P4U2R/Mechanics

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This page assumes that you are already familiar with Numpad Notation.

Guard

Guarding, commonly known as Blocking, is the fundamental form of defense in fighting games.

Most special and supers moves also inflict a small percentage of their damage through guard. This is known as chip damage.

When a player guards, they are put into a state known as blockstun during which their ability to act is mostly taken away. Guard Cancel Attack, Guard Cancel Evasive Action, and Defenseive Burst can still be used during blockstun.

Guarding an attack also pushes the defender back. This phenomenon is called pushback. The amount of pushback varies by attack, though generally the higher the Attack Level, the more pushback. Some attacks even pull in the defender instead of pushing them back (known as vaccum)! This corner effect does not apply to projectiles, but does apply to strikes done by Personas and partner characters.

Grounded Guard

Hold 4 or 1 While Grounded

An exclamation mark will appear when you block incorrectly.
Basic ground guarding is the most common defensive option. Also known as blocking.

There are 2 types of ground guard: standing guard and crouching guard. Standing guard will block high and mid attacks, crouching guard will block mid and low attacks.

If you guard incorrectly you will get hit and a "!" will appear over your character. Remember, you cannot block against throws, and some attacks are unblockable.

Airborne Guard

Hold Any Backwards Direction While Airborne

There is no high-low blocking in the air, making it a common place for defenders to go to avoid blocking ground-based high/low/throw mixup. That's not to say that being airborne is a fail-safe defensive posture; getting airborne is a risk since blocking is diabled during prejump and the first 5 airborne frames. Plus you need to deal with air throws, crossups, and air unblockable attacks. There is also 2 frames more blockstun when blocking in the air.

Landing while in air blockstun will replace any remaining air blockstun with ground blockstun!

For example, after air blocking an attack that inflicts 20F air blockstun, you land after 15F. That means after landing, you will be in ground blockstun for 5F.


Unblockable Attacks

Labrys' next attack is unblockable.

Some attacks are completely unblockable - the only way to avoid getting hit is to move out of the way! An icon will appear during the unblockable attack's startup.

High+Low Unblockable Attacks

There is also another class of unblockable attacks that exist by hitting a grounded opponent with high+low attacks at the same time. Because they can not block both high+low at once, they are guaranteed to get hit. There is no icon to show when this unblockable happens, though there is an exclamation mark showing that they blocked "incorrectly".

Air Unblockable Attacks

Some ground attacks cannot be blocked in the air. Notice the yellow "!"

The majority of attacks can be safely blocked in the air, but some attacks (such as most 2Bs) cannot be air guarded. These attacks are air unblockable (AUB) and a yellow exclamation mark will appear in these situations.

2Bs are only air unblockable if the defender is not already in blockstun. If the defender is already in air blockstun (plus 17 frames after) then they will be able to block AUB attacks. This means that AUBs should be the first attack in a string in order to be useful as an anti-air.

There are several attacks that are always air unblockable, and do not have the blockstun restriction. For example,  Yukari's Feather Bomb has this property and she can take advantage of this with her Magarula super by catching an opponent airborne with Magarula, then throw and detonate a Feather Bomb while they are stuck in the air blocking the super! Similarly,  Teddie's Parachute Bomb item,  Mitsuru's Bufudyne super, and  Sho's Moon Smasher super are all attacks with this "always AUB" property.

Cross-up Protection

Blocking can be difficult since the opponent can do tricks to swap sides. However, there is slight leniency to give players time to switch blocking direction: the first 3 frames as the opponent swap sides (not necessarily in blockstun), then they will still block attacks from the opposite direction even if they are still holding forward! All other rules for blocking still apply, such as needing to correctly block high/low.

Guard Bonus

P4U2R GuardBonus.png

When a character is in blockstun for over 6 seconds with almost no gaps in between (at most 6 frame? gaps are allowed), they will automatically begin Instant Blocking all attacks and the HUD will display a "Guard Bonus" message.

Instant Block

Begin Guard Right Before An Attack Connects (8 Frame Window)

P4Arena InstantBlock.png

Instant Blocking is a more powerful, advanced form of blocking. On successful Instant Block, your character will flash white. If you mistime an instant block you are unable to instant block again for [unknown number of] frames, this prevents mashing IB.

Instant Blocking has the benefit of
  • Recover from blockstun 2F faster (4F for air IB);
  • Gain extra 2 static SP from blocking;
  • Reduces the amount of pushback, leaving you closer to the opponent.

A successful IB will give you more room to either escape the pressure, or to abare out the situation.

Fast mult-hitting attack (such as Yuikiko's 5C), if IB'd, will instant block all the hits within the 8F window. In these instances you will only gain the additional Heat once for each time you input block.

Instant blocking does not reduce chip damage, nor does it allow you to make "illegal" guards: you still must guard high/low correctly, and air IB will not guard air unblockable attacks.

Grounded Movement

Walking

[4] or [6] while on the ground

Good ol' reliable

Walking is the most basic form of movement by holding 4 or 6.

Characters will continue to walk so long as their player holds down the directional input. 1 and 3 are not valid walk inputs. Each character has a unique walk speed for both forwards and backwards.

One of the main advantages to walking is that it provides fine grain control over one's positioning. By contrast, jumps lock the player into a fixed arc, and runs maintain momentum for a time after the player releases their input.

Because walks can be canceled immediately, they allow the user to block freely after forwards movement, which running on its own does not allow. Another advantage is that walks are usually silent. Without an associated audio queue, walks can be hard to react to.

Running

6[6] while on the ground

Running is conceptually similar to walking, but faster and with some negative trade-offs.
Akin to walking, each character has their own running speed and acceleration.

Although running requires two consecutive 6 inputs, the player can shift their forwards input into a 3 input so long as they maintain a constant forwards input. The player character will continue to run so long as a valid run input is held. If the player releases the run input and does not cancel the run into another action, they will perform a run skid animation.
Runs will sometimes maintain momentum when canceled into another action, and other times can have their momentum negated. This varies on a case-by-base basis.

Run Skid

Runs end in a vulnerable skid animation

The run skid animation is a state characters enter when their run is ended without canceling into another action. Each character has their own run skid speed.
This state is cancelable into most actions, but has a major restriction. During the run skid animation, the player cannot guard.

Backdash

44 while on the ground

Some invulnerability on startup, but can't be used immediately after ground recovery

Backdashes are movement options which provide a quick burst of backwards movement with some invulnerability.

Each character's backdash has its own frame data and physics. The invulnerability for backdashes begins on the first frame of their animation. This means that backdashes can be used to avoid attacks with good timing.

Backdashes travel a fixed distance at a set speed, are not cancelable, and are completely vulnerable for some period in the latter portion of their animation. For these reasons, they are not always preferable to backwards walking.


  • All backdashes are fully invincible from 1-6F, excluding Aigis in Orgia mode.
    • Aigis's Orgia backdash is fully invincible from 1-7F and is airborne afterwards.
  • Backdashes cannot be performed for the first 4 frames after a ground recovery, with the exception of Aigis in Orgia Mode.
  • When blocking, there must be a gap in order to transition from blocking to backdashing:
    • When standblocking, there must be a 1 frame gap between attacks.
    • When crouchblocking, there must be at least a 2 frame gap between attacks.


