Cancel and Movement Properties
These are Unique Attacks, Special Moves, or Desperation Moves that can be performed on the ground and in the air.
These are Throws, Unique Attacks, Special Moves, or Desperation Moves that can only be performed in the air.
Most characters have Normal Moves that can actually chain into themselves or other Chain Cancelable Normal Moves. Not every character has this, though.
Normal Moves with this property can be canceled into Unique Attacks, Special Moves, Desperation Moves and Neomaxes.
Normal Moves with this property can be canceled into Special Moves, Desperation Moves and Neomaxes but not Unique Attacks. These moves can also be canceled into Desperation Moves.
Normal Moves with this property can be canceled into Desperation Moves or Neomaxes but not Unique Attacks or Special Moves. Special Moves with this property can be canceled into Desperation Moves but cannot be Drive Canceled.
Special Moves with this property can be canceled into other Special Moves at the cost of 50% Drive meter. These moves can also be canceled into Desperation Moves.
Desperation Moves with this property can be canceled into a Neomax when Hyperdrive mode is activated.
These are Normal Moves or Special Moves or even Desperation Moves that must be blocked while crouching.
These are Normal Moves or Special Moves or Desperation Moves that must be blocked while standing.
These are moves that cannot be blocked at all. Ralf's Galactica Phantom is unblockable after being charged up all the way.
Ground Throws cannot be blocked. Ground Throws only connect on grounded opponents who are not in Hit Stun or Block Stun. Command Throws however, can be comboed into on an opponent in Hit Stun.
Air Throws only connect on opponents in the air and also cannot be blocked. Air Throws can only be comboed into when the opponent is placed into a juggle state.
These are special moves that cause an airborne opponent to fall back a neutral standing position rather than getting knocked down, similarly to when they are hit out of the air by most normals.
Attacks that cause a Hard Knock-Down will put the enemy into a knocked down state where they cannot Tech Roll.
Attacks that cause a Soft Knock-Down will put the enemy into a knocked down state where they can tech roll freely.
Certain Command Normal Moves on Counter-Hit, Special Moves on Counter-Hit and EX-Special Moves will cause a Wall Bounce on the opponent when they hit. Wall Bounces can only occur once per combo, however, so a second move with Wall Bounce property connecting in a combo will just cause a Soft Knock-Down instead. The opponent won't even touch the wall at all.
Some moves, when they connect, cause the opponent to slowly crumple to the floor. When this occurs, they are freely comboable up until they hit the ground, but they are considered airborne. Thus the first hit that connects on them will pop them into the air. When they finish the crumple and hit the ground, they are considered in Floored State for about half a second before they can escape with a Roll. But even when it looks like they are fully Floored, you can actually hit them with any move that reaches them and it'll pop them off the ground. It's only for that very brief half of a second that you need to hit them with an OTG.
This is a property where the opponent twirls around and are vulnerable to attacks, but they don't stagger for very long, especially compared to Crumples which last very long. But any hit on the opponent keeps them grounded, unlike Crumples, so you can perform whichever ground combo on the opponent you want.
These moves have some invulnerability frames at the start of the moves, making them ideal for overriding the attacks from your opponents.
These moves have invulnerability to moves with low attacking hitboxes.
These moves have invulnerability to moves with high attacking hitboxes.
Some moves are armored and can absorb hits without stopping. Maxima's Vapor Cannon and many EX-Special Moves such as Ralf's Burning Hammer, for example, can pass through hits from the opponent.
These are moves that will trigger attacks only when struck by the opponent. A lot of Counters counter only moves of a specific height, such as the Light and Heavy versions of Elizabeth's Reverie-Jere (Light Kick counters high attacks, Heavy Kick counters mid and low attacks). Some Counters will counter any height, such as Goro's Kyouten Douchi.
There are some moves that are tagged with a Projectile Absorbing property. K's Ein Trigger, for example will destroy projectiles on contact.
