Zato fills the role of Guilty Gear's puppet character archetype. Paired with Eddie - his shadow - Zato can dominate the neutral game and launch arguably the most overwhelming offense in the game. Zato attacks with the press of a button, while Eddie attacks with its release (using some of the Eddie Gauge in the process). Using this Negative Edge mechanic, the duo can cover for each other's recoveries and blind spots. Their coordinated pressure can continue for as long as the Eddie Gauge remains.
Zato's two-pronged onslaught of pokes, anti-airs, and unorthodox movement can prove nightmarish to face in the neutral game. Intentional or not, Zato can also sacrifice Eddie against the opponent's attack, effectively acting as a single hit of armor. While Eddie is recovering, Zato must stall for time via smart usage of his limited solo toolset.
When the match begins, Zato's goal is to summon Eddie while keeping his advantage. This involves a constant balancing act of risk/reward as summoning can also become the opponent's angle of attack. When successful, Zato gains access to consecutive & unreactable mixups, leaving opponents in a constant state of guessing for their life.
Learning Zato can be a challenging process in many ways. In return, he offers the unique experiences of a Guilty Gear-style puppet character, found in no other game.
|""Remember... My name is Zato-ONE!""|
|Lore:||By sacrificing his eyesight, he became host to the Forbidden Beast Eddie and gained the ability to fight with his shadow. Zato was the rightful leader of the Assassin's Guild until his fall from grace, brought about by his former lover Millia Rage.|
|Zato-1 is a high-skill puppet character with a plethora of offensive options.|
Eddie is the name of Zato's puppet. May be referred to as "Little Eddie" or "Shadow" by players of older Guilty Gear iterations.
Once summoned, Eddie is controlled independently and simultaneously alongside Zato. Zato's game plan is incomplete without Eddie, and each can be thought of as half the character. Players must very carefully manage the usage of Eddie at all times; failure to do so will leave Zato highly vulnerable.
Eddie Gauge is a resource unique to Zato. When Eddie is summoned, the Eddie Gauge will gradually deplete. Attacks using Eddie will deplete this gauge; the amount depending on the type of move used. If Eddie is hit by the opponent, the gauge will be locked, turn red, and slowly regenerate from 0% - during which Eddie cannot be re-summoned until the gauge completely refills. If he is recalled while already summoned, the gauge turns white & regenerates rapidly, and can be re-summoned at any point.
Zato's fastest normal. Has good range for a 5P, and is commonly seen comboing into 2D for knockdown and okizeme.
Can situationally be used as an anti-air - for example, against I-no's hover dash or Raven's airdash.
5P is a fairly safe roundstart opener that can counter very specific roundstart options by the opponent, such as Johnny's Coin.
Standing low with decent range. One of the 2 jump cancel-able lows Zato has, alongside 2D.
While 2K has 1f faster startup, 5K is often used as the empty jump low option during flight mixups.
Primarily a combo/blockstring filler, and occasionally used for punishes.
Can cancel into 2D (or somewhat situationally, 5H > 22S/22H) for a knockdown.
Also used to continue combos against airborne opponents in hitstun (most commonly from meaty 22S, counterhit Nobiru, corner counterhit 2H, and corner counterhit j.D).
Primarily a combo/blockstring tool.
Can gatling into the next normal after any of its 4 hits, allowing for modular spacing at which to end your combos and blockstrings.
If hit close to the opponent, can be crouch confirmed for a knockdown (fS > 5H > 22H). Using RRC is necessary against most standing characters (fS > 2S > 22H).
Being a multi-hit normal, fS can be very effective against moves with armor (most notably, Potemkin's Hammer Fall).
- added As of Ver.2.10, can gatling into 6H.
Another move with multiple (3) hits. Unlike in XX, the 3rd hit can be special cancelled.
Needs proper spacing for a 22S/22H knockdown. Without running momentum, certain gatlings into 5H will leave a gap and fail to combo.
An alternative poke to 5P. Likewise, 2P can combo into 2D for knockdown.
Has some unique use cases apart from 5P due to the lower positioning of the hitbox.
