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A COMPREHENSIVE GUIDE TO LION RAFALE.

Discussion in 'Lion' started by Jason Elbow, Oct 23, 2020.

  1. Jason Elbow

    Jason Elbow Well-Known Member

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    Jason ELBOW AKT
    A wealthy French playboy that uses the Chinese martial art of Mantis Fist, Lion (pronounced LAY-OWN) Rafale is a character revered (or vilified lol) for his ability to slowly and methodically peck away at your life bar with his lows that nicely compliments his decent mids. In fact Lion is considered to have some of the best lows in the game albeit risky. With some of the best side turned pressure, a situation in which he thrives in more so then the average. Lion thrives in the mid to close range. If you are looking for a explosive high damage character, err-ummmm....Lion isn't that. But you are looking for a quick character, with decent pokes, a answer for every option, strong defensive options, and the ability to dictate the match look no further!
    PROS:
    • Best lows in the game. Lows can either side turn, knockdown on NH, or start a combo
    • Forces the opponent to switch guard, opening up his mid game.
    • Side Turn is brutal and where he thrives.
    • Mixup heaven especially with his side turning mid and low, stances, parry or catch throw
    • A 11 frame Stand P.
    • His annoying factor can cause the opponent to seethe with rage hopefully clouding his judgment and making a mistake.
    • Great low crushing attacks in 8 K and 46 K (with some advantage normally +2)
    • Can very easily crush highs and lows.
    • Great CH setups.

    CONS:
    • Low damage output.(higher than Aoi but much lower than El Blaze) Forcing you to utilize his high excution combos to get the most out of a combo opportunity.
    • Can take damage like a light weight female in combos.
    • Lows, although they are very good, are often launch punishable on block and even negative on hit.
    • No 17 frame knee class launcher or equivalent.
    • Sub par punishment (mainly PK, eye poke and KK for standing and 6 PP for crouching)
    • His main launcher being a high and not usable as a punish until +16 unless you are frame perfect buffer from guard (good luck lol). And his best launcher (2_3 P) working only on CH.
    • Damage output lowers the higher the weight class.

    Standing P is your main bitch when imposing offensive and is one of your most important tools to do so. Not only is it +2 on guard (more on this later), +5 on NH, +8 on CH, but it is 11 FRAMES EXE!! That is a very big deal! He can interrupt a lot of offense that most other characters can't. He one of only four other characters that has this ability (the others being Pai, Kage and Eileen). Always use P.

    STRINGS FROM P:
    I use PK (+3), which can end in a Ex High with P (+1 on NH, +6 on CH) or into Teihozen Stance with P+K+G for a nice mixup. Also on a side note, if your opponent attempts to jab you after PK and you cancel into the stance option you still retain your sabaki properties! Keep this in mind!! You also have PPP. All hits combo and the last hit is half circular to his stomach but is -3 on NH (+3 if last hit is a CH), so only use to close out a round. You have PP4 P in which the last hit is a wopping +19 on NH and +24 ON CH!! Not much use mid screen except to hit a opponent that evades and attack with a high or mid or to set up a space dependant wall combo (more on that later). It also has the option to go into TEIHOZEN STANCE with P+K+G. Which is a decent option considering the amount of plus frames you have to work with.. There is also PPP+K the last hit is a half circular low to his back that knocks down on NH. This is sort a surprise mixup attack. You can delay the string or stop it mid way and go for a elbow. Careful as it is -19 on block so use sparingly.
    Then at last you have PP 2/8 P which is a half circular Ex High that knocksdown on NH for a combo, is plus on block (+4), and is a good mix-up tool. You can cancel that last hit with PP 2/8 PG for a feint or into a back turned mix up with PP 2/8 P4. This also works for the 46 P+KPP string. 3 P is a 16 frame mid with a follow up in P that also knocks down and combos on CH and crouch hit. You can combo with 66 KK. There's also 66 P a far reaching head collapsing mid. Good to use against people blocking his lows.

