Sean Street Fighter 3 Third Strike Strategy Guide and Moves

Guide last updated on
August 22, 2011 at 11:36 p.m. PDT

Sean Street Fighter 3 Third Strike Character Guide

Character Overview
While Sean is listed last in the tier rankings for Street Fighter 3 Third Strike he can still show some capability in his moveset if you are good at reading the opponent.

Capcom laid down massive nerfs on Sean due to his power in 2nd Impact, and it really shows with how badly his move properties were altered. Still, every character in Third Strike has enough juice to tackle the competition and Sean is no exception.

Sean can still deal damage, and has some unique tools such as his far range overhead and fake charging tackles to catch opponents off guard. Most Sean players tend to play a very extreme mid range game where Sean's standing Hard Punch will hit the opponent if activated.

+ Has strong one-off attacks.
+ Nice range on shoto normals.
+ Good range on overhead normal and special attacks.
+ Great footspeed and a fast dash.
+ Can set up some nice tricks with his Taunt, which only a few characters can do.

- Doesn't have really any safe approaches.
- Comboing into his special moves outside of jump-ins is extremely hard.
- Essentially everything that Sean does, Ken, Ryu and Akuma can do better.
- Dragon Punch is not good at intercepting attacks on the ground.
- His Roll is extremely useless for escapes or approaches.

Notable Normal Moves and Unique Attacks

Sean Pachiki
A super long range double-hitting overhead attack. The startup is a bit slow but if you have offensive momentum then this can definitely function as a surprise attack.

Rolling Sobat
A hop attack that knocks opponents backwards. You can use it to advance forward without dashing, though using this strategy a lot is not recommended.
Anti Air Moves (Standing Hard Kick or Crouching Hard Punch)
When your opponent jumps and is above and a decent ways in front of you, use Standing Hard Kick as an anti-air. If they're above, but close up, Crouching Hard Punch will also work.

Standing Medium Kick
Sean's best poke. He extends his leg out fast and moves closer to the opponent at the same time.

Jumping Medium Kick (Cross Up)
Sean's main cross up attack.

Crouching Medium Kick
The shoto crouching Medium Kick is a great normal in Third Strike. This can be canceled and comboed into other Special Moves and Super Arts.

Far Standing Hard Punch
Sean does a downward punch that has a lot of range. It's a good move to use after a parry when you're out of range for a better punishment option.

Straight (Universal Overhead)

Basketball (Taunt)
Sean shoots a jump shot at the opponent. It's a bit slow but it's possible to use after a knockdown to force the opponent to block.
Special Moves
Dragon Smash (Shoryuken)


Sean's anti-air special move. If you want to combo into this you have to make sure the opponent is directly in front of you, otherwise it will miss.

The Light Dragon Smash is the fastest, so if you need to perform a risky counter it's best to use this version.

EX Version: Sean's two-hit uppercut. Has a bit more startup invincibility and is less likely to whiff.

Tornado (Hurricane Kicks)


This swinging kick attack is Sean’s best move to combo into. Light Kick has the fastest start up time, so it's the only one that connects after a Crouching Medium Kick. But, you can connect a Medium Kick Tornado after a Close Standing Hard Punch.

This attack is not safe on block against fast Super moves or Light Punches or Kicks. It's also not difficult for a good player to red parry the followup attacks to this move so you're not going to want to use it outside of combos.

EX Version: This has a faster start up time than Sean's regular Tornado and should combo after any single strike that can be canceled. It's also the safest on block and is an okay chip option against characters without fast moves.

Overhead Turn Kick (Ryuubi Kyaku)
EX (3 hits)


Sean's special overhead attack. If you space the move correctly it can be really hard to punish and adds an element to Sean's mixup game. The button pressed determines the distance traveled.

Like any special move, you're going to want to really be unpredictable with this move due to its slow startup. You don't want it to turn into parry bait. Also keep a lookout for fast supers that can punish this move.

EX Version: Spending EX causes the overhead kick to home in on the opponent. If it catches an opponent trying to jump away, it does a lot more damage. It's also more safe on block than the regular flip kick.

Sean Roll
Sean's roll attack is similar to a moving crouch. It will duck under most projectiles and high moves, but it has no invincibility whatsoever.

This move functions well as an extremely unpredictable surprise attack or escape, but outside of that you're going to want to avoid this move. This especially applies against someone familiar with Sean as a character.

or  (Hold for tackle animation)
Sean Tackle


Sean’s most powerful but risky move. He dashes towards the opponent in a crouching state attempting to tackle them. This hits low, but you need to hold the punch button(s) you pressed to get the tackle to come out.

Letting up off the button will simply make Sean leap forward without attacking, which can be used to bait parry attempts or just move forward into throw range.

This move is incredibly easy to punish on block if you decide to go for the tackle, so most players just decide to just use this move for fakes. It's possible to combo into this move, but the knockdown situation it gives you is not so good.

EX Version: The only difference the EX version offers is that it travels faster and does more damage.

Super Arts

Super Art 1 — Hadou Bursts
EX Moves

This Super starts up fast, but the travel speed is the fastest of any projectile super in the game. It gives Sean three stocks of Super which is a great advantage over other characters' supers as it gives him more chances at higher damage output. It also gives Sean the most EX meter to use.

Despite the projectile's one-hit status, it has high durability and will blow through any standard projectile. Due to its range, it's also easy to combo into this Super Art at any distance. What's really noteworthy about this attack is the travel speed though.

