DBFZ/Janemba

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Overview

Overview

In a game that's infamous for how many characters can skip neutral, Janemba stands out for not only being a strong zoner, but an excellent neutral-focused midscreen powerhouse that can make your Superdash spamming opponent respect you. Janemba's greatest strength is his capacity for controlling the field, thanks to his fantastic ranged tools. His ki blasts are excellent tracking projectiles that can even be used in combos for a relaunch, and his very fast teleports make him incredibly difficult to hold down. His wide sword normals also have the distinct characteristic of being able to destroy enemy projectiles, which makes Janemba an effective counter-zoner. He also has two of the best Assists in the entire game in his A and B assists, with the first being a powerful combo extension tool, and the second being useful for all sorts of pressure options and blockstrings. In that sense, Janemba is a very effective Mid pick for just about every team, but don't be fooled- his solo damage and pressure options are also very strong, and he can burn meter for some very damaging combos, making him an effective and versatile Anchor as well. Though this dark purple dictator is good at quite a lot of things, his simplicity makes him somewhat predictable and his large hurtbox makes him combo food for most of the cast. Janemba is good at creating an advantage for his team and then pressing said advantage as hard as possible, making him a great support pick if you need someone to push your team to greater heights.
Playstyle
Janemba is an hybrid midrange and zoning character who controls massive portions of the screen with his attacks and anti-meta tools.
Pros Cons
  • Space Control: Tracking ki blasts and Sword SpecialsDBFZ Janemba DemonicBlade.pngGuard:
    All
    Startup:
    15
    Recovery:
    24
    Advantage:
    -5
    that destroy projectiles give Janemba screen control and a way around Ki Blast zoning. Dimensional HoleDBFZ Janemba DimensionalHole.pngGuard:
    -
    Startup:
    1
    Recovery:
    13
    Advantage:
    -
    forces opponents to stop using projectiles and assists during neutral and on successful counterDBFZ Janemba DimensionalHole2.pngGuard:
    All
    Startup:
    -
    Recovery:
    -
    Advantage:
    +30
    enables easy pressure or even a full combo.
  • Scary Pressure: Janemba has strong pressure, enforced by a plethora of safe normals and swift command grab in Mystical ArmDBFZ Janemba MysticalArm.pngGuard:
    Throw
    Startup:
    20
    Recovery:
    26
    Advantage:
    -
    .
  • Phantom ShiftDBFZ Janemba PhantomShift.pngGuard:
    -
    Startup:
    invul frame 4
    Recovery:
    20
    Advantage:
    -
    : Janemba's main mix-up tool and pseudo-reversal, being fast and invincible starting on frame 4. Chaining two of them together lets Janemba get a screen length away while being totally safe.
  • Support Value: Janemba's assist selection is great: Assist ADBFZ Janemba Assist5S.pngGuard:
    All
    Startup:
    36, 46, 56, 66
    Recovery:
    -
    Advantage:
    +50
    is a tracking Ki Blast that gives big combo extensions, Assist BDBFZ Janemba DemonicBlade.pngGuard:
    -
    Startup:
    25
    Recovery:
    -
    Advantage:
    +29
    is excellent for blockstrings and space control, and Assist CDBFZ Janemba 5H.pngGuard:
    All
    Startup:
    35[20]
    Recovery:
    -
    Advantage:
    +55
    is a tracking assist that's +55 on block.
  • Slow Moves: The majority of Janemba's normals and special moves are on the slower side and can leave him vulnerable against faster-attacking moves.

Normal Moves

5L

Version Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
5L 400 All 6 3 12 -3
5LL 700 All 9 2 22 -8
5LLL 600×2 All U3+ 36 6 21 -11
5L
  • Janemba moves forward during the jab.
  • Can be spaced to be safer.

