R Mika using her meter
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Street Fighter Terms for Beginners (Part 1)

Aug 25, 2016
Image via: nichegamer.com

School is back in session. Time for all of us to stop late night gaming for at least a week as we convince ourselves we’re going to study hard and get good grades. Oh, it’s only me who pretends to be a good student at the beginning of every school year? My bad… I know school means less gaming, so I’ve put together a list of Street Fighter terms that’s easy to skim.

Street Fighter terms for beginners

Studying is important. That’s why I’ve put together a bit of study materials for you. Street Fighter fandom has seen a lot of growth recently, so here is a list of Street Fighter terms you may hear while watching your next tournament. There’s a lot to learn, this is part 1 of 2.

You’ve already learned the basics of Smash, time to learn the language of Street Fighter.


When a player has 2 options for attacking and only 1 can be defended. The defensive player then has a 50/50 shot of picking the correct defensive move.


A ground attack which hits the opponent who is in the air. Anti-Air attacks typically have higher priority than an air-based attack.


Using a certain move or behavior with the intention of getting your opponent to react. Once they react, you punish their movement.


Blocking is a way to reduce the incoming damage of a move. It puts the blocking player in a position to counter attack. This is also known sometimes as “guard.”

Ryu blocking Ken in Street Fighter Terms
Image via: gameshouter.com

Block Stun:

Refers to the time after performing a successful block where one of the players cannot perform a move. Block stun can happen to either the defending or attacking player.

Bread and Butter (or BnB):

Refers to the common, effective combo or style of a specific character. Typically the BnB is what players learn when trying a new character.


When another move is input before the first move is complete. Many combos require buffering of future inputs before the move is actually executed.


A cancel is when the player drops out of an animation with another input. This saves animation frames and allows for faster recovery or attacks.

Chip Damage:

The damage taken while blocking. Chip damage is less than the typical damage a move would do.

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A cross-up is a situation where the defending player can have difficulty determining if they should block left or right. For instance, when one character attacks while directly over the head of the other.


A frame is one individual picture which makes up an animation. The amount of frames in a move determines how quickly it is executed.

Hit Box:

The actual area a character can be hit. The hit box does not always match up perfectly to the character’s model.

Juggling in Street Fighter Terms
Image via: kotaku.com


A combo in which a player hits their opponent multiple times in mid air. The opponent only touches the ground at the end of the combo.


The instance of any 2 characters against each other. A matchup can be good or bad for each character depending on how easily it is to play against that opponent.

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Cameron Rogowski
Long-time blogger, esports fan, last of the AP Tryndamere. I follow every game I can find the time to watch and have an unhealthy fascination with esports in the Southeast Asian region. You can catch me on twitter @cdrogowski.
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