    POKES WITH KICK ATTACKS:
    KK is your 13 frame punisher which is rare being there aren't many worthwhile punishers from +13. It knocks down which can set up some good oki. 3 K is Lion side kick and my chief poke I use with Lion. It is half circular to his back, +8 on Crouch hit and CH. Although its -1 on NH it is a excellent poke to use at range. It also causes a Butt Stagger on a back dashing opponent (a distinguishing factor of a side kick). Then you have 2 K which is a half circular low to his back and is unique for being one of only three lows in the game (Eileen and Shun Di having the other another 2 K's as well) that are seemly immune to Ex Highs. It is a True Low meaning cannot be blocked standing like Ex Lows and have follow ups with K a half circular low that goes in the opposite direction from 2 K and knocks down on NH, and can Mix up into elbow. But it is very punishable on block (-18 you gonna hear this a lot with his lows!). The other follow up in K+G a full circular High that you can combo from and is only -5 on block (cd fuzzyable). If 2 K is CH then the both follow ups will combo although if this does happen always choose the K+G option as it offers more damage and better options then the K follow up. 2 K will blow up Aoi's Tenchi for heavy damage. Another notable kick attack is 4 K. This kick is a 16 frame half circular high attack to his back and has two follow ups with either P, a mid that face plants the opponent down and allows a guaranteed 66 KK. Careful as the P option is -15 on block. This option only combos on CH or as a punish. You can stance transition into TEIHOZEN with P+K+G. 6 K is a 17 frame CH that causes a Nut Collapse. Its +1 on NH and -8 on Block.

    NOTABLE P+K ATTACKS:
    P+K is a 20 frame knockdown combo starter, it is double handed so it will beat Tenchi. Great use on someone's tech roll as people tend to crouch on wake to avoid a throw attempt. 33 P+K P+G is Lion's hit throw thats great against opponents looking to block your lows. Good damage. 6 P+K is a half circular mid to his front that side turns! Pretty slow in the neutral but is best used to catch evade. The great thing about 6 P+K is that on CH, 2 P is unblockable (6 P+K is +9 on CH, being side turned is -3, so 9+3=12, 2 P is 12 frames exe so it's guaranteed). Then theres 4 P+K which can avoid certain highs and mids. It head collapses on NH and can even avoid a wake up mid kick when charged. 44 P+K also has the same property of the third attack in the PP 4P string. And also grants +19 on NH and +24 on CH. It does have short range and is really only used to abare against throw attempts and people approaching to attack. This attack can also enter TEIHOZEN STANCE. 8 P+K is a very good 15 frame half circular punisher to his back.

    NOTABLE HIGH CRUSHES:
    4 PP is a mid attack that crushes on the 1st frame. It completely avoids Highs. It also can be canceled into his Sofu Stance for a mixup but I warn you to use this very sparingly as 4 PP is negative on hit and you can be hit out the stance transition. Better for when your opponent clams up from being hit by 4 PP. 4 P+K is his best High Crush as it lowers his hurt box even underneath mids (if charged) also you can charge it to delay the attack and ensure you can avoid strings. Charging also changes the attack level from a high to a mid. Best used to avoid mid wake up kicks. 1 K is a very good high crush that mini launches on CH. In fact this is very good to use when fishing for CHs. 9/3 P+K+G can sway under highs and you can punish with PPP (knocks down and combos), P+K (a half circular combo starter ex high), and K (a low that gives +7 on hit and causes a leg collapse on CH).

    NOTABLE MID CRUSH
    The only notable attacks I could put in this category would be 4 P+K. As there arent many attacks with mid crush in FS. Attacks that are done from crouch normally have this ability. But being that Lion's 2_3 P is his counter hit launch and don't offer much advantage on hit. His isnt really worthwhile. Your better off just using P or a elbow class attack.

    NOTABLE LOW CRUSHES:
    As mentioned before, 8 KK crushes on the very first frame. That means the crush will work all the way up to -8. Great abare against low attempts. 46 K will also crush lows, but only with advantage (+2 and up). It is also the closet thing he has to a 17 frame Knee class launcher (although it executes in 19 frames). There's also 9 P, but again it needs advantage or it must be executed preemptively as it has alot of start up and can be hit out of it. Last is jump K. This must be done right after you jump on the way up and will crush a low on frame one.

    NOTABLE LOWS:
    41236 P.. This one of Lion chief low attacks. A very important tool in his game plan. It is a half circular low to his front that side turns and compliments his 6 P+K nicely. On NH its +5 (which is really +8. Remember 3+5=8), on CH its +8 (+11) but is -16 on block. Then you have 1 PP, two pesky very fast, true lows that will irritate your opponent. They are both negative even on hit (-6, -6 on NH, -5, -4 on CH respectively) punishable on block (-15, -16). So why use them? Because they are really quick, annoying and great round enders. Thats it. Lol. 2 K+G is a full circular that knocks down on NH and is punishable on block. 3 K+G functions the same as 2 K+G but with far more range. Next we have 2 P+K and 1 P+K. 1 P+K is a half circular Low to the Front and 2 P+K is a half circular low to the back. They both are negative on Hit (1 P+K is -6 on hit and 2 P+K is -3) punishable able on block (both are -15 on block). Of both of these 2 P+K is the better one. Why? It can be made safe on block if you cancel into back turn with 4. Which opens up Lion's back turn mixups (more on this later). Then you have 43 P. A true low that causes a leg collapse on NH. It low crushes highs and is a combo starter! (Keep in mind its -15 on block.)