Small HitboxA general term showing where an attack can hit the opponent and where the character is vulnerable to attack. that struggles to hit opponents Super DashA attack that causes the player character to fly to the opponents current position, being very susceptible to an antiair. inputted by pressing H+S.ing or above him. Despite this, 5L is a good tool for his PressureTo attack the opponent continuously and leave little room for counter attacks. game when combined with his 2LDBFZ Janemba 2L.pngGuard:
All
Startup:
6
Recovery:
12
Advantage:
0
and 214L.


5LL
  • Ground bounces on hit.

Large hitbox, useful to beat MashTo press button(s) rapidly without little thought.ing and backdash. Extraordinary for combos and blockstrings. Will catch people attempting to jump 214L or out of pressure.


5LLL
  • Teleports forward and can cross over the opponent. The Hitbox is behind Janemba.
  • Switches sides on hit.

The online special. Janemba can also input 214S to fake the CrossupAttacking your opponent after changing which horizontal side you are on, typically by jumping over them., but can be reacted to by watching the StartupThe time before an attack is active including the first active frame. For example, an attack with 10F startup means the attack will do nothing for 9 frames, then hit the opponent on the 10th frame. animation as Janemba will leer forward with this. Very slow, has a huge gap making it mashable, and unsafe on block. Use scarcely.

5M

Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
700 All 13 4 17 -5
  • Good range, moves Janemba forward.
  • Always spaces perfectly for 2L to connect on block.
  • Hits from round start.

Janemba's only safe medium. Makes up a large portion of his Stagger PressureThe use of intentionally delaying gatlings or cancels in order to create frame traps with the intent of catching your opponent mashing or jumping. Loses to reversals.. Decent starter in terms of damage, but 2MDBFZ Janemba 2M.pngGuard:
Low
Startup:
11
Recovery:
24
Advantage:
-11
is still your go-to.

5H

Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
850 / 1000 All U1 15 3 27 -12
  • Deflects Ki blasts like other sword normals.
  • Any normal > 5H is NOT a true Block StringA series of multiple attacks that work well against a blocking opponent. Generally, a block string will be composed of several plus on block or cancelable attacks performed in quick sequence. When blocked, these will slowly push your character out of range and prevent the opponent from counter-attacking, which makes them a very good default, low-risk option when trying to apply offense..

Useful as a Frame TrapAn offensive technique where the attacker leaves a small opening in their offense, goading the defender into performing an attack. This opening is designed such that the attacker can easily counter the defender's attack with his own. but not much else than that. In blockstrings you're most likely going to skip it because of the gap.

5S / 6S / 3S / 1S

(Hold OK)

Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
300×4 All 18-27 42 -21
  • 5S, 2S, j.S are similar and has some limited tracking.
  • Hold or mash S to shoot all 4 Ki blasts.
  • Can controls where he shoots with 5 1 3 6
  • Without inputs, the order is 5316.
  • 5 and 6 ground bounces airborne opponent.
  • Last Ki blast ground bounces even grounded opponent if it's 5 or 6, pops up grounded opponent if it's 1 or 3.

Janemba's Ki Blast is a tool with far more nuance than most other character's Ki Blasts. It's slow, but you can force the opponent to respect it by cancelling into 236L/M/HDBFZ Janemba DemonicBlade.pngGuard:
All
Startup:
15
Recovery:
24
Advantage:
-5
. Doing this with the first Ki Blast can force an opponent back to the ground and be cancelled into 214L/M/H instead once the opponent is conditioned to sit still. It's also an incredible combo tool, as steering the Ki Blasts to force a ground bounce gives way to all kinds of relaunch combos.

2L

Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
400 All 6 3 12 0
  • Not a Low AttackAn attack that the opponent must block low., but is instead 0 on block.
  • Really good for staggers due to its reach.

Overall amazing button and a core tool for Janemba's stagger pressure.

2M

Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
700 Low 11 3 24 -11
  • Janemba's only low.

