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Sidestepping/Lei Guide by Anonymous

Lei FAQ for Tekken 3


Sidestepping an attack and performing a side-throw in Tekken 3 (known
as 'E'-ing in VF3) is fairly tricky and extremely risky.  For me,
sidestep/throw is like a reversal: you only do it when you can confidently 
predict a certain type of attack.

As most combos 'track' a sidestepping opponent, the best attacks to dodge
are those that involve a single hit that has a fairly long recovery
time.  This basically means dangerous hits like Paul's death fist,
Jin's dashing uppercut, etc.  This also means it is a very high risk
situation, and personally I only do it if I think I can afford to
lose a round and just want to show off.

If you are 90% sure that one of these moves is coming, wait for it to
start, tap U or D once, and if you successfully dodged, go for a 1+3
or 2+4 throw.  The throw damage is not amazingly high on side throws,
so you will probably get more damage by doing a 10-hit combo instead.
Combos are more functional, but if you're playing for crowd reaction,
sidethrows are cooler (some of Hwoarang's have to be seen to be


Firstly, here's a basic moves list, mainly new but there's some
old stuff here too (for the full old moves list from Tekken 2,
check Bobo's Lei Wulong page, there should be a link from this
site).  I'll give some info on strategy and juggles, plus some
stuff on how to fight _against_ Lei, as it seems a lot of people
are jumping on the Lei bandwagon at the moment.


1+3     Sometimes flying sky kick (old 1+3 from Tekken 2).
        Sometimes neck-shake throw.  Press 1+2 during this to
        make Lei drink and go to the drunk stance.  Drinking
        makes the throw do only half the normal damage, the other
        half is added to Lei's lifebar.
1+3~B       Trip and elbow
2+4     Neck wringer (old)
f,f+1+2     Trip (old)

Regular moves:

b+1+2           headbutt
d+1+2           slide position: (face-down, head towards)
    4~3         slide
    3               rising low kick
    4               rising low kick
    1           roll to play dead position
d+3+4           play dead: (face-up, head towards)
    3+4         double kick (floats)
    3           sweep
    3~4         rave spin
    4           rising midkick
    d+1         roll to slide position
u/f+2           elbow drop -> play dead (hits floored or
                                    standing opponent)
b+3+4           back turn position:
    1           high backfist -> back turn
    d+1         low backfist -> back turn
    2           back uppercut (floats)
    d+4,4       rave spin
    4           back midkick
    3+4,3+4,3+4     triple backflip
f+3+4           drunk stance:
    1           drunk punch
    3+4         low double kick -> facedown position
4~4,3,3         rolling kicks -> facedown position
4~3         cartwheel kick -> facedown position
            facedown position: (face-down, head away)
    4~3         liedown cartwheel kick -> facedown position
    3~4         sweep -> play dead position
    3~4,4       rave spin
    3           rising low kick
    4           rising mid kick
b+1+4           'snake' stance:
    1,1,1,1,1,1     hopping punches
    2,2,2       stabbing punches (2nd hit breaks guard if blocked)
    1+3         'tiger' stance:
    1           spin and 1+3 throw
    2           two-handed strike
    2+4         spin and 2+4 throw
    1+3         '???' stance:
    1       overhead swipe
    2               overhead swipe
    4       fast low sweep
2+4         'mantis' stance:
    1           2-handed low punch
    2           uppercut (floats)
    2+4         'crane' stance:
    4       jumping low kick
    3,2,3,3         4-hit combo (last kick floats)
1+2         2 turning punches -> back turn
1+2~B           1 turning punch -> back turn
1+2~1+2         1 turning punch, back uppercut (floats)
b+2+3           one-leg stance:
    3,3,3,3     hawk's claw kick combo
    4           unblockable phoenix kick
u/f+4           short jump kick (floats)
f,N,1,2,1,2,3       punch rush, low kick
f,N,1,2,1,2,4       punch rush, mid kick
F+4,1,2,3       crescent, 2 punches, low kick
F+4,1,2,4       crescent, 2 punches, mid kick
F+4,2,1,2,3     crescent, 3 punches, low kick
F+4,2,1,2,4     crescent, 3 punches, mid kick

Play info for the new moves:

Headbutt: this moves under a high strike, so use it to counter any
move that could normally be ducked.  A good example is, when playing
against another Lei, if you block low against your opponent's rave
spin (ie, the sweep is blocked), go straight into a headbutt and you
have a guaranteed counter against the jumping crescent.

