Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3/Firebrand

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Umvc3 firebrand face.jpg

Firebrand was originally a villain in Ghosts n' Goblins who fought Arthur and is part of a demon race known as Red Arremers. Though eventually he got his own game called Gargoyal's Quest and Demon Crest, he is hailed as a hero among his race.

In a nutshell

Firebrand uses flight mixups and projectiles to open an opponent's defenses. While he may not deal much damage, his combos are quite long, and his crossups, divekick, and ability to swoop through the opponent make it so he can frequently start new combos every few seconds. When his abilities are boosted by his speed boost hyper, he becomes one of the fastest and hardest to hit characters in the game, especially with X-Factor activated. However, perhaps one of the strongest abilities in the game is his ability to unblockable an opponent by charging Demon Missile H fully. If you pair him with an assist such as Super Skrull's Tenderizer, Ironman's Repulsor or Amaterasu's Cold Star, you can literally lock an opponent in to their death.

Check out this Firebrand Guide by Kresent for a detailed overview.

Alternate Colors

Firebrand colors.jpg

1. Default Firebrand color (red/blue)

2. "Capcom" colors (blue/yellow)

3. "Yield sign" colors (yellow/white)

4. "Villan/Blackheart" colors (black/red)

5. "Gargoyle statue" color (dark green)

6. "Green Goblin" colors (bright green/purple)

7. "Galactus' Heralds" color (shiny silver)

8. "Red Arremer King" DLC costume

Players to Watch

ApologyMan, Kresent, Zak Bennett, Udaterasu, SkillzDatKillz

Wiki Contributors

Kresent, EMC

Character Vitals

Double Jump:
Air Dash:
Air Dash/Jump count:
Level 1
Level 2
Level 3
X-Factor Damage Boost:
15.0 %
35.0 %
55.0 %
X-Factor Speed Boost:
25.0 %
35.0 %
45.0 %
X-Factor Duration:
10 s
15 s
20 s
L Attacks
M Attacks
H Attacks
Special Moves
Hyper Combos
10 %
10 %
10 %
10 %
35 %
X-Factor Lvl 1:
35 %
35 %
35 %
35 %
35 %
X-Factor Lvl 2:
35 %
35 %
35 %
35 %
35 %
X-Factor Lvl 3:
35 %
35 %
35 %
35 %
35 %

Video Walkthrough


X-Factor Combos, X-Factor level 3 by Mikeydactyl
DHC to Dormammu


TAC glitch
x-factor level 3
kidnap glitch with vjoe, stalls opponent completely while being hit during kidnap
kidnap glitch interruption from acid rain
Team building thread on SRK Forums

Unblockable Set Ups

This section is dedicated to one of Firebrand's biggest strengths, the unblockables. All the characters presented here are using assists or DHC to set up an unblockable.

Doctor Strange: with Dante's Jam Session, FB/Strange/Skrull set up
Dormammu: using stalking flare and assist call
Ironman: Repulsor Set up
Storm/Doom: a concept using DHC
Super Skrull: a near infinite snap back loop
Amaterasu: Concept
Trish: After a kill with trish, DHC with round harvest

Hard Tags

Firebrand's biggest weakness is his damage, this section is dedicated to tagging in various partners for optimal damage. Use this as a reference to help build your team in conjunction with unblockables. It is worth noting that different hard tags work on different characters, so it is recommended to do some research on who they work on along with what positions on the screen they work at.

Doctor Doom: Midscreen raw Bon Voyage confirm, Corner to Corner
Doctor Strange: a difficult tag that may be character specific, an interesting hard tag using wall cling fireball H after bon voyage, hard tags that lead to THC ToD
Frank West: BnB into Frank level 4
Hulk: BnB to Hulk
Nova: Concept after Bon Voyage
Shuma-Gorath: Bon Voyage into Shuma 1.1M
Zero: Lightning loops from BnB, another variant
Dormammu: Zak Bennett Combo, only on Firebrand, Wolverine, and Rocket Raccoon, Alternate Zak Bennett Combo

TAC infinites

Move List

Assist Types

Special Properties
Cross-Over Combination
Alpha.png Hell Spitfire (H)
Shot.png Tiltdown.png
100,000 + 15,000
per Flame Hit
Strk.png Otg.png
Dark Fire
Beta2.png Demon Missile (M)
Direct.png Front.png
Dark Fire
Gamma2.png Demon Missile (H)
Direct.png Tiltdown.png
Dark Fire

Normal Moves

Notes (glossary)
Standing Light
Crouching Light
D.png + L.png
Low.png Rpdfire.png
Standing Medium
Crouching Medium
D.png + M.png
Standing Heavy
35,000 + 45,000
Crouching Heavy
D.png + H.png
Low.png Softknockdown.png
Launch.png Nocancel.png
Jumping Light
air L.png
Jumping Medium
air M.png
Jumping Heavy
air H.png
40,000 + 40,000
Jumping Special
air S.png
High.png Aircombofinisher.png
Devil's Claw
air D.png + H.png
Softknockdown.png ;
Leaves Firebrand in Flight on contact with opponent.


