A problem against ken

Hey guys, i recently started playing Ibuki and am by no means a SF god but im learning and having a great time learning her stuff and playing with a joystick. Now the only person i play is a good friend of mine who plays Ken. The problem im having is i get the feeling that if im 0.0000000001 second to late with any inputs that i get a fierce shoryuken in my face and im in flames. He plays on the pad and its almost as if he is like putting in some type of crazy option select that throws out his shoryuken pretty much any time i fk up. But whats even more annoying is that i cant try and go on the offense on him or try and do combos or links or specials or anything cos he just holds downback blocks everything or when i whiff or miss something i get the shoryuken. Its extremelly ANNOYING.

The funny thing is is that he cant beat me with any other character and its pretty much always the shoryuken that messes me up and before i know it ive cracked and he starts hitting me with everything and i just lose all hope lol.

Now sometimes i block his shoryuken and i think ok great time to punish so i try the simple target combo 4 into neckbreaker, only one problem… i get the target combo out but right as Ibuki goes for the neckbreaker, yup you guessed it… Shoryuken. Now im guessing this is execution cos it should be a combo right that cant be hit out of or am i wrong? The next thing is say i get the target combo into the neckbreaker i think great vortex time… but most of the time he blocks which is fair enough or i hit him with the kunai and like even if i try to do anything else apart from target combo 4 into neckbreaker i just getting shoryukend out of it.

So i was just wondering if anyone had any advice or tips to help me out, i mean is it my timing, is it my execution or is Kens fierce shoryuken just the most over the top ridiculous moves in the game that beats everything, i wouldnt mind really but his FIERCE shoryuken seems to beat even my lightest/fastest attacks which is why im feeling that hes somehow putting it in as an option select or something. Sorry about the long rant but i would love some help on how to deal with this. To give you an idea of how this guy plays, he sits there blocking and constantly jumps in with a hard kick followed by a sweep and any retaliation by me is followed by a fierce shoryuken and ofcourse random ultras and supers are aplenty. Even in the air his kicks always come out faster, he hits me with everything exept if im on point with Ibukis air throw. Hes such a ridiculous character…

TC4 xx Neckbreaker should work on Ken, you’re probably just messing up your timing. It’s a very rhythmic combo, so time your button presses so that they’re an equal 1, 2, 3, 4, type combo. Think of like you’re dialing in a combo, which you are kind of, now you just need to get your left hand in sequence so that you make the half circle motion in time for the last input. lp, mp, hp, hp. Sometimes that combos whiff on certain characters, but I don’t believe Ken is one of those. As far as the vortex goes, you’re either doing it incorrectly, or doing it too predictably. If he’s able to shoryuken out of it, then your kunai timing is off, and he’s punishing you for it. If he’s doing a shoryuken out of your kunai and hitting you, then your spacing and timing is off, re-adjust. Be wary of dropping combos and attempting to go for links against this type of character. He’s probably just mashing the shit out of shoryuken whenever you’ve got him in blockstun, or during a kunai follow-up.

If he’s blocking all of your attacks, then he’s probably just blocking. Either go for the throw, or put him at the perfect spacing for another cross-up attempt, and continue your offense. Also consider using Ibuki’s overhead attacks. They’re quite slow, and pros can block it on reaction, but they’re great for catching people off guard, and you’re able to combo off a overhead fairly easy.

Ken’s fierce DP is actually not that great. It has minimal invulnerability compared to his MP shoryuken, and they’re easy to bait out and punish once you’ve got your kunai timing down. Just play patient against this type of Ken, and learn how to punish his whiffed DPs. If he learns that you’re unable to punish them, then he’s free to just do it whenever, and you might as well just lose. Also try learning your hit confirm combos, since they give you much more opportunities to land safe combos, at the expensive of sheer damage+stun.

As far as his jumping goes, you CANNOT let him jump in on you for free. Make good use of your b+mp, st.RH, cl.st.RH, and cr.fierce anti-airs to stop that shit. Random ultras are rarely random, scrubs usually always do that shit on wake-up, or mashed during an attack string. He sounds like a pretty scrubby Ken, so the key to this is the following:

