GGXRD-R2/Johnny/Strategy

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Learning Johnny[edit]

  1. Familiarize yourself with his normals, specials, and basic mechanics (Mist Stance, Levels, Baccus Sigh) at Johnny Overview
  2. Practice mist cancelling until you can do it naturally
  3. Learn his basic combos and basic level-up game flow
  4. Practice applying pressure using mist cancel and his various tools
  5. Familiarize yourself with his basic meter options
  6. Fight the CPU to confirm you can put the previous steps together and know how to confirm hits
  7. Play real matches, and keep practicing!


On Offense: Identify what your problems are. Are opponents jumping out? Are they hitting you? Are you getting pushed out? Figure out where you need to adjust, and re-apply in matches. Practice utilizing resources to maintain pressure.

On Defense: Understand universal defensive mechanics and utilize them as best you can. Ask yourself whether you are spending too much or too few resources on defense.

At Neutral: Focus on winning the ground game. Avoid relying on air approaches unless you feel there are no other answers. Identify problematic pokes and evaluate. Reflect on your movement: Are you dashing too much/too little? Are you giving ground too easily?

When in doubt, consult Training Mode and Video footage of other Johnny players.

General Tactics[edit]

Blockstrings[edit]

Tips and Tricks[edit]

Mist Cancel[edit]

Essential Johnny technique used to drastically reduce the recovery on many of Johnny's pokes.

Observe: 5H on block is -16, punishable by many characters. When Mist Canceled, it becomes +5. Better than safe, it's advantage!

How to Mist Cancel

  1. Do a move that is special cancelable.
  2. Special cancel in to a Mist Finer.
  3. Hold button to stay in Mist Stance.
  4. While holding button, press H to Stance Cancel (Note: Holding the button when mist cancelling is not mandatory. If H is inputted during the window of mist stance startup, it will cancel at the first possible frame. However, if H is not inputted during that window, the actual Mist Finer will come out. While this technique makes it easier to perform the fastest possible mist cancelling, it is much easier to make a mistake. Thus, it is recommended to hold the button unless you have a good grasp of the timing and have good execution.)
   Example: 5H>214[P/K/S]~HS

The button you choose to use for Mist Cancelling can be P, K, or S, but you should ideally choose the version you hold based on hitconfirm situations. For example, at Level 1, mist cancelling ground strings with K is very important, since it is the only mist finer that will combo on hit from many of Johnny's long pokes. However at Level 2, it is often preferred to hold S while midscreen, in order to confirm into Low Mist Finer. Meanwhile in the corner at Level 2, K becomes the dominate button in order to go into Mid. Holding P is very useful at any level when using a poke as an anti-jump or anti-air, such as 5H, 2H, etc. Near the corner, using P in order to go into a delayed Mist Finer High after blocking is also very viable. From 2H, P, K, and S are all viable depending on level, based around which way you think they may be hit or block 2H.

Mist Cancel Frame Advantage Chart[edit]

Shows the frame advantage for each attack level assuming fastest possible mist cancel by level.

Ground Mist Cancel total frames: LV1: 13(9F+4F). LV2: 10(6F+4F). LV3: 8(4F+4F)

Attack Level Normals MC Level 1 MC Level 2 MC Level 3
Level 0 2P, 2K -4 -1 +1
Level 1 5P, 5K -2 +1 +3
Level 2 c.S, 2S, 6P +0 +3 +5
Level 3 f.S, 2D +3 +6 +8
Level 4 5H, 6H +5 +8 +10

Air Mist Cancel total frames: LV1: 12(8F+4F). LV2: 10(6F+4F). LV3: 8(4F+4F)

Attack Level Normals MC Level 1 MC Level 2 MC Level 3
Level 0 j.P -3 -1 +1
Level 1 j.K -1 +1 +3
Level 2 j.S, j.H, j.D +1 +3 +5
Level 3 - +4 +6 +8
Level 4 2H +6 +8 +10

How Do I Practice Mist Cancels?[edit]

The following strings are recommended to practice to get the hang of practical Mist Cancels. They are all useful in real matches, and are listed at the lowest level it is possible to perform them.

Level 1[edit]

5H mc 5K

counterhit 5H mc dash 5K

2H mc jP

Level 2[edit]

5H mc f.S

6H mc f.S 6H (crouching only)

2D mc 5K

2H mc jK

2H mc airdash

2H mc jD (close range)

Level 3[edit]

5H mc 5H

6H mc 5H

2D mc f.S

f.S mc f.S

corner throw jD mc jS jump cancel jD mc jD Zweihander (623 K)

FD Dash[edit]

FD Dash, also called Wave Dashing by some, refers to Johnny's ability to cancel his dash recovery into FD in order to chain successive dashes together faster than normal. On the 13th frame of Johnny's forward dash, he can cancel the recovery of his dash into anything, except additional ground movement / throw. Because this technique uses FD, it temporarily reduces Johnny's tension gain. As a result, using this technique is somewhat of a playstyle preference, and should definitely be avoided in mid-combo if it is not mandatory.


An example of a single dash into a FD-cancel: 66[PK]4

Punch and Kick are not need for the FD. You can use any combination of buttons that will produce a FD.

A FD-dash into a dash (double hop): 66[PK]4646

N FD-dashes: 66[PK]{4646}xN

there's an extra '4', inbetween each additional dash past the first, that you don't need. But for most, it acts like a mental-metronome and helps keep a steady tempo.