Slide position: dropping straight into the slide position, like many
of Lei' moves, is great against casual scrubs but useless in high
level competition.  The main drawback is the lack of rising midkick,
all moves from this position hit low.  The only way to get a mid
kick is to either roll towards your opponent and midkick on the end
of the roll, or roll over into the play-dead position and try a
different attack from there.

Elbow drop: this hits either a standing or floored opponent, and
leaves you in the play-dead position.  It's sometimes good to use
this as a sneaky way to get into 'play dead', then float with the
double kick or hit them with the rave spin.

Drunk stance: the low kicks from here can be seen coming a mile off
(the buildup is so long) but like the elbow drop, it can be used as a
sneaky way to get into a liedown position (miss the double kick, then
cartwheel from the facedown position as the opponent moves in to
counter, he won't know what hit him).  The drunk punch is very
effective though, it has a good range, and does good damage, and
people seem to walk right into it for some reason.  Also, standing in
the drunk stance, if your opponent tries to run into you (or it may
be if they attempt certain attacks, I'm not 100% sure), Lei staggers
around his opponent and gets behind where he should be able to get in
a back (side?) throw for free.  I've only ever seen this "drunk
surprise exchange" happen twice, so I'm not entirely sure how it
works, but all Lei has to do is stand there in the drunk stance.

1 turning punch -> back turn: this one can take people by surprise,
it starts out like the old 2 turning punches, but stops after the 1st
punch in the back-turn position.  Do this outside of hit-range, then
use your favourite back-turn technique as your opponent moves in to
counter (a d+4,4 rave spin usually does the trick).

1 turning punch, back uppercut.  This is nice to use as a counter, I
think that the floating uppercut is guaranteed if the 1st punch MC's.
A lot of Tekken 2 players still duck when they see the first punch
come out, and aren't expecting the uppercut, so it's quite useful
against Tekken 3 beginners.

The 5 stance sequence: I'll go through the 5 stances individually.
Note that each time you switch stance (going up to the snake stance,
or doing the throw moves to switch again), you usually sidestep, so
switch during an opponent's attack and you can sometimes get around
to their side for a really damaging combo that they can't block (or
sidethrow after switching to the 'tiger' stance).

'Snake' stance:
The 6 hopping punches are easily ducked and countered, so use them at
your own risk!

The 3 stabbing punches are much better.  The second punch breaks the
opponent's guard and stuns them if it's blocked high, and if that
happens, the 3rd punch is guaranteed.  AFAIK the only way the
opponent can stop the block-stun is by blocking the second hit LOW -
this will block without the guard-breaking block stun.  This is a bit
of a weird one, I don't think there's any other move in the game that
can actually be blocked at both heights.  The third hit also hits
low, so the ideal defence against this move is to block high-low-low.
I'm still not 100% sure on this.

'Tiger' stance:
The spin&throw takes a lot of people by surprise, and often gives a
sidethrow.  If your opponent starts to duck the throw, hit them with
the double arm strike instead.

'Mantis' stance:
This one's good.  The double low punch tends to come out quicker than
the uppercut, and is highly effective.  More risky, but with a higher
payoff, is the uppercut:  the float is low, but the uppercut has a
fast recovery time, so you can easily juggle with a punch rush if
this one hits.

'???' stance: (sorry, don't know the name of this one!)
The low sweep from here has a good long range and is very quick,
hardly anyone blocks this.  If they do, mix it up with the overhead
strikes, as they hit a croucher and do nasty damage.

'Crane' stance:
The low kick is very effective and has quite a long range, it works
nicely on a rising opponent.