[]play patient. If he’s willing to jump at you, let him, and simply anti-air him. That should stop him from doing random crap. If he’s getting smart and doing the step-kick, your st.jab will beat that shit clean.
]Push him into the corner. Shitty Kens like this tend to enjoy jumping back into their own corner and throw fireballs. Let him. Fireballs don’t scare Ibuki. She can overhead over them, focus dash through them, slide underneath them, or simply jump-forward or neutral-jump over it. If your reactions are good at mid-range, you can EX neckbreaker through it for a good punish, and the knockdown, and an opportunity to do bullshit kunai setups.
[*]If you’re in a position where you’re hitting him with TC4, or jabs, don’t be afraid to just stop your attack if you feel like he’s mashing dragon punch. Let him whiff, punish appropriately, and continue your offensive pressure during his wake-up. Just be sure to learn how to do a kunai setup safely against his fierce DP to make sure you don’t get reversal’d out of it. Training mode is your friend here. Test the setup against Ken to make sure it works.
This is usually enough to beat down flowchart Kens. Oh and if he starts to play conservatively and start blocking all of your stuff, just throw him. After a few of those, they tend to get dragon-punch happy again, so rinse and repeat your original game plan. Happy hunting!

Yeah, thanx for the help. We are both scrubs tbh lol, but your right what i was doing was just TC4 and then nothing to bait out his dp and your right about the mashing cos like i can hear him whenever i do pretty much anything to him he does the DP its insane. Im gonna go and practice all my kunai setups and combo timings cos i feel the inproper execution is whats getting me a lot of losses cos the amount of times i knock him down and do nothing with it is insane.

One more thing, i find the neckbreaker puts me at a great distance to start the kunai vortex but inbukis sweep really puts me at a weird distance and the timing and distance etc is just completely off. Do you have the time after a sweep to re adjust Ibuki and then jump? Also what is the best way to set up a DP ken in training mode cos i tried recording him just doing it over and over but its weird and doesnt seem accurate to how my friend does it.

Every time that DP comes out mid combo is because you’ve stuffed up. You left a gap in your attacks and so his reversal beat you. If you know your execution is bad, leave that gap on purpose and then block. If he does DP, punish accordingly, if he is just blocking then go back to applying pressure. What you want is for him to stop mashing so that you can then try full combo’s (and drop them) but not have to worry about getting a DP to the face.

Sweep is a tricky one as it depends on your innitial distance to the target. You’re gonna have to learn your distances better first to know whether you need to move slightly forward / back / super jump etc to make it a good set up.

To set the bot on mashing DP, not sure how other people do it but i like to sweep the bot, then pause it and switch it to record. Then second i un-pause it, i just start mashing DP like any scrub would had they have just been knocked down. The second i see that DP come out i pause it again switch to play back. Next i back up my character a bit and just watch the bot perform DP after DP to make sure there is no gap or down time in between them. Re-do this as many times as necessary to get rid of any gaps (if any). Also, i usually get it to mash LIGHT DP, not medium or heavy.

Yup, the key to beating mashers is patience. It teaches you an important lesson about how to read the momentum of the match though. You can sense their desperation as they try to bring momentum back on their side, and that’s when you back off, let them make a dumb risk, and punish punish punish. This is important as an Ibuki player. As clichè as it is, you have to be like water. Be willing to change according to how the match is being played, on a moment by moment basis. One moment you’ll have to play patient, utilize your pokes, and stop their attacks with simple jabs and cr.mks. At other times you have to press the advantage, and rush that shit down, unleashing your offensive pressure as best you can, and be willing to STOP when it’s no longer advantageous to you.

Your vortex can be started at any time when you sweep your opponent. You’ll just have to learn to adjust your spacing and timing. This can be done by moving yourself in position, use a super-jump instead of a regular jump, time your jump late or early, etc etc. It’s difficult to tell you in writing, but your best chance is to look up tutorial videos on Ibuki vortex on youtube (there’s at least 2), as well as review replay matches of great Ibukis such as Sako or Iyo. Hell you can check out ClakeyD, Mingo, and Izuna while you’re at it if you want some American Ibuki talent (fuck that Dragon God guy).

As far as setting up Ryu in DP mode. Start with Ken, and set dummy to Ibuki. Start Ibuki on record, and record her doing whatever knockdown into kunai setup that you want. You can do a simple sweep, or a 3-hit tsumuji using MK or HK, or a neckbreaker. Afterwards try a jump kunai. Set dummy to ‘playback’ and allow yourself to be knocked down by the dummy Ibuki. As Ken, mash the shit out of uppercut, as well as do perfect reversal DPs. Be sure to try all 4 versions of the DP (lp, mp, hp, ex). If Ibuki is safe from attack, then hey! You’ve won the game. If not, try to make little adjustments to your spacing or timing after the knockdown. Rinse and repeat. The same thing can be done if you want to test whether or not your kunai crosses up, but obviously instead of trying to DP, just try to block.

Wow, so your friend is basically a Flowchart Ken™, also known as “Xbox Live Ken™”.

