Guide The Wandering Warrior - A SSB4 Ryu Guide

Elessar

Nouyons TO
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#1


Foreword


This guide is meant to serve as an introduction not only to Ryu, but to smash and its competitive scene in general for all newcomers. As such it will cover some general mechanics such as Stale Moves and DI. Finally, if you’re truly a newcomer, I would heartily recommend you read the Smash Dictionary in order to learn Smash terminology. While this guide does include a glossary on some Smash terms, as well as Ryu specific terms, it is still a good idea to acquire as much of our community lingo as possible. No Johns.

This guide is also a continuous work in progress, so any feedback or contribution is more than welcome.

Table of Content

1.1 Glossary of Terms
1.1.1 Special Notations
1.2 Reference Threads & Material
1.3 General Mechanics of Smash
1.3.1 Stale Moves
1.3.2 Directional Influence
1.4 Frame Data
1.5 Moveset Analysis
1.5.1 Normal Grounded Attacks
1.5.2 Smash Attacks
1.5.3 Aerials
1.5.4 Grabs & throws
1.5.5 Specials
1.5.6 Recovery Options
1.6 How to play Ryu
1.6.1 Playing the Neutral
1.6.2 Frame Traps
1.6.3 Recovery Options
1.7 Additional Material
1.7.1 Tutorial Videos
1.7.2 Tutorial Threads
1.8 Acknowledgements

1.1 Glossary of Terms
Use ctrl+f to find the terms you seek more easily
Auto Cancel: A move that cancels itself without any input from the player being required.
A-Stick: Setting the C-stick to “Attacks” rather than “Smash”.
AT: Advanced Technique.
Blast Zone: The invisible line outside of the visual field the character needs to cross in order to lose a stock.
B-Stick: Setting the C-stick to “Specials” rather than “Smash”.
Cancel: End an action prematurely with another action. They can be performed in many different ways, usually but not always requiring secondary (or more) input from the original cancelable action. Examples are, dash cancels, edge cancels, L-cancels, auto-cancels.
Charged: In Smash, if you perform a Smash attack and hold the attack button you can charge the attack thus making it hit harder for more damage and knockback.
Combo: Two or more attacks which can connect before the opponent leaves hitstun. In Smash, combos are not guaranteed since they can be escaped through DI.
C-Stick: The yellow stick in the controller usually set to smash attacks.
DI: Stands forDirectional Influence. It refers to slightly altering the direction/trajectory you get hit in by holding the joystick in any perpendicular direction at any point before or instantly after you get hit with an attack (to be precise, you need to be holding a direction as your character goes from being in 'hitlag' to 'hitstun'). You cannot alter the distance that you get hit by using DI, only the angle you get launched at.
DP: Dragon Punch or Shoryuken.
DJ: Double Jump. The jump done while airborne.
Dmg: Damage.
FADC: Focus Attack Dash Cancel.
FF: Fast Fall. Pressing down while on the air in order to fall faster.
FH: Full Hop. The maximum height a character can obtain with a single jump.
Fire Hado: See Shakunetsu.
Focus 1: Ryu’s DownB special released as soon as the command is made.
Focus 2: Ryu’s DownB special released after is flashes once.
Focus 3: Ryu’s DownB special released after it flashes for a second time.
Footstool: Refers tot he act of jumping on the head of your opponent's char. Your char just higher (even if you have already used your DJ) while their character is sent tumbling down in a state of helplessness.
Free Fall: A state in which your character cannot do anything while in the air except move left and right. For example, this occurs after using most characters’ 'Up specials'.
Fresh: A move which is not stale.
Gimp: The taking of a stock, usually at a low percent, by interrupting/negating a character's recovery.
H: Hold. It refers to pressing and holding a button. Used exclusively for Ryu to differentiate between his commands.
Hado: Hadouken
HC: Half-circle. Input in the Dpad 41236 or 63214 depending the direction your character is facing.
Helpless: See Free Fall.
Hit Confirm: To confirm visually through the use of a quick safe attack that the opponent is being hit before committing to a stronger unsafe attack.
Hit Lag: The period of time that your character must wait in addition to normal animation time upon an attack connecting with another tangible object (shields, characters, certain items and stage objects). No action can be executed during hit lag.
Hit Stun: The period of time after being hit during which a character is unable to do anything.
Jab: Basic attack in Smash. Done by pressing A once.
KB: See Knockback.
Knockback: The property of any attack that makes the character being hit actually get hit away. It refers to the direction and distance a characters is sent away.
Knockback growth: The property of an attack that is dependent on the percent of the character, so it will hit them further and further away the higher their percent is.
KO: Knock Out. In Smash it refers to taking a stock from your opponent.
Ledge Snap: Property of some ledges in which a character will be attracted to the ledge “magnetically” and he will grab the ledge from a distance it should not be possible.
Landing Lag: The period of time during which, upon landing either after or during an aerial attack, a character is unable to execute any action.
Negative Edge: Inputting a command by releasing a button rather than pressing it. For example: press and hold A, perform a QCF and then release A for a Hadouken to be executed.
Neutral: The period of the game during which both characters are on stage, neither of them having an advantage of location.
Off Stage: When a character has been knocked off stage and is trying to return to it.
OoS: Out of Shield. Refers to certain moves being able to be done without having to let go of the shield button to drop your shield and wait before being able to attack. Examples of these are Grab, Item Throw and Jump.
Perfect Shield: Raising your shield at precisely the right moment so that the attack hits it at the same time the shield comes out. The shield suffers no lag or damage and the character can react faster than he would be able to had he just shielded the attack. Ryu performs his parry animation when done properly.
Pound: Attacks done while grabbing an opponent.
PS: See Perfect Shield.
QC: Quarter Circle (236 or 214). Refers to either QCF or QCB.
QCF: Quarter Circle Forward (236). Refers to a QC towards the direction your character is facing.
QCB: Quarter Circle Back (214). Refers to a QC backwards from where your character is facing.
Rage: This refers to the effect that in otherwise identical scenarios, the opponent will get launched further if you, the one doing the hitting, are at a higher percent.
Red Hado: See Shakunetsu.
Sandbagging: Refers to the act of not using any form of DI nor controlling your char while in the air but rather letting is fall freely.
SD: Self Destruct. When you lose a stock by killing yourself.
Shakunetsu: The red “fire” multihit variation ofthe Hadouken.
Shield Breaker: Attackwhich, while not high in damage, has the property to easily break shields.
Smash: A powerful attack performed by pressing A and inputting a direction on the Dpad at the same time. Can be charged.
Sour Spot: The portion of the attack with the least 'knockback'.
Spike: Any attack that sends the opponent down.
SRK: Shoryuken
SSB: Refers to specials being done by pressing B rather than using the real inputs.
Stale Moves: If an attack is used such that it actually connects it will have been 'staled' and will do slightly less damage and knockback on subsequent uses. This effect will stack until the move is completely staled.
Stock: The lives each player has in a match of Smash.
Super Armor: Property of a move which places the character in a state where it will receive no knockback whatsoever though he may still take damage.
Sweet Spot: This can mean one of two things depending on the context. It is either the part of an attack that has the greatest effect ('knockback'), or it refers to when a character recovers so low in relation to the ledge that they barely grab it which maximizes their chances of avoiding attacks from someone on-stage.
T: Tap. Refers to tapping and releasing a button rapidly. Used exclusively for Ryu to differentiate between his commands.
Tatsu: Tatsumeki Sempu Kiaku or Whirlwind Kick.
Tilt: Refers to an attack performed by inputting a direction on the Dpad and then pressing A.
True: In Ryu’s case, it refers to his special being performed with the actual input rather than using B. Example. True hado refers to 236A
True Combo: A combo which cannot be escaped by any means, including DI.
Trump: Ledge mechanic in which a character grabbing the ledge is displaced by another one who grabs the ledge in his place. The “trumped” character is sent in a backwards arc and cannot do perform any action until the arc is complete.
Uncharged: Smash attack which is performed by tapping A.

