USFIV novelty matches


These days we play novelty matches more often than the regular version.

There’s basic stuff like:

  • Rose ball
  • Big man grapplers/Females/Boss chars etc only

Then there’s stuff like:

  • You get to disable 1 or 2 of your opponent’s buttons after they choose their character
  • Blindfolded matches with coaching

Usually we try to make it so that the games have some sort of strategy involved:

  • Ryu vs Ryu, 25% health, 30 second clock, no jumping, only allowed. Loser is the one who dies, or who ends up furthest from the halfway line.
  • Ryu vs Ryu, 0% health, infinite time, no jumping, only sweep and throw allowed
  • Ken vs Ken, 25% health, 30 second clock, no jumping, only HP DP allowed. Loser is the one who dies, or who ends up furthest from the halfway line.
  • Normal and EX fireballs only, similar rules as previously mentioned games.

Any others?


Two Codys One Knife. 30 seconds. Cody holding the knife at time up wins.


I used to do something like that with some friends:
-Can’t move forward,backwards or jumping forward or backwards
-First hit wins (we don’t do 0% becuase chip damage)

We move by doing normals or specials that move you forward or backward, like Ryu’s tatsu or divekicks, pretty fun


Basic one is “Rival Matchups” not just “Fight your rival!” but stuff like Cody vs Poison or Elena vs Deejay where it’s thematic rivals.

1 Button matches. You can only use 1 button for the entire match. You can do anything you can do with that 1 button but ONLY that button. (3P/3K not allowed).


I do this in ranked frequently.


Wouldn’t that be kinda boring without any way to break down defense, wouldn’t it be just holding downback?


Depends. Firstly, as I said, I find that particularly fun in ranked where the other person doesn’t immediately know I’m doing it.

Secondly, your milage will vary by the button. Plenty of people can threaten with only one button. I like Claws Mk. Still better in footsies than over half the cast and still have Command throw characters, too, can still threaten.


Focus fighter: can only attack with focus, red focus and W - Ultra.
All characters allowed, standard 99 second time limit, all movements and actions that do not have hit boxes allowed, no jumping attacks except for aerial ultras and finally, violations of any of the rules are a forfeit of the round.


Nah. With Cody for instance I can choose HP.

I get close HP frame trap, HP Criminal Upper, HP Badstone, F+HP Overhead, far HP anti air, crHP anti air and whiff punish, Neutral Jump HP pressure, HP Zonk for fireballs. ect

You gotta look at ALL of the tools available to your character that uses that one button. People can still chip you out for instance. DB does become a lot stronger without throws but typically when people play novelty matches they aren’t “playing to win at all costs” they just are fucking around so they’ll still try and deplete the other persons health by fighting.

It’s fun and can actually improve your game somewhat because it’ll cause you to think creatively about how to utilize a tool you normally might not use a specific situation. Improves your spacing with some buttons too.

I did it once with Cody with MP. Beat a Fei player who came back after beating me one time then he lost the 2nd time. By the 2nd time I had started to zonk his Rekkas since he was a bit obvious with the timing/spacing he’d do it.

Makoto I’ve done but only vs CPU. She can actually get pretty far with just MP. You get her god button (sMP) you get F+MP for pressure/approaches. crMP - MP Hayate for buffer footsies and her MP Oroshi overhead which combos to sMP (1F link with no plinking though since it’s only 1button character specific too). A bit tough to anti air with only MP Fukiage and sMP though lol. Found I went air 2 air a lot with jMP

Another fun one is “Only specials” you can’t use normals AT ALL. This one really gets lopsided for some characters though lol. With just specials Vega is pretty garbage for example.


I’ve lost many matches to Viper players who only use specials, makes me feel like a scrub.


Here’s a suggestion for one button or all special matches for ultimate hilarity. Lock the button but play random select.


We once played “spectators map buttons, players figure it out during matches”. Quite funny when you realize that they can map some buttons to nothing and then put LP and LK on opposite ends on 8-button sticks.


Turn the health down to 0 or whatever in vanilla, maximum rounds: poor mans Divekick