Notes (glossary)
Forward Throw
F.png + H.png
30,000 + 30,000
+ 20,000
Throw.png Hardknockdown.png
Back Throw
B.png + H.png
20,000 + 60,000
Throw.png Hardknockdown.png
Forward Air Throw
air F.png + H.png
Airthrow.png Hardknockdown.png
Back Air Throw
air B.png + H.png
Airthrow.png Hardknockdown.png

Special Moves

Notes (glossary)
Hell Spitfire (L/M)
Qcf.png + L.png / M.png
Airok.png Proj.png
5 points of Low.png durability
Hell Spitfire (H)
Qcf.png + H.png
100,000 + 15,000
per Flame Hit
Airok.png Strk.png
Otg.png Proj.png ;
Strk.png and Otg.png
only on Flame hit.
3 points of Low.png durability until it lands (5 if in air), then it produces 5 hits with 3 points of Low.png durability each.
If done in air, Firebrand can't act or block until he lands
Bon Voyage
Qcf.png + S.png
20,000 per Drag
Hit + 70,000
Airok.png Hardknockdown.png
Softknockdown.png Wallbounce.png ;
Wallbounce.png caused only by last hit.
Wallbounce.png results in a
Hardknockdown.png . However, if
Wallbounce.png has already been used
up in the Combo, a "fake" Wallbounce.png
occurs that results in a Softknockdown.png .
Firebrand will always drag opponent all
the way to the wall. The further from
the wall, the more damage he will do.
Hitgrab state during drag where Firebrand can't be interrupted
Demon Missile (L/M)
Dp.png + L.png / M.png
L.png version leaves Firebrand in flight on hit or block.
M.png version passes through opponent.
Demon Missile
Dp.png + H.png
Leaves Firebrand in Flight.
Demon Missile (Fully Charged)
Dp.png + H.png
Stagger.png (ground only)
Softknockdown.png (air only) ;
Leaves Firebrand in Flight.
Hell's Elevator
Qcb.png + Atk.png
Leaves Firebrand in Flight.
L.png goes straight up.
M.png goes up/forward.
H.png goes up/back.
Hell Dive
air Qcb.png + Atk.png
Can chain Hell Dive into
another Hell Dive (up to 3).
Ends flight if used during flight mode.
Can be cancelled into a normal to retain momentum similar to an air dash.
L.png goes straight down.
M.png goes down/forward.
H.png goes down/back.
Qcb.png + S.png
Airok.png ;
Leaves Firebrand in Flight for 90 frames.
Wall Cling
(in air, near wall)
B.png B.png
Can't be done while in flight mode.
Wall cling counts as 1 air action, shooting a fireball counts as a 2nd. S.png while clinged doesn't use an air action, but you can get a 4th air action if your 3rd action is the wall cling.
If Firebrand shoots a fireball while clinged, he cannot act or block until he hits the ground.
While clinged:
L.png shoots forward fireball.
M.png shoots down/forward fireball.
H.png shoots OTG.png fireball.
S.png jumps off wall without an action.

Hyper Moves

Notes (glossary)
Dark Fire
Qcf.png + Atk.png + Atk.png
23,000 per hit
Airok.png Otg.png
Proj.png ; Mashable.
20 hits, each with 3 points of High.png durability.
Luminous Body
Qcb.png + Atk.png + Atk.png
Airok.png ;
When performed in the air, leaves Firebrand in Flight,
25% speed increase for entire duration (593 frames)
Can build meter for entire duration
Chaos Tide
Dp.png + Atk.png + Atk.png
Level 3 Hyper.
Summons a clone that flies in the background at neutral jump height.
Stays on screen for 598 frames, but only accepts inputs for 579 frames.
Controlled with L.png , M.png , and H.png .
Chaos Tide - L Attack
L.png during Chaos Tide
The clone shoots a down forward fireball(Hell Spitfire M).
Chaos Tide - M Attack
M.png during Chaos Tide
The clone performs Demon Missile M.
Chaos Tide - H Attack
H.png during Chaos Tide
The clone performs Demon Missile H.


