- Hold either left or right to walk forward/backward. This is the slowest form of movement, but also presents the least risk.
- To run forward, press 656 in quick succession when on the ground and keep holding 6 to continue running forward. When you stop running your character will slide to a halt. You can block during this sliding animation, or you can cancel the sliding by canceling the run into attacks and jumps.
- To perform a backstep, press 454 quickly. All backsteps have 6 frames of invincibility at the start (Aigis in Origa mode has 7), so they are useful for escaping enemy attacks if timed correctly. Backsteps can not be canceled into anything; you must wait for the entire backstep to finish before performing any further action. This means that while backsteps can evade attacks, they can be baited if the opponent performs a slow, long-reaching attack, or if the opponent anticipates the backstep and moves forward to hit you out of the backstep's recovery.
- Backsteps can not be done on wakeup: the game's engine disables backsteps for the first 5 frames after recovering from knockdown.
- Evasive Action
- Press A + C to perform a dodge forward that can avoid attacks and pass through the opponent similar to a forward roll found in the King of Fighters series. This can be used to evade enemy attacks and projectiles, but not throws. Evasive Action also have a bit of recovery at the end that is punishable. Evasive Action can also be used in pressure to create cross-up scenarios by having your persona attack from one side while you move to the other; the opponent must block in relation to the player's position and not the persona's.
- 1-2F vulnerable
- 3-24F strike/projectile invincible and can pass through opponent
- 33F total duration
- Counter Hit state from 3F onward
- Ground Ukemi (aka Ground Tech)
- When your character is knocked to the ground, press any single button to make your character flash white and flip off the ground. This entire animation is invincible (duration: 33 frames), but is slow thus giving your opponent time to set up a mixup.
- You can delay when you Ukemi in order to throw off the opponent's attack timing, but this carries some risk; you are vulnerable while laying on the ground, and if you wait too long your character will automatically rise from the ground. This rising animation is completely safe, but the time before you start rising is completely vulnerable and allows the opponent to start a new combo on you with damage scaling reset!
- If you do not ukemi immediately when you touch the ground, there is a short period of time where you can not ukemi (duration of 30 frames). The opponent can hit you during this time and continue the combo, though the HUD will show that the combo was invalid (since you could have escaped earlier) and the proration from the previous combo will carry over.
- Jump/Double Jump
- Press any of the upward directions to jump. All characters can also perform a double jump by jumping again while midair. Ground jumps have 3 frames of startup where you are still considered on the ground, are invincible to throws, can not block, and can cancel the jump startup into ground Skill Attacks. Once airborne, you will not be able to block for the first 5 frames you are airborne, making jumping a risky evasive maneuver.
- Super Jump
- To Super Jump, start from 5, then quickly press any downward direction, then any upward direction. Super Jumps have startup just like normal jumps. They are used to create vertical distance between you and your opponent as well as to run away; super jump over the opponent, then air dash away! Note that you can not double jump after a super jump, so your only air option is to air dash.
- Press 2 + A + C while on the ground to perform a short jump forward. Hops have Foot attribute invincibility and throw invincibility on startup, so it's useful for jumping over the opponent's low attacks and ground throws. Actions can not immediately be performed after a Hop (you must wait a until the apex of the hop) and you can not perform air dashes/double jumps at all during a Hop (but you can Air Turn!). In addition to that, you can not block at all during a Hop and Hops have 9F landing recovery. Thus Hops are poor offensive tools that should only be used to beat opponents mashing throws and low attacks.
- Air Turn
- Press A+C while airborne to turn around mid-air. This can be used to turn to face opponents who run under you to the other side, hit opponent as you jump over them, as well as to perform forward air dashes away from the opponent (which not only travels a longer distance than Air Back Dashes, but also prevents you from entering Negative Penalty).
- When doing specials in the air you must do them in relation to the way your character is facing.
- For example, Narukami facing away from his opponent would do j.236A to do a Raging Lion, not j.214A.
- Air Dash Forward/Backward
- While airborne, press 66 to perform an air dash forward, and 44 to perform an air dash backward. This is used to cover large distances quickly, but is vulnerable during startup.
- Air Back Dash are invincible 1-5F
- A common tactic is to perform an air dash immediately after jumping in order to cover distance quickly and avoid ground attacks; in fact this tactic is so common that it has its own name: Instant Air Dash (IAD). IADs can be performed by pressing 956 for a forward air dash or 754 for a backward air dash. The idea is that the jump includes a directional input that can also count as an input for the air dash command.
- Air Ukemi (aka Air Tech)
- After getting hit in the air, a blue bar will appear under the combo counter that shows how long Air Ukemi is disabled. Hold the button down while you are getting hit in the air and you will Air Ukemi as soon as the blue bar empties. By holding left, right, or up (or no direction at all), you can choose the direction you recover.
