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Astaroth Guide by Kent Dela Pena
Version: 1.2 | Updated: 03/30/2003
********** *Astaroth* ********** Author: Kent Dela Pena Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Version 1.2 This FAQ is copyrighted (c) Kent Dela Pena 2003. All rights reserved. I can't really believe I have to say this, but this work is not to be used for profit and doing so bequeaths you the title of poor sad loser who must find a real job. Really, there's better ways to make money out there. Do not try to reproduce this and write it off as yours. You'll never amount to anything in life if you're out there copying FAQs and saying it's yours. There are better and more important things to plagiarize. Do not go out there claiming to be me either, or an FAQ writer for that matter. Although I know these moves, I am not the greatest player, nor should I recommend living my life. It's something you don't wanna do. If you knew me, you wouldn't wanna be me. This FAQ is in English and the only foreign language I can speak is French. I'm sorry if you can't understand it or get any of the jokes (there's jokes?) Please do not email me in languages other than French or English. Those will be deleted immediately. Also put "Asty FAQ" as the subject. This FAQ should be posted on www.gamefaqs.com unless you ask me for permission to post it on your site (chances are, I'll say yes, especially if you baked cookies). This FAQ can also be found on the following sites: ******************* *Table of Contents* ******************* 1. Version History 2. Introduction 3. Legend 4. Who is this Monster? 5. Move list 6. In depth moves 7. The Game 8. Playing Astaroth in a Nutshell 9. Credits 10. Main Contributors 11. Final Words ***************** *Version History* ***************** 1.0 - Jan 30, 2003 - Astaroth FAQ is born. 1.1 - Feb 04, 2003 - Fixed spacing 1.2 - Mar 30, 2003 - Added moves Added more comments on Astaroth in a Nutshell Deleted that weren't useful in certain sections Removed combos that do not work ************** *Introduction* ************** This FAQ is for all those players who want to learn to use Astaroth. We all have our reasons, so just continue reading and see what's up with him in his latest Soul Calibur adventure. I made this FAQ and any FAQs mainly for myself. I used it as a guide for which moves to use under various conditions. I've always believed in sharing my wealth so I would like to pass on this knowledge to anybody else who wishes to learn Asty. If there are errors, holes, or strats, you are more than welcome to kindly send an email. ******** *Legend* ******** I'm assuming that you know the conventions such as 1_2 and so on. Here's just a rundown on all the buttons and directions. I think the illustration below insults your intelligence, but if ya stil need them... Facing Right Facing Left 7 8 9 9 8 7 O O O O O O \|/ (A) (B) (K) \|/ (A) (B) (K) 4 O-5-O 6 (G) 6 O-5-O 4 (G) /|\ /|\ O O O O O O 1 2 3 3 2 1 I'm guessing that you're aware of the console buttons, so I won't use an illustration here. Plus, everyone has their own button layout. Here are some other terms used in the FAQ: WS: While Standing from crouch FC: Full Crouch *: Move is delayable [X]: Hold button (usually optional) CH: Counter Hit (interrupt opp's move) GI: Guard Impact/Parry(4G or 6G) 8wr: Side step (hold or double tap 3_2_1_7_8_9) RC: Recover Crouching ********************** *Who is this Monster?* ********************** Astaroth is a giant who uses an axe. That's all you need to know. Do you really care about his story? What is this? The Asty's Story FAQ? Read for it somewhere else. Given his fighting style, you know Astaroth won't be depending on finesse and fancy techniques, but devastating throws and brutal attacks. Don't expect something flashy with this guy. Most of the time, you'll be depending on his post GI, wake ups, spacing, and throw games. *********** *Move list* *********** Okay, maybe not to its entirety. There is no movelist on this FAQ. If you need one that badly, check out www.soulcalibur.com; www.guardimpact.com; and many other FAQs that lists Astaroth's moves. SC websites also gives you frame rates, damage properties, and such detailed info as well. Please check there if you need it that badly. I'm just assuming you know all of Astaroth's moves or at least have a move list printed out and just want to know what's good to use. **************** *In depth moves* **************** The following are moves I use the majority of my matches. Rarely used moves will be listed in the game section under its circumstance. In no particular order, here are Astaroth's moves that I use a lot during his fights, in other words, you should too. Strikes ------- A*A - Double side swipes with the axe. Astaroth's natural combo. If the 1st connects, the 2nd swipe is guaranteed. This move has great horizontal range, but the string can also be ducked under. The first hit is also G cancellable which is useful if you can anticipate a GI attempt and fake out your opponent. The G cancel fake can