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Step Your Game Up with EG|Justin Wong

Step Up Your Game: Chapter 13 - Super Street Fighter 4 Arcade Edition v2012 tier list

Written by Justin Wong
May 3, 2013 at 8:55 p.m. PDT
Hey everyone, these next few articles will be interesting. I will be providing my opinion on how each of the characters in Super Street Fighter 4 Arcade Edition v2012 rank, before branching into other games.

I'll give an overview of what their pros and cons are, and who would be a good partner if you need a secondary character.

I will have a grade system running from S+, S, S-, A+, A, A- B+, B, B- and C, with S+ being highest and C being lowest.


Grade: S+

Pros: Amazing walk speed, amazing pressure. Many ways to open people up with Demon Flip Dive Kick or Palm or command throw. His sweep gives him so many options, and it's very hard to punish his sweep on block or whiff. Good space control with his air fireball. Able to option select his DP on hit or block with FADC.

Cons: Low health, has trouble with characters that can pressure well and able to punish his teleport on wakeup.

Partner: Fei Long.


Grade: S

Pros: Amazing pressure after a Cannon Drill combo, fast walk speed, good normals with st.MK and st.HK. EX Cannon Strike amazing on block and hit. Can maximize damage off it. Can do it very low to the ground to ensure crouch tech punishes. Her frame traps are amazing and can lead into 300+ damage combos which also lead into setups. Her back throw gives her so much momentum and many types of mixups to choose from.

Cons: Uses a lot of meter for EX Cannon Strike, her throw range is very short, has trouble with high footsie character and relies on getting the knockdown too much.

Partner: Akuma.

Fei Long

Grade: S

Pros: Able to get opponent to the corner once they're hit by Rekkas, able to throw rekkas out like a poke, good mid range normals such as cr.MP, cr.HP, and st.HP. Good anti air with his DP and st.HK. Also has a tick throw setup with his command throw which is hard to avoid. EX Rekka can be thrown out to continue pressure.

Cons: Has a hard time against charge characters.

Partner: Yun.


Grade: S

Pros: Very fast normals with crouching light punch, crouching heavy punch and light kick version of Hurricane Kick armor breaks and able to combo after. Easy damage and easy hit confirms which leads into devastating setups in the corner.

Cons: Loses to super defensive safe characters which forces Sakura to take heavy risks, which possibly makes her lose health during the process.

Partner: Balrog, Guile, Seth, Akuma.


Grade: S

Pros: High stun character, large variety of moves such as his Dragon Punch, Tanden Engine, Spinning Pile Driver, which all lead into a 50/50 mixup. Very strong pressure with his normals and amazing Ultra 1 and 2. Amazing jump arc and able to wall jump from one screen to another.

Cons: Low life, must play very risky in order to make use of the character heavy mixup tools.

Partner: Cammy, Yun, C. Viper.


Grade: S-

Pros: Jaguar Kicks control a lot of the screen due to their hit box. Very hard to punish because of how fast it comes out. Good pokes with st.HK, and cr.HK. Able to bully people with his back throw into his ambiguous cross up MK. Good DP, which allows him to continue the pressure. His walk speed is very fast and he has a good throw range. Both ultras are very reliable.

Cons: Very hard to deal with characters that are able to bully Adon in the corner such as Fei Long, M. Bison, etc. Health is below average.

Partner: Yun.

C. Viper

Grade: S-

Pros: Strong rushdown, able to super jump cancel almost all her ground normals into a Super Jump Flame Kick which can result in a pressure situation or a cross up. Able to continue momentum of her mixup game. Can also combo Ultra 1 without using meter due to super jump cancel.

Cons: Low life, must take risks with her HP Thunder Knuckle due to other vortex characters. No good mid range normal to compete with footsies. Requires too much meter to be dangerous.

Partner: Seth, Fei long, Sagat.


Grade: S-

Pros: Strong mixup character, many setups after knockdown, amazing close range normals and active normals such as crouching medium punch and able to combo into Ultra due to super jump cancels after normals.

Cons: Wake up option limited to EX DP, no good footsies buttons and loses to other strong vortex characters.

Partner: Balrog, Cammy, Yun.


Grade: S-

Pros: Very good pressure and rushdown. Has a dive kick with a command throw which all leads into the same combo and can continue vortex pressure. Also Gene-jin Super really powerful for a good commanding lead in the 3rd round.

Cons: Very risky character since his DP is not FADCable, wake up isn't as strong because of that.

Partner: Guile, Fei Long, Sagat.


Grade: A+

Pros: Strong rushdown due to his step kick dash forward pressure. Able to continue relentless pressure. Very strong character that easily gets meter and able to use his meter for any situation.

