Last week, I actually talked about which characters desperately needed to get stronger in Street Fighter V. Well, the opposite is definitely true on the other spectrum. There are just some characters in Street Fighter V that Capcom really need to tone down. It just seems like you can just abuse some of their moves ad nauseam without fear of retaliation.
So, in the hopes of evening out the playing field, so to speak, let’s go look at five characters that Capcom need to nerf just every so slightly so they don’t just run over their opponents without any real skill. As much as I hate some of these characters, let’s not nerf them to declawed kittens, okay? Just weaken them ever so slightly just so they aren’t the overpowered beasts that they currently are.
Anyway, here are my suggestions that needs nerfs and what is needed to be nerfed!
Let’s go start out with the biggest dog, shall we?
It’s no surprise that Urien is on this list. He’s probably the guy that’s giving players the most problems. He was already really good is Season 1. But Capcom decided it wasn’t enough and decided to give the Illuminati’s second-in-charge some really powerful attacks to compliment his already really powerful attacks! And the one that Urien players love to abuse is his standing Hard Punch and for good reason: the reward for connecting with it is just so high.
The only weakness the move has, this move that requires only one button to open up a world of hurt on his opponent, is that it’s slow. Other than that, Urien’s standing Hard Punch is godlike. It has great range, is safe on block and can cause a Crush Counter state leading to a really damaging combo. So, the first thing to nerf is definitely this move. But how exactly?
Well, for one, I would like to see Capcom adjust how much recovery it has. I’ve been smacked by this attack so many times I actually researched on why it’s overpowered. Well, one good reason is that it stays out longer at 3 frames. Capcom could shorten it to just 2 frames so that it doesn’t stick out the attack frames for too long. Also, make it unsafe on block. In fact, give it a recovery animation when someone blocks it, like the way Ryu or Vega/Claw has to reel back when someone blocks their version of a standing Hard Kick. Make it so that someone can counterattack a poorly time Urien standing Hard Punch.
Also, I would like Capcom to weaken his V-Trigger ability, the Aegis Reflector. I just don’t like the way Urien can throw this out and just restrict his opponent’s movement immediately. I don’t want to make any radical changes to it like giving him only one Aegis Reflector instead. I want Urien to keep the core element of his V-Trigger, putting up an obstacle for his opponent to navigate through as well as giving him an offensive tool, but reduce the defensive aspect. Basically, I would like to see that the Aegis Reflector vanish if Urien gets hit cleanly. This would be a great reward for an Urien opponent for actually continuing the pressure and also punish a careless Urien player as one of his tools gets wiped off the board.
There are probably a few more nerfs I can think of for Urien. I may even be able to do an entire post just detailing nerfs I would like to see him get! But I’ll just mention these two and move on.
Even if he’s my current main, I will say that Guile is a bit too powerful and deserves to be weakened a smidge. Actually, I would just want to see an adjustment to his V-Trigger. Capcom decided to make his V-Trigger 2 bars in Season 2 from 3 bars in Season 1. I understand why this is as Guile actually has less health on average than the other characters. But his V-Trigger is one of the scariest ones in Street Fighter V, especially if he activates while you’re stuck in the corner.
Honestly, I would want it if they made it 3 bars again. It doesn’t really hurt the family man all that much to revert it back to its Season 1 state since his V-Skill, the Sonic Blade, is a very cool one that’s super effective. At the proper distances, you can really mix up your opponent by varying what Sonic Boom you pair with it, leading to them getting hit by it and, in turn, fill Guile’s V-Trigger meter. It seems like a good compromise as it would follow characters who have this kind of power up ability like Urien and Ryu.
The problem with depowering Laura is that, while she seems super strong to some, I think it’s actually difficult for a Laura player to get in. She has a lot of ways to get in because of her V-Skill and her dashing elbow strikes. But someone with good reactions should be able to keep her out. So, nerfing her would be a delicate process.
But I think why people are having difficulty facing her is that, when Laura gets in, she’s in there. She’ll keep on hitting you with light kicks relentlessly and pour on the pressure. She’s consistently mix up those attacks with a throw to keep her opponent guessing and then she’s just reset the entire situation and repeat.
I would be fine if they just did something with Laura’s throws. Even after a command throw, Laura can easily go in once again and continue the pressure. I think they could normalize her by just adjusting her recovery after a successful throw just a tad. Keep the distance she throws her opponent away but just adjust how fast Laura’s recovery. Make it so she can’t just rush in immediately. That would keep her pressure ability but it wouldn’t be too smothering as it is right now.
Balrog/Boxer was already kind of scary in Season 1 but Capcom made a few little adjustments to him, making him truly frightening in Season 2. The problem is these little changes aren’t really all that apparent on the surface. They’re just minor changes to his normal attacks, which did seem to add up in making the Raging Buffalo a more buffed out character.
The only thing I could think of that you can actually nerf with Balrog/Boxer is his EX Dash Straight. It’s just an incredibly great move that comes out really fast and is also a great frame trap. I would just reduce its block stun so that it isn’t too safe when his opponent defends against it. Don’t make it a frame trap as it’s a great move to get in as it is.
Although he was just introduced in Season 2, I can already see Akuma being a problem in the future. Yes, he has the lowest health in the game so he’s technically “weak” already. But the Raging Demon’s moveset is incredibly good and he can string in some really damaging but rather easy combos that it’s a problem to actually hit him to reduce that low health to zero!
My biggest issue with Akuma is that practically all his moves are safe on block and, in fact, are all frame traps. Now that’s just unfair! I don’t care if he has the lowest health in the game. That’s just too much! This means that if Akuma gets in one move, his opponent will be trying to block an entire sequence of safe attacks before he can try to counter. This means he’ll be nursing an enormous amount of white health while doing so. Oh, and then Akuma throws him so all that while health gets zapped out of existence instantly. It’s just a little too much.
I think Akuma’s normals should be adjusted so that they aren’t frame traps. I’m fine with making them safe on block and bumping up Akuma’s health a bit to normalize the nerf. But don’t let Akuma just be a pressure monster you can’t escape from.
So, those are my suggestions on what to nerf on some of the characters. I don’t particularly like nerfs since they take away tools a character has. But I think these are necessary to ensure that every other character doesn’t have to get buffed too much as well. Buffing and nerfing is a delicate balancing act