My Ky Trade Secrets thread
12-22-2011 05:33 PM
I've decided to share my trade secrets about Ky just for the heck of it, since I barely play the game more than once a month nowadays. I'll be intermittently posting random thoughts, tricks, and correcting misperceptions about matchups and other things that I've seen in the forum.
Mittie Blue Light
This is a pretty old trick since the days of XX. Advanced players know that one of Ky's burst points (places where you can burst for free without worry) is right before the second hit of the Stun dipper. So a lot of advanced players will burst right at that point to get out of being comboed.
One of the best Ky players ever (Mitsutoshi) figured out that you can kill this burst point by FRCing in the middle of a combo to let the opponent hang himself with a burst. If the opponent doesn't burst, it's a neutral situation so it's not a big deal. If the opponent bursts, you can then block into an air combo or if you're a baller like Mittie, you can air throw them out of the burst. This requires good yomi and being able to FRC the stun dipper on demand. Japanese players nicknamed this tactic after Mitsutoshi, which roughly translated is "Mittie Blue Light"
EDIT: Old #R Video example of Mitsutoshi doing his blue light special against Buppa Ky @ 4:03 to 4:10
This is my personal variation on the Mittie Blue Light, though the application and situation is quite different. As far as I can tell, I am the only Ky player that does this, but I've apparently used this effectively enough that Nor-Cal people name this trick after me.
Certain types of players like to normal jump straight up roughly a quarter screen distance away in order to zone Ky out. Or, they like to air dash into or just within this distance to zone or position themselves to attack Ky. This is not a bad idea since it is outside of Ky's AAs and does limit Ky's options somewhat. This is also especially effective when Ky is cornered, as it serves a double purpose of preventing him from escaping from the corner and being just outside his effective range.
So how does Ky deal with that situation? The eh-sama special is to: Stun-Dipper to close the distance, then FRC, and air throw them. If timed and spaced right, this is more or less indefensible as you will end up right at the perfect position to airthrow them, and the Stun Dipper will place you where you need to be very quickly. This is especially effective when you're in the corner because not only do you get out of the corner, you air throw your opponent into the corner and seize the initiative. Of course, this requires that you know the stun dipper distance and FRC timing down pat, but that's a requirement for playing Ky anyway.
Theoretically you can FRC and VT to fish for a counterhit, but I think that is needlessly risky since the air throw is almost guaranteed and 100% safe even if you miss.
EDIT: Video Example @1:33 and 2:15
Next up: Ky vs. Zappa
Last edited by ehuangsan; 05-29-2012 at 09:07 PM.
12-23-2011 05:17 AM
Ky v. Zappa
This is something that I think the Zappa forum gets right and the Ky forum gets wrong. Ky players here seem to think that it's 4-6 or worse, whereas Zappa player think it's even. I've played this matchup quite often, and I think it's dead even.
At first glance, Zappa seems to have a crazy advantage. He can run under your fireballs and hit you, dog is a pain, ghosts are a pain, Raoh can kill you in one hit, and overall, Zappa is hitting you a lot more often than you're hitting him (maybe something like 6.5-3.5). A lot of Ky tricks are useless on Zappa as well.
However, Zappa does have a lot of severe disadvantages as well:
- He does even less damage than Ky on average, outside of some situation specific combos and Raoh
- He is horrible in the air against Ky, even with sword or Raoh.
- Raoh doesn't have any real mixups or overheads outside of 5d and run up DP/throw
I think the reason why Ky players feel this is a bad matchup is because Zappa has some quirky anti-Ky counters that no other character has, and are not used to getting hit by lots of ticky-tack stuff so often. Usually, Ky is the one doing dick for damage and eating a haymaker to lose the game. Getting ticky-tacked to death while playing it straight while trying to land a haymaker instead is a reversal of what most Ky players are used to, but really, that's what Ky should be doing in this matchup.
Your best poke is, rather surprisingly, jump HS. It's actually difficult for Zappa to beat jump straight up HS. His best options are to run up 2HS, air-throw or specific answers with various summons (AA dog, 2HS sword, dp sword). If he air throws you into OTG summon, it doesn't really hurt all that much, but a lot of times, he'll just end up getting counterhit in the air for sadness.
The problem with 2HS is that there's only a specific spot where it will work and if he's not there, then you'll counterhit him into a ground SE combo for high damage. Also, you can mix it up with air SE FRC for counterhit into high damage combo too.
Against the summons, you simply have to use jump HS somewhat more intelligently, but the basic principles are the same. I've tried this even against good Zappa players (they don't exist in Nor-Cal), and it works as well.
Against Raoh, you simply have to realize that he has no mixup or real overheads outside of 5D or maybe run up DP/throw. So you can play a patient zoning game with 2S, 5S, and canceling into ground SE intermittently. Good Zappas will do a combination of pressure and chip. If he goes for pure lockdown/chip, you'll lose 20%-30% life from pure chip damage, all of your tension and your guard gauge will be jacked sky high.
