Super Street Fighter IV – Rebalancing the Original Cast: Part 4
Super Street Fighter IV is only a week away and the last batch of adjusted characters have been detailed. This will be our last summary and possibly the last translated blog post on PS3Attitude. We hope that you have enjoyed the weekly reports and found it interesting.
If you haven’t been keeping up with the adjustments you can read the previous editions:
Below is a brief summary of the changes mentioned in this week’s blog:
- Cannon Spike is not as strong as before
- Spin Knuckle starts up faster now and should be easier to use
- Normal moves have more priority
- Far Standing Hard Kick can act as an anti-air and has more range
- Crouching Hard Kick is easier to hit now
- Improved the cross up properties of her Jumping Light Kick
- Straight-forward moves have been strengthened
- Standing hard kick now does two consecutive attacks and can now break focus attacks
- Chicken Wing is now easier to pull off
- Reduced start up on her fireball
- Improved cross up abilities: Jumping Medium Kick has larger range
- Jumping in should be easier than it was for her in SFIV
- Soul Spark and EX-Soul Spark have a shortened recovery time
- Soul Reflect should be easier to combo with
- Soul Throw can now be used after a juggle
- Her forward hard kick has been nerfed because it was too strong
- Mantis-style jump has a higher arc
- After the invincibility period of a backdash runs out, Gen is now considered to be airborne. This means he won’t take a whole ground combo from an opponent.
- Gen can stay in the air longer after a Crane-style jump so it’s easier to hit jumping attacks
- Medium Punch and Kick are faster
- His wall dive is faster and should hit opponents easier
- Mantis-style Super move has a shortened recovery time
- Crane-style Super move starts up faster
- Increased range on Crouch Hard Punch, on counter hit Gen is now airborne
- All of Gen’s moves have been tweaked in some way
- Chain cancel recovery time has been adjusted so that it makes sense
- Weak Air Dan Kick has been slightly adjusted so that it hits easier
- Slightly increased priority on moves in general
- This version of Dan is the strongest ever, but that won’t change his position in Super Street Fighter IV
This blog was a bit more technical than the last, but if you read the entire post it should be easy to understand. We would like to give a huge thanks to Azrael for doing an amazing job translating these blogs for everyone to enjoy. See you online next week and keep an eye out for our Super review.
Hello everyone! This is Tsukamoto.
I got to go with producer Ono to an event in Hawaii! Sorry I got to kick back in a nice warn country. Even though the nice wide beach was right before me, with the pre-sale presentation overseas I didn’t get to go… No, the most important thing is that everyone knows more about Super Street Fighter IV, so forget the beach, we gave it out all for SSFIV promos!
This week, together with the battle planner we’ll be talking about the adjustments to Cammy, Fei Long, Sakura, Rose, Gen, and Dan!
Well then, first off tell us about the adjustments to Cammy.
One of the first adjustments we made was to some of her moves that were just simply strong. Like the Cannon Spike, which had too much offensive power. But we have shortened the start-up for some of her moves that were a bit difficult to use, especially her Spin Knuckle, which should be much easier to use now.
For her normals, we’ve given her a bit more priority on her normals. For example, her Far Standing Hard Kick now has anti-air properties, and has a bit more range than in Street Fighter 4, so now its good for controlling space. Also, her Crouching Hard Kick – in IV, sometimes it would look like it should hit but it didn’t, so in this game it should be a bit easier to hit now. We’ve also improved the cross-up properties on her Jumping Light Kick, which should improve her aerial offense.
If we look at the total package, then Cammy has gotten more improvements than nerfs?
Yes. While she has gotten a lot of improvements, to balance the game out in general damage on the whole is down, so I don’t think players will feel that she is too strong. Now, she can better vary her attacks, so now players can enjoy different playstyles with her.
What type of move is her new ultra, the CQC (Cammy Quick Combination)?
Her ultra in Street Fighter 4, the Spiral Drive Smasher was really good for rushing down, and could be used in combos. So we wanted to do something different for her for the new ultra, which is how CQC came about. CQC is a counter ultra, so if you don’t successfully read your opponent’s movements nothing is going to happen. Compared to the other characters though, it does a lot of damage, so it has great comeback potential. So it’ll be difficult to hit, but if you do you get a great reward in damage dealt.
So this is a move that’s best suited against attacking characters?
If the player is really good at reading their opponent, then CQC can be used against any character. But if you use CQC against a grappler, it might lead to trouble. In an instant you can find yourself eating a Spinning Pile Driver (laughs).