Evasive Action

A+C while on the ground

P4U2R EvasiveAction.png

Evasive Action (aka rolling) is a dodge forward that can be used to move through the opponent, evade strikes and projectiles, but not throws. Evasive Action's strike invincibility does not begin on the first frame, so they are a poor option on wake-up against .

On offense, rolling allows attackers to create cross-ups by having their persona attack from one side while the attacker moves through the defender. The defender must block in relation to the attacker's position and not the persona's, Evasive Action offers interesting cross-up options.


  • All evasive actions last 33F
  • About invincibility:
    • Frames 1-24 are Projectile invulnerable
    • Frames 3-24 are Strike invulnerable
    • Counter Hit state starts from 3F



Aerial Movement

Jumping

Any Upward Direction while on the ground

Jumping is the most basic way to put one's player character into the air.
Players can jump while on the ground, or while in the air. When a character jumps, they are locked into a fixed arc which is determined by the direction of the jump input combined with any momentum they have at the time of the jump. Each character has their own jump physics. These determine the speed, height, and duration of their jumps. Before the character becomes airborne, there is a short Prejump Animation with some limitations, explained in its respective section. After a player jumps, they take on the airborne property, which affects what moves they can use, as well as how they receive incoming hit effects. During the first airborne frame, characters can only guard and not attack. This is only a factor when calculating the fastest input for Instant Air Specials.
Characters can jump two times before returning to the ground under normal circumstances.

High Jump

Any Downward Direction > Any Upward Direction while on the ground

High Jumping (aka super jump) travels higher vertically than standard jumping.

It can be done by going from neutral 5, then tapping any downward direction (123), then tapping any upward direction (789). Pressing 789 will change which direction you high jump, just like normal jumping. During a High Jump, characters will automatically turn to face the opponent if you jump over them.

It is always best to mix up the two types of jumps to keep your opponent on their toes depending on the situation.

Prejump

Jumps and High Jumps are not instantaneous - before going airborne, characters will enter a standing state called prejump for 3F. During prejump they can not guard, but are invincible to throws.

It is actually possible to cancel prejump into Specials and Supers, though for most characters is not used very often. The reason for this is that attacks that involve an Up input, such as Mitsuru's Bufula ([2]8C) can be used without going through hoops to hide the jump input (such as whiffing moves beforehand). It also allows players to be slightly sloppy with their inputs and still get specials (ex 2369A instead of 236A).

Air Dash

j.44 or j.66

P4U2R AirDash.png

Air Dashes are the near universal burst movement option while airborne. Characters can air dash one time before returning to the ground unless they have double jumped. When a character air dashes, they travel at a speed specific to them for a time period specific to them. Each character's air dash has their own startup time. The player character is not actionable for a period of time after the air dash begins. Air Backdashes are fully invincible from 1~5F.

To air dash as soon as possible from a grounded state, players use a technique known as Instant Air Dash.

Air Options

Air Options conceptually represent the amount of times a character can jump or dash while in the air without returning to the ground. All characters have 1 air option and can only regain their air option by touching the ground.

Landing Recovery

Landing from the air has recovery. This recovery comes in 2 kinds: Standard Landing Recovery and Special Landing Recovery.

Another quirk about landing is that the frame before actually landing is considered grounded. Meaning during this frame, getting hit will result in ground hitstun and ground throws can hit.

Standard Landing Recovery

Whenever the player lands from being in the air, they experience landing recovery.

  • During the first 5 frames of landing the following actions are disabled: forward/backward walk, all jumps, and backdash
  • All other actions are available immediately on landing - notably attacking, guarding, and run

Runs and attacks can be buffered before landing thanks to Advanced Input. Performing an allowed action will enable all actions, so it is possible to land, run for 1F, then jump (easier said than done, of course)!

Special Landing Recovery

Some airborne moves, such as Yu's air Big GambleP4Arena Yu BD.pngGuardAllStartup4RecoveryUntil L+14Advantage-, will apply unactionable landing recovery which overrides the standard landing recovery. This recovery does not have a unique animation, and the length of time the character is unactionable depends on the move used.

Some moves that apply this special landing recovery may have their animation end and be able to recover while still airborne, or simply cancelled into another action. The special landing recovery will still apply when the character lands, unless they are hit or they override it with another move that also applies special landing recovery or has its own unique landing animation.

A landing animation is different from special landing recovery since it is still considered part of the same move. This means the landing animation could still retain things like cancel options or counter-hit recovery from an earlier part of the move.

Air Turn

Direction + A+C when Airborne

P4U2R AirTurn.png

Air Turn to manually change which direction a character faces mid-air! This can be used to turn to face opponents who run under you to the other side, to hit the opponent as you jump over them, as well as to perform forward air dashes away from the opponent (which not only travel a longer distance than air backdashes, but also prevent you from entering Negative Penalty).

When inputting specials, you must input them in relation to your character's direction.
  • For example, if Yu is facing away from his opponent, you must input j.236A to perform Raging Lion, not j.214A.


Hop

2A+C on the ground

Low and Throw Invincible on Frame 1! Available even when Shocked!

Hops have Foot attribute and Throw attribute invincibility on startup, so they're useful for jumping over the opponent's low attacks and ground throws. However, you can not block at all during a Hop, are in counter-hit state while airborne, and any attack performed by cancelling into a hop can be blocked both high and low.

Hops can be canceled into from many normals, making them useful offensively to reset pressure strings and as a combo tool. Cancelling into a hop from a normal attack is considered to be a special cancel.

Defensively, hops can be used to beat opponents mashing throws and low attacks. And just like Evasive Actions, hops can performed even when shocked!


  • Total duration 46F (40F until all actions except walking)
  • 1-3F: prejump, cannot cancel into specials
  • 4F: airborne
  • 4~12F: no action possible
  • 13~34F: can attack, can not guard nor double jump/air dash
  • 35~40F: landing recovery
  • 41~46F: can do any action except walk
  • Invincibility:
    • 1~3F: Throw Invincible
    • 1~12F: Foot Invincible
  • In counter hit state from airborne until landing


Ground Recovery and Knockdown

Ground Recovery

A/B/C/D when knocked to the ground

Can be delayed.

Ground Recovery (also known as Ground Ukemi) is available immediately on falling to the ground. Most players should immediately Ground Recovery given the opportunity, and only delay when taking a calculated risk to escape a specific okizeme situation.

