Strategy against Tusk

Good afternoon, Im new to the game and the Forum as well. I’ve been playing fighting games for quite a while and I’m very familiar with the KI mechanics, but Im having huge issue when fighting Tusk. I play Shadow Jago and according to data of both, Shago should win this fight. However I still get caught in endless 70% damage combos and lots of locked outs…

I come from UFSIV and I use to play Cody, Im not the kind of guy who would sit in the corner and zone and zone all day long. Im use to put pressure and rush down… So probably Shago is not the best option for me for a main character. However, I do like the character a lot and I know its all about putting together the correct strategy to beat this button masher Tusk. Any hints? tips?

Thank you in advance

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I’m not sure how to advise you here… eating huge damage combos because you keep locking out isn’t unique to Tusk, you just really gotta level up your breaking.

What does Tusk do to create his openings that you are having trouble with? Do you have a video we could analyze? - folks around here both love and are really good at that.

Shago is hella mixups and little damage. As a former Cody main myself, I haven’t noticed a lot of transferable strategy. They’re pretty far apart in toolsets.

I mean, Shago can rushdown and has good buttons, but all specials are unsafe you don’t spend the Surge. Can’t bully for days the way Cody can - but you might like Jago for that. I know, Jago’s more Ryu than anything, but his pressure game feels SO DAMN CODY. Plus a good fireball, and a real DP. If you’re looking for someone that feels like Cody, give boring ol’ Jago a shot - perhaps, like me, you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

Also Omen. He’s a little crazier, and also suffers from low damage, but very comfortable for a former Cody as well. Hella pressure, reversal with Criminal input, and the most fun you can have with meter in the whole damn game.

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Stop first chance mash breaking and getting locked out.

Use your tools…wait for him to make a mistake thats unsafe and punish.

your slide reaches near full screen…tusks like to use a lot of HP normal’s…when they do that wait and either slide in or dive kick in…switch it up. Make him frustrated with constant projectiles…then rush in when they make a mistake.

But sounds to me your are beating yourself by locking out too often.

Also jumping HP pizza cutter is your friend


Don’t break against Tusk unless you’re damn sure you’re going to get it right - he does entirely too much damage to get locked out repeatedly against. Since you’re new to KI, I’d recommend only trying to break heavies to start.

I don’t advise really jumping at Tusk very much either - he has some of the best AA buttons in the game if he gets a read on the jump. Shago is all about unreactable mixups, and that’s what you’ll have to lean on.

If you provide some video we can probably help a lot more. But the most important thing (by far) is to stop getting locked out. Tusk will murder your lifebar if you’re doing that, and Shago doesn’t do anywhere near enough damage to make up that difference.


You used Cody Right?
So maybe the best match for you is TJ Combo.

If you’re searching something more agressive, try Rushdown characters such Riptor, Orchid and Wulf (maybe not Wulf).

About Tusk:
Tusk is a strong character, with amazing damage/enders.
But, he’s slow and has a limited movespeed.
His moveset is strong and can cancel easily your moves. But he’s slow. He’s very slow, compared to others characters.
He has a lot of frames after his moves and you can easily punish him hardly.

Just take it down and don’t stop your rush, except if you knocked him down.
He has good reversal move.

Shago isn’t a good choice towards your gameplay, because this character is mostly a mind-game/cross-up character.

Good luck.

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I must say IM REALLY F!@#$ HAPPY. I cant believe the huge amount of support in less than 30 mins! Thanks guys!

This is the kind of community every Video Game should have.

How do I upload vids here? I think I have some.

See the thing you all say about locked out is whats really killing me and the sad thing is that this guy wont stop doing these two button combos all day long. For some reason I have a hard time guessing which button he’s using as far as strength. I went to the lab and replicated his combo many times and realized many of his sword swings are alike regardless the strength.

Also. is there a way to punish his MP jump-in stinger thing without using the automatic fwd fwd P tornado thing Shago does? That eems to be his main opener and I virtually tried every single normal Shago has…If within range there is no escape, it WILL hnit and then hell breaks loose.

Thanks a lot guys.

BTW xbl PTYGreenkraken

So, the 2-button sword links are 20%+ unbreakable (combos become breakable after the 3rd hit, projectile>manual, or an opener/jump-in). The only thing you can really do to avoid those are tighten up your blocking during the neutral. They don’t hit OH or low, so you just gotta mind his range when you’re pushing buttons (or whatever, you know what I’m saying :slight_smile:)

In combo, the sword linkers can be kinda tricky too, but no more so than any other linker (linkers are generally harder to break than doubles, with some exceptions). Note that HP buttons swing upward, while MP swings downward and cr.MP is a straight stab. His sword special is also a downward swing, but if it’s being linked off a normal, it’s probably Lite. Oh, yeah, the Sword Linkers swing upward too… so I guess lab it until familiar enough to differentiate HP double from Sword Linker (HP2 is way slower, so that should help a little, at first).

