Hisako Matchup thread: Thunder

So I’ve noticed that I have a bit of trouble against Thunder.

I usually get grabbed a lot cause his command grab reaches super far. I can’t respond to ankle slicer and if I try to punish, he can do another ankle slicer and basically move his hitbox away. Basically I get really afraid of getting near him.

Should I use influence a lot more against thunder? Is Influence command grab invincible too?

I would like to hear from the pro Hisakos on how to deal with this match up?

I do play thunder. If you have any questions on any tech and shenanigans. I got you.

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First thing is no, influence isn’t going to be your go-to option for dealing with Thunder’s command grabs. They’re much longer range and, more importantly, way slower on start-up. Because they take so long to come out, they will mow through any command grab you attempt on them (they’re grab invulnerable throughout their entire animation like influence is, but since they’re like 15-20 frames from start-to-finish they just ignore influence and snatch you up as you’re recovering from your command grab attempt). So no, Hisako isn’t going to out-grapple Thunder, not really. If he’s using his command grab, then you need to be jumping.

This fight is won through the strength of Hisako’s normals and oki game. Her buttons control space extremely well, and your best pokes will outrange anything Thunder can do to you except perhaps shadow COTE. Use your buttons to keep him from coming in at will, and whenever you touch him be ready to confirm (if off a far HP) or dash in for some oki (if you land a sweep). Even without substantial offense mounted though, controlling space in this manner will push the Thunder to begin to try to come in with riskier options. Once he start’s doing things like sammamish in, punish accordingly and switch to offense - Thunder doesn’t get to yolo-crossup sammamish into Hisako.

Once Thunder’s down he is not especially different from any other character with a DP. Pressure him how you will, and try to keep him on his back for as long as possible. Once he blocks or otherwise gets out of your pressure, back away as best you can and reestablish your spacing and poke game.

On defense, come into the fight with the expectation that you will probably get knocked down, and that this experience will most likely suck. Do your best to watch Thunder’s spacings once you’re on your back - where he’s standing can often give you a heads up about how he’s going to pressure you. Far range Thunder on oki is likely either an overhead or command grab; make your choice and be prepared for whatever comes. A lot of times if the spacing is ambiguous (could be low/overhead/command grab) then I’ll simply hold up. This is wildly unsafe, and numbers wise is probably not a wise bet to make, but I’ve found that it pays off a lot more than it probably should. A lot of Thunder’s aren’t especially enamored with throwing buttons at a Hisako since they’ve got such a great (uncounterable) option available to them - utilize this against them and punish with neutral jump+button when the opportunity presents itself.

The biggest thing on defense though is simply that you have to capitalize on the opportunities Thunder gives you. Shadow counter his overheads, counter his buttons, and jumo his command grabs - almost anytime you get out of a Thunder pressure option, you should be using that opportunity to start a combo. It’s important for you to be able to adapt very quickly in this MU - you need to be able to identify favored attacks and setups quickly, or you will be dead in very short order. Also, do not guess or panic break - Thunder does way too much damage for you to be able suck up more than a few good sequences from him. Take you lumps and use the opportunity to figure out the finer points of how he;s maanging to open you up.


A lot of thunders like to regulate space for command grab. Use your far reaching normals to knock him out of it. Dp into rainmaker or skyalll on block is easy counter. Once they are afraid to use dp shenanigans. They have to play on the ground. Which hisako is BETTER than a chunk of the cast (when enforcing space and pressure). Never let a thunder control the ground. Thunder players like to keep you down,so look for patterns in what buttons they press. Punish unsafe strings. Respect his light dp. It’s full body invincible on start up but a well timed medium punch meaty will hit em before it comes out. His overhead is low. That’s easy counter. Don’t get to comfortable with your low normals. A lot of hisako players use disc heavy punch, down medium punch and down medium kick to control space. If thunder is command grab distant away from you, change up your options because ankle slicer will punish your low attacks.


I’ll second that - the timing required to beat CoTE with Influence is so stupid specific that you’re much better off jumping.

Agreed - I’ll only add that about half of the Thunders I fight like to take full advantage of his floaty jump, so keep that in check with J+HP from about half-screen to maintain that distance where you’re more effective than him when he attempts to close it with a jump.

Possession can be used to bait a wake-up DP or two, just be sure to have enough wrath to cancel. His DP also travels at such an angle that Heavy TK-ORZ will usually cross right over it.

I have definitely been whiff-punished with Ankle Slicer more than a few times - this is pretty solid advice.

I’d like to get a Thunder’s perspective - @Goldbaum @GalacticGeek anything to add? Anyone know of any other Thunder mains/alts on the forum?

For me personal this is a pretty hard MU, i got stomped multiple times by @STORM179. But in general i think this is a pretty even matchup overall.

When i get a knockdown it feels always to start playing a round of rock, paper, scissors and most of the time i lose. :smiley:
I talked in the “GG’s” thread, how i feel about that matchup and Storm had some nice advice for me.

IMO to boil this MU down is you have to really get into the other players head. i mean you can probably say that about every MU, but for me it’s even more important in this one. Because the main moves/strategies that both characters will use counter each other pretty well: Thunder wants to get in -->Hisako has far reaching normals --> Once Thunder got past that he wants to keep up the pressure on wakeup --> Hisako can counter that --> Thunder can command grab that --> Rock, Paper, Scissors!

I dont feel comfortable at all in that match and my explanation might seem pretty simple and superficial, but in my head this is how the match goes and you dont really need to know much more. Of course every information you have beyond that will help (AD-animations, spacing, etc.) but in the end it comes all down to the Counter/Grab/Hit-Game.

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I would agree that this MU in particular is one in which both sides have great options to shut each other down for making bad reads. :thumbsup:

It’s not whiffing. Ankle slicer is low attack invulnerable. You can never use a low when thunder is sparking them ankles up boi.

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Oh absolutely - I was speaking of Thunders popping Slicer in reaction to my carelessly whiffing Cr.HK/Cr.MK. Much in alignment with your advice on Slicer’s low invulnerability, those buttons should be used sparingly.

Speaking of Ankle Slicer’s 's special properties, it’s also throw invulnerable, so it’s a really good option for Thunder in this MU. Hisako can’t be so quick to dash-up > throw or fish with low pokes because of this particular move, she has to be far more careful.

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This has been some good advice guys. I definitely will practice this match up more with my local pal who plays thunder.

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I mean I play thunder too…


I had no idea! Well isn’t this convenient? LOL


Courtesy once again of @Marbledecker, here’s some Sako v Thunder matches:

I think this generally qualifies as high level play (both Thunder players are pro star holders) for both characters, and is a good example of some of the different permutations the match can take. I think Cannon’s Thunder is a better example of “traditional” high level Thunder play, with a solid mix of high/low meaties, command grabs, and resets, while One and Only’s Thunder is just insultingly disrespectful. Unfortunately, the replays mucked up for the next two games in that set, so we aren’t able to see the adaptations that were made. But hopefully this gives some ideas on ways you can approach both styles.


Oh man - using Shadow-ORZ to catch him out of his instinct dash @2:32 - so smart.

Lol. I really just wanted to see the mixup, but once I saw the dash I was like “you’re done!” :smile:

And then I got the accidental heavy linker… :sweat_smile:

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