P4U2 Knockdown Timeline.png


Upon falling to the ground:

  • 1~11F: can Recover
  • 12~30F: Recovery locked out
  • 31~49F: Recovery available
  • 50~65F: Quick Rise animation. Can not guard, is in crouching state, and is Throw invulnerable
  • Recovery is normally 33F and fully invincible
  • Recovery during the initial 11F window will shorten the duration and invulnerability proportionally to how long you waited to Recover.
    • This is done so that Recovery during the initial 11F will have consistent timing to return to neutral, regardless of how early / late into the window you Recover.
  • Getting hit during the first 30F will continue the combo (HUD will show "Invalid" combo)
  • Getting hit after the first 30F will start a new combo
  • Getting hit before Quick Rise animation will be airbone state



Disabling Ground Recovery

The blue bar under damage will show how long the Hard Knockdown lasts

Certain attacks like Yu's air throw inflict a hard knockdown, which prevents Ground Recovery and force them to a knockdown state for a set amount of time (varies by move). Hard Knockdowns are often used to extend combos, or set up unique okizeme situations.


Air Recovery

Any Direction + A/B/C/D After Leaving Untechable State

Hold a button and a direction to recover as soon as possible, or delay your recovery to juke the opponent!

Air Recovery (also known as Air Ukemi) is useful for getting out of the opponent's combo and regain control of your character as soon as possible! Hold Left/Right/Neutral to Recover in that direction.

Usually, defenders want to recover immediately when possible, but attackers can take advantage of this behavior by setting up a mixup that defenders will be forced to block when they recover. A common counter to this tactic is to delay recovering in order to throw off the opponent's mixup timing, but this carries some risk; the attacker can simply hit the defender before they recover and continue the combo!



Normal Attacks

There are four primary normal attack buttons - A, B, C, D. A attacks are primarily weak but fast, while B attacks are stronger but slower.

C and D are normal Persona attacks that are unique to each character. Usually C is a longer range strike, while D is a unique attack for each character.

Normal attacks can cancel into one another, generally following the order A > B > C > D. However, this is not a steadfast rule. Consult the P Combo section of each character's frame data for exact details.

Certain normals serve the same purpose for almost every character. For example, nearly every character's 2B attack is an anti-air attack that is air-unblockable with a period of Head invuln.

All Out Attack

5A/+B on the ground

Bonk!

All Out Attacks (AOA) are an overhead attack that automatically guards against enemy attacks (but not throws and supers). This is useful to stop an opponent's mashing as well as a mix-up option. All Out Attacks have significant start-up and recovery, so if the defender correctly blocks it, prepare to be punished (or you could One More! Cancel...).

  • After hitting a standing/crouching opponent, press and hold A or B to perform an All Out Rush. The All Out Rush does more hits (max 16), after which you press C or D for an ender:
    • Press C to launch the opponent high into the air, allowing attackers to follow up with an air combo. This is usually used mid-screen.
    • Press D to blowback the opponent. If the All Out Rush did all 16 hits, the blowback wallbounces in the corner. The final attack is special+dash cancelable and is usually used near the corner for high-damage combos.
  • Hitting an airborne opponent will bounce them off the ground, allowing a very brief combo afterwards.
  • The C ender always inflicts Fatal Counter state, while the D ender only does so if the All Out Rush did all 16 hits.


Sweep

2A+B on the ground

Sweeps will knock the opponent to the ground, allowing you time to set up a mixup.

Auto Combo

AAA...

The Auto Combo uses normal attacks that are unique and inaccessible any other way. The number of followup attacks differs from character to character. After these normal followup attacks, pressing A again will cancel the last normal into a Skill attack. Pressing A again after the Skill will super-cancel the Skill into a SP Skill if you have 50 SP available; if you do not have enough SP, then the character will do nothing.

Players can stop using the auto-combo at any time and substitute their own attacks. Every character has different cancel options for each auto-combo attack, but as a general rule, cancel options decrease with each follow-up attack.

Using Yu Narukami's auto-combo as an example:

  1. Normal Attacks: Standing punch (5A), a kick (5AA), and an upward slice with his sword (5AAA).
  2. Special Attack: The sword slice will be special-cancelled into Raging Lion (j.214A) (5AAAA).
  3. Super Attack: If 50 SP is available, he will super-cancel Raging Lion into Ziodyne (236236C).

A few characters will change their Super when in Awakening. Ex: Yu will super-cancel into Cross Slash (214214C) during Awakening.

Hitting the opponent with the Special Attack follow-up attack will give the attacker an additional 10 SP and recover 1/10 of the Burst Gauge. This is important to note, as it potentially allows autocombos to be used mid-combo to build more SP from a combo than you normal. For example, Akihiko and Narukami players frequently fit their autocombos into some of their combo routes whenever possible to build bonus SP and Burst, and in some cases this is actually optimal.

Shadow versions of characters use different auto-combos compared to their normal counterparts, but otherwise function the same.

Throws

Comes in ground and air flavors

Throws are proximity based attacks which the opponent cannot guard against. In order to throw an opponent, a few conditions must be met:

  • The players must be in a similar grounded or airborne state.
    • To throw a grounded opponent, the attacker must also be grounded.
    • To throw an airborne opponent, the attacker must also be airborne.
  • The defender must not have throw invulnerability.
  • The defender must be within the throw's range (see below).

If all of the conditions are met, then the attacker can hit the opponent with a throw.

The horizontal range of throws is measured from the edge of the attacker's collision box. The vertical range is measured from the origin of the attacker's collision box, which is at the bottom-center of the box.

Throw Range
Throws uses collision boxes for an additional range check. See this page for more details on the concept.
Comboing Into Throws
Opponents can be thrown while in Spin hitstun. This lets characters combo into Command Throws. Normal throws can also be comboed into, but they can still be escaped.
Elizabeth commonly uses this property to cancel an All Out Attack into her Command Throw superP4Arena Elizabeth GhastlyWail.pngGuardStartup4+(60 Flash)+4Recovery43Advantage- for massive damage.

Normal Throws

C+D Within close proximity of an opponent (Air OK)

  • To perform an air throw, press throw while airborne.
  • To throw opponent behind you, press 4 while throwing, also available in the air.


Special Move Throws

You aren't teching these.

Some special moves have the throw property.  Kanji's "This'll Hurt!"P4Arena Kanji ThisllHurt.pngGuardThrow (220)Startup5Recovery31Advantage- and  Minazuki's DrainP4U2R Minazuki Drain.pngGuardThrowStartup10Recovery44Advantage- are two examples of such throws.

Special moves like this fall into two categories:

Command Throws

These throws cannot be Throw Escaped (There is no ! mark) and they typically have other unique properties, such as higher damage, more start-up, and additional hit effects. However, there are restrictions in place: just like with normal throws, if you use a command throw while an enemy is in hitstun or blockstun (or 6 frames immediately after either), it will miss. To avoid these, the defender must go airborne to dodge grounded command throws, and simply be out of the way of the hitbox to dodge airborne command throws.

Hit Grabs

Technically not throws but are often mistaken for them, these are blockable strikes that go into a throw animation on hit, such as  Kanji's 5AAA and  Adachi's 236B~XP4AU Adachi YoureAnnoyingB.pngGuardAllStartup8Recovery26Advantage-10. These attacks can hit assist characters, but will not trigger the throw animation.

Throw Invulnerability

Characters cannot always be thrown. Below is a list of situations when a character cannot be thrown:

  • During prejump
  • When in blockstun or hitstun plus 6F after either
    • Plus 8F instead of 6F after Instant Block
  • During Ground Recovery plus 3F after
  • When they have Throw Attribute invulnerability

Priority of Strike vs Throw vs Command Throw

When two strikes hit each other, either a clash or trade occurs, but what happens when throws are added to the mix?

