Super Street Fighter IV: Rebalancing the Original Cast: Part 3
Super Street Fighter IV hits store shelves soon. This means that the developer blog will no longer update in a few weeks. Until then, we’ll keep providing summaries and links to the full translations done by Azrael.
Below is a brief list of all the changes mentioned for the characters this week. As always, not all details are mentioned. It’s best that you read the full blog post for more information. If you haven’t been keeping up, be sure to read part one and two of the rebalancing series.
- tweaks heavily influenced by player feedback
- One example: Burning Kick now has add recovery frames if blocked so that it can’t be spammed as easily
- Crouching Medium Punch has more priority and can be used as a counter poke
- Dive Kick damage has been reduced
- Rufus has a bigger reduction in damage than other characters
- He is also the most unchanged character in the game
- Guacamole Leg Throw does more damage
- His target combo forward kick is easier to connect
- The infinite loop combo was left intact
- Not many buffs but he is stronger than before and should be easier to play as
- The Sky Fall air grab now connects easier
- His sweep now moves slightly further
- his far standing light punch is faster
- most of Abel’s normal moves have gotten better
- Damage has been toned down
- He has been balanced with the idea that he is a player character and not a boss
- Increased recovery on his Yoga Teleport
- Reduced priority on his jumping back Hard Punch
- Functionality of moves remains the same
- Demon Flip Throw no longer leaves Akuma at an advantage if blocked or missed
- The amount of stun done by strong combos has been reduced
- Difficult combos do more stun than before
- His counter attack is easier to do now
- All of his normal moves come out faster now
- His hurricane kick will be easier to hit now due to increased hit boxes
It was also mentioned that the boss characters will be completely different than the versions that players use. The frame date for Akuma, Seth, and Gouken are different and they are stronger. This should make the CPU interesting to fight.
Next week the developers will discuss Cammy, Fei Long, Sakura, Rose, Gen, and Dan. This will be the final entry in the rebalancing series. Hopefully Sakura receives some buffs in SSFIV.
Here is Azrael’s full translation:
Hello everyone! This is Tsukamoto.
We’d like to keep things rolling from last week in talking about the character adjustments. This week, together with the battle planners we’ll be covering the SFIV newcomers C.Viper, Rufus, El Fuerte, Abel, Seth, and also Akuma and Gouken as well.
Let’s get right into it – please tell us about the adjustments for C. Viper.
C. Viper is a character that has been heavily influenced by player feedback, so we wanted to adjust her while keeping her image from the last game as intact as possible.
We’ve made some adjustments to the moves that she could just spam. For example, her Burning Kick, where even if the opponent blocks Viper is at an advantage. While there are no changes if the move hits or misses, on block we’ve added a few extra frames of recovery.
Any other adjustments?
We’ve also made some adjustments to her Crouching Medium Punch. Her Crouching Medium Kick is pretty good, so Crouching Medium Punch gets overlooked. In order for Crouching Medium Punch to have more of a presence in the game, we’ve given it a bit more priority so she can use it as a counter-poke. But since Viper’s play style is pretty fast-paced, it may be difficult to find the right time to use it. We improved it to just give her a nice accent. So it won’t really affect her fight style, but in those times where Crouching Medium Punch lost out, now it will win.
How should we use her ultras?
Burst Time (Ultra 1) is an ultra that had to be combo’ed into, and required a fair bit of technique, but Burning Dance (Ultra 2) is a lot easier to use. Rather than in a combo, this is a move you can hit on its own.
Now let’s talk about Rufus’s adjustments.
The biggest adjustment is that the damage on his Dive Kick has been reduced. We looked into various areas, and we felt that what gave people the most problems fighting against Rufus was the Dive Kick, so that’s what we focused on for the adjustments. We tried completely nerfing it, but then Rufus would have been pretty much unplayable. We went through a lot of trial and error for this, and since we didn’t want to take away Rufus’s playstyle or his fun, we decided to keep the move as-is and just reduce the damage.
As you may have read on the blog before, damage is being reduced all across the board, but Rufus in particular has seen a slightly bigger reduction in damage out of all the other characters. Of course, everything hasn’t been reduced, but we’ve been working on the stuff that he could just spam, or moves that were too strong.