    SIDE TURN GAME:
    We spoke about 41236 P and 6 P+K but there is another attack that side turns and thats K+G, a full circular high. K+G, like 41236 P, is +5 on NH, +8 on CH but is cd fuzzyable at -5 on block. K+G again like 41236 P grants a free PKP on side turned (PKP combos naturally on side turn). But the opponent can duck. Thats where 3 K comes in. 3 K on crouch side turned hit grants a free PKP. 3 K along with 2_36 P+K both side collapse on CH. Side turning with 41236 P automatically buffers the input for 2_36 P+K so just input 6 P+K to possibly get a Combo opportunity (opponent can't interupt this). 1 K+G P is a low string that combos on side turned, CH and whiff punishment. Its +2 on NH (+5 with side turn) and +6 on CH (+9 on side turn).
    You can create good mixups with these attacks especially if you can keep your opponent side turned. Attacks that keep your opponent side turned are: 2 P(on block too), PKP, K+G (on block too), P(on block too), 4 P+K and 41236 P. And the longer they are side turned the better.

    CATCH THROW TECH:
    43 P+G is a catch throw with alot of follow ups and grants a lot of options. It also has ALOT of range. It can grab at ranges you wouldn't think a throw would even for a catch throw. Now, the followups are: 2/8 P+G which puts Lion to the side of the opponent into a canned side throw which can't be interrupted but can be broken.
    Then you have PPP three just frame mids that grants +8 on hit. And you have K which is a low that knocks down and a combo starter. The PPP and the K are mixup where you must guess as the initial catch throw eliminates your option to evade. The K option is punishable at -15 on block. Which PPP is only -8 on block. The 2/8 option offers him access his side turned mixups if you dont do the throw.

    OKI TECH:
    Tofu Stance (6 P+K+G) is often his best oki option on wake up. The most threatening option is P+K which is a high attack and his guard breaker. P is a complimentary mid option that staggers on crouch hit (KK is the best follow up). If the opponent evades to your front, the half circular mid attack 6 P covers that direction. And if the opponent evades to your back the KK covers that direction. The first K is a half circular high. And the second K is full circular side turning attack. This string will combo on CH. Another good oki option is 8/3 P+G+K. The option P+K is a ex high half circular depending on which direction you choose with the initial stance. This is good for catching evade. The the PPP options are mid attacks that combo naturally and knocks down. The first hit also staggers on crouch hit. The K option is a good true low that offers great advantage on hit (a rarity with lows in this game). 33 P+K P+G is good to use on wake up as people tend to crouch to avoid high throws. So is 46 K. P+K is another good combo starter like 46 K.

    MEATIES:
    After combos ending with 6 PP use 46 K+G. It is from even up to +3 on block with meaty timing. If the opponent retaliates with a mid or high just PK. It simply can not be interrupted. If they 2 P just low crush with 8 KK or 46 K. After any combo ending in 66 P+K P, just 66 P+K P again. The second attack staggers on crouch hit. You can just throw as a mixup. After 2/3 K+G you meaty with 2_36 P+K and since you are actually buffering crouch you can just input 6 P+K and it works as a meaty too. On hit, you are still in range for his catch throw. On block, the push back keeps him from being attacked. After the 2 K K+G PKP CH combo you can hold 6 P and then 2 P+K for a meaty low or 3 K for a meaty mid that also hits on side turned that grants a free PKP on hit. Another meaty setup is after a bound with 43 P+K end with 4 K P+K+G which goes into Teihozen. The only meaties from Teihozen is 2 KK which hits VERY meaty and is a low combo starter, and its complement 9 P+K a mid combo starter and despite how it looks doesnt hit as meaty as the 2 KK option. Which makes it sort makes it inconsistent but still useful.

    THROWS:
    Lion's throw game, although not particularly damaging, is still very useful, mainly due to the fact that both forward and back throw both do 60. 46 P+G is a stagger throw that can provide a mix up (mainly TOFU STANCE mixups). You can also use 66 P for a head collapse combo although this tech only works on CMoney as any competent player will shake the stagger like a smart person lol.. 6 P+G is a throw that does no damage but trades places with the Opponent and gives Lion advantage. It guarantees a free 8 P+K and a PKP but this string can be ducked. 63214 P+G and 41236 P+G are his most damaging throws at 60 Dmg each providing a pretty useful 50/50. 4 P+G guarantees a free 3 P down attack.

