The King of Fighters XIII/FAQ

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So, you want to learn KoFXIII?

Congratulations! You've taken the first step to learning one of the most competitive, dynamic, and well-balanced fighting games in recent history, King of Fighters XIII! Before you throw yourself into the Dreamcancel wiki browsing for detailed information, here are some essential tips to ease your transition into the world of competitive King of Fighters!

Before you begin, consider your goals. How competitive do you wish to become?

If you don't know a thing about KoFXIII right now, ask yourself where you hope to eventually end up in terms of skill. If you plan on being a competitive player, you will need to enter the game with a serious mentality. To help you maintain this attitude, you should set realistic goals to pursue. Before you begin any journey, you will need a destination to go towards!

If you can't set a realistic goal, perhaps it's better for you to just stay casual. Otherwise, you will find yourself investing a lot of time and energy inefficiently, which will inevitably lead to disappointment.

"What characters should I play? I don't want to pick garbage characters."

The coolest thing about KoFXIII is that every character is good! You can play anyone you want! Of course, some characters are better than others, but as far as the competitive community can tell, so far, even the worst characters in the game are totally viable. You will have more fun playing characters you genuinely like, so pick your favorite characters and see if they fit your style!

Start in Practice Mode

Many new players simply throw themselves into online/versus mode without first learning about how the game actually works in detail. While this is fine for casual players, you will find that it is completely unproductive for becoming competitive. It will be essential to be in Practice/Training mode for at least a few hours before you begin to really understand how your character works. The very first thing you should do with your character is to learn their max damage, no meter, midscreen combo. Start this combo with a hop in C or D (hard punch or hard kick). Simply doing this will get you used to hopping. After you have mastered this combo, there are many more advanced things to practice. Simply knowing your meterless bread and butter combo for each of your characters will open your eyes to further possibilities.

Make sure to have all of your practice mode data turned on so that you can see exactly how much damage/stun you are doing!

Focus on Fundamentals

As many players have said, KoFXIII is an "honest" fighting game. This means that you will not be able to win because of luck or gimmicky tricks (although, there is a time and a place for everything ;) ). To become skilled at KoFXIII, you will need solid spacing, hit confirms, reactions, meter management, and footsies. Focus on developing these skills, and do not try to base your game plan on guessing.

Ordering Your Team

Team order in the game revolves around using your meter. If you are picking up the game for the first time, don't worry about it at all. Learning how your characters use meter will come with time and practice. Your best team order will present itself to you as time goes on.

When learning the game, it's a good idea to put your weakest character first. You will find that your first character will get the most play time over the long run. This gives you chances to practice with that character more.

Let the Game Teach You About Yourself

This might sound a little odd, but always keep in mind that becoming skilled at fighting games is about conquering yourself just as much as it's about defeating your opponent. As a casual player, this game can be another type of simple entertainment, similar to watching TV. As a competitive player, there is so much more to discover. If you decide to compete, you will inevitably find yourself in challenging situations that inspire panic, fear, arrogance, and frustration. How you deal with and overcome your own emotions in game will define you as a player. In this sense, becoming a great KoFXIII player is a process of constant self improvement. Keep this in perspective as you pursue your competitive goals.

We here at Dreamcancel sincerely hope that this introduction has been helpful, and perhaps has stirred your appetite for competition! If you have more questions as you dive into the game, please visit our Training Dojo and character specific threads in the forums section!

Intro written by David Kong

Visit David Kong's Q&A thread here: [1]

Where do I begin?

Dream Cancel's very own Kane317 and the well known James Chen provide an overview of KOF XIII's systems and gameplay in this video series hosted by ATLUS.

Understanding the Offensive Game Play of KOFXIII

Q: How can I effectively use hops?