1.1.1 Special Notations
A: Attack button.
B: Specials button.
Z: Grab
Dpad: The joystick used to input movement commands.
Dpad Directions: Used to quickly reference the direction of a tilt, throw, or special move in the dpad (for example: uthrow, bair, or fsmash).
F: Front or Forward
B: Back or Backward
U: Up
D: Down.
N: Neutral, no input of direction
Numerical Notations: Refers to the way of describing inputs with the dpad with numbers. It takes the image of the numerical keypad in your keyboard and it assumes that your character is always facing to the right. As follows:



Therefore, a Hado would be described as 236A. This means that the input for executing it is down, down-front, front, press A.

1.2 Reference Threads & Material

1.3 General Mechanics of Smash
1.3.1 Stale Moves

Smash is a game that rewards mixups of attacks and punishes repetition. In essence, the game has a memory of your last 10 successful attacks. If you use the same move three times in a row and they all connect, by the fourth time in a row you use it the damage done by the move, as well as the knockback will be reduced. This reduction will continue the more times you use the same move in a row until it reaches a pre-established minimum damage and knockback for that move. This means that if a smash attack usually kills at 120%, because you have been spamming it (using it too often and in a row) now it won’t kill until your opponent is at 150%.

There are two ways to reset your stale moves or make them fresh again. One is to die, the other is to stop using that move for three moves. This means that you have to perform any other three moves before you use your attack again. For example:


You have used dsmash 3 times in a row. On the fourth time you use it, the dmg and kb of it will be reduced. To avoid this, you must attack and connect 3 other attacks (dtilt, jab, utilt, or pounds). After connecting three other attacks, if you use dsmash again it will remain fresh.

1.3.2 Directional Influence

In smash you can alter the direction and trajectory of your character after he was hit by inputing a perpendicular direction on the dpad. This allows you to live longer since you’re changing the path your character would have taken to the blast zone for a longer one, and it also allows you to escape combos. For example, Ryu can combo uair from his dthrow. However, a player can DI away from the expected trajectory his character should have followed in order to avoid being hit by the uair after the dthrow. Many combos can be escaped with proper DI. Only true combos cannot be escaped.

In order to DI you must input the direction you want your character to take the moment you are hit by an attack and during hitstun.


1.4 Frame Data

1.5 Moveset Analysis
All moves were tested as per convention on Mario in Final Destination. These moves were not tested in training but rather in normal multiplayer so that they would be as accurate as possible in terms of damage and kb. That being said, Ryu was always at 0% so rage isn’t factored into the KO% thresholds. Di is also not factored in as nobody was actually using Mario. All moves are fresh which means that the KO thresholds are those of a fresh version of that move. Unless specified, Mario is always in mid FD which means that all KO thresholds are from the middle of FD.

I have also found that the T and H variations of Ryu’s tilts do not share stale status. This means that Hdtilt can be used to refresh your Tdtilt. The same applied to the normal jab combo and to Hjab. After executing a jab combo, Hjab will still remain fresh.

In order to determine whether a move Kos or not, the moves were tested up to 200% dmg. If by 200% it didn’t KO the opponent then the move is considered to not be a KO move.

1.5.1 Normal Grounded Attacks
T Jab 1

* 1-2%, weak upwards kb

T Jab 2

* 3%, weak upwards kb

T Jab 3

* 5-6%, medium horizontal kb

Total T Jab combo dmg

* 9% - 10%, does not KO

H Jab

* 9% - 10%, strong diagonal kb
* KOs at 150% from mid FD & 138% from ledge
* Due to the strong kb it doesn’t seem possible to combo this move with anything else. It seems to be meant as a finisher or a spacing tool to reset the neutral or send your opponent off stage.

T Ftilt

* 6% - 7%, medium diagonal kb, medium scaling
* Becomes a launcher from 50% onwards

H Ftilt

* 8% - 9% (1st hit 3% & 2nd hit 5% - 6%), strong horizontal kb
* Shield breaker

T Utilt

* 1% - 2%, very weak vertical kb, almost no kb growth
* Still combos into itself at 200% at least once
* True combos to a grab until 100%
* True combos to specials until 100%

H Utilt

* 11% - 12%, medium vertical kb
* Launcher
* KOs at 150%
* T Utilt true combos with H Utilt until 150%

T Dtilt

* 1% - 2%, weak horizontal kb
* Still combos into itself until 175% at least once
* True combos to a grab until 150%
* True combos to specials until 100%

H Dtilt

* 6% - 7%, medium horizontal kb
* True combos into Tatsu until 33%
* True combos into Shakunetsu until 43%
* True combos into Hado until 70%

Dash Attack

* 12% - 13% sweet spotted, medium diagonal kb
* 8% sour spotted, medium diagonal kb