also be used as a throw set up by causing opponents to block and freeze in one spot. A*[A] - Same as above, except the 2nd hit is unblockable. Use this when people turtle. The 2nd unblockable causes some damage and turns the opponent BT and within axe range. Both swipes hit high so watch out when using this since people can duck the unblockable. Try using the following as follow ups: 66B - Please refer to the corresponding moves in the FAQ. 66K 1A PT Throws - Use this after training your opponents to block a 66B, PT, or 66K. A*B - Axe swipe into an axe stab. Catches opponents who try to duck the 2nd hit or retaliate after the 1st hit. Pushes back on block leaving Asty safe from throws and a few close range moves. Also, if the 2nd hit is CH, the opponent will crumple stun. 6A*B - Elbow into axe uppercut. Astaroth's fastest move, but unfortunately, must be done up close. Natural combo when it isn't delayed. 66[A],B or 8wr 3_9[A],B - Two handed side swipe into a giant over head chop. Another one of Astaroth's dangerous moves. On CH, this becomes a Natural Combo and takes off a nice chunk of health. Even if the 1st hit is blocked, this move is quite safe due to the high damage & guard stun properties of the 2nd hit. However, the 2nd hit is easily SSed or GIed. The non charged version of the first hit allows Astaroth to recover faster. 1A - Counter clockwise low axe sweep. The 1[A] version has its follow ups, but honestly, that'll only land against scrubs and mashers. This move goes under high hits while hitting low, making it some what useful. 214A(Ax5) - Asty spins around with his axe Hammer Throw style. AKA Poseidon's Tide (PT) One of Astaroth's popular moves. He can do up to 5 hits & you can control which direction he moves as he spins. If the 1st hit connects, this move will turn into a throw. Other amazing properties of this move is that it tech crouches under High hits, a great mid hitting 8wr tracker, and he can side step as he executes the move which as a result can evade many linear moves. No Astaroth player is complete without this move. B*A - Axe chop into a side swipe. Use this to catch crouchers & anybody who tries to 8wr or retaliate after the initial axe stab. The first strike is also G-cancellable. B~6,K - Downward butt stab into rising knee. The Air Throw is guaranteed on a CH. The initial stab comes out fairly quick, but quite linear. 3[B] - Uppercut with the axe. The hit always launches. Follow ups vary based on the nature of the hit. Yes, the move is quite linear and the unblockable charge is long, but keep in mind that the charged version can be G cancelled. Thus, this move becomes great for PT and throw set ups. This is safe on block if opponents choose to stand there and block it. 4B - Simultaneous stomp & head butt. Although this is his 2nd fastest move, you'll be using this more than the other one due to its better range. 6B - Astaroth spears his opponent with his axe. On a CH, this causes a crumple stun. Nice spacing tool from close. 66B - Vertical cross check with the axe Probably Astaroth's fastest mid range move. You can use this to punish a lot of moves with lots of lag or intercept your opponent trying to do a move. This move can cause Ring Outs. Use this a lot to train people into using a stand block. That way, they become prone to throws. When in doubt, 66B except against 8wrers. 6K - Jumping knee On CH, this will launch and high enough to land an Air Throw. I use this pretty much as a masher killer move. 4K,K - 4 hit alternating foot stomps. The 2nd hit of each stomp will squash opponents playing dead. You can cancel into a Soul Charge (A+B+K~G) and play a throw guessing game. 66[K] or 8wr 3_9[K] or FC 3[K] - Shoulder charging Bull Rush A classic move that's as popular as ever. This move goes under high hits and can cause ring outs. Since Astaroth is quite a wide individual, this move is difficult to side step from close to mid range. On a full charge, the Bull Rush launches opponents. Use the 8wr version because it's easier to follow up after. The charged version can also be cancelled, thus creating a good throw or PT set up. A+B - Single handed swing Astaroth can use his other hand by intputting 2A+B (8A+B when facing left). Best used as a mid range punisher and keep away/stalling tool. This will catch 8wrers. 3[A+B] - Astaroth does an upward cross check lifting his opponent. Without holding A+B, Astaroth lifts his opponent off their feet. When A+B is fully charged, Astaroth locks his opponent onto the axe's shaft, runs a few paces, then disposes of them ahead, setting them up for some punishment. This move can ring out, but if Asty's too close to the edge of the ring, he'll ring himself out instead. This move has a little bit of tech crouch properties. 