A:In the KOF series Short hops are done by simply pressing up in whatever direction you are jumping for the character to jump slightly into the air. Hyper hops are done by quickly pressing down and then tapping up in the direction you intend on going. Both versions of the hops can be used for both defensive and offensive maneuvers. Short hops will help you conduct instant overhead (which basically revolves around the player, using the appropriate normal move during a hop) when you jump towards them. Short hops allow make it easier to mix up your offense and conduct safe jumps (safe jumping requires players to jump in a manner where they can land in time to guard and avoid any incoming attacks when necessary). The purpose of hyper hops are to close and open gaps between both characters quickly. Hyper hops used as an offensive tool allow players to apply a high pressure game plan and rush the opponent down.

Q: "Can I throw characters out of block stun in this game?"

No. The character is throw invincible during their blocking animation or during their wake up."

Q: "Which characters have regular projectiles as special moves or special move that can register as projectiles?"

A: Kyo, Beni, Terry, Andy, Joe, Ash, Saiki, Duo, Mai, King, Yuri, K', Kula, Kensou, Athena, Leona, Robert, Ryo, Takuma, EX Iori, Mr. Karate, Mature NOTE - some of the character's projectiles are suited for different purposes or have different properties. There are also plenty of special moves that give the character long range options.

Q:"What are the CD attacks used for? They seem so useless!!"

A: The CD attacks are blowback attacks or knockdown attacks. When hit the opponent with these, it will cause a techable knockdown, but you can not attack (juggle) the opponent after hitting the opponent with this, unless you get a counter hit from the CD attack. This is trustworthy for spacing yourself. The characters in this game have different uses for this and they can also whiff cancel them into different special moves.

Q: I'm having trouble performing a certain motion sometimes. Are there any motion shortcuts or bufferings?

A: Yes there are! Here is a post outline many different motion shortcuts you can try:

Q: Does every character have a normal air throw? How do you do it?

A: No. Only Clark, Mai, Benimaru and Yuri has an air throw. You perform it by pressing towards, or away, or down and pressing heavy punch or kick (Benimaru and Mai only have a heavy punch air throw) while in the air and being close to your opponent. They have no whiff animation, only the normal will come out if the throw is out of range.

Q: "How do you perform a running throw?"

A: You need to run towards your opponent so that you are within throwing range. When you do get close enough during your run, tap back and C (or D) quickly. Pressing back on the directional notations will cause the character to stop running - players can never throw the opponent while actually running. This can prevent opponents from getting overly predictable or defensive.

Q: "When is it okay to Neo Max?"

A:To use as punisher, hit confirming into it, and using it in a combo. Raw Neo Max moves take a huge amount of meter (three super stocks and a full drive meter to exact) and most of them can be easily punished if they are blocked or whiffed. Try to use Neo Max's while in HD mode, that way while in HD mode you will only have to spend two meters instead of three and it will be easier to combo into.

Q:"Are there any 50/50's in this game?"

A:No. The rolling mechanic nullifies 50/50's completely. It is possible to conduct mix ups in various situations, however.

Q:"How do you build meter easily?"

A:You build meter by whiffing certain special attacks, successfully attacking the opponent, guarding against any kind of special move, and getting hit by the opponents moves. In this version of KOFXIII however, when on defense (blocking or taking damage from hits/combos) your meter builds faster.

Q:"Are there any unblockable set ups in this game?"

A: Yes, but this mostly applies to characters with command grabs. There are also moves in this game that allow characters to outright break the characters guard and it is also possible to Guard Break through a large sequence of moves, especially with Hyper Drive I.E. Evo Moment #13 - BBZ Ascends Beyond Super Saiyan

Q: "Can you use move combinations from the character trials in a real match?"

A: The majority of the character trials in KOFXIII are either useless or impractical. This will either be because the combo consumes way too much meter for minimal damage or it is extremely situational.

Q: "Are there any grappling characters in KOFXIII?"

A: The grappling characters are Vice, Raiden, Daimon, and Clark. But, technically speaking, there are no "true" grappling characters in this game. Even if the said characters did not have grappling moves, they will still be viable anyhow, due to the nature of their move set and fundamental mechanics of KOFXIII. (~JuiceboxKing).