1.5.2 Smash Attacks
Fsmash

* 14% - 16% uncharged, strong diagonal kb
* 20% - 23% charged
* KOs at 100% from mid FD when uncharged
* KOs at 80% from mid FD when uncharged
* KOs at 75% from mid FD when fully charged
* KOs at 50% from ledge when fully charged

Usmash

* 16% - 17% uncharged, strong vertical kb
* 22% - 24% charged
* Launcher
* KOs at 120% when uncharged
* KOs at 75% when fully charged

Dsmash

* 15% - 16% uncharged, medium diagonal kb
* 22% - 23% charged
* KOs at 150% when fully charged from mid FD

1.5.3 Aerials
All aerials were tested for KO % at FH height.

Nair

* 3% - 4% sour spotted, very weak kb
* 7% - 8% sweet spotted, medium kb
* Auto cancels
* Combos into moves until 20 when sweet spotted
* Combos into moves until 75 when sour spotted

Fair

* 7% sour spotted, weak horizontal kb
* 14% - 15% sweet spotted, strong diagonal kb
* KOs at 175% when sweet spotted

Bair

* 15% - 16%, strong horizontal kb
* KOs at 145%

Uair

* Two hits of 4% - 5% each, weak vertical kb with strong growth
* KOs at 160%

Dair

* 11% - 12%, weak kb when spike isn’t into effect
* Spike effect kick in at 55%
* While opponent is standing on the stage there is no spike effect no mattering the dmg %
* Can combo into T Utilt until 130%
* Can spike characters hanging from the ledge while Ryu is on the stage

1.5.4 Grabs & throws
Pound

* 1% - 2%

Dthrow

* 8% - 9%, medium vertical kb
* Launcher
* Shield Breaker
* KOs at approximately 160% but only with rage

Uthrow

* 7% - 8%, medium vertical kb
* Launcher

Fthrow

* 7% - 8%, medium diagonal kb
* Does not combo into Hado
* Without rage does not KO even at 200% at the ledge

Bthrow

* 11% - 12%, medium diagonal kb
* Does not combo
* Without rage does not KO even at 200% at the ledge

1.5.5 Specials
Specials share stale effect with themselves. This means that all Hados, no matter which one you did (true or SSB), share stale effects. The exception is Hado and Shakunetsu (Fire Hado) which don’t share stale effects. The strength of your special will depend on whether you tapped or held the button you used for the input and on whether you did a SSB special or a true special. You can use either A or B for true specials. Also, there is no difference between using A or B button when inputting true specials. The difference is only present between doing SSB specials or True Specials. You can also use Z (grab button) for true specials. This will ensure you get the weak version of that special regardless of whether you tapped or held the button.



Focus (DownB)

* B must be held to charge the special and go from Focus 1, to Focus 2 and Focus 3.
* Ryu will flash yellow every time he reaches a new focus level.
* Hold B for 0.5 secs to reach Focus 2 and 1 sec to reach Focus 3.
* Attack can be canceled only while B in being held by inputting a double dash in either direction front (66) or back (44). This is a FADC.
* FADC can be done in the air to stop momentum and change trajectory.
* The move has tremendous hitlag. Never finish the move unless it will connect. Cancel the move if it won’t.
* Even if it connects it has tremendous hitlag. Cancel the move as soon as it connects to cancel the lag and punish your opponent immediately.
* Focus can absorb one attack while you’re holding B. If you let go B Ryu will get hit and receive KB.
* If you are hit more than once, only the first hit will be absorbed. Further hits will damage Ryu.
* You can be grabbed at any moment while focusing.
* Focus attack can be reversed by tilting the dead in the opposite direction the moment you release B.
* Focus attack does not trigger counter attacks.

Focus 1

* 11% - 12%, medium diagonal kb, no kb growth

Focus 2

* 9% - 10%, no kb
* KOs if hits in the air at about 170%
* Slow crumple
* Shield Breaker

Focus 3

* 15%, no kb
* KOs if hits in the air at about 160%
* Full crumple
* Completely ignores shield

1.6 How to play Ryu
1.6.1 Playing the Neutral
Ryu IS space control.

With Ryu your mentality should shift from attacking their shield to force a defensive response, to establish midrange dominance with pokes and safe footsies.

You keep trying to play him like a pure smash character. He is not. He is a traditional fighting game character in a Smash game. He has elements of his own game and elements of this one.

Do not think about approaching. Think about closing space and setting up an optimal zone where you control the pace of the match. If you want some pure smash approaches then dash behind SH bair is solid. Dash shield cancel d-tilt or d-smash is good. But really you should be focused on limiting options not just ramming shields with your limbs.

Take it slow. Walk alot. ALOT. Lots of empty jumps. Ryu has strong options from empty hops. Hadouken is still a thing. Nair will shut down dash grabs. FADC can draw out responses or you can FA absorb a dash attack then net a crumple combo. If they throw something at you, then you have the option of true tatsu which when timed right can blow through any non counter type attack or trade with other invincible moves.

For that midrange game Shakunetsu and regular hadoukens are your main tools. Hadoukens are good for opponents in the air or SHing, and shakunetsu is good for opponents on the ground. Generally you want slow hadoukens for optimal space control and they will be harder to spot dodge and get around. You wanna force a block for shield damage. This is why Shakunetsu is important. They can powershield the first hit, but not the following hits. You want that shield damage. When they block a few of those they have to then start trying to get around them or they get shield poked for free. Then your neutral game really kicks in. Hasty attacks are easily punished with shoryu out of shield. Bad jump ins fall victim to strong jab. Dash grabbing can be dealt with just by rolling away and resetting your spacing or with short hop nair.

Ryu is pure control, footsies and reaction. Force your will onto the opponent and watch them destroy themselves.

Here is the only video of me so far. It's online and even though there is a little goofing off you can still see alot of the concepts at work.


1.6.2 Frame Traps
First off, what is a trap? A trap is a situation where the aggressor is in an advantage state such that the defender has limited options. By using certain attacks or taking certain actions in those situations, you can create an offense that is very difficult to get away from unscathed. In some traps the aggressor can even choose an action that MUST be dealt with or the defender will take damage. Choosing a poor response will result in taking damage and often being put into another trap situation or a stock loss. Choosing the correct response to the trap will often leave the aggressor at some type of advantage, usually positional so they lost nothing in attempting the trap. Traps are very high level, and take extensive knowledge of spacing as well as knowing the options of your opposition. Ryu's traps especially are not auto-pilot as he has tons of options for different situations. You have to know which one to use according to the situation, the trap, and your opponent. Read on plz.