That will be his chance to come back, and there's not much you can do about that, which makes the matchup more even.
Zappa will hit you a lot with oddball stuff with ghosts and dog, and sometimes sword, but if you're zoning correctly with jump HS, 5S, 2S, intermittent air SEs and ground SEs, you'll find that most of his stuff doesn't hurt. Even though he's hitting you 65% of the time. If you're doing it right, it will turn into a long and rather boring drawn out match quite often.
My rule of thumb for matchups: If Ky can choose to do nothing but passively control space, then the matchup is even or favorable to Ky. If Ky cannot choose to do that and is obligated to take active action, then Ky is a disadvantage. Since Ky can opt to passive control space for the entire round with jump HS, and various ground pokes, it's even since Zappa will hit you a lot.
Next up: I dunno. Maybe Ky v. May or accepting whatever requests.
Last edited by ehuangsan; 12-23-2011 at 05:24 AM.
12-23-2011 02:59 PM
You know what I'm gonna ask for...
My thoughts on the matchup can be found in the second half of this post.
Last edited by qwerty; 12-23-2011 at 03:08 PM.
12-23-2011 11:26 PM
Sure, I can do that.
Ky vs. Johnny
This is one of my most common matchups. I think this matchup is either 5.5-4.5 or 6-4 in favor of Ky. As with my maxim above, Ky can choose to control space with a combination of pokes and fireballs, and the burden of proof is on Johnny to do something about it. I think this match is easier to play as Ky than as Johnny.
If Johnny does catch you, you can die very quickly, but Johnny does have to set himself up to catch you, which isn't easy. Ky is allowed roughly 2 horrible blunders and perhaps one extra minor blunder a round, which is incredible since Ky is normally restricted to one horrible blunder and one minor blunder or less against most other characters.
The Faith Barrage
Almost a decade ago (gee I am old), there was a Ky player known as Faith, who is in my opinion, the best Ky player ever, even better than Mittie, Buppa, Machaboo, Hayashi and whomever. He made Ky look absolutely broken in GGXX and #R, which is very difficult to do. It would've been interesting to see what he would do if he played AC, but alas, he retired in the heyday of #R, which is roughly the time when I also retired.
Anyway, one day, he played a legendary three game match against a Johnny player named Yua, where he decided to troll his opponent. He won the match by throwing over a hundred stun edges and about 40 CSEs while being an all around asshole. This is one game from that match.
The Japanese nickname for this match roughly translates to "The Faith Barrage", but soon it morphed into a cohesive system and named the same. Thus, the "Faith Barrage" was born, and other Japanese Ky players copied the ideas from this match. It's not really anything concrete, but more like a general set of principles:
- From half to 3/4ths screen away, zone with a flurry of 5S, 2S, SEs,and TK SEs.
- Baiting your opponent to do half screen whiffs by dash breaking outside their max range, and punishing the whiffs with an SE or 5S/2S.
- Passively controlling your space and placing the burden on your opponent to do something about it.
- Identifying patterns involving heavy pokes in your opponents block strings, FDing right before the heavy poke, and punishing the resulting whiff with a SE.
- Generally being an all around asshole.
I think the Faith Barrage still works against Johnny; the only changes are that Johnny has a jackhound that can go through SEs and that flying cheddar beam move FRC that allows him to fly at you at almost full screen away (sorry, I'm bad with move names). Still, the above principles are the same; you just have to be a little smarter with it. When Johnny pokes, he's fully committed to it since they're slow, so you can punish a lot of them with SEs and slashes. I think this matchup is worse for Johnny in AC than in XX since Johnny's air pokes kinda suck now in comparison to Ky's AAs.
Basically, the match is like an outboxer versus an inboxer, where Ky is the outboxer (like Apollo vs. Rocky or Mashiba vs. Ippo or whatever you want). Johnny does massive damage once he gets you (30-40% without coin, 50-65% with), but the burden of proof is on him to get to you. You can jab away with SEs, slashes and maintain your space. Johnny has to patiently eat or block the occasional SE or poke and inch his way in to earn a coin and a chance to slaughter you. If he hasn't coined you, Johnny isn't really all that scary and you can be fairly aggressive with the SEs and pokes.
Now if he does push you into the corner, he does get pretty good chances to do a combo into coin for potential massive damage, or if he's coined you already, then some massive damage combo. On defense, it's important to pay attention to whether he has level 2 or level 1 Mist Finer, since if he only has level 1, you can guess towards blocking high against Johnny's jump cancelable pokes or at quarter screen distances to prevent the TK ensenga. If you're a baller, you can slashback the TK ensenga and 5HS for counterhit, but I think that's excessively risky. If he has level 2 Mist Finer, then you have to guess if he's going to TK ensenga or mist finer low, and more often than not you will guess wrong and lose 50-65% life. Oh well, that's one horrible blunder and not death and in comparison to other characters, it doesn't hurt all that much.
