Zato-1 is a puppet master who controls his alter-ego: Eddie. Zato and Eddie’s attacks can be used independently of each other, allowing the duo to launch deadly, coordinated attacks.
Eddie can be summoned or recalled at will or summoned directly into an attack with certain special moves. The Eddie Gauge depletes when Eddie is out and when he attacks, and refills when he’s recalled. If Eddie or Zato take damage, the gauge is completely drained, unsummoning Eddie. An empty gauge refills slower than usual, so try to recall him before it empties.
The duo fight by using their moves in ways that cover each other. Zato’s 2S is a good poking low due to its speed and range. Combine it with Eddie's "Leap", which attacks air space, to cover massive sections of the screen. Eddie’s "Pierce" is a double-hit poke. Zato can cover the gap between the hits with strikes like c.S or his command grab - Damned Fang, for a strike/throw mix-up. "Oppose" allow Eddie to absorb an attack from the enemy, letting Zato punish with powerful counter hit moves like 2H. During okizeme, setting up Eddie’s lockdown move - "That's a lot", gives Zato a strong mix-up opportunity. Drunkard Shade can be used to reflect projectiles or to position Eddie behind the opponent, allowing Zato and Eddie to attack from both directions.
Zato struggles on defense due to his slow pokes, poor defense value and lack of reversals. While blocking, Zato can’t summon Eddie to cover for him, leaving him quite vulnerable. Fret not, as their combined attacks make for great offense and space control, allowing you to stay out of defensive positions if you play your cards right.
Perhaps the most complex character in the roster, Zato and Eddie reward players who can master their unorthodox control scheme by providing a terrifying tag-team assault.
|Lore:||The former leader of the Assassin's Guild, now revived after once experiencing death.
Before his resurrection, he was a calm and thoughtful person. However, after all he went through, he ended up unable to feel an emotional response to anything. He no longer finds significance in anything in his life, be it good or bad, nor can he feel joy or anger.The closest he gets to feeling emotion would be his feelings for Millia.
|Zato-1 , classified as a Technical type, is a shadow wielder who can pressure his opponent with simultaneous attacks.|
If Eddie is unsummoned before the gauge runs out, the gauge will turn white, and quickly recover (55 HP recovered each frame until full). Eddie can be summoned again at any time during this.
If Eddie or Zato is hit by an attack, or the shadow gauge is depleted fully, the gauge will turn red and will recover at a slower rate (15 HP recovered every frame until full, 200f duration). During this time, Zato cannot summon Eddie until the gauge is full again. Avoiding this as much as possible is important to preserving Eddie.
For more information on how to practice controlling Eddie, refer to novriltataki's How to Zato video below. (While the video uses Xrd for the example, most tips stated in the video are applicable to Zato in Strive.)
- Tied with 2P for Zato's fastest button
- Solid range for a jab
Most commonly used in staggerLeaving gaps between attacks in block pressure. Can be used to condition and bait the opponent to try and attack at a bad time or do something risky to stop it. pressure or to mash out of gaps in the opponent's pressure. On hit you can either go into repeated 5P/2Ps or 6P when close enough, allowing you to meaty with 236P.
Gatling Options: 5P, 2P, 6P, 6K, 6H
- Standing low
- Is jump cancelable.
Can combo into 2D after for a knockdown, allowing you to summon Eddie safely and start your okizemeApplying offense while the opponent is getting up from being knocked down.. Most commonly seen in solo pressure to catch fuzzy jump, or high/low mixups incorporating Eddie as a low option.
Gatling Options: 6P, 6K, 6H, 5D, 2D
- Combo/blockstring filler
- Is jump cancelable
When blocked, you can go into c.S > 5H > 22H or 236P to create a frametrap, the latter of which is a great way to summon Eddie safely in pressure.
c.S can also be used in Leap loop combos (c.S > 2H > -S-...), but generally, doing 2S > 2H > -S- nets more damage. Use c.S in leap loops when you cannot pick up with 2S, or intend to end the loop, by doing ... > c.S > 2S > 2H > ender.
Gatling Options: 6P, 6K, f.S, 2S, 5H, 2H, 6H, 5D, 2D
- Long range 2 hit poke.