Shakunetsu Hadouken Trap

This is Ryu's BnB from the Street Fighter series and it transitions into this game very nicely. This is a trap that occurs as a natural part of Ryu's gameplay because Hadoukens are such a huge part of his game. How the trap works will depend on your spacing as well as the action your opponent takes. To start it, throw a slow Shakunetsu Hadouken when you are about 5 to 6 character lengths away from your opponent. What you do now depends entirely on what they do.

1) If they take the damage from Shakunetsu
a. Re-adjust your spacing and throw another Shakunetsu. Safest and smartest thing to do if you want to press your advantage.
b. Dash in to close space and attempt a grab, dash attack, fair, etc.and transition to another trap.
Option a is of course the safer choice.

2) If they block
a. Throw another Shakunetsu. More shield damage for you

3) If they roll
a. If your spacing is on point, then when they roll they should be right in front of you. Either grab them and throw them back out, poke with strong jab, poke with d-smash or go for light tilt combos into srk. If they roll was late any of these options will be a free punish, but it's also spacing dependent. Throw is decent damage and will transition into another trap situation easily. This is my preferred go to option

4) If they jump
a. You can now choose to play a reactive punish/AA game or try to transition to another trap. Its really up to you and how good your reactions are as well as your opponents options. If you want to go defense, then walk under them and shield. This basically covers anything they might try offensively besides a command grab. If you want to play the AA game then adjust yourself so that Ryu is facing his opponent from the direction of their weakest aerial that has the least amount of coverage below them. This will allow him to challenge with an AA attack much more successfully. So for example vs say Greninja, you will want to be positioned in such a way that dair will whiff if he tries and Fair is a risky option. If he goes for Dair you get a free True Shoryu. Fair is punishable on landing and not safe at all. If you want to challenge them, again you want to challenge where they are weakest in the air. If they are weak from the front then meet them with a Fair or Bair from the front. Same for the back. If they are weak from below, meet them with a Uair. You may wish to attempt a Uair regardless because even if it whiffs Ryu can transition to part 2 of his basic air trap sequence. You may also try to bait a response with a quick jump then fast fall. If they air dodge, get them with a punish. Most likely a bair/fair or a tatsu.

5) If they double jump
a. See number 4, however you may wish to be more aggressive and meet them in the air. Since they now have no second jump a strong hit here may spell your opponents demise.

*Note* When Ryu's opponents jumps in response to Hadouken, this trap can lead to mix-ups between True Shoryu/grab/shield/jab or do nothing. Basically your opponent will have to guess between you attacking or doing nothing. Their options are usually just airdodge to avoid a potential attack or attack in hopes of stuffing a button you choose. Airdodge will beat alot of offense you may try but is very risky. A True Shoryu will beat anything and can cost them a stock at high percents. It's a deadly mix-up that favors Ryu heavily.

Air Trap

Very basic and effective trap. When your opponent is in the air above, chase them with a Uair. From there Ryu gets a nice option tree depending on what happens. Easy set-ups for this trap are from a tatsu on hit, SRK on hit at higher percents, u-throw and d-throw at higher percents. This trap works best on foes with bad dairs that are either slow or have poor hitboxes. The option tree is as follows.

1) If it hits
a. The trap resets itself

2) If they airdodge
a. You can tatsu in their direction and depending on their height, hitbox size and fall speed you will more then likely catch them and reset into another air trap.
b. You may choose a very safe and strong option of fast falling and throwing a hadouken to pressure your opponent and possibly even transition straight into a hadouken trap. You lose no momentum and you risk nothing. Great option.

3) If they jump
a. Fastfall and go for a re-trap.


Air Trap - Hadouken Version

This version of the trap is similar to the Uair trap, but there is less risk involved but also less direct reward. This trap leans more towards space control and more limiting of options. When your opponent is in the air, throw a true slow hadouken at them. For this trap I find regular hadoukens work best, not Shakunetsu. Spacing is essentially the same as it would be for the grounded Hadouken trap.

1) It it hits
a. Throw another. Simple stuff. Dash in for a grab or aerial if you are feeling fancy.

2) If it is airdodged
a. Throw another, but this time throw a Shakunetsu. Easy transition to a ground Hadouken Trap You may have to walk, dash or sh to reset your optimal spacing.
b. If the opponent is close enough, dash grab is a strong option. Fair as well or Tatsu.
c. If your opponent is high enough, you can attempt a Uair air trap or landing trap.


Landing Trap

Strong trap that can lead to a KO or good damage. When an opponent is about SH distance above the ground, do a SH Uair and fast fall after it comes out. This is a great trap to look for at kill percents for Ryu's True SRK at around 95%. This trap works best on opponents with poor or slow dairs. This is another basic trap that can lead to awesome outcomes.

1) If they air dodge
a. Tilt combos into True Shoryu for a KO or damage. Throwing is an ok option or U-smash for nice damage. Dash grab if your spacing was a little off

2) If they get hit by the Uair
a. Reset the trap or transition into a different one.

*Note* The weakness of this trap is that characters with high priority buttons can challenge Ryu. Characters with counters as well. Again though same as the hadouken trap, Ryu has True SRK to keep people honest and blow through w/e button they attempt to use to challenge Ryu. Focus Attack is also another solid option in traps since Ryu doesnt risk much. He can just dash cancel and then grab if his opponent didnt press a button. Or dash away if you are afraid and dont want to risk retaliation.


Ledge trap

Basic trap that everyone in the game has. When your opponent is on the ledge, space yourself just outside of their get-up attack. You have now effectively reduced their options greatly.

1) If they get up attack
a. Dash in True Shoryu or dash grab and throw them off to reset the trap

2) If they roll.
a. Throw them back out or True SRK for the KO

3) If they ledge jump
a. Pick a trap. Any trap. Air trap, Landing trap, Hadouken trap. I prefer to just back up and go for a nice Shakunetsu trap. Ol' reliable. Or Bair/Fair them in the face. W/e works.

4) If they normal get-up
a. Safest option by far. Shakunetsu is a mindlessly safe and easy answer that lets you stay in control. SH back Shakunetsu is most likely what you will want to do. Dash grab if you know they will do this or you know they will shield after climbing back on stage.