Next, tell us about the adjustments for Fei Long
The image of Fei Long is one of a character who bulldozes his way forward, especially using his Rekka Ken’s. That much hasn’t changed. But we have strengthened his straight-forward moves. For example, we have changed the timing of the attacks for his Standing Hard Kick. In Street Fighter 4, an opponent could do a Focus Attack in between the two hits, but now the two hits are consecutive, so its a move that will beat out the opponent’s Focus Attack. You can also use it as just a quick combo. We’ve also adjusted the inputs for his Flying Kick (Chicken Wing), so now it is easier to pull off.
Tell us about his new ultra, Gekirin Ken.
This is also a counter ultra, the same as Cammy’s CQC. A counter ultra might be more suited to Fei Long than Cammy – the main force of Fei’s offense is his Rekka Ken’s, and opponents will usually want to get an attack in to break it up. If Fei players can use the counter ultra well, then this will be a great asset to them.
Well then, tell us about the adjustments for Sakura.
In Street Fighter 4, the startup on her Fireball was kind of slow, and what would happen is that opponents could jump in on her easily. So in Super Street Fighter IV, we’ve reduced some of the startup to make the move a bit easier to use. We’ve also improved her cross-up abilities. In the past, Sakura could jump in and then link together moves and this was her primary means of offense. But in IV, Sakura didn’t have a lot of cross-up ability, so fighting like this was a bit difficult. So we’ve changed her Jumping Medium Kick to have a bigger cross-up range, which should allow her to jump in and confuse her opponent’s guard better. So she should have an easier time jumping in than in Street Fighter 4.
What type of move is her new ultra, Shinkuu Hadouken?
While Haru Ranman was a hit-type ultra that could be used in combos, Shinkuu Hadouken is a projectile type. Shinkuu Hadouken doesn’t do as much damage, but I feel that its easier to use, such as in situations of controlling space. Also, depending on the button you use to activate it, it can become the anti-air Shinkuu Tengyo Hadouken, or the ground-based Shinkuu Hadouken.
Shinkuu Hadouken is a good move to have when she has her opponent in the corner. If you use the anti-air Tengyo Hadouken, with its upwards angle she can catch people who are trying to jump out. She can also hit people with it who are still on the ground. When she has ultra, and the opponent is closer to the corner, she can use it to scare her opponents out of jumping or using air-based attacks. So this ultra will change the way people fight against Sakura.
Tell us about Rose’s adjustments.
For Rose, we have shortened the recovery on her Soul Spark and EX-Soul Spark, and make her Soul Reflect more comboable. We wrote about this on a previous blog, but now you can use Soul Throw off a juggle. So without changing the way she is played from IV, she has some new combos and more interesting things to explore. On the other hand, we’ve also adjusted the things that were a bit too strong. We’ve slightly nerfed her Soul Piede (Toward + Hard Kick).
What kind of move is her new ultra, Soul Satellite?
Rose up until now has been able to divide herself, absorb projectiles, etc – so compared to other characters she’s a bit quirky. So keeping with that idea, we came up with the Soul Satellite ultra. Simply put, her soul orbs just revolve around her, but its a pesky little ultra that can be used for both offense and defense. There are various combinations it can be used in.
The orbs continually revolve around her, so it will be difficult for her opponent to find the right timing to attack.
Yes, but for opponents who just block all day, it’s going to be hard for Rose to deal out large amounts of damage, so figuring out timing is going to be important I think.
The Soul Satellites themselves don’t do much damage, but if you combine them with other moves then you can get some nice things happening.
Tell us about the adjustments for Gen.
In America, many people are saying that Gen has gotten weaker, and those rumors have infiltrated Japan as well. So I imagine there are many people who want to hear about this.
Yes. Word on the street is that Gen has gotten weaker, but I think that rather than saying he’s weaker, our adjustments to him have been to make him more like Gen. The most important point was to give him more variation between his Crane and Mantis styles. Being able to effectively use his Crane and Mantis styles is what will bring Gen to life.
First, we’ve changed the jump for both Crane and Mantis. In Mantis style his jump arc is a bit higher than in was in Street Fighter 4. Also, in IV, if he does a backdash and the invincibility runs out, he was considered to be in a grounded state, which meant that he could also eat a big combo as well. But for Super Street Fighter 4, he will be considered airborne, so all he will eat is the counter attack, so this is pretty good for Gen. Also, for Crane style, during a jump he will stay in the air a bit longer, so it will be easier to land jumping attacks. While there were many people who felt that the low jumps made attacking easier, in IV there were a lot of instances where Gen would hit the ground before he could get his attack out, so we made our adjustments with this in mind. We also sped up the startup on his Medium Punch and Medium Kick, that many people felt were slow and heavy. Now it should be much quicker to get out.