Q: "What non-grappling characters have command throws in their arsenal?"

A: Kyo (EX Move only), Beni, Elisabeth, Duo (Neo Max only), Shen, Hwa (DM only), Ash (Neo Max only), Saiki (DM only), Yuri, Maxima, Iori, EX Iori, Takuma, Robert, Athena, Mr. Karate, and Kensou (DM only)

Q: How can I find out if a certain move causes a hard untechable knockdown?

A: In practice mode turn on "passive mode" which will cause the dummy to automatically tech when they are knocked down. If a certain move has a hard knockdown property, they will not tech when they hit the ground.

Q: "Do any of the characters have a wall kick of some sort?"

A:Yes. The following characters that have a wall kick are Robert, Mai, and (to an extent) Kim.

Q: "How do match ups work in KOFXIII? What about top tiers and low tiers?"

The game is very well balanced. While there are tiers available for this game, the gaps between the characters are easily negligible - indirectly making this game similar to TTT2 or VF in a manner of speaking. The game rewards the players for understanding the fundamentals, neutral game, and good decision making.

Combo Related FAQS

Q: "How can I practice hit confirming in this game?"

A: In training mode set the dummy to either standing or crouching (depending on if you want to practice standing hit confirms or crouch B hit confirms), and set guard to random guard.

Q:"Does this game have combo links?

A: Yes but they are mostly not necessary as they are not intergral to KOFXIII. The KOFXIII engine focuses on chain canceling normals. It should be noted however that linking normal moves with others can cause some big damage and provide a little more offensive maneuvers - but they are not mandatory due to the nature of the game. Even if the player does not get the link down, the player can still frame trap with the follow normal move/special move.

Q: Do I REALLY need to learn how to do HD combos in this game? They look tough.

A: No, you don't. It's certainly not the only way to win; the meter game in XIII offers a lot of options to do HD's, several drive cancels to extend combos, or another way you want to play. If you're trying to get the most out of playing, one should at least know some easy/intermediate ones. The ones who get the most out of any fighter are the ones who look into everything about it.

Q: Can all characters combo of a throw in a corner? I saw Benimaru and Kensou do it.

A: No, only Benimaru, Kensou and Chin can juggle an opponent after a throw.

Q: Can you combo into command throws?

A: Yes, you sure can but only to the instant command throws.

Q: "Is it possible to enter HD mode during a combo?"

A: It certainly is for many characters, especially during juggle combos.

Adjusting to Game Play when Coming From Different Games

Q: Are there Alpha Counters in KOFXIII?

A:No. There are other options that have similar concepts however: The Guard Cancel Roll and the Guard Cancel Blowback. The Guard Cancel Blowback is the closest thing to a "Alpha Counter", while the Guard Cancel Roll serves a different cause. To use the Guard Cancel Blowback, the player must press D and C at the same while guarding an attack, and the character will perform their default Blow Back move to knock incoming opponents away and provide space.

Q: Is there is "P-Linking" in this game?

A: No. P-Linking is a mechanic that is only resident to the SFIV series.

Q:"Does HD mode work like X-Factor from Marvel?"

A: No. Not even a little bit. Most players of KOFXIII tend to look at HD mode as if it were an easier variant of BC mode from The King of Fighters 2002 Unlimited Match series. All it really does is allow player access to certain tools for defeating the opponent. In this case, the player can activate HD mode when they have a full drive meter, which is essentially another standardized meter system of KOFXIII.

Q:Is there Negative Edge in this game, like SF?

A:Not really but you can still influence your ability to perform special moves and DM's by holding buttons for a little longer for the game to register your command as you are still doing another special move. This is extremely useful if you are conducting HD combos or trying to complete the trials. This can be seen as a "Positive Edge".

Q: "I'm from SFIV. How does the meter system work in this game? Is it similar to the Revenge System/Ultra, too?"