1.6.3 Recovery Options
Ryu is a character that may seem to have a poor to mediocre recovery but he is actually quite versatile off stage. His H SRK can travel almost as much (if not exactly as much) as Marth’s dolphin slash, and while it is not as fast, if you do True SRk you gain super armor which mean you won’t be gimped nor stage spiked. You can also stop your momentum in the air with a FADC and change your trajectory to help yourself approach he stage. Conversely, you can use your Tatsu to help you approach without losing much altitude and thus save your DJ for more critical situation. If your opponent goes after you to try a gimp, you can cover your approach with a Hado (which will also stop your fall and momentum, and allow you to float for a split second) or just tank their attack with a well-timed Focus attack which should then be canceled.


Check out the guide on “How to Recover” by Sasook that I have annexed below. It is a bit old and it is about Brawl, but all the principle still apply and they will help you make it back to the stage. Learn Ryu’s options off stage, feel comfortable with them by going to training and seeing how low you can go and still make it back; how far you can go and still make it back; how many attacks (nair or dair) can you do off stage and still make it back; and can you execute a successful focus attack and still make it back, if so, from which height before you basically SD. Learn his options, be comfortable off stage, and read that guide (most important tip, save that DJ) and you’ll see that Ryu can be an intimidating off stage as on the neutral.

1.7 Additional Material


1.8 Acknowledgements


I want to thank everybody who contributed either directly or indirectly to this guide. So special thanks to @Blubba_Pinecone for helping with the glossary; to @Fox Is Openly Deceptive for his wonderful Smash Dictionary; to @Aerodrome , @LordWilliam1234, and @Trifroze for the frame data; @sasook for writing the best recovery guide ever conceived by human minds; Arkive for his eternal DI tutorial video; and BengalsRZ for his explanation on DI. Thanks to @Oblivion129 for his proofreading and suggestions, as well as to @ PokemonyeWest PokemonyeWest . Thanks to Rush Hour Smash for their amazing tutorials on the basics of smash, and to @Darkmusician for his great video and find on ledge snap vulnerability. Thanks to @ ArccJPO ArccJPO for his find on Focus 2 and 3 KO capabilities. Huge thanks to @Emblem Lord for his fantastic advise on how to play the neutral and on frame traps.
 
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PokemonyeWest

Smash Journeyman
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#4
I read this guide earlier this morning, and this is definitely something all Ryu players no matter their experience level should check out. Let's dispel any and all misinformation about Ryu!
 

Ryu_Ken

Ace Adventurer and Truth Seeker
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#7
Good guide, @ Elessar Elessar ! This is a well-written guide, and all newcomers should definitely pick this up!
Ken mains are cool, btw.
 

Kaladin

Stormblessed
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Toobu_me
#11
This is excellent data, don't get me wrong, but there's little info on how to actually play Ryu. For instance, what should our neutral look like? But that will likely come with time.

Very helpful, regardless.
 

Elessar

Nouyons TO
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Veritiel
#12
This is excellent data, don't get me wrong, but there's little info on how to actually play Ryu. For instance, what should our neutral look like? But that will likely come with time.

Very helpful, regardless.
Yes it will come with time. As of now, Ryu's meta is still a newborn, not even in infancy, so anything we say is still a matter of theory crafting mostly which should go in the meta thread imho. Once we have a more established tried and true gameplan I'll include it here. As I said, it is a work in progress that I rushed to publish so that people could at least be informed as to the KO thresholds, dmg data, and game mechanics.

Anyways, another even more complete and thorough guide which includes even stage choices is on the works by @ PokemonyeWest PokemonyeWest in collaboration with others (me amongst them). This one is like a raw data draft so we all have at least a solid foundation on which to theory craft and test things.
 

cool mario bros

Smash Champion
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srmario
#13
Wow, I had no idea about the stale moves part. I was fighting my friend yesterday, and he waan't dying. i probably was spamming a smash attack or something. This info will be very useful for me in the future. Anyways, great guide! I can not wait for more info to be added, I would like to get better at Ryu and smash in general.
 

Elessar

Nouyons TO
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Veritiel
#15
Wow, I had no idea about the stale moves part. I was fighting my friend yesterday, and he waan't dying. i probably was spamming a smash attack or something. This info will be very useful for me in the future. Anyways, great guide! I can not wait for more info to be added, I would like to get better at Ryu and smash in general.
Yeah I figured that many people might not know about stale moves, that's why I decided to include it. It is a big part of smash since you need to know what your KO moves are and keep them as fresh as possible, so that as soon as your opponent reaches the KO threshold you can take their stock easily with your KO moves. That's why it's important to know which moves are spammable moves (In the case of Ryu all Tap normal attacks) and which have to be kept as fresh as possible. As I said, smash is about mixups. Keep yourself unpredictable, never repeat the same action too many times in a row and you'll see your game explode.

Edit to the Guide: More tutorial videos added.
 
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ArccJPO

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ArccJPO
#16
@ Elessar Elessar , just found it. Fully charged FA can KO Opponents with 160-170%. They must be air borne for it to work. Tried out with Marth on the middle of FD.
 

Dumbfire

Sex? Yes, I'm familiar with the theory
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#17
Wandering warrior? More like, wandering jew!

Day and night my toils redouble,
Never nearer to the goal;
Night and day, I feel the trouble
Of the Wanderer in my soul.​
 

Elessar

Nouyons TO
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Veritiel
#18
@ Elessar Elessar , just found it. Fully charged FA can KO Opponents with 160-170%. They must be air borne for it to work. Tried out with Marth on the middle of FD.
Thanks for the info. I'll test it when I get home and if it checks out I'll include it. Thanks a lot.
 

DD_

Smash Journeyman
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#19
Sorry to be nitpicky however to prevent the spread of misinformation: what you have listed under the heading of "Frame Trap" are not frame traps at all but rather setups.
 

Elessar

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Veritiel
#20
Sorry to be nitpicky however to prevent the spread of misinformation: what you have listed under the heading of "Frame Trap" are not frame traps at all but rather setups.
What would be the difference between a frame trap and a setup? Just to be sure since I always understood them as being essentially the same.
 

DD_

Smash Journeyman
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#21
What would be the difference between a frame trap and a setup? Just to be sure since I always understood them as being essentially the same.
A frame trap is a string that isn't a true string but has high frame advantage. They are used when you know your opponent is mashing attack buttons/throw with the aim of hitting them while their mashed move is in startup because you are at advantage.

