Android 18 is a relentless, okizeme-focused character. She is one of the few characters to have a built-in set of assists with 214X, which allows her to consistently extend pressure after soft and sliding knockdowns alike. She really likes to have neutral assists to help her get in, as her solo neutral is pretty average. Because of her built-in assist, she generally doesn't need lockdown assists to get her mixups. Her stagger pressure is also decent, allowing her to regain assists and steal turns by herself. Once she knocks you down, then things really start to turn to her favor. 214H~214H makes her pressure almost invisible and covers all techs, practically guaranteeing the next hit for her. Most of your meter usage will be towards that move.
This may be her ideal position, but it's not the only one she excels at. 18 is amazing with assists. Her neutral gets better, her okizeme gets more consistent, and her 22S becomes much safer to use on defense. Having two assists means she can spend one to get in, one to mix, and have 214H~214H ready to go off the knockdown. Let the blending begin.
Android 18's B assist is a great neutral assist with good hitstun and blockstun, and she also has a great lvl3 to DHC into for mixups. Her A assist is more situational but still very strong to have in your back pocket. She appreciates having an assist to get more consistent sliding knockdowns and get in easier, but she works just fine with one.
Android 18 is a surprisingly good Anchor for how bad people think her neutral is. Her Ki Blasts are pretty good and she has a beam-like move, giving her a decent projectile game. The only real fault she has is her air game which is normally covered by assists. Otherwise, she has good (albeit risky) defense with 22S and one of the best mixup lvl3 supers in the game.
Android 18 can get mixups with neutral assists, so those are typically the best choice for her. They also support her neutral (of course), which helps her get close and start pressuring your opponent. Most neutral assists will cover a 214S call, which either locks your opponent down until you can run up on them or autoconfirms the assist. She can use 214L to set up Kid Buu A for "real" mixups but she doesn't really need it.
Basic Gapless Blockstrings
- (2L) > 5LL > 2M > 5M > 5H > 214L > Assist
- (2L) > 5LL > 2M > 5M > 5H > Assist > 214M
Safe normals: 2L, 5L, 5LL, 5LLL, 5M (-6), 2S (+11), or 5S. 2H leaves 18 airborne.
- 5L (reflected) > slight delay 5M (5M jails in reflected strings if not delayed)
- 5L (reflected) > 5H (point blank only)
- 5L (reflected) > 5S (can be SD'd)
Android 18's antireflect options really aren't all that great. Usually you're better off returning to neutral than risking getting tagged by an M button.
Ground Support Attack (214M)
- ... > 214M, 2M
- ... > 214M, IAD j.ML
- ... > 214M, IAD ▷ 2L
- ... > 214M, IAD j.H (can frame trap if delayed)
- ... > 214M> SJ IAD j.MLL
Will need an assist to jail the opponent in blockstun, otherwise you're taking a risk throwing this out solo. Empty low can be fuzzy mashed. Pushes opponent away making this less effective midscreen.
Air Support Attack (j.214M)
- ... > 2H > delay j.214M , 66j.L
- ... > 2H > delay j.214M ▷ 2L
- ... > 2H > j.214M, 66j.M (Cross up)
- ... > 2H > j.214M, j.H/SD (Same side)
This is much riskier than doing its grounded counterpart, but still good for catching opponents sleeping. 2H adds landing recovery so it can be fuzzy guarded but it is extremely difficult. Doing j.214M immediately keeps 18's upwards momentum allowing her to cross up the opponent.
Heavy Support Attack (214H)
- ... 214H~214H, delay 2M
- ... 214H~214H, IAD j.X
- ... 214H~214H, delay 236L/DR
Usually done on a sliding knockdown, but can be used on very passive opponents in blockstrings. The blast 17 makes covers up the characters on screen making it near impossible to see, opponents are forced to spark or guess block. Normally IAD pressure is not a mixup, but 214H visually obscures everything you do. There's also a ridiculous array of options available to 18, making it very hard to predict what she's going to do.
18 has access to an unreactable command grab (236L) that she can use on knockdowns or can be ticked into off most buttons by delaying the 236L, this may require some practice to pull off consistently. Your only way to extend is with supers, so Dragon Rush is usually a better option if you don't have the meter to make it threatening. It's much easier to use 236M/H but they're slow to the point that most (if not all) players will jump out.
- ... > j.LLL > j.214L/M
Typical soft knockdown setup. You want to do this as close to the ground as possible and saving your air action means you can get a mixup if the opponent blocks 17.
- ... > j.LLL ▷ j.L (whiff) > j.214M > ... (midscreen)
- ... > j.LLL ▷ 214S > ... (midscreen alternate)
- ... > j.LLL > j.214H ▷ 214H (corner)
The dreaded 214H setup. Not all that useful midscreen because of how poor 17's tracking is so you'll have to improvise.
- 214M > ...
- IAD j.M > ...
- SJ IAD j.M > ...
Accel Dance lets you play all sorts of tricks with your opponent. It also pulls you out of the corner, letting you get crossups if you get greedy. Most air buttons after an IAD will also setup a tick throw with 236L, which can be extra unexpected.
Tips and Tricks
- Android 18 is great at stealing turns with 214M. Sneaking it into your blockstrings can keep opponents on their toes, and it doesn't push her out if it's reflected.
- 236S causes an explosion when the disc hits the ground that is very plus on block. Spacing yourself out in the corner can be highly rewarding if you know how to make the explosion connect.
- 22S is a frame 4 reversal. It's riskier than other 4-framers because it's a counter and not an invincible strike, but it's still good to use if you think your opponent will press a button after you block a vanish or a 6M.
Fighting Android 18
- The only way she can tick throw with 236L outside okizeme is after a microdash 5L or 2L. Past that point, 236L will whiff, forcing her to do 236M or 236H (which are very much reactable).
- 214S call is just Ki Blasts, you can reflect them away. The best way to avoid it is to jump. Even if you do end up reflecting it, you're going to be stuck reflecting all three Ki Blasts.
- 18 does not control the air very well, so jumping is usually a good idea. Her only real option is 236S which is relatively slow and telegraphed.
- 2S is plus on reflect. Make sure to punish it by Superdashing before it comes out instead of trying to reflect. This is harder to do than it sounds because 2S initially looks like 6M
- Android 18's 5L is a 6-frame button, but most characters can actually jump out whenever she's +2 because of how low to the ground it hits.