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GGXRD-R Zato-1 Portrait.png
Defense Modifier: x1.09

Guts Rating: 0
Weight: [100] Medium
Stun Resistance: 60
Prejump: 3F
Backdash Time 16F / Invul: 1-7F
Wakeup (Face Up/Down): 25F / 22F

Movement Options
Double Jump, 1 Airdash, Flight Mode, Dash Type: Run


Zato fills the role of Guilty Gear's puppet character archetype.

Paired with his shadow, Eddie, he dominates in neutral and possesses arguably the most overwhelming offense in the game. He manipulates the power of Eddie in many of his attacks, such as having him fight directly along side him to attack at the same time. When Eddie is summoned, you must utilize negative edge to coordinate them in such a way that they defend each other's recovery. In other words, Zato performs attacks with a press of a button while Eddie only attacks while the button is released. This alone can leave dealing with them on the other end of their offense to be frustrating, as their gapless pressure leave plenty of room for them to enforce mixups, although Zato's unique Eddie gauge that depletes during the shadows use forces him to eventually stop. The ability to control two characters is a nightmare for your opponents as Zato's pokes, drill specials, and flight paired with Eddie's pressure tools, anti-airs, and underground movement options are difficult to deal with when they are used as a team. Eddie can also take a hit for Zato, which while beneficial, means that you lose control over Eddie, so you will be left weakened with your only hope being flight and using drill summons to kill time for Eddie's recovery. Zato is a difficult character to get the hang of, but is a monster when you get used to controlling two characters as a coordinated team.

Zato's goal at the beginning of each match is to get the shadow out. He can achieve this goal by using his many ways to get a knockdown, his great pokes like f.S and 2S, and even summoning raw in neutral. His drill special leaves shadow puddles on the ground, which he can summon out of as well. Once Eddie is out, the next goal is to get the opponent blocking. After this Zato can create pressure and enforce mixups while the shadow keeps the opponent in blockstun, and can also acts as combo filler.

Strengths and Weaknesses[edit]

Strengths Weaknesses
  • Overwhelming offense when paired with Eddie. This includes, high/low/fuzzy guard mix-ups, command grabs, unblockables, and never-ending block stings limited only by his shadow gauge.
  • Has many reliable unblockable setups that do large amounts of damage. Each one can take out about 50% health meterlessly. They also lead you to end with full Eddie gauge.
  • Superior ground and air game with Eddie. Both Zato and Eddie can cover each other's recovery points and easily frustrate the opponent.
  • Only one, poor reversal without burst which costs 50% meter.
  • Very low health. Has 0 guts rating and poor defense modifier.
  • Without Eddie, Zato is very limited. Poor hurtboxes on normals and limited application use of specials without the shadow hurt his neutral game.

Unique Mechanics[edit]


Eddie is the name of Zato=1's puppet.

Eddie is controlled by the player, and can be used separately from Zato himself. Eddie is absolutely essential to Zato's game plan, and is basically half of the character.

Shadow Meter[edit]

Zato has a unique resource called Shadow Meter which is used to summon Eddie.

After Eddie has been hit, the Shadow Meter will be locked to its depleted state. After a brief period of time the Meter will replenish. Whenever Eddie is used, the Shadow Meter will constantly deplete.

Normal Moves[edit]

GGXRD Zato 5P.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
9 Mid 5 4 7 -1

Zato's fastest move in this game. Has good range for a 5p. Combos into sweep for a knockdown and oki. In very few situations, it can be used as an anti air such as against I-no's hover dash or Raven's airdash. Combos from Damned Fang in corner and set ups used with Eddie Drill Special.

GGXRD Zato 5K.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
12 Low 8 4 8 -2

A standing low with short good range. Used as combo filler. One of the 2 jump cancelable lows he has.

GGXRD Zato c.S.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
30 Mid 9 5 9 ±0

Zato's punish. It's even on block and can chain into lots of different moves, making this a deadly tool for Zato. Can combo into 2d or 22h for a knockdown.

GGXRD Zato f.S.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
20×4 Mid 7 3×4 20 -9

Once a good move, now not so much because of nerfs. Needs 50 to do a combo that causes knockdown on normal hit. This move has multiple hits so it is good against moves like Pote's Hammer Falls.

  • As of 2.10, gatlings into 6H

GGXRD Zato 5H.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
25×3 Mid 13 2,6,3 15 +1

Another move with many hits (3 hits). You can now special cancel the third hit. Needs proper spacing for a 22s/22h knockdown.

GGXRD Zato 2P.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
8 Mid 6 4 8 -2

Has good range. Can combo into a 2d for knockdown or at some ranges do a combo ending in 22h for a knockdown farther away from Zato. It hits out slightly farther than 5P but isn't as disjointed nor hits as fast.

