Zato-One is the former leader of the Assassin's Guild who traded his vision with the power to control his shadow, namely Eddie. New to Strive, Zato possesses the ability to command Eddie to cancel his moves into each other, allowing the two to launch even more coordinated attacks. Zato's unique controls can make him hard to master, and playing as him can require higher execution and character knowledge than average.
|Lore:||The former leader of the Assassin's Guild, now revived after once experiencing death.
Before his resurrection, he was a calm and thoughtful person. However, after all he went through, he ended up unable to feel an emotional response to anything. He no longer finds significance in anything in his life, be it good or bad, nor can he feel joy or anger.The closest he gets to feeling emotion would be his feelings for Millia.
|Zato-1, classified as a Technical type, is a shadow wielder who can pressure his opponent with simultaneous attacks.|
If Eddie is unsummoned before the gauge runs out, the gauge will turn white, and quickly recover (55 HP recovered each frame until full). Eddie can be summoned again at any time during this.
If Eddie or Zato is hit by an attack, or the shadow gauge is depleted fully, the gauge will turn red and will recover at a slower rate (15 HP recovered every frame until full, 200f duration). During this time, Zato cannot summon Eddie until the gauge is full again. Avoiding this as much as possible is important to preserving Eddie.
For more information on how to practice controlling Eddie, refer to novriltataki's How to Zato video below. (While the video uses Xrd for the example, most tips stated in the video are applicable to Zato in Strive.)
Tied for Zato's fastest button with 2P. Most commonly used in staggerLeaving gaps between attacks in block pressure. Can be used to condition and bait the opponent to try and attack at a bad time or do something risky to stop it. pressure or to mash out of gaps in the opponent's pressure. Pretty good range for a jab, however, the reward on it is abysmal, as the best you can get usually is repeated 5P/2Ps without meter.
Gatling Options: 5P, 2P, 6P, 6K, 6H
- Is jump cancelable.
Standing low. Can combo into 2D after for a knockdown, allowing you to summon Eddie safely and start your okizemeApplying offense while the opponent is getting up from being knocked down.. Most commonly seen in solo pressure to catch fuzzy jump, or high/low mixups incorporating Eddie as a low option.
Gatling Options: 6P, 6K, 6H, 5D, 2D
- Is jump cancelable
Combo/blockstring filler. When blocked, you can go into c.S > 5H > 22H or 236P to create a frametrap, the latter of which is a great way to summon Eddie safely in pressure.
c.S can also be used in Leap loop combos (c.S > 2H > -S-...), but generally, doing 2S > 2H > -S- nets more damage. Use c.S in leap loops when you cannot pick up with 2S, or intend to end the loop, by doing ... > c.S > 2S > 2H > ender.
Gatling Options: 6P, 6K, f.S, 2S, 5H, 2H, 6H, 5D, 2D
Long range 2 hit poke. Not used often due to having slightly more recovery when whiffed compared to 2S, but can be useful to beat attacks like Potemkin's Hammer Fall/Slide Head, or moves that high profileMoves that shift your hurtbox upwards to avoid lower hitting attacks. Also referred to as "low crush". 2S.
Gatling Options: 5H, 2H
Combo/blockstring filler. On hit, can combo into 22H for a soft knockdown. On block, you can cancel it into either 22H or 236P for a frametrap, the latter being a great way to summon Eddie in pressure safely. On counterhit, the slowdown allows both hits of 236P to combo, making possible a 5H CH 236P 236P 236S confirm that sends the opponent to the opposite corner.
Standard dust attack. Uncharged, it is slightly faster than 6K. Cannot be converted off of without Eddie in play or RC. When you hit a grounded opponent with it charged, you can chase them by inputting 7/8/9, and follow up with a combo afterwards. Use this to open up crouching opponents.
Universal anti-air with invuln. Great anti-air for opponents that like to airdash a lot. On normal air hit, you can follow up with 22H for a soft knockdown. On counter air hit, it will cause a hard knockdown, allowing you to cancel into empty summon (214H) and set up your okizeme.
Overhead command normal. This overhead can be good for opening up the opponent however it requires them to be blocking and respecting Zato to get hit. Can be converted with either a roman cancel or Eddie. Be sure to use this once in a while to catch them by surprise.
- Airborne frames 8-33
- Can be canceled with flight on block for a high/low mixup
Command normal where Zato leaps into the air and does an attack. Great way to bait lower hitting attacks or throw attempts, as you can combo after on counter hit. Because you can airdash out of this move, it is a great mixup tool at your disposal. This can be mashed out of so it is best often used in sync with Eddie to ensure the opponent cannot punish you.
Crouching jab. Great range for a jab, and most commonly used in stagger pressure or to mash out of gaps in the opponent's pressure. It has the same issue as 5P in that the reward on hit is abysmal, usually leaving Zato only with the option to string multiple 2P/5Ps.
Gatling Options: 5P, 2P, 6P, 6K, 6H
Low poke where Zato sticks his foot in the ground. Good low poke at closer ranges, and can combo into 2D, granting a hard knockdown to set up okizeme. Also used in high/low mixups with Eddie as a low option.