Candidate for Zato's best normal. 2K is one of his only plus-on-block normals alongside 5H, and can be used to begin strike/throw mindgames.
2K > 5P creates a 2f gap frametrap, and can usually knock down afterwards via 2D.
On normal hit, can crouch confirm into f.S > 5H > 22H or be linked to 5P > 2D.
On counterhit, can be linked to 5P > 2D, or be cancelled into 22S for a knockdown.
- added As of Ver.2.10, gatlings into 5D.
Zato's ground-to-ground poke normal. Decent range, but suffers from a lengthy recovery. Additionally, 2S's (rather large) hurtbox appears prior to its hitbox, leaving Zato prone to all sorts of whiffpunishes. (Exhibit A)
Given the above downsides, this move is sometimes Roman Cancelled as an OS.
- If 2S whiffs, a YRC is produced and cuts short its lengthy recovery.
- If 2S lands, a RRC is produced and allows for hitconfirming into 22H, run up 2D, and so on.
On counterhit, 2S can be cancelled into 22H for a successful combo as long as the opponent is in range of the drill.
Primarily used as a pressure tool (frametraps into Summon > Nobiru) and as a preemptive anti-air.
Counterhit 2H guarantees a knockdown. Works well in tandem with Eddie as a frametrap tool, and can catch jump outs in the corner.
Similarly to 2S, 2H's hurtbox appears before its hitbox; take caution when using it as an anti-air. However, unlike 6P, it covers a much larger area, has 2 frames faster startup, and knocks down on counterhit.
Also similarly to 2S, 2H is often YRC'd in order to prevent it from being whiffpunished.
Similar to j.K but hits higher up. Useful for capitalizing off of awkward air-to-air j.K hits, as it will gatling into j.D for a decent combo.
Covers a decent range. Begins Zato's F-Shiki Mawaru mixups using its jump-cancellable property.
Can gatling into j.P.
Covers a unique range. The hitbox reaches well below Zato, but also extends way upwards after a few frames.
Like j.K, j.S can begin Zato's F-Shiki Mawaru mixups thanks to the newly added jump-cancellable property of Patch 2.10.
Good normal to use after IADs - can knockdown standing opponents via IAD > j.S > j.H > 5P > 2D.
j.S hits slightly behind Zato and can therefore be used to crossup the opponent in niche situations.
- added As of Ver.2.10, can be jump-cancelled.
Primarily a combo filler. Not jump-cancellable.
Most frequently seen being used in Zato's BnB air combo (... > j.K/j.S > j.H > j.D).
Amazing air-to-air normal. j.D covers a huge amount of space and is especially useful against characters with strong aerial approaches such as Chipp and Millia.
On regular hit, buys enough time for Zato to run forwards and summon Eddie.
On counterhit, a knockdown is guaranteed as long as the opponent does not hit the wall. If the opponent does hit the wall, a wallbounce will occur and consequently may be given enough time to airtech.
Sees very common use as a combo ender.
One of Zato's primary anti-airs. Has upper body invulnerability on frames 1-16.
6P is a 2-hit move, and its upper body invulnerability is lost by the time the second hit is active.
Can very situationally be used to punish long-ranged pokes such as Faust's f.S.
Similarly to c.S, 6P can be used to continue combos against airborne opponents in hitstun.
Overhead normal. Staggers on hit.
Against experienced players, 6K is mostly unreliable as a mixup option due to its relatively lengthy startup and should be used sparingly - especially if Eddie is not summoned.
On hit, should you be willing to spend meter, RRC > Damned Fang or 5D6 are excellent options to stall for Eddie gauge recovery.
Unlike in XX, 6K is not special cancelable.
The big arm. Has a deceptively small hitbox which follows only the hand, rather than the entire arm.
6H's hurtbox covers a third of the entire screen, is exceptionally unsafe on block, and has a somewhat lengthy startup.
The move does reach quite far and knocks down on counterhit, but usage is advised to be kept to a minimum due to its risks.
Very niche use cases exist by exploiting its massive hurtbox (e.g. causing Faust's Love (bomb bag) to explode in range of himself).