6B+K - Astaroth jumps at his opponent spread eagle slamming his chest into their face. This move is quite useful against quick pokers. It has a built in GI ability and knocks people down on CH. BT B+K - While his back's facing the opponent, Asty uses the butt of the axe to stab. Unable to find a practical section to list this under, use this move whenever an opponent is approaching Astaroth's back since this comes out quite fast. 8wr 2A,A - Astaroth twirls like a ballerina while holding the axe blade outside. Although sissy looking, this move can save on many occasions. Good quick punisher off an 8wr and also catches 8wrers. The 2nd hit whether it does damage or is blocked will push opponents back. Try using the following after executing this: 66B - Once again, refer to these moves and their uses. 66K PT Command Throw 8wr 2B - Astaroth does a giant uppercut swing Although the opponent is launched sky high, nothing is guaranteed off this move, but Astaroth is left in a good position for wake ups or is given enough time to Soul Charge. This move is quite safe on block as well. Throws ------ G+B4 - Astaroth flings his opponent high into the air. The only throw you should be going for. B button escape, small escape window, and some damaging follow ups. G+B6 - Astaroth picks up his opponent into a backbreakeresque throw. Only use this when your opponent escapes the previous throw when you become predictable with that throw. Does better damage than the basic throws, quite simple to execute, a small escape window, and sets up great position for wake ups. G+B (While opponent's in the Air) - Asty catches & dangles his opponent by the leg and stabs 3 times with the axe. Probably his most damaging move when an opponent is plummeting to the ground. It's up to you if you want to use this for good damage & psychological advantage or go with something else that leaves him in better position for wake ups. At times, you can pick people out of the air with this move. If Yoshimitsu's caught in his pogo stance, try plucking him out with this for some good laughs. 2G+A_G+B (While opponent's ducking) - Astaroth grabs the crouching opponent does a power bomb. Obviously only use this when opponents are crouching. Good mix up between this and the normal throws. Also, this throw cannot be GI'ed and he's been known to catch people out of various stances with this throw, such as Voldo's Mantis Crawl. 3G+A_G+B - Same as above, but Astaroth hops prior to grabbing. 2A+B_B+K (While opponent's down) - Pick up the laying opponent with his axe only to slam them back down. Damaging follow up if opponents decide to play dead. Sometimes it is guaranteed after certain moves, which are listed later. It is escapable based on the command used. A breaks A+B while B breaks B+K. 2A (While opponent's down) - Scoop up the opponent with the axe head, forcing them to stand. Like above, but this move is unbreakable and not as damaging. The enemy is forced to stand, but there isn't anything guaranteed after this move. However you're more likely to have the psychological advantage here. Try using one of the following after being successful with this move: 66B - Cross list these moves for reference 66K PT 3[A+B] Another throw ********** *The Game* ********** As you fight, you'll be put into various situations. Here are some moves that I've suggested during each scenario. I suggest that you continue reading since I may add more moves that were not suggested under the in-depth moves section. Opening move - What you do right off the bat can determine the outcome and flow of the match. Try mixing up the following: - A+B_8A+B - Anybody who tries to 8wr, use a short ranged attack, or rush forwards will be nailed with this move. - Run 'n' Throw - Use this once you've trained your opponent to block/avoid an oncoming A+B. - 1A - Same use as A+B, but goes under any attempted high hits by opponents. - 9B - Leap over quick moves or even catch an opponent standing still. However, if the adversary side steps this, Astaroth's in plenty of trouble. - PT - I suggest doing this while move to the side. You can catch in coming opponents while dodging an opponent's move at the same time. Also quite safe if whiffed since this move is controllable. - Defensive - Either holding G, go into 8wr, GIing, or backing off in general. Some times it's a good idea vs. other characters who can beat Astaroth to the punch right off the bat, like Ivy and Voldo. Spacing - Yielding the largest yet slower weapons in the game, Astaroth will have to take advantage of his long reach when attacking opponents. Try using these moves to keep people from approaching further: - A+B or 2_8 A+B - 8wr catcher and mid hitting. This pretty much confines opponents to the space in front of Asty's axe. - 3A_3[A] - Decent ranged unblockable. Unfortunately, this can be ducked. - PT - If you've experienced how amazing this move is, there's no need to explain. - 66[A],B_8wr 3[A],B - The initial mid hitting axe swing is decent and the fear of the high damaging 2nd hit will deter anybody from coming closer. 