Cons: Loses to characters who can rush down better, like with Dive Kick pressure. Throwing on his wake up takes away all his good ex wake up options such as command throw, Rekka and Roll.

Partner: Makoto, Ibuki, Sagat.


Grade: A+

Pros: Strong mix ups after back throw, forward throw and even the hard knockdown after Waterfall Kick. Multi use of normals due to 2 stances and having a super increases the chances of winning due to Super into Ultra. Nice mid range normal with standing medium kick into his Hundred Hand Slaps.

Cons: Very hard to use in terms of execution, for Hundred Hand Slaps and finishing off with the untechable Waterfall Kicks. Also easy to rush down and wake up options not too strong.

Partner: Yun, M. Bison, Fei Long.


Grade: A+

Pros: High damage/high stun. Gets opponent to corner very easily with EX Hayate. Able to turn the match into her favor very easily. Able to combo after her command throw and standing medium punch is good because of the active frames.

Cons: Very risky character because she is forced to advance forward. Not an amazing amount of good wake up options to use.

Partner: Fei Long, Gouken, M. Bison.


Grade: A+

Pros: Amazing fireball game, good mid range normals such as crouching medium kick and crouching heavy kick. Good frame traps with crouching medium punch. Reliable Dragon Punch and many ways to combo into ultra. One of the best characters in the game that can use meter in any way.

Cons: Loses to character with better defensive tools and normals such as Dhalsim, Guile, Adon, Rose, etc. Also his mix ups are not as strong compared to other strong mix up characters.

Partner(s): Cammy, Yun, Fei Long, Adon


Grade: A+

Pros: Strong rushdown pressure with dive kick, able to close the gap with his D/F+MK. Good mid range sweep to stop people from trying to escape against dive kick pressure. Able to combo his Ultra 1 in many situations. EX Messiah Kick is a very good tool to close out the round by chip and a good wake up attack.

Cons: Cannot escape wake ups without meter, EX Messiah Kick is a double edge sword where it can go over an opponent's head and you get a full punish. Must take a lot of risk to continue his pressure and can easily get zoned out by a good amount of characters in the game.

Partner: Fei Long, Adon, Sagat.


Grade: A

Pros: Very strong fireball game, high damage output. Amazing mid range crouching heavy kick. Great counter/ex counter for wake ups and back throw is useful to combo into ultra.

Cons: Lack of mid range combos, heavy meter use for a lot of his damage and tools. Armor breaks beats counters.

Partner: Akuma, Guile, Zangief.


Grade: A

Pros: Good pressure when using the sequence of cr.LK x2 into st.MP into either Bushin Izuna Otoshi Elbow Drop or Run command and stopping the run at the fastest frame to continue pressure. Also good anti air with cr.MP or EX Hurricane Kick. Able to land very tricky cross ups or non cross ups with jump MK or Elbow drop.

Cons: Very risky wake up game with EX Hurricane Kick, Ultra combos does very low damage due to many normals connecting before actually landing the first hit of the ultra. And not many good normals to play footsies with.

Partner: Rufus, Guile.


Grade: A

Pros: Really good normal dash, different type of wake up options such as EX Pinwheel, Counters, and backdash. Good pressure with her Fireball charge and an amazing kara throw. Ultra 1 is one of the best ultras in the game.

Cons: Low life, no flow chart pressure for her, which requires Juri players to work a lot harder for specific combos and setups.

Partner: Zangief, Akuma, M. Bison

M. Bison

Grade: A
Pros: Very strong pressure with his crouching light kick into Scissor Kick. Able to keep the opponent in the corner due to how safe the light kick Scissor Kick is. Good normals such as standing medium kick and standing heavy kick. Many wake up options such as EX Psycho crusher, EX Devil's Reverse. EX Scissor Kick and Teleport. Able to keep a lead.

Cons: Loses to stronger defensive character and hard to stop vortex characters from taking away his charge.

Partner: Rufus, Sagat, Gouken, Akuma


Grade: A

Pros: Very good pressure normals which leads into amazing combos. Good mixups after a knockdown and good mid range normals such as standing heavy punch or forward + medium kick.

Cons: No mid range normals that you can combo into a special move and not able to FADC his Dragon punch on block.

Partner: Akuma, Evil Ryu, Sagat.


Grade: A-

Pros: Good mid range pokes with cr.HK and st.HK, can chip with his Dash Punch, good counter attacking with the use of EX Dash Punches. Very good counter poking with his cr.LP, good anti air normals with cr.HP and st.MP. Very hard to poke with fireballs due to Turn Punch or when Balrog has super meter.

Cons: Can easily get mixed up once knocked down, cannot handle cross up pressure and able to run away easily and make Balrog lose his charge which takes away his specials, supers and ultra.