There are some moves that are Projectile Reflectors. Whenever a Projectile strikes these moves, they are bounced back at the opponent.
There are some moves that will pass straight through projectiles when executed.
Moves that have the Anywhere Juggle property can juggle opponents, even when they are in regular knockdown state, or reset state. The prime example of moves with this property are Raiden's Dropkick and Elisabeth's Grand Rafale.
Controller Motion Terminology
Quarter circle forward
Quarter circle back
Half circle forward
Half circle back
Dragon-punch type motion. Forward, down, down/forward
Reverse dragon-punch type motion. Back, down, down/back
Commonly Used Jargon
Hit Stun and Block Stun
Two terms will be used a lot in this guide: Hit Stun and Block Stun. If you notice, whenever you land an attack on the opponent, the opponent gets "stuck" in a state. When you hit them, they go into an animation of reeling from getting hit. When they block your attack, they get stuck in a blocking pose for a fixed amount of time.
These are what are referred to as Hit Stun and Block Stun. Hit Stun is the concept that, when hit, you are stuck in the reel animation for a while. Any hits that connect during your Hit Stun are considered a hit that combos on you. And Block Stun is the concept that, when you block an attack, you are stuck in the block pose for a while. Any attack that connects on you during Block Stun is considered a true Block String. These are very important concepts to know about, and they will be talked about a lot throughout this guide.
The word "Frame" is going to be used a lot in this guide. We're going to be talking about Active Frames, Frame Advantage, animation frames, etc. etc. So without understanding what a frame is, you're going to get very lost very quickly. The easiest way to understand frames is to think about everything that happens on the screen as a cartoon. In a cartoon, you have to draw one picture at a time so that, when played in rapid succession, each picture creates an animation. Each of these pictures can be called an animation frame.
That's what happens on the screen in The King of Fighters XIII. Every movement a character makes, every attack they perform goes through a set of what you can call an animation frame. So some moves are made up of 20 animation frames. Some moves are made up of as many as 200 frames. This is all we are referring to when we talk about frames. And keep in mind that The King of Fighters XIII is a game that outputs 60 frames per second. So if we say something like "there is a 6 frame window you can perform this action," that means you have 1/10th of a second to perform the action.
In the arcade versions of KOF, the labels used for the buttons follow a simple alphabetical lettering system. However, in the console releases, these labels are not preserved. Because KOF originates from the arcades, the community chooses to use the same labels that the arcade releases do. These may be confusing at first, but in the interest of consistent terminology across the community, it is important to learn them.
= LP / Light Punch
= LK / Light Kick
= HP / Heavy Punch
= HK / Heavy Kick
Combo Notation and Shorthand
Browsing the combo sections may be difficult to understand at first so here's some tips to help you understand what's going on.
- st. is short for (far) standing, cl. for close standing, cr. for crouching, j. for jumping, nj. for neutral (upward) jumping, h. for hopping, sj. for super jumping, and hh. for hyper hopping.
- P refers to punch (A or C) and K refers to kick (B or D).
- Two buttons written together (e.g. AC) implies that the buttons should be pressed simultaneously.
- Motions or directions are written in lowercase followed by '+' and a button press.
- A comma (,) means to let one move finish recovering before the next action.
- > is used to notate natural follow-ups.
- xx refers to canceling normals and command normals into specials or canceling specials into supers.
- When you see (HD) it refers to canceling the attack into Hyperdrive Mode by pressing + together.
- Similarly, (DC) refers to a Drive Cancel and (HDC) stands for Hyperdrive Cancel which is performed the same way.
- When chaining light attacks or comboing a cancelable normal into a command normal, the cancel is usually not notated, e.g. cl.C df+D for Kyo, which is a direct cancel but is not listed as cl.C xx df+D.
- Watch for moves separated by commas when first reading a combo as it indicates a link, not a cancel. Daimon's cr.B, hcb,f+P combo must be timed as a link as cr.B will never cancel into specials.
Got a request for the definition for particular jargon you don't understand? Use the talk page to let us know!