P4U2R/Ken Amada/Strategy

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File:P4U2.5 Ken Amada Icon.png Ken Amada


General Tactics

Ken's primary strategy is to maintain mid range and try to do 1 of 3 things:

1. Keep your opponent in mid range.

Use simple strings like 5B/2B > 236A/B, use follow ups if you want to push them to the corner. You can use 214C/D when follow up hits to lock down. 236D is a safe way to end your strings as well.

2. Force your opponent to block Koromaru.

Make your opponent block by using the dog in neutral, stay at mid range to capitalize on this.

3. Punish your opponents approaches.

Try to make your opponent eager and hit them for pushing buttons. 5B/2B/j.A/j.B are all good at stopping an advancing opponent. 5C is good at stuffing approaches. 2C is good for sniping up backers.

Neutral

Once you catch your opponent you have several routes you can take, you can use dog to pressure your opponent and push them away thus forcing corner or returning to neutral or you can go for a mix up. Using 5C/2C to make B normals and 236A safe is very important, you can also use the fact that going into 236 series leaving a rollable gap as a means to punish them with Koromaru and land a combo. Koromaru is really good at locking your opponent down and gives you the freedom to do what you want.

Things you must look out for when using pressure is for certain character DP's and reversals.

DP's to look out for: Adachi, Mitsuru, Rise, Naoto, Kanji, and Elizabeth.

These DP's hit further than they appear or counter Ken himself in some way.

Pressure

Close range

Close range usually involves 5A range or closer, here you can freely use the dog to keep it going, you can fish for a grab or you use 214C/D to allow you to get a high/low. 236C/D is really useful for pushing to the corner or going for air dash j.B stuff. you can also fish for cross ups with 5C/2C.

Mid range

5B/sweep range. Usually you want to use 5B > 236A/B here and choose if you want to push them back or enter close range and go for the above mentioned options.

Far range

Use dog to force your opponent to block and use 236 series to pull them in.

Other tactics

With 236AB being +7 and dog ex moves being really fast and hitting for more hits you can go for more creative ways of opening your opponent up.

You can also leave gaps in your pressure or make yourself seem unsafe and punish with Koromaru. Since the god can force your opponent to block many hits you can hang back and use diarama to maintain your health.

Dealing with Reversals/Punishes

Kens 236A is negative on block and the follow up leaves a gap that loses to supers, instead of losing to the supers keep a eye on your opponents bar and don't move your dog, if they go for something you can RC and block safely. Doing this also protects the dog from getting hit in some cases.

Very important to learn the safe jump timing with j.A/j.B with Ken, this gets around a lot of reversals. Also knowing how to 1A4 to block reversals works as well.

Counter Reversals

All of these reversal excluding Minazuki counter super can be triggered and avoided by using Koromaru to take the hit for you, in other words if you use the dog as a meaty and keep yourself in a position to punish you can consistently punish people for going for this answer.

Minazuki counter super is mind gamey. It triggers and punishes you if the dog hits, no avoiding it once it catches you or the dog. But if you know the player intends on going for it. (Usually they get a bit passive and are carefully watching your dog so he can catch it) You can do more...interesting things, you can actually play around your frame disadvantage around this, again be careful with your dog use once he gets awakening.

Keep in mind this is just a general way of dealing with reversals.

Offense

Ken offense is unique compared to most the cast. He has a limited pool of gatlings but to make up for it he has a dog that can cover all kinds of gaps and can make him positive on block from most things. Because of this he can make things that is death on block into something safe. He can also pressure for a long time because of it as well.

The Basics

Use dog to make grounded approaches safe and also to make mix up as tight as possible. Using 5C/2C to force your opponent to block at mid range or tag them out of jump, knowing when you can attack to apply pressure. Usually during the block stun of 5C/2C.

Watch your opponents meter 25/50 meter can give your opponent a chance to escape!

Certain characters can get out or create opportunities with 25 meter. Sho EX 214 move is an example. Can hit you and allow him to jump cancel even on whiff. be ready for things like that. Don't commit to air dash mix up since its a free chance for your opponent to guard cancel roll.

Never over extend yourself, Ken gets a lot of chances to pressure/mix up once he gets started.

This should be obvious but you do not need to go in too hard with Ken, if your opponent doesn't want to give you the mix up you can always bait them or just hang back pressure them, try to force them to try to escape and punish accordingly.

Stopping approaches with Koromaru

5C/2C/214C and 214D are really good at stopping approach from far range and jumps. Use them to make your opponent think twice about rushing in.

Stopping approaches with Ken

5B is excellent at stopping approaches, its like mitsuru 5A as in it hits really far and it leads to pain. 2B has a small cross up hitbox that helps against some jump ins not the most reliable anti-air but it stops cross ups.

Dog position manipulation

Not much to say but be smart with the dog when he is coming back to you.

Okizeme

236AA

The oki you get when you end a combo in 236A into A follow up: On normal conditions you get a hard knockdown, you can cover your opponent with 5C/214C/D/236D Depending on where the dog is.