  • Throw vs Strike or Any Throw vs Command Throw: The character with Priority will lose.
  • Normal Throw vs. Normal Throw: The character with Priority will be thrown and immediately break the throw.


Throw Escape

Input Throw While Being Thrown

P4U2R ThrowEscape.png

Players can escape (aka throw break or throw tech) normal throws by inputting throw within 16 frames of being thrown.

  • After a successful escape reject, the attacker is pushed back about half a screen length and the defender remains stationary.
  • Throw escape animation is fully invincible and the character who breaks the throw will be at slight frame advantage (+2) afterward.
  • In the air, the player pushed back will also be pushed up slightly, but start falling sooner
    • Meaning they will hit the ground first if the reject was high up, but not if low to the ground.
    • Both characters will regain their air options, so it is possible to air dash > air throw > throw break > air dash again!
  • The throw escape itself counts as an attack that deals zero damage to the player originally attempting the throw
    • Therefore projectiles, status effects etc. that end if the attacker gets hit will also end if the defender throw escapes.


Furious Action

B+D

Reversal! Notice that some of his health has turned Blue as a result.

Furious Actions vary from character to character, but they are all mostly used for the same purpose: to stop the opponent's offensive momentum.

While Furious Actions do not consume SP, they immediately transform 5% of your max health into Blue Health. Furious Actions can not be One More! Canceled or One More! Burst canceled, but can be Super Canceled.

Furious Actions count as special attacks, so it's possible to cancel most normal attacks into a Furious Action.

Furious Actions are known as "R Actions" (Reversal Action) in Japan, and are often referred to as "DP" (short for Dragon Punch) in the West, and some players use those terms instead of Furious Action.

Cancels

There are many types of cancels. A cancel is the act of interrupting the current action and starting a different one.

While most cancels are available on hit/block, some are available on whiff, some are only available on hit, and a rare few are even only available on block!

P Combo Action
Normal attacks can be canceled into other normal attacks. Each character has different rules as to which normals can cancel into what other actions (some attacks can't be canceled at all!). The general flow is that attacks cancel from A > B > C > D.
Each character's Revolver Action Table shows cancel options avaialbe to them and can be found in the character's Frame Data subpage.
Special Cancel
Most normal attacks can be canceled into specials, Furious Actions, and SP Skills. This is generally used to create combos and blockstrings, but can have other applications as well.
Jump Cancel
Some normal attacks can be canceled into jump and super jump. This is used in combos as well as pressure. Some attacks can only be jump canceled on hit.
Dash Cancel
Some attacks can be canceled into a forward run that goes a preset distance, such as Junpei's 5B. This forward run can not be canceled into other actions.
Some attacks can also be backdash canceled like Yu's 2C
One More! Cancel
See One More! Cancel for more details
Super Cancel
Cancel a Skill or Furious Action into a super in order to extend combos. Super Cancels convert 6.5% of your max health into Blue Health.
Clash
See Clash for more details


One More! Cancel

A+B+C After Attack Touches Opponent and with 50 SP

It's usually more than just one...

One More! Cancel immediately cancel any attack that does not whiff (in other words, any attack that touches the opponent) and bring yourself back into a neutral state. These cancels are very powerful for making new frame traps, new combos, or making attacks safe. Even projectiles can be RCed after they touch the opponent!

There are very few attacks that can not One More! Cancelled, mainly the cinematic parts of attacks and supers.

Guard Cancel Attack

6A+B During Ground Blockstun with 50 SP

Stop hitting me!

Guard Cancel Attacks are one of the few options available to a defender during blockstun. They are invincible attacks that do zero damage, but blow the opponent away, and are useful for escaping an enemy's offensive pressure.

Every character's Guard Cancel Attacks is unique, but the vast majority share many similarities:

  • Invincible startup
  • Does zero damage
  • Combos including a Guard Cancel Attack can not kill the opponent, no matter how much damage is dealt
    • They will always survive with at least 1 HP remaining.
  • SP Cooldown for 180 frames


Guard Cancel Evasive Action

6A+C During Ground Blockstun with 50 SP

I gotta get out of here!

Guard Cancel Evasive Action (aka Guard Cancel Roll) serves the same purpose as the Guard Cancel Attack -- to escape the opponent's offense.

Each character travels a predetermined distance during a Guard Cancel Roll, but Guard Cancel Rolls generally travel further than the character's normal Evasive Action. For characters with weak Guard Cancel Assaults (easily beaten, poor hitbox, especially slow, etc.), Guard Cancel Rolls offer another option to reverse momentum.

Guard Cancel Rolls cannot be One More! Cancelled or One More! Bursted, same as standard Evasive Actions. However, Guard Cancel Rolls are often the only way to escape certain unblockable set-ups that can't be beaten by Guard Cancel Attacks!

Persona Attacks

Some attacks require your Persona in order to be used, such as everyone's C or D attacks (except for  Sho), Bursts,  Yukiko's Agi special,  Narukami's Ziodyne super, and  Kanji's Furious Action. If you or your Persona is hit while the Persona is still visible, then you lose one unit of your Persona Gauge. Persona attacks can be disabled temporarily if you are Muted or in Persona Break.

Attacks that require a persona will have Persona Required shown on the character's movelist.

Persona Attacks Affected By Position
Elizabeth attacking from full screen with 2C

Some Persona attacks start from the current position of the Persona if it is already on screen. This can create interesting attack angles, such as the opponent becoming sandwiched between you and your Persona. There are no rules determing which attacks have this property: some Persona attacks simply do and some do not.

  • Elizabeth is notorious for using this to send her Persona out to attack the opponent from full-screen by using 5C > 2C!
  • Yukiko can send out her Persona behind the opponent with j.D, then bring them closer to her with 5D!

This also applies to supers! If a super begins from the Persona's position and not the character's, then a player can displace their Persona and use a super from full-screen. This is worth keeping in mind: if your Persona is on screen, your super may whiff if it begins from your Persona's position and not yours ... or you could use that displacement to your advantage and punish an opponent from full-screen!

Using Persona When Persona is Hit

If you input an attack that uses your Persona the instant the opponent hits your Persona, your attack will come out immediately after! This applies even if you opponent's attack would cause Persona Break.

Persona reliant characters such as Elizabeth and Yukiko should take advantage of this for one more extra Persona attack or to punish the opponent for hitting their Persona!

Skills

Motion Input + A/B/C/D

Skill attacks typically have special properties compared to normal attacks. Normal Skill attacks come in a few varieties: for example, Yu's 236C/D, with the C version being a slow projectile and the D version a fast attack. Most Skill attacks deal 15% of their base damage as blue damage on block.

Skill Boost

In addition to the two variations mentioned above, most Skill attacks also have a third variation that is performed by pressing two buttons (that is, 236A or B becomes 236A+B). Skill Boost cost 25 SP, are generally an enhanced version of a Skill attack, and create a light blue silhouette behind the character. For example, the Boosted version of Narukami's Zio attack causes Shock.

