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Saturday, May 23, 2015

#2DNinjas - TS Ino Guide (2010)

So I know there's probably no one playing this game as of now, but I found, in my PC, this old guide I created back in 2010 for TS Ino in Narutimate Accel 2. It was laying there collecting dust in my folders and since the guide can't be found on the internet anymore, I figured I'd post it here to archive it. Who knows? It might be useful to someone again, someday.


- Has one of the best guard break move in the game.
- Has good damage output with her ougi, jutsu and awakening game.
- Can handle difficult situations rather easily.

- Straightforward character.
- Average defense makes her fragile.
- Limited when it come to useful moves in her arsenal.

Many people overestimate TS Ino. Her ''easy-to-land'' guard break and the follow-ups that has the potential to lead to big damage is the reason why people put her on a pedestal. In competitive play, however, TS Ino is placed at the lowest parts of the mid tier because of how easy it is to find a way around her main tools. Once the solution is found, TS Ino has to rely on her other few and limited offensive tools to crack the opponent's shell, deal damage and finally win the game.

TS Ino is a very straightforward character. For her to be able to deal stable damage and win a match, she will have to rely only on those following moves: 
  • ↓OO  
  • ↑OO
  • [Air] OOO 
  • ↑O Cut-scene jutsu
  • ▲O (Normal/Reversal/Awakening) 

All her other moves are either too unreliable or unsafe to use on a consistent basis and with only a C-class rating in defense, trying to avoid getting punished because of unsafe moves is always the ideal thing scenario for her. That said, when playing with TS Ino, waiting for the opponent make mistakes will be the primary way to deal damage.

TS Ino’s shuriken (or needle) throwing speed is pretty good and the use of that, her safe moves and well timed shuriken cancels (SHCs) will often tempt the opponent to X-Dash through your needles so they can get in and start their offense. This is where Ino’s ↑OO comes into play. By baiting and blocking careless X-Dashes, you will be able to punish them with ↑OO which, if not knj'd (kawarimi no jutsu) or air tech'd, leaves the opponent in a juggle state and open to any sort of attacks which includes Ino's main source of damage : jutsu and ougi. 

Ino’s guard break is amazing. It has a lot of range, priority and the start-up frames are invincible. Those are the reasons why so many people think this move is overpowered. However, in advanced level play, the move is easily avoidable because of the long start-up frames of the move and how the guard+jump option select works in this game. If this counter measure is used, it leaves TS Ino open to an X-Dash punish from the opponent. For that not to happen, properly setting up the guard break is the thing to focus on during neutral.

The first ideal situation is to basically catch the opponent while he is doing something else than blocking. The best example would be during an shuriken/item throwing war. In that situation, most opponents are busy trying to get the edge at neutral by setting up item throws, jumping and throwing shurikens. This is usually where TS Ino has an opportunity to catch them with her guard break. On reaction to whatever the opponent throws at her, TS Ino can use her invincibility frames from her ↓O to go through the thrown item/shurikens and catch the opponent during his throw recovery frames. Easy and simple setup that only requires conditioning. and spacing. 

Second situation is to guard break them while they are still stuck in blockstun. Because of Ino’s supbar normals, setting up blockstun  locks with strings and such is out the question. For that setup to work, she will need to create a blockstun locks with her own needles or the burst shuriken item. Forcing the opponent to block from air-to-ground shurikens is the best way to create this opportunity. By jumping and throwing her needles on her way down, it leaves enough time for the player to land on the ground and catch the opponent still blocking with her guard break. Of course, this requires proper timing (for the needles throw) and spacing as if Ino's too far, the guard break won't reach. 

Ino’s main game relies around her ougi and her ↑O Cut-scene jutsu. Those two moves are her only good damaging moves. However, those two moves rely on the same exact setups for them to hit so which one is better to do in a particular situation? At the end of the day, the answer to this question really only depends on the player’s capabilities and playstyle.

Doing an ougi after a successful setup offers a little more advantage in term of damage when compares to the ↑O Cut-scene jutsu. The ougi, whether the damage is reduced or not, will deal more damage than the cut-scene jutsu and landing it requires less timing from the player because of TS Ino’s huge ougi hitboxes and animations. However, after landing the ougi, cancelled or not, huge amount of chakra will still be lost and Ino will be put in a really awkward situation where charging her chakra back is either risky or not possible. Choosing to have an ougi playstyle solely depends on the player's ability to be consistent with seals and chakra management.

The cut-scene jutsu playstyle is a little more complex, but it is bit more effective than always going for the ougi. First off, the cut-scene jutsu is guaranteed damage as no seal segments means that the damage is always consistent. Secondly, her ↑O start-up is extremely fast which means it is a lot more versatile and creates a lot more damage opportunities for TS Ino. Lastly, after the cut-scene, it leaves Ino in a really great position where the player has a lot of options to choose from depending on how the opponent reacts. If the opponent don’t air tech nor ground tech, Ino can either charge her spent chakra back, go for OTG damage with ↓OO, taunt to awaken or run off to get items. If the opponent wall splats, all the same options apply except that now Ino can go for OTG damage while getting her chakra back by taking dropped chakra balls from the opponent's wall splat. If the opponent techs, it's back at neutral where she can do what she usually do at neutral. The most common cut-scene jutsu/ougi setups are the following :
  • ↓O ~ ↑O 
  • ↓OO ~ ↑O / ▲O
  • (Anti-Air) ↑OO, →, ↑O / ▲O
  • →O ~ ↑O



Unlikely to happen in an actual match but still worth mentioning.
  • OOO↓O ~ ■ (Awakening only)
Aside from ↓O and [Air] O, other normals can be used as pokes. For instance, →O can be used as a long range, grounded poke that can be safe on block if the player backdash cancels the latter part of the string (→OOO~XX). Her hawk [Air] ↓O, although not as great as other character's, can be used in the same way. It's still an high priority move that can be used to approach from the air or stop opposing moves with less priority.

TS Ino's [Air] ↑OO covers a lot of distance in the air for a long period of time. Players can use this move at neutral to either approach the opponent or stall in the air to avoid dangerous things on the ground like time bomb seals. 


vs. Rushdown - Depends on the rushdown character Ino's facing but for the most part, they give a hard time to Ino. Rushdown characters can easily pressure Ino with their plus frame strings and hit very hard. TS Ino's average defense make it so that she can't really take hits from them. Stage selection plays a big role into dealing with rushdown characters as having lot of space to play with and items greatly helps. The Great Naruto Bridge and the Entrance to Orochimaru's Hideout are example of stages that lets Ino breathe a little when playing this archetype.

vs. Chakra Denial - TS Ino has a slight advantage in these match-ups because their goal is to pin their prey down with an infinite, but TS Ino has, arguably, the best escaping move in the game (↓O). Their damage output is also usually not that great so there's not much to fear of when close to them. To some extent, she can even go blow for blow with them.

vs. Rangers & Zoners - Advantageous match-up mainly because of TS Ino's guard break invincibility frames. Instead of using ↓O as a defensive tool like in the Chakra Denial match-ups, the player will use it offensively to get in on its opponent that tries to stay far from him. Most of the time, this move alone will shatter their whole main strategy/approach.

vs. Neutral Oriented - Again, depends on the character she's facing but for the most part, it's an even match-up. It's the opponent's tools against hers, so it depends on who plays neutral the best. Not much to say there.


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