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Blocking is an integral action to keep yourself alive.

Knowing how to use which block in which situation will improve your game immeasurably. Not only will you be able to defend better and survive longer, but in some cases you will be able to resume your offense faster.

Ground Block[edit]

Basic ground blocking is the most common defensive option.

To guard against high attacks, simply hold back. To guard against mid attacks, hold back or down+back. To guard against low attacks, hold down+back. If you guard incorrectly, a warning sign will appear over your character. Remember, you cannot block against throws, and some attacks are unblockable.

Air Block[edit]

Everything in the game that is a strike and not an airthrow is air blockable. This is a large departure from previous Guilty Gear games that required Faultless Defense to block grounded strikes. Instead of this, the game has a landing blockstun system. Blockstun is the same for ground and air blocking, but landing while air blocking will put your character into a 19-frame animation where the only option is to block.

Regular blocking raises your R.I.S.C gauge.

Instant Block[edit]

File:GGST IB.png
Begin blocking right before the attack touches you. You will flash white.
Instant Block is a more advanced version of normal blocking.

One must start blocking right before the opponent's attack touches them within 3 frames before the hit connects. Your character will flash white and the word "JUST" will appear on screen if you IB an attack. If you mistime an instant block, you are unable to instant block again for ? frames. This prevents mashing IB. The benefits of IBing are:

  • Prevents chip damage.
  • Pushback is reduced to zero.
  • You gain a small amount of Tension.

You can IB "during" attack patterns. This means that while normal blocking, you can begin IBing at any point if you can time your blocking with the opponent's attacks! Think of it as a mini-game: time your blocking to the rhythm of the opponent's hits. Keep in mind that you can indirectly increase your RISC slightly by IB blocking, so in some situations it can work against you.

Instant Blocking is especially integral when you play very slow characters such as Potemkin, as he experiences no pushback with it and can use Potemkin Buster against unsafe moves; while is also important against characters lacking tools at close quarter such as Axl.

Faultless Defense[edit]

File:GGST FD.png
Powerful defensive option, but drains your Tension as you use it!
Faultless Defense is an interesting and highly useful technique.

It's often used to negate chip damage, but it has other important uses. To perform Faultless Defense, hold any backward direction and press any two buttons except x22px (example: InputIcon 4.pngGGST P Prompt.png+GGST K Prompt.png),. As long as the direction and button are held down, your character will continue to perform Faultless Defense.

  • Consumes Tension slowly while used on the ground and rapidly while used in the air. FD is disabled when you have no Tension.
  • Prevents chip damage.
  • Pushes your character back a large distance while pushing the opponent back slightly unless your character's back is against the corner, during which it will push the opponent back a large distance instead.
  • Prevents R.I.S.C. Level from increasing.
  • Holding FD out of a dash immediately cuts your momentum, allowing you to stop and block instantly, or even fake out your opponent! Tapping FD instead of holding it, or performing crouching FD while dashing will cause you to slide, but you'll still be able to block immediately.
  • You can cancel a clash into FD. This is generally your safest option.

Keep in mind that any blocking technique involving Faultless Defense will raise any attack's blockstun by two frames upon connecting. This may make some strings that normally have gaps to become gapless, so it is important to know what to FD and what to block or IB.

Instant Faultless Defense[edit]

An Instant Faultless Defense occurs when you perform Faultless Defense right when the opponent hits you. It reduces the pushback on your character to zero while pushing back the opponent a large distance. This is especially useful against characters lacking tools at far range, such as Giovanna, or slow-moving characters, such as Potemkin and Nagoriyuki.

Guard Crush[edit]

Guard Crush is a unique state inflicted by several different moves. It acts like normal blockstun where the opponent is stuck in place until the Guard Crush ends, but they cannot YRC to get out. If you were to RRC a move that forces a Guard Crush, the opponent will behave like they blocked it instead of being forced to take the hit. It's more of an aesthetic effect than anything, but disabling your guard cancel option is important to note.

Unblockable Attacks[edit]

Finally, some attacks are completely unblockable, meaning the only way to avoid getting hit is to move out of the way! For example, Potemkin's Heavenly Potemkin Buster (236236S) is completely unblockable against airborne opponents.

Yellow Roman Cancel[edit]

File:GGST YRC.png
It's just like Xrd, but not at all!
Yellow Roman Cancel is a defensive form of Roman Cancel that puts the opponent in an extended slowdown state if the shockwave connects.

To perform a Yellow Roman Cancel, press any three buttons (except x22px, as that will cause a burst) simultaneously while in blockstun. YRC's are used to stop an attacking opponent and reset the momentum of the match. Each character's YRC are the same, but they are also omnidirectional (with it being a bubble).

Throw Break[edit]

File:GGST ThrowBreak.png
Works for ground and air normal throws.

If you input a normal throw at the same time as an opponent within a 5F frame window, then both characters will back off and recover in 31F.

For air throws, the throw break window is 4F, and the recovery animation is 31F. Both players regain double jump after.

  • Only normal throws can be broken; command throws cannot be broken
  • Throw breaks CANNOT be performed while recovering from a move, so unsafe attacks are still unsafe?
  • The throw break animation is fully invincible


Bursts are an extremely expensive but highly versatile tool in Guilty Gear.

To Burst, press x22px + any other attack button. The character will rise into the air and an aura of energy will strike all around him. Bursts are strike and throw invincible, so the only way to beat them is to jump cancel or Roman Cancel and block it. Depending on a character's current state, the Burst will be either Blue or Gold.

Both types of bursts have their uses:

Blue Bursts[edit]

  • Can be used while blocking or while being hit to deny the opponent damage and reset the pace of a match.
  • Blue Bursts are invincible during startup, but completely vulnerable while falling.

Gold Bursts[edit]

File:GGTST Gold Psyche Burst.png
Full meter on hit! Cannot be comboed into.
  • Can be used to gain momentum, press an advantage, and can be used on wakeup as a reversal that also grants full Tension on hit!

Disabling Psych Burst[edit]

File:GGST Burst Disabled.png
Usually this is a bad sign

Psych Bursts (namely Blue Bursts) can be temporarily disabled even with a full Burst Gauge. A red X will cover the Burst Gauge during this time.

Blue Bursts will be disabled while:

  • Being thrown.
  • Being hit by an Overdrive Attack.
  • Getting hit by attacks that force the opponent in place in non-standard hitstun, such as a wall-splat state.

More information on the burst meter can be found here.