GGXRD Zato 2K.png
Shadow Foot
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
18 Low 7 2 9 +3

Zato's best low mix up option. It is + and is perfect for setting up throws. Can do a combo into 22S for a knockdown if it's counter hit. Can crouch confirm into f.S>5H(3)>22H or into 5P>2D. Great use along with Eddie in tandem for certain setups such as Eddie -p- sandwich combos.

  • As of 2.10, gatlings into 5D

GGXRD Zato 2S.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
24 Mid 9 4 16 -6

Zato's main ground to ground poke. Nice range, but has somewhat lengthy start up and recovery. Can do a combo that ends in 22h for a knockdown far away from Zato if you either have Eddie out or if you get a counter hit. Good normal to use in tandem with Eddie.

GGXRD Zato 2H.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
50 Mid 11 6 19 -6

One of Zato's Anti Airs. Has a huge untechable time. On CH it basically knocks the other person down no matter what height they are at. It has many great uses in tandem with Eddie such as being a frame trap and is able to catch jumps outs when using it with Nobiru. One thing to note is that the hurtbox comes out before the hitbox so can be hit out of it during start up. However, it hits at a very good horizontal and vertical range for the type of normal it is and it is faster than 6P and has excellent benefits on hit.

GGXRD Zato j.P.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
13 High / Air 6 4 11 -

Basic air normal. Similar to jk but hits higher up.

GGXRD Zato j.K.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
18 High / Air 7 6 11 -

Good range. Your main mix up option when doing a shadow -K- or a shadow -S- in the corner This is the staple for Zato's amazing fuzzy guard. jK>jump cancel >jK/jS>jH or jK>jump cancel>jH or jK>2K/2d are some of your great mix up options starting from jK.

GGXRD Zato j.S.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
22 High / Air 7 12 12 -

Very good for IADs. Does have a cross up hit box and can be used for cross ups. Hits in fairly deep so it is used a lot to score knockdowns when doing j.S>jH>5/2P>2D. It is also another button that doesn't gattle into Dust so it is can also be used for Dead Man's Hand set ups. I.E jK>jK>jS ~ 214 -D- As of Rev 2.1, it is jump cancelable

GGXRD Zato j.H.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
33 High / Air 11 6 12 -

Similar to jk but not jump cancel able. Combo filler for the most part.

GGXRD Zato j.D.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
40 High / Air 11 4 19 -

This move is amazing. Very good Air to Air normal. Covers a good amount of space and is pretty disjointed. On regular hit, it pushes the opponent far away for you to summon Eddie in neutral. On CH it wallsticks near the corner and you can combo after it for good damage. Mid screen CH it will knockdown face up for good oki and setplay options.

GGXRD Zato 6P.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
22×2 Mid 13 4,4 12 -2

An Anti-Air for Zato. Has invincibility for the upper body frames 1-16. Can be good against Iad's but must be done a bit early because of start up. Hits twice. On ground hit can combo into 5cs 2d for a knockdown or 5h 22h for a knockdown farther away from Zato. Can be used as a situational footsies tool such as against Faust's f.S. It is also jump cancelable and leaves the opponent in a lot of block stun so you can cover Eddie when going in tandem when attacking.

GGXRD Zato 6K.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
30 High 23 5 14 -5

Overhead. Staggers on hit. Can't really do anything off of it without meter or if you have Eddie set up prior to using it. You can use either -K- or -P- to combo from it. If the opponent doesn't recover in time you can hit them with 5p and combo into knockdown. Note that it is not special cancelable so unless you have 25% tension or Eddie to cover, you are committed to it.

GGXRD Zato 6H.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
60 Mid 13 12 23 -16

The big arm. Has a pretty bad hit box due to the hurt box coming out before its hitbox. Can be used as an Anti air but situational. On CH it gives knockdown. The downsides are slow start up and very bad on block. Not used as much as 6p or 2h. Mostly used in tandem with Eddie to catch jump outs depending on the spacing but you're mostly better off doing either 2H or even jD.

GGXRD Zato 2D.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
20 Low 9 6 15 -7

Basic sweep. Jump/special cancelable and is slightly disjointed by the tip of the foot. Gives Zato knockdown and good oki options. Can use it after Damned Fang to combo on certain characters such as Johnny, Faust, Potemkin, Haehyun and Axl.

GGXRD Zato 5D.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
22 High 25 3 24 -13

Combo filler. Can be used after a shadow -K- to do massive amounts of damage or can link from Eddie -p- to converse Eddie meter and still keep damage up. Also has frames 1~51 Foot invulnerably. Can do very interesting combos with raw midscreen side Dust in tandem with Eddie due to the properties it has, so combos such as 5D>6>6H>236S>2H>214S>-S->2H, 214S>-S->2H>214S>-S->2H>236H work.