SP Skills

Motion Input + A/B/C/D with 50 SP

SP Skill attacks (commonly called Super Attacks) consume 50 SP and are an even stronger version of Skill attacks that deal large amounts of damage or have other special properties such as invincibility or, in the case of install supers, unique effects on the character.

Awakened SP Skill

Normal Type characters all have a SP Skills are only available when Awakened that are much stronger or offer unique utility compared to normal supers. Shadow Type characters can use these supers without entering Awakening (since they can't).

SP Skill Boost

Similar to SB Skills, SP Skills can be Boosted and become powered up versions of supers that cost 75 SP. These versions of attacks often have unique properties compared to normal super attacks. Their additional effects range from adding ailments to allowing for a follow-up combo after the super.

Yu's SB Lightening Flash has a brief period of projectile invincibility, while Kanji's SB Ass Whoopin' Tatsumi Style! causes the opponent to wallbounce multiple times, allowing for follow-up combos. Aigis's SB Heavenly Spear deals the same damage as the C version but is one of the fastest reversals in the game, making it harder for the opponent to react to and punish!

Instant Kill

222C+D when conditions are met (Normal Type Characters Only)

This fight is over... as long as the opponent doesn't block.
Your portrait will pulse when Instant Kill is available.

Instant Kill attacks are aptly named: they instantly defeat the opponent! Each character's Instant Kill is unique and has very different properties, but most have significant amounts of startup invincibility. Shadow Labrys instead uses 222+A+B input.

The character portrait will flash white when an Instant Kill is available. There are a few specific conditions that must be met in order to be able to perform an Instant Kill:

  • Match point for you (if you win the round, you win the entire match).
  • Persona available (no Mute or Persona Break).
  • 100 SP.

Instant Kills are not comboable, are almost always blockable attacks (if unblockable, then they are easy to avoid by jumping, hopping, or another form of movement), and significantly disadvantageous if blocked or whiffed. While cinematic spectacles, Instant Kills are seldom practical save for their lengthy invincibility and for punishing very, very slow supers.

Burst

A+C+D with a Full Burst Gauge (Air OK)

A recovering Burst Gauge and a full Burst Gauge.

Bursts are a special type of invincible attack. When Bursts are unavailable, a black "B" will be shown instead. This "B" will slowly fill up over time and as you get hit. Once it's full, you can Burst again. The status of the Burst Gauge carries over between rounds, meaning if you Burst at the end of a round, the Burst Gauge will be empty at the start of the next round, and you must wait until it refills to perform another Burst. Consequently, Bursts are a precious resource and the risks of using one must be considered carefully, or else you may not have it when you need it next round!

An empty Burst Gauge takes 90 seconds to refill if you don't do anything. It is very unlikely that you will have to wait that long, as the following help refill it:

  • Hitting the opponent with your Auto Combo. The Skill attack (typically 5AAAA) refills approximately 1/8th of your Burst Gauge.
  • Getting hit will raise the Burst Gauge slightly. It seems to be proportional to the damage taken/ number of hits received (unconfirmed).


Type Startup Total Time Invul Frame Adv. P1 P2 SMP
Reversal Burst 16 67 1-25 -19 0 100 ??
Max Burst 14 44 1-21 +2 0 100 ??
One More Burst 14 35 1-24 +10 0 -200 50


Bursts have different properties depending on which type of Burst is performed.

Max Burst

Burst when in a Neutral State (Normal Type Characters Only)

Full SP if it hits! Refills Persona Cards too!

If the opponent is hit by a Max Burst, then they will be blown back and the attacker's SP and Persona Gauge will fill to max. Max Burst also refunds 33% of the Burst Gauge.

You can not combo into or from a Max Burst:

  • Attempting to hit an opponent in hitstun with a Max Burst will whiff. You cannot combo into Max Burst.
  • You are invincible to all attacks after getting hit by a Max Burst until you recover. Thus, it might be advantageous to simply lay on the ground until you naturally recover; however, this gives your opponent more time to set up an offensive, so you must weigh the risks/benefits of this tactic.


Defensive Burst

Burst when in Blockstun or Hitstun

C-C-C-Combo Breaker!

Defensive Bursts blows the opponent away on hit and deals no damage. Defensive Bursts are used to interrupt your opponent's combo or pressure and allows you to prevent damage or reset the momentum of a match. Performing a Defensive Burst completely empties the Burst Gauge.

Defensive Bursts can be Disabled

Burst available versus disabled
Burst is temporarily disabled when
  • Getting hit by throws, SP Skills, Defensive Bursts, Instant Kills, as well as some other attacks noted in the frame data.
  • When Persona is disabled due to Persona Break or Mute.
  • Being in hitstun while the opponent is in Shadow Frenzy, including if they activate Shadow Frenzy after hitting you.

The Burst Gauge will be crossed out when Burst is unavailable. Burst will be re-enabled after recovering or when none of the above conditions are true.

One More! Burst

Burst when Attacking (Normal Type Characters Only)

Make deadly combos or cancel your attack to make it safe.

One More! Burst immediately cancels an attack into a combo-focused Burst. Not all attacks can be canceled into a One More! Burst; the basic rule of thumb is that anything that can be One More! Canceled can be One More! Bursted.

One More! Bursts have the following properties
  • Launch the opponent into the air on hit, allowing for an easy combo extension.
  • Partially reverse damage scaling (removes 200 points from the proration tally), meaning further hits in the combo will do more damage than they otherwise would.
  • Creating otherwise impossible combo routes and combos that cannot be Bursted out of by an opponent, allowing for devastating damage.

One More! Bursts completely empty the Burst Gauge.

Awakening

Return to neutral state with 35% or lower health (Normal Type Characters Only)

Only Normal Type characters can use Awakening

Awakening has a visual effect when it occurs: the character will flash orange, their portrait will appear briefly in the background, and their life bar will turn from green to yellow.

While in Awakening, the character will receive the following bonuses:

  • A defensive boost: all damage is reduced to 62.5%. Hitting the opponent with a 1000 damage attack will only inflict 625 damage when the opponent is in Awakening.
  • SP Gauge max becomes 150 instead of 100.
  • Automatically receive 50 SP.
  • Unlock new super attack(s), which vary among characters.

Because a character will not go into Awakening until they are low on life AND return to neutral, a common tactic is to do a high damage combo when the opponent is near Awakening so the opponent will have as little life as possible with Awakening's defense boost. Players can even stop the opponent from going into Awakening by doing a combo that outright kills the opponent before the health condition is met!

Players can also force themselves into Awakening by performing a Super Cancel or Furious Action if it puts their regular life below the Awakening threshold! Elizabeth often forces herself into Awakening with Mind Charge (and regain that life with Diarahan).

Shadow Frenzy

A+C+D with a Full Burst Gauge (Air OK) (Shadow Type Characters Only)

It's combo time! Only for Shadow Type characters and costs Burst and all your SP.