For his specials, we’ve made his Oga wall dives faster, so it should be easier to hit opponents with. If we were to put this in numbers, in IV after clinging to the ceiling and then going for his attack, the attack came out on the 10th frame. In Super Street Fighter 4, now it comes out on the 3rd frame. So, its 7 frames faster.
We’ve shortened the recovery on the Mantis Super to 4 frames after hit, and the startup on his Crane Super has been shortened by/to 10 frames, making it easier to hit with. Also, for his Crouch Hard Punch, which is pretty important for him, we’ve increased the hit range of it, and on counter hit Gen will take airborne damage. In the Alpha series, this was a move that if Gen landed would lead to big damage, but on counter hit Gen would take big damage, but this time around we’ve done things a little differently.
From what we’ve heard it sounds like Gen has gotten stronger – what do you think his rank in the tiers are now?
Having moves that come out fast and with good priority don’t always make for a strong character. Gen has always been about technique, and that hasn’t changed. Now, I just feel that his ease of use has gotten fairly better.
What other areas have been adjusted?
For Gen, basically there’s nothing we haven’t tweaked – we’ve adjusted more or less all of his moves. He has been strengthened to really bring out his technique. The adjustments we’ve made that are a bit off-course from that is that his Medium Kick, Cancel into Rapid Slap (Hyakurenkou) loop combo is a lot harder to do now. With this loop combo, even if the opponent blocked, Gen could bully them with this, and it was kind of one-sided for Gen. The flow is basically Medium Kick -> Hands -> Medium Kick -> Hands – maybe this is something that people can’t ordinarily do, but with a rapid-fire pad then you can keep this up continuously. We had a lot of Gen players telling us “This isn’t how Gen fights!” and as its not really Gen-like it was taken out.
Tell us about his new ultras.
The Mantis ultra is based off his old “Shitenshuu” touch of death move, and the Crane Ultra is a powered-up version of his Oga wall dives. For the Mantis ultra, in the same way that you can combo his Crane Ultra I from the Waterfall Kick, Gen can combo the Mantis Ultra II from the Waterfall Kick as well. If you have confidence in your rushdown, Mantis Ultra II should be interesting. Crane Ultra II is a mid-air ultra, so if you match up with your opponent’s movements there should be plenty of ways to hit it. It’s especially good against opponents with projectiles. For example, it can be a good counter against Fireballs. So if your opponent is just randomly throwing Fireballs against you, Gen can use this ultra to really make him pay for it.
Tell us about the adjustments for Dan.
Dan is one of our more interesting characters, so we wanted to strengthen him on that basis. We’ve made him a bit more fun to use, and adjusted some things that didn’t work in IV. For example, when doing a chain cancel, his recovery time was kind of strange, so we fixed that to make things easier to link up. Also, we’ve slightly adjusted the start up frames on his weak Air Dan Kick so that it hits easier. He also gets a bit more priority, which makes his attacks a bit easier to hit now than before.
Tell us about his new ultra, the Haou Gadouken.
Haou Gadouken is a projectile move. Although its best range is up close, if it hits the opponent it does nice chip damage, so its a nice move against other projectiles. Also, it has combo potential, and you can hit it off juggles.
With these adjustments, has Dan moved up in the tiers?
Within the dev team, we feel that this is the Strongest Dan Ever, but his position won’t change from SFIV! (laughs) That position is all his.
Do you have any closing thoughts for everyone who is looking forward to the game?
On this blog, the characters we’ve talked about have all basically been improved, so it should be much easier to fight with them than before. Reading the comments, I can see that a lot of people are worried about Gen in particular. So if this blog could ease those concerns, I’d be really happy. When SFIV first came out, I felt that I wanted to bring back the Gen from previous titles, and with plenty of similar opinions after the game went to sale, the adjustments have been made to try and make Gen as close as possible to our imagination of him. I feel that Gen is closer to himself this time around, so if everyone could give him a try after the game goes on sale that’d be great.
I hope you all enjoyed today’s entry. This completes the adjustment notes for all the characters from SFIV! We were not able to include all the things that people who read this blog requested, so my apologies for that. Within development, we took in as many opinions as possible, adjusted carefully with balance in mind. Once you play the game you’ll be able to see for yourself. So next week, get the game software and give it a spin!
As next week is the release date, that will have an effect on the power of this blog, as well as Ms. Shiozawa and Mr. Ayano’s blog. Development staff will be dropping by for comments, but for the Dev Blog I think we’ll keep the same format we’ve had up until now.
Also, there will be a new blog entry right before release date, in which we compile the various things producer Ono has said on overseas sites and what not. You may already know a lot of this, but there may be people who don’t know, so this will be good for them!
Well then, see you next week!
Super Street Fighter IV hits store shelves on April 27th in North America and on April 30th in Europe.