A Setup is what you have described in the 'Frame Trap" section. A scenario where you have an answer for all of the opponents options.
 

GX2

Smash Rookie
Joined
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Messages
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#22


Foreword


This guide is meant to serve as an introduction not only to Ryu, but to smash and its competitive scene in general for all newcomers. As such it will cover some general mechanics such as Stale Moves and DI. Finally, if you’re truly a newcomer, I would heartily recommend you read the Smash Dictionary in order to learn Smash terminology. While this guide does include a glossary on some Smash terms, as well as Ryu specific terms, it is still a good idea to acquire as much of our community lingo as possible. No Johns.

This guide is also a continuous work in progress, so any feedback or contribution is more than welcome.

Table of Content

1.1 Glossary of Terms
1.1.1 Special Notations
1.2 Reference Threads & Material
1.3 General Mechanics of Smash
1.3.1 Stale Moves
1.3.2 Directional Influence
1.4 Frame Data
1.5 Moveset Analysis
1.5.1 Normal Grounded Attacks
1.5.2 Smash Attacks
1.5.3 Aerials
1.5.4 Grabs & throws
1.5.5 Specials
1.5.6 Recovery Options
1.6 How to play Ryu
1.6.1 Playing the Neutral
1.6.2 Frame Traps
1.6.3 Recovery Options
1.7 Additional Material
1.7.1 Tutorial Videos
1.7.2 Tutorial Threads
1.8 Acknowledgements

1.1 Glossary of Terms
Use ctrl+f to find the terms you seek more easily
Auto Cancel: A move that cancels itself without any input from the player being required.
A-Stick: Setting the C-stick to “Attacks” rather than “Smash”.
AT: Advanced Technique.
Blast Zone: The invisible line outside of the visual field the character needs to cross in order to lose a stock.
B-Stick: Setting the C-stick to “Specials” rather than “Smash”.
Cancel: End an action prematurely with another action. They can be performed in many different ways, usually but not always requiring secondary (or more) input from the original cancelable action. Examples are, dash cancels, edge cancels, L-cancels, auto-cancels.
Charged: In Smash, if you perform a Smash attack and hold the attack button you can charge the attack thus making it hit harder for more damage and knockback.
Combo: Two or more attacks which can connect before the opponent leaves hitstun. In Smash, combos are not guaranteed since they can be escaped through DI.
C-Stick: The yellow stick in the controller usually set to smash attacks.
DI: Stands forDirectional Influence. It refers to slightly altering the direction/trajectory you get hit in by holding the joystick in any perpendicular direction at any point before or instantly after you get hit with an attack (to be precise, you need to be holding a direction as your character goes from being in 'hitlag' to 'hitstun'). You cannot alter the distance that you get hit by using DI, only the angle you get launched at.
DP: Dragon Punch or Shoryuken.
DJ: Double Jump. The jump done while airborne.
Dmg: Damage.
FADC: Focus Attack Dash Cancel.
FF: Fast Fall. Pressing down while on the air in order to fall faster.
FH: Full Hop. The maximum height a character can obtain with a single jump.
Fire Hado: See Shakunetsu.
Focus 1: Ryu’s DownB special released as soon as the command is made.
Focus 2: Ryu’s DownB special released after is flashes once.
Focus 3: Ryu’s DownB special released after it flashes for a second time.
Footstool: Refers tot he act of jumping on the head of your opponent's char. Your char just higher (even if you have already used your DJ) while their character is sent tumbling down in a state of helplessness.
Free Fall: A state in which your character cannot do anything while in the air except move left and right. For example, this occurs after using most characters’ 'Up specials'.
Fresh: A move which is not stale.
Gimp: The taking of a stock, usually at a low percent, by interrupting/negating a character's recovery.
H: Hold. It refers to pressing and holding a button. Used exclusively for Ryu to differentiate between his commands.
Hado: Hadouken
HC: Half-circle. Input in the Dpad 41236 or 63214 depending the direction your character is facing.
Helpless: See Free Fall.
Hit Confirm: To confirm visually through the use of a quick safe attack that the opponent is being hit before committing to a stronger unsafe attack.
Hit Lag: The period of time that your character must wait in addition to normal animation time upon an attack connecting with another tangible object (shields, characters, certain items and stage objects). No action can be executed during hit lag.
Hit Stun: The period of time after being hit during which a character is unable to do anything.
Jab: Basic attack in Smash. Done by pressing A once.
KB: See Knockback.
Knockback: The property of any attack that makes the character being hit actually get hit away. It refers to the direction and distance a characters is sent away.
Knockback growth: The property of an attack that is dependent on the percent of the character, so it will hit them further and further away the higher their percent is.
KO: Knock Out. In Smash it refers to taking a stock from your opponent.
Ledge Snap: Property of some ledges in which a character will be attracted to the ledge “magnetically” and he will grab the ledge from a distance it should not be possible.
Landing Lag: The period of time during which, upon landing either after or during an aerial attack, a character is unable to execute any action.
Negative Edge: Inputting a command by releasing a button rather than pressing it. For example: press and hold A, perform a QCF and then release A for a Hadouken to be executed.
Neutral: The period of the game during which both characters are on stage, neither of them having an advantage of location.
Off Stage: When a character has been knocked off stage and is trying to return to it.
OoS: Out of Shield. Refers to certain moves being able to be done without having to let go of the shield button to drop your shield and wait before being able to attack. Examples of these are Grab, Item Throw and Jump.
Perfect Shield: Raising your shield at precisely the right moment so that the attack hits it at the same time the shield comes out. The shield suffers no lag or damage and the character can react faster than he would be able to had he just shielded the attack. Ryu performs his parry animation when done properly.
Pound: Attacks done while grabbing an opponent.
PS: See Perfect Shield.
QC: Quarter Circle (236 or 214). Refers to either QCF or QCB.
QCF: Quarter Circle Forward (236). Refers to a QC towards the direction your character is facing.
QCB: Quarter Circle Back (214). Refers to a QC backwards from where your character is facing.
Rage: This refers to the effect that in otherwise identical scenarios, the opponent will get launched further if you, the one doing the hitting, are at a higher percent.
Red Hado: See Shakunetsu.
Sandbagging: Refers to the act of not using any form of DI nor controlling your char while in the air but rather letting is fall freely.
SD: Self Destruct. When you lose a stock by killing yourself.
Shakunetsu: The red “fire” multihit variation ofthe Hadouken.
Shield Breaker: Attackwhich, while not high in damage, has the property to easily break shields.
Smash: A powerful attack performed by pressing A and inputting a direction on the Dpad at the same time. Can be charged.
Sour Spot: The portion of the attack with the least 'knockback'.
Spike: Any attack that sends the opponent down.
SRK: Shoryuken
SSB: Refers to specials being done by pressing B rather than using the real inputs.
Stale Moves: If an attack is used such that it actually connects it will have been 'staled' and will do slightly less damage and knockback on subsequent uses. This effect will stack until the move is completely staled.
Stock: The lives each player has in a match of Smash.
Super Armor: Property of a move which places the character in a state where it will receive no knockback whatsoever though he may still take damage.
Sweet Spot: This can mean one of two things depending on the context. It is either the part of an attack that has the greatest effect ('knockback'), or it refers to when a character recovers so low in relation to the ledge that they barely grab it which maximizes their chances of avoiding attacks from someone on-stage.
T: Tap. Refers to tapping and releasing a button rapidly. Used exclusively for Ryu to differentiate between his commands.
Tatsu: Tatsumeki Sempu Kiaku or Whirlwind Kick.
Tilt: Refers to an attack performed by inputting a direction on the Dpad and then pressing A.
True: In Ryu’s case, it refers to his special being performed with the actual input rather than using B. Example. True hado refers to 236A
True Combo: A combo which cannot be escaped by any means, including DI.
Trump: Ledge mechanic in which a character grabbing the ledge is displaced by another one who grabs the ledge in his place. The “trumped” character is sent in a backwards arc and cannot do perform any action until the arc is complete.
Uncharged: Smash attack which is performed by tapping A.

