Hi all! This is Seiji Aoki, chief producer of Virtua Fighter 5 Ultimate Showdown, available now at no additional cost to PlayStation Plus members until August 2. Also available now in the PlayStation Now library.
It has been an amazing month watching millions of players return to the ring with this series of legendary fights, especially all the new players who have had their first glimpse of the deep strategy and complex balance that define Virtua’s combat. Fighter. Today, we’re offering the best advice for newcomers who are taking their first steps to becoming the next legend of the World Fighting Tournament.
Virtua Fighter uses intuitive and simple controls compared to many other fighting games. There are only three basic commands: Punch, Kick and Guard. Each can be executed with just one button. Simple, right? Barely.
Combining these three buttons with different stick movements literally opens up hundreds of combinations for each character. Add to that the dynamic strategy of 3D staged combat and you start to experience the real depth behind such a simple control scheme. Perfecting the timing required to achieve the right combo at the right time is the first step in mastering Virtua Fighter.
For new players, your first destination should be Practice Mode. Every Virtua Fighter has had a robust tutorial and VF5 Ultimate Showdown is no exception. Taking the time to learn the basic systems and moves before experimenting with more complex combinations will pay off once you’re ready to jump into competitive play.
The first two moves to learn are takedown attacks and breakfalls (fall recovery). In Virtua Fighter, you can continue to attack when your opponent is down (or take damage if you are down). Racking up extra damage (or avoiding it) after a crucial takedown often makes the difference between winning or losing.
The other crucial system to learn is how the basic frameworks work. Understanding how frames work will help you intuitively make the right attack or block in any given situation. This is a difficult system to master, so when starting out it is best to keep in mind that “if your attack is blocked, defend immediately” and “if you block, immediately go on the offensive”.
Learn how to do both of these things reliably and you’ll be well on your way to experiencing the fast and smooth fights unique to this game.
Choose the right character
Each Virtua Fighter character has a unique fighting style with many different combos to choose from. Choosing the character that suits your playstyle (and being in control of your choice) makes all the difference when you engage in competitive play.
For new players, I would recommend starting with one of the following three characters: Jacky Bryant, Jeffry McWild, or Sarah Bryant.
Jacky is a relatively standard and balanced character. It’s a great choice if you’re just looking to master your basic moves. His perilous kick (K facing right) is an effective way to turn the tables when faced with an over-enthusiastic opponent, but beware of abusing it against more advanced fighters.
Jeffry is a powerful character who can deal a lot of damage using his unrestrained Pankration fighting style that combines boxing, wrestling and kicking. Its controls are pretty straightforward, so try launching a knee attack (K facing right) or toss in a throw for significant damage.
Sarah is a slightly more technical fighter whose diverse martial arts style uses a lot of kicking. Focus on learning the combos that open up for an exceptionally sleek fighting style.
Whichever character you choose to start with, take the time to learn their basic moves and combos in Practice Mode before testing your competitive play skills. It pays to practice, and once you get a feel for all the many combinations and sets of moves available, you’ll start to really experience the depth of gameplay that Virtua Fighter has to offer.
Hope this has been helpful – it has been incredibly rewarding to see millions of new players experience Virtua Fighter for the first time after all these years, and we are extremely grateful to our community for continuing to invest your time and passion. . As always, thank you for your support – we’ll catch up to you in the ring!