Ryo Sakazaki (KoF '94-Era) (KoF '98)

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Gameplay overview

'94 Ryo trades '98 Ryo's versatility and mix up options for a zoning centered, shoto esque gameplay style. His main weapons and what differences him from his regular counterpart are his high-priority, low-risk DP and a long range fireball. He can still be used as a poking, pressure character like '98 Ryo, only not as effectively.


  • cr.B, cr.B, A, hcb + K
  • cr.B, cr.C (link), qcf + P
  • j.D, cl.C, f.A / qcf + P

Normal Moves

Standing A - A great, versatile normal. Very good priority (can trade favorably with Yashiro's s.B, for example), decent range, can be cancelled into a hcb + K. Good to combo from cr.B.

Standing B - GREAT, fast, long ranged poke. Even when it's not on the godly level of Yashiro's standing B, it's still a great normal move and you should abuse it to keep your opponent from getting too close.

Standing C - Nice damage, fast and long ranged. Another of Ryo's good normals.

Close A - Can be used as combo filler instead of cr.A/B

Close B - Can be used as combo filler instead of cr.A/B

Close C - Very fast, useful as a meaty attack.

Crouching A - Standard crouching A, cancelable.

Crouching B - Your main combo starter. Comes out fast and has nice range, good for footsies.

Crouching C - Good, fast anti-air. You can use it in combos too, but has less range than cl.C.

Crouching D - Cancellable sweep, range is only decent.

Jumping B - Very fast. Will beat lots of stuff in an air-to-air clash.

Jumping D - Your main jump-in.

Standing CD - One of the best standing CDs in the game. Fast, very nice range, cancellable. Can surprise opponents running at you and beats lots of stuff. Cancelling into a C fireball can be useful to Guard Crush and will always combo if you get a counter.

Command Normals

f+A - Overhead, excellent used as a meaty attack.

Special Moves

Ko ou Ken (qcf+P) - A good full screen projectile. Can miss small crouching characters next to you, so be careful against them.

Kohou (f, d, df + P) - The A version is one of the best, if not the best, anti-airs in the game. Like Ryu's DP in SF, it has good startup invincibility, has better range than regular Ryo's DP and it's hard to punish. Ryo's main strenght compared to his normal version.

Kuuchuu Ko ou Ken (In air, qcf + P) - An Akuma-esque diagonal air fireball. It's not as safe as Akuma's, because Ryo 'hangs' up a bit while performing it, giving your opponent the chance to roll and punish. Use it mainly to punish baited anti-airs.

Hien Shippuu Kyaku (hcb + K) - Both versions are unsafe and easily punishable when blocked, so use them mainly in combos. A version can sometimes be useful to catch jumping enemies that are outside the range of your DP. Still, be careful when using it.

Zanretsu Ken (f, b, f + P) - Ryo doesn't have much of an use for this move. As an anti-air it's an inferior option, it doesn't deal a lot of damage, and it leaves you open for a long time with a 'rape me' sign in your head. Avoid.

Desperation Moves

Ryuuko Ranbu (qcf,hcb + P) - A multi hit DM. If blocked, Ryo will keep pulling attacks as if it connected, but omitting his finishing DP. This is mostly bad, as it will leave you open for a long time after it finishes, and your opponent can just Guard Cancel Roll and punish you if he has a free stock. Still, if your opponent has no stock and very little bar left, a blocked Ryuuko Ranbu (after a blocked cl.C for example) can finish him off thanks to the chip damage it deals.

Useful mainly in combos.

A version comes out faster and covers less distance, C version is the opposite. MAX version does more hits.

Haou Shoukou Ken (f,hcf + P) - A bigger, more damaging Ko ou Ken. Goes through normal projectiles. A version is slower, and is sometimes difficult to evade if your opponent doesn't guess which version you are doing. An early roll or jump expecting a C version will fall directly into it.

C version travels faster, and is sometimes good to use it as a counter to normal projectiles. Just be aware of its startup, so fast projectiles could hit you before you pull it.

Both versions can be good to catch jumping opponents.

MAX versions are bigger and deal more damage / hits. The A version has the same speed as the C version.