1.1.1 Special Notations
A: Attack button.
B: Specials button.
Z: Grab
Dpad: The joystick used to input movement commands.
Dpad Directions: Used to quickly reference the direction of a tilt, throw, or special move in the dpad (for example: uthrow, bair, or fsmash).
F: Front or Forward
B: Back or Backward
U: Up
D: Down.
N: Neutral, no input of direction
Numerical Notations: Refers to the way of describing inputs with the dpad with numbers. It takes the image of the numerical keypad in your keyboard and it assumes that your character is always facing to the right. As follows:



Therefore, a Hado would be described as 236A. This means that the input for executing it is down, down-front, front, press A.

1.2 Reference Threads & Material

1.3 General Mechanics of Smash
1.3.1 Stale Moves

Smash is a game that rewards mixups of attacks and punishes repetition. In essence, the game has a memory of your last 10 successful attacks. If you use the same move three times in a row and they all connect, by the fourth time in a row you use it the damage done by the move, as well as the knockback will be reduced. This reduction will continue the more times you use the same move in a row until it reaches a pre-established minimum damage and knockback for that move. This means that if a smash attack usually kills at 120%, because you have been spamming it (using it too often and in a row) now it won’t kill until your opponent is at 150%.

There are two ways to reset your stale moves or make them fresh again. One is to die, the other is to stop using that move for three moves. This means that you have to perform any other three moves before you use your attack again. For example:


You have used dsmash 3 times in a row. On the fourth time you use it, the dmg and kb of it will be reduced. To avoid this, you must attack and connect 3 other attacks (dtilt, jab, utilt, or pounds). After connecting three other attacks, if you use dsmash again it will remain fresh.

1.3.2 Directional Influence

In smash you can alter the direction and trajectory of your character after he was hit by inputing a perpendicular direction on the dpad. This allows you to live longer since you’re changing the path your character would have taken to the blast zone for a longer one, and it also allows you to escape combos. For example, Ryu can combo uair from his dthrow. However, a player can DI away from the expected trajectory his character should have followed in order to avoid being hit by the uair after the dthrow. Many combos can be escaped with proper DI. Only true combos cannot be escaped.

In order to DI you must input the direction you want your character to take the moment you are hit by an attack and during hitstun.


1.4 Frame Data

1.5 Moveset Analysis
All moves were tested as per convention on Mario in Final Destination. These moves were not tested in training but rather in normal multiplayer so that they would be as accurate as possible in terms of damage and kb. That being said, Ryu was always at 0% so rage isn’t factored into the KO% thresholds. Di is also not factored in as nobody was actually using Mario. All moves are fresh which means that the KO thresholds are those of a fresh version of that move. Unless specified, Mario is always in mid FD which means that all KO thresholds are from the middle of FD.

I have also found that the T and H variations of Ryu’s tilts do not share stale status. This means that Hdtilt can be used to refresh your Tdtilt. The same applied to the normal jab combo and to Hjab. After executing a jab combo, Hjab will still remain fresh.

In order to determine whether a move Kos or not, the moves were tested up to 200% dmg. If by 200% it didn’t KO the opponent then the move is considered to not be a KO move.

1.5.1 Normal Grounded Attacks
T Jab 1

* 1-2%, weak upwards kb

T Jab 2

* 3%, weak upwards kb

T Jab 3

* 5-6%, medium horizontal kb

Total T Jab combo dmg

* 9% - 10%, does not KO

H Jab

* 9% - 10%, strong diagonal kb
* KOs at 150% from mid FD & 138% from ledge
* Due to the strong kb it doesn’t seem possible to combo this move with anything else. It seems to be meant as a finisher or a spacing tool to reset the neutral or send your opponent off stage.

T Ftilt

* 6% - 7%, medium diagonal kb, medium scaling
* Becomes a launcher from 50% onwards

H Ftilt

* 8% - 9% (1st hit 3% & 2nd hit 5% - 6%), strong horizontal kb
* Shield breaker

T Utilt

* 1% - 2%, very weak vertical kb, almost no kb growth
* Still combos into itself at 200% at least once
* True combos to a grab until 100%
* True combos to specials until 100%

H Utilt

* 11% - 12%, medium vertical kb
* Launcher
* KOs at 150%
* T Utilt true combos with H Utilt until 150%

T Dtilt

* 1% - 2%, weak horizontal kb
* Still combos into itself until 175% at least once
* True combos to a grab until 150%
* True combos to specials until 100%

H Dtilt

* 6% - 7%, medium horizontal kb
* True combos into Tatsu until 33%
* True combos into Shakunetsu until 43%
* True combos into Hado until 70%

Dash Attack

* 12% - 13% sweet spotted, medium diagonal kb
* 8% sour spotted, medium diagonal kb

