Thursday, 30 December 2010

Dancing with the claw - For beginners; Part III

There's a few long gaps between entries from here on out seeing as I'm trying to add a little more detail and I really would like to get everything down to make these guides as accurate as possible.
After explaining his cosmic heel, overhead, flips etc. It gets a little more complicated to explain while trying to keep everything still basic.
Regardless, as promised, let's start with getting out of a corner with Vega.

Getting out of a Corner:
For Vega, getting out of a corner can feel daunting at first (Considering his lack of 'Get off me!' Invincibility moves), but it is certainly important to remain completely calm. Pushing buttons, trying to jump up desperately trying to get yourself out and back flipping will only serve to keep you pinned; Right where the opponent wants you.
I personally make a lot of use of Vega's throw for this. Having great range and priority, you will find yourself using it frequently anyway.
"But...When do I throw?" I imagine you'll ask. Be aware that this is something that comes with time and every player is different. You won't be able to pinpoint the same throw time on everyone you come across but you can find ways to stop yourself being stuck there forever at their mercy.

The things you need to look for when cornered:
  • Patterns
    A lot of players, when dealing with a cornered opponent, usually will try a set of attacks called block strings in an attempt to keep you under pressure. What you will find is that after a while, each string of attacks will have similarities. It's these similarities that you need to look for and figure out which of your attacks can counter them.
  • Throws
    A common tactic when keeping someone in a corner is to do a technique called Tick throwing (More on it later), this is where the player interrupts their own blockstring to attempt to throw you. Sometimes you can be caught offguard, but if you know it is coming, tech it with your own throw. Then see how they react upon a tech. This may not initially get you out of the corner, but upon seeing their reaction allows you to plot ways to get out, should you tech another.
You can also be aware of jump-ins that they may attempt and counteract with an anti-air, which I will explain later in this article. Sometimes a jump-in is exactly what you need, especially when you're using Vega, who has a very decent forward dash. This often will allow you to dash under your opponent's jump in attempts (depending on the arc of their jump; meaning, you can forget dashing under Hakan.)
It is difficult to get out of a corner with Vega, but it is not impossible. I find that knowing that they will throw (assuming I am crouch charging), poking out a helps immensly. It will stuff most throws and should you have meter, gives you an opening to link into an EX Walldive to get yourself out of there. Even if it is blocked, should you land on the other side of the screen, you will be safe against a few characters (except, for example, with the exception of Dudley, who will machine gun blow you back into a corner for your effort).
I use Vega's wall jump (Not to be confused with walldive) to often pull myself out, but it must be very well timed or you will find yourself back where you started (To do a walljump, just jump back against a wall and instantly hit up-forward, he will jump off the wall behind him). 
Vega can gain a good height relatively quickly, and so, timed right, will jump over your opponent and put them in a corner instead where you can then press the advantage.
Another method, that was recently pointed out to me, is the use of Vega's slide (cr.HK) to pull yourself out of a corner when your opponent jumps at you. It's fast, travels far and shrinks his active hitbox (Making him far more difficult to hit). Due to it's speed, your opponent might only be fast enough to poke you once but it will rarely end in you taking a lot of damage if done correctly.

Other than that, the most important mode is block, block and block some more until you can poke out an attack safely (which usually falls hand in hand with the two points that I covered).
If you are finding yourself cornered often with Vega, you're not using his mobility to it's fullest. He has excellent walk speed and an even greater backdash. These keep him moving freely without compromising your spacing, so should you keep finding yourself cornered, you're doing something wrong.
If this keeps happening, try to figure out why you're getting cornered and make adjustments to your game to avoid the situation from happening again.