8wring the 2nd hit on the other hand is a whole different story. - 1A - Low hit option. Don't expect it to connect, but use this to keep players on their toes. Pokes - Use pokes just to show people that Astaroth can still smack people even if they're too close for his optimal weapon range. Really, when you're up close, you would want to throw them. Use the following to train people into using the standing block or push back: - A series - Usually to stop 8wrs and also create space. - 2A_K - Simple low hit tick, but with decent range and RC properties. - B*A - Use 1st hit to catch crouchers, 2nd to stop possible 8wrs. - 4B - Fastest move here. - 6B - Slower than his average pokes, but creates a little distance and has a nice crumple stun property off a CH. - B6 - The knee follow up will usually keep people from retaliating after the inital strike. Throw set up right here as well. - 1K,A - Low hit to high that's guaranteed on CH. - 3K,A - No low hit, but guaranteed on CH. - 8wr 2_8 A,A - Anti-8wr, quite quick. Whiff punisher - If your opponent does a move from too far and completely misses, you've successfully dodged it, or you blocked a move with lots of recovery, try these: - Pokes - Use that section if you're close enough. - Command Throws - Usually devastating and spirit breaking. - 66B - Quick, good damage, knocks down your opponent close enough for some good wake ups, and can Ring Out. This knockdown move comes out real fast and serves as a stance punisher. - 66K - Same as above plus it goes under high hits. - PT - No need to explain. - B+K - Regardless whether the opponent can stand block in time or not, they will find themselves with their backs towards Asty. - 6B+K - Useful against quick pokers who attempt to interrupt at midrange thanks to its built in GI. Wake ups - Astaroth is quite deadly in this department. This is one of his strengths in the game since each individual hit can pack quite a wallop. Here are some useful moves to try: - Command Throws - Use when opponents always recover with a standing block. Use crouch throws when a crouch block is anticipated. Ground throws are meant for sleepers. - 1A - Use when opponents play dead and to discourage any high GI (6G) attempts. - PT - Can catch crouchers who duck too early & also intercepts any attempted wake up attack. - 3[B]G - - 66B - Interrupts any wake up attacks. - 66[K] - Same as above but as well as cancelling the charge in order to do a throw set up. - 4K,K - After the 1st stomp, you can Soul Charge cancel which can lead to a throw set up or GI bait. - 3[A+B] - Catch crouchers and throw off possible GI attempts. - 4[A+B] - If you're close enough, untrained opponents usually try to block or duck when they see Astaroth with his arms wide open. As a result, they get hit by the unblockable throw. Once people get used to the unblockable, you should start releasing early when they try to attack early. The non chargeable version becomes unblockable after a level 1 Soul Charge. 8wr - Despite being large and heavy, Astaroth's large legs have wide strides. His first step off a 8wr is one of the widest in the game, but everyone else can catch up to him due to his slow speed. 8wr is always important for getting into better position or even evading a linear attack. Here's some suggested moves while 8wring: - 2_8A,A - A fast move that serves as anti-8wr as well. Also sets up throws and power shots. - 2_8B - Sky high launcher that creates decent wake ups. - 3_9[A],B - Hopefully, you'll catch this on a CH, nice to throw out anyways. - 3_9[K] - One of the best options. Most 8wr tracking moves hit high. The Bull Charge goes under high hits. Put the two together and Astaroth has an amazing option while he does an 8wr. Usually, full charge isn't recommended unless you plan to G cancel. Post GI - Another aspect where Astaroth truly shines. His Guard Impact follow ups is another reason to be intimidated. This aspect is quite important since he lacks a dependable interrupting move. Mix up the pain by using the following: - Command Throw - Most commonly used as an instant GI punish. Up to 50% of life can be taken out and/or more pressure in wake ups. - 3[A+B] - This delayed follow up is best used while playing with Version A machines due to its guaranteed followups. - PT - Nice delayed follow up to throw off reGI timing. - [K] - Another decent delayed followup. - 3B or 3[B]- Launcher's quite decent and sets up some wake ups, another strength of Asty's. Use the charged version to throw off re-GI timing and/or G cancel the charge into a throw. Launchers - Being the largest character who can push people around, Astaroth has ways to send people into the air. Here they are: - 3B_[B] - On a CH 3B, opponents will be launched as high as [B]. - CH 6K - Decent priority. - CH B~6,K - See above. - 3A+B - - 8wr 3_9[K] - Only a true launcher in Version A. - 8wr 2_8 B - Opponent is launched, but nothing's guaranteed. This does leave a good opening for wake ups or Soul Charging. If you want to be successful with juggles, you have to have the mentality that all your launchers will connect. That way when you see your opponent in the air, you won't be caught off guard and mess up a juggle. Juggles - Astaroth is not a strong juggler. There are no strings in his arsenal that will create good punishing juggles. He does have his ways with