1.5.2 Smash Attacks
Fsmash

* 14% - 16% uncharged, strong diagonal kb
* 20% - 23% charged
* KOs at 100% from mid FD when uncharged
* KOs at 80% from mid FD when uncharged
* KOs at 75% from mid FD when fully charged
* KOs at 50% from ledge when fully charged

Usmash

* 16% - 17% uncharged, strong vertical kb
* 22% - 24% charged
* Launcher
* KOs at 120% when uncharged
* KOs at 75% when fully charged

Dsmash

* 15% - 16% uncharged, medium diagonal kb
* 22% - 23% charged
* KOs at 150% when fully charged from mid FD

1.5.3 Aerials
All aerials were tested for KO % at FH height.

Nair

* 3% - 4% sour spotted, very weak kb
* 7% - 8% sweet spotted, medium kb
* Auto cancels
* Combos into moves until 20 when sweet spotted
* Combos into moves until 75 when sour spotted

Fair

* 7% sour spotted, weak horizontal kb
* 14% - 15% sweet spotted, strong diagonal kb
* KOs at 175% when sweet spotted

Bair

* 15% - 16%, strong horizontal kb
* KOs at 145%

Uair

* Two hits of 4% - 5% each, weak vertical kb with strong growth
* KOs at 160%

Dair

* 11% - 12%, weak kb when spike isn’t into effect
* Spike effect kick in at 55%
* While opponent is standing on the stage there is no spike effect no mattering the dmg %
* Can combo into T Utilt until 130%
* Can spike characters hanging from the ledge while Ryu is on the stage

1.5.4 Grabs & throws
Pound

* 1% - 2%

Dthrow

* 8% - 9%, medium vertical kb
* Launcher
* Shield Breaker
* KOs at approximately 160% but only with rage

Uthrow

* 7% - 8%, medium vertical kb
* Launcher

Fthrow

* 7% - 8%, medium diagonal kb
* Does not combo into Hado
* Without rage does not KO even at 200% at the ledge

Bthrow

* 11% - 12%, medium diagonal kb
* Does not combo
* Without rage does not KO even at 200% at the ledge

1.5.5 Specials
Specials share stale effect with themselves. This means that all Hados, no matter which one you did (true or SSB), share stale effects. The exception is Hado and Shakunetsu (Fire Hado) which don’t share stale effects. The strength of your special will depend on whether you tapped or held the button you used for the input and on whether you did a SSB special or a true special. You can use either A or B for true specials. Also, there is no difference between using A or B button when inputting true specials. The difference is only present between doing SSB specials or True Specials. You can also use Z (grab button) for true specials. This will ensure you get the weak version of that special regardless of whether you tapped or held the button.



Focus (DownB)

* B must be held to charge the special and go from Focus 1, to Focus 2 and Focus 3.
* Ryu will flash yellow every time he reaches a new focus level.
* Hold B for 0.5 secs to reach Focus 2 and 1 sec to reach Focus 3.
* Attack can be canceled only while B in being held by inputting a double dash in either direction front (66) or back (44). This is a FADC.
* FADC can be done in the air to stop momentum and change trajectory.
* The move has tremendous hitlag. Never finish the move unless it will connect. Cancel the move if it won’t.
* Even if it connects it has tremendous hitlag. Cancel the move as soon as it connects to cancel the lag and punish your opponent immediately.
* Focus can absorb one attack while you’re holding B. If you let go B Ryu will get hit and receive KB.
* If you are hit more than once, only the first hit will be absorbed. Further hits will damage Ryu.
* You can be grabbed at any moment while focusing.
* Focus attack can be reversed by tilting the dead in the opposite direction the moment you release B.
* Focus attack does not trigger counter attacks.

Focus 1

* 11% - 12%, medium diagonal kb, no kb growth

Focus 2

* 9% - 10%, no kb
* KOs if hits in the air at about 170%
* Slow crumple
* Shield Breaker

Focus 3

* 15%, no kb
* KOs if hits in the air at about 160%
* Full crumple
* Completely ignores shield

1.6 How to play Ryu
1.6.1 Playing the Neutral

1.6.2 Frame Traps

1.6.3 Recovery Options
Ryu is a character that may seem to have a poor to mediocre recovery but he is actually quite versatile off stage. His H SRK can travel almost as much (if not exactly as much) as Marth’s dolphin slash, and while it is not as fast, if you do True SRk you gain super armor which mean you won’t be gimped nor stage spiked. You can also stop your momentum in the air with a FADC and change your trajectory to help yourself approach he stage. Conversely, you can use your Tatsu to help you approach without losing much altitude and thus save your DJ for more critical situation. If your opponent goes after you to try a gimp, you can cover your approach with a Hado (which will also stop your fall and momentum, and allow you to float for a split second) or just tank their attack with a well-timed Focus attack which should then be canceled.


Check out the guide on “How to Recover” by Sasook that I have annexed below. It is a bit old and it is about Brawl, but all the principle still apply and they will help you make it back to the stage. Learn Ryu’s options off stage, feel comfortable with them by going to training and seeing how low you can go and still make it back; how far you can go and still make it back; how many attacks (nair or dair) can you do off stage and still make it back; and can you execute a successful focus attack and still make it back, if so, from which height before you basically SD. Learn his options, be comfortable off stage, and read that guide (most important tip, save that DJ) and you’ll see that Ryu can be an intimidating off stage as on the neutral.

1.7 Additional Material


1.8 Acknowledgements


I want to thank everybody who contributed either directly or indirectly to this guide. So special thanks to @Blubba_Pinecone for helping with the glossary; to @Fox Is Openly Deceptive for his wonderful Smash Dictionary; to @Aerodrome , @LordWilliam1234, and @Trifroze for the frame data; @sasook for writing the best recovery guide ever conceived by human minds; Arkive for his eternal DI tutorial video; and BengalsRZ for his explanation on DI. Thanks to @Oblivion129 for his proofreading and suggestions, as well as to @ PokemonyeWest PokemonyeWest . Thanks to Rush Hour Smash for their amazing tutorials on the basics of smash, and to @Darkmusician for his great video and find on ledge snap vulnerability. Thanks to @ ArccJPO ArccJPO for his find on Focus 2 and 3 KO capabilities. Huge thanks to @Emblem Lord for his fantastic advise on how to play the neutral and on frame traps.
Pretty informative thanks for posting
 
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