has to do more with move invincibility, start up frames, hit boxes, and active frames of a move.

Ultra Combo Possibilities

There is one way to combo into the Ultra and that is FA.

A Theory

When you launch an opponent into the Air with EX FBA there are points when you trade hits with the opponent. You hit the opponent and the opponent hits you, you simply juggle him into the air and you are reset back on the floor. If you notice your opponent is in the air and you are free to hit him with a df.rh move. If df.rh only hits an opponent in a non juggle state so should the Ultra.

Making Vega Better is it the Way to Go

OK so there has been a lot of posting about how to make Vega better. And this has gotten me to think a lot about what would make Vega better, not top tier, but more viable than he already is. And this is the conclusion I came to. No improvement will really make Vega that much better. It would make him better and more user tourney friendly, but the problems lays with us the players. We still have to see a player that uses Vega like Mago uses Sagat, Momochi uses Akuma, Nemo uses Chun. Sure there’s Makoto, but show us some new vids. Point is, do any of us understand Vega as a character. Do most of you guys understand why Blanka is considered a 7-3. If any of you think because its you cant use wall dives then you have failed horribly and should quit playing Vega. Now, I looked at how to make Vega better thread and I these are posts i will agree on.

Invincibility frames on ST, but make it about 3 frame invi that way it wont make it into a shoryuken, and work more as a get the fuck of me move. If the Mask is going to fall of then give us a 25-30% damage boost to justify the 25% health loss. But since they aren?t going to do that for us Capcom really needs to just fuck off with this shit. And instead of giving us a better lp.rcf how about we just simply ask for a faster start up for all RCF so we can link it after a cr.lp or cr.mp to give us more attack options.

Why is Blanka a Bad Match Up for Vega

No why is this such as a bad match up. Is it because all of Blanka’s specials negate all of your special moves. No its because he has walking speed as fast as yours and a jump speed that is just as fast. That means your footsies are negated because he has footsies that are just as fast as yours. his pokes are fast, in fact all of Blanka’s moves are pokes as well. And he can zone you in ways like no other. Jumping in is extremely risky, you cant meaty him because his vertical ball has invincibility frames and horizontal cant be punished unless you have EX and a charge. he can cross over you all day and its hard to react because he jumps fast and lands fast, plus he has excellent air confrontation moves. and he can simply poke and run away better than you can, thats why Blanka is Vega’s worst match up. By the way you can bitch slap Blanka out of the air when you wall dive and he does Vertical Ball, but you need super reflexes.

if any of you have any more basic to advanced meta game post it. and dont derail this into a why Vega is shit. We as players need to understand Vega more, starting from his basic meta game. Im looking at you Merkius and Graph. Any way start thinking. Your also welcome to post your meta game and point flaws out in a person’s play style.

Oh by the way fuck you, you fucking trolls there got it out of the way.

ignore the bold need to fix it and will continue to fix when great ideas are presented.

i disagree with the fact that you said vega should not jump in. Vega’s should jump in. Against many opponents there is nothing they can do to beat a properly spaced / timed j. fierce. It can even beat out a Shoryuken or Tiger Uppercut. Vega’s aerials are the best in the game, you just need to know how to apply them.

Also the Blanka matchup: just because someone thinks not wall diving is the worst part of the Blanka matchup doesn’t mean they should quit. not being able to wall dive actually is a huge problem. because you can’t wall dive to whiff to gain meter, you aren’t gaining meter, and can’t punish horizontal balls. this means Blanka can chip away for free, get a life lead, and sit on it. And once he does that, there is no easy way for Vega to gain the lead back.

I’ve also said that about priorities before. I also don’t think Vega should ever be in c. lp range if he can help it. I disagree with a lot of this info mainly because you don’t even mention the defensive potential Vega has. Saying you shouldn’t combo into EX FBA is also counter productive. If you use j. fierce, cl. fierce, c. strong, EX FBA, you gain almost as much meter as you spend. Why wouldn’t you combo into EX FBA? it’s his most damaging move that can be combo’d off of anything. It doesn’t matter if you need an EX move for emergencies because the bottom line is none of them give you invincibility. You can still use the normal versions for mobility, while I like to save EX for fireball punishing, full-screen punishment, and combos.

I don’t know. The wiki I’ve made is already full of alot of stuff you’ve already said. But it’s good that we’re sharing our thoughts on the forum.

You’re just yelling at people who do c.mk>EX FBA without hit confirming? I agree. But if you can guarantee the EX FBA then it’s the best thing to use your meter on. c.mk>EX FBA is often your best punish when you don’t have time for a df.HK.

