Street Fighter IV (Old Wiki Page)

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Joystick Notation

  • F - Forward - Tilt stick forward/towards the opponent. (X-axis)
  • B - Backward/Back - Tilt stick backward/away from the opponent. (X-axis)
  • U - Up - Tilt stick upwards. (Y-axis)
  • D - Down - Tilt stick downwards. (Y-axis)
  • QCF - Quarter circle forward/Hadouken/Fireball - Tilt stick downwards, then to downwards and forward, then forward.
  • QCB - Quarter circle backward - Tilt stick downwards, then to downwards and backward, then backward.
  • HCF - Half circle forward - Tilt stick backwards, then to downwards and backward, then to downward, then to downwards and forward, then forward.
  • HCB - Half circle backward - Tilt stick forwards, then to downwards and forward, then to downward, then to downwards and backward, then backward.
  • DP - Dragon punch - Tilt stick forwards, then to downward, then to downward and forward.
  • 360/FC - Full circle - Complete a full rotation of the stick.
  • 720 - N/A - Complete a 720 degree rotation of the stick.
  • Charge - Hold a tilt - Hold the stick for a certain time in either B or D (Depending) then move to F or U respectively.
  • (##f) - Denotes the number of frames (1/60th of a second) to charge for. 60f = 1 second.
  • (##s) - Denotes the number of seconds to charge for.

X-axis functions can be used interchangeably with Y-axis functions and vice versa. X-axis functions cannot be used in conjunction with another X-axis function and vice versa.

SFIV accepts shortcuts for some of these motions:

  • DP - can be performed as DF,D,DF; in other words tap the stick into the lower corner twice. Also DF,D,DB,D,DF,D,DB; in other words wiggle the stick from one lower corner to the other and back. Useful when you are guarding low, or when you are being crossed up.
  • 360 - can be performed as F,DF,D,DB,B,UB or B,DB,D,DF,F,UF. In other words, a 225 degree rotation ending in up and back or up and forward. Reduces the chance of jumping.

Six Button Notation

  • Jab - weak punch
  • Strong - medium punch
  • Fierce - fierce punch
  • P - any punch
  • PPP or 3P - all three punches simultaneously
  • Short - weak kick
  • Forward - medium kick
  • Roundhouse (RH) - fierce kick
  • K = any kick
  • KKK or 3K - all three kicks simultaneously

--NKI 14:42, 7 January 2007 (UTC)


State Modifiers

  • st. - The following move should be performed in the standing position (neutral in the Y-axis). i.e. st.Fierce, perform a Fierce whilst standing.
  • cr. - The following move should be performed in the crouched position (held down in the Y-axis). i.e. cr.Fierce, perform a Fierce whilst crouching.
  • j. - The following move should be performed in the "in the air" position (After having held up in the Y-axis). i.e. j.Fierce, perform a Fierce whilst in the air.

Game Mechanics

Focus/Saving Attacks

Basic Operation

Hold MP + MK at the same time to start "charging" a Focus Attack.

Focus Attacks can broadly be separated into three "levels", which correlate to how long the player charges the attack.

  • LEVEL 1

If you time this correctly, this can be used to "bypass" one hit of another move. Otherwise, it has no effect other than making your character start a Focus animation.

A Focus Attack that absorbs a hit actually costs some life. However, the lost life is grayed out and can be regained, provided you don't get hit. As soon as you are hit, you cannot regain any more life.

Note that it can only absorb one hit, so if Ken did his Fierce Shoryuken, although Ryu would absorb the first hit, the second and third hits would connect as usual.

The time taken to "Focus Absorb" a move means "fishing" for a Focus Attack is not very practical. So players who would go "Parry Hunting" in 3S are unable to do so here.

It appears that one can Focus through a low or high attack.

Focus Attacks cannot be done in the air.

You can be thrown out of a Focus Attack.

You still build your Revenge gauge when "Absorbing" a hit.

  • LEVEL 2

After the initial press of the MP + MK buttons, you can keep holding the buttons down. As you do so, your character will keep "charging up" his/her Focus Attack.

You can let go of the buttons at any time to perform a Focus Attack proper. The longer the buttons are held, the more damage is done. You can combo into the Focus Attack with some characters, such as Crimson Viper.

  • LEVEL 3

After a certain amount of time, the Focus Attack is simply released of it's own accord. When it does so, an "ink splatter" effect is applied to the screen.

This attack is unblockable, does good damage and sends your opponent into a "crumpled" state. You can be thrown or hit out of a Level 3 Focus attack early on in it's animation, although you become invulnerable when the character starts glowing white.

Crumpled State

In this state, an opponent is helpless. You get a free hit on them, which can be comboed into. However, the Crumpled state is quite strange, the opponent is not as easy to combo as if they were stunned normally. You only have a finite time to hit the opponent when they are crumpled.