Not used often due to having slightly more recovery when whiffed compared to 2S, but can be useful to beat attacks like Potemkin's Hammer Fall/Slide Head, or moves that high profileMoves that shift your hurtbox upwards to avoid lower hitting attacks. Also referred to as "low crush". 2S.
Gatling Options: 5H, 2H
- Combo/blockstring filler.
- Causes a lot of blockstun, which makes it a great move to cancel into summons.
- On grounded counterhit, causes stagger
On hit, can combo into 22H for a soft knockdown. On block, you can cancel it into either 22H or 236P for a frametrap, the latter being a great way to summon Eddie in pressure safely. On counterhit, the slowdown allows both hits of 236P to combo, making possible a 5H CH 236P 236P 236S confirm that sends the opponent to the opposite corner.
- Standard dust attack.
Uncharged, it is slightly faster than 6K. Cannot be converted off of without Eddie in play or RC. When you hit a grounded opponent with it charged, you can chase them by inputting 7/8/9, and follow up with a combo afterwards. Use this to open up crouching opponents.
- Universal anti-air with invuln
- On both grounded and aerial counterhit, causes hard knockdown
- On normal hit, causes soft knockdown
Great anti-air for opponents that like to airdash a lot. On normal hit, you can follow up with 236P to meaty with Eddie. On counter air hit, it will cause a hard knockdown, allowing you to cancel into empty summon (214H) and set up your okizeme.
- Overhead command normal.
This overhead can be good for opening up the opponent however it requires them to be blocking and respecting Zato to get hit. Can be converted with either a roman cancel or Eddie. Be sure to use this once in a while to catch them by surprise.
- Command normal mixup tool in which Zato leaps into the air and puts out an attack.
- Airborne frames 8-33
- Can be canceled with flight on hit/block.
Great way to bait lower hitting attacks or throw attempts, as you can combo after on counter hit. Because you can airdash out of this move, it is a great mixup tool at your disposal. This can be mashed out of so it is best often used in sync with Eddie to ensure the opponent cannot punish you.
- Tied with 5P for Zato's fastest button
- Solid range for a jab
Most commonly used in stagger pressure or to mash out of gaps in the opponent's pressure. On hit you can either go into repeated 5P/2Ps or 6P when close enough, allowing you to meaty with 236P.
Gatling Options: 5P, 2P, 6P, 6K, 6H
- Solid low poke for close range
Can combo into 2D, granting a hard knockdown to set up okizeme. Also used in high/low mixups with Eddie as a low option.
Gatling Options: 6P, 6K, 6H, 5D, 2D
- Zato's prime poking normal
- Hurtbox extends before the hitbox becomes active
Fairly fast, covers good range. Can cancel 2S into 22H, summon Eddie, or do nothing and see how the opponent responds after. Take note that every characater, except Potemkin and Nagoriyuki, can jump out of 2S > 22H (Potemkin can Megafist out), so only cancel into 22H to condition players to jump or when you know they will respect you. 2S does have an extended hurtbox when used, so exercising caution when throwing out this move is important. This also allows it to be fairly easy to punish on whiff.
2S is also a cornerstone in Leap loop combos (-S- > 2S > 2H > ...), making it an essential combo filler piece with Eddie in play.
Gatling Options: 5H, 2H
- Vertically long range anti-air.
- Extends Zato's hurtbox so it can trade or lose to many moves when timed incorrectly.
- Incredible reward on counterhit
While it does not have any upper body invul like 6P, 2H is great at catching opponents above Zato, and has ridiculously good reward on counter hit, allowing you to do Leap loops anywhere on the screen, or go into j.D if hit high enough for a solo conversion. On normal hit, can combo into 22H for a soft knockdown, but can also be used as an ender to summon Eddie and go for oki. Also an integral combo filler piece in many of Zato's combos incorporating Eddie. Do note that 2H does extend Zato's hurtbox.
- Low sweep
- Causes hard knockdown on hit
- Essential tool to safely bring out Eddie and start your Okizeme
Connecting this attack while naked allows Zato to bring Eddie into play safely, as well as start okizeme with Eddie afterwards. If you can combo into this attack and Eddie is ready to be summoned, it is best to go into it. Also seen as a low option in Zato's high/low mixups with Eddie.
- 3 hit aerial attack with solid range
Quick and horizontally long ranged air attack. Great way to swat opponents out of the air from longer ranges while Zato is airborne.
