Zangief Beginners Thread

You’re just starting to learn Zangief, and you don’t know where to start. Well, this is the place to pick up on the beginning concepts for the character.

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Hope it’s okay to leave that video here. Let me know.

Here’s another great introduction to playing Zangief

Thank you.

I’m hoping one of you guys can help me understand framerate and such so I can become more competitive. I want to stay Z ad my main.

AznDreamer is my PSN ID. SFV ID: TeaBag

Hey guys! I’m new here to Shoryuken, and… well, kinda new to the FGC as a whole. I’ve been watching a lot for the past year or two, and always been in love. I picked up a stick during SFIV stuff, and attempted to learn but for some reason I felt really intimidated or lost. I’ve now bought SFV and I’m learning how to use the stick better, and looking to practice and better myself. I’ve decided as Zangief as a main for multiple reasons, and I was just looking for some advice/input.

As a really new player to fighting games as a whole aspiring to learn Zangief and better my play as a whole using Zangief as a medium, what should my goals be?

Thank you guys for any advice you have, it’s much appreciated, and I hope you all have a wonderful day :slight_smile:

I would say.

  1. Get comfortable using a stick - only way is practise.
  2. Learn the basics - e.g. Start with normals, then move onto specials & then combos, then mix ups, footsies etc.
  3. Enjoy it - the game is the most fun at this early stage when you are learning new stuff all the time, and seeing constant improvement.

This is a good read:

I have always found gief much easier on a pad. Only gief though.

Really? That’s interesting! May I ask why?

I kinda agree.
I’m a stick player myself but am able to play at the same skill level on pad with Gief (and only Gief)
I think its due to the ease of SPD these days, all you really need to learn is the feel of hitting up and lp/mp/hp at the same time when doing the motion.
Once that was nailed then it was plain sailing
He isnt a complicated character mechanic wise

Basic level v skill question: how do you use it to parry a hit then spd? I keep getting the flex punch hit instead of anything else.

Don’t hold forward while doing it.

Perfect thanks Gunmad. Your posts have been super helpful.

Long time FG (Yie Ar Kung Fu was my favorite game at the little arcade where kids would have birthday parties, Kangaroo and Vector Star Wars close seconds) player here, but never had any comp when I was young. Took my first baby steps towards leveling up with Alpha 3, and then UMvC3 and SF4.

Zangief On Stick vs Pad - I usually find stick easier, especially if it has an Octo gate. BUT - I was messing around with the game over remote play whilst the lady was watching the Oscars and spd’s are incredibly easy to pull off on the Vita d-pad.

Questions - Lets talk V-Trigger:

  1. Am I buffed in this mode? Attack? Defense? How does it affect my parry (command list says V Skill is different when I am in V Trigger)

  2. You cannot combo the initial activation/attack? But can combo the lariat in if you are using it after having triggered V Trigger? Example, I jump in Splash -> CR MK -> Super Red Lariat. It works if V trigger is already active, but does not combo if I initiate the V Trigger after the mk. Am I right about this or is there something in execution I am not doing properly?

  3. What are my follows after Super red lariat? I know if I get a clean 9 hit off I can do a jumping EX SPD. I know that I can also hit with Headbutt or St. LP. Are there any other moves I can do that hit when they are spinning in the air like that? What if I have no meter? I have had no luck getting an non-EX jumping spd to connect. When I only get the 6 hit off, is headbutt my best option or should I be looking for something else?

Lets talk SPD:

  1. I get beat by regular throws? Thats how it seems at least.

  2. What happens against other command throws? Do some have shorter startups then others? If they connect on the same frame do they throw break, or does something else happen?

  3. Can I not grab 'sims extended appendages anymore? I tried.

  4. What spd range is ex most comparable to, l,m,h?

  5. Is the startup frames the same on all three levels of SPD? Does EX come out faster?

Lets talk neutral jumping fierce:

  1. Why do I love this move so much? Its different than IV but has an interesting hitbox all the same. I don’t know if it does extra dizzy like the one in IV. Does this move beat a lot of stuff? Jumping MK is really interesting too.

Other Stuff:

  1. Whats the best way to punish stuff like wake up Dragon Punch? Block then grab em when they land? Block then jumping ex spd?

  2. Super Red Lariat is soooooooooooooooooooo good against a projectile.

  3. Forward + MK is amazing. Closes the distance and lets you SPD or CA. Even if it hits you can tick throw very easily unless you are super close to them when you start the move (then I find myself whiffing the throw while they are still in recovery). Does it combo into ANYTHING? I had a very hard time linking stuff from it.

After a Dragon punch just do a heavy punch. You get a Crush Counter free of charge!


  1. No changes to damage but parry when walking forward is now 100 hits.
  2. the only way you can combo off of the activation is with Heavy attacks, like St HP activate works.
  3. ST HP, 6HP, ST HK, air EX SPD are the only ones i have found. Your options should be Damage:Air EXSPD, no meter not close to stun:Headbutt, close to stun:Full charge HP, Reset St HK.


  1. SPD is five frames and so are regular throws but SPD takes multiple frames for the input. if they hit on the same frame you win but even at the absolute fastest input you are doing it in 6 frames so you lose. Now when someone is tick throwing you dont forget you are at frame disadvantage after a blocked attack typically so reversal SPD is a bad choice.
  2. I believe this works like normal attacks where the highest damage one wins on the same frames but i could be wrong.
  3. EX air SPD for air to air works but i cant get any others.
  4. Mp
  5. no all are 5 frames just different ranges and damage.

Neutral Jump Fierce i dont know as i dont jump often but you have me interested ill have to try it.

Other stuff

  1. CC headbutt,cr mp CA with full bar. CC HpSPD with no bar. CC, HP, Full Vtrigger air exspd when you have full vtrigger.
  2. yes it is.
  3. It is only +3 on hit so on counter hit it will combo into Cr Jab but it will combo into CA on any hit.

Punish wakeup dps by blocking, s.HK cc, walk forward, s.HK while they are in the air, then jab spd/super when they land. Make them pay.

I guess that stuff could have gone in the Q & A thread, sorry about that. Might have been more appropriate. Great answers, especially filldoh, thanks so much.

Your answers led to two more questions I have. I will continue them here as they might be helpful for beginners.

What is it about the crush counter that makes superior to a regular hit? Hard knockdown? Extra damage?

  1. Context above seems to imply that a fully charged HP does extra dizzy?

  2. “Combo into CA” Wait… I can combo into CA??? It doesn’t whiff if they are in recovery or whatever? Was it like that in 4, previous iterations? Why did I think it had to be landed raw?

Let me see if I understand this correctly. After blocking the DP, I do a standing hard kick which will be a counter crush, walk forward and while they are spinning in the air and hit em with another. Then what? After they land, do a wakeup spd or ca? Like from when they are waking up after knockdown? They can punish me for that tho? Or am I misunderstanding? Is there something I have to do to make the S HK a CC or is it that automatically because they are in the DP animation?

it does extra damage, stun, and a bunch of extra hitstun. With gief in particular he can combo a spd after crush counter st.hp or link into stuff if close enough. A fully charged crush counter st.hp can allow you to get a guaranteed dash into heavy spd

and charged st.hp will do extra stun yes ( a fully charged counter hit st.hp or a counter hit foward hp is 240 stun )

You can dash forward and spd 'em while they are descending from the CC before they land?? Thats sick!