Vega must capitalize on EVERY opportunity to do damage…

That’s the GOLDEN RULE for vega… (well one of the rules =P besides the defensive ones)

Nice post pedoviejo and certainly a few new strategies for me to think about, to de-scrub my claw game a little more :wgrin:

You made some good points but i cant say I 100% agree with everything. One of the things that just didnt gel with me was when you said that using c.mp xx EX FBA was a waste. I dont really see how. You even mentioned yourself that Vega is handicapped without meter. He isnt like Dictator who is only handicapped without meter because he cant escape. None of Vegas EXs have invuln frames. Vega is handicapped without meter because he cant deal solid damage without it. IMO using meter to escape is a bigger waste. If corner trapped and you manage to get a move out (assuming its blocked) c.lp(s) xx FBA to safety is just as effective since the opponent is already in blockstun so they cant reversal anyway. If my poke manages to hit them, i just slap on a ST. I definitely agree that learning his links are a good tool though, especially if you sneak in a hit and dont have meter/charge. But when able to punish, a EX FBA combo is better because it knocks down and puts you in great position to play whatever shitty okizeme games you can with Vega.

Good post overall. Ive never gotten a EX FBA trade before but i attribute that to the fact that i never throw naked EX FBAs. Your discovery that this puts them into a “free” juggle state intrigues me. Now i need to hit the training room and do some testing. if Vega can land a ultra off this trade, you may have just won the internet.

No offense or anything, I know you put a lot of time into writing all of this, but some of the things you posted are ridiculous.

The part that really gets me is your section about “properly” using ex meter. Stop using c.mp xx ex FBA? learn to link normals instead? Just because you flash yellow during ex fba and ex shc doesn’t mean you get out for free. I cannot count the number of times I’ve tried to escape the corner with an ex fba only to get stuffed by a jab or any move for that matter. In fact, the only reason Vega needs ex is because that’s his only way of landing decent damage in a combo.

And by the way, I don’t think you should be using SHC to zone. I guess it’s okay to throw out if you want to be unpredictable, but you can’t stop once you hit the wall, it’s pretty easy to see coming, you are always punishable if they block it, they can AA you out of it, and if they trade it’ll almost always be in their favor; you get knocked down and take the hit, they stand and probably take less than you did. It’s not really creating space, it’s more like Vega flying across the screen saying “please block this and rape my face when I land.”

Why wouldn’t you c.mp/mk into an EX FBA? Vega’s damage isn’t the best, so add damage wherever you can. In addition, using EX FBA or ST in the corner is a) hard to do because blockstrings often go from high to low, and they are easily stuffed. You have a few good points but some of them don’t make sense.

I agree and disagree, if that makes sense. You should do waht you can, whenever you can. That includes what you said to do and NOT to do. You have to make use of EVERYTHING.
Including jumping in, at opportune times, rushing in when you find it safe, use EX in combos when you want that little boost of damage, etc.
Things that are useless are useful because of their uselessness… or something like that.

ok you guys are missing the point. So let me clarify.

When i mean use EX to escape the corner throw a little poke when its safe and cancel into an EX move. If you hit him then that is an added bonus, but if you dont then you wont get stuffed by a move and you reset the situation. Think about it a bit please. I will fix it because its rather old and i got my comp wiped and it dont read external devices so in needed to post it somewhere. But that good input just let me clarify any way.

to Jozhear

yes jumping in is important, but every character has ways to deal with jump ins. And if you mispace the jump in that a free combo on their end. So do it when its safe, and beside learning to approach on the ground allows you to build meter and but insane pressure at the same time. And not wall diving is a big deal. I still dont get why you guys think that the way to build meter. Wall diving isnt the basis for Vega’s game any more. I’d assume most of you guys would have gotten that Vega’s wall dives are gimmicks and are easy to punish. Wall diving is good, but there are better ways for building meter.

to mangojoe and Aphelion

Why is it a waste? Because you can do that damage using normals. for example cr.mk into cr.lp into cr.mp or cr.mk into st.rh or cr.hp or even better cr.mp into ST. the point is you can do damage with that move but there are better ways to deal that damage, sure its harder, but the reward is much better. more damage and more meter. But if you want to waste all your meter then by all means go on and waste it. Aphelion the reason you get stuffed is because your not canceling the move your simply throwing it out there with out much regard. And for the SHC use it when you see jump ins and jump for the nearest wall. Sure there better ways to zone, but think a bit about the move and try and see why its a viable zoning tool

And to VAstago

i know dealing damage is important, but look at it this way. Ryu cant deal OMFG destructo combo’s unless he has Ultra in fact that applies to all the cast. The only reason we say that is because all of his links are 1 frame and we say thats unreliable and risky. I’d understand if your in EVO or SBO and you dont want to risk it, but most of us arent. WE usally play online, with some friends or a local tourney. Vega’s game and golden rule should be controling the space around him period. Once you learn to control space you will have a solid understanding of his pokes, footsies, and zoning tools and that is what Vega is all about, its controling space and landing damage when possible, but doing cr.mp xx FBA is just lacking. Its not that much and when you can land it you almost always have better options they just seem riskier.

