The King of Fighters XIII/Benimaru

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The King of Fighters XIIIKOFXIIILogo.png
The King of Fighters XIII/System GuideThe King of Fighters XIII#Game ElementsThe King of Fighters XIII#CharactersThe King of Fighters XIII/SystemsThe King of Fighters XIII#Fun StuffThe King of Fighters XIII/StrategyMvC3HeaderButtons.png

Benimaru Nikaido

KOFXIII-Benimaru Face.png

In a nutshell

Fill this in with a general overview of the character.

Video Walkthrough

Move List

Normal Moves

Special Properties (glossary)
Standing Light Punch
Chaincancel.png Cancel.png
Standing Light Kick
Standing Heavy Punch
Close Heavy Punch
Close Kof.sp.png
Standing Heavy Kick
Close Heavy Kick
Crouching Light Punch
D.png + Kof.lp.png
Chaincancel.png Cancel.png
Crouching Light Kick
D.png +
Low.png Chaincancel.png Cancel.png
Crouching Heavy Punch
D.png + Kof.sp.png
Crouching Heavy Kick
D.png +
Low.png Softknockdown.png Cancel.png
Blowback Attack
Kof.sp.png +
Softknockdown.png Specialcancel.png
Jumping Light Punch
Air Kof.lp.png
Jump: 45
Hop: 40
High.png Cancel.png
Jumping Light Kick
Jump: 45
Hop: 40
High.png Cancel.png
Jumping Heavy Punch
Air Kof.sp.png
Jump: 72
Hop: 70
High.png Cancel.png
Jumping Heavy Kick
Jump: 70
Hop: 68
Jumping Blowback Attack
Air Kof.sp.png +
Jump: 90
Hop: 80
Softknockdown.png Cancel.png

Unique Attacks

Special Properties (glossary)
Jackknife Kick
F.png +
Lowerbodyinv.png Specialcancel.png
Flying Drill
Air D.png +


Special Properties (glossary)
Catch and Shoot
F.png or B.png + Kof.sp.png or (While Close)
Throw.png Softknockdown.png
Spinning Knee Drop
Air F.png or B.png + Kof.sp.png (While Close)
Airthrow.png Hardknockdown.png

Special Moves

Special Properties (glossary)
Qcf.png + P.png
P.png : 35×2
Ex.png : 50×3
Air Ex.png : 50×4
Ground: Supercancel.png
Ground Kof.sp.png and Ex.png : Softknockdown.png
Benimaru Lancer
Qcb.png + P.png
P.png : 35×2
Ex.png : 150
Super Inazuma Kick
Dp.png + K.png : 60 (Lightning Strike) : 40 : 70 (Lightning Strike) : 50
Ex.png : 80+30×2
Startupinv.png Drivecancel.png
Qcf.png + K.png
K.png : 45
Ex.png : 70
Handou Sandangeri
After Iaigeri,
D.png U.png + K.png : 40 : 50
Ex.png : 70+50×3
Benimaru Collider
Hcb.png F.png + P.png
P.png : 13×15
Ex.png : 15×15
P.png : Hardknockdown.png
Ex.png : Crumple.png

Desperation Moves

Special Properties (glossary)
Qcf.png Qcf.png + P.png
P.png : 35×4+60
Ex.png : 27×9+70
Softknockdown.png Maxcancel.png
Ex.png : Startupinv.png
Rolling Thunder
Qcb.png Qcb.png + P.png
Startupinv.png Softknockdown.png
Qcf.png Qcf.png + +
(Can be directed Uf.png or Df.png after activation)

