Ah, I did notice the game seems to run for a few frames during the switch, wasn’t entirely sure how.
Do all 6 frames happen before the freeze frame? I’m guessing yes because it seems you can always block after immediately, though I haven’t tested that scientifically at all.
My general point still stands, though. Usually when you change forms, you are in a kinda bad position, but if you’re doing stomp strike with mage, you’ll be close range and in a body well equipped to handle stuff (plus a freeze frame, like you said). For that reason I actually think Mage is a very versatile body, I think it is not super easy for people to deal with stomp strike pressure, so he can fight up close really well. You can try to block it out but the chip is a serious issue (does 2 health points of chip per hit, and H stomp strike is 3 hits, H + pip stomp strike is 6 hits… the H version will do 6 points of chip which is almost 2%, a few of these and you’re not too happy). It’s also a tight block string after heavy buttons so you’re kinda stuck if you’re in range of st.HP or st.HK which has lots of range.