Partner: Fei Long, Akuma, Guile.


Grade: A-

Pros: Good anti air button with Back+MP. Has a good far poke with st.HK, able to put a lot of frame trap pressure which leads into damaging combos. Very good mixup with using empty jump EX Zonk knuckle. Very fast cr.MP to avoid tick throw setups.

Cons: Relies too much on frame traps, which allows people to stand tech and grab his normals. Very slow walk speed. Hard to bait out stand techs and wake up game is not amazing without using EX Zonk FADC.


Grade: A-

Pros: Good keep away tools with his long limbs. Really good anti air options. Usually able to control the match in the first round since both parties start with no meter.

Cons: No good wake up option, not a combo character, which hurts his damage, and he gets rushed down very easily against characters with strong pressure.

Partner: Seth, Zangief, Fei Long.


Grade: A-

Pros: Very little recovery on his fireball, good mid range normals with st.HK, st.HP. and cr.MK. Really good anti air normals like cr.HP, Far st.MK. Amazing air throw range and will always hold the lead in the beginning of the game.

Cons: Not much universal combo capabilities. Hard to make a comeback when down on life. Once knocked down, his wake up game can easily be baited and must block well all the time.

Partner: Akuma, Cammy.


Grade A-

Pros: Very good fireball game and keep away pressure. Good mid range normal with st.LK, st.MK and st.HK. Also EX Tiger Knee is a good move to get away from the corner and its safe on block. Able to make EX Tiger Knee cross up into ultra. Both ultras are very useful for match up preference.

Cons: Dragon Punch doesn't do enough damage, which makes characters disrespect his fireball game, which results in a jump in. Ultra 1 doesn't juggle well in the corner and character is very tall which makes Sagat players have a difficult time blocking.

Partner: Akuma, C. Viper, Cammy.


Grade: A-

Pros: Massive range on LP version of SPD, able to push opponent in the corner due to intimidation with his st.MP and able to buffer cr.LP into EX Green Hand from really far away. Also his Flying Power Bomb gives him amazing okizeme once landed. Lariat is a very easy anti air to use, and both his ultras are very scary against anyone.

Cons: Gets lamed out by good fireball characters like Sagat, Akuma, Dhalsim, etc. Must take a lot of risk after knocking an opponent down. Not easy to land both his ultras since it must be good reads.

Partner: M. Bison, Cammy, Hakan.


Grade: B+

Pros: Good walk speed, able to annoy opponents with his good normals and LP Blanka Ball. Very hard to punish Blanka's specials. Electricity is very good to use to keep pressure on the opponent. Very good focus attack which allows him to lean back and punish whiffed mid range normals. Has 2 good Ultras to use to win the round when opponent is low on health.

Cons: Not a very strong mixup character. Relies on having meter for his EX Rainbow Ball and his EX Upball. Really hard to combo into his ultra for massive damage boost during mid game.

Partner: E. Honda, Fei Long.


Grade: B+

Pros: Very mobile with forward + medium kick, amazing kara throw, amazing Dragon Punch, and every time you end a combo you can always start a mixup.

Cons: Damage is not too high, mixups are pretty easy to escape, frame traps are not as strong and landing a full damage ultra is not too consistent. Also his block strings into fireball are at times not true block strings.

Partner(s): Akuma, Fei Long, Sakura.

E. Honda

Grade: B+

Pros: High damage output, good jump in with jumping medium punch, amazing standing low hitting move with standing heavy kick, easy chip damage with Hundred Hand Slaps, Super and Ultra goes through fireballs and having a command throw is always good.

Cons: Needs meter most of the time to get away from wake ups and cross ups. Close range normals are not as strong and fast for poking. No good knockdown normal button and hard to regain the lead when down on life.

Partner(s): Guile, Akuma, C. Viper.

El Fuerte

Grade: B+

Pros: Most free movement in the game due to his run command. Able to continue pressure with Run Stop command into a normal and able to wash, rinse and repeat. 50/50 mixups during run command such as Tostada Press which must be blocking high or Fajita Buster which must be avoided by blocking low. Good anti air with his EX Guacamole Leg Throw and able to combo after his overhead F+MK into more pressure. Good ultras which stops the opponent from jumping back or jumping.

Cons: No good normals to poke with. His 50/50 mixups do very little damage which allows the opponent to punish very hard if they guess right. Very poor wake up game and must spend meter. Poor backdash and becomes very predictable once on the defensive.

Partner: Yun, Balrog.


Grade: B+

Pros: Good normals such as her slide, cr.HK, cr.MP, st.HK. Able to absorb fireballs and build a lot of meter. Soul Spiral very useful offensive tool. Good anti air with Soul throw or cr.HP. Can rush down and bait throw tech and crouch tech with neutral st.MK. Good backdash.