Tips and Tricks

  • Firebrand has an unlisted move, performed with B.png B.png against a wall. This wall cling is great for avoiding moves and opponents, and saving time on your flight.
  • Learn the ranges of all versions of Hell's Elevator and Hell Dive. Not only are these great mobility tools, but at certain ranges they can make for amazing ambiguous cross-ups.
  • Perform a ground throw into the corner puts you at exactly the right range for an OTG Hell Spitfire H.png . Use this for relaunches out of your throw. Outside of the corner, it is recommended to do a forward dash before your OTG Hell Spitfire, as the juggle on the fire may cause the opponent to fall out vs certain characters if you are not close enough.
  • While using the Devil's Claw dive kick, you are put into flight mode. On hit, use Hell Dive L.png to land with enough time to easily combo off of the dive kick. If the opponent blocks the dive kick in the corner, you can repeatedly use it (spam it) to add a lot of pressure. Use this in conjunction with assists or the Chaos Tide level 3 Hyper to lock the opponent down, or use Hell Dives to mix the opponent up or escape.
  • With X-Factor level 3 and/or Luminous Body, Chaos Tide can be used to effectively lock the opponent down from full screen, causing a lot of chip damage. One way to do this is to press H.png to trigger the Red Arremer clone's Demon Missile H.png swoop, then immediately cancel into a Hell Spitfire L.png , causing a fireball / swoop loop.
  • If possible, try to use Devil's Claw before Bon Voyage in your combos. Bon Voyage scales harshly and will decrease the damage of the rest of the combo. Along with this, Devil's Claw has too much start-up to connect at high scaling.
  • Concerning throws: When on the ground, go for forward throws, as Firebrand cannot convert back ground throws outside of Luminous Body or XFactor. When going for air throws, try to go for back throws instead of forward throws. At super jump height, Firebrand cannot convert forward throws. However, he can convert back throws with QCB+M into j.L (land), QCF+H. At any height below super jump, go straight into whiffed Bon Voyage (land), QCF+H
  • Firebrand's j.L can instant overhead a large majority of the cast. This is great for fuzzy guarding your opponent. Along with this, while in XFactor or Luminous Body, you can connect a j.L into Bon Voyage for a solo instant overhead conversion anywhere on the screen.
  • Firebrand's flight mode (QCB+s) is tied with Thor for the slowest start-up in the game at 30 frames of start-up. However, a lot of Firebrand's moves leave him in flight mode when they finish. Generally, it's better to use Hell's Elevator to enter flight mode, as it will launch you into the sky and is a total of 3 frames faster than standard flight mode.


Combos can vary drastically based on confirms and available resources, but here are some basic solo Firebrand combos. As you will notice, they are very similar combos are dependent on your wall and ground bounce. If possible, ALWAYS try to Devil Claw before you Bon Voyage in a combo. This is for two reasons. Late into a combo, Devil's Claw has too much start up to work after a j.H. The second reason is that the earlier you Bon Voyage in a combo, the more scaled your combo will be. Doing Devil's Claw before Bon Voyage will maximize your damage.

c.L confirm on standing opponent

c.L, c.M, c.H, s.S, SJ up forward, rising j.H xx QCB+M ~ j.H, land, s.H, s. S, SJ up forward, j.M, j.H xx Devil's Claw (down + H), QCB+L, land, c.H, s.S, SJ up forward, j.M, j.H, QCF+S, dash out of the corner, s.S, SJ up forward, j.H, j.S, land, Dark Fire (QCF+atk+atk)

Devil's Claw confirm

(j.M, j.H), Devil's Claw (down + H), QCB+L or QCB+S into j.S, land, c.M, s.H, c.H, s.S, SJ up forward, j.M, j.M, j.H, QCF+S, dash out of the corner, s.S, SJ up forward, j.M, j.M, j.H, j.S, land, Dark Fire (QCF+atk+atk)

Bon Voyage confirm

(j.M, j.H), QCF+S, dash out of the corner or towards corner (spacing dependant), c.M, s.H, c.H, s.S, SJ up forward, j.M, j.M, j.H xx Devil's Claw (down + H), QCB+L, c.H, s.S, SJ up forward, j.M, j.M, j.H, j.S, land, Dark Fire (QCF+atk+atk)

Back air grab confirm

Back air grab, (QCF+S if normal jump height, QCB+M~j.L if super jump height), land, QCF+H, s.H, s.S, SJ up forward, j.M, j.M, j.H xx Devil's Claw (down + H), QCF+L, c.H, s.S, SJ up forward, j.M, j.M, j.H, QCF+S, dash out of corner, s.S, SJ up forward, j.H, j.S, land, Dark Fire (QCF+atk+atk)