Great post, but it seems like it’s based on the local area you live in. Like many people have pointed out already, some of those ideal are just not correct.

I very rarely use c mp ExBA myself…I find naked EXBAs to be a great way to punish backdashs, certain jump-ins and indeed carelessness or an over confident walk in by my opponent. For evidence that they work, check out any of my replays. I’ve hit people like Bandofoutsider, Moniraking, awakening16, Death Note LK, Saqs and Orochi Demon with it, proving that it works against the best/most experienced opponents.
Because of damage scaling and Vega’s general lack of worthwhile combos I find it easier to do a 2/3/4 hit normal combo and get out of there, regroup and start over.
At the end of the day it’s whatever works for you: I have huge problems in mirror matches(as my strat don’t work that well)but have been told by several opponents that I am among(if not the best) Vega they have come across. Muhammed ALi never had to fight himself, so I can’t be bothered with mirrors, to be honest.

There you go again, pedo. Nice post :wink:

Have you all noticed how many single cr.lp’s you hit in a match? I noticed that I waste a lot of damage potential because I can’t properly link cr.lp into themselves in a match. Actually I think of the move as a “shortened” version of the cr.mp, range-wise. It’s still as powerful as it can stuff a lot of things, otherwise I wouldn’t be hitting it so much when I’m close up. Imagine you could hit cr.lp (cr.lp) cr.mp EVERY time
Wow, I think I’m gonna practice that.

Also, I do use some of the suggestions you posted, like cr.mk cr.lp cr.mp or st.lk cr.mp.
I think everyone should be able to combo his normals.

I still don’t agree. You can’t do damaging combos using links. you CAN, but not efficiently. Most of the most damaging ones involve 1 frame links which you can’t really rely on. They’re very difficult. A close fierce combo into EX FBA can do almost 400 damage, and even though you can use the EX move to escape in the corner after cancelling it out of a normal it doesn’t make any difference. you can use the meterless version for the same results. If you do combo them in your scenario thats great… but I’d rather hit confirm into a more devastating combo then waste EX doing the same thing I could without meter.

Also saying you should never use Barcelona is wrong too. You can use that move in a myriad of ways, enough ways that you can usually out think someone with it if they expect to always counter with the same method. The more you practice Izuna and understand how to hit with it, too, the more dangerous this move becomes. Barcelona is great because it adds to your ability to control space but every once in a while instead of whiffing it for positioning you can attack for a surprise cross up and it can still work. Just because everything in the game can stuff it doesn’t mean the person playing it is necessarily going to choose that option. You can make them choose the wrong one, and compensate in the air to still strike them.

The most damaging normal combo I can think of would be Close Fierce, Standing Roundhouse / Crouching Fierce which does about 200 damage. Anything else is less and requires one frame links. You can do the same combo, but with a 2 frame link, cancelling into an EX FBA out of a crouch strong for far more damage while still gaining almost as much meter as you spend.

My idea of an effective Vega is one that gains the life lead early, runs away, and opens up offensive opportunities thanks to defensive maneuvering. This is easy because Vega is so fast / fast jumps / fast normals / fast move speed. Then, you make the most of those combos with extremely damaging EX FBA combos thanks to the meter you have using Barcelona to run away. Continue to build meter to counter zoning tools with EX SHC / EX ST / EX RCF. Maybe throw in an ultra for extra stylistic finish.

You probably don’t think the ultra’s useful either. I could show you a million ways you could set it up. I’m beginning to practice empty dashing (without the aid of a focus) into the ultra but I can only get it to come out of forward dashes. The Ultra is as flexible as Barcelona because it hits such an expansive portion of the screen.

I would have to agree for the most part with the OP. I recently started limiting the use of EX FBA and focused more on close-combat presence with c.lp strings ( well, sometimes they string ) and lp and EX RCFs. At first I only started this because I hated how lacking my game was when I did not have meter but now even with meter I prefer this playstyle. That’s not to say I never use EX FBAs or SHCs, gotta do something with that meter. Everyone knows Vega doesn’t actually have a Super.

Great post 1st off.

With the not using ex meter and saving it for needy situations I agree…to a certain extent. Its seems to be very matchup sensitive. Against Geif for example I save some meter so that once I reach the corner Im can EX FBA out of their and get to open space.

Against other characters that I don’t have to be so scared of I will use the meter more liberally in combos and what not. So its a matter of the matchup to a large extent that determines how Vega is going to be used and how to manage the meter throughout the match itself.