Consistent with the Faith Barrage, always check what kind of auto-pilot block strings the Johnny player likes to do, because if he likes to incorporate a 5S or HS somewhere in it, pushblock before the S/HS and punish his S/HS whiff with a SE or 5S. If he likes to abuse 5HS/6HS in a block string, check him with a counterhit stun dipper for good damage. Play like an asshole all around, control your space, and sometimes, see if you can bait Johnny into whiffing stupid pokes from quarter to half screen away, and smacking him with a SE, 5S or sometimes, CH stundipper. If done right, these matches are often pretty long and somewhat boring.
Next up: I dunno. Requests or Ky v. May or other Ky tactics/strategies/tricks.
Last edited by ehuangsan; 12-24-2011 at 12:59 AM.
12-24-2011 03:50 AM
As long as Johnny has meter, he can easily do coin damage without coins (MSDJ, JI Killer Joker). Having a Level 2 Mistfiner does help with confirming MSDJ, though.
Originally Posted by ehuangsan
Last edited by qwerty; 12-24-2011 at 04:01 AM.
12-27-2011 10:24 PM
Creating Chaos and Inducing Variance - Stealing Victories From People Who Play Better Than You
"You must take your opponent into a deep dark forest where 2+2=5, and the path leading out is only wide enough for one." - Mikhail Tal
Sometimes, especially at tournies, you will run into an opponent who is clearly better than you at many if not most aspects of the game, and playing your normal game or playing your character by the book will simply not work. Yet, because tournies are often short matches (best of three or maybe even single games), your chances of winning a match against such an opponent are never zero, and sometimes, luck can be on your side. Often, you can bring about such luck by creating chaos and inducing variance.
What do I mean by creating chaos and inducing variance? I would define it as reducing the difference in skill by creating highly volatile situations where the chances of your opponent making a mistake increases, even if your own chances of getting utterly crushed increases disproportinately. Usually, the creator of such high risk and high variance situations will be the one at a disavantage, but sometimes, luck will be on that person's side and reward him with a victory. With a few exceptions, top players in pretty much any game prefer to avoid such situations in order to let their skill difference and "correct play" determine the outcome. This is to snap them out of that mentality.
Now, I do not mean doing something stupid. Jumping in recklessly to challenge Ky's 6P AA when Ky has already demonstrated that he can and will use 6P when you do so and that yes, you will get counterhit every time, is not creating chaos, it is being stupid. What I am talking about it trying to place yourself in a situation where, although there are very high chances of the opponent refuting your attempt and leaving you at a worse or round losing situation, there are also high chances of you inducing a lot of damage and stealing the round away. Examples include random super (like DOT or whale), reckless and illegitimate blockstrings to induce counterhits, throwing air FRC S Stun Edges when it would be extremely risky to do so in the hopes of a counter hit into high damage combo, normal super jumping over your opponent and air dashing recklessly to confuse the opponent into doing something wrong, and so on.
Several years ago in one of the NorCal ranbats, I was up against very good Axl player. At the time, I had just taken up AC casually since retiring during the #R days and was not really all that use to AC Ky. In the first game, I tried to play the matchup straight up as Axl-Ky matches go, however, he clearly knew how to use Axl better than I knew how to play Ky, and he knew the AC matchup a lot better than I did. The result was that I got grounded into submission very quickly and lost the first game rather horribly.
So in the second game, in order to increase the variance of the match, I proceeded to blitz him extremely aggressively and put him into a difficult decision. In the process of locking him down, I was utilizing a lot of illegitamite pressure strings and tactics in order to increase the variance of the situation. Basically, if he countered correctly, I would lose 70%+ life and the initiative and with it, the game. If he countered incorrectly, he would lose roughly half of his life and get knocked down, whereupon I could blitz him again.
Normally, this would not be a wise strategy as I would lose in the long run from the sheer damage disparity. However, since the next loss would be elimination and I was up against someone who knew how to play the game better than I did, this was better than just being grounded into submission again in a straight up contest.
Luckily, he reacted incorrectly. He either did not want to enter into such complications, or perhaps he was waiting for a throw attempt to counter attack, but for whatever reason, he chose to block instead of mashing buttons. This decision isn't really a mistake; normally, mashing buttons is a stupid idea in Guilty Gear, but in this case, he really needed to press a button to get out. Instead, he sat and blocked 30 game seconds worth of seemingly perpetual blockstun, losing all of his tension and 25% life from pure chip damage. Eventually, he tried to do something, but chose the wrong button and pretty much lost all of his life and the round with it. There's probably a vid of that match somewhere out there, but I dunno where.