Gatling Options: 6P, 6K, 6H, 5D, 2D
- Hurtbox extends before the hitbox becomes active
One of your best pokes. Fairly fast, covers good range. Can cancel 2S into 22H, summon Eddie, or do nothing and see how the opponent responds after. Take note that every characater, except Potemkin and Nagoriyuki, can jump out of 2S > 22H (Potemkin can Megafist out), so only cancel into 22H to condition players to jump or when you know they will respect you. 2S does have an extended hurtbox when used, so exercising caution when throwing out this move is important. This also allows it to be fairly easy to punish on whiff.
2S is also a cornerstone in Leap loop combos (-S- > 2S > 2H > ...), making it an essential combo filler piece with Eddie in play.
Gatling Options: 5H, 2H
- Vertically long range anti-air.
- Extends Zato's hurtbox so it can trade or lose to many moves when timed incorrectly.
While it does not have any upper body invul like 6P, 2H is great at catching opponents above Zato, and has ridiculously good reward on counter hit, allowing you to do Leap loops anywhere on the screen, or go into j.D if hit high enough for a solo conversion. On normal hit, can combo into 22H for a soft knockdown, but can also be used as an ender to summon Eddie and go for oki. Also an integral combo filler piece in many of Zato's combos incorporating Eddie. Do note that 2H does extend Zato's hurtbox.
- On counter hit, allows you to combo into That's A Lot (236K).
Low sweep. Connecting this attack while naked allows Zato to bring Eddie into play safely, as well as start okizeme with Eddie afterwards. If you can combo into this attack and Eddie is ready to be summoned, it is best to go into it. Also seen as a low option in Zato's high/low mixups with Eddie.
3 hit air attack. Has good range, and the horizontal hitboxes make it a good move to hit opponents out of the air.
Gatling Options: j.P
This move is primarily used as an air to air as well as a mixup tool. On air hit, can go into j.D > j.66 > j.H > 2S > ender. For mixups, it is used as a high option after 6H (6H > 66 > j.K), or to set up an F-Shiki/low mixup after Eddie Drill (-K- > j.K > j.D/land > 2K > 2D). Can also be used as a jump in, but j.S or j.H generally do that better.
Gatling Options: j.D
One of Zato's best air normals. Hits all around Zato, making it good in air to air and air to ground situations. Overall a solid jump in.
Gatling Options: j.H
While the hitbox does not hit all around Zato like j.S, it is an amazing jump in for air to ground situations just because of how large it is. A staple jump in attack.
Zato quickly moves horizontally while doing a biting attack. This move can be a really good movement tool, acting as an alternate airdash, allowing Zato to move around in the air more freely, whilst also putting out an attack. It also has the tendency to beat out a lot of other air attacks, so it is a great way to check people in the air from farther away.
Hitting aerial opponents with this move will launch them upwards, allowing Zato to combo off it if he's close to the ground - especially on Counterhit.
When combined with PRC, it can carry Zato across the screen very fast, which is very useful in matchups where he can have trouble approaching as easily, such as Axl.
Hard knockdown. Great oppurtunity to summon Eddie afterwards. If you can't summon, you can go for a safejump with j.66 > j.S.
Grants hard knockdown, but how advantageous you are depends on how low you did the airthrow. Good anti air option.
Dash in any direction (Air only)
By inputting the same direction quickly twice while airborne or pressing the dash button while holding a direction, Zato will fly in the specified direction (e.g. 66 to fly forwards). If you dash directly up, Zato will fly in place. While flight is activated, Zato can be move around freely in 8 different directions and ends either when an attack is inputted during flight, Zato lands, or Zato has been flying for too long. Zato can cancel 6H and all air normals into flight on hit or block as long as he still has an air action available.
Integral move to playing Zato. Zato summons Eddie, which can then use all of his following attacks by releasing P, K, S or H, or by doing 236P/K/S/H, the latter input allowing you to cancel Eddie attacks into other attacks (e.g. 236P > 236S), but leaves Zato vulnerable fot a short period of time.
Use this summon after a knockdown to set up your okizeme or if you want to summon Eddie in neutral without doing an attack immediately, so you can decide how to respond to what the opponent is doing after.
To unsummon Eddie, do 214H while Eddie is already summoned, allowing you to preserve Eddie's longevity and summon him again much faster.
]P[ when summoned or 236P
- ]P[ only works when Eddie is already summoned, whereas 236P can be done regardless if Eddie is summoned or not
- Uses 500 HP of Eddie gauge for each hit (upwards to 1000 HP)
- Recovery values in [ ] refer to Zato's animation for 236P.
- 4 frame gap between the first and second attack on hit, 7f gap on block
Primary Eddie attack to control ground space. Can be used to push your offense on grounded opponents from neutral. Note that there's a gap between the two hits. Keep this in mind because smart opponents can mash during this and kill Eddie if you do not condition them to respect it. You can cover this gap by attacking in-between the two hits. You can take advantage of the gap on block by grabbing them inbetween the first and second hit, with either Normal Throw or 623S.