Gatling Options: j.P
- Quick air to air and mixup tool
On air hit, can go into j.D > j.66 > j.H > 2S > ender. For mixups, it is used as a high option after 6H (6H > 66 > j.K), or to set up an F-Shiki/low mixup after Eddie Drill (-K- > j.K > j.D/land > 2K > 2D). Can also be used as a jump in, but j.S or j.H generally do that better.
Gatling Options: j.D
- Multi-purpose air normal
- Hits all around Zato, making it a great way to attack opponents at awkward positions
Very solid air normal that can be used for both air to ground and air to air situations.
Gatling Options: j.H
- Great air to ground
- Very large and active
While the hitbox does not hit all around Zato like j.S, it is an amazing jump in for air to ground situations just because of how large it is. A staple jump in attack.
- Aerial biting attack that quickly moves Zato forwards
- Can be used as an alternative airdash
- On grounded counterhit, causes stagger
Great way to check people in the air from far away. Used in a variety of setups for left/right or high/low mixups. Hitting aerial opponents with this move will launch them upwards, allowing Zato to combo off it if he's close to the ground - especially on Counterhit.
When combined with PRC, it can carry Zato across the screen very fast, which is very useful in matchups where he can have trouble approaching as easily, such as Axl.
6D or 4D
- Hard knockdown
- If Eddie is already summoned, can be converted into a meterless combo with moves like "Leap"
Great opportunity to summon Eddie afterwards. If you can't summon, you can go for a safejump with j.66 > j.S.
j.6D or j.4D
- Hard knockdown
- If Eddie is already summoned, can be converted off with moves like "Leap"
- Advantage depends on how close you are to the ground
- Solid anti air option
If close enough to the ground on grab, can be used to safely summon Eddie and start your okizeme.
Dash in any direction (Air only)
By inputting the same direction quickly twice while airborne or pressing the dash button while holding a direction, Zato will fly in the specified direction (e.g. 66 to fly forwards). If you dash directly up, Zato will fly in place. While flight is activated, Zato can be move around freely in 8 different directions and ends either when an attack is inputted during flight, Zato lands, or Zato has been flying for too long. Zato can cancel 6H and all air normals into flight on hit or block as long as he still has an air action available.
- Summon/Unsummon Eddie
- Integral move to playing Zato
- When summoning, Eddie becomes actionable on frame 21
Zato summons Eddie, which can then use all of his following attacks by releasing P, K, S or H, or by doing 236P/K/S/H, the latter input allowing you to cancel Eddie attacks into other attacks (e.g. 236P > 236S), but leaves Zato vulnerable for a short period of time.
Use this summon after a knockdown to set up your okizeme or if you want to summon Eddie in neutral without doing an attack immediately, so you can decide how to respond to what the opponent is doing after.
Note that Eddie becomes actionable before Zato does. This little gap allows you to move and input attacks for Eddie without having to worry about negative edge while still being able to act freely as Zato once the animation is over.
To unsummon Eddie, do 214H while Eddie is already summoned, allowing you to preserve Eddie's longevity and summon him again much faster.
]P[ when summoned or 236P
- ]P[ only works when Eddie is already summoned, whereas 236P can be done regardless if Eddie is summoned or not
- Quick and long ranged - primary Eddie attack to control ground space
- Uses 500 HP of the Eddie gauge for each attack (upwards to 1000 HP)
- Recovery values in [ ] refer to Zato's animation for 236P.
- 4 frame gap between the first and second attack on hit, 7f gap on block
Can be used to push your offense on grounded opponents from neutral. Also an essential move in Zato's pressure strings.
Note that there is a gap between the two hits. If you don't cover it, opponents will have the opportunity to kill Eddie for free. If Zato is actionable while this move is being performed you can cover the gap with moves like 2P/5P at close range and 2S/f.S at long range. You can also grab them between the two hits. When using 236P however, you will only be able to cover the gap with 2P/5P. If you are too far away for 2P/5P to hit, you will have to either cancel into another Eddie action or use 214S to move Eddie out of danger.
It's very important to identify whether or not your opponent tends to attack during the gap or not, as it can be a very effective way to extend your pressure due to it's low Eddie gauge cost.
You can use 236P after a blocked 5H to create a frametrap that summons in Eddie. If you have 50% tension, you can do 66PRC after the 236P to make both hits of Pierce a true blockstring, and set up a mixup afterwards.