Universal Mechanics[edit]

Ground Throw[edit]
Ground Throw
GGXRD Zato GroundThrow.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
0,50 Ground Throw: 85750 1 - - +39

Normal throw. You are almost +40 off of it. Perfect for summoning. Can follow up in the corner with 2k 5fs 22s for more damage and summon.

Air Throw[edit]
Air Throw
GGXRD Zato AirThrow.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
0,60 Air Throw: 192500 1 - - -

Grants knockdown in the corner. Can summon or do meaty drill for pressure.

Dead Angle Attack[edit]
Dead Angle Attack
GGXRD Zato 2H.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
25 All 13 9 18 -13

Same animation as 2H. Can be low profiled very easily and can be baited just as easy. It can be good to get the other person off you and summon the shadow.

Blitz Shield Charge Attack[edit]
Blitz Attack
GGXRD-R Zato BlitzAttack.png
Version Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
Uncharged 50 Mid (15-48)+13 3 20 -2
Max Charge 50 Mid 50+13 3 20 +5
  • List what the move is used for
  • List interesting properties in bullet points like invul, floating opponents on CH, etc.

Follow the Help:Writing_Character_Pages guidelines

Special Moves[edit]

Invite Hell[edit]
Invite Hell
GGXRD Zato InviteHell.png
Version Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
S 40 Low 18 48 Total 44 0
H 40 Low 18 48 Total 44 0

The drills. Low hitting move. 22s hits closer to Zato than 22h. Both can be used for knockdown and meaty pressure. Each drill will also create a "puddle" of shadow which Eddie can be summoned from. This puddle can be destroyed if the opponent attacks it.

Break the Law[edit]
Break the Law
GGXRD Zato BreakTheLaw.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
- - 13 - Total 29(Maximum 169) -

Zato goes underground. A good defensive option if you YRC to decrease the recovery of it. With Eddie, you use this for different pressure mix ups and even in neutral so they have to deal with just the shadow.

Shadow Summon[edit]
Summon Eddie (Recall)
GGXRD Zato Summon.png
Version Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
Summon - - - - Total 38 -
Unsummon - - - - Total 33 -

The summon. The Staple of Zato. If you do 236P/K/S Eddie will come out and do an attack. If you do 236H Eddie will come out and do nothing. If 236P/K/S/H is done with the shadow out the shadow will be called back and regenerate the shadow gauge.

  • as of 2.10, unsummon doesn't take Eddie meter if you release P, K or S while unsummoning

Shadow Puddle Shadow Summon[edit]
Shadow Puddle Shadow Summon
GGXRD Zato PuddleSummon.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
- - - - Total 38 -

Summon from the puddle. The shadow will come out in the spot the drill was. No moves will be done straight from the summon.

Small Attack[edit]
Small Attack
Release P with Shadow
GGXRD Zato SmallAttack.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
25 All 7[18] 2 23
[Total 38]

This attack moves Eddie forward, allowing for more space control. It's great for when you have the opponent sandwiched and can be very strong to keep them in block stun. If you opponent is expecting a -k- then you can do a p 623s to catch them off guard.

Traversing Attack[edit]
Traversing Attack (Mawaru)
Release K with Shadow
GGXRD Zato TraversingAttack.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
20×3 All 14[25] 29(4 Hit) 66
[Total 38]

The buzz saw. The best to make your opponent be in block stun. It allows you to perform a fuzzy mix up and allows you to combo into 5d.

Anti-Air Attack[edit]
Anti-Air Attack (Nobiru)
Release S with Shadow
GGXRD Zato AntiAirAttack.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
50 Mid 9[20] 12 50
[Total 38]

Eddie's anti-air. Can be used to control space, as a launcher and combo-filler for air-combos, and has an OS with Damned Fang (catches attempts to jump out of command throw).

Shadow Puddle[edit]
Shadow Puddle
Release H with Shadow
GGXRD Zato ShadowPuddle.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
- - - - Total 41 -

The shadow goes underground for a small amount of time. Can be used to move the shadow forward and avoid attacks.

Drill Special[edit]
Drill Special
Release D with Shadow
GGXRD Zato DrillSpecial.png
Set Play Drill
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
34×3 Low / Air,Mid / Air×2 146 36(3 Hit) (Summon Vanishes) -

The shadow goes into the ground and later comes out with a very big invite to hell. Hits low and can be used in unblockables. Drains all of the shadow gauge so it is only used in combos.