A: The Revenge Meter in SFIV fills when the opponent is getting hurt only. The Revenge also allows characters to utilize Ultra Moves, which is the characters most powerful of that SFIV game. There is also a four bar system for SFIV that fills by traditional means. The Super Meter and Drive Meter of KOFXIII serves various purposes: The Super Meter is meant for EX Moves, Supers, EX Supers, Guard Cancel Rolls, Guard Cancel Blowback, and Neo Max. The Drive Meter is meant for cancelling special moves into special moves (drive canceling), cancelling special moves into super moves (super canceling), using raw Neo Max, and using Hyper Drive Mode. The basic consensus for meter is to allow for universal defensive maneuvers, conduct various high-damaging HD combos, and to help the player win matches.

Q:"Are there Focus Attacks and FADC's in this game?"

A: No, but the CD attacks and the drive canceling that allude to this system however. CD attacks used to knock the opponent away (that which can also be whiff cancelled and use during jumps), and drive cancels can be done by inputting special move notations immediately after another special move. You can never drive cancel out of projectile moves. But, you super cancel into the character Super move (or EX Super) by inputting the characters Super move notations after the projectile (or the special move). There are some special moves that can not be drive/super canceled from period.

Q: I play Marvel. Does this game have a magic series when doing combos? Like light attacks, medium attacks into heavy?

A: No. The combo flow is either a heavy punch or kick into a command normal, into a special move or a super, or a light normal into a command normal into a special or super, etc. Different characters have different cancelable normals. More info can be found here:

Q: "Does KOFXIII possess Custom Combo's like CVS2 does in it's A groove system?"

A: Yes, in a manner of speaking. The "custom combos" of KOFXIII consist of making use of the drive meter and HD mode. The drive meter has two segments and the player can cancel special moves into other special moves or super moves at the cost of one segment. If the drive meter is full, the player can enter HD mode and conduct customizable combos that way, as it allows you to freely cancel special moves into other special for a limited time.

Q: "I'm a CVS2 player, new to KOFXIII! I use the P and K groove a lot in CVS2. Does this game have the Just Defend mechanic like the K groove does? The P groove replicates the mechanics of 3S while the K groove is designed to imitate the mechanics of Garou: MOTW and Samurai Showdown BTW..."

A: There isn't. But, KOFXIII does have multiple defensive options that relate to making use of meter to conduct Guard Cancel Rolls and Guard Cancel Blowback. There are some character with autoguard that allow them to attack without worrying about getting hurt in the process. Ryo is also a character who can replicate the P and K groove mechanics of CVS2 to an extent.

Q: "I play CVS2 competitive and I use C groove a lot because it gives me access to multiple Super moves and other standardized mechanics. Does KOFXIII, have multiple versions of super moves and options?"

A:Yes. The characters in this game will always have two versions of a super move and one Neo Max. A regular super move will cost one meter. A EX Super Move will cost two meters and is usually far powerful than a regular Super Move. A Neo Max is the characters most damaging move, which will cost three meters and a full drive meter. However, if the character is in HD mode, they can use Neo Max moves for two meters instead, making it a very useful mechanic.

Q: "Are there any charging characters in KOFXIII, like in SF?"

A: Yes. There are characters that have charge motions. The following characters that have charge motions in their special moves are Takuma, Leona, Clark, Ralf, Ash, Kim, and Robert. The characters that literally do play the role of a charging character are Leona and Ash. Also, please note that it does not take as long to charge a special move in order for it to be executed. Always keep in mind that this is a very offense oriented game, so you can never play the said characters with charge moves too defensive (i.e. down backing) - if the player is actually getting away with this then the opponent does not completely understand the offensive system of the game.

Q: "I'm a KOF98 player. I realize that the HD mode has some similarities to the Max Mode of 98 and I started recently playing KOFXIII! When the character enters HD mode, does the character get a higher damage output, access to stronger versions on their supers, and stronger push on guard from their attacks?"