The 4-hit combo is good if you can counter with it, otherwise you
leave yourself open to throws/countering, as the last kick has a very
long recovery time.  Note that the timing of this combo is weird, you
have to tap the combo out at a consistent speed or some of the hits
come out more slowly.  The last kick floats if it connects, and also
hits a downed opponent, so this one can also be quite effective on a
rising opponent, as one of the 1st 3 hits can knock them down (the
2nd one hits low), and the last kick can do even more damage if they
stay down.

Stance-switching in mid-combo:
Lei's ability to change stance in the middle of a combo is one of his
most powerful techniques.  These are all the ways that I (currently)
know of that allow this:

Method (1) sidestepping: start off one of the following combos:
f,N,1,2,1,2,4 (punch rush, midkick)
F+4,1,2,4 (crescent, 2 punches, midkick)
F+4,2,1,2,4 (crescent, 3 punches, midkick)

Hold the joystick in either D or U position during any of the hits,
release the buttons, then release the joystick, and Lei will stop the
combo and go straight into a sidestep and switch stance.  The stances

During 1st hit: 'snake'
       2nd hit: 'tiger'
       3rd hit: 'mantis'
       4th hit: '???'
       5th hit: 'crane'

The numbering may be slightly different for the crescent, 2 punches,
midkick combo, I can't remember.  I never use the crescent ones
anyway, the first kick leaves you wide open to counters and is
absolutely suicidal against expert players, so it's probably best
to stick to the punch rush.  Note that if you want to dodge on the
last hit, you have to do the midkick version of the combo, the
lowkick one won't work.

Method (2) holding forward: start off one of the following combos:
[in 'snake' stance] 2,2,2 (stabbing punches)
[in 'snake' stance] 1,1,1,1,1,1 (hopping punches) [UNCONFIRMED!]
[in 'tiger' stance] 2 (2-handed strike)

Hold the joystick in the F position during any of the hits, release
the butons, then release the joystick, and you should find yourself
in a new stance (there is NO sidestep during the stance switch).

Stance switches during the "stabbing punches" are:
During 1st hit: stay in 'snake' stance
       2nd hit: 'tiger'
       3rd hit: 'mantis'

Stance switch during the "2-handed strike" is the '???' stance.

I have also read that you can stance switch during the "hopping
punches", haven't actually tried it myself, but it is likely that the
stances for each hit are the same as the sequence for dodging during
a punch rush, and I would guess that switching after the 6th hit
returns to the 'snake' stance, but I haven't confirmed this yet.

Using the stance switch:

Here's some examples of how a mid-combo stance switch can be used to
confuse your opponent and string techniques together.

Example (1):

Start a punch rush from just outside the hit range, and dodge on the
1st punch:
This makes you do one whiffed punch, then instantly sidestep your
opponent's inevitable counter or reversal attempt and puts you in the
snake stance.  Now hit them with the stabbing punches:
If it's working so far, they have just taken some nasty damage, and
you're now in the mantis stance.  Now go for the floating uppercut:

If they're too slow to counter, or crouching in a futile attempt to
block the last combo, they're going to get floated.  Juggle with a
punch rush & midkick+dodge.
As soon as the midkick connects, you sidestep into the crane stance.
Now hold F to walk towards the floored opponent and hit 4 as soon as
they try and get up (this hit is 95% guaranteed against the CPU, but
_good_ human opponents will get out of it).

Example (2):

Start a punch rush when you think it's likely to be blocked (watch
out for those reversals), and dodge on the 2nd punch:
After the 2nd hit is blocked, you sidestep into the tiger stance.
Go for the spin & throw:
If they expect a full punch rush, they'll still be blocking, and are
likely to just stand and take the throw.  If they try and counter
it's possible they'll miss because of the sidestep, and if this
happens you often get a side throw.

Example (3):

Similar to the last one, dodge on the 2nd punch:
After the 2nd hit, when you get into the tiger stance, go for the
double arm strike, holding F for a further stance switch.
If the strike is blocked, you are now in the '???' stance, so hit 4 for a
low sweep that nearly everyone falls for.

If you try and stance-switch too often, your opponents will get wise
to it and be able to counter as soon as you dodge, so try to use it
sparingly and you'll always be able to surprise your enemy with an
unexpected stance-switch.  Remember that you can throw from the tiger
stance and float/juggle from the mantis stance.