dealing with plummeting opponents. Here's what he can do: - G+B - You'll probably use his Air Throw a lot when opponents are launched high enough. This is usually used after CH 6K (B~6 included), CH 3B, 3[B], G+B4, CH 3A+B, or 8wr 3_9[K]. You can also use this off of 3A+B, but I find 4B to be more reliable. - 66B - If Astaroth can catch a guy into an Air Throw, this move will connect as well. Use this if you can get a possible Ring Out or if you're bored with Air Throws, as if that'll ever happen. - 66K - See above. - 4B - If you cannot catch an opponent with an Air Throw, then you'll have to settle for this. However, using this as a follow up (charged version is usually better) sets up Astaroth in a better position for wake ups. - PT - Only guaranteed after a launched Bull Rush in Version A. Guaranteed stuff - These aren't juggles exactly, but after doing these moves, their followups are guaranteed. Here's stuff Asty can do in sequence: - G+B4,8wr 2B - Standard follow up to this throw. You can also substitute with an Air Throw, 4[B], or 66B after the throw. - 8wr 3_9[K], 8wr 2B - Best follow up to the charged Bull Rush in Version D. - 6B,Ground Throw_8wr 2B - Use any ground throw of your choice or substitute. - CH 6B+K_6[B+K], Ground throw - 3[A+B], PT or 3G+A_B - This is only guaranteed in Version A. In Version D, this combo is possible, but avoidable. Walls - My experience with walls are quite limited. You may try the following: - PT - You should know by now. - 66B - Sets up a nice wake up follow up. - B+G - Most likely an Air Throw will come out. Other times not, but by now you should have a habit of jerking the joystick to 4 or 6 everytime you land a standing throw (by now you're also only using B+G to throw with Astaroth). ******************************** *Playing Astaroth in a Nutshell* ******************************** When using the big man, take advantage of his strengths (obviously!): Post-GI, Wake Ups, and Throws. When you get an opponent down, punish them for getting up the wrong way. Simple to say, but sometimes difficult to do. Guard Impacting is important for this character due to his slow nature. Astaroth lacks a reliable interrupting move, thus, depending on GIing in order to break up an opponent's rush. However, do not try to GI everytime you think your opponent will attack. You will end up getting hurt that way. Another way to prevent from getting pressured is by using his long reach as a stalling tactic. You can also use this when you want to set up your own rush. In other words, throw when you're in range (Astaroth has the best throw range in the game), keep them out side when it doesn't feel right to rush in. However, in order to land throws consistently, you have to attack unlike most other characters. Astaroth is a trainer. When fighting as him, condition opponents to use the standing guard. This means using plenty of mid hits that were listed in the FAQ. ********* *Credits* ********* I would like to thank the following: Avex Honda NSX - Getting me started in SC2 in general since T4's pretty dead on campus. You owe me 3 hot dogs! Every opponent - Challenging me. Nobody likes to play the CPU all the time. This is the only way we get better. Game sites - Posting this up. Me - Need I explain? Namco - Making a great game to a great series with a great character Reno - I learned quite a lot from a superior Astaroth player first hand Shao Khan - Helping me get started with Astaroth Toronto Crew - Okay, there's no standard official team name, but the players are good. York University - Having this game on campus so that I could find some time to play when I'm not studying or getting drunk on campus. But no thanks for charging us a loonie to play! You, the reader - Giving a purpose for this FAQ ******************* *Main Contributors* ******************* These guys had some major input when it came to this FAQ. Although I started writing this, these people helped out on some strats regarding Astaroth: Noh Bah Dee - You'd understand this if you've read the Odyssey ************* *Final Words* ************* This FAQ wasn't that difficult to write, just long. Unless I get real bored and start using someone else or have reached my maximum potential with Asty, this FAQ will never be finished. Always feel free to write (email's at the top of the page) and you will receive credit for any worthwhile contributions. Just because I am teaching others out there how to use Astaroth doesn't mean that I won't learn anything here. I am not the greatest Astaroth player in the world or even in Toronto for that matter (Reno's better, much better). I can't even do his moves 100% of the time (especially when you've got awful sticks). I'm sure there are some readers out there who can beat me using Asty. In the SC.com forum my screen name is AnusMaximus. If I ever come across an establishment with this game, I'll be there playing. Currently, my source for SC2 has been on Campus Cove at York University. Remember, reading every FAQ will not substitute for experience. So go out there and play.