A: No, the affects of both HD mode from KOFXIII and KOF98 are different but they serve the same purpose in helping the player achieve victory. What makes the Hyper Drive mode different from Max Mode from KOF98, is that there is no damage output increase. HD mode allows players to freely cancel special moves into other different special move notations, even while the opponent is guarding, and it allows the player to Max Cancel from their Super into Neo Max.

Q:"I come from Guilty Gear. Are there any Insta-Kills in this game?"

A: Not really, but their are Neo Max which are a close equivalent and can easily be comboed into, especially during HD mode. They would normally take around half of the opponents health or a little more. Every character in this game can kill for four/five meters. Some characters are able to take all of the opponents stamina for less, however (some examples: Leona, Yuri, Takuma, Claw Iori, Shen).

Q:"I am a GG player. Does KOFXIII have Gatling Combos and Roman Cancels in this game?"

A: The offensive system in the game favors mostly rush down but still requires very good insight on fighting game fundamentals - If a character has a command move, they can normal cancel a close standing C (Hard Punch) and (on many occasions) D (Hard Kick) into their command move. The command moves in turn can cancel into special move to help the player continue and/or finish their combo. Some command moves may not naturally combo from close standing C's or D's however and some of them might not cancel into special moves. Chain combo from light normal moves and canceling closing standing C's and D's into command moves are somewhat equivalent to the Gatling system of Guilty Gear. The equivalent of "Roman Cancels" in this game are drive cancels which allow players to cancel special into other special moves. Keep in mind that special moves can never cancel into itself unless it is the EX version. Also remember that some special moves can not be drive cancelled at all.

Q: Are there instant overheads in this game like there are in 3S?

A: Yes but they are done manually. You simply perform a short hop into the air and use a normal move that will hit the opponent. This is a very good method of applying some high functional offense.

Q: " I am usually playing UMVC3 a lot. Does KOFXIII possess chain combos or ABC combos?"

A: Yes, there are chain combos in KOFXIII. In fact, chain combos play a pivotal role in KOFXIII. It is important to learn which light normal moves can cancel into specials and combo naturally. It is also important to understand the properties of the said normal moves. Chain combos are important because they help the player utilize hit confirmed combo starters and block strings. There are no true ABC combos but some characters do have target combos that are useful for keeping block strings safe and for continuing combos.

  • Example of a chain combo: Kyo = crouching B(light kick), crouching B (light kick), standing B (light kick)... etc
  • Secondary example of a chain combo: Terry Bogard = crouching B(light kick), crouching A(light punch)... etc
  • Example of a chain combo that can go into a command move as a natural combo:

Kyo = crouching B(light kick), crouching A(light punch), df+D... etc

  • Another example of conducting chain combos into command moves: King = crouching B(light kick), crouching B(light kick), standing B(light kick), df+D(heavy kick).......
  • Target Combo Example: Mai = standing B(light kick)> standing D(heavy kick) or Terry's cr.A (crouching Light Punch)> cr.C (crouching Heavy Punch)
  • Generic combo from a hit confirm and chain combo: Iori = crouching B(light kick), crouching A(light punch), qcb+A......

Also keep in mind that standing C(heavy punch) will cancel into most command moves.

Q: "I play a lot of 3D fighters such as Tekken and DOA. Does this game have any sort of strings for the player to be concerned about?"

A: In a manner of speaking there are strings in KOFXIII but they not really done in the same fashion as 3D games are. A character such as EX Kyo (the DLC character) can perform an attack string such as cr.B to his f+B (f + light kick) command move. In this case, the player is chain canceling into a command move from a light normal move. The games combo system mostly consists of chain cancels. Again, there are also combo links in this game. While combo links are useful, they are not particularly necessary. Much like a 3D game, movement plays an extremely important role in KOFXIII, especially sense the game is very fast paced. Rekka's can also be treated as strings but they are generally risky to perform, especially on block. Every Rekka in this game is also delayable. These are also more risky then the delayed strings from the Tekken series.