Basic Strategy

Firebrand is a dangerously fast and mobile character, especially when he activates Luminous Body. His mix-up game is one of the strongest in the cast when paired with the proper lockdown assists, and he can easily convert nearly any hit he gets. Unfortunately though, his damage is some of the worst in the game and his normals (while possessing great properties and angles) tend to have somewhat small hitboxes. This forces him to rely on his team to get his damage for him, and his assists to cover his approach. However, a properly optimized Firebrand team can be one of the scariest teams to fight against, as Firebrand is capable of killing two or even three characters off of one touch using his Demon Missile H combined with DHCs or assists to unblockable incoming characters.

Firebrand makes up for his poor damage through the use of his team. His combo potential tends to be pretty lackluster, using both the wall and ground bounce in his standard combos. However, he is always guaranteed corner carry on any combo thanks to Bon Voyage. This, combined with hard tag set ups off of Bon Voyage and other set-ups, make it easier to compensate for Firebrand's poor damage and meter build. It also can help make TAC infinites more reliable, as you'll ALWAYS get the corner carry. His moveset is pretty good, with a lot of tools that can be used for both mobility and offense. Both of his level 1 hypers are very good, though Dark Fire can be hard for some characters to DHC from. However, Luminous Body is the only traditional "air-okay" install super (Amaterasu's Veil of Mist is also air-okay, but it affects the opponent instead of Amaterasu herself), and is one of the few install supers that allow you to still build meter during it. All of his normals have great angles and frame data, with his j.L being an instant overhead on most of the cast and his j.H being two hits. He also has a great c.L and s.L(+6 on block!) and his c.H slide is very good too. His j.S has a good backwards hitbox and j.M is a great air-to-air tool. s.M has deceptive range and is great for cancelling into Demon Missile M on block in combination with an assist. His s.S has a good hitbox, but is very negative on block and pushes him towards the opponent. His c.M is a generally lackluster move, with a significantly smaller hitbox than s.M. However, it does slightly more damage than s.M and hits low.

All in all, Firebrand is a character that specializes in not letting the opponent play. He can run away and zone with fireballs until he can get in. Once there, he can lock you down and put you through 2-3 high/low mix-ups. Depending on your team, the first hit that Firebrand gets could lead to you winning through unblockable set-ups. However, while his combos are easy to execute, Firebrand is still an executionally demanding character. His low damage and meter build force you to be perfect with your hard tag set-ups and TAC infinites, while his neutral requires a lot of inputs to move around (Quarter Circle Backs instead of an air dash). Despite being a strong character with some cheap options, he is very demanding from both the handler and his team (meaning that his "competitively viable" teams will limit you to very specific characters). This causes him to be a somewhat rare character, generally only played by character specialists. Do not let this discourage you though, as Firebrand offers a playstyle with some very unique tools that set him apart from every other character.


Firebrand has a lot of mobility tools in his arsenal. To start it off, he has a better-than-average forward walk speed, and a fairly fast normal jump speed. This makes him good at pressuring at the start of the round, but also helps a lot with his mix-up game (more on mix-ups below). Both his forward and his back dash are fast and have short active frames, making them really good for OS plink dashing. These factors combine to make Firebrand a very fast character on the ground, but he also has grounded Bon Voyage (qcf+s) and Demon Missile M (dp+m) to cover large distances quickly. Hell's Elevator (qcb+atk) also causes Firebrand to leave the ground and enter flight mode. c.H is a slide that covers a good distance and can be cancelled into other mobility tools such as Bon Voyage, Demon Missile M, or Hell's Elevator.

In the air, Firebrand has some very unique options. The most noteworthy is Bon Voyage (qcf+s). This move launches Firebrand down forward with a hitbox on his feet, like a divekick. If it connects, it enters a special hit grab state that can't be interrupted and always corner carries. This is a great move on its own but is ALSO very useful as a mobility tool, as it starts up and moves very quickly towards the ground. Hell's Dive (qcb+atk) allows him to perform a short command dash in one of three directions (down back, down forward, or down. They act similar to air dashes, in that if you "cancel" it into a normal, you will keep your air dash mobility all the way down. The short active frames (15) on these dives allow you to "chain" them into each other, changing your direction and momentum on a whim. Devil's Claw (down+H) has a lot of start up, but has a decent hitbox and leaves you in flight on hit or block. Even if you have used your flight mode already, this move will put you back in flight mode. Luminous Body (qcb+atk+atk) also leaves you in flight when done in the air. Lastly, he has his wall cling to stall and "fling" himself (see Wall Clings and Fireballs)

Firebrand's mobility is his most vital asset. He can't bully his way in like some characters can (such as Vergil with Spiral Swords or Zero with Sougenmu), so he must rely on mobility and mindgames to bait and punish the opponent. Understanding how to use his mobility both offensively and defensively is very important in getting the most out of Firebrand.