- added As of Ver.2.10, horizontal knockback on hit increased & horizontal knockback on counterhit increased slightly.
Zato's most stable knockdown option from normals such as 5P. Very frequently cancelled into Summon (236H) on hit in order to prepare Eddie mixups/pressure.
Highest damage option from a low mixup; in the corner, can lead to the following combo if Eddie is summoned: -S- > j.HD > -S- > Shadow Gallery > ...
2D > Break the Law is notably a Burst-safe point, as Zato will be fully underground by the time the opponent's Burst is active. K must be held for a very short duration for this to be the case. Example
Note that while 2D is a stable knockdown option for Zato standards, its somewhat poor reach can sometimes cause even very simple gatlings such as c.S > 2D, or heaven forbid, 5P > 2D, to drop.
The universal overhead.
Uniquely to Zato, 5D is commonly used as a corner combo extender with the help of Eddie - e.g. (2K > -P- > 5D6), (-K- > 5D6), (5P > c.S > -P- > 5D6).
Has foot invulnerability on frames 1~51, and Zato is treated as airborne for the duration. This can lead to highly specific counterplay against Potemkin's Slide Head (Example).
Provides some interesting but niche combo applications midscreen when used alongside Eddie. (Example 1, Example 2)
Standard universal ground throw.
Can't be combo'd off of without Eddie, but provides enough time to set up Mawaru pressure midscreen after a short forward run.
Can OTG via Throw > 66 > 2K > f.S to finish off near-death opponents.
Frame advantage for Zato decreases the higher up the air throw occurs, as well as the opponent being flung further away.
In most cases, Zato's air throw unfortunately does not provide him with as much time as he'd like for proper setups afterwards.
That being said, air throw plays a huge role as a counter to aerial approaches due to Zato's limited anti-air options when Eddie isn't summoned.
Dead Angle Attack
Same animation as 2H. Slightly slower startup than your average Dead Angle Attack.
Note that this DAA can be low profiled, but also reaches quite far diagonally upwards.
Knocks down on counterhit only.
Zato's single most important neutral tool.
22S summons a drill close to Zato, while 22H summons it further away. Differences between the two versions end here; both drills must be blocked low.
Drills can be used to combo into a knockdown (mainly via 5H > 22S/22H and CH 2S > 22H), as well as be set up meaty for followup pressure.
Each drill creates a "puddle" of shadow which Eddie can be summoned from via 214H, albeit costing a small amount of Eddie gauge. Puddles are destroyed when attacked by the opponent.
Drills cannot be YRC'd in the conventional sense of YRCing a projectile. Attempting to Drill > YRC will only leave behind a puddle, which - as a side note - has merit on its own despite the meter cost.
Break the Law
Zato dips underground, becoming fully invulnerable on frame 13.
Holding the K button extends the time spent underground. Take caution as the move's recovery will increase alongside the duration of the hold.
A strong neutral option to consider if Eddie is summoned and you predict the enemy to commit to an approach.
Generally speaking, avoid using this in neutral for extended durations if Eddie is not summoned, as its recovery is fairly easily punishable without Eddie around to protect yourself.
Used frequently as a cancel from 2D in order to create a burst-safe point. K must be held for a very small duration for this to be the case. Example
Break the Law can be YRC'd out of, significantly reducing its recovery.
Summon Eddie (Recall)
Inputting 236P/236K/236S will summon Eddie and have it immediately perform the respective button's attack. Inputting 236H will simply summon with no followup.
If 236P/236K/236S/236H is performed while Eddie is summoned, it will be unsummoned.
Be advised that Zato is in counterhit state for the entire duration of this move, and is especially vulnerable to IADs/other approaches during unsummon.
- added As of Ver.2.10, unsummon no longer depletes Eddie meter if the P, K, or S buttons are released while unsummoning.
Shadow Puddle Eddie Summon
Summons Eddie from the puddle's location. Consumes a small amount of Eddie Gauge to preform.
Unlike a regular Summon, using different buttons such as 214P will not result in a summon followed by an attack - for that matter, it will not result in a summon, period.
