Playing against grapplers? [KoF'98]

For years I’ve played KoF for enjoyment in single mode now and then, but eventually I got more or less familiar with it, and decided to go online via Fightcade. I’ve played several matches and turned out my skill was more or less ok, until I ran into grapplers. Then this happened: (from about the middle of the video starts the part where I can barely take out his first character).

It was my first time against a good grappler player online. There was some lag so if occasionally I do something really stupid (like Terry’s f+A), that’s probably it. (Plus it was my 5th game vs a living opponent overall)

I admit I don’t usually use grapplers, but playing against Vice made me reconsider. My biggest avoidable mistake was not blocking low, I realized it halfway through the games. Vice can and does cancel cr.B, and that hurt me more than anything else.

But beyond that, there are certain tactics I’m not sure I know how to respond to: for the most part, the player used rolls to get behind me while I did standing attacks, then use an invincible throw. I didn’t know Vice very well, so I assumed it was not invincible, but on the 10th grab it became apparent that it was (confirmed through FBA with collision boxes turned on).

It’s pretty hard to react to, and I didn’t use throws as much as I had to in that match. But what surprised me was how easily he could roll behind me and just do a throw—I never could hit him on the ending frames of the roll. I again checked this in FBA: the results were inconsistent, but 50% of time I could roll behind a player who mashed cr.B or cr.A and grab him with an invincible throw.

The obvious choices are to hop with/without attack, or simply move away from them. But it requires reaction, or maybe better reads. Plus, something irks me about just escaping from a grappler—I wish their actions made them eat a dip hit and a combo off it, but it just doesn’t happen, plus grab whiff animations are ridiculously short. People also suggested meaties to me… but it requires a precise timing, because the character has to attack in the correct direction. With a normal grab, this isn’t a problem, because you can press forward or back and the grab will still come out.

So I think like I’m in an unequal situation here… Please help!

You aren’t doing enough hops, You’re staying on the ground which is where a grappler wants you to be. Also, you shouldn’t be doing dps or wake up attacks in general, most of them time you’ll get punish by a roll and a grab for half of your life.

Player1 just abused Roll + command throw too frequently. There are several ways to effectively counter it.

  1. 2B or 2A to counter roll: a roll has 22 invincible frames, and only 11 frames vulnerable before recovery. So you need good read and accurate execution (do not hit 2B repeatedly) to counter it. 2A is more recommended than 2B if the lag is high.
  2. any throw to counter roll: during the 33 frames whole process, a roll is completely throwable. So use your own throw against his roll.
  3. hops + deep jump attack (like robert JD etc) to counter throw: see the above post. also, you need to punish opponent by using jump attack.

Sometimes you use heavy kick a lot, which is not very effective against roll due to slow recovery (except terry’s close 5D). Kyo’s 5D takes 31 frames to complete, and if your opponent roll at the same time, it leaves you only 2 frames to act against his throw, not sufficient to initiate any ground normal (then you have to hop).

A real good grappler will use high priority normals to lock you down, then do throw mixup (no rolling) that is very difficult to read and counter (like Daimon). Shifting bewteen stand guard and crouch guard can give you instant un-throwability (during the process of guarding, the character is completely un-thowable).