    (Mash for more damage)
Super Art 2 — Shoryu Cannon
EX Moves

Sean's most oft-picked Super Art due to the damage and speed it starts up in. Shoryu Cannon starts up in one frame (second fastest startup speed for a Super in the game) and you can mash on all the punch buttons to get a lot of damage off this Super.

Sean has a lot of trouble with safely getting big damage, and this Super helps close that problem gap. It also offers almost as much EX meter as SA1, so the bigger damage output and more consistent damage choices makes this the number one choice for Sean.

Super Art 3 — Hyper Tornado
EX Moves

Given that this Super Art offers the least EX meter to use, and how long it takes Sean to build it up through the course of normal gameplay, most players stick with SA1 or SA2. Both of those Supers offer them more chances to get higher damage in combos.

Target Combos
Target Combo 1
You can link into Supers after the standing Hard Kick lands.
Target Combo 2
Doesn't combo. Still a nice trick into an overhead attack.
Important note: Not every possible combo is listed here.

cl.MP, HK
cl.MP xx HP Dragon Smash
cl.MP xx LK Tornado

cl.HP xx HP/EX Dragon Smash
cl.HP xx LK/MK Tornado

cr.MK xx Dragon Smash
cr.MK xx LK Tornado

jf.MK, cr.MK xx LK Tornado
jf.HP, cr.HP xx MK Tornado
cr.LK, cr.LK xx SA1, SA2, SA3
cr.MK xx SA1, SA2, SA3

Basketball Setups
When using Sean you’re going to want to take advantage of his basketball taunt. This move may seem like just an annoying taunt at first, but if you consider the basketball as a projectile then it opens up a lot more possibilities. A slow-moving overhead projectile traveling in an arc is much more dangerous than it appears.

During the time the basketball is in the air, you can dash forward and apply a mixup on the opponent provided that the opposing character does not have a long range punish against the startup of your basketball toss. This lets you apply a high or low mixup to the opponent while they are forced to block or parry the basketball.

This setup is especially potent in the corner or after certain knockdowns where the opponent can't punish your taunt. Find the right situations to lock opponents down with the basketball, because it's one of Sean's few safe options.

When Close

Setup into Tackle: After the ball is shot do a Light Punch Sean Tackle. It tackles instantly, but the opponent can jump, block or parry it as well. So be aware of this.

Setup into Fake Tackle into Grab: This is probably one of your most useful setups. Hold the tackle right when you get to the peak of the dash. The opponent is naturally going to be expecting a tackle. Confuse him and grab him.

Setup into Light Kick Overhead Turn Kick (Ryuubi Kyaku): Use this after the opponent has shown that they're going to block low after a ball is thrown to be ready for a tackle. Start up the kick right after the ball is shot, and use an EX Turn Kick if you feel you need a safer on block move or more chip damage.

Sean's Colors
Sean's colors in Street Fighter 3 Third Strike
Other Resources and Credit
You can find more information about playing Sean on the Third Strike section of the forums
Guide by Renynoise, edited by Nyoro.


Virtua_Kazama said on March 23, 2011 at 9:41 p.m.

It's a shame that all of Sean's moves are punishable. At least he is very defensive.

Kijui said on March 23, 2011 at 10:40 p.m.

Hell yeah, my main finally got a buff on his guide (Oddly enough, Dan is my initial main in other games)

Ex_Ein said on March 23, 2011 at 10:41 p.m.

Good one-off attacks + Highly punishable=High Risk high reward

yuenyun said on March 23, 2011 at 10:51 p.m.

For anyone planning to use Sean, just a couple of personal notes I'd like to mention.
-MK overhead kick has best recovery on block
-Close fierce is very good for mixups into: Sean tackle (which in itself is a mixup), forward+fierce overhead headbutt, overhead kick, light hurricane kick to throw or baits...etc
-Sean tackle >> hold for normal low hitting tackle, use normal throw, close fierce heh heh, anything really.

I guess nothing too major. One thing I do that catches people who don't pay attention is an air to air fierce or roundhouse and throw an SA1. It will hit them out of the air, only option being to parry (which isnt too hard since it's only 1 hit)

But in some ways, I think Sean is better than Ryu lol. Many will disagree with me, but I'm just speaking on a personal note since my Sean game is better than my Ryu x] But then again I main Oro.

cearbeartron said on March 24, 2011 at 3:54 a.m.

You forgot to mention that Sean has the fastest dash in the game. This can be used for some nasty throw mixups

Good Guide though, will up my sean a bit

Kuya117 said on May 17, 2011 at 8:03 p.m.

It's a shame that Sean has to be such a difficult character to win with, but I plan on sticking with him seeing as how he is one of the coolest characters in Street Fighter in my opinion.

redmask said on May 22, 2011 at 10:12 a.m.

lol. high risk high reward? no. more like high risk low reward. Without meter sean can't do anything and can be punished horribly by 90% of the cast.

raymizzie said on August 24, 2011 at 5:08 a.m.

my main has been and always will be ryu, but for 3rd strike OE its gonna be sean/elena main. ryu/alex as secondary.

frogorificmoon said on November 20, 2016 at 3:04 p.m.

As a teenager at the time I always thought Sean was black lol. His skin was extremely dark and his swagger in the Sf3 series was hella sexy!


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