    ALL OF THESE PLUS FRAMES...WHAT DO I DO WITH THEM?:
    First with the +2 P gives on block you should always do 6 P. Which is uninterruptable. This is with every character. The +8 that 43 P+G PPP gives i normally just 3 K. Its better to use 2_3 P for potential CH launcher but in my experience the opponent tends to evade any attack from that so a half circular is the best option.. The low from 9/3 P+K+G grants +7 on hit so 2_3 P is uninterruptable viable option. 3 P+K grants +12 on NH so just PK, but on CH it grants +16 so a free 44 K P+K launcher is guaranteed.

    PP 4 P AT THE WALL:
    If the second hit of PP 4 P string hits the wall the third hit will combo. This is a really space dependant situation. I've only gotten it after a 6 P+G throw then 3 P+K after my back was against the wall. This gave me just the right amount of space to get it. And since the 3rd hit of PP 4 P is +19 that means a 46 K is free.

    GROUNDED HIT FOR THOSE WHO DONT TECH:
    Notably after 6 PP if the opponent doesn't tech a dash 2 P will pick up the opponent off the ground for a short combo (I use 46 P+K, 6 P). After a 66 KK just do it again. If they do you are still in good shape as the second hit is delayable or you can just go for a throw or elbow.

    CH SETUPS:
    As mentioned before a 41236 P grants enough frame advantage for a side collapse with 2_36 P+K or a CH launcher with 2_3 P. With +5 6 K is a good viable option.

    Lion has a very effective defense that compliments his robust offensive. His defensive tools in any given situation can turn the tide in his favor at any moment. One of these tools is 4 P+K+G. 4 P+K+G is Lion's High Punch sabaki. Upon success, it reverses a single limbed high punch and guarantees any follow up from his TEIHOZEN STANCE, of these, the 2 KK and 9 P+K options being the best due to each leading to a combo. Having a deterent to single limbed High punch attacks is very useful (I'm looking at you Akira's GB!) as jab forms one of the cornerstones of offense in FS. Its also very useful to get out of pressure and strings that has high punches in them. Another good one is his sabaki 214 P. This sabaki works on non full circular single limbed mid kicks. It also functions as a attack that knocks down on hit, although negative on block (-8) the push back renders it basically safe. Upon a successful sabaki, it causes a gut collapse allowing you to combo the opponent. This very useful against characters like Jeffry or Goh that have a lotta reach on their mid kick attacks. Another good defensive tool against high and mid single limbs arm attacks is his P+K+G and 2 P+K+G parries. P+K+G absorbs single limbed high or mid punches and 2 P+K+G absorbs single limbed non full circular lows. Upon success you can input 2 or 8 to freely get to your opponent's side of your choice. This functions basically as a evade and your advantage is relative to what attack you parried. The difference between each one is the fact that the low parry option can parry kicks while the standing version can't. Also parrying a kick with the low parry will yield more advantage then parrying a punch. But keep in mind NEITHER PARRY WILL WORK AGAINST A ATTACK THAT IS DOUBLE HANDED/FOOTED, IS A FULL CIRCULAR, OR THAT KNOCKS DOWN OR COLLAPSES ON NH. Keep this in mind. The high parry is particularly useful against punch strings as going to the side will offer a potential side or back collapse opportunity.

    WHAT ECDC CAN DO FOR LION:
    Do to Lion's punishment being kinda poor your best option to maximize damage is to evade into his 2_36 P+K. If you are adept at ecdc then performing this isnt difficult. Ecdc is a necessity with at higher levels as its your best option from -6 to -8 when cd fuzzy isn't available. 2_36 P+K causes a side collapse on Recovery Hit (this is the same as whiff or block punishment). This leads to a very damaging combo. Typically attacks that are -15 on block that can be evaded are susceptible to this provided your execution is fast and on point.

    WHIFF PUNISHMENT FROM CROUCH/CD BACKDASH:
    The best one I use is 4 KP. Its crazy good when ducking under a high because its quick and combos on RH. 44 K P+K is also really good. 1 K+G P combos on RH and side turn and is good after a backdash (normally on a 2 P).