I still lost the match, but it shows that variance can be your friend in short matches. Of course, this isn't a viable long term solution, as your higher skilled opponent will eventually crush you even more disproportinately over the long run if you continue to do that all the time. There is no substitute for skill. But when all else fails, sometimes you just gotta roll the dice.
Last edited by ehuangsan; 12-27-2011 at 10:31 PM.
01-09-2012 04:20 PM
Jab Whiff Throw/Crossover Greed Sever mixup
This is one of my favorite tricks. A pretty huge portion of my game revolves around trying to get people to mash buttons because they're afraid of getting thrown. After I throw my opponent a few times using various throw tricks, eventually the opponent gets irritated enough to mash buttons to avoid getting thrown when he sees one of the setups. That is when I switch and go for counterhit instead, hopefully leading to more damage than a throw would have given.
One of the tricks I use on oki is to run up to my opponent and whiff a 5P at point blank just as they're getting up. This is a pretty old trick since the early days of SF. The jab whiff is just about the same time the throw invincibility on wakeup goes away, so you can immediately throw them once the jab annimation is done. Plus, it causes opponents to freeze up because they see you are doing something and instinctively (at least in higher level play) block.
Eventually, your opponent will catch on and will start mashing throw in anticipation to the jab whiff throw. That's when you do a crossover greed sever instead. If they mashed HS expecting a throw, you will sail right over their HS and counterhit them into an air combo.
EDIT: Video Example @ 4:13
Last edited by ehuangsan; 01-16-2012 at 04:45 AM.
04-30-2012 06:02 AM
Conducting a Post-Mortem
I am often astounded that a lot of players don't even bother to conduct a post mortem of their matches afterwards. Back when I was in the fighting game scene, footage was rare and I would have actually paid money to watch my own footage. Since there was no footage, I had to memorize what happened during each match and recall it in my mind later, which is a very inefficient way of doing things. Had I had such footage available in my day, I would have been a much better player as a result.
With the advent of sites like Youtube, there really is no excuse now. All of that practice with training mode, all of those matches you play mean absolutely nothing if you are solidifying your flaws by not figuring out what you're doing wrong from your match footage. In fact, since I rarely play now and have hideous execution errors everywhere due to lack of practice time, I think that the only thing that keeps me remotely competitive nowadays is that I peruse and break my tourney footage down before I enter the next tourney, just to see where I currently stand.
Even for the people that bother to review their own tourney footage, a lot of them refuse to check their egos and will only look at matches where they won. It is a lot more interesting to review matches where you lost, since you get to see exactly why you got annihilated and what mistakes you made. Also, a lot of people will say things like, "Well, I should've done wake up super here", or "Why didn't that scrub do X", without taking into account the context and the opponent that they were playing.
I find it helpful to vet through my own matches by mentally assigning chess notations to specific moves/situations. The notations are as follows:
?? - A horrific blunder, usually leads to an instantaneous loss
? - A mistake
?! - A dubious move, but had some logic to it.
!? - An interesting move
! - A good move
!! - Something downright amazing
I'll give an example for one round of a match that I lost:
0:09 - Ky - Greed Sever opening (?!)/Slayer get hit (?). Actually, I happened to notice that magz wasn't even looking at the screen right when the round was starting, so I figured maybe I could catch him napping. Turns out that he wasn't paying attention at all, and got hit.
0:26 - Slayer IAD (?) - Three IADs in a row, each time getting punished for small damage. You would think that he would stop, but magz likes to be hyper aggressive.
0:36 - Ky Blue burst (?!) - I probably should've held on to this burst, but I wanted to keep the initiative, and I figured he was going to 2D anyway, guaranteeing that the burst would hit.
0:46 - Ky j. d (??)/Slayer DOT (!?). At the time, I didn't know that I could die from DOT instantaneously from this position, but I should've figured that magz would attempt something hyper aggressive like that. Had he done this on reaction, it would be a ! for Slayer, but the super flash came before the J.D, so clearly was going to do this no matter what I did. It gets a !? because it's not a bad try.
05-09-2012 08:11 PM
These are some very insightful posts sir. I'm trying to get back into AC now and it is nice to see some fresh information abounds. Once I can get some vids of myself I will definitely utilize your system of analysis.
Some Ky vs Slayer information would be appreciated. It is my most frequent match-up by far, but it would be interesting to hear some advice from someone far more competent than myself. I am just always getting stuffed with a lot of his higher priority moves.
Honestly any and all tricks and tactics are welcome.
05-10-2012 07:16 PM
Sure, I'll make Ky vs. Slayer my next writeup.
Originally Posted by The DMK
Ky vs. Slayer
The Buppa Ball
Optimizing damage in endgame
Last edited by ehuangsan; 05-10-2012 at 07:44 PM.