Cons: Gets rushed down, not many wake up options and needs meter to do EX Soul Spiral and Soul Throw and both are unsafe. Her offense becomes very predictable since it mainly ends with Soul Spiral.

Partner: Dhalsim, Akuma.


Grade: B+

Pros: Able to control pressure with his cr.LK into Mantis Slashes. Not much pushback. Able to fit a lot of mixups with his command throw. Good reliable anti air and also FADCable.

Cons: Divekick height restriction and also not good frame advantage. Doesn't have a reliable universal cross up which hurts his mixup game after a knockdown. Very weak in damage in terms of bread and butter combos.

Partner: Yun, Fei Long, Sagat.

Dee Jay

Grade: B

Pros: Good fireball, Really hard to jump on him due to his EX Jackknife Maximum. Good mid range pokes with st.HK and has a way to change his jump trajectory with Jump Down + Light Kick.

Cons: Loses to characters with better mid range buttons, doesn't really have comeback potential, really hard to land his ultra 1 and 2.

Partner: Guile, Ryu, Fei Long


Grade: B

Pros: Very strong close up normals leading into amazing pressure with his forward + medium kick. His Ducking move goes under fireballs and ability to keep up pressure and focus attack is amazing.

Cons: His Jet upper is only good when its EX, his cross counter is not reliable to use because of the recovery and he gets lamed out by defensive characters.

Partner: Guile, Zangief, M. Bison, Fei Long

Evil Ryu

Grade: B

Pros: High damage, cr.MK into fireball is a true block string, good combo extension with the use of his Axe Kick. Good forward dash and focus attack which leads into good pressure.

Cons: Low health character. Very linear and relies solely on cr.MK into fireball into FADC combo. Teleport is very punishable and his DP is not as strong compared to the other Shotos in the game.


Grade: B

Pros: Oiled mode is extremely dangerous. Good 50/50 setups with both his command throws. Can focus cancel and punish many things which are not meant to be punished. Can stack oil which makes his pressure last a lot longer.

Cons: Relies solely on Oiled up Hakan. When not oiled, many of his normals become no where near as good, and his range on command throws becomes a lot less. Gets rushed down after the oil has ran out of time.

Partner: Ryu, Balrog, Akuma.


Grade: B-

Pros: Good normals such as standing medium punch, crouching heavy kick, standing heavy kick and standing heavy punch. Amazing Super to punish many blocked normals which are normally not punishable.

Cons: Ultra 1 not viable on many characters and Ultra 2 damage is too low. Her anti airs are not reliable and requires too much concentration on knowing which one to pick. Comeback potential is too weak and EX Spinning Bird Kick is not as good as a wake up.

Partner: Balrog, Cammy, Adon

T. Hawk

Grade: B-

Pros: Good setups after landing his command throw. Good pokes with st.HK, st.MK, and cr.MP. Able to use EX Condor Spire to go through fireballs and has the most health in the game.

Cons: Very hard to get in, walk speed is very slow. His wake up game is not as strong. Has a hard time dealing with characters with pokes that can keep him at bay. Must take a lot of risks.

Partner: Adon, Blanka, E. Honda.


Grade: B-

Pros: Good pokes with cr.MK, cr.MP, and st.MK. Amazing Kara throw range and can catch people from jumping back with his EX Wall Dive.

Cons: No reliable anti air, must predict a lot when an opponent is jumping. No good way to land safe chip damage, not a very strong mixup character, no good wake up reversals, both ultras are very hard to combo.

Partner: Rufus, M. Bison, Rose.


Grade: C

Pros: Dragon Punch is very strong and Dan Kicks are very good at pressuring the opponent. Able to cancel his Super Taunt into Ultra which leads into potential useful combo possibilities.

Cons: Very slow normals, not a reliable fireball, hard to start pressure and very weak in terms of making a comeback.

Partner: Akuma, Ryu, Adon, Rose.

Create your own “Wong Factor” comebacks

Justin Wong is a member of Evil Geniuses, you can find more information about this organization at


Gurpwnder said on April 29, 2013 at 11:53 p.m.

I like the fact that he recognized Dan's potential (hell, he beat Air's Ryu using Dan), but I feel that Dan's come a long way, and his normals have improved DRAMATICALLY from Super to AE2012. While he may be C tier, compared to everyone else above him in B or higher, I still feel that he's very close to the rest of the pack. He's got the toolset to win, he just lacks the dirt that many other characters possess.

Biggz124 said on April 29, 2013 at 11:54 p.m.

whelp, justin is right. we should all go home, Chris G will own us all with Sakura.

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