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.
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.
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.
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.