The following moves can be used to start a juggle:

u/f+4 (short jump kick).  Note that with Tekken 3's shorter jumping
system you no longer have to perform this as u/f,N,4, so the kick
comes out slightly quicker (which can make all the difference when
countering).  This floats low but has a fast recovery time.  Use this
in close fighting but get too predictable with this and expect to see
it reversed.

d/f+2 (right upper).  I never use this one myself, it may have to hit
as a major counter to guarantee a float, I'm not sure.

[from 'play dead'] 3+4 (double kick).  The usual floater for Lei
players, this one floats high and recovers with plenty of time left.

[from 'mantis' stance] 2 (uppercut).  Floats low, but has fast
recovery time.

[from 'back turn'] 2 (back uppercut).  Floats low, has long recovery

1+2~1+2 (turning punch, back uppercut).  See above.

[from 'crane' stance] 3,2,3,3.  See above.

Once the opponent is up in the air, here's some juggle techniques:

On high floats or low floats with fast recovery time:
f,N,1,2,1,2,4 - standard punch rush.  Dodge to the crane stance to
        get a low kick as they try and rise, but this isn't
1+2,d+1,d+4 - a Tekken 2 oldie, this still works, but the final sweep
          may not be guaranteed any more
1+2~1+2,1,2 - there may be some other really deadly combos that start
          with the turning punch and uppercut, I haven't spent
          enough time trying this yet.

On low floats, including those with long recovery time:
4~4,3,3 - rolling kicks as soon as they hit the floor.  In Tekken 2
      it was possible to get in a kick before the rolling kicks,
      I've never seen this work in Tekken 3.

Bounce juggles:

To knock the opponent off their feet:
[from 'back turn'] d+1 (low backfist -> back turn)

Follow up with the following:
2, d/b+4 - back uppercut, sweep (I _think_ the sweep is guaranteed).
d+1,d+1,d+4 - 2 more low backfists, sweep (sweep is not guaranteed
          but usually hits)
3+4,3+4,3+4 - 3 backflips, the first 2 are guaranteed, the 3rd can be
          blocked with quick recover
4, d/b+4 - midkick, sweep

Hitting a floored opponent (welcome to the cheese zone):

Adapt your ground-hit strategy depending on how your opponent usually
reacts.  Against a lot of players, 3~4,U (3 jumping crescents) often
does the job (if one hits, a second often hits before they even reach
the floor again).  If they stay down, stop after the first crescent,
as this leaves you with your back turned.  As soon as your opponent
tries to make a move, hit with a low backfist, and add your favourite

If you go for 3~4,U as your opponent rises, they often block high.
Stop at any time, and go for either a low backfist juggle or a back
uppercut juggle.  It's very very hard to counter in time, so most
players have to guess whether to block high or low.

If your opponent rolls back, run at them and jump in with a 4~3
cartwheel kick.  It hits high and often hits.  If it's blocked (or
they stay out of hit range), you may still be able to get a rave spin
from the facedown position (3~4,4) or another cartwheel (4~3).

The elbow drop (u/f+2) hits a floored opponent, but takes a while to
land, so go as early as possible.

The first hit of the rolling kicks (4~4) is probably the fastest way
of doing damage to a floored opponent.  The damage is quite low, but
hitting 3 for a rising low kick afterwoods can push that up a bit,
and you can then repeat the process again until your opponent figures
out how to get out of it (this is really cheap though).

General strategy & tips:

* Don't just do the back-turn techniques after chaining combos, use
b+3+4 to turn your back when facing forward.  As in Tekken 2, this
can transform your counter-attack strategies, as going straight into
a back-turn actually makes Lei step backwards and puts slightly more
distance between you and your opponent.

For example, when playing against a death fist-happy Paul player,
hover about just outside the hit range of his death fist, then
deliberately whiff a short jump kick.  As soon as you hit the ground,
turn your back with b+3+4 and instantly hit d+4,4.  Most Paul players
take the bait when they see your missed jumpkick and fly in with the
death fist.  It's turning your back that moves you slightly out of
reach, allowing your rave spin to hit him instead.