Too slow to allow for a High-LowA mixup where the opponent must choose between blocking high and low. 50/50A mix-up where the opponent has a choice between two options, such as strike-throw or high-low. A "true 50/50" is used to describe a mix-up in which the defender must guess and commit to one option, without any way to determine which option the opponent will choose and react accordingly., so is rather used as his best starter off unsafe moves.

2H

Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
850 / 1000 All U1+ 14 3 31 -17 f4 Head
  • Anti-AirA grounded attack that hits the opponent out of the air. Deflects Ki blasts.
  • Has the largest vertical range of any 2H in the game, but also has one of the worst horizontal ranges of any 2H as well.
  • Bad in combos because of the low horizontal range.

Your anti-air and nothing more. Useful in that it enables a j.HDBFZ Janemba jH.pngGuard:
High
Startup:
15
Recovery:
-
Advantage:
-
sliding knockdown, which in turn can enable j.214HDBFZ Janemba HellGate.pngGuard:
All
Startup:
53
Recovery:
52
Advantage:
-
okizeme, but that is mostly relegated to the corner.

2S

(Hold OK)

Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
300×4 All 22-32 52 -21+landing
  • Slightly floats off the ground.
  • Cancellable from 5S.
  • Unlike 5S and j.SDBFZ Janemba jS.pngGuard:
    All
    Startup:
    18-27
    Recovery:
    -
    Advantage:
    -
    , Janemba can't control the first Ki blast's direction.
  • No input order is 1536.

Similar in use to 5S, but it leaves you airborne instead of being grounded. Acts as an extension in a way, and adds an easy conversion to j.2MDBFZ Janemba j2M.pngGuard:
High
Startup:
25-33
Recovery:
-
Advantage:
-
for a meterless sliding knockdown.

6M

Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
850 High 24 6 10 0
  • Sword normal OverheadAn attack that the opponent must block high..
  • Deflects Ki blasts.
  • Uses the gigantic hitbox of his j.H. Max range 5M > 6M can beat mashing against characters with stubbier normals.

j.L

Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
400 High 7 3
  • Good range for a j.L.
  • Slightly slower than other j.L's

j.M

Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
700 High 11 4
  • Your most common jump-in.

j.M is forced to take the spotlight because of j.H's awkwardness. All things accounted for, it still has strong Frame AdvantageThe difference in time an attacker and a defender can begin moving again after blocking an attack. if blocked, as well as being a good CrossupAttacking your opponent after changing which horizontal side you are on, typically by jumping over them..

j.H

Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
850 / 1000 High D1+ [D3+] 15 3
  • Deflects Ki blasts.
  • Huge hitbox
  • Halts momentum and ground bounces grounded opponent.
  • Use j.L or j.M for IADAn air dash performed from a standing position as quickly and as low to the ground as possible from a jump. Done by inputting 956 754, and depending on the game, using a dash macro right after a jump. overhead instead.

An interesting normal in Janemba's Kit, comparable to Hit's j.HDBFZ Hit jH.pngGuard:
High
Startup:
13
Recovery:
-
Advantage:
-
. Even with its awkward animation it sometimes see niche use mainly after a launch with 2H as Janemba can cancel the smash knockdown into j.214H for OkizemeFrom Japanese "起き攻め". Attacking an opponent about to wake up after they were knocked down, usually with meaty attacks or mix-ups. setups.

j.S

(Hold OK)

Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
300×4 All 18-27
  • 5S but in the air.
  • Freezes momentum.

Sees use as a combo tool into j.2M

j.2H

Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
850 All U1 11 4 f4 Head
  • Wallbounces the opponent.
  • Deflects Ki blasts.
  • Moves Janemba slightly backwards.
  • Head Invul beginning on frame 4.

This button is Janemba's go-to for combos midscreen, as well as j.214H extentions in the corner. Also used to react to Superdash because of its Head Invulnerability.