If no puddles are present, 214H will simply result in a regular Summon. This will not consume the initial amount of Eddie Gauge that a Puddle Summon normally costs.
Small Attack (Shou)
Release P with Shadow
Shou! A deceptively far-reaching poke that advances Eddie slightly forwards. Consumes approx. 12% Eddie Gauge on use.
-P- is an exceptionally useful multi-purpose tool. Sees usage in combos, hitconfirms, blockstrings, pokes, frametraps, tick throws - just about anything you can imagine.
Many combos involving Mawaru/-K- can be substituted with -P- in order to conserve Eddie Gauge. Differences in damage are often negligible.
Traversing Attack (Mawaru)
Release K with Shadow
Mawaru! The buzzsaw. Consumes approx. 29% Eddie Gauge on use.
When blocked, locks the opponent in enough blockstun to set up Zato's signature F-Shiki Buzzsaw mixup. Details
Mostly used as a pressure tool and a combo extender. Raw usage in neutral is typically not recommended, as it considerably expands Eddie's hurtbox forwards.
Anti-air Attack (Nobiru)
Release S with Shadow
Nobiru! Eddie's anti-air. Consumes approx. 20% of Eddie Gauge.
Possibly the single strongest anti-air move in the game in a vacuum. Covers an incredible amount of vertical space.
Aside from anti-air purposes, -S- can also be used as a frametrap; 5H/2H > -S- has a 2f gap, and has massive reward on counterhit. Example
Used in an incredibly easy Option Select - inputting 623S (tap S) while Eddie is summoned and on top of the opponent. If the opponent stays blocking, they will get command grabbed. If they jump, Nobiru will catch it.
Shadow Dive (Moguru)
Release H with Shadow
Moguru! Eddie dips underground for a set period of time while advancing forwards. Consumes approx. 11% of Eddie Gauge.
Full Invulnerability begins on frame 1. Offers very strong maneuverability around opponents' projectiles and pokes.
Eddie's movement speed during -H- is slightly faster than its walk speed, making it useful after certain knockdown situations for setting up sandwich pressure.
Release D with Shadow
Chou Doriru! Eddie turns into a land mine(?). After a set period of time, it transforms into a very big Invite Hell. Consumes 100% of Eddie Gauge.
The first hit must be blocked low, and is used to perform Zato's unblockable. Usage of this move for anything other than unblockables is highly inadvisable.
Unblockable Setup Example
- When the unblockable is performed correctly (Drill and jump normal hit on the same frame), the Drill is registered before the jump normal.
- Thusly, Low Blitz is an effective counter to Zato's unblockable. However, Zato can slightly delay -D- in order to connect the overhead first, effectively forcing a 50/50 between High and Low Blitz.
Dead Man's Hand
214D with Shadow
- GXRD Zato DeadMansHand hitbox.png
Eddie's command grab.
Very slow startup, drains a huge chunk of Eddie Gauge, has horrible combo proration, and loses both the corner and the knockdown (unless 50 meter is spent on Executor).
Has niche use cases in tandem with Zato in order to make escaping more difficult, but still remains suffer from exceptionally poor reward. Example
However, this move is useful for an entirely different application - Unsummoning while this move is ongoing allows Eddie to be Recalled, even if it completely depletes the Eddie Gauge. This is not the case with any other Eddie move, and is a property unique to Dead Man's Hand.
DMH Unsummon Example
- added As of Ver.2.10, forward movement faster at the start, slower during active frames. Lower hurtbox on start and active frames decreased.
Command grab. Massive frame advantage of +62, buying enough time to set up Buzzsaw mixups. Can be combo'd into 5P and 2K (and situationally, 2D) in the corner.
Damned Fang has a very long animation, which serves two purposes:
- Refilling the Eddie Gauge, should it not be full.
- Positioning Eddie to use -D- and set up an unblockable. Example
Reflects specific projectiles. Throw Invulnerability on frames 1-18, and reflects projectiles on frames 3-18. Wall bounces on counterhit if close enough to the screen's edge.