Grab game

Firebrand has an exceptionally good grab game. As mentioned in the mobility section, he has a good set of dashes for OS plink dashes. This ties into his s.H though. His s.H is a very good normal with two hits, a decent hitbox, and is +1 on block. This makes his ground grab attempts a lot safer if whiffed, but his fast forward walk speed makes it even more threatening. It is recommended to go for forward ground grabs instead of back ground grabs, as you can't combo off of back ground grabs without XF2 or faster. Unless you are in the corner, you should do a forward dash after a grab, as some characters will fall out of the OTG QCF+H if you don't (try it on C. Viper without dashing to test this). When attempting a forward grab, it is important to buffer your next input depending on the situation. If your opponent techs your grab, buffer a c.L or QCB+H. The c.L will hit low and beat out most character's options right out of a tech except to block. The QCB+H will launch Firebrand backwards to safety. Other options are to input your s.H grab OS and then buffer an assist call and DP+M at the same time. If timed properly, you will only get the DP+M and assist call if you do not get a grab and just get s.H.

Firebrand's air grab game is strong too, mainly due to having a good option select in his j.H and the ability to buffer Bon Voyage or Hell's Dive to cover missed grabs. His hitbox is very small in the air and he rises very fast, causing Firebrand to be really good at grabbing people just off the ground. It is recommended to go for back air grabs over forward air grabs if possible. Both grabs can be comboed from at normal jump height, but you can only combo a back air grab at super jump height (at SJ height, combo from a back air grab by doing Hell's Dive M into j.L, land, then Hell Spitfire H). You can also option select Devil's Claw (down+H) by doing downback+H or downforward+H. However, Devil's Claw has quite a bit of start up, so sometimes it's better to option select with just j.H.

Unfortunately, Firebrand has miserable damage and meter off of throws. Still, every bit of meter and damage counts, along with the possibility of a TAC infinite. Being able to grab well with Firebrand is important and shouldn't be looked over.

Wall clings and fireballs

Firebrand can wall cling using the input of back, back. While clinged, he can shoot a fireball by using l , m, or h . The button used correspond to the inputs of Hell Spitfire (qcf+atk). If you hit s while clinged, Firebrand will jump off without performing an action. If you choose to shoot a fireball while on the wall, you can't block until you touch the ground. Also, if you choose to shoot a fireball while on the while, it counts as an air action. As in, the wall cling itself counts as one air action, and then shooting the fireball counts as the second. If you simply jump off with s , you only use one air action. This is very important to remember, as you only have a total of 3 air actions. Once you have used all 3, you will fall straight to the ground. However if your third action is a wall cling, you can still shoot a fireball off the wall, allowing you to perform a "fourth" air action. Ideally, your wall clings should be low enough that if you shoot an L fireball from the wall, that it will hit a standing Morrigan.

His normal fireballs are pretty good as well, and are a vital asset in his game. Sporting an average 5 points of durability, aren't the strongest things around. Fortunately though, they do great damage (100,000 each) and travel pretty slow. Firebrand also has very good angles with this move, being able to shoot it forward on the ground and in the air, and being able to shoot it up forward on the ground and down forward in the air. Air fireballs also stop your decent during the duration of the move. All of this combines to give Firebrand some very good angles on his fireballs. His H fireball is useful in very specific match-ups (like vs Wolverine) in that it acts somewhat like Dormammu's Flame Carpet.

You can switch between regular fireballs and wall cling fireballs to allow you to get multiple on the screen at one time at a bunch of different angles. Use this to abuse the angles that individual characters have trouble covering. Being able to seamlessly switch from offense to zoning is a key trait of Firebrand and one that takes a lot of practice.

Wall cling into S has some odd properties and can sometimes preserve momentum. For example, if you are Firebrand and on incoming, if you wall cling instantly as you enter the screen and then press S right away, Firebrand will jump nearly full screen off the wall, amplifying his momentum from him entering the stage. This is great for escaping incoming mix-ups if you time it well, but be wary of meaty set-ups. This can method can also transfer momentum from the screen shrinking. As in, if you wall cling at full screen and then jump off instantly, you can sometimes do the same full-screen jump. Mess around with this to see when you can use this wall jump as a momentum tool.