If he tries to bounce you after a DP, that’s always a Heavy. Same for the impale hop after knockdowns (mind the risk of counterbreaks, though).

As for the j.MP, Shago’s got a Makoto-esque (totally vertical) DP, as well as the dash-upper (ff.P), so those should work for you depending on your spacing (adjust as needed) - but you could perhaps also try tele-dash under>punish landing? That will of course be spacing relevant, but if you find yourself flying away with whiffed dash-uppers a lot, it could be worth trying.

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The big thing when playing Shago is it’s often good to let your opponent come to you, especially when playing against characters like Tusk or Sabrewulf.
You’ve got fireballs to pester them, wait for them to make a mistake. Shadow Jago probably has the easiest time getting closer to his opponent of anyone in the cast thanks to his dash (which can be canceled into Dive Kick and DP) and his slide.
Keep in mind though, while his antics are great for confusing his opponent, total YOLO play is suicide. Every one of his specials (and I think a few of his normals) are unsafe on block, often disastrously so.

Now, a few more general tips.

As everyone else brought up, don’t first frame guess break. Wait until you see something you can react to. Often times not breaking a combo will force the opponent into doing moves that do less damage in an attempt to be harder to break. Of course, not breaking will still lead to a ton of damage, so you should definitely still do it. Just get better at it.

Specifically when dealing with Tusk, there are a few things to keep in mind. First off, jumping in on Tusk is suicide. Not only does he have a DP (with both an invincible version and some with deflect windows), his crouching HP has a massive hitbox that hits behind him, and it deals close to 20% raw damage on counter hit. I’ve taken entire life bars with it because people just wouldn’t stop jumping.
He’s also a character you’ll want to punish, rather than try to interrupt most of the time. If he wins the trade, it will hurt, no matter how good your breaks are, simply because he starts with so much raw damage off of sword normals.

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I wish I could fight this guy in Ranked. I main as Tusk and I don’t think I have ever won a fight vs a Shago. No matter what i do i get hit with a slide or a dive kick. Even if I manage to pin him down in a corner he just teleports out as soon as i even think of touching a button. And trying to break Shago’s combos may as well just be flipping coins. Every linker and auto double looks the exact same to me. As far as Shago’s moves being punishable, i don’t see that at all. Even if I block a slide or dive kick, the moment i hit a button to punish, he is already hitting me with something else.

It is especially frustrating when i get matched with 5-10 Shagos in a row and lose all of my ranked points. They might just throw a Hisako in somewhere because i am useless against her as well.

Do you also have difficulties breaking Jago? Shago’s autodoubles are the same as his.

In terms of punishing him, try to use this simple flowchart (not optimal, but should hit him):

  • If you block Shago slide, mash jab into opener.
  • If you block divekick, try heavy kick into opener (or simply do raw spirit step->slide)
  • if you block DP, medium kick into opener

As I said, these aren’t optimal, but they should work in all situations. Best of luck :thumbsup:

When Tusk was officially released a few months ago, a lot of people thought Shago and Hizako were bad MUs for Tusk. Well, time has passed, people have had enough time to develop strategies against those characters, to the point I no longer think those 2 MU are bad for Tusk. In fact, without being a pro player, I’ve hardly lost against those characters in recent months.

So, how to beat Tusk? First of all, take a few seconds to see how your opponent plays; is he offensive? or is he waiting for you?. Overly offensive players are actually the easiest to beat as Shago; all you have to do is use Shago’s quick openers at the right time (since Tusk is slower than most of the cast) and hit Tusk accordingly, just wait and punish.

However, more experienced Tusk players, who are more familiar with the MU, will know how unsafe Shago’s arsenal is, therefore it is likely they will be the ones waiting for you to make a mistake. If that’s the case, you’re gonna have to be quite unpredictable; full screen dive kicks and slide kicks WILL NOT work against those players and WILL get you straight into damage city. Therefore try to use ambiguous cross ups, use your meter for surge and and make calculated risks, so you always keep them guessing about your next move.

Like you were already told, don’t guess break, specially against heavy hitters like Tusk, a couple of bad guesses and you can say goodbye to your life bar. Go to the combo breaker training, try to get a feeling of Tusk’s auto doubles (at least the heavy auto doubles at first) and try to break only when you’re 100% sure of it. Be mindful of counter breaks though, if you keep breaking the same auto doubles all the time, chances are your rival will try to counter break, and that’s something you really don’t want against Tusk, so don’t break everything either.

I hope this helps :slight_smile:

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Tag me anytime you like bro…PTYGreenkraken…We can both learn from each other so you’ll stop loosing your points and I’ll get better with my overall Tusk machup knowledge…I love fighting games but Im really friendly so no hidden agenda here =)