Dead Man's Hand[edit]
Dead Man's Hand
63214D with Shadow
GGXRD Zato DeadMansHand.png
EVO winning command grab
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
0, 55 Ground Throw 30 - Summon Total 77 -

Eddie command grab. This move is very slow and drains a lot of shadow gauge. However, it has a couple of interesting properties that make it an excellent move to use. As long as you have the opponent in hitstun or blockstun, you can unsummon the shadow even when it is in recovery and gain Eddie meter back without losing usage of the shadow. You can use this in a bunch of set ups that leave you at advantage such as 5P>2K ~ 214-D- >2H. If the opponent doesn't jump out, they get hit with the command grab. If they jump out, they can get hit with the 2H and you can unsummon and gain full meter back.

Damned Fang[edit]
Damned Fang
GGXRD Zato DamnedFang.png
GGXRD Zato DamnedFang2.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
92 Ground Throw: 122500 6 - Whiff Total: 43F +63

Command grab. Best special move that doesn't involve the shadow. If it hits you are +63. Can combo in the corner.

Damned Fang has a very long animation, which serves two purposes:

  • Refilling the Eddie gauge if you unsummon.
  • Allowing you time to position Eddie to use -D-, fly with Zato, and set up an unblockable.

Drunkard Shade[edit]
Drunkard Shade
GGXRD Zato DrunkardShade.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
30 Mid 9 10 10 -6

Reflects some projectiles. Frames 1-18 throw invulnerably and reflects stuff frames 3-18. Wall bounces on counter hit.

Projectiles able to be reflected include:

  • Sol's Gunflame
  • Ky's Stun Edge S and H (Fortified versions cannot be reflected.)
  • May's beach ball
  • Venom's cue balls (Including QV charged balls.)
  • I-No's Antidepressant Scale
  • I-No's H Chemical Love
  • Elphelt's Berry Pine (Doesn't damage Elphelt.)
  • Leo's Graviert Wurde S and H
  • Raven's Needles
  • Baiken's Yashagatana

Shadow Gallery[edit]
Shadow Gallery
GGXRD Zato ShadowGallery.png
GGXRD Zato ShadowGallery2.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
40,25 All 7 After Landing 6(12)3 24+3 After Landing -31

Air special move. Mostly used as combo filler but can be used for mix up with YRC and RC. Second hit knocks down depending on spacing. If it's midscreen it will usually knockdown, in very rare cases it won't because of screen spacing. Near the corner it will wall splat for additional combos. Can also be used in conjunction with Eddie to bait burst and dead angles.

double jump
GGXRD Zato Flight.png
Zato has flight mode instead of double jump. He can briefly fly around the screen. This is helpful for escaping the corner and stalling time for Eddie to recover. Huge staple in Zato's mix up, allowing him to perform his fuzzy guard mix ups.


632146H [632146D]
GGXRD Zato Amorphous.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
72×2 [90×2] Mid 10+5 9(2 Hit) 28 -17

Zato's only real reversal. That being said it isn't that good. Slow start up and can easily be avoided. However it is actually kind of safe on block due to how far back it can push people. Be careful if you use it because if you get baited you will get hit. Shark is active when YRC'd. Strike invulnerable 1-12f.

  • Burst Overdrive increases damage to 90×2 and improves invulnerable frames [1-12f fully invulnerable, 13-20f throw invulnerable]

GGXRD Zato Executor.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
14×N All 8+5 Until Corner 0 After Landing -

Zato's air super. It can take someone corner to corner and gives knockdown. Perfect for getting a knockdown off of an air combo.

Great White[edit]
Great White
632146S with Shadow
GGXRD Zato GreatWhite.png
GGXRD Zato GreatWhite2.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
30×3 All 6 After Searching for Opponent 17 Total 22 -

The shark comes and hits the opponent. Can combo on hit. Also has uses to end the round with 50 tension left.

  • As of 2.10, consumes 50% Eddie gauge, and if Eddie gauge remains after the move, Eddie appears summoned. Also now attacks 3 times no matter how much Eddie gauge left.

Instant Kill[edit]

Guzmania Magnifica
in IK mode: 236236H
GGXRD Zato GuzmaniaMagnifica.png
GGXRD Zato GuzmaniaMagnifica2.png
GGXRD Zato GuzmaniaMagnifica3.png
Damage Guard Startup Active Recovery Frame Adv.
DESTROY All 9+21
12 23 -18
  • [ ] Indicates when match point for you, opponent in Hell Fire state, and you have 50% Tension
  • Uses the animation of the first hit of his 5H.
  • Can combo into it in a corner j41236S>RC>IK activation>IK in Hellfire state.


68% complete
Page Status Completion Score
Overview 16/24
Combos 4/10
Okizeme 0/10
Strategy 5/12
Frame Data 43/44

For a list of criteria for appraising character pages see this page.


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