Shadow Frenzy (also sometimes called Shadow Fury, Shadow Berserk, or Shadow Rampage) is a mechanic exclusive to Shadow Type characters that allows for fancy combos. Activating Shadow Frenzy turns the SP Gauge into a purple timer and Shadow Frenzy ends when the time reaches 0. The more SP you have when you start Shadow Frenzy, the longer Shadow Frenzy lasts. During Shadow Frenzy, you can:

  • Cancel any Skill or SB Skill into any Skill, SB Skill, or Furious Action.
    • Each Skill/SB Skill can only be used once per string.
  • All normals are jump-cancelable on hit and block
  • Perform attacks that cost SP at the cost of reducing the amount of time:
    • The timer decreases by 1 point every 12 frames.
    • SB Skills immediately reduces time by 10 points.
    • SP Skills immediately reduces time by 20 points.
    • SB SP Skills immediately reduces time by 30 points.
    • One More Cancels, Guard Cancels, and Guard Cancel Evasive Actions immediately reduces time by 25 points.
  • Activating Shadow Frenzy with 100 SP also refills your Persona Cards, even if Persona Broken.

You can cancel into Shadow Frenzy off of most attacks, similar to using One More! Cancels, and can easily confirm most hits into damaging combos.

When Shadow Frenzy is cancelled into, the start-up and recovery are very fast (speculated 1+(56 Flash)+0). In contrast, if performed in a neutral state, the start-up and recovery are slower (14+(56 Flash)+8), but 25% of the Burst Gauge is refunded immediately. Both versions are fully invincible through the startup animation.

SP Gauge

The SP Gauge normally versus when in Awakening. Only applies to Normal Type characters!

The SP Gauge starts each round at 0 and has a max of 100. SP grows over the course of the match through attacking, defending, and other actions. If a character enters Awakening, then the max becomes 150, and the character automatically gains 50 SP.

The SP gauge resets to 0 and Awakening is removed at the beginning of each round, so it is a good idea to use all available SP each round.

Gaining SP

Gaining SP is pretty simple: do just about anything! Attacking, blocking, and even getting hit all give you SP. You can also completely fill your SP gauge by hitting the opponent with a Max Burst.

Shadow Type characters gain SP significantly faster compared to their normal counterparts, which allows them to either expend their meter more or conserve it for Shadow Frenzy.

The amount of SP gained per hit in a combo scales with the combo. The exact details about this scaling are currently unknown, though attempts at determining the formula have been made.

First Attack
Getting the first hit in a round gives a bonus 10 SP to the attacker in addition to the normal SP gain of the attack. If both players trade for the first attack, then both players get the bonus! If a throw is teched, the player who initiates the throw will receive the meter bonus -- initiating a throw counts as a hit, even if the throw is broken by the opponent. Consequently, it's common to see Shadow-Type characters go for a throw at the start of a round, as even if the throw is teched, they'll receive the meter bonus.

SP Cooldown

After performing attacks that consume SP (such as Skill Boosts, One More! Cancels, Guard Cancel Attacks, and Instant Kills), characters gain SP at a significantly slower rate for a limited amount of time (speculated to be 90% reduction for 180 frames).

Combos that are started during this time will suffer reduced SP gain throughout the entire combo, even if it lasts beyond the cooldown window.

The following actions trigger reduced meter gain: SB skill attacks, SP Skill Attacks, SB SP Skill Attacks, One More! Cancels, One More! Bursts, Instant Kills, Guard Cancel Assaults, and Guard Cancel Evasive Actions -- more simply, any act that uses resources will cause meter cooldown.

Shadow Labrys's Titanomachia super is an exception to this rule, as the super's duration allows her to gain SP normally and then use that meter to inflict even more damage.

Persona Gauge

P4U2R PersonaGauge.png

The card shaped symbols below each character's life gauge represents each Persona's life. A card is lost each time the character OR their persona is hit when the Persona is visible (including by zero damage attacks such as Bursts and escaped throws).

Most characters have 4, but not everyone -- Elizabeth has 6, Akihiko has 2, and Sho has none!

Persona Break

P4U2R PersonaBreak.png

When all cards are lost, then the character enters Persona Break where any actions that require a Persona are disabled. This includes Bursts, C and D attacks, some Specials and Supers.

During Persona Break, the Persona Gauge will slowly refill over time. The more cards a character has, the longer Persona Break will last!

Some characters rely on their Persona to do the vast majority of their attacks, such as Yukiko, while characters like Akihiko do not rely on their Persona nearly as much. Sho can't enter Persona Break, as he does not use a Persona at all!

# Cards Time P. Broken Characters
0 0F Sho
2 540F Akihiko, Ken
3 540F Chie, Kanji, Labrys, Yosuke
4 660F Aigis, Adachi, Junpei, Minazuki, Mitsuru, Naoto, Rise, Yu, Yukari
5 780F Marie, Teddie, Yukiko
6 780F Elizabeth, Shadow Labrys
8 1440F Margaret


Normal and Shadow Type Characters

P4U2R CharacterType.png

When picking a character at the character select screen, players can choose between Normal Type and Shadow Type versions of most characters.

Each version plays slightly differently and has access to unique mechanics:

Normal Type Shadow Type
Awakening Yes No
Life Normal Normal+1000 (Akihiko and Kanji only +500)
Offensive A+C+D Input Max Burst, One More! Burst Shadow Frenzy
Auto Combo New Old
Attack Damage 100% 90%
Awakening SP Skills only when Awakened any time
Instant Kill Yes No
  • Elizabeth, Sho, Minazuki, Adachi, Marie, Margaret, and Shadow Labrys do not have Shadow Types.
  • Labrys does have a Shadow Type, so there is Shadow Type Labrys (with Persona Ariadne), as well as Shadow Labrys (with Persona Asterius), which can be a bit confusing!
  • New characters such as Yukari and Junpei have the same auto-combo between Normal and Shadow Types.

The implications of these changes can drastically change how players approach these characters. For example, Normal characters instantly become more threatening once they reach Awakening: they gain access Awakening Supers as well as 50 SP to use them, as well as Awakening's defensive bonus. Shadow characters must decide between conserving SP to unleash Shadow Frenzy at an opportune time or using their SP for Awakening Supers, Guard Cancel Attacks, etc.

Consider each version carefully when selecting a character -- you can't switch types until the match is over!

Attack Level

Most attacks in the game deal standardized amounts of hitstun, blockstun, etc. based on their Attack Level. Some moves override these standard values, which will be noted in the frame data. In addition to these exceptions, some attacks knock the enemy into the air, wallbounce, crumple, etc.

