Hes probably using meaties, (with a LK, thats pretty fucking boss btw) or Glacius’ wakeup puddle doesnt have any or enough I-frames or Glacius’s puddlepunch has too much startup frames.
First turn on Frame Data in the Dojo options and start with buttons.
You are looking for “Start up frames”, how long it takes the move to come out.
–(Moves with the fastest startup tend to be Light moves.)
“Active frames” how long the move can damage someone while its out.
—(Meaties work on this principle by having a LOT of active frames, this is why a “meaty” LK which has 1-2 active frames is boss. Meaty buttons tend to be st.MK, anything with good startup/recovery and 4 active frames.)
And “Recovery frames” how long your move takes to finish after its come out.
—(Heavy moves, special moves and DPs tend to have the most recovery frames)
(Im going to be using the word “moves” in reference to specials and/or buttons. If I dont differentiate between the two, then I probably mean both when I refer to moves.
Next learn frame advantage, does this move generate frames when blocked? If it does its called “Safe on block” and means either the “Startup frames” of your moves come out X frames faster, or their “recovery frames” recover X frames faster. Moves that generate frames tend to be Light buttons, and/or light moves. And + on block lets you continue pressuring your opponent with moves before they are out of blockstun.
If it doesnt generate or subtract frames, its “Neutral on block”. Your moves dont come out sooner or recover faster.
If theres a big -X on your move’s frame data, it means this move needs X more frames after your opponent has blocked it. Basically YOUR OPPONENT’s moves come out X frames sooner, or recover X frames faster. Essentially you’re fucked.
A way around this is to “Cancel” the “recovery frames” of a button with a Special move thats Neutral or +Frames on block. The recovery frames on a button is usually cancellable with a special move.
Or use a button that’s +frames on being blocked to let you turn a move thats usually unsafe, into neutral on block. An example of this would be Shago’s Cr.LK is +1 frame on block, doing 2 Cr.LK on block in a row means his next move is +2 frames on block, making his L.Slide special which is -2 frames on block recover 2 frames faster, making it 0 frame move on block, making it safe on block.
Why youd want to do the latter is if youre trying to pressure your opponent.
Or do Shago’s Cr.LP which is +2 on block and a Cr.LK on block giving him +3 frames, making his L.Slide not only safe, but also +1 frame on recovery, meaning his LP button that has a 3frame “startup” comes out 1 frame faster than an opponents LP. This is an example of a FRAMETRAP, where the opponent has enough time to react with a fast move, but your move like LP comes out 1 frame faster, effectively counterhitting them.
3 frames in the golden number for KI’s frame data. 3 frames is how the fastest normal can come out, which should be LP for everybody in the cast except for Sabrewulf who’s buttons are 4 on startup iirc.
The only thing faster than LP is usually a 2 frame DP of some sort, or a move with I-frames(again like a DP) tend to stuff things in general.
Frame Advantage On hit isnt AS important as frame advantage on block, it helps with manuals, I guess. And you could experiment On hit frame advantage with frametraps. Maybe intentionally drop the combo to go for a mixup. Throw in a grab here and there.
Hypothetically you could cross someone up with your massive +5 frames on hit with your special moves.
Most people would just go through the combo system though.
Next is applying your knowledge of framedata to Special moves/Command moves. What is +/- on block or hit? What are your special/command moves special properties? Does your character have a Stagger move?
Rekkas for example are a string of buttons when you dial them in they just come out. Sabrewulf and Shin Hisako have Rekkas. But these Rekkas have other properties like being unsafe on block and this is where experimentation comes in.
Certain Grabs have special properties, Shago’s for example lets you juggle opponents.
After that you can turn on HIT BOXES. Each move reaches a certain amount. There are two types of Hitboxes.
The first hitbox is the range and direction of where your move deals damage. Pretty self explanatory. The hitbox of a move can also let you hit opponents from behind, this is why Cross-ups work.
Its important to remember that just because a move comes out faster than an opponent’s move can recover, it doesnt mean its hitbox is large enough to hit them. Light moves tend to have short hitboxes to compensate coming out so fast.
The second hitbox is the range where your opponent’s character “flinches” when your move comes out. This is the distance where if your opponent is walking backwards, the game automatically makes them block. This is useful for controlling space when an opponent is walking back.
Figure out the proper spacing for moves. Some characters like Kilgore, if you have the wrong spacing and you use a special, he DROPS the combo.
Lastly, you can set Shadow bar and Instinct Meter on Infinite. Your character gains different properties when shadowed or in instinct and learning certain combos or setups can be very beneficial and lead to optimized damage.
Shago for example, when he has instinct, his moves automatically come out +2 frames faster. I have seen people Manual TWICE IN A ROW when they have instinct with shago.
Now experiment with combos, cancelling, manuals, juggles and setups to find things that are ambiguous on break or ways to continue offense in alternative ways. For example, did you know Shago’s Manual Cr.LK and Manual Cr.MK are hard to differentiate with his Slide move? Or did you know you can Cancel Jago’s GRAB with a shadow move?
Thats all Ive got off the top of my head, if you got any questions and if I think I know something about it, feel free to ask and I’ll answer the best I can. But be warned, Im pretty trash. If some of the more experienced players say Im wrong about something, I probably am and listen to them instead.