Apprentice Combos


Move Analysis

Normal Moves

  • Standing Light Punch (Snka.gif) - A standard, Standing Light Punch anti-air attack. Usually Standing Light Kick is the better anti-air against hops; and angles of jumps that Standing Light Kick can't cover but Standing Light Punch could is covered better by Close Heavy Punch/Kick or a Super Inazuma Kick (Dp.gif + Kick.gif).
  • Standing Light Kick (Snkb.gif) - One of Benimaru's best anti-air attacks. This move is quick, has little recovery, and has long range. So. it's difficult to punish with a sweep at times, especially when Benimaru follows up immediately with a Standing Heavy Kick that goes over most crouching attacks and is fast enough to counter poke most sweeps before the sweep come out. Sometimes, a myriad of Standing Light Kicks and Standing Heavy Kicks encourages the opponent to try to full jump or super jump to get over both normal moves while staying outside of the hop range. In this case, it's easy for Benimaru to react to that sort of jump and anti-air with a Super Inazuma Kick (Dp.gif + Kick.gif).
  • Standing Heavy Punch (Snkc.gif) - In application, this move is a more damaging Standing Light Kick. It's faster than Standing Heavy Kick and is almost as horizontally long but whiffs against crouching opponents (the larger crouching characters such as Goro are exceptions.) This could reach and punish moves that Standing Heavy Kick is too slow to punish at times. Standing Heavy Punch is a good move to use instead of Standing Light Kick in terms of damage if the player is sure of the opponent going to hop. Due to the recovery compared to Standing Light Kick, it has more risk against sweeps and other attacks.
  • Close Heavy Punch (Close Snkc.gif) - Typical, fast Close Snkc.gif attack. Close Heavy Punch is faster than Close Heavy Kick but has a smaller window of time to confirm a cancel. The activation range is shorter than Close Heavy Kick; but in certain circumstances, the player may want to use Close Heavy Punch to punish an opponent's mistake given the spacing and the faster speed that Close Heavy Punch has over Close Heavy Kick.
  • Standing Heavy Kick (Snkd.gif) - One of the better grounded pokes in the game. This move is relatively fast and it beats a plethora of standing and crouching normal moves and there are just only a few attacks that could actually beat it such as Iori's sweep (risky for Iori though since his sweep is incredibly unsafe on block/whiff and Benimaru could easily respond with his own sweep to punish Iori). Due to its function as a sobat similar to Guile's Standing Forward Kick from the Street Fighter series, not only does Standing Heavy Kick goes over most low attacks but over most slides as well. Sometimes, both the Standing Heavy Kick and particular slides completely miss each other depending on timing and spacing.
    • Occasionally, this move acts as a preemptive anti-air from situations such as the opponent blocking two of Benimaru's Crouching Light Kicks and the opponent commits to a hop/jump afterwards only to be hit by an immediate Standing Heavy Kick.
    • Since this move covers a deal of ground space close to Benimaru, the opponent will be encouraged to approach from about mid to mid-close screen with a hop or a jump. In this case, Benimaru could readily anti-air the opponent with a Standing Light Kick, a Standing Heavy Punch, a Super Inazuma Kick (Dp.gif + Kick.gif), one of Benimaru's jumping normal moves, or an air throw. Just don't be caught being lazy and accidentally commit to a Standing Heavy Kick while the opponent is already at the peak of the opponent's hop.
  • Close Heavy Kick (Close Snkd.gif) - Benimaru's other close, heavy attack. Due to it's wider activation range than Close Heavy Punch, Close Heavy Kick could anti-air neutral jumps on reaction more easily and be used in frame traps such as going from Crouching Light Kick to Close Heavy Kick better than Close Heavy Punch could. This attack is also preferred in option select Close
    Snkc.gif / Snkd.gif situations.
  • Crouching Light Punch (Down.gif + Snka.gif) - Fast cancelable normal. Doesn't have much of a point since Crouching Light Kick is about just as fast, and Crouching Light Kick has longer range while at the same time hitting low. Crouching Light Punch might have some applications as a frame trap, but there are better set ups that the player could spend Benimaru's time on.