Lv 1 Lv 2 Lv 3 Lv 4 Lv 5
Blockstun
(Standing/Crouching)
10F 12F 14F 16F 18F
Hitstun
(Standing)
11F 13F 15F 17F 19F
Air Hitstun
(aka Untechable Time)
13F 15F 17F 19F 21F
Hitstop/Blockstop 9F 10F 11F 12F 13F
Counter Hit Hitstun +12F +12F +12F +12F +12F
Counter Hit Air Hitstun
(aka CH Untechable Time)
+12F +12F +20F +20F +20F
  • Hitting a crouching opponent adds 2F of hitstun
  • Instant Block Blockstun (Ground) = Blockstun - 2
  • Instant Block Blockstun (Air) = Air Blockstun - 4


Counter Hit

Characters flash red when they are Counter Hit

A counter hit (CH) occurs when hitting the opponent when they are in Counter Hit state. The opponent will flash red, the HUD will show "Counter" and the announcer will say "Counter". On Counter Hit, the attack does 10% more damage and the opponent suffers more hitstun and air untechable time giving more time to hit confirm, as well as allowing CH specific combos. Additionally some attacks gain new properties on a counter hit like Wallbounce or Hard Knockdown.

All attacks are in CH state during an attack's startup and active time. Most attacks are not in counterhit state during recovery, but there are exceptions:

  • All normal throws
  • Most command throws
  • All Furious Actions
  • All Guard Cancel Attacks and Guard Cancel Evasive Action
  • Evasive Actions
  • All SP Skills
  • All Instant Kills
  • Moves with invulnerable or guard point startups.
  • Some other moves, noted in frame data.


Fatal Counter

Fatal! All hits in the combo now gain more hitstun/untechable time, allowing for fancy combos

Some attacks have the Fatal Counter property. Counter Hitting the opponent with these attacks will cause a Fatal Counter, which gives all subsequent attacks in the combo 2 frames of additional hitstun / untechable state. This leads to combos that cannot normally be done and also offsets the effect of hitstun decay, allowing combos to continue longer than normal.

For example: Yosuke can not usually combo after Mirage Slash, but with a Fatal Counter beforehand, he can combo from Mirage Slash into a 2A!

The announcer will say "fatal" and the words "Fatal Counter" will appear on the HUD when a Fatal Counter happens.

Moves with Fatal Counter property are unique per character, check each character's page for details. Some attacks do a Fatal Counter even on normal hit, and Fear also allows any attack to inflict Fatal Counter!

Fatal Recovery

Fatal 2A!?!

Certain attacks have the Fatal Recovery property. Getting hit by anything during these attacks (whether during start-up, active frames, or recovery) will place you into the Fatal state. For example, all of the grounded versions of Yu's Raging Lion (214A/B) have Fatal Recovery.

This changes the risk of certain attacks, as they can be punished much more heavily by a knowledgeable opponent!

Counter Hit Carry

Most multi-hit attacks have a property where if the first hit is a counter hit, then the remaining hits are also counter hit. This is known as Counter Hit Carry. Thanks to this property, hit confirming multi-hit attacks is easier and opens up additional combo opportunities as well. Moves with Counter Hit Carry also grants the bonus damage that CH normally confers.

Ex: When Yu gets an air CH with j.B, the opponent will be unable to recover for a long time even if the j.B did both hits. This allows Yu to land and run up to the opponent for a combo after a CH j.B.

However, note that the additional hitstop the opponent incurs on counter hit does not carry over to the followup hits with Counter Hit Carry. This means that even with Counter Hit Carry, some combos are still only possible on the first hit of an attack.

Not all multihitting attacks have this property, but the rule of thumb seems to be if the attacks are all quickly one after another, then it will have Counter Hit Carry.

Example: Mitsuru's air throw has Counter Hit Carry while Yukiko's Maragidyne, and Kanji's command throws do not.

Attack Attributes

Each attack in the game has an attribute. There are three main types of attributes that correspond to each type of attack: strike, projectile and throw. These attributes interact with each other to trigger certain effects like invincibility and guard point.

Strike
Strikes are the most common type of attribute and can clash with other strikes (with rare exceptions).
Strike attributes are broken up into four groups: Head, Chest, Body and Foot. Generally, grounded attacks are Body attribute, ground attacks that hit at chest level are Chest attribute, and attacks look like they hit low to the ground (even if they don't actually need to be guarded low) are Foot attribute. Virtually all air attacks are Head attribute.
Projectile
Projectiles are usually attacks that move independent of the attacker and disappear after it uses up all its hits or after a certain amount of time has passed.
Projectiles cannot clash with strikes or throws.
Throw
The Throw attribute is found on all throws, but is not exclusive to them!
Some attacks, such as Kanji's "Bet Ya Can't Take This!" (j.214A) or Akihiko's 2C, do not behave like normal throws as they can comboed into without using Spin state. These moves typically have other restrictions in place, such as unable to hit crouching or standing opponents.
Uncommon Attributes
Strikes with Throw or Projectile Attribute
Strikes with Projectile attribute can clash with projectiles, and are always clash level 1.
Strikes with Throw attribute behave the same as strikes, with the Throw attribute only comes into play when calculating invincibility/guard point.

Attribute Invincibility

A white ring-like effect appears when attribute invincibility is triggered
Some attacks have attribute invincibility, meaning they are invincible to attacks with that attribute.
For example, Yu's 2B has Head attribute invincibility, so it functions very well as an anti-air since most jump attacks have the Head attribute.
Attribute invincibility is only active for a specific time frame, see Frame Data for each move for details.
This is especially important with regard to anti-air attacks: a jump attack that's already active will Counter Hit an opponent for attempting to anti-air too late.
Strike + Projectile Invincibility
Attacks that contain Strike and Projectile attribute will lose to attacks with Projectile or Strike invincibility.
For example, both Teddie's SB Bearscrew (Projectile invul) and Mitsuru's Sweep (Chest invul) will be invulnerable to Margaret's 5A (Chest+Projectile attack)


Guard Point
Akihiko's All Out Attack guard points through Mitsuru's attack
"Guard Point" (also referred to as autoguard, armour or super armour) allows a character to automatically guard against the opponent's attacks while continuing to attack.
Guard Point may also have other restrictions not related to Attributes, such as only able to guard High/Low attacks or only able to guard a certain amount of damage.
These details are listed in the character's Frame Data.
It can be used similar to invincibility albeit with some differences
An attack that hits autoguard is considered "blocked" and the attacker retains all "cancel on block" options, unlike invincibility.
Conversely, if a move still has active frames when normal invincibility ends, the move will hit, however for Guard Point, once a move is blocked by it, that hit is consumed even if it would otherwise remain active after the guard ends (each hit of a multihit attack needs to be blocked by a guard point individually, as normal)
On the whole, invincibility tends to be better.
Esoteric Guard Point Details
Unlike normal guard, Guard Point will:
  • Prevent any chip damage
  • Guardpointing an attack treated the same as blocking it for the purposes of Heat gain for both players.
  • Can change the blockstop duration, for one or both characters.


Hurtbox Invincibility

Hurtbox invincibility is when parts of the character's "body" (i.e., their hurtbox) disappears. This type of invincibility is not from attribute invincibility and is purely a matter of hitbox/hurtbox positioning. Certain actions remove or shrink parts of a character's hurtbox, so they cannot be hit by an attack, even if their body appears to occupy that space. An extreme example is Akihiko's Weave (214C): even though he appears to be standing, he is invincible from the waist-up. This isn't due to being attribute invincible; rather, Akihiko has no hurtbox above his waist, so he cannot be hit there. This allows Weave to avoid things like Naoto's Shots, Mitsuru's 5A, and jumping attacks that hit only above the waist. This phenomenon of dodging under an attack by lowering hurtboxes is commonly known as "low profile". This phenomenon is explained in more detail here.