Drunkard Shade can reflect the following projectiles:
- Sol: Gunflame (236P)
- Ky: Stun Edge (236S/236H), Air Stun Edge (j.236S/j.236H) [Fortified Stun Edge cannot be reflected.]
- May: Don't Miss It! (214P/214K) [Beachball]
- Millia: Tandem Top (236S/236H)
- Venom: Ball Hit [Includes QV charged balls]
- I-No: Antidepressant Scale (214P), Chemical Love (214K/214S)
- Leo: Graviert Wurde (6S/6H)
- Haehyun: Tuning Ball (236S/236H)
- Raven: Schmerz Berg (236P), Gebrechlich Licht (j.236P/j.236K) [Needles]
- Baiken: Yashagatana
added As of Ver.2.10, horizontal knock back increased & vertical knock back reduced.
Air-only 2-hit special move. Mostly a combo tool.
Second hit knocks down midscreen. If the opponent hits the corner, they will wallsplat and can usually be combo'd further (depending on the travel distance prior to the wallsplat).
Can also be used in tandem with Eddie to bait responses such as Burst and Dead Angle Attacks. Example
Note that Zato is vulnerable to throws for the entire duration of this move, and can be ground/air thrown at any point of time. Example
Tapping up while in the air results in Flight, rather than a Double Jump. Zato can somewhat freely maneuver in the air for a brief duration.
Flight enables and is essential for Zato's Buzzsaw F-Shiki mixup.
Also sees use in baiting anti-airs and stalling time for Eddie Gauge to replenish.
Zato's one and only reversal attack, albeit not a very good one. Strike invulnerability runs out 3 frames before active frames, though hitting Zato does not remove Amorphous.
Has slow startup frames, a blind spot directly in front of Zato, and has 0 throw invulnerability. However, due to its rather large amount of pushback, punishing this super on block can be very difficult.
Note: Amorphous can be YRC'd.
- Burst Overdrive increases damage to 90×2 and improves the invulnerability. [1-12f fully invulnerable, 13-20f throw invulnerable]
Air-only super. Combo tool only. (Unless...)
Can carry opponents from corner to corner, dealing more damage the longer it travels. Guarantees a knockdown.
Using this super at an insufficient height may lead to disaster. Caution advised.
632146S with Shadow
Eddie transformed into a large shark and dives underground. It then traverses towards the opponent and leaps into the air when in horizontal proximity. Repeats for a total of 3 reps.
Cannot be easily airteched on hit. In many cases, somehow manages to deal worse damage than meterless variants of combos that involve Greate White.
Potentially has some very niche uses as a method of closing rounds against opponents with very low health, and works well in tandem with Break the Law. But really, just spend that meter elsewhere.
added The following changes have been made to Greate White as of Ver.2.10:
- Now consumes 50% of total Eddie Gauge
- Attacks 3 times regardless of the amount of Eddie Gauge available at the time of activation.
- If usage of Greate White does not entirely deplete the Eddie Gauge, Eddie remains summoned after the super's completion.
in IK mode: 236236H
- [ ] applies when it is match point, your opponent is in Hell Fire state, and you have 50%+ Tension.
- Uses the animation of 5H.
- Can be combo'd into through various routes during Hellfire. (-K- > IK Activate > IK), (Damned Fang > IK Activate > IK), (Dead Man's Hand > IK Activate > IK), (Corner Shadow Gallery > RRC > IK Activate > IK), ...
|To edit frame data, edit values in GGXRD-R2/Zato-1/Data.|
- Answer [★]
- Axl Low [★]
- Baiken [★]
- Bedman [★]
- Chipp Zanuff [★]
- Dizzy [★]
- Elphelt Valentine [★]
- Faust [★]
- I-No [★]
- Jack-O' [★]
- Jam Kuradoberi [★]
- Johnny [★]
- Kum Haehyun [★]
- Ky Kiske [★]
- Leo Whitefang [★]
- May [★]
- Millia Rage [★]
- Potemkin [★]
- Ramlethal Valentine [★]
- Raven [★]
- Sin Kiske [★]
- Slayer [★]
- Sol Badguy [★]
- Venom [★]
- Zato-1 [★]
Click [★] for character's full frame data