It's typically best to unleash your Ultra Combo if you have it when you crumple your opponent, as it's guaranteed to connect.

During Crumple state, there are two stages the opponent goes through before falling to the ground. The first stage is a very vulnerable one... the opponent can be hit with nearly anything (as if they were just standing there).

However, if you are too late, the opponent falls and you lose the ability to hit them with a full combo. I believe you can only hit them once, and they will drop afterward. Thus, it is recommended to dash after seeing a Focus Attack connect successfully. Your window of opportunity to combo shrinks dramatically if you do not dash forward... not only because of timing but because of distance.

Focus Canceling

Some special and normal attacks can be "Focus Canceled" by pressing and holding the MP + MK buttons as a special or normal move connects. This can be used to combo a special attack into a Focus Attack with some characters.

However, you can then take this one stage further by dashing forward or backward when holding the MP + MK buttons. Doing so costs two stocks (50%) of your Super meter.

Dash Canceling a Focus Attack has NO cost.


Dashing is performed by tapping the stick forward twice or backward twice. Backward dash has limited invincibility frames, even if backdashing in the corner. Forward dash speed, backward dash speed, and the invincibility/airborne frames for backdashing vary by character:

Character Forward Dash Backdash Invincible Grounded Airborne Distance
Abel 16 25 1~8 9~18 short
Akuma 18 25 1~8 9 10~18 normal
Blanka 21 26 1~8 9~19 long
Boxer 18 24 1~8 9~17 long
C. Viper 19 27 1~8 9~17 long
Chun 15 22 1~8 9~18 long
Claw 20 22 1~8 9 10~19 long
Dhalsim 32 29 1~8 9 10~18 long
Dictator 17 25 1~8 9~17 normal
El Fuerte 16 19 1~7 8~12 short
Guile 19 26 1~8 9~19 normal
Honda 19 27 1~8 9 10~18 normal
Ken 18 27 1~8 short
Rufus 20 27 1~8 9 10~25 normal
Ryu 18 27 1~8 9 10~18 short
Sagat 18 29 1~8 9~23 normal
Zangief 26 26 1~8 9~16 short

Because Level 1 Focus Attacks have the same stun regardless of hit, guard, or character, forward dash speed also determines how much disadvantage you have after Dash Canceling a Focus Attack. For instance, Chun has +1, Abel and Fuerte neutral, Dictator -1, everyone else increasing disadvantage.

Revenge Gauge

As your character receives damage, his or her Revenge gauge will rise. Once it gets beyond the white line on the circular gauge, you are able to perform your character’s Ultra Combo (usually performed by performing the super motion using all three punches or kicks).

Even after your Ultra meter rises past the white line, it will still charge. This affects how much damage an Ultra Combo does. If your Ultra is at max, and you land it, it will do huge damage.

EX Specials

Completing a Special motion by pressing two punch or kick buttons instead of one changes the properties of the move. This uses up one stock (25%) of your super meter.

Super Moves

Super moves usually require doing the motion for a special move twice, e.g. QCF, QCF + P. This uses up four stocks (100%) of your super meter.

Super meter is filled by doing special moves, or by connecting with a normal move. Whiffed normal moves do not fill super meter. The move lists for each character show how many points a move adds to the super meter. There are 1,000 points in a full meter.



Throws are performed by tilting the stick forward or neutral or backward, then pressing LP + LK. Normal throws hit on the third and fourth frame, making them some of the fastest normal moves in the game. Throws will connect against a guarding opponent, or during the startup of an opponent's attack. Throws will not connect against an airborne or knocked down opponent, against an opponent who is still in guard or hit stun following an attack or if they hit at the same time as an opponent's attack. Some characters have command throws that involve different joystick motions and have different properties.

Normal throws can be escaped by pressing LP + LK within 10 frames of the opponent starting to throw (within 7 frames of the throw hitting). Command throws cannot be escaped, but jumping can avoid them, as can properly timed or invincible attacks. Joystick motions during a throw escape don't matter, so you can for instance hold down/back on the stick and press LP + LK. This will result in an escape if the opponent tried to throw, and a crouching attack if they did something else.


Quick Recovery

Press down on the stick, or any two buttons, in order to get up faster when knocked down.



Armor Moves and Armor-Breaking Moves

Some moves in the game grant "armor" to a character. For example Zangief's EX Bear Grab can absorb one hit. Focus Attacks also grant armor if timed correctly.

However, some moves in the game are also considered to be "Armour-Breaking." That is to say, any armor will be negated by the move in question. For example, Blanka can negate Dhalsim's Focus Attack with a Blanka Ball.


The Characters

Arcade Characters

Console Characters

Game Versions