In P4U2R Dustloop pages, Hurtbox Invincibility does not count as invincibility (unlike in Guilty Gear Pages), hence it is not listed in the invul section of the frame data. Nevertheless, notable cases of low profile moves and their interactions may be noted on character pages and move overviews.

Clash

P4U2R Clash.png
Strike Clash
During a clash, that hit is nullified and each character can cancel the attack into any other attack at no cost, but not standard movement options (such as jump, walk, run), nor guard. Almost all strikes can clash, with very few exceptions.
A clash happens when attacks hit each other in a way that hits each charater's attackbox, but not their hurtbox. See here for a more detailed visual example.
When clashes happen either the players are unable to react to the clash because it is unexpected, or they understand how the attacks interact well enough to intentionally cause the clash to cancel out the opponent's attack, then retaliate with their own!
Projectile Clash
Each projectile has a clash level. When two projectiles of equal level clash, each projectile will lose one hit (i.e. a 3 hit projectile will become a 2 hit projectile, and a 1 hit projectile disappears). Higher level projectiles will reduce one hit of lower level projectiles without losing any hits.
The frame data will list the clash level alongside its attribute. For example, a projectile with clash level 2 will show P2.
Strikes with the Projectile attribute are generally able to clash with projectiles and are Clash Level 1.


Ailments

One of the mechanics of P4U2 that sets it apart from many other games is that characters often inflict ailments (also known as status effects) on each other during the match, similar to the original RPG. Most ailments last for approximately 4 in-game seconds, and can be removed if the character with a status effect hits the opponent with an attack.

If the same status effect is reapplied in short succession, the duration is set to be whichever is longer. Either the time remaining previously or the cap of the new move.

Example: Kanji's D normals and Furious Action (DP) both apply 300 frames of shock. Hitting the opponent with 2D then connecting with DP during the initial shock from 2D will bump the shock timer back up to 300 frames.
If Kanji connects his 5C (100 frames of shock) immediately after 2D, the 5C's shock value is disregarded as 2D's timer is longer.

Characters can be afflicted by up to 3 ailments at the same time. If a 4th ailment is added, then the oldest ailment disappears.

Poison
P4U2R Poison.png

A poisoned character loses a set portion of his/her health over time.
Each time the heartbeat sound effect plays, tje poisoned character lose a small amount of health (0.8% of the character's max health).
Poison ignores Awakening's defensive bonus, making it a great tool when the opponent is low on life because it effectively does "more" damage.

Examples: Yosuke's throws, Teddie's item Mystery Food X, Elizabeth's 2D.

Panic
P4U2R Panic.png

Panic (sometimes called "Confuse") reverses a character's inputs: left becomes right and right becomes left!

Characters can block either direction with either direction, eliminating left-right mix-ups during the status and the risk of the player blocking the wrong direction once the status wears off.

Examples: Yosuke's Tentarafoo, Teddie's item Amagiya Buckets.

Fear
P4U2R Fear.png

When a character is afflicted with Fear, the first hit of any combo automatically becomes a Counter Hit, and causes Fatal Counter. Their ability to break throws will also be removed.

Examples: Elizabeth's 5D, Naoto's Anti-S SP Pistol β

Rage
P4U2R Rage.png

Rage (sometimes called "Berserk") disables blocking for the enraged character, but increases their attack damage by 20%.

Unlike most other status effects, Rage only disappears after a set period of time - it does not go away if you hit your opponent!

Examples: Teddie's Teddie Decoy and item Muscle Drink

Mute
P4U2R Mute.png

Mute (commonly called "Silence") disables Persona related abilities for the afflicted character. This includes things like C and D attacks, Bursts, and some specials and supers.

Examples: Naoto's Anti-S SP Pistol α, Akihiko's 2C

Shock
P4U2R Shock.png

Shock (sometimes called "Paralysis") disables movement (walking, jumping, airdashing, air turning, etc) for the afflicted character. Note that Evasive Action, Hop, Air Turn, Ukemi, and attacks that automatically move the character (such as Chie's Dragon Kick and Mitsuru's 5B) are still usable while paralyzed.

Examples: Kanji's 5D/2D/j.D, Teddie's item Ball Lightning, Elizabeth's Maziodyne SB version.

Charm
P4U2R Charm.png

A charmed character's SP is constantly drained in 4 SP increments and given to the opponent! Note that even if the charmed character's SP is reduced to zero, the opponent will still gain SP.

Examples: Mitsuru's 2C, Yukari's Feather Shot A version.

Freeze
This X means you've shortened the freeze time to its minimum.

Freeze is a unique hitstate - characters are encased in ice, and are in hitstun for about 3 seconds, but can be shortened by rapidly pressing left/right or by holding a button, though there is a minimum amount of freeze time specific to each attack.

Additional Freeze Details
  • If frozen in mid-air and land while frozen, they will then be treated as standing. This allows for air combos that go to freezing, to a standing combo or a high/low mixup.
  • If an attack hits the attacker while the defender is frozen, the defender will recover from the freeze immediately.
  • Freeze immediately ends if the defender is hit by a non-freezing attack.
  • For more details, see the combo system page for more details.

Examples: Mitsuru's 5D, Teddie's item Dry Ice, Elizabeth's Mabufudyne.

Negative Penalty
P4U2R NegativePenalty.png

If a character runs away for too long, then the character enters Negative Penalty. Before going into Negative Penalty, an exclamation point will repeatedly flash above a character's head as a warning; the character will officially be in Negative Penalty State once the words "NEGATIVE" appear on the HUD and red "sad faces" will appear over the character's head.

While in Negative Penalty, the afflicted character takes 50% more damage, meaning a 1000 damage attack will now do 1500 damage to a character in the state. Unlike most other status effects, Negative Penalty does not disappear after hitting the opponent; you must perform multiple offensive actions such as advancing forward, or attacking the opponent.

Additionally, Elizabeth's Debilitate attack also forces the opponent into Negative Penalty!

S Hold System

Hold A and Release

The S Hold System allows players to perform a Special or Super by simply holding the A button! Hold A to charge a meter that appears on screen, then release to perform an attack. Attacks used with the S Hold System may have different properties than if used normally, such as start-up invincibility. Depending on how long you've held down the attack, you will perform either a special or a super!

SHold Charge Time
Level Charge Time Attack
Level 0 1-59F -
Level 1 60-134F Gauge Appears, no attack
Level 2 135-209F Skill
Level 3 210-284F SP Skill
Level 4 285-359F Awakening SP Skill
Level 5 360F Instant Kill
  • Charging to Level 3 and above require that you have enough SP for the specified attack. If you do not have enough SP, then the charge bar will not increase.

This system is primarily aimed at beginners, but nonetheless it holds a few advantages that players can use in the middle of a fight. After Yu Narukami uses Cross Slash, he can easily continue the combo into Lightning Flash afterward by holding A during Cross Slash.

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