Coin into a double hop: Stuff > 236[H~P], 664646

MistCancel into a double hop: Stuff >214[P]~[H], 664646

Zweihander YRC[edit]

Zwei YRC is a powerful mixup tool. The basic use is to cancel the move with YRC just before the opponent blocks the projectile half of Zweihander, and from there you either do an airdash into an overhead attack or land into a low attack. There are two versions of Zwei: "air Zwei" is input as j623 K (so, in the air), and "transport Zwei" is 623 K > K (starting from the ground).

Air Zwei YRC is rather lenient, but because the whole move starts up rather slower than Transport Zwei, you need a lot of space to do it safely without risking an airgrab. Generally off a corner knockdown you can do this by simply jumping.* You can also use it as a hard callout for attacks that move forward into you, or to bait throws with forward dash > jump Zwei YRC.

(*In Rev1, superjumping and doing Air Zwei YRC would put you out of range of any threat of reversal super or reversal into RRC to escape your mixup. In Rev2 the blockstun on Zwei's projectile is reduced, so you must be lower to the ground to guarantee a tight mixup after.)

Transport Zwei YRC has much stricter timing in order to get a proper mixup. The idea is to YRC at just the right time to preserve your air momentum from the actual transport special. If you YRC too early, the projectile won't come out, and if you YRC too late, you will float upwards from the YRC and you'll have to adjust somehow. You must also time the Zwei projectile itself so that you are low enough in the air after the YRC to hit the opponent after an airdash, which can be very difficult on characters that are small while crouching (such as Faust, or May).

The proper timing can be seen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vWl7uUNrSlI

To input Transport Zwei YRC properly, players have used the following methods:

  • input 623 K > K ~ PSH quickly (hitting K with one finger and P S H with three other digits. works best on stick)
  • input 623 K > K > KSH or PKS (essentially double-tapping K. needs precision to get it reliably.)
  • using a macro button: the P+K+S macro will let you hit K, release, then tap the macro button to get the YRC. Be careful, as if K is still held down, the P+K+S macro will just register as P+S

The other macro button you can use is the instant kill macro (P+K+S+H). This has the advantage of not requiring K to be released, since if K is held the IK macro registers as P+S+H. (It has the disadvantage of having a button on your stick that can potentially lose the round if you accidentally press it.)

As for the mixup afterwards, the somewhat-universal overhead option is airdash jKPK. jKPS will work on most reasonable characters but whiff on small crouchers like Millia or May. (Note that if the opponent blocks the Zwei standing, they'll be locked in a standing block animation even if they input low block, so you can go for airdash jKPD, but a player that knows this will probably block crouching.) Be wary of spending too many resources in the followup combo unless it kills, because the damage will be pretty scaled by the jKPK opener and you won't build much meter because you opened with a YRC.

For the low option, simply land and do 2K (slightly faster) or 2D (more payoff) into a standard combo.

If your opponent fails to block the Zweihander, you can still continue a combo off airdash by chaining into jD (ie. airdash jKPD, or jKSD if you react in time), or you can land and set up a better combo (Such as 6H > Coin, 6H > level 2 K mist finer, or 6H > mist cancel > far S > 2H etc. For a burst-proof starter, you can combo immediately into Coin or close S while holding back, depending on whether you need level or not).


Countermeasures to Transport Zwei

note: This is written for the Rev2 version, and may need to be updated when the Rev2.1 patch comes to consoles.

Transport Zwei doesn't have to be used only after a knockdown, but when you input it at neutral or in a blockstring, there are certain options the opponent has to counter it. Still, it grants a very threatening mixup and if the opponent can't react every time, it can win you the game. It can also counter certain low-profile options, such as Ky's slide and Millia's roll, that otherwise would go under your far pokes.

If the opponent...

-Jumps to block Zwei: they get out of the high/low mixup, but you can mash 5P on their block to burn their meter (if they don't continue to Faultless Defend, you'll break their air guard with your ground move) If the opponent jumps forward to block the Zwei, you may connect with the kick part, and your YRC will turn into a RRC - or, if you don't have 50% meter, you'll simply do an unsafe-on-block Zweihander.

-Uses Blitz Shield to counter the projectile: this will Reject you, though you can work in an occasional Transport > YRC (with no projectile) to bait this for huge payoff (counterhit 2D starter!). Even if they do reject you, you'll be in the air so their payoff won't be huge (unless they have the advantage at neutral, ie. they're Chipp or Millia)

-Uses Dead Angle Attack (a.k.a. guard cancel) after blocking: this can work, though on some characters your airdash can go over their guard cancel, and on slow guard cancels you may be able to safely whiff 2K (or even jK) and then block.

-Attempts a reversal, such as Sol's Volcanic Viper: As long as you reach the YRC window before their move connects with you, you should be able to see their animation during the YRC pause and react with FD in the air, so you can be safe and possibly punish.

-Air throws the Transport: This is the most reliable countermeasure - if the opponent can react in time and do the tricky input. To avoid this, try to be less predictable with Zweihander and try to do it from closer to the opponent, so that it's harder for them to react.

Aside from these options, against a Transport done when the opponent isn't forced to block, the opponent can use preemptive anti-air options like neutral jump > air buttons, or forward-extended antiairs (best example is Ky 2H) that would hit Transport before you can get above the opponent to drop the projectile on them.

Fighting Johnny[edit]

Navigation[edit]


Guilty Gear Xrd REV 2e
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