  • Crouching Light Kick (Down.gif + Snkb.gif) - Another one of Benimaru's great normals. Fast, cancelable, and mid ranged crouching attack that's great for pressuring and spacing Benimaru for setting up cross-up attempts. It's threatening because of its ability to break alternate guard attempts and confirms into decent damage with a knockdown. The opponent would rather try to block Crouching Light Kick most of the time rather than try to alternate guard against tick command throw attempts. One of the key functions of Benimaru's pressure. Crouching Light Kick is also good for shrinking under and punishing bad hop and jump attempts. It also could be used in pressuring blockstrings and frame traps such as canceling a Crouching Light Kick into a
    Raijinken (Qcf.gif + Punch.gif) and what not.
  • Crouching Heavy Punch (Down.gif + Snkc.gif) - A long, low-to-the-ground cancelable normal. It's Benimaru's longest normal move that could cancel into a special without knocking down the opponent. Crouching Heavy Punch is better as an anti-air this time around in King of Fighters XIII, but not by that much. As a crouching punch attack, of course it doesn't have low hitting properties. Mainly used in frame trap situations to continue pressure, such as after a blocked Crouching Light Kick blockstring. Similar to quite a number of Crouching Heavy Punches and Crouching Heavy Kicks in the game, this move could cancel upon whiff as well.
  • Crouching Heavy Kick (Down.gif + Snkd.gif) - Nice cancelable sweep. Has relatively moderate range amongst the cast, but it's one of the faster sweeps and works well to punish opponents. Also another tool to use in blockstring as it cancels as well. Could almost simultaneous control ground and airspace by canceling itself on whiff into Raijinken (Qcf.gif + Punch.gif) or any other anti-air Special Move.
  • Blowback Attack (Snkc.gif + Snkd.gif) - Similar but slightly slower and shorter in range than Standing Heavy Kick; but, it is cancelable on whiff and on hit like all Blowback Attacks. Doesn't have too much usage on its own or at all.
  • Jumping Light Punch (Air Snka.gif) - Has little to no point. Jumping Light Punch is irrelevant because the speed and the range it covers is outclassed better by all of the other jumping normal attacks Benimaru has.
  • Jumping Light Kick (Air Snkb.gif) - A fast jump in with good air-to-air and cross-up properties. Think of M. Bison's (Dictator) Jumping Forward Kick from the Street Fighter series. Due to the kind of hop and jump arc Benimaru has compared to any other character in King of Fighters series, Jumping Light Kick functions even better as an air-to-air. Given the situation just like with Jumping Heavy Kick, Benimaru could air-to-air an opponent and have enough time to land to run under the opponent as the opponent lands on the ground, thus setting up for a mix-up. Typically this happens as Benimaru connects his attack from the peak or descent from a hop as the opponent is hit from a full or super jump. If Benimaru air-to-airs an opponent that also hops, Benimaru is unlikely to be able to run under at all.
  • Jumping Heavy Punch (Air Snkc.gif) - An air-to-air normal that covers the range near Benimaru's head. Covers that range above Benimaru that Jumping Light Kick and Jumping Heavy Kick don't reach. Jumping Heavy Punch also doubles as an air throw option select. If the player executes Jumping Heavy Punch while holding Right.gif or Left.gif, there's a chance that the opponent might happen to jump or hop given the set up and be hit by an air throw, Spinning Knee Drop (Air Right.gif or Left.gif + Snkc.gif [While Close]) Given the proper spacing, this attack is known to cross-up.
  • Jumping Heavy Kick (Air Snkd.gif) - Great overall jumping attack. It works well as an air-to-ground, cross-up, air-to-air move. Although an air-to-ground, it has huge problems against certain slide attacks. As mentioned with Jumping Light Kick, this attack could set up into a run under opportunity given the correct air-to-air set up. Although a good air-to-air and has more horizontal range over Jumping Light Kick, it lacks the speed Jumping Light Kick has. Each move has its own utility and situation.
  • Jumping Blowback Attack (Air Snkc.gif + Snkd.gif) - This attack is an air-to-air attack similar to Jumping Heavy Kick, but angled and curved more upwards. In past games, the shape of this move in King of Fighters XIII was actually Benimaru's Neutral Jumping Heavy Kick. The previous Jumping Blowback Attack was a kick attack that was 45° angled downwards that was used often early during a hop as a frame trap that catches preemptive anti-air attempts by the opponent. Now that Benimaru could do Raijinken (Qcf.gif + Punch.gif) attacks during a hop this time around, it replaces the function that the old Jumping Blowback Attack had. So overall, the current Jumping Blowback Attack has little, if not, no useful application.