So in Street Fighter 4, Rufus was just a strong character that didn’t need any technique?
That’s not quite it. Of course, technique is necessary for controlling your character. Just, since his damage output was so high, when he got an opening he could do more damage than the other characters, so we are adjusting that aspect. Also, many players felt that they didn’t know how to retaliate against Rufus’s attacks, or they had problems knocking him down. While we haven’t particularly weakened Rufus in this area, we feel that the strength adjustments to the other characters will better help them here. As for the feel of play, Rufus is perhaps the most unchanged from Street Fighter 4. So for those who enjoyed playing as him in IV, you can play him the same way in Super Street Fighter 4.
What type of move is his new ultra, Big Bang Typhoon?
The main thing about his new ultra, Big Bang Typhoon, is that it deals out quite a bit of chip damage. So when you have ultra stored up and your opponent is trying to run away from you, you can use it to chip them to death. Also, it has a fairly large hitbox, and it vacuums in jumping opponents, so its pretty good as anti-air.
Okay, now please tell us about El Fuerte’s adjustments.
In Street Fighter 4, El Fuerte was known as the random character, so we tried to adjust him while keeping that intact. In order to be effective as a random character, technique is necessary – so in Super Street Fighter 4 as well we are keeping the feel of his play.
In general, what type of adjustments have you done to his moves?
We’ve raised the damage on his Guacamole Leg Throw (Air Grab). In battle, hitting it is fairly difficult, so we gave it a damage boost to compensate. We’ve also made his target combo forward kick easier to connect, and probably what most people are concerned about – we’re leaving his Infinite Loop Combo in.
Tell us about his new ultra, the El Fuerte Ultra Spark.
We made it as a counter if you can match your opponent’s movements. The move slides him forward, and it counts as a throw move in that state. The throw range while he’s sliding is pretty wide, so if you can match your opponent’s movements its a throw that will win out a lot of the time. It works great against grounded opponents, and if your opponent is trying to match your moves then this works nicely as a counter.
Against which characters does the El Fuerte Ultra Spark offer an advantage?
If I had to choose, I’d say Ryu or the other projectile characters. The sliding goes under projectiles. Also, the throw period is fairly large, so you can do the ultra upon seeing the fireball and have it hit. But rather than just projectiles, its a move for your opponent’s big attacks.
Fuerte was considered to be one of the weakest characters in vanilla Street Fighter 4, but how about Super Street Fighter 4?
As we haven’t really done a lot of buffing to Fuerte himself, maybe his position hasn’t changed? (laughs). But the weak parts of him, as well as things like hitting the move but not being able to do that much damage, we have been strengthening that. So by that, players can bring out their ability more and he should be easier to use than he was in IV.
Next tell us about Abel’s adjustments.
First, we’ve make Sky Fall (Air Grab) easier to use. We intended for it to be anti-air, but the situations where it could actually be used were on the few side. So we’ve adjusted it so that its a little easier to catch people with it.
We’ve also adjusted his sweep. It now hits from a little farther away now – its a small change but it will have a big effect on his matches. Also, his Far Standing Light Punch now comes out a little faster. In general, Abel’s normals have gotten a little better.
Tell us about his new Ultra, Breathless.
Breathless is a grab ultra where he dashes forward and pressures his opponent. You can’t combo into it, but with super armor you can dash in and absorb a hit, really take it to your opponent. Also, if you hold the button down you can delay when it comes out.
You can also cancel it. So if you think its going to whiff for sure, just stop it. (laughs)
Also, as your opponent is getting up, you can start Breathless, and just before they get up, cancel it, and then just throw them regularly – my recommendation!
Against which characters does Breathless offer an advantage?
Characters who can control distance pretty well from afar, as well as characters who do lots of mix-ups in close. It works great at all ranges, but it can be kind of hard to hit against jumping opponents.
Please tell us about Seth’s adjustments.
For Seth, we’re basically tuning down the moves that are too strong, and balancing him better as a player character. We are increasing the recovery on his Yoga Teleport, reducing the priority on his jump back/up Hard Punch, and taking a look at his attack power. However players shouldn’t feel as though his moves will lose functionality, as the things you can do in IV will remain the same in Super Street Fighter 4.
Seth had was considered to be fairly strong in IV, do you feel that he’s about the same in Super Street Fighter 4?