Aside from eltrouble’s very good advices, I’d like to add some stuff:

  • The reason why he kicks your ass by only mashing Shoryuken is because shoryuken is invincible on startup. This means that, whatever your timing is with a, say LP, the best thing you can get is to trade hits (and you’re obviously looser if this happens). Otherwise he won’t get hit by LP (or any normal) as he is invincible on startup.
  • There are many reasons why you are getting punished by his shoryus. here are some of them:
  1. You are choosing the wrong solutions. If he blocks you, you should only end your combo by a LK Tsumuji. This will get some cheap damage and he can’t punish it with Shoryuken. (if he tries, he’ll just fly around and you can punish it). If you end your blocked combo with anything else (say, the worst choice ever would be neckbreaker), he’ll obviously have time to shoryuken. So first of all: make sure that whenever he blocks you, he’s NOT ABLE to just braindead mash shoryuken and beat you. Another thing you need for that:
  2. Whenever he blocks you, you are not doing true blockstrings, ie. you leave some open frames in your combo and allow him to MASH THE HELL OUT. Let’s be simple: to avoid that, you have to remember a few thing. If you’re jumping at him (which you shouldn’t do randomly, of course), use HP. Or MK. If you use LK and he blocks, he has time to shoryu before you hit again. Then: if he blocks your jump, use either the target LP MP HP xx LK Tsumuji which IS a true blockstring (if he mashes, nothing comes out, except a stupid SRK at the end of your string -> free punish); or juste use cr.LP cr.LP and STOP (if he mashes, he’ll shoryu after the second cr.LP -> Punish time! ). So, now he’s not able to mash ANYTHING if he’s standing. There is a last thing needed: to avoid wakeup shoryus
  3. So if he’s flowchart enough, he’ll just mash shoryuken on wakeup. Or even ultra (stayyy freeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee). Now, you should make sure he does NOT want to mash shoryuken. Use jumps that will beat his shoryus, use Kunais that will stuff his shoryus as well, so next time he wakes up, he’ll think "okay, I should block because if I mash he’ll just beat me again). For this, check out this [advertisement]**truly awesome thread about Ibuki’s pressure when your opponent is down (page 2 ): **Don’t let them take a breathe! Ibuki’s safe jump & vortex thread [/advertisement] . This thread regroups ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW if you want to keep pressure when he’s down (and if you are playing Ibuki, this is exactly what you want). Check out the list of kunai possibilities to stuff a shoryu, the safe jump list, and also, against Ken, try to practice the unblockable! it’s VERY easy to do and extremely efficient. I know it’s cheap, but now I just get rid of mashers by only using continuously the unblockable (as I’m not having fun playing against a stupid masher, i’d rather finish the fight quickly if I meet one and get to the next opponent). You cannot count the number of ragemails i received for that. TROLL TIME.
  • If you apply these 3 advices, you’ll make him always think before stupidly mashing. And you basically won, at least psychologically: you forced him to change his way of playing. Out of experience, you can’t believe how satisfying this is. Back in vanilla I used to play a Tiger uppercut - masher Sagat and got constantly hit by those. When I decided to learn safe jumps & blockstrings, it was extremely funny to see him sooo sad that nothing he did was working. Troll won again
  • Last thing: aside from anti-airing (as eltrouble said, btw I’d advise you for now to only anti-air with b.MP as it’s pretty hard to anti air with cl.st.HK ), you should know that if you block Ken’s sweep, you can punish him with… ultra 2. Work on your reactions, block his stupid sweeps and punish him HARD! Also, if you can just b.MP him each time he jumps, that’ll, again, make him think a bit before jumping

Now train a bit and kick this Ken’s ass!

tl,dr your friend is a mashing Ken so try playing the Ken cpu on hardest in a ft10. That will teach you how to bait dp’s and watch your blockstrings.

Wow thanx for all the help guys, i really am gonna follow up on all your advice. Lol its pretty cool that you guys have a name for this type of Ken player haha and i guess there are a lot of people that mash the shit out of DP and play in such a lame way. I really really think a big problem of mine is the execution, i find this in SF to be very unforgiving lol and i guess on the one hand its good to play and practice against this type of Ken cos i know i have to be perfect with my execution otherwise i go up in flames.

Also thnx for the tip on punishing his sweep with ultra 2, i did not know this and his usuall offence is jump in H. kick - Sweep, also i feel like such an idiot for just letting him jump in and only trying to block everything.

But im gonna practice, play him again in a few days and ill keep you all updated :slight_smile:

You mean this player?

Or this player?