Q: "Are there any deliberate "crush" moves, like in 3D fighters like Tekken, DOA, or VF?"

A: There are moves that can avoid certain moves with different hit detections. For example, if Kyo performs his standing D (standing hard kick), he will have low invincibility for a short moment during the moves animation. Hwa Jai's and Mai's standing CD attack for example are both invincible to low hitting moves for a short moment while they are perform the said normal. There are also some moves that may go underneath moves with high (or even mid) hit detection moves, such as Chin's rolling punch series. Then there are also moves that have attack invincibility, common to the majority of 2D fighting games.

Q: "DOA has a "Hold System" which essentially allows people to parry attacks of a certain hit detection. Is this present in KOFXIII as well?"

A: Throughout the KOF series in general, there had been characters that could parry/counteract certain moves, depending on which hit detection they are (characters such as Geese Howard and Kasumi are infamous for this sort of mechanic). As of KOFXIII however, the characters can parry/counteract attacks are Ryo, Elisabeth, Goro (Neo Max only), Mr. Karate, and Chin. It is also important to keep in mind that there are also projectile counters and auto-guard attacks as well, within the KOFXIII fighting game.

Q:"Does this game even play like SFIV?"

A: No. The game is far more fast paced and the system is designed around the rush down concept. The stuff the player learns from SFIV is never going to translate very well into KOF. It is also generally a bad idea to play KOF as if it were SF.

Q:"Does HD mode work like X-Factor from Marvel?"

A: No. Not even a little bit. Most players of KOFXIII tend to look at HD mode as if it were an easier variant of BC mode from The King of Fighters 2002 Unlimited Match series. All it really does is allow player access to certain tools for defeating the opponent. In this case, the player can activate HD mode when they have a full drive meter, which is essentially another standardized meter system of KOFXIII.

Q:"Are there corner cross ups, like SFIV?"

No. Corner cross ups are only possible when the opponent is back turned towards the opponent while being near the corner. Some characters can cause back turn naturally by throwing opponents into the corner and then cross opponents up (King and Mai - NOTE: King and Mai on the PLAYER ONE side can also roll through the opponent as well. Otherwise, to conduct a corner cross up, the player needs to jump).


Q:"When should I roll?"

A:When you perform a regular roll, you are invincible to all attacks except for throws. Use the roll to avoid projectiles, avoid cross-ups or jump-ins, and get out of the corner while the opponent is trying to pressure you. If you perform a Guard Cancel Roll, the character is completely invincible from start up to the very end of the characters rolling sequences, throws included. Also, you can extend the distance you travel when you roll by double tapping forward on your control pad/stick or while the character is running.

Q: "My opponent keeps tick throwing me with a normal throw and/or command throw. Is there any way to stop it?"

A: Try alternate guarding:

Q: "My opponent keeps hopping at me and pressuring me too much! What should I do? DX"

A: Stay calm and block any incoming attacks. If the opponent is hopping towards, use the character standing C (standing HP) or a good standing normal to beat the opponent out of the air. You can also roll out of the way while that are hopping towards you. Another way to stop incoming hop attacks is to utilize characters stand A or B normal as most characters have one or both options to stop them.

Q: "My opponent is crazily spamming projectiles! How do I counteract this?"

A: You should generally not be in a position for this to take place. The player should remain a mid range distance away from the opponent so that they can punish a projectile. Time your jump-ins so that you can capitalize on the opponents poorly timed projectiles. Also, blocking is also a good idea because when you block projectiles or any other special moves for that matter, your character is the one building meter. Some special moves can ignore the properties of a projectile as well. You can also roll through projectiles but be careful of meaty attacks and throws. Roll carefully through the projectile and cautiously advance towards your opponent.

Q: Are there any disadvantages to using Guard Cancel Rolls and Guard Cancel CD attacks? I feel like using those are the only way to escape offensive pressure.

