RetroVision – Brand New Street Fighter II Combos Uncovered

Thought Capcom’s legendary fighter Street Fighter II: The World Warrior had revealed all of its secrets? Well if so, then get ready to revise that stance. As this week, a massive 26 years later, one Street Fighter master has discovered an entire subset of unbeatable combos.

That Street Fighter master is none other than Desk. A gamer and musician considered by many a fighting game fanatic to be one of the best combo technicians never to take his skills to the pro circuit. However, that aside, I bet you’re more interested in knowing is exactly what Desk discovered, right?

Street Fighter II Posters
Posters for the original Street Fighter II: The World Warrior and its popular follow up Super Street Fighter II

Well, to understand what Desk discovered we first need to take a look at one of the core constructs of performing a combo in Street Fighter II. That is namely the nature of the Knockdown. You see, in Street Fighter II when you perform a Sweep Knockdown on your opponent, that’ll usually be the end of the combo.

This was obviously introduced as a method of balancing the gameplay, and allowing the other player a chance to respond and get back into the fight. However, it now seems as though that’s not always the case. Well it isn’t if you’re battling against specific boss fighter.

Vega Street Fighter 2
Original artwork for Vega (Balrog in Japan)

That fighter in question is Vega (or Balrog as he’s known in Japan). So what’s so special about Vega then? Well, despite becoming one of Street Fighter II’s most popular and well loved characters on his playable debut in Street Fighter II’: Champion Edition, the narcissistic Spanish ninja has one critical flaw in The World Warrior. A flaw that has somehow gone largely undiscovered for 26 years.

That flaw is something the Desk refers to as an OTG (on the ground) glitch, and is a glitch that allows any fighter to continue to attack Vega following a sweep knockdown if timed right. Interestingly, this glitch is not actually something new, although it is definitely one of Street Fighter II’s more hidden secrets. You see, this is because it was actually first discovered back in the early 90s by a Japanese gamer entitled TZW, who first performed this trick “back in the days when combo videos only existed on VHS”.

Nevertheless, for one reason or another it remained largely unnoticed by the community. A fact that is surprising in and of itself. However, Desk has now discovered that it can even be exploited in order to perform new and unique combos on a poor unsuspecting Vega. What’s more, it even has the ability of allowing players to perform endless unbeatable combos on masked the Ninja as any playable character.

I’m sure you’re now wondering how this can be achieved, and what these combos are? Well first to how this all works, and for this we also need to look at an added technique that can be used alongside the OTG glitch. This technique is what Desk calls the “falling into the corner pause”, and is a Street Fighter II characteristic that causes a delay in the timing in which a player can attack Vega following a sweep. As such, when Vega hits a wall a split second pause is caused, just enough for Desk to create infinitely flowing combos of varying attacks and damage.

As can be seen in Desk’s video demonstration above, these combos can quite brutal and devastating. There are even combos that can only be achieved through manipulating these newly uncovered tricks. As pointed out by Desk, Blanka can now perform a jumping hard kick, flowing into a crouching hard kick, followed by the same again but with the kicks replaced with punches.

That’s not all though, as Chun-Li can also be seen performing crouching hard kicks that are immediately followed by a jump-in combo attack. If you check out the video in full, you can also see infinite sweeping attacks, similar to King from Tekken, double jump-in combos, and even a double Hadouken from Ken. All of which had been thought impossible for 26 years.

Ken performing a double Hadouken combo

All in all, this is quite the discovery. However, it’s arguably not the most impressive aspect of Desk’s find. You see, in in Street Fighter II: The World Warrior, Vega is actually one of the non-playable boss fighters. As such, Desk had to perform all of these combos against a CPU boss character, and did so by hand. A fact which easily meant 100s of hours of trial and error as he tried to manipulate the CPU Vega into the pixel perfect position.

Additionally, he also had to deal with the game’s extensive random factors, which include damage dealt, stun points and even the length of time a player is left stunned for. This is something that many fans have criticised the game over the years for this, claiming it to be “broken”. Nevertheless, regardless of which side of the fence you sit on, the fact that Desk even worked around these to perform the combos is nothing short of remarkable.

Street Fighter II Ryu Vs Ken
Street Fighter’s immortal rivalry – Ryu vs Ken

Street Fighter II is a game that elicits a humongous amount of passion from the community, something that is easily encapsulated in Desk’s four week quest to perform that which many thought was impossible. The World Warrior may have been quickly dwarfed by the success of its multiple iterations, all of which seemingly eliminated this glitch. However, it’s a title that not only gave the gaming world so much back in the 90s, but is evidently one that keeps on giving to this day.

Now to just remember all of those old combos!

Sophia Aubrey Drake

A lifelong gamer with a fanatical love of all things Nintendo and Japan. So much so that she's written a thesis on one and lived in the other. Currently on a quest to catch every last Pokémon. Follow me on twitter via @DivaXChill or @RingsandCoins.

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