Firebrand happens to possess very good mix-ups when combined with assists. He has a lot of cross up set-ups using beams or horizontal assists along with cross up Bon Voyage or Demon Missile H, but also has a powerful high/low game. His j.L is an instant overhead on nearly every character in teh game. Not only that, but it can be cancelled into Bon Voyage or Hell's Dive L to get back to the ground fast. This makes it very easy for Firebrand to instant overhead you the moment you block an assist, or fake out a high with Hell's Dive L into c.L. As mentioned before, his grab game is very powerful and allow for some good guard break set-ups using fireballs and Luminous Body. His fuzzy guard set-ups also work on a large amount of the cast.

When trying to figure out mix-ups with Firebrand, try to thing about the unique properties of his specials and the angles they cover. Simple ideas can be something like Demon Missile M + Plasma Beam on an incoming character for a cross up. More advanced things including plink dashing to full screen into a low wall clinged L fireball, and then plink dash behind it to attempt a guard break from the fireball's blockstun.

Air vs Ground Dark Fire

You may notice that some players will do their Dark Fire at the end of their combo in the air. This is because you do slightly more damage. If you do a grounded Dark Fire on a hard knockdown opponent without mashing, you'll get 19 hits. With air Dark Fire, you get 20 hits (doing roughly 9k more damage). This is important to remember, but it can vary based on character size slightly. However, it is also important to understand why you might want to do a grounded Dark Fire instead. After Dark Fire, your opponent is going to be above you. If you do it in the air, you cannot act or block until you land. So if you do not plan to DHC and the extra bit of damage would not kill, you should do grounded Bon Voyage instead. If you were to do an air one and not DHC, it is very possible for your opponent to neutral tech and then punish your recovery with a footdive or helmet breaker. Unfortunately, Dark Fire doesn't leave the opponent in a great spot for Firebrand to apply pressure afterwords.

Advanced Strategy

Bon Voyage Hard Tags

Bon Voyage is one of the most powerful tools in Firebrand's arsenal, and it is important to understand how it works. Bon Voyage can connect at 3 different heights (ground, normal jump, super jump), and at 4 different screen positions (corner, near corner, near full screen, full screen). This causes 12 different ways that Bon Voyage can hit. While each of them have minuscule differences, the most important thing to note is that grounded Bon Voyage ALWAYS throws farther into the corner than normal or super jump Bon Voyage. This is really important when considering hard tags, because a midscreen grounded Bon Voyage into hardtag will NOT work the same way as a midscreen normal jump Bon Voyage. Be very wary of how and where your Bon Voyage connects and if/how you can hard tag out of it. Be very wary of hard tag videos that use grounded Bon Voyage, as they may not work off of air Bon Voyages (which are way more common).

Wall Clinged Fireballs

Firebrand has the ability to shoot fireballs out of his wall cling using L, M, or H. However, the wall cling can only be done while airborne and with your back to the wall. Fortunately, there are ways to do this right off the ground. This technique has a lot of names, but the most common is "instant wall cling fireballs". These take a lot of practice, but are a big part of Firebrand's game. They can be put on the screen very quickly, and can be combined with standing or aerial fireballs to cover a lot of angles. If done at the lowest possible height, they will hit Morrigan while she is standing. The optimal way of doing this is as followed:

Back, up-back, neutral, back

This is the optimal way to do it. You start at back, and then slide it into up back. This counts as the first "back" in the input, and also your jump. After you hit up-back, you need to go back to neutral. This is the only way the game can register a wall cling. After you go back to neutral, you tap back again. This produces the lowest altitude wall clings, which are necessary to hit Morrigan. Below is a GIF of this method in action.


This technique is easiest on a Hitbox, though it is definitely still possible on stick. It is considered one of the more executionally heavy techniques that Firebrand has, but it's not something that you can do blindly. It takes a lot of practice to be able to instant wall cling fireball on command, and it takes even more practice to use it properly. However, it is recommended that you learn to plink dash as well to make use of this. It will allow you to shoot a fireball and then plink after it (probably with an assist behind you), or it will allow you to shoot fireballs until you are too close to do it again, where you can then just plink back to full screen and shoot more fireballs. This technique is becoming a staple in Firebrand's neutral, so don't skip over this part of his game. Watch Apologyman for some good examples of instant wall cling fireball use.

