What changes should Nash receive in Street Fighter 5 Season 4 to bring him back into the spotlight?

We don't need to go back to the beta days, but some changes are needed here

Posted by Dakota 'DarkHorse' Hills • November 5, 2018 at 8:08 p.m. PST

Nash was seen as one of the strongest characters in the early days of Street Fighter 5 due to his movement, options and hit-and-run style gameplay, but he paid the price for his first year of success ever since with multiple big balance changes starting in Season 2.

I have personally played Nash since the first beta period back in 2015, and while he's still the character I know best, I feel that his current tool set makes it hard for him to seal the deal in Street Fighter 5 Season 3.5.

His strengths lie in the his ability to play some zoning mixed in with some rush down as a jack-of-all-trades type of fighter, but his problems lie in the fact that he is not the best at any particular facet of play style and that he lacks explosive comeback potential that higher tier characters currently have with V-Triggers.

Characters like Guile, Menat and Sagat are much better at playing the zoning game than Nash, and Cammy and Rashid are better at getting in putting their opponents under relentless pressure. This has seemingly made most pros and higher ranking players move away from Nash with only RB|Bonchan still using him as one of his three current mains.

Nash is still the around the 14th most popular character online this year and in the exact middle of our EventHubs tier list, but it's a far cry from when he was the fourth most popular character at this time during Season 1 — though the argument could be made that having a much smaller roster also skews those statistics.

The recent input lag reduction also does Nash no favors with his signature play style, so he'll likely need to be sped up by a few frames on certain moves to at least keep up with where he is now. Let's dive into what changes I feel could make Nash more of a threat in Season 4.

The boy needs defense

Now that we're getting into specifics, I'll preface this by saying that I don't think that Nash should receive every change listed here together or he might become a bit broken. Instead, these should be treated as individual changes which could improve the character if two or four are implemented in Season 4.

One of Nash's biggest weaknesses at the current moment is that he has no good way to get out of a sticky situation where he is getting pressured and turn the tables back in his favor. He has no three-frame normal or special, and he has no invincible reversal.

All of Nash's grounded light attacks have four frames of start up which is decent, but I would turn his crouching light punch into a three-frame normal. This would give Nash a slightly better chance to find an opening against an opponent that has forced their way in. As a trade-off, perhaps some of his combo options could be removed from the light punch unless it's a counter hit.

Something I've wanted since the beta days of Street Fighter 5 was to see EX-Sonic Scythe become an invincible reversal which could also create some space between himself and whom he's fighting, but it would also leave him very open if it were to be missed or blocked and make it open to Crush Counters. It's a double-edged sword though it's still something I feel could be beneficial to the character overall.

His V-Trigger 1 was slowed from two frames of start up to four frames after Season 1, and I'd like to see that reverted back to its quicker start up since the lag reduction update will help the opposition continue to sniff out and block his teleport mix ups better.

The V-Triggers aren't alright

Nash's V-Trigger 1 was one of his strengths in Season 1 where he could mix up and punish characters from full screen, but over two years of match up experience has taught players how to deal with Nash's setups which makes it more of a detriment now.

It's also a one-shot-and-it's-gone trigger which are generally not very good in Street Fighter 5 with others like Vega's Rose throw and Zeku's run cancel thrown in the mix. They just can't stand up to the utility that other two-bar triggers offer in the game like Kolin's V-Trigger 2 or even Rashid's first trigger which is also a single use.

To make V-Trigger 1 stronger, Capcom should change the move in such a way that it will not completely drain if Nash's opponent blocks, or he misses his attack. This will give him a second opportunity to mix up the opponent or extend a combo if the first try doesn't go as planned. It could still fully drain if Nash does connect on the first attempt I feel, however.

"To make V-Trigger 1 stronger, Capcom should change the move in such a way that it will not completely drain if Nash's opponent blocks, or he misses his attack. This will give him a second opportunity to mix up the opponent or extend a combo if the first try doesn't go as planned."

His V-Trigger 2 on the other hand needs more help because it's not great. There's no discernible reason why it should be a three-bar trigger for what little it gives Nash.

The attacks it gives the character do very little damage and are difficult to confirm after the first activation. The somersault and overhead slam are also awkward to combo into one another, as it always feels finicky and inconsistent with where and how it will hit.

Nash does get some combo extensions with V-Trigger 2, but I find them pretty unintuitive to perform and still feels high cost for low reward.

V-Trigger 2 should be changed to a two-bar activation, and they can give it two uses while making the hits and effects more effective and worthwhile.

Other notes

Nash's Sonic Boom is one of the weakest normal fireballs in the game dealing only 50 damage. I'd bump that up to 60 to make it more in line with other characters and boost his zoning slightly. You could lower their stun from 100 to 80 or 70 to balance the change.

His dashes should be reverted to their Season 1 state with forward dash being faster and back dash covering more ground. It was already nerfed after Season 1, and again the input lag reduction is not going to help him in that department.

To reiterate, I don't think Nash should receive every change listed above, but I feel that even two or three of them could really help the character go beyond where he currently resides. There's no need to make him top tier, but he needs a few better tools to keep up with those who are.

What changes would you like to see for Nash in Street fighter 5 Season 4? Let me know in the comments down below.

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