Sometimes you'll see the word "Punish" on the HUD. This means that you punished the opponent's attack.
Attacks are punishable on block if the defender has enough time to hit the attacker after blocking the attack. Each character's frame data lists the amount of time to punish an attack on block; this is known as frame advantage/disadvantage. An attack that is -11 on block means that the defender can use an attack that has startup 11 frames or faster to punish the opponent. Of course just because an attack is fast enough does not mean it can reach the opponent, so knowledge and practice are still necessary, even when a player knows the numbers!
The HUD message is helpful for learning mid-game - did you actually punish the opponent's attack or were they just not blocking? Now you can know for sure.
A reversal is the term used to refer to any special move that has invulnerability frames on startup, allowing them to serve as strong anti-airs and "get off me" tools to escape pressure. They are also commonly referred to as DP's or "Dragon Punch" and the two terms can be used interchangeably. Most characters have this input on 623X or 6S.
While DPs are very useful tools, they are considered high-risk if not done on reaction. A blocked DP has enough recovery for opponents to land a full combo.
Although GBVS makes inputting the DP easy with use of the special button, there are edge cases that can cause both the Easy and Technical input to fail.
- Mashing DP on wakeup will often cause it to not come out on the first possible frame and will lose to meaties. If you want to DP it is best to do it timed with your character's wakeup animation and to perform the input cleanly.
- If you accidentally input 3S the game will prioritize your character's down special resulting in a 2S instead of a 6S.
- If you press 6S outside of the game’s buffer window no special move will occur. This timing will change based on how much blockstun you are in or if you are in recovery of another move while attempting to DP.
A few methods are available to beat reversals
Many characters in the game have a safe jump off of hard knockdowns that involve a Jump or Superjump. A safejump is timed in such a way so that a jump in attack will connect if the defender presses an attack or blocks, but will recover in time to block if the opponent uses a DP on wakeup.
Please refer to the individual character pages for safejump information.
Gapless Low blockstrings
Any blockstring that utilizes low attacks will result in a failed DP because of the forward motion in the DP that causes the character to stop blocking before the move is applied. This applies to both easy and technical input variations.
- Safe Jump > 2L > 2L
- Any Meaty Jump-in Attack > 2L > 2L
- 2L > 2L > 2L
- Other character specific setups involving gapless blockstrings > low pressure.
Frame advantage is the concept of who is free to act first after an interaction.
This is most commonly brought up after blocking an attack; who can act first - the attacker or defender? A negative value on block means the defender can act first, and a positive value means the attacker can act first. The value shows exactly how many frames one character can move before the other. For example:
- If a move is -5 on block, it means the defender is free to move 5 frames before the attacker.
- If a move is +2 on block. it means the attacker can move 2 frames before the defender.
Each character's full Frame Data page shows both the frame advantage when an attack is blocked as well as on hit. Air attacks don't have frame advantage listed since that value is heavily influenced by when the attacker lands after an attack.
Frame advantage assumes that the attack connects as soon as possible against a standing/crouching opponent, and that the attacker does not cancel the attack into anything else. Hitting an attack later into its active frames is called making the move "meaty".
For more information on using frame data see here.
Players often want to input an action immediately after guarding or after getting knocked down. GBVS has an input leniency window that makes these types of inputs easier. If you enter your input 3 frames before you return to neutral, then the attack will come out as soon as possible.
Normal Attacks, Evade, Guard, Skills, Skybound Arts and Super Skybound Arts can all benefit from this.
There are a few caveats to this:
- Backdash still must be timed perfectly - they can not use the input leniency window
- Evade will have a 3F ONLY if you were guarding by holding back, not by holding the Guard button
During an opponent's Skybound Art, the screen freezes briefly. This is known as a super flash or super freeze. Most supers have startup even after the super freeze, which means that provided you're not in the middle of an action and your timing is good, you can react to these attacks with an Evade, or a super of your own!
Skybound Art attacks list their startup values as: startup pre-flash + startup post-flash.
Meaning an attack with startup 5+5 has 5 frames of startup, then the super flash, then hits the opponent after 5 more frames for a total of 10 frames of startup.
- Supers With No Startup After Super Flash
- Some supers are special: they have no additional startup after the super flash. This means that you can not time a counter attack after these supers - you can think of the superflash as just a formality, the super has already become active. These supers most often come in the form of powerful command grabs.
- Ladiva's Super Skybound Art is a prime example of this; you must already have some way to avoid The Shape of Love BEFORE the super flash or else it will be too late.