Unique Attacks

  • Jackknife Kick (Right.gif + Snkb.gif) - Although Jackknife Kick cancels from many of Benimaru's normal moves, it doesn't actually combo from any of them. Due to its slow speed, Jackknife Kick is mainly used to mix-up and stagger blockstrings to make the opponent mess up counter pokes or Guard Cancel Blowback timings. On its own, Jackknife Kick is too slow to be used as a practical anti-air attack.
  • Flying Drill (Air Downforward.gif + Snkd.gif) - An aerial, diving drill attack similar to Dhalsim's Drill Dives from the Street Fighter series. In this iteration of KOF, the Flying Drill doesn't induce much push back upon block as it used to. In past games, the push back made Flying Drill spaced away from the opponent upon landing, making the Flying Drill safe and giving neutral frame advantage. This allowed Benimaru go for a 50/50 mix-up in previous games. Now, the attack barely pushes the opponent back and it requires more minute spacing in order to make Flying Drill safe. The recovery feels about the same but the amount of blockstun induced upon an opponent feels decreased, making Benimaru move vulnerable to punishes, especially command throws. The actual descent of the Flying Drill is faster; as applied as a means of changing aerial momentum and direction, Flying Drill is still useful for running away from an opponent or maneuvering around projectiles.


  • Catch and Shoot (Right.gif or Left.gif + Snkc.gif or Snkd.gif [While Close]) - A standard throw. What makes this throw useful is the kind of option select mix-up it has.
    • As with most grapplers or characters with command throws if a knockdown is scored upon an opponent, the player may attempt a safe jump/hop set up and safely lead into an empty hop > command throw mix-up. Since the opponent should be scared in this situation and recognizes if the player does not do a jump-in attack, that the opponent wouldn't be able to alternate guard to force the command throw to miss. So, the opponent's option in this case would be to hop or jump out of the situation. If the player knows that the opponent will jump/hop, the player could have Benimaru (or any other character with a command throw) land and go for a normal throw (in Benimaru's case, his Catch and Shoot.)
      • If the opponent jumped/hopped, the opponent will be hit with a Close Heavy Punch or Heavy Kick since normal throws don't have whiff animations.
      • If the opponent, for whatever reason, decided to stay grounded, then the opponent will be thrown. Be cautious, more wary players might try to read this set-up and just tech Benimaru's normal throw. In this case, the mix-up would be an actual command throw.
  • Spinning Knee Drop (Air Right.gif or Left.gif + Snkc.gif [While Close]) - A simple aerial throw attack. Further details upon its option select is in the description for Jumping Heavy Punch.

Special Moves

  • Raijinken (Qcf.gif + Punch.gif) - A good chip-damage, pressure attack. Could be used as a preemptive anti-air. A common way of chipping/frame-trapping an opponent is by doing one or two Crouching Light Kicks then canceling the last one into Raijinken. Now in King of Fighters XIII, the Snkc.gif Version of Raijinken combos from Crouching Light Kick and knocks down the opponent upon hit. The Snka.gif Version remains similar to previous versions as it has slower start up, only being able to combo from a heavy hitting attack, and it doesn't knockdown. So the latter that has more start up is somewhat better for frametraps and blockstrings while the former is good for guaranteed chip in blockstrings and knocking down for combos. Both are susceptible to Guard Cancel Rolls and are punishable. The player has to make sure to creatively mix-up the blockstrings.
    • If the opponent is in the corner, knocked down, and is on the brink of losing the round, Benimaru could force a checkmate situation by finishing off the opponent with chip-damage by spacing the outer tangent of the Raijinken to touch the opponent. If the Opponent rolls forward on reversal, the opponent will roll into the opposite tangent and will get hit. Since the opponent is in the corner, the opponent will just roll backwards in the same spot and will still lose.
    • In certain cases an improperly spaced, blocked Raijinken may be punished by fast reversal attacks. For example, Iori could punish Raijinken simply with Ex.png Kin 1211 Shiki: Ya Otome
      (Down.gifDownforward.gifHcb.gif + Snka.gif + Snkc.gif). So be sure to know at what distances and in which blockstrings that Raijinken would or would not be safe against each character.
    • Ex.png Raijinken (Qcf.gif + Snka.gif + Snkc.gif) - Essentially a faster, safer variance of Snkc.gif Version Raijinken. Has similar application in addition to larger damage on hit and on block.
  • Air Raijinken (Air Qcf.gif + Punch.gif) - The application of this move warrants its own description separate from the grounded Raijinken. This attack returns with a bang, being able to initiate from a hop (as most previous iterations couldn't) and could be activated very close to the ground, "tiger-kneed" even. While the Snka.gif Version, upon a deep hit, will allow for a follow up combo, the Snkc.gif Version is safer to commit to on block as Benimaru is pushed away from the opponent after the attack. The Snka.gif Version is able to combo because Benimaru lands towards the opponent after the attack and be able to link a Close Heavy Punch and be able to combo further.
    • In previous KOF titles, Benimaru had a downward-angled Jumping Blowback Attack to hit at deeper angles that Benimaru would otherwise not reach. As Benimaru no longer has that kind of attack, being able to Raijinken from a hop covers that application he lost with Jumping Blowback Attack. It might not be the best substitute as the old Jumping Blowback Attack maintained the same aerial momentum (for better or worse) during the duration of the move. Air Raijinken at least gives the benefit of chip damage, change of direction depending on what type of Air Raijinken is used, and an opportunity for a combo given the correct setup.
    • Air Ex.png Raijinken (Air Qcf.gif + Snka.gif + Snkc.gif) - While a bit slower than the Snka.gif Version, this attack does more hits/damage and is able to confirm into a combo as well. After the attack is finished, Benimaru is dropped directly downwards from the air unlike the normal versions of Air Raijinken. Could be used in blockstring strings to frame trap and earn a full combo; just be wise to properly used Benimaru's meter and just not to simply burn it all on this attack.
  • Benimaru Lancer (Qcb.gif + Punch.gif) - This attack is comparable to Orochi Shermie's Takeru Mikadzuchi from King of Fighters 2002 Unlimited match. That is, both Takeru Mikadzuchi and Benimaru Lancer don't have much application what so ever. The best Benimaru Lancer could be used as on its own is as an anti-air against cross-ups and what not, but it's far too slow to be used in that application. So the best usage of this move is continuing juggles in Drive Combos and Hyper Drive Combos.
    • Ex.png Benimaru Lancer (Qcb.gif + Snka.gif + Snkc.gif) - This attack is even slower than the normal Lancer, but it has homing properties and a lightning strike lands upon the opponent's position as the move was initiated. So during times when the opponent is about to use a projectile, Benimaru could toss this move out to punish the opponent's start up. Don't use this move too generously as it's pretty easy to evade and Benimaru is left open for a punish, but use it as a means to check the opponent's willingness to use projectiles or any other stationary attacks.
  • Super Inazuma Kick (Dp.gif + Kick.gif) - The standard anti-air Special Move. This move has great vertical range that Benimaru's grounded Normal Moves don't cover. Super Inazuma Kick's lightning strike completely covers that vertical part of the play field, effectively being a complete wall. Of course, upon block or whiff either version of Super Inazuma Kick is unsafe and open to be punished. A very neat Kamen Rider/Gainax reference although it isn't a very dynamic dive/drop kick.
    • Ex.png Super Inazuma Kick (Dp.gif + Snkb.gif + Snkd.gif) - A more reliable Super Inazuma Kick for when the opponent is deeper on Benimaru. Better invincibility overall.
  • Iaigeri (Qcf.gif + Kick.gif) - One of Benimaru's safest special moves to end an attack string with. Even if the attack before it is Guard Cancel Rolled, Iaigeri should be able to recover in time for Benimaru to restart his pressure. So although it may not chip as well as his other special moves, it's the safest move to commit to on block. Upon hit, it is followed up by Handou Sandangeri (After Iaigeri, Down.gifUp.gif + Kick.gif) and does the most damage in a combo that doesn't require any Drive or Super meter.
    • Ex.png Iaigeri (Qcf.gif + Snkb.gif + Snkd.gif) - There is not much to say about this move as of yet. It is mainly used to Drive Cancel from a normal Handou Sandangeri (After Iaigeri, Down.gifUp.gif + Kick.gif) to finish a 1 Drive bar combo along with its follow up.
    • Handou Sandangeri (After Iaigeri, Down.gifUp.gif + Kick.gif) - Used to knock down after Iaigeri (Qcf.gif + Kick.gif). It's not safe on block so it's advised against to use it for chipping the opponent unless the situation calls for it, such as finishing off an opponent in a surprise manner. Otherwise, it's easy for the opponent to get a full punish upon block and even upon whiff.
  • Benimaru Collider (Hcb.gifRight.gif + Punch.gif) - Benimaru's electrifying command grab/throw. Although it may lack range compared to other command throws in the game, Benimaru could easily set up for the throw as his ability to get in and scare the opponent into blocking or hesitating is really good. Benimaru could easily break Alternate Guard attempts by having a fast, lengthy Crouching Light Kick that chains into itself as well and cancels into other attacks for the knockdown; it sets up for tick throws since the opponent will most likely think of blocking low than risk alternating between high or low because of a tick throw. Perhaps another Gunbuster reference.
    • Ex.png Benimaru Collider (Hcb.gifRight.gif + Snka.gif + Snkc.gif) - Similar application as the normal version, this attack induces a crumple state upon the opponent. Of course, this means the player may follow up with an attack to continue the combo.