    A basic set of offensive attacks I find very useful with Lion would be his:
    P
    6 P
    3 P
    4 P
    41236 P
    1 PP
    43 P
    66 P
    3 K
    8 K
    2 K
    4 K
    46 K
    6 K
    9 K
    P+K
    4 P+K
    8 P+K
    6 P+K
    33 P+K P+G

    Lion's side turned game is perhaps the most dangerous in the game. He several ways of getting you in st. And is quite adept at keeping you there. Here's a few methods of taking advantage of side turn.
    Use 41236 P on NH is +5 and st gives a additional +3 (so +8 all together) for the attacker so the any sane opponent won't attack being at that severe advantage. So my so your best option is 3 K which gives a PKP string that can't be ducked under while still keeping the opponent side turned. From there you are +4 I would just elbow to be safe as you can always cd fuzzy or block/evade if you are evaded.
    Scoring a 41236 P on CH gives +8 and +3 on st (+11) so a PKP is guaranteed if they stand to block but they can duck. So here 3 K is a good option again to grants a free PKP that can't be ducked.
    So you land PKP side turn... what now? Well since you are still st 1 K+G P is a great low option for damage that grants +5. After that I would just catch throw or normal throw.
    Then there is 6 P+K his side turning mid compliment to 41236 P. On NH its +5 and (+8 with ST) so it grants a nice chunk of advantage. But on CH is where it really shines as it gives a free unblockable 2 P (CH 6 P+K is +9 and ST is +3 for the attacker so 9 + 3=12). Which gives +7 on NH and +10 on CH (free throw attempt) while keeping the opponent side turned.
    Once you have landed PKP on a st opponent and have discouraged them from evading or ducking its best to use 1 K+G P. After this if they stand block either throw catch throw or a SOFU STANCE P+K/P mixup. If they crouch just launch with 46 K.
    K+G grants the same advantage on NH and CH as 41236 P so just apply the same strategies.

    So that's it in a nut shell. Any questions or suggestions please feel free! Thanks yall.
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2020
    Ares-olimpico, b4k4, Myke and 5 others like this.
  2. DomAug

    DomAug Danger Lion Content Manager Lion Bronze Supporter

    PSN:
    domaug
    very thorough guide! thank you for sharing.
     
    Jason Elbow likes this.
  3. KrsJin

    KrsJin Well-Known Member

    Appreciate all this info for sure. Especially the plus frames and side turned stuff.
     
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  4. beanboy

    beanboy Well-Known Member

    Oy! Good info. Time ta take some notes.
     
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  5. Chanchai

    Chanchai Well-Known Member

    I have to give @Jason Elbow a lot of respect for this guide! Thanks for this excellent guide, it is on point and very concise!

    Thank you for this /respect
     
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  6. Jason Elbow

    Jason Elbow Well-Known Member

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    Its ok now...
    XBL:
    Jason ELBOW AKT
    Thanks for the props bruh!
     
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  7. Chanchai

    Chanchai Well-Known Member

    Hi @Jason Elbow , I’ll point out a couple of cases where 1K is very good with its risks (that you’re dead if it’s blocked or evaded) lowered.

    * 1K is incredibly good against guard breaks that are high. If you can read it, and then see the guard break, 1K is really good. That said, you need to confirm whether you can combo or not but this is super easy to do (just look for alternate animation or yellow flash).

    * 1K eats Shun’s BT Sou Sabaki like candy. If you see this move, just build it into your reflexes to use 1K and you are almost guaranteed a MC hit combo.

    * 1K punishes Shun when he goes to the ground if you play it just carefully enough. He can hard counter lows, but this move can really drive a Shun playing ground games crazy if you use it carefully.

    I actually have a lot to say about 2K, but I’ll save it for another time. It’s a very specific tool, but it is a strong tool in Lion’s kit.
     
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  8. Jason Elbow

    Jason Elbow Well-Known Member

    PSN:
    Its ok now...
    XBL:
    Jason ELBOW AKT
    Oh 1K is a EXCELLENT tool to use. Especially to abare with. I use it alot! Thanks for the input!
     
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  9. b4k4

    b4k4 Well-Known Member

    PSN:
    SoundReason
    Thanks for this very useful write up.

    Ultimate has me coming back after a long time away from the game. I've forgotten a lot of options and this guide gave a really great overview of some of the most potent tools Lion has, as well as how, why, and when to apply them. Reading this reminded me of the things I'm forgetting to use, or the other ways to use things in ways I hadn't been thinking about.

    I want to make a point of using 4P+K+G options more. It's something I've found hard to work into my game naturally, but I think looking out for the sabaki opportunities is going to be what opens it up. 4K and PK transitions are a lot harder to get people to hesitate for in my experience.
     
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