Ken’s sweep is not punishable with U2 btw. I think he was referring to Ryu/Akuma’s sweep.

What would you guys say is the best punish for a blocked or whiffed shoryuken?


Jab shoryuken:
easy = st.MK xx Neckbreaker
medium = st.MK xx SJC U2
hard = st.MK xx Tsumuji loop

MP/HP/EX shoryuken:
dash up and
easy = TC4 xx Neckbreaker
medium = st.MP , st.MP , st.MK xx Neckbreaker (may or may not work)
hard = st.MP , st.MK xx Tsumuji loop

Also depends on what knockdown you want, if you want stun (eg: go for cl.st.HK mixups), mixup you want, if your opponent is in the corner (eg: go for EX Tsumuji ender), etc. The above listed are just basic bnb punishes.

Whoah whoah whoah, you CANNOT punish his sweep with Ultra2. If he’s jumping in on you with jump RH and sweep, just block it. He’s literally accomplishing nothing, and pushes you away, which is a win for you. Best option is to stop his jump-in in the first place with a good anti-air. And tbh, SF4 has pretty lenient execution in comparison to the older games. It’s just a hurdle that you’re going to have to overcome through diligent practice. While Ibuki can be very execution intensive at higher levels, at these basic levels, it’s more about learning how to play her in a safe manner, which can be very difficult if you’re not used to playing fighting games at a competitive level.

Her best combo is st.mp, st.mp, st.mk, neckbreaker. Although depending on the character and range, and you might only get away with doing a single st.mp, and st.mk into neckbreaker. If he whiffed a fierce DP, you can do a focus attack first to add a little extra damage. Also, it’s a free chance to use your ultra1 or ultra2 raw and do some serious damage with that. If you can’t do links yet, just do a simple TC4 x ex neckbreaker or something.


The scrub anthem.

Unless you have time to charge up to lvl 3 FA, which can be very difficult to hitconfirm and make sure you only charge FA when a non-jab dp is whiffed, then non FA combos will probably do more damage because of less scaling.

Lol its pretty hillarious, we played some more games today and he couldnt beat me with Ken lol it was hillarious, exept now hes switched to Ryu lol, so gotta work on that but its cool cos hes started actually playing better and hes discovered the throw button… lol :stuck_out_tongue:

But thanx for all the help you guys gave me its much appreciated.

Shit, I forgot Ken’s sweep is not punishable by U2, sorry.

As a matter of fact, I think it’s easier to beat Ryu than Ken, so you should feel relieved.

Glad to hear you worked him with Ken. You see what a little bit of advice can do for you? :slight_smile:

Now you’re going to have to start to get into the meat of SF4 game mechanics. Ryu is actually easier to deal with imo, since he has even fewer tools than Ken to get in on you. Continue to play patient, and look for opportunities to land the knockdown. Remember, you can EX neckbreaker his fireballs on reaction, not to mention you can slide underneath jump, jump over them, overhead over them, etc etc. You should effectively limit Ryu’s options to just play footsies.

Which is where the challenge begins. His cr.forward is a VERY good poke in this game to keep you out, but that’s all he has. If he’s whiffing it out randomly in front of you, get ready to punish it with either a cr.mk, cr.RH, or a f+lk xx tsumuji. That F+lk xx tsumuji only combos on counterhit, but if you feel it coming, don’t be afraid to throw it out. This is where you’re really going to learn how to use IBuki’s normals to win the match, because you dont’ have many other option. Occasionally if he sits still, you might be able to land a surpris cross-up on him, which he will block, and you’ll get an opportunity to land a throw or a frame trap or something.

This matchup is in your favor, moreso than Ken imo. Mostly because Ryu has no escape option for the unblockables. But you can learn that later. Focus on your footsie game and anti-air reactions.

Unblockalols ftw. God, I love the 2012 patch that doesn’t allow him to bounce out now.

Ken can’t escape the unblockalols either.

The reason why Ryu is easier imo is because he’s more centered around zoning compared to offensive pressure like Ken. And like you said, Ibuki can very easily shut down almost everybody’s projectile zoning game.

I thought Ken could bounce out of it as well with his FP shoryuken?

But yes, Ryu tends to sit still a lot more, whereas all Kens spam f+mk. Also his combos tend to hurt more.

Oh! And for Jazzy J. Your st.jab beats out Ken’s f+mk. Be prepared to focus attack through fireballs after Ryu does cr.forward xx fireball at max range. If it’s a true blockstring, you’ll block, if it hits you, it’ll hit, if not, you’ll focus through it. I think I said these tips already…oh well.

When done properly, his HP dp should completely whiff.