"That's a lot"
]K[ when summoned or 236K
- ]K[ only works when Eddie is already summoned, whereas 236K can be done regardless if Eddie is summoned or not
- Uses 375 HP of Eddie gauge for each attack (upwards to 1500 HP)
- Staple okizeme and pressure tool
Eddie creates 4 lingering drills that, one after the other, go across the screen horizontally. Because of the attack's long duration, it's an effective tool to lock an opponent in blockstun, allowing Zato to close distance or create a variety of ambiguous mixups. In neutral it can be used to cover a lot of ground, denying your opponent space and allowing Zato to take it. This move also makes it very tricky for certain characters, such as I-no, to approach Zato.
Unsummoning during this move is also safer than usual, since the lingering drills will continue to cover the space in front of you during the unsummon recovery.
]S[ when summoned or 236S
- ]S[ only works when Eddie is already summoned, whereas 236S can be done regardless if Eddie is summoned or not
- Uses 1500 HP of Eddie gauge
- Recovery values in [ ] refer to Zato's animation for 236S.
- Devastating Anti air and combo tool
- Second hit causes hard knockdown
Anti air attack that drags the opponent back to the ground when blocked, allowing you to continue your offense. If the second hit hits, it will cause a hard knockdown, allowing you to dash up and continue the string with 2S > 2H > ... Very plus on block. Use this move to make your opponent think twice about jumping and airdashing. Do keep in mind that opponents can 6P to kill Eddie out of it if they don't get hit/block the first hit and you don't cover for Eddie.
Also a staple in Zato's higher damage combos, as Zato can loop into this move so long as he has enough Eddie gauge available. Example of the loop would be (corner) c.S > 2H > -S- > ...
While Eddie is off the ground, you can input any 236X Eddie move or 214H and the action will be "buffered" - causing Eddie to perform it the moment he lands. 236S/]S[ > 214H in particular is incredibly useful since Leap will cover the entire unsummon animation, even leaving Zato plus on block, allowing him to continue his pressure and summon again.
]H[ when summoned or 236H
- ]H[ only works when Eddie is already summoned, whereas 236H can be done regardless if Eddie is summoned or not
- Uses 20 HP of Eddie gauge each frame the move is active. Each hit from the attack phase uses 520HP (upwards to 1560 HP)
- Recovery values in [ ] refer to Zato's animation for 236H.
- Key part of Zato's defense with many applications
- Can guardpoint anything except throws (whiffs), Overdrives, burst, or RRC
Eddie enters an armored stance while very slowly advancing forwards. Almost any attack Eddie comes into contact with during this stance is nullified, making it an incredible defensive tool with many applications. After a set period of time spent in the armored stance, Eddie attacks.
You can use this move in response to predictable approaches or overly aggressive opponents. Examples include anti-airing blocked aerial attacks with 2H, usually to be followed up by a damaging Leap Combo, or taking advantage of blocked grounded attacks by using 623S or 2S > 214S > Leap. Taking advantage of blocked hits will often net you a counter hit, allowing you to do your most damaging combos.
Other applications include moving Eddie forwards and then activating "Oppose", allowing Zato to safely take space, or cancelling the first hit of 236P into "Oppose" to protect Eddie from harm if Zato isn't in range.
In most situations you want to avoid letting Eddie do the attack of this move since the only way you can cancel it is with 214S and letting it play out will result in an empty, red Eddie bar. The armored stance can be cancelled into any Eddie move as usual - even itself if you want to refresh the armor.
Note that Overdrives, Bursts and RRC cannot be armored. Opponents can also still grab you, so don't get too comfortable when Oppose is covering you.
- Very active grounded projectile
- Solo combo and blockstring ender
- Blockstring filler when Eddie is in play
- Soft knockdown on hit
Good move for controlling neutral. This move has a ton of active frames, which make it easy to meaty people on wakeup and can be very advantageous if it meaties on later active frames. Often cancelled into after a blocked 2S. This attack is also often used to cover a blocked Eddie attack from afar, allowing Eddie to continue his onslaught.
Cancelling this move with Drift PRC can also allow Zato to cover the ground while being able to react to what the opponent is doing, such as anti airing someone who jumped over the drill.