A: Relying on them to always get you out of offensive pressure is certainly a disadvantage. Some characters can make better use of that meter with an EX/DM that can beat out an opponent's attack. GCAB/rolls or GCCD/blowbacks should be a last resort, when your character has no other solution, and usually trapped in the corner.

Q: "I can't use DP's on wake up because my opponent keeps hitting me during the input. How am I supposed to get out of offensive pressure properly on wake up?"

A: The reversal window this game is not very huge at all. Better options for escaping pressure on wake is to perform a well timed roll, use a standing normal, block, use a guard cancel roll, or utilize a guard cancel blowback. Recognize the situation so that you can get out of pressure safely and twist the match your favor. Also keep in mind that the majority of regular DP's/Flash Kick anti-airs or reversals have 4~5 frame start up. Most EX anti-airs and/or reversals will have 3 or less start up.

Q:"Which characters of KOFXIII have auto guard capabilities with their moves?"

A: Shen (st.C), EX Kyo (his DP, and all versions of his rekkas), Ralf, Maxima, Clark, and Raiden

Q:"My opponent keeps rushing me down and pressuring me with so many mix ups. How do I defend myself?"

A:Be sure to block the opponents attacks accordingly. If you are cornered, carefully take initiative to get out of the corner. Look for ways out. If the opponent is attempting a jump in, you can roll out of the corner. You may also jump over the over the opponent if you anticipate them pressuring you on the ground. The best way to get out of high pressure in the corner is to Guard Cancel Roll out of the way, because there will be no risks to take and you will not have to worry about the opponent hurting you during your roll recovery or throwing you. Also keep in mind that standing normals can beat out jumping normal moves, jumping normal moves can beat low normal moves, and low normal moves beat out standing normal moves. You can use normal moves to counter act the opponents movements. A well timed special move or Desperation move can help you too.

Q: "What are you supposed to do when you are being pressured after a knockdown?"

A: You can roll on wake-up to avoid mix ups, jump-ins, and cross-ups. If the opponent is going for a deep jump-in however or a meaty attack, it is best to block and wait to counter act. You can also use a anti-air (preferably a standing normal anti-air) to beat out jumping normal moves. (NOTE: Special moves/Super moves with invincibility or high priority are also acceptable but they usually not the safest options, sense the reversal windows in this game are not particularly huge).

Q: What's the best way to learn how to deal with certain match-up's I'm having trouble with?

A: Learn about the character you're having problems with. Play with said character in practice. Learn all of their moves, what their normals can do. Take advantage of the record/playback move function in practice, see what can be done on a move-to-move basis (how this projectile reacts to this counter, can this EX whiff or overpower a certain special, etc). Makes yomi a lot easier if you're fighting a character you know how to play with. And also, look for footage of those characters on YT or somewhere, preferably at high-level; chances are you'll notice a common attack pattern, and therefore can know how to block or react to it.

General Game Play Information

Q:"What characters are good for beginners to utilize?"

A: The characters that will teach people the fundamentals of the game for beginners would be Andy, Terry, Shen, Takuma, Billy, Ralf, and Claw Iori.

Q:"How do you unlock Billy and Saiki?"

A:You must play through the Arcade mode and defeat them once.

Q:"Are EX Kyo, EX Iori, and EX Mr.Karate just powerful versions of the characters or are they different?"

A: All DLC characters play differently from their counterparts but they are not overpowered as they are balanced by the games standards.

Q: I have no one to play with locally. Can I play this only online?

A: You can play this online, but it probably won't be consistent or offline perfect. If you find people online that you have good connections with, add them to your friends list. If you can, make sure your connection strength is as strong as possible with a wired connection, limiting any internet use (especially Skype), not using the voice option during playing. It's not completely unplayable, but it's not as optimal as we wanted it to be.

Q: "Is it possible to play this solo or does it have to be played with 3 team characters?"