Among all the characters, I feel he’s on the strong end. Conceptually, he is similar to Akuma. So, he can deal a lot of damage and has good combos, but if he gets rushed down he’s weak.
Tell us about the new Ultra, Tanden Typhoon.
As Tanden Stream (Ultra 1) is a good all-purpose projectile-type, we wanted to give him a more tricky ultra in Tandem Typhoon. The basic uses are anti-air, chip damage, and combo’ed into. Its not quite as all-purpose as Tanden Stream, but it feels nice when you hit it in a combo, so all you combo fans out there please give Tanden Typhoon a try.
Now tell us about Akuma’s adjustments.
We’ve adjusted his Demon Flip Throw. In IV, regardless of whether it was blocked or missed, Akuma was at an advantage, but now Akuma is going to have to use it more carefully.*
(*Azrael’s note: It sounds like Okada is talking about something that isn’t a throw, but the move name he says is the Demon Flip Throw, so… I dunno what to tell you.)
Akuma is a character who deals out a lot of stun, isn’t he?
Yeah… he has loop-like combos and near hit-confirm combos, so in IV he could really dish out a lot of stun. So with one opening he could hit a loop combo and then in the next combo the opponent would definitely be stunned – almost like he gets 2 openings for the price of 1. We wanted to give his opponents a better fighting chance, so basically we’ve adjusted the stun on those strong combos so that they don’t dizzy so easily. However, for Akuma players, if you read your opponent well and hit a really difficult combo, it’ll do a bit more stun than it did in Street Fighter 4.
Tell us about his new ultra.
We made it with the idea that it would be hard to hit, but once you do it’ll feel awesome. It’s almost kind of romantic (laughs). Of course its got its usefulness, and can be used in combos and what not.
And finally, please tell us about Gouken’s adjustments.
We’ve adjusted the Counter Attack (Kongo) so that it will be easier to perform. I believe a lot of people had problems with this, so hopefully this meets your expectations.
As for other stuff, his overhead and all of his normals come out a little faster.
We’ve also increased the hitbox on his Hurricane kick, so it will be easier to hit.
Tell us about his new ultra, the Denjin Hadouken.
Denjin Hadouken is a bit unique in that even if it’s blocked, it will increase the opponent’s stun by a percentage. And if you hold down the button, you can charge it up for more damage. You can also use the hold to delay the timing, to catch jumpers.
Have there been any changes to the CPU boss characters?
The boss characters are completely different from the playable versions. The boss versions of Seth, Akuma, and Gouken are the strongest (laughs). They may look the same, but their frame data is completely different.
Many players told us that CPU Gouken was on the weak side, so we’ve re-adjusted him to be more like a boss character. The moves may look the same, but their functionality is much stronger. On the hardest difficulty setting, they’ll give you a run for your money. However, we have made the easiest setting a bit easier, so a wide range of players will be able to enjoy the game.
Do you have any closing comments for everyone looking forward to the game?
The characters we talked about on today’s blog were brought to completion by the players. As such, we adjusted them to keep the interesting and fun parts they had in IV. As for the original characters from IV, we’re trying to preserve that originality, so that players can continue enjoying in Super Street Fighter 4. As for Seth, Akuma, and Gouken, we didn’t want to take away their feeling of being strong characters – keep their feeling of being bosses, but as player characters, adjust the areas that needed adjustment. The basic feel of the boss characters hasn’t changed from IV, but hopefully the adjustments made will allow their opponents to feel that the player is skilled, not just that the character is good. Also, with new ultras for all of the characters, you have a new choice of attacks to choose from, and this adds to the ways you can enjoy playing. I would like for everyone to enjoy the new features in the game.
Well, I hope you all enjoyed today’s entry. If you want to try out some of these changes for yourself, there are various locations around Japan offering demo play, so if you can check it out by all means please do so!
And next time! For the final entry on character adjustments, next week April 20th we’ll be talking about Cammy, Fei Long, Sakura, Rose, Gen, and Dan. I think there’s a lot of interest in next week’s characters as well, so be sure not to miss out!
As you may have read on Ms. Shiozawa’s blog, this blog will be concluding soon. While there may not be many entries left, we’re going to give it our all right up until the very end!
See you next week!