Break The Law
- Values in  refer to when 214[K] is fully held down
- Situational alternative movement tool that turns Zato invulnerable
- Often used to shorten the recovery of certain normals such as 2H
Zato sinks into the ground, becoming invincible as long as K is held down. The longer Zato spends invincible, the longer the move's recovery becomes once he resurfaces. Zato will resurface by either releasing K or by being forced out after a set period of time.
This move synergizes well with Eddie out, as you can continue to control him while Zato is safe from any danger. This becomes particularly useful during blockstrings in which the opponent is between Zato and Eddie, allowing Zato to cross up the opponent between the hits of "Pierce", creating a terrifying left/right mixup.
Other applications include cancelling normals such as 2H into this move. This allows Zato to bait bursts during a combo or to become actionable sooner when not held, as the total duration of this move is shorter than the active frames + recovery of some normals.
You can also PRC while Zato is inside the ground, often catching opponents by surprise.
- Command grab
- Animation is almost long enough to recover an empty Eddie gauge
- Leaves you +7
A command grab with more damage and range than Zatos regular throw, albeit with mediocre okizeme afterwards if midscreen. When it connects, Eddie is unsummoned and a long attack animation plays, giving the Eddie Gauge plenty of time to refill. With a full Eddie Gauge and 50% of tension, you can RRC it and follow up with a damaging combo afterwards.
Connecting this move close to the corner will position your opponent closer to you. This allows you to keep your turn with a meaty 2K, for example.
Mix this in your pressure to punish opponents respecting you too much.
- Reflect and Eddie-repositioning tool
- Reflects projectiles starting Frame 3
- Surprisingly active
- On aerial hit, causes hard knockdown
- On grounded counterhit, launches opponent and causes hard knockdown
Attack that covers the space in front of Zato - mostly vertically. Can reflect a variety of non-overdrive projectiles such as Sol's Gunflame or Ky's Stun Edge.
In addition, if Eddie is summoned and nearby while this move is performed, Eddie will swiftly dash forwards with a bit of invulnerability. This will cancel whatever Eddie is doing. If the opponent is within Eddie's dash range, Eddie will cross them up and stop dashing, making it a great way to sandwich the opponent between Zato and Eddie, allowing for the duo's scariest pressure.
Note that Eddies invulnerability only lasts for a short duration at the start of his dash - smart opponents will kill Eddie for free if you just throw him at them without much thought.
|Anji||Shitsu (Both butterfly and bird)|
|Faust||Love (Bag only)|
Chemical Love (Nullifies it)
|Ky Kiske||Stun Edge (Ground, Air)
Charged Stun Edge
j.D (Nullifies it)
|Leo Whitefang||Gravierte Wurde (S and H versions)|
|Millia Rage||Tandem Top (S and H version)|
|Nagoriyuki||Blood Rage activation (Nullifies it)|
|Ramlethal Valentine||Banjoneto Followup Explosion|
- Costs 50% tension
- Damage Super
- Hits pretty high
Zato creates a shadow projectile that swifly moves forward along the ground. Once it's under an opponent it will activate, dealing solid damage while also reaching very high.
Great for securing knockdowns before a wallbreak when you don't need to refill the Eddie Gauge with 632146S or for closing out rounds. Can also serve as a situational anti air due to how high the attack hits.
632146S (air OK)
- Costs 50% tension
- Utility Super
- Mediocre damage, but refills the Eddie gauge and allows you to continue your pressure
Zato launches Eddie in the form of a sword towards the opponent. If Eddie is already summoned he will track the opponent from his current position. If he isn't summoned, he will appear over Zato and track the opponent from there. On hit, block, or if the sword whiffed the opponent and a certain amount of time passes, Eddie will turn into a small black ball, falling onto the ground. After landing, Eddie will be in his normal form with a full Eddie gauge.
Use this super to continue your offense with Eddie, end a combo will a full Eddie gauge or to revive Eddie when you really can't wait for the gauge to refill.
|Combos||Very barebones at the moment, has some essentials to help get players started, but definitely can use more refinement.||4/10|
|Strategy||Nearly complete, just need matchup tips against every character.||18/20|
|Frame Data||Nearly complete, need full framedata for 236K/]K[ and supers, need attack level and risc gain values||45/50|
|To edit frame data, edit values in GGST/Zato-1/Data.|
Click [★] for character's full frame data