Samurai Shodown V Special

The previous thread was over five years old and didn’t have any hugely important information, so I decided to make a new thread for, hands-down, my favorite SNK fighting game.

Universal character stuff:

:snka: Light attack
:snkb: Medium attack
:snka: + :snkb: Heavy attack

:snkc: Kick
:r: + :snkc: Forward-moving kick, knocks down and moves forward for almost all characters
:df: + :snkc: Sweep

Hold :snkd: Meditate, which lowers your rage gauge in exchange for moving the needle above your life gauge forward, both of which are discussed later.

:l: + :snkd: Hop in place. Avoids throws and low attacks.
:d: + :snkd: Lie down. Avoids throws and high attacks.
:r: + :snkd: hop forward. If you’re next to your opponent when you perform this you will hop to his opposite side. Avoids lows, but IIRC doesn’t avoid throws.
:db: + :snkd: roll backwards. Note that these aren’t your usual-style SNK rolls, you can be hit during almost all of it, as well as being thrown out of them.
:df: + :snkd: roll forward. See above.
:qcb: :r: + :snkd: Sword parry. If this catches a weapon attack (kicks and unarmed attacks don’t count), your opponent will be stunned for a second. In addition, if you perform this successfully while unarmed, you will disarm your opponent. Classy.

:snkb: :snkc: universal overhead. These are really useful in this game, they’re fast, knock down, and often evade lows.
:df: + :snkb: + :snkc: (when opponent is down) light pursuit attack. Tack on damage when you’re next to a fallen opponent.
:uf: + :snkb: + :snkc: heavy pursuit attack. Since these are risky, they’re usually only used after specific attacks or combos (for example, Yoshitora’s :qcf: + :snkb: )

:l: or :r: + :snkc: :snkd: Grab. These work a bit differently than most games; the grab attack stuns them and pushes them forward or backward, and then every character has a canned followup they can use by pressing any slash button, or if they’re fast enough they can use another followup.

Rage Gauge:

The gauge at the bottom of the screen is your rage gauge. Whenever you get hit, this gauge increases. When it reaches maximum, your moves do much more damage, and the properties for some of your special moves change. In addition, every character has a super move performed with :qcb: + :snkc: :snkd: which disarms your opponent if it hits them, in addition to dealing lots of damage.

:snka: :snkb: :snkc: Rage explosion. This carries two advantages: one, it can be done during hitstun and knocks your opponent back, getting you out of combos, Guilty Gear style. Secondly, you get a full rage gauge. However, this carries a stiff penalty: if you perform this move, your rage gauge will be gone for the rest of the match after it empties.

:snkb: :snkc: :snkd: State of Nothingness. To perform this move, you need to meet several requirements: you must have lost a round, and your life gauge must be lower than the little needle above your life gauge. You can move the needle further up your life gauge by meditating, as said earlier. In addition, the more you meditate, the longer State of Nothingness will last. When you enter State of Nothingness, your opponent will move super-slow, and will be trapped in hitstun a LOT longer than usual. During State of Nothingness, if you press :snkb: :snkc: :snkd: again, you will perform an Issen, a super-fast dashing slash that combos off of almost anything, does lots of damage, and ends your State of Nothingness.

Stamina Gauge:

This is located just below your lifebar. When you do attacks, this bar decreases. The stronger the attack, the bigger the decrease. The lower the bar, the less damage you do. It refills when you don’t attack.

Stuff you’ll almost never see in the game:

Press 1P button three times: weapon-discarding taunt.

:l: :r: :df: :d: + 1P button: suicide. You instantly lose the round, but in return your rage gauge increases for the next round.

:qcb: + :snkc: :snkd: : FATALITY. To do this move, you must be raged, and
your opponent must have or be able to perform the State of Nothingness, meaning that he’s lost a round and is low on health. However, this move has a ton of invincibility and dashes forward, kind of like an Issen.

Tier list (in no particular order):






Tam Tam

For movelists and lots of pretty charts and graphs, check out Kao Megura’s FAQ on

I’ll start things off with one of my favorite characters, as well as one of my two mains, Yoshitora.

Yoshitora gained a bit of infamy for being the most broke-ass character ever who wasn’t a boss in SSV vanilla by having a really good air :snka: :snkb: and the absurdly good :qcf: + :snkb: , which gave him advantage on block and led to a super-easy infinite on hit, meaining that once Yoshitora hit you with ANYTHING, he would combo into :qcf: + :snkb: and either chip you to death, stall you to death, or infinite you to death.

There’s a reason no one plays Vanilla SSV.

Anyway, on to Special Yoshitora. Generally, Yoshitora’s moves have long range and high damage in exchange for being unsafe, so he’s very focused on being careful with what you use, though he does have several good safe moves. He’s kind of a jack-of-all-trades, in that he has a tool for most situations, but doesn’t excel at anything.


:qcf: + any slash : Oh my, how the mighty have fallen. A version hits low and knocks down, but is very unsafe; save it for comboing after a :snkb: attack. B version is still safe on hit, but has a longer startup. It’s a good move to use while on the advantage to throw your opponent off; if they panic and just block then you still have the advantage, and if they panic and try to attack then you can beat them out. AB version hits high, but whiffs the shorter characters.

