I was thinking about frame traps for a while yesterday, and happened to watch this match; Valle vs Cheeseface Immortal (Claw) at Midwest Championships. Watching it was a great lesson in frame trapping.
Some quick notes:
00:27 He starts out with a jumping roundhouse into a tick throw, getting that first conditioning for the claw to mash tech throw.
00:52 Jumping roundhouse, walk forward mp into counterhit, throw
00:58 Jumping rh, walk forward, counterhit clp chp, dizzy
01:25 Jumping rh into walk forward mp block string. This time Claw has been conditioned not to hit anything when put into block.
01:38 Another jump rh into walk forward crouch short crouch jab string. The Claw again doesn’t mash out anything, and gets scooped up by the tick throw followup.
01:53: jump rh, walk forward counterhit srk for the win. Not sure if he was gonna fadc that one.
Valle does leave a lot of intentional gaps in his strings to get counterhits, be it with crouching strong, or standing strong. He also does this a lot with the opponent in the corner, perhaps taking advantage of the psychological disadvantage or panic of being trapped in the corner.
03:19, gets another walk forward jab counterhit off a jump in. The Claw jumps out of the throw, but gets swept for the KO.
Valle seems to take every opportunity to apply frame traps, at the same time continually mixing up the conditioning and the appropriate punishment, AND at the same time always doing it with safe jump timing AND with option selects. Whoa.
While I was processing all that he was doing, one thing that occurred to me about the practicality of these setups. A lot of these counterhit setups were coming off a single jumping roundhouse on block.
Now I have pretty bad hit confirm reactions, and I tend to err on the side of safe crouch jab crouch jab hit confirms. Now Valle’s not perfect either, and sometimes tries to throw when he was hitting, and vice versa, but I’m not sure if I can react fast enough to do a walk forward cmp frame trap off a single block jump roundhouse. I suppose I just need to forcefeed it into my game, and when it’s simply a natural part of my offense, my horrible hit confirm reaction time won’t matter as much.
Another thing that I probably need to test, is whether jump roundhouse , walk forward cmp/clp combos on hit anyway. Because the hit stun of jump in attacks in SF4 is so great in comparison to games like ST, I would guess that it probably does combo anyway. So you could probably just do it all the time without worrying about hit confirming, at least on characters without easy invincible reversals anyway.
Another thing that is amazing and probably particular to Valle’s Ryu, is that he does seem to get a lot of free jump ins. Which is probably a byproduct of his unorthodox pressure style. Not to take anything away from Cheeseface, but I’ve seen the same thing happen to top players like Keno, who is known for his reaction time and the Keno Eye!