Special Moves

Shadow Kick

j.2M

Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
900 High D1 25-33
  • Tracking overhead that causes sliding knockdown on Smash hit.
  • Janemba teleports to the ground on hit. This makes frame advantage the same regardless of where you use it.
  • Always leaves Janemba +32 on hit.

This is your go-to combo ender. When you're close, it allows a superjump IAD j.M Safe JumpA very well-timed jump attack on a character who is rising from a knockdown. Your goal is to attack extremely close to when you land so that, if the character performs an invincible reversal attack, you will land and be able to block. The opponent is then forced to block your jumping attack, since reversaling doesn't work, which will give you some nice pressure and hopefully an opening. for easy continued pressure.

Demonic Blade

236L/M/H (Air OK)

Version Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
236L 1100 All 15 4 24 -5
236M 1200 All U1+ 19 4 24 -5
236H 1300 All U1+ 16 4 24 -5
j.236L 1100 All 15 4 26 -2 if TK
j.236M 1200 All U1+ 19 -2 if tk
j.236H 1300 All U1+ 15 4 26 -2 if tk
  • Ridiculous range, deflects Ki blasts.

236L
  • Reaches about half screen.
  • Safe, gapless blockstring ender.

Faster AND safer on block than a beam, but isn't fullscreen and has less active frames.


236M
  • Wall bounces.
  • Ground version takes a step forward before attacking.
  • Reaches fullscreen unlike the Light version.
  • Can be used in blockstrings over 236L to add a frame trap.

236H
  • Bigger wall bounce, can be comboed off of midscreen.
  • Reaches fullscreen like the Medium version.

Mystical Arm

214L/M/H

Version Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
214L 1200 Throw D2 20 4 26
214M 1250 Throw U1+ → D2 26 4 26
214H 1300 Throw U1+ → D2 24 4 26
  • 214L always causes sliding knockdown.
  • Will whiff when immediately cancelling from anything other than Light normals, requiring you to delay the input a slightly to Tick ThrowA throw done after attacks, very soon after if not exactly when throw invulnerability expires on the opponent. A Tick Throw take advantage of that the opponent naturally expect a Frame Trap coming, making it very hard to react to or escape from. after other buttons.
  • Max range is a backdash away at 23 frame start-up.

A borderline unreactable command grab and one of the best in the game, arguably almost as good as Z Broly's. Will perfect tick throw from 5L and 2L. This gives Janemba a powerful strike/throw mixup. You should condition with this grab so that your opponent will be inclined to mash, leading into a massive punish if you hit them.

Don't be dissuaded by the slide knockdown, as you can just go into Level 3DBFZ Janemba NeedleLightShower.pngGuard:
All
Startup:
12+3
Recovery:
-
Advantage:
-33
. A Janemba with meter is terrifying to block because of this, you take the frametrap and heavy damage along with it or the grab into oki that will most likely kill. It's a very bad situation for your opponent all around.


  • 214M wall bounces on Smash hit, SKD on non-Smash.
  • In the corner, can be followed up with 2M.
  • Max range is 2/3rds of the screen away at 29 frame start-up.

While initially less threatening than 214L, this grab makes up for it with it's unexpected range which is around that of his 236L, an aspect that many will not be aware of when first facing Janemba. This combined with Janemba's massive sword specials, far-reaching medium buttons and tracking ki-blasts that can bring jumping opponents to the ground make his mid-range game scary to block.

In the corner this grab can easily be converted off of with either 2M or 5L, but outside the corner will require either an assist or a tag-out.


  • 214H does a big wall bounces on Smash hit, SKD on non-Smash.
  • Can be followed up midscreen.
  • Max range is 2/3rds of the screen away at 27 frame start-up.

Gives high reward and 24 frames isn't too awful to work with, but the light grab is still the better choice if you just want pure mix, with this also being given away more due to the EX flash.