- Air Ukemi takes 15 frames and you are invincible the entire time.
- If you touch the ground before you air ukemi, you can perform a Ground Ukemi.
- Usually, you will want to ukemi immediately when possible, but opponents can take advantage of this behavior by setting up a mixup that you will be forced to block when you ukemi. A common counter to this tactic is to delay your ukemi in order to throw off the opponent's mixup timing, but this carries some risk; the opponent can simply hit you before you ukemi and continue to combo you!
- Regaining Air Options
- After air blocking, air ukemi, or breaking an air throw (or your air throw is broken) you can air dash and double jump again; meaning that it's possible to do things like air dash, get hit, air ukemi, then air dash or double jump a second time! Or Superjump, break an air throw, then double jump!
- Auto Combo
- Each character has a combo that can be done by rapidly pressing the A button. More information can be found here.
- Special Cancel
- Most normal attacks can be canceled into specials, Furious Actions, and super attacks. This is generally used to create combo, but can have other applications as well.
- Jump Cancel
- Some normal attacks can be canceled into jump and super jump. This is used in combos as well as block strings and mixup. Some attacks can only be jump canceled on hit.
- One More! Cancel
- Press A+B+C to cancel any attack that does not whiff (in other words, any attack that touches the opponent) to cancel the attack and bring yourself back into a neutral state. These cancels are very powerful for making new frame traps, new combos, or making your attacks safe. More detailed information can be found here.
- Super Cancel
- Cancel a Skill or Furious Action into a super in order to extend combos. Super Cancels convert 5% of your max health into Blue Health (speculated).
- Dash Cancel
- Some attacks can be canceled into a dash (either forward or backward), such as Chie's 5C. This is different from canceling into a run since this dash runs a preset distance and can not be canceled into anything else.
- P Combo
- Normal attacks can be canceled into other normal attacks and jump. Each character has different rules as to which normals can cancel into what other actions (some attacks can't be canceled at all!). This is analogous to Guilty Gear's Gatling or BlazBlue's Revolver Action. The general flow is that attacks cancel from A > B > C > D. You can find your character's exact rules in the Frame Data section.
- Clashes happen when two opposing hitboxes touch each other. During a clash each character can cancel the attack into any action the attack can normally be canceled into on block, in addition to always being able to cancel into throw, sweep, All Out Attack, Specials, One More Cancel, or Supers, but you must be fast to react to it. Thus when clashes happen either the players are unable to react to it because it is unexpected, or they understand how the attacks interact well enough to intentionally cause a clash to cancel out the opponent's attack, then retaliate with their own!
When you hold down an attack button in P4Arena, the game repeats the button input every frame for as long as the button is held down for up to 3 frames (speculated). This means that difficult links are easier to do by holding the button a little earlier than usual.
Example: Mitsuru can do Throw > 5A in the corner, but the timing is difficult. By holding the button a little before the end of the throw's animation, you will be able to do the 5A immediately after the throw finishes its recovery.
The technique is useful for punishing opponent's blocked attacks as quickly as possible.
Similarly, the same principle can be applied to runs/backsteps/airdashes!
If you input a run within 3F (speculated) of the end of an attack's recovery, then regardless of the stick's direction after that, you will dash as soon as recovery ends. This technique is useful for linking together combos and counter attacks because it gives your attacks more range for free. In fact, some combos rely on this property to link a running 5A/B/C/D or else the combo wouldn't work.
Super Flash Buffer
During an opponent's super flash/freeze (when they perform a super attack, the screen freezes briefly), you can input commands and they will be executed immediately after the super freeze ends. This means that provided you are not in the middle of an attack, it is trivially easy to react to an opponent's super attacks with an attack of your own.
This buffer is often used to execute an invincible attack (such as an Evasive Action, a B+D, or your own super) that will avoid the opponent's attack! This is because supers usually have a bit of startup even AFTER the super flash. If you can have an invincible attack out before the opponent's attack becomes active, then you can avoid the attack!
Super attacks list their startup values as: startup pre-flash + startup post-flash.
Meaning an attack with startup 5+5 has 5 frames of startup, then the super flash, then 5 more frames of startup.
- Supers With No Startup After Super Flash
- Some supers are special: they have no additional startup after the super flash. This means that you cannot use this super flash buffer to beat these supers because the attack will already be active immediately following the super freeze.
- Kanji's Super Throw (Burn to a Crisp!) is a prime example of this; you must already have some way to avoid Kanji's Super Throw BEFORE the super flash if you want to beat it.