5C is used make your opponent block and lets get a high low or a cross up using 5C to hit your opponent.

214C is good if you can time it to hit your opponent when they tech, it allows you to get a high/low on your opponent covered by the dog spinning.

214D is when the dog is behind you, it functions similar to how 214C works.

236D is interesting its used to cover late/no tech option. If they do get hit you can use j.2B to knock them back down or have your opponent air tech trying to get away from you, both situations are usually favorable since the dog stays close to your opponent.

236A/B into B follow up

B follow up has less recovery than A follow up

This is the key knockdown in P4U2 1.1.

B follow up lets you time 214C easier but it loses to late/no tech so you can use 5C or 236C/D to cover them for not teching.

Same solutions as the A follow up section.

j.2B knockdown

This knockdown has its uses since there is a few things that isn't too well known about it.

You can do some naughty things with this mid screen but its the corner when it truly shines. You can get away with meaty 2C/5C's.

236C/D is the primary meaty you want to use here.

If you don't use your second jump when you hit j.2B midscreen you can do a cross up with 5C by double jumping. If you do j.2B at the lowest possible height while 236D is hitting you can actually do a air dash while your opponent techs, really tight though.

236A air hit

This oki works by using the pull 236A has on it, this allows you to get a funny mix ups on your opponent when they tech, you use 2C on their wake up and then:

You jump over them turning 2C into a cross up. Jump and go for a empty jump into low or bait. Jump and go for a j.B > j.2B. Yes a double overhead. Jump and then air dash j.A. You can roll through your opponent for a cross up.

These are all good if you time the 2C proper to hit meaty. if they try to roll when its properly timed they get punished for trying it and then comes the pick ups.

214C can be used here as well.

236B air hit

This is pretty useful since you can side switch and do fake mix ups with it.

236B pulls in and you in put 236B usually the dog is running towards you from a 236D. You in put 236D here and you neutral jump and the dog will actually push them under you. you can j.B or empty jump low here and its safe. If you want to get greedy you can air turn air dash for that but that can lose to mash.

236B pull in and you IAD, your opponent techs and their standing hitbox prevents you from crossing up even though it looks like it shouldn't and you get a j.B or a empty landing mix up.

236B pull in and you jump forward and 2C this is actually the weakest mix up because it rely on your opponent teching on time. You jump over to have the dog 2C cross up if they block do j.B or land 2A/2B If the 2C hits use 2B to pick it up and get a combo.

Defense

Ken defense is weak but you are not completely helpless. It's weak because he doesn't have easy button to disrespect with on defense. His DP is slow. Good thing about supers are that they are insanely fast but super can be beaten out during flash with invincible moves. But if your opponent leaves a gap and the dog is behind them you can use the dog as a safe way to hit them or make them back off a bit. This makes Ken unique since you can input dog when you are not in block stun. This means doing defensive stuff like fuzzy jump can use the dog thus making OS stronger.

Tips and Tricks

Ken's Throws and Input Reversal

Ken's throw has unique properties due to the fact that it forces Ken and his opponent to swap sides. His normal throws (5/6CD and j.CD) leave the opponent behind Ken, moving Ken to the opposite side and reversing his inputs for subsequent moves. However, for the duration of the throw's animation, the system considers Ken to be on the player one side, despite the visual switch occurring much earlier. Therefore, when performing a normal throw, any commands used during the throw should be inputted though Ken has not yet switched sides with the opponent. When performing a back throw (4CD or j.4CD), the opponent will land in front of Ken, but despite the animation and the lack of a side-swap, the system automatically reverses inputs for the duration of the throw. While Ken's backthrow functions as his forward throw, the system treats his backthrow like any other character's and assumes it causes a change in player position. In short:

  • Normal throw: inputs are not reversed until the throw has ended, despite the side-swap occurring early in the animation. As soon as the throw ends, the game registers the side-swap and inputs are subsequently adjusted.
  • Backthrow: inputs are reversed for the duration of the throw, then revert after the throw animation has completed.

Understanding when the system determines your position is crucial for using Ken's throws in combos and pressure. During corner pressure, Ken's normal throw will toss the opponent out of the corner, making his backthrow preferable for maintaining offense. However, because the game assigns player position at the start of the throw and again after its animation, being able to recognize the start and end of the input reversal is required for some throw combos and when using Ken's throw in high-pressure situations, throwing an opponent out of pressure, etc. While Ken can always combo off his throw with a One More! Cancel, he can turn his throw into a combo without meter by using his throw in conjunction with Koromaru's attacks or by buffering the next move in the combo. While many throw combos are unaffected by the system's decisions regarding player position, internalizing the input change allows you to capitalize off unexpected throw opportunities, such as a counter-hit throw on an opponent using Evasive Action.

Use training mode to learn the specific timing of input changes and to memorize the visual cues to avoid mishaps!

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File:P4U2.5 Ken Amada Icon.png Ken Amada