Otherwise, it gives a best of both worlds between the light and medium grab by having the medium's range with slightly better startup and much easier combo conversions, giving an almost braindead easy conversion with the enemy flying right to Janemba's feet. Outside the corner a small microdash needs to be buffered if you want to go for routes starting with 5L.

Hell Gate

j.214L/M/H

Version Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
j.214L 350×3 All 53 (172) 9 52
j.214M 350×3 All 53 (232) 9 52
j.214H 350×6 All 44? (374) 18 44?
  • Shoots an electric ball with no active hitbox that slowly travels along the ground, bouncing off walls.
  • Only one ball can be on screen at a time. Ball detonates itself after a while.
  • Hold up during startup to make the ball floats higher up.
  • While the orb is out, pressing the respective button used to summon the orb (L for j.214L for example) will cause the orb to detonate instead of the button.
  • Heavy version can combo from smash j.2H by holding up and mashing the heavy attack button, allowing for a delayed 5LL into full combo.
  • j.214H is an important neutral tool and can be called safely thanks to its low recovery. j.214M sees some use in corner combos while j.214L rarely sees any use.

Absolutely crucial to Janemba's gameplan. Despite how it looks, Hell Gate is NOT classified as a ki-blast projectile. And so, it cannot be reflected on block or Superdashed through. This allows for solo teleport OkizemeFrom Japanese "起き攻め". Attacking an opponent about to wake up after they were knocked down, usually with meaty attacks or mix-ups. in the corner with a SKD (excluding j.2M), on top of its uses for neutral and combos as already mentioned above.

Phantom Shift

236S (Air & Hold OK) or 214S (Air & Hold OK)

Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
invul frame 4 invul for 13 20 4-16 All
  • Teleports a set distance. InvulnerableA state where a character cannot be hit. A common component of reversal moves. from frame 4, making it a very strong escape option.
  • After inputting either versions, holding any of the 8 directions will still make him teleport to that direction anyway. Default is 6 for 236S and 4 for 214S.
  • Grounded 2 stays in place, 1 and 3 teleports slightly closer than 4 and 6. All 5 off these versions keep Janemba grounded.
  • Air versions can only be performed once until landing, can also teleport back to the ground.
  • Both ground and air versions don't consume air options, they also keep super jump's momentum control.
  • Can be used in combos to link smash j.2H to j.L, letting Janemba confirm solo off of a raw superdash anywhere on screen.

Janemba's do-it-all character defining move. His grab is a better straightforward Mix-upTo perform a maneuver that forces a defending opponent to choose between two or more options. If the opponent chooses incorrectly, then he is hit by an attack. There are many different types of mix-ups such as crossup(left/right), high/low, and strike/throw., but teleport offers one thing that the grab doesn't: fakeouts, scarier okizeme setups, and NeutralWhen neither player is in an advantageous position in terms of stage position. control. Use them in tandem to make your opponent crack under pressure, and use it with 5S, 236L/M/H and 22S to make your opponent not want to move in neutral.

Dimensional Hole

22S (Air OK)

Version Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
22S Catch 1 28 13 1-28 Guard Point
22S Attack 600 All +30 Until attack finishes
j.22S Catch 4 28 13 1-28 Guard Point
j.22S Attack 600 All +30 Until attack finishes
  • Guard PointAn attack that automatically blocks certain attacks. Examples of this include Bang's Drive attacks, Baiken's Suzuran (63214K), and Zappa's Too Bad (214S). against non-Super projectiles and assists.
  • On successful parry, he becomes fully invulnerable until after RecoveryThe recovery of an attack refers to the amount of time an attacker must wait before he may perform another action, even blocking. whilst also shooting a projectile that appears behind his opponent.

Designed to completely shut down projectiles and assist calls. Upon activation, Janemba cannot be punished and the counter projectile will give him free pressure on block or combo on hit.

If you see projectiles and assists coming, there's actually no reason not to parry. Teabag away.