Unblockable Set-Up Basics

Firebrand can set up unblockables using his charged Demon Missile H. This seems overpowered at first glance, but there is more to it than meets the eye. As a Firebrand player, it is up to you to know what set-ups your team has, but also how to escape them. Here are some factors to be aware of when trying to unblockable an enemy:

  • Incoming height/options: Different characters come in at different heights on incoming. For example, Magneto comes out significantly higher than Vergil. This makes it a lot easier for him to escape even meaty set-ups. Dante and Strider also come out significantly higher than others, but also have double jumps. This makes it a lot easier for them to escape solo or poorly timed incoming unblockables. Sentinel has an air okay invincible super, so he has a pretty good chance of escaping any unblockable that has a gap. Try to be aware of what options your opponent has on incoming and the heights their characters come in at.
  • X-Factor: A lot of unblockables can be escaped using Xfactor. Set-ups that seem guaranteed can be escaped using XFactor guard cancelling. For example, Angelic's "Heaven or Hell" set-up (Shown above) can be escaped by blocking the Stalking Flare, and then XFactor cancelling the block stun and then taking the hit from the Purification assist. This carries you up too high for Firebrand to convert. Some characters can also XFactor cancel blockstun into invincible hypers. While it seems advantageous to force your opponent to use XFactor, try to be aware of how much of your resources you commit to your set-up.
  • Available resources: As mentioned in the above paragraph, be very aware of your available resources. You do not want to blow all of your meter to unblockable a character and then be unable to kill them once you get the hit. You also do not want to waste a lot of meter only to have the opponent escape your set-up. Firebrand requires a lot of resource management.
  • Opposing team composition: When trying to unblockable an enemy, make sure you are very aware of their team composition. If you were to get a hit on Magneto/Doom/Vergil, you could kill Magneto and attempt to unblockable Doom, but then later end up having to deal with anchor Vergil. On the other hand though, if you were to get a hit on a Magneto/Dormammu/Doom team, it would be better to unblockable Dormammu and leave the with anchor Doom. This aspect of unblockabling is open to interpretation and can vary a lot based on the player. However, it is still something to be aware of and requires a lot of thought.
  • Ground vs Air: If at all possible, it is usually better to go for air-based unblockables. Only three characters in the game have air-okay invincible supers (Phoenix, Sentinel, and Morrigan). However, a large portion of the cast have invincible ground supers. Be very conscious of the opponent's available meter and whether they have XFactor, as you don't want to attempt a ground unblockable on Spencer, only for them to XFactor cancel into Bionic Arm and hit both Firebrand and the assist you are using to unblockable.

Strategy vs. Firebrand

- Firebrand's normals, while possessing great angles and frame data, are somewhat small. This can cause him to struggle vs characters with big disjointed normals, such as Zero or Vergil.

- At first, it may seem like Firebrand has an overwhelming zoning game because of his good angles and the speed of wall cling fireballs, but it is important to remember that each fireball is only 5 points of medium durability. Wall cling fireballs can be ducked by a large portion of the cast, and he can't block until he lands. His air fireballs are great for sniping assists, but each fireball completely stops Firebrand's momentum and makes it easier to punish him. His grounded fireballs also have enough recovery to prevent him from being able to match the stronger zoners. Morrigan in particular gives him problems, but other characters like Dormammu, Zero, and Magneto can either out-durability or outmaneuver his projectiles. It's up to the Firebrand player to be unpredictable with his fireballs in order to limit your approach options, so always be wary of where he is and what angles he can shoot his fireballs at.

- Be wary of your options during unblockables. Try to use your meter and XFactor to disrupt his unblockables or to escape them. Each character comes out at different heights, making it easier for some characters to escape them (like Magneto, Dante, or Strider). If Firebrand attempts an unblockable while you're grounded, you can XF cancel the blockstun into an invincible move and punish both him and his assist. Sometimes it is better to take the hit from whatever Firebrand is using to lock you down in order to scale the following combo and force Firebrand to use more meter or go for a TAC infinite to kill.

- Firebrand cannot break the super jump threshold. As in, once you've reached your maximum super jump height, the only way you can get higher is if something hits you up there (such as with Hidden Missiles). This can cause problems vs characters like Doom who can super jump and then air dash up, as Firebrand will not be able to reach him up there. Other characters like Magneto and MODOK can make this harder for him too.

- Sometimes it's better to dismantle the team around Firebrand than it is to kill Firebrand. Use snapbacks in a way that disrupt his team synergy, and focus on the "core character" of the team (Usually Doom). Be careful though, as XF3 Firebrand is extremely fast and can actually do damage. If your team has poor incoming options, it's possible for Firebrand to get a hit on your first character, XF to kill, and then solo unblockable both characters before XF runs out.