Pokes to be aware of:
For my next trick, I will be talking upon the subject of pokes that you should be aware of and some that you probably aren't using; perhaps from not realising their potential.
To start with, poking is a very vital part of Vega's game; being that he has some of the best moves to do it out of a lot of the cast due to their range and speed. This coupled with his walk speed makes him pretty dangerous in the right hands.
"What is this 'poking' that you're referring to?" I realize is what you're thinking at this moment, but to answer;
Poking is using various normals/command normals that are considered quick and safe; they can be used at various distances depending on the situation for varying purposes such as:
  • Keeping a character away
  • Getting your own character closer
  • To gauge your distance for moves that require specific spacing to work efficiently (IE Cosmic Heel and your Overhead)
  • To give you a method of grinding the opponent's health down safely, especially against characters that can hurt when up close such as Zangief.
Now that the description's over with, I will now explain which pokes are best to be used with Vega and why.
  • cr.lp/
    These two moves alone, are excellent and essential to Vega's game. Not only does cr.lp link into itself or a, depending on your choosing (Leading to both a hit confirm and even into combos), but it makes for a great poking tool in itself due to the range [Obviously this includes the use of his claw] and the startup being fairly quick.
    The recover is very quick, especially on the cr.lp and thus makes a whiffed cr.lp/ difficult to punish (Unless we're talking people mashing a shoryuken/cannon spike/some other 3 frame startup reversal).
    It will more than likely be your main crouch poke as it also spaces fairly well and is one of the easiest methods to combo into Vega's EX FBA (Which is generally what you're fishing for when you have meter available to you.)
    This, in itself, is pretty decent but only up close. I consider it better for preventing throw attempts than actually poking (seeing as pokes are meant to be distant attempts at attacking rather than deadset infront of you.) As mentioned before in my "Getting out of a corner" section, it can lead into EX.FBA. It can also lead into a L.Scarlet Terror (Bear in mind that this will whiff on a crouching opponent) and a L.Claw Roll (Or Rolling Crystal Flash if you prefer)
    Just like before, it's fast, has good recovery and is all around fairly decent.
  • -
    St.LK is probably one of Vega's more underestimated pokes. The range is good for what it is, it's fast, the recover is exceptional and even better you can combo (Even if it is a little more advanced) into cr.lp/ which can be used as a trap to your opponent (It's a frame trap, which I'll talk about later on, so just bear this term in mind for now).
  • st.MK
    I always found that people underestimate the range of Vega's st.MK. In this sense, it's a great poking tool as it tends to gather plenty of counterhits (Which often do not trade with you) and in a way, can end up making your opponent a little scared of tapping a button even from mid-screen away.
    It serves as an excellent keep-out tool because it can safely keep your opponent at a distance (Being Vega's longest reaching attack) and at the same time set up for other poking and footsie games that you may have in mind.
    However, be careful; it's fast, but can be punished if thrown out a tad too much, just like a lot of his other long range pokes.
    As was said with st.MK, Vega's is quite the bit underestimated on it's range as well as it's startup (which gets even better in Arcade Edition). The greater thing about compared with is that you can combo from this very easily into an EX FBA either by itself or linking into cr.lp/ I recommend going for if you're using it long-range.
    All of these pokes, combined with Vega's walk speed can prove to be dangerous provided that you keep your spacing in tact and be tactical about throwing them out (IE, don't throw out a move for the heck of it. Actually THINK about your poke.).
    Think to yourself "Where can I go if this lands? Can I combo? Score a knockdown? Maybe get myself in closer to do even greater damage?" You need to think all of these steps ahead otherwise your pokes become nothing more than random little attacks thrown out there; which may, in turn, get you into a heap of trouble.

    When I start going into footsies, you may want to check back on this article to see which ones that you think might fit your play style when put into a different perspective; Not every Vega uses the same pokes nor the same tools to footsie. It varies by preference and is something that you'll come to by yourself. Which brings us to our next section;

Learning to walk before you jump:
Learning to walk at times, especially when you're new to fighters or even just street fighter in general, can be difficult.
You will see it all the time; players will always say "But it gets me across the screen faster =/"
True as this statement is, there's a lot of cons to go with perhaps maybe one or two pros that jumping in place of walking will do.
First, we'll start with the cons that may deter you from the 'pros' that aren't exactly pros when you start excelling beyond beginner...which won't happen if you keep jumping!

The cons:
  •  Vega, as with many other characters, is extremely vulnerable in the air against a lot of the cast (argue airthrow all you want, it's easy to stuff and your opponent's antiairs are NOT your friend).
  • Vega's walk speed and back dash are far greater options as they allow you to evaluate your options far better as it gives you the option to poke and footsie from various angles other than just a jump-in attack.
  • Jumping gets very predictable quickly, due to the aforementioned lack of options to attack. At a higher level, this isn't going to get you much more than a punch in the face and even then, more than that.
  •  Well, sometimes at a newer level...that is to say, playing against someone who is also new, it might get you one or two free hits. You can't even really call it a pro because once you get past the level of a beginner, this becomes an entirely moot point.

Of course, I'm not saying "Don't ever jump.". But it is a far better option to use Vega's ground mobility before you start taking to the air; HINT: he is far stronger on the ground.

This just about wraps up part three of the beginner's guide to using Vega; Next up we'll be talking about:
Explaining hitboxes and their importance with Anti-airs and Air to airs, Basic BnBs, Ultra and Super and Meter Management.


Rizhall said...

I think it's a good guide! I actually did learn from it XD
I wish I could help more with better criticism, but I already told you everything I could before.

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