* The guard melting punches (f,N,2,1,2,1 if 1st punch is blocked
high) are still there, but as in Tekken 2 they are easily reversed,
so don't even try it against Jin/Paul/Nina.  If the opponent gets
hit, some of the punches float, so get ready with that rolling kick
as they hit the ground.  If all 4 are blocked, your back is turned,
so go for a back uppercut or rave spin.

* Learn the 4 lie-down positions and how to get into them, and all
the moves that are possible from each position.  You often end up
lying in a strange position after getting knocked down or thrown or
reversed.  Use this to your advantage, don't just get up, you can
often hit them with a cartwheel kick, rave spin, or float with the
double kick.  Sometimes getting MC'd by Paul's death fist can
leave you in the slide position and you can hit him with the slide
(4~3) as he runs up to stamp on you.  The same goes for the
back-turn, if you end up with your back to your opponent without
actually trying to get there, don't turn to face forwards, adapt your
attack strategy: a low backfist juggle, rave spin, or back uppercut
juggle could all be attempted whilst your back is turned.

* As I mentioned before, use stance-switching carefully.  If you do
it all the time, it's going to be of no use (just try it against the
CPU and you'll see what I mean).  Surprise your opponent with a
sudden switch to the tiger stance and you may well get a throw, or
switch to the mantis stance when they're not expecting it and you
stand a better chance of floating with the uppercut.  Drop out of a
punch rush after the 4th hit, switching to the '???' stance:  the
last thing to go through your opponent's head was guessing which
height to block the last kick - they suddenly realise you stopped the
combo early and try to counter, by which time you should have hit
them with the low sweep (this works a _lot_ of the time).

* Use the short jump kick to float!  If you're about to lose a round
by quite a large margin and you need to pull a miracle out of the
bag, run up to your opponent and go for the jump kick.  If it hits,
you may be able to juggle off enough energy to grab a last-minute

* Drink during the neck-shaker throw if your energy is low.
Remember, the energy you get back from the drink is removed from the
damage that you cause your opponent, so it doesn't affect the overall
balance of energy in the game - use it only when necessary.

* Some characters have difficulty hitting Lei while he's down.  Cheap
and cheesy players exploit this by spending 90% of their time lying
down, although personally I think this sucks.  Except for when I do
it =)

Fighting against Lei:

Here's some hints for Lei-haters (and with Lei being more than a
little cheap in Tekken 3, I'm sure there's going to be plenty of

* Whatever your character, learn the move that hits Lei while he's
down.  Paul should use the ground punch, Jin can uses the tooth fairy
or that jumping roundhouse & sweeps combo, King can use the Ali-kick.
Punish him when he lies down, force him to fight standing.

* When he goes into a punch rush, watch out for a stance switch.  If
you have average reaction time, a simple d+2 counter will stop him.
If you're a little more daring, and have fast reactions, you can
often get in a throw or a damaging counter.

* Most Lei players seem unable to go more than 10 seconds without
going into a punch rush.  If they start it from outside of the hit
range, and your character has reversals, reverse him as soon as he
gets close enough.

* When Lei drops into 'play dead' when close to you, you have a 50/50
chance of being hit with either a rave spin or double kick.  Learn
which one your opponent does more of (a good Lei player is the one
who mixes it up exactly 50/50).  If in doubt, block high, as the
double kick sets up juggles and you stand to take more damage if it
hits.  Remember that the double kick can be reversed.

* When Lei plays dead and then rolls towards you, if in doubt, block
low.  He can put a rave spin on the end of the roll, but the only
mid-level strike he can do is a midkick.

* If you block the first hit of a rave spin (blocking low), the
second can be reversed.  It can also be ducked, giving you a free
counter or throw.

* When Lei switches stance, he can still block high (this puts him
back into a regular stance), but AFAIK he cannot block low, so hit
him with something low each time he tries it.

* If he does the 3 stabbing punches from the 'snake' stance, block
high-low-low.  If you block high on the second hit, it appears
to block (you get a blue puff of smoke), but it breaks your guard and
the 3rd hit is guaranteed.

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