You can use 236P after a blocked 5H to create a frametrap that summons in Eddie. If you have 50% tension, you can do 66PRC after the 236P to make both hits of Pierce a true blockstring, and set up a mixup afterwards.
"That's a lot"
]K[ when summoned or 236K
- ]K[ only works when Eddie is already summoned, whereas 236K can be done regardless if Eddie is summoned or not
- Uses 375 HP of Eddie gauge for each hit (upwards to 1500 HP)
Eddie creates 4 drills that go across the screen horizontally, and pushes the opponent away from Eddie's position. While not great in neutral, it is a cornerstone of Zato's okizeme with Eddie, shining when used after a knockdown to set up ambiguous high/low mixups.
]S[ when summoned or 236S
- ]S[ only works when Eddie is already summoned, whereas 236S can be done regardless if Eddie is summoned or not
- Uses 1500 HP of Eddie gauge
- Recovery values in [ ] refer to Zato's animation for 236S.
Arguably Eddie's best attack. Anti air attack that drags the opponent back to the ground when blocked, allowing you to continue your offense. In addition, it is a staple in Zato's higher damage combos, as Zato can loop into this move so long as he has enough Eddie gauge available. Example of the loop would be (corner) c.S > 2H > -S- > ...
]H[ when summoned or 236H
- ]H[ only works when Eddie is already summoned, whereas 236H can be done regardless if Eddie is summoned or not
- Uses 20 HP of Eddie gauge each frame the move is active. Each hit from the attack phase uses 520HP (upwards to 1560 HP)
- Recovery values in [ ] refer to Zato's animation for 236H.
- Can guardpoint anything except throws (whiffs), Overdrives, burst, or RRC
Use this attack to bait predictable approaches or attempts from the opponent to gain offense, and punish afterwards, usually with 214S or 623S.
It is also a great anti air option when you know the opponent will approach from the air, but aren't exactly sure what angle they will approach from. Use 214S or 2H after Oppose blocks the jump in to punish with a damaging Leap Loop.
Good move for controlling neutral. This move has a ton of active frames, which make it easy to meaty people on wakeup and can be very advantageous if it meaties on later active frames. Combining this with Dash Input RC allows Zato to cover the ground, while also being able to react to what the opponent is doing, such as anti airing an opponent who jumped over the drill, making this a good use of meter.
Break The Law
- Values in  refer to when 214[K] is fully held down
Zato goes into the ground, and is invincible to all attacks the as long as he is doing this move. Zato stays in the ground as long as K is held down. However, the longer Zato does this move, the more recovery it will have when he comes back up, and Zato will be forced out of the move after a certain period of time. This move synergizes well with Eddie out, as you can control him while Zato is safe from any danger.
Can also be used to bait bursts during a combo, provided you have the right read.
- Leaves you +7
A command grab with more damage and range than Zatos regular throw, albeit with mediocre okizeme afterwards. When it connects, Eddie is unsummoned and a long attack animation plays, giving the Eddie Gauge plenty of time to refill. With a full Eddie Gauge and 50% of tension, you can RRC it and follow up with a damaging combo afterwards.
Mix this in your pressure to punish opponents respecting you too much.
- Reflects projectiles starting Frame 3
Can reflect certain, non-overdrive projectiles, such as Sol's Gunflame or Ky's Stun Edge. In addition, if Eddie is summoned and nearby when using this move, Drunkard Shade will yeet Eddie forward, making it a great way to quickly reposition Eddie, or sandwich the opponent between Zato and Eddie, allowing for enhanced pressure.
|Anji||Shitsu (Both butterfly and bird)|
|Faust||Love (Bag only)|
Chemical Love (Nullifies it)
|Ky Kiske||Stun Edge (Ground, Air)
Charged Stun Edge
j.D (Nullifies it)
|Leo Whitefang||Gravierte Wurde (S and H versions)|
|Millia Rage||Tandem Top (S and H version)|
|Nagoriyuki||Blood Rage activation (Nullifies it)|
|Ramlethal Valentine||Banjoneto Followup Explosion|
- Costs 50% tension
Damage super. Has no invincibility, meaning Zato cannot use this to get the opponent off of him. However, it is great for securing knockdowns before a wallbreak when you don't need to refill the Eddie Gauge with 632146S, or closing out rounds. Can also serve as a situational anti air due to how high the attack hits.
632146S (air OK)
- Costs 50% tension
Utility super. When used, the sword will track the opponent's location and attack. Eddie gauge will be refilled and will summon him where the sword lands. If Eddie was already summoned when the attack was inputted, the attack will start from Eddie's position. Use this super to continue your offense with Eddie or to end a combo with a full shadow gauge.
|Combos||Very barebones at the moment, has some essentials to help get players started, but definitely can use more refinement.||4/10|
|Strategy||Nearly complete, just need matchup tips against every character.||18/20|
|Frame Data||Nearly complete, need full framedata for 236K/]K[ and supers, need attack level and risc gain values||45/50|
|To edit frame data, edit values in GGST/Zato-1/Data.|
Click [★] for character's full frame data