The other thing about meter usage which poses a somewhat unique problem for Vega is that his damage out put is on the low end. When you get in or have a chance to do some damage Vega needs to be able to do as much damage as possible for every time he gets in safely. Then he can back up, reasses and try to find a way in again.

This does go in line with what you say about learning the link combos and whatnot so in a sense Im not completely disagreeing with you. As a Vega player he really have to capitalize on mistakes as much as possible. Simply throwing an opponenet after a wiffed move is not going to cut the mustard. So I’d say Yes learn your links but don’t be afraid to use EX when you need to. The damage has to be there, the opponent has to know that if they fuck up that Vega is going to com at them strong and hard.

Other then that I like your section on footies/zoning. This is the fundaments of the game. I can’t remember who said it but I once read that “street fighter is not a fighting game, its a game about controling space” I have always thought about that statement.

once again pretty good post man.

Why not just use c.lp into regular walldive? It’s not like you travel faster just because it’s ex, and I don’t really think that the ex hit is needed to keep them in block stun since you’re already canceling it off of the c.lp. And are you talking about using SHC if you see them jump from full screen? because that’s they only way it’d be semi viable. Usually when people jump in, it’s when they’re close enough so that their jump in attack will land, and most attacks will either stuff you on the way up, or they’ll land and block before you get to them, or they’ll kick you in your face while you’re flying at them.

I think the whole write up is silly. Anyone that tries to shoebox their game like this will end up hating vega even more.

Save EX to escape is ridiculous. Solution is to not get caught in the first place, prevention is better than cure.

The advantage of something like c.mp to ex fba goes beyond the damage it does, it also adds to your zoning and pressure tactics. c.mp has range and priority so thats why you combo into ex fba to punish. Ex FBA will knock down and reset your position opening your game to mixups etc i dont think i need to explain this.

Vega needs to capitalize on every opportunity. even if you wanted to escape with Ex like how you describe theres a good chance you’ll have one meter, if you know how to zone, pressure, mixup and control the game. And with your tactic all your doing is limiting your options.

And im pretty sure ex fba launch into ultra was debunked ages ago.

if you use cr.lp there’s a chance that the opponent will start mashing out a jab or invincible move because they think you might throw out another. hell if your ballsy you can simply do cr.lp, cr.lp xx EX FBA most people start mashing moves thinking that your bound to fuck up so it may catch them off guard. And there you have it capitilizing on the stupid mistake of your opponent just like you keep saying that you have to land as much damage possible. So what did we learn. Well if we do that we can land a EX FBA because the opponent was being arrogant or we get a corner reset, well worth the meter on my book.

As for Ultra its useless, but it has a lot of usefulness to it and there are plenty of ways to use it and set it up

And for the 1 link frames. Well get over it. Top Ryu players love to use f.hp, cr.hp xx shoryuken/fireball/tatsu. And look at Blanka/Honda they abuse st.lp xx elec/bitch slap, its risky but its worth the damage. and look at Gen Players one of there main staples is st.mk xx hands, st.mk xx hands xx EX etc. you dont see them bitching about it. The main reason there has not been any new developments on Vega is because we get some ass who bitches about how he sucks or people who say no thats wrong you need to do cr.mp xx EX FBA as much as possible because 1 frame links are unreliable. Well look at players like Momochi, Daigo, Nuki/Nemo, Jibbo, etc who use and abuse 1 link frames.

Its not that they are unreliable, its that u are afraid to use them and see no use to them because cr.mp xx EX FBA is safer and deals about the same damage + gives you the uber wake up game has that can only be matched by Zangief. Well let me ask you how many more st.lk/cr.lp/cr.lk do you land as apposed to a cr.mp, how many times have you been punished for cr.mp as opposed to the other 3? Do you know see the missed damage potential that you are missing out on? The missed meter building potential. You as a Vega player who says, “you have to capitilize on all chances to deal damage” well your missing out on many oppourtunities, but if you still think that isnt the way then by all means continue playing like you do and i really do hope you get something that i dont get and show me what it is that i dont get.

you obviously didnt get the whole space control idea right. the point of playing footsies/and knowing how to control space is to avoid the corner, but tell me did you think this out or did you just post because you can? and as for the cr.mp having priorities that not true so many moves stuff cr.mp you can even be grabed out of it. And my play style exploits all of Vega’s options spacing myself so that im close enough to punish and apply real pressure using pokes and the cr.lp block strings. creating lots of meter, but like you said using not using cr.mp xx FBA limits my shitty wake up mix up game hence limiting the non existent wake up game Vega has and thus limiting myself to one meter.
OOOKAY** :tup: