General RAAM Gameplay discussion


Idk, it’s not like raam is really hurting for good matchups. He’s not a character that’s weak overall, he just has specific matchups he struggles with. I want shadow kryll rush to be buffed, but that’s more from a standpoint of not wanting him to have a useless move rather than feeling he’s truly lacking as a character. Just clean up some bugs that are holding him back and maybe make a few tweaks and he’s good to go.

Trust me when I say that you do not want a character like raam to have negligible weaknesses.


He’s definitely not weak but of all the characters in the game his bad match ups are some of the most lop sided match ups in the game.

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That’s kind of the nature of the beast. Grapplers almost always have some of the most lopsided MU’s in the game. The people they beat, they really beat - the people they lose to, they lose hard to.


Most modern games have ways to minimize (not to eliminate) this issue to a point where people really want to play with grapplers and win instead of be the zangief of SF2. It’s ok to have one lopsided MU, but to struggle against a big portion, may have difficulty with another part and only have an easy time against one or two in the host like a “traditional grappler” do, will drive people away of the character.


But…that’s not true of Raam. I definitely wouldn’t say he struggles against a big portion of the cast. The problem matchups I’ve noticed are cinder, glacius, gargos, shago, omen to an extent, and while I’ve yet to run into a kan-ra I imagine he’d be a problem too. Mira and sadira are also troublesome. I think he does just fine against or outright beats pretty much everyone else. There are some matchups in particular (hello tusk) that he seriously dominates.

It’s not exactly a secret that he’s easy to counterpick, that’s grappler life. But on the flipside bringing out the big man can help deal with a good chunk of the cast.

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I was just mentioning how a harsh environment could drive people away like in the past, but we may try to translate this in real data. This is how I feel when fighting with RAAM:

Will have big advantages:
Cinder, glacius, gargos, shago, omen, fulgore, sadira, kan-ra and aria. (9 of 26)

Are difficult to deal with: (5 of 26)
Eydol, Riptor, aganos, arbiter, hisako (this one seems to be a pain for the entire cast)

Will be at least be even with RAAM: (10 ou 26)
Thunder, spinal, rash, TJ, maya, orchid, raam, jago, wulf, kim

Easy to deal with: (2 of 26)
Tusk and mira (since she will probably kill herself)

More then half of the cast can put RAAM on hard situations. Of course this may change a bit for other players but i really doubt that this list is unrealistic for most.

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Dang which button lets you quote? it’s not marked on my phone .

I agree with a lot of things said, though I don’t think I’m going to abandon Raam Just yet. I totally get the grapplers plight, but still…something seems to be off about the General. Not all grapplers are equal, but I remember the one time I was playing sf 4, I just wanted to mess around with Zangief and just wasted a few shotos with the spinning larriet. I’m trying to remember if Gief has an air grab? I know Hugo does.

Maybe instead of an air grabn Raam could just reach up and SNATCH an airborn opponent.

Sometimes it sucks. Some days I do well, or break even or even squeak in a victory. Yesterday was not one of those days…though I’m happy to say that even though I lost, I scared a sadira half to death who was relying too heavily on that jump and real move…also made a Cinder quit mid match when I began countering his moves.



I think I’m a little late to the party. While I don’t have a ton of matchup experience with a goodly chunk of the cast, I’ll toss my $.02 on the table anyhow. I will reduce the categorization to Loses/Even/Beats, and eliminate the mirror from my analysis for simplicities sake (reducing the effective cast to 25).

I think you’re pretty close with your “will have big advantages” list. I might add Spinal to it, as teleports in general are obnoxious for a true grappler to put up with. Maybe Rash? In general, anyone that plays efficient keepaway or spends a lot of time in the air will give RAAM trouble. Characters that have to get close to deal damage play themselves into RAAM’s hands, with some caveats. That said, however, the “difficult to deal with” list I almost wholly disagree with.

While, for the time being (even post-nerf v.1) I don’t think Eyedol should be considered (as he’s gonna be a problem for everyone until whatever is going on with him shakes out and settles down) - I think that ultimately they will go even or the match will be in RAAM’s favor. Consider that, aside from Teleport, Mage’s zoning is uniquely susceptible to Run Grab; and Warrior wants to be in your face all day with plus frames, but he isn’t plus enough that RAAM can’t slip a Grab in his pressure gaps. RAAM has little to fear, just much to be annoyed by when facing down Eyedol. The same is true of pretty much any grounded rushdown strategy - it is only playing into RAAM’s favor.

Riptor can be a nuisance with Mortars and Carpet on offense, but again, if she’s in your face, she’s risking an awful lot every time. A character needs to be at least +2 with a frame-perfect 5f (or less) followup to safely bully without getting grabbed (+4>4f to beat EX Grab), and that’s not gonna happen a lot.

Aganos’ size makes the spacing game a bit easier, as he effectively reduces the total possible screen space between you and your opponents hurtbox. He needs resources to effectively zone you, as his long-range buttons are slow enough to be a liability for him here. You will still have to get in on him, but it shouldn’t be as difficult as walking down a fireball character. Grab doesn’t care about armor, Reversal doesn’t care about Roll Hop, and so long as you aren’t getting put through a wall, you should be getting more out of your openings than he is, while simultaneously invalidating some his greatest strengths. I haven’t played this match, so I’m just kinda spitballing here.

Hisako, while not fun, likewise can have her strengths subverted. Every attempted Rekka can be interrupted with Grab, even if she Parry Cancels. In fact, the threat of your Grab should scare her away from attempts at Parry altogether. Her Teleport, unlike others, is telegraphed and slow enough to punish every time if you’re watching for it (as there is only one, as opposed to 3+ elsewhere), which reduce it’s usefulness to Wrath Cancel only. Granted, once you show her that you’re not afraid of her on the ground, she should take to the sky, and that’s a bit different. I’d say she probably has the edge here, but it’ll take a good Hisako to pick up that advantage.

Arbiter, I don’t have any experience against as RAAM, so I’m not sure of some key interactions, specifically how Reversal & Run Grab interact with Grenade. If RAAM doesn’t have to respect the Grenade, I’d say this matchup suddenly becomes favorable for RAAM.

I would agree that Thunder, TJ, and Jago go even with RAAM. All 3 have to be close to get their damage, but there are some fundamental mindgames between players involved. Specifically, Thunder’s grab range let’s him threaten RAAM from beyond RAAM’s effective range, but RAAM doesn’t have to fear Skyfall as much as others, so the adaptation is Thunder’s burden; TJ’s Powerline Cancels can make him exceptionally slippery, but once you’ve got him, you can put him on the ropes; and Jago is the quintessential Ryu>Gief match, but this time we’ve got FADC where he doesn’t, and our projectile armor can help out in “sweet spot” situations (corner spacing w fireballs to bait jumps into uppercuts) so we aren’t spacially dominated the way Gief is/was.

I disagree with Mira’s placement on technicalities. Yes, the fact that she spends life to get in means that once you lay hands, you’ll work considerably less than normal to end the lifebar. However, Mira has incredible aerial mobility, and can run circles around RAAM with it. It is risky, but that doesn’t mean RAAM beats Mira. If anything, Mira destroys RAAM on paper, but the burden is on Mira to play carefully. RAAM will melt bad Mira’s, and not get to play against good ones. Player skill notwithstanding, I’d say Mira beats RAAM.

All these things considered, I’d say that…

RAAM Loses To: 10/25
Cinder, Glacius, Gargos, Shago, Omen, Fulgore, Kan-Ra, Aria, Spinal, Mira

RAAM is Even With: 4/25
Thunder, TJ, Jago, Hisako

RAAM Beats: 11/25
Eyedol, Riptor, Aganos, Arbiter, Maya, Orchid, Wulf, Kim, Tusk, Rash, Sadira

This seems pretty par-for-the-course considering his archetype. Further, I don’t think any of his bad matchups are completely unwinnable. If they improve the height of Reversal, half of those get a bit easier (though not so much to favor RAAM). Moreover, I don’t think these are so bad that it would drive people away from the character, that’s a bit of hyperbole. It will only drive away the people who weren’t going to settle on the true grappler anyway, the matchup assessment above is perfectly normal in terms #grapplerlife. Grapplers aren’t for everyone, there is a lot more burden on the player than with some other archetypes. Having a typical amount of bad matchups doesn’t mean he needs new tools, it means he needs dedication and a bit more forethought, a bit more opponent-knowledge, than some other characters. No biggie.

EX Run Grab just needs to have a reason to use it, other than “I didn’t really want that bar anyway”.

@VENOMOUS1375 SF4 Gief had no air-grab, grounded or mid-air. SF5 (and MvC2) Gief have aerial SPD’s though. In my opinion, as much I love snatching folks out of the air, RAAM’s Reversal is just as good, if not better. Given a choice, I’d keep what we got. Also, his cr.HP is insane.

EDIT: After a bit of consideration, I think Rash ultimately will spend too much time trying to be in RAAM’s face unsafely, and his air mobility, while annoying, often places him at RAAM’s advantage, while other aerial characters don’t have to commit the way Rash does. Ultimately, this should invalidate the perceived advantage of Rash’s aerial options, reducing them to riskier approaches than they otherwise would be - never ever ever underestimate the speed and range of your Grab. Also, RAAM has very little reason to respect Arby’s Grenade.

EDIT2: @STORM179’s post below makes a few very good points. I didn’t even really think about Sadira beyond “jumps a lot” when typing out the above. Fixed to reflect, though there’s an interesting discussion to be had in the traditional-grappler-beats-aerial-fireball-character notion. Granted, it’s his less-than-traditional tools that give the edge, so maybe not such an interesting discussion after all. More of a peculiarity.

EDIT3: Compared to his archetypal peers, RAAM actually has it pretty good. SF4 Hugo, SF5 Gief, GG Potemkin, BB Tager all have a much tougher time against their respective casts.


Please stop saying Raam loses to Sadira. He does not. What’s she going to do, jump into high emergence repeatedly? Raam heavily out damages her once he hits her, bullies her poor wakeup, and has better grounded buttons to boot.


To add to the riptor point, it’s not just the mortar/carpet zoning that’s a problem, but also the fact that riptor has good options on knockdown to avoid raam’s reversals. On the other hand, riptor’s extremely linear and grounded mobility is a significant hindrance when trying to fight raam, and the threat of shadow command grab as a punish cuts off some of her important options.

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Well, once he hits he can out damage anyone, the problem is, how to hit? Sadira’s usally spam jump with daggers until one of them connects and after that you know what happens, also her double jump when used above head will pass trough high emergency leaving you open for a cross at your back.

Maybe you got the tricks to deal with her but for me it became a nightmare. If you have, i would like to watch some videos of RAAM vs Sadira to see if i can catch some tricks.

About the rest of the comments, I’m ok with most of what was said although i cannot fully agree with them. But that’s because of my gameplay experience.

Tks for all the inputs guys.

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Sadira is very annoying to fight, enough so that I find the matchup troublesome. However raam is definitely equipped with the tools to hit her.

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You just block the dagger and emergence her jump in during the gap. Also don’t use high emergence, use heavy emergence, it’s longer start up allows you to catch her double jump because by the time it comes out she’s already fallen into it’s range.

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I don’t think Raam beats Tusk super badly at all. Maybe a slight win for Raam if anything, but feels closer to even for me.

One of the few matchups I’ve actually played a bit of (though my Raam is poor, I had ideas of where Raam’s advantages should have been), and I saw a long set between a better Raam (Coach Steve) and a better Tusk (Dayton) and Tusk did really well in the neutral. On Paul’s KI tiers site, Letalis thinks Raam actually loses to Tusk, while Dayton has Tusk going even.

Focus punishing st.HP is doable if you just want the kryll poison from releasing focus attack… dashing through and punishing with something meaningful (even just grab) is inconsistent, especially when he represents other moves like st.MP, jump back MP, and light skull splitter. Other than that, I think Tusk (with meterless DP) does well enough vs Raam pressure, has damage to contend with Raam, and represents throw well enough vs Raam’s poor throw defense.

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I’ll have to give heavy emergence a try later against Sadira. I think storm179 posted that you can use the kryll shield to mess her up from Bungie jumping in. It certainly worked, but either my timing started to get go off or the other guy delayed the follow up, messing up my timing and started to make a come back.

Whatever the Case, that was the first time that I ever made a Sadira player think Twice about jumping in.

Am I allowed to post video? Not sure IT seeing me In action would help.


Please do.

And listen to Sith - he knows far more about Raam than I do :thumbsup:


Maybe I just haven’t fought a good enough tusk but I haven’t really had a one bother me as raam. I can see how the match might not be THAT bad, but I can’t see it as anything other than raam’s advantage.


Ok, here’s. The only vid I’ve uploaded. I have a few more That I need to edit.

I tried the emergence against that Sadira jump. It tended to whiff. But maybe I’m thinking of a different move.


A few quick thoughts:

  • Get into the habit of punishing things with command grab. If TJ powerlines and you block it, command grab. If he knees at you and you block it, command grab. If you have meter for it, shadow command grab - that one legit punishes just about everything.
  • Use your instinct for super damaging combos to win rounds, not for double ultras. Double ultra is a waste, of both time and resources. If someone locks out on you and you have instinct, pop it and murder them. Kryll storm makes Raam’s combo damage absolutely insane.
  • Try to end your lockout combos before the timer disappears. And go into ultra as soon as you can once you get someone in danger.

On the last point:

If you have at least a bar available when you combo into Danger, it is advisable to go for EX Grab Ender instead of Ultra because 3P (FA) takes input priority over Ultra.