Desperation Moves

  • Raikouken (Qcf.gifQcf.gif + Punch.gif) - A powered up verison of Raijinken (Qcf.gif + Punch.gif). Mainly used in combos and isn't particularly safe upon block or whiff so be sure to use this attack when it'll work. Note that this attack doesn't have much or any invulnerability and has a bit of significant start up so please do use it with care.
    • Ex.png Raikouken (Qcf.gif + Snka.gif + Snkc.gif) - A much faster and more orange version of Raikouken. Since it's relatively fast, it may be used to punish certain attacks on block or whiff. It's also fast enough to act as an anti-air depending on the spacing and situation.
  • Rolling Thunder (Qcb.gifQcb.gif + Punch.gif) - Very electrifying. Benimaru uses an electric field to encompass himself and covers the space around him quite well. It's an okay reversal attack to get the opponents off Benimaru a bit. It may not do as much damage as Ex.png Raikouken (Qcf.gif + Snka.gif + Snkc.gif) but certainly has a bit more utility and availability.
  • Raiouken (Qcf.gifQcf.gif + Snkb.gif + Snkd.gif) - A powered up version of Raikouken (Qcf.gifQcf.gif + Punch.gif). Although this attack travels full screen, it isn't fast enough to anti-air opponents like Joe's Neomax could. But, it's good enough to win in projectile wars and catch an opponent off guard.

Tips and Tricks


0% Drive

0 Bar

  • cr.B x3 xx qcf+K > du+K

50% Drive

100% Drive

Basic Strategy


  • Sirlin Wall of Normals


  • Sirlin Wall of Normals

Advanced Strategy

  • Use Benimaru's Stand: Silver Chariot.
  • Avenge Benimaru's sister's death by defeating J. Giel.
  • Try not to let Abdul or Iggy die trying to protect Benimaru.
  • Don't let Benimaru get possessed by Anubis.
  • Don't let Benimaru get killed by Crimson King. If he does, let his spirit reside in Coco Jumbo.

Frame Data