- Save your Xfactor vs a Firebrand team until you absolutely need it. Xfactor is an important resource to Firebrand, as it is his most reliable way to guarantee a kill. If Firebrand uses his XFactor to kill a character, you will still have your XFactor to attempt an anchor comeback or maybe escape an unblockable set-up.

- Firebrand has NO invincible moves. He cannot challenge your invincible moves, so characters like Spencer can bully him with the threat of a Bionic Arm. Because he can't XFactor cancel blockstun into an invincible move, characters like Vergil can lock him down for long periods of time too.

- Firebrand cannot block until he lands if he does Hell Spitfire H (QCF+H), Dark Fire (QCF+atk+atk), or a wall cling fireball in the air. If you can get under Firebrand while he is at super jump height, you can possibly cross him up and force him to get Hell Spitfire (QCF+H) instead of Hell's Dive (QCB+h), or Dark Fire (QCF+atk+atk) instead of Luminous Body (QCB+atk+atk).

- If Firebrand does Bon Voyage (Qcf+s) at super jump height, he will not reach the ground. Bon Voyage will end slightly below normal jump height with 28 frames of recovery. A smart Firebrand will avoid doing Bon Voyage at that height, as you can easily punish him if the move ends in the air.

- Air Bon Voyage is +10 on block, whereas ground Bon Voyage is -30 on block. Without an assist, grounded Bon Voyage can always be punished (you can mash grab if you're worried about missing the punish window. Even if he calls an assist with it, mash grab anyway. If you leave blockstun, you'll grab him. If you don't leave blockstun before the assist hits, then just stop mashing grab and start blocking). Air Bon Voyage is a lot safer, but it is possible to chicken block it right off the ground and punish it with a grab or quick normal.

- Luminous Body has 9 frames of pre-flash start-up and 11 frames of post-flash recovery. This is pretty bad when compared to either of the Devil Triggers (which are only 4 frames total) or installs like Spiral Swords (swords appear on frame 2 after flash) or Sougenmu (1 frame of post flash recovery). So if Firebrand does Luminous Body near you, you have 11 frames after the flash to punish it. It's also worth noting that if done in the air, Luminous Body will leave Firebrand in flight mode. He will have to manually input something to end his flight after waiting for the 11 frames of recovery. Pay a lot of attention to when Firebrand does Luminous Body as well. You can tell whether it was a grounded or air Luminous Body by looking at his feet right as the game zooms in on him for the cinematic. Lastly, if Firebrand cancels any of his Shoryuken motion (Demon Missile L, M, or H) moves into Luminous Body, he will be in flight mode.

- Unless you are in block stun or Firebrand is in Luminous Body or XFactor, do not be afraid to crouch block him. Without those, he cannot convert j.L into a combo unless he forces you to fuzzy guard. So, if Firebrand uses Plasma Beam to approach and then attempts to go high right after the last hit of the beam is blocked, he cannot convert it even if it hits you. This will take some practice to get the hang of when he can and can't go high, but it will become intuitive after you've gotten enough experience vs him.

- Dark Fire is an air-okay super with high-durability points. If Firebrand is at full screen and super jump height, Dark Fire will hit the entire screen in front of and below him. It will do barely any damage, but it will clear the screen of all non-hyper projectiles and usually hit you out of anything you are doing. Be wary of Firebrand using this as an option to DHC out into something like Dormammu's Chaotic Flame or Doom's Photon Array.

- A lot of moves leave Firebrand in flight mode. Pay attention for moves that leave Firebrand in flight mode. These moves are as followed: Demon Missile H (DP+H), air Luminous Body (QCB+atk+Atk), Hell's Elevator (QCB+atk), Devil's Claw (down+H, on hit or block), Demon Missile L (DP+L, on hit or block), and obviously flight mode (QCB+S)

- Firebrand has a very small crouching hitbox, allowing him to duck under a lot of common assists such as Doom's Plasma Beam or Hawkeye's Greyhound (triple arrow). Be careful about relying on these assists, as Firebrand's c.L will hit you and keep him under the assist. Look for situations that forcing Firebrand to duck your assist will help, such as going for a grab.

- Try very hard to track Firebrand's air actions. He only gets 3 until he lands again, unless he enters flight mode. Every move he does in the air counts as 1 action, with the one exception being wall cling fireballs (1 for the cling, 1 for the fireball shot). If you know that Firebrand has used all three of his air actions, try to punish him on the way down.

Week of Firebrand for /r/mvc3

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