A: There are options for playing solo characters. However, by arcade, online, or offline tournament game play standards, it is necessary to learn at least three characters as it is a part of KOF's tradition of 3v3 matches.

Q: "Does team order matter in KOFXIII?"

A: If the player is new to KOFXIII or the series in general, then no, team order is not going to matter. If the player has a great familiarization with the games fundamentals then yes, in a manner of speaking, it does but not in the same way as it would with games like UMVC3 for example. However, the game will support the player if they have unique orders for there teams, but what needs to be understood is that all characters can play different roles, depending on what position they are in and what the players preferences are. All characters benefit well off of meter, thus increasing the players chance of winning and/or making a comeback in a match. Meter management plays a huge role when it comes to team order arrangement, especially on mid/high level game play. The first characters can have three super meter maximum. The secondary characters can have four meter maximum. The third character can have five. The characters in general can play different roles on a team, some better than others but they can easily suit the players abilities and preferences. Also, when you select your order before the match, you can adjust your team according to your opponents team to combat against specific match ups. As the player develops their team, they can develop strategies behind their team as well so that they can play different roles accordingly. The following roles that the characters can play can be meter builders, batteries/annoyance, zoners, utility, pure offense (with or without meter), pure defense/turtle, keep away, etc. There are so many factors to consider, but KOFXIII's system is lenient enough to support the players creativity. The player can easily form a team however they wish but the player needs to understand what their characters are capable of (How easily they build meter, damage output with meter, damage output without meter, overall game play, movement, timing, situation, positioning, and strategies). In mid/high level play, team order does matter, depending on how well the player manages their meter and how they adapt during game play.

Q:"Does KOFXIII have any infinite combos to speak of?"

A: Yes, but not very many at all. They are insanely difficult to do and require lots of practice and an extreme amount of dexterity (i.e. EX Iori rekka loops, Benimaru's lightning loops, etc).

Q:"Are there Touch Of Death combos in KOFXIII?"

A: A majority of the characters in this game have combos that can do anywhere from 70% to 100%, depending on how much meter they possess at the moment and how well the player can execute their combos. Some characters have very damaging combos that aren't very practical or too difficult to do in a real match. With a 2 bar HD combo, every character will be able to do a little more than 700 damage if they start with cl.C or jumping C.

Q: Every round is 60 seconds right?

A: Sorta. 60 ticks. The timer isn't in real-time seconds, which is way it appears to countdown slowly. Every 60 second match is around 90 real-time seconds.

Q: "How do match ups work in KOFXIII? What about top tiers and low tiers?"

The game is very well balanced. While there are tiers available for this game, the gaps between the characters are easily negligible - indirectly making this game similar to TTT2 or VF in a manner of speaking. The game rewards the players for understanding the fundamentals, neutral game, and good decision making.

Q: "How does the meter system of KOFXIII work when you play a match?"

A: The characters can build meter by attacking the opponent successfully, utilizing (and sometimes whiffing) specific special moves, blocking special moves, and receiving hits. The amount of meter the character can possess is dependent on the characters current team position. The player chooses three characters to play. The character in the first position can possess 3 meter stock. The secondary character is allowed to have 4 meter stocks. The third character is allowed to have 5 meter stocks. The super meter in this game allows players to do Guard Cancel Roll, Guard Cancel Blowback, EX Moves, and Super Moves(Desperation Moves). All of the characters on a team will also have access to drive meter, which will have two segments. The drive meter allows players to conduct drive cancels. A drive cancel always cost one bar. If the drive meter is full, the character can either perform up to two drive cancels, or the character can go into Hyper Drive mode. Last, the character conduct a Neo Max by having 3 meter stocked and a full drive meter. Always keep in mind that the meter system in this game plays an important role and provides character with more offensive and defensive maneuvers. Be careful of how you arrange your characters when you select your character team positioning.

The King of Fighters XIII

FAQControlsMovementOffenseDefenseMeters and GaugesHitboxesFrame Data


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