How To Train In SSFIV

Hi guys, I’m new on the forums so forgive me if this has been posted or is in the wrong section, but I’ve searched and haven’t really found anything on this.

But my question is this, how do you guys actually train to get better? I feel as though I’ve reached a plateau and I’m not very good as it is. It’s sort of frustrating training for a couple of hours a day just to be beat by my friends who don’t even play as often as I do. I’m not trying to learn the basics or anything, I’m just wondering, what is the, in your opinion, best method to improve in SSFIV.


I should also clarify, when I said that I’m not trying to learn the basics, what I’m saying is I KNOW the basics, pretty much, but implementing all these techniques and such to help me win games is the hard part…

Play more matches against people that are better than your friends. Play people online, if someone beats you ask them for a few more matches, try to think where you went wrong after every match and try different things. “Ok… he kept jumping in on me so this time I won’t throw any fireballs… just anti-air.” Read up and know your matchups. Learn what moves you can punish that your friends do… and which you cant. For me, its easyer to learn one new thing at a time. ex. Learn how to anti-air… when you get that down after maybe a week or 2 of knowing that you can stop 80% of all jump in’s move on. Learn a punishing combo. Anything that does more damage than a throw. Be able to throw it out everytime they screw up will help your game. Just take it a little at a time. Collect information, all the time.

Man it should be 1000% mandatory to post your character in this forum. That’d make things so much easier…

Anyway, training mode to learn your combos and then play people to get matchup experience and whatnot. Observe what they do and why. Learn the game engine and the mechanics of the game. Learn footsies. Try to apply as much as you can per match as possible. Learn your character’s strengths and weaknesses. Amplify your strengths and minimize your weaknesses.

If you play a character with bad defense, never go on the defensive. If you play a character with a great zoning game, never let the opponent get close. Experiment every match and learn every match. That’s how you improve.

and what basics do you KNOW?

When you say you know the basics, do you know ALL of your characters normal moves by heart (including neutral jump attacks vs. diagonal jump attacks, etc.), and which ones apply in what situations (what your anti-air is, what moves have high priority, what links into what, etc.)? Do you know all their specials and what each special can be canceled into from? These are all EXTREMELY important foundations you need to know to succeed, because they are for one thing a huge part of your game on both offense and defense, and are the fundamentals to all combos.

Moving on from that, playing ranked matches online really won’t help you, as one match against a different opponent with a different playstyle one after another won’t teach you anything. What you need is a sparring partner, which can be found on these forums (or better yet get one of your friends who is starting to really get into the game to come spar with you, offline > online), who can play with you over and over. This will teach you to learn to read your opponents playstyle and how to adapt to it, which transfers over from opponent to opponent far more easily than you would think.

Also, something I should have mentioned at the start is that you MUST know the range of all of your attacks, that includes normals, specials, ultras and super. This is important for both combo building as well as playing footsies. Learn the pokes of your character to properly play footsies, and check the stickies in this forum as well as the topic in the “Fighting Games” forum on this site called “Footsies guide…” (you can just search for it). These will teach you the basics of zoning and footsies, which are EXTREMELY important in SF4.

And finally, choose ONE character and stick with it until you’re comfortable. You will not improve in the slightest alternating between characters, you have to completely learn a single character before you can get anywhere in this game.

I know these rules sound strict but it’s by far the easiest way to improve.

Thanks for the responses guys, this is helping a lot… Keep 'em coming.

Also, I’m sorry I forgot to mention that my main character is Akuma, if that helps. Thanks again.

Thank you that was very helpful. As far as basics, I know for the most part, but I can’t really say it’s second nature. What method do you suggest I use for all these concepts to sit in my mind? In other words, how can I make it second nature?

i hear actually playing helps, but don’t quote me on this.

Like the guy above me rudely stated, the best way to make it second nature is practice, practice, practice. That’s why I recommended the sparring partner, two birds with one stone (learning to adapt to playstyles and learning to incorporate all the basics).

And booty, questions asked here are generally meant to come off a little noobish, if you’re gonna be a dick don’t bother posting.

Training mode. Use the record function to practice your anti airs, pokes, punishes, etc.

Actually playing SSFIV? I’ve gotta try that.

I keeps it really real for real, SON! Can’t handle the realness? Stay real.

get an sparryng partner with similar skills for a few weeks or maybe a couple of months, that’s a good point to start with. After that, you have to look forward for more skilled opponents.