:dp: + Slash: A decent dragon punch. Has a small bit of startup compared to other dp’s, and doesn’t have as much priority as other dp’s, but it has an awesome hitbox, hitting in front, behind, and above.

:qcb: + Slash: This move can only combo off of the first three hits of his close AB, but it does high damage (though not as much as you’d think it would).

:rdp: + Slash: This move has autoguard while Yoshitora’s swords flash. He doesn’t attack during the A version, but during the B and AB versions he performs a slash. You better make sure it hits, because it’s unsafe. :rdp: + :snka: into throw is a nice mixup, but it’s risky, especially against grapplers.

:qcf: + slash in air: Good priority and range and hits high. It’s also very quick, so you can do it right before you land and have a mixup between that and a low attack.

:dp: + :snkc: : WHY is this move blockable? This move has short range and is unsafe (big surprise), but is very quick. It makes a nice punishing move at close range.

:hcb: :r: + :snkb: :snkc: : Yoshitora launches a super-big wave that hits multiple times. You can only use it if you’ve hit your opponent with all six of your other special moves. However, you do not need to connect with all six of them in the same round. What’s more, you can only use it in the round that you connect with the sixth move.

:qcf: + :snkc: :snkd: : This move hits low and stays out for longer than it looks, but it has very short range and (natch) is punishable.

Other stuff:
His Jumping :snka: :snkb: is probably his best normal: huge range, stays out forever, hits multiple times, and does nice damage. If you space it properly, you can whore it out and stay out of most grab ranges.

Standing :snka: :snkb: has a huge range both vertical and horizontal, it’s like half the screen, and it hits five times, but it’s punishable by everyone at every range on block.

Yoshitora takes a long time to pick up his weapon, but your opponent can be hit by his longsword when he picks it up.

Yoshitora has to be really careful against grapplers. A single mis-used jumping :snka: :snkb: against Gaira or Kusaragedo can mean you lose half your life on hit.

This looks like it’ll be nice :slight_smile: Anyway there a lot of information on

B version of this move is one of Yoshitora’s most useful tools. It is a slow startup slash that leaves you safe on block and allows you to easily hit confirm a guaranteed big pursuit if it hits.

The AB version is also useful as an anti-air against some characters, and is very useful up against Gaira and Kusaregedo since they get hit by it while standing.

While this move is no doubt his most dreadful move, it does a high amount of chip damage, second only to Kyoshiro’s Super.

You can also cancel into this move from a back roll, backdash, or a universal overhead, in all cases this hits as an overhead. Can also be performed with a tiger knee motion from the ground as anti air.

This move as pretty good priority and thus will be able to beat some attacks up close. The best application for this move is to use it after a roll or lie down since you can cancel into it and it comes out quickly. Rolling under a projectile and cancelling into this for a quick punish can be useful at times. Don’t fall for the temptation to gamble that it will hit, because that will kill you quickly. Use it only when you “know” it will hit.

Yoshitora’s super is not terribly useful, since it is very punishable, but it has a huge amount of invulnerability and will thwart most other moves. The fact that it hits low won’t help very much since the move is telegraphed by the darkening screen and super sound effect. You can cancel the close AB into this.

Unfortunately the list I would link you to I cannot find at the moment due to the forums where they are located sees to be down. From the top of my head, they look something like this:













I’m not sure if it should be used for this. I haven’t been able to play ssvsp in a while (damned research paper), but from what I’ve seen that move has shorter range, more pushback, and lower priority than other moves used for stonewalling/chipping (Shizumaru’s fan spin, Ukyo’s apple-toss, etc.). Using it in the corner means you’re left vulnerable during recovery, and using it at midscreen, even the A version IIRC, means that the opponent gets knocked back quickly and you get a heavy slash to the face.

If I weren’t lazy, I’d add this to the writeup, but just to add more: Yoshi’s B moves are useful poking tools. Standing far B hits a total of three times, and people who aren’t used to Yoshitora can get tricked into trying to sneak in an attack between hits. His B moves can also combo into :qcf: + :snka: .

Thanks for the tips on his :dp: + :snkc:, by the way.

Allow me to clarify. This move should never, ever be used unless you are sure it will kill the opponent, or you somehow connect a close range AB. Everyone can easily punish this move on block.

That being said, the short range is deceptive on this one, because somehow each blocked hit ticks for much more than other specials and supers do.

About his normals, I haven’t seen you mention some of the best ones in his arsenal. The standing :snka:, the jump :snkb: and :snka:, and the crouching :snka: + :snkb:.


Also, one of Yoshitora’s problems is his inability to do big damage with single hits. This is a bad disadvantage to have in the last round, because every chance you get at doing high damage can be stopped with a rage explosion. The most single-hit damage you can do is from a middle strength Nadeshiko (:qcf:+:snkb:) into a high pursuit, or his super, and they are both slow to come out.