Z Assists

Assist A

Phantom Assault

Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
250, 3×175 All 36, 46, 56, 66 +50
  • 5S but shoots from 5 four times.
  • Fourth Ki Blasts ground bounces.
  • Fullscreen tracking, enable extensions even at high up.
  • Like many ki blast-based assists, can be reflected/superdashed during. Interestingly, the first Ki Blast is not reflectable.

A very strong assist and easily the best combo assist in the game. Basically a faster SSJ Vegeta A that trades the defensive usage for full screen tracking.

Fullscreen confirms off of projectiles, air DR enders and high damage combo extensions allow characters to get big boosts to damage, meter gain or both. While it shines in combos, this assist is very strong in neutral as well. Using it while your opponent is in the air forces them to hold the assist or superdash through, giving you either an easy way in or a free punish with 2H. Ultimately, Janemba A does a lot of things that few other assists can do and it does them very well.

This assist is kind of tricky to get used to and may seem weak at first, but its uses in combos and neutral more than make up for the lack of true BlockstunWhen a character successfully blocks an attack while standing or crouching, the defender is forced into a stun animation for a set period of time where they are incapable of acting. This period of time is called blockstun..

Assist B

Demonic Blade

Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
800 25 2,4 +29
  • Reflects Ki Blasts while active.

This assist, while not being as strong in combos as Assist A, is also a very potent assist. It's half-screen range allows for it to be used almost as a beam, and it's blockstun solidifies this role. Best blockstring assist outside C, making it your go-to for characters that need blockstun.

Assist C

Hellblade Flurry

Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
450,315,280 All 35[20] 5,3 +55
  • Teleports to the opponent's position on the ground.
  • 3rd hit comes out only on hit.

55-frame C Assist. Useful if you absolutely need a lockdown assist, and pretty decent because Janemba doesn't really need that kind of assist himself. Startup is lessened in combos allowing for easy extensions.

Super Moves

Rakshasa's Claw

236L+M (Air OK) or j.236H+S

Version Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
236L+M 2415 All UDV 9+5 -18
j.236L+M 2415 All UDV 9+4
  • Minimum damage: 815
  • Causes sliding knockdown.
  • Teleports back to the ground on hit.
  • Cinematic Super, cutting it early by DHC does slightly less damage without any benefit.
  • Is Janemba's DHC Super.
  • Always leaves you +4 on hit, no matter the height you started at before the super.

Good damage for a super. Because of it's cinematic nature, it will always result in a sliding knockdown. The entire time the opponent is falling and sliding is open for DHC's, making it really easy to extend into other supers. In terms of a normal combo ender, it does not really allow continued pressure.

Savage Skewer

236H+S

Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
1995 All UDV 9+5 -17
  • Minimum damage: 799
  • Immediately puts the opponent in the corner, with Janemba fullscreen.
  • Also a cinematic Super, cutting it early omits the corner carry and has reduced damage.
  • Unscaled damage is the year that his movie came out.

Fullscreen super that can hit where 236L+M can not, but does less damage overall. This is mainly used to DHC into another characters Level 3 for corner Okizeme.

Needle Light Shower

214L+M (Air OK) or 214H+S (Air OK)

Version Damage Guard Smash Startup Active Recovery On-Block Invuln
214L+M 220×19, 360 All UDV 12+3 -33
j.214L+M 220×19, 360 All UDV 12+3

Fullscreen beam super for meter dumping and acts as a frame 1 reversal. On hit, Janemba is +43 and can get a meaty in midscreen. In the corner with the right spacing, 236S[3] 2L vs 236S[6] 2L if buffered perfectly is a meaty left/right 50/50 that's also safe against reversals with startup of 11F or slower. If not spaced out, 236S[2] 2L vs 236S[6] 2L will also work, but isn't as visually ambiguous.

  • Air version will always teleport Janemba back to the ground afterward

Colors

1Seasonal colors that can be unlocked at different times of the year.

2Unobtainable.

External References

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