Another disadvantage is his horrible weapon recovery speed. If you lose your weapon as Yoshitora, you’re in big trouble.

What makes Rera so good? Also, are there any writeups for her, Charlotte, and Jubei?

Rera is completely insane once she is on the wolf. She then has access to heavy hitting normals that leave her on frame advantage on block and on hit, and that can be dash cancelled on hit and block, meaning you can cancel the slash into a dash after you hit.

The only good Rera user I know of is M216xLegendx, and he is an expert with her, so if anyone were to write about her, it should be him.

Charlotte dominates the air. She has a fast jump, amazing air normals, and a great anti-air with Power Gradation ( :dp: + slash). On the ground, poke with stand :snkb: , Violet Thrust ( :qcb: + slash), and Tri-Thrust ( :qcf: + slash). That’s the extent of my knowledge on her.

Jubei’s :qcf: + :snka: / :snkb: are awesome projectiles. They go really low to the ground, so they slides under most other fireballs and even a lot of reflectors. The :snka: :snkb: version is like Geese’s Double Reppuken: first swing absorbs projectiles, second swing sends a fireball, which chips three or four times. Jubei has three counters: :qcb: + :snka: counters crouching normals. :qcb: + :snkb: counters standing normals. :qcb: + :snkc: counters jumping attacks. His :snka: and :snkc: counters will counter special moves regardless of whether they hit high, low, or medium. His :dp: + slash attacks make him invincible while he is dashing. His :snka: :snkb: normals are all very slow and cumbersome, and his :snkb: moves, while good pokes, are a little on the slow side.

Please feel free to correct me on anything, I don’t use either character much.

EDIT: Also, what are some good anti-Kusaregedo tips?


So I played a few more matches and I’m beginning to suck less with Yoshitora. I had really underestimated the strength of his :qcf: + :snkb: . It leads to an absolutely wicked mixup: if they block high, use :d: + :snka: :snkb: , if they block low, use an air :qcf: + :snka: / :snkb: tiger knee’d from a :snkb: :snkc: . If they try to go for a throw, lie down/hop and :dp: + :snkc: . All three of these knock down. His sweep is safe, and his air slash moves him back, and you can confirm his :dp: + :snkc: from a lie down/hop in your sleep.

Third bump. Sorry, I know it’s frowned upon, but I’m only doing this because I found out something that I haven’t seen posted anywhere else.

Apparently, if you combo two one-hit hard attacks in a row, the enemy will be knocked down instead of just going into hitstun. However, if you do something else in between the two hard attacks, the opponent will not be knocked down. This takes effect in both normal gameplay and both state of nothingness. For example, if Jubei activates state of nothingness and goes :snka: + :snkb: = :snka: + :snkb: , the oppoent will be knocked down on the second attack (assuming it hits, of course). However, if he goes :snka: + :snkb: = :snkb: = :snka: + :snkb: , the opponent will not be knocked down. This applies for all one-hit hard slashes that normally result in hitstun, including jumping and crouching ones.

EDIT: oh, and there are four characters that get hit by Yoshitora’s :qcf: + :snka: + :snkb: while standing : Mizuki, Kusaregedo, Gaira, and Zankuro.

can anyone give me any strats or point me to any write-ups for the following characters:

suija, hanzo, galford

I used to love this game. Played it all the time online. My biggest issue getting back into it is that I played it with a pad that had all sorts of shortcuts set up, and now I play on a stick and have no idea how to control the game.

would love to see a port of this on XBLA.

I have SSZero on PS2 and it’s awesome. would love to try the special version.

Black Shroud has written essay’s on this game.

Suija is god tier. Everyone else has a chance.

Anyone know of a good SS forum BESIDES SamuraiSpiritsForever? I’ve signed up 2 or 3 times and they never send me my password (which you need to even lurk over there. X_X )

anyway to get SS5sp in the US? Anthology only has vanilla 5.

Or, is there even a point since Anthology has SS6? Which game is most played by people? (5sp or 6?)

i wouldn’t say she dominates the air, but i’ll add a few things.
Charlotte 5 middle slash is good. but her 5 and 2 heavy slash is awesome. its because its comes out extremely fast and has massive reach in conjunction with that speed.
keep in mind unlike the vast majority of the cast…she has her weapon in the hand that is at all times facing the opponent.
unlike a character that always has to draw their sword from its scabbard and is drawn with the hand that is furthest away from the opponent.
in other words her sword has less area to travel before striking the opponent, therefore it “telegraphs” less in the eyes of any player whos facing up against her. its hard to read.
she’s a fencer.
so think like a fencer.
poke, jab, and stab with her middle and heavy slash as much as you can.
Violet Thrust has massive massive reach and is a great keep away.
her Tri-Thrust is great for pushing a turtling opponent into the corner…and great for widdling down an opponent’s life bar when its really low. the only way to really defend yourself against it is with hyper guard if your health is really low.
her projectile is pretty safe for her since its has great height to it and is a good anti-air since its pretty hard to jump over for some characters.
if your playing SS6, i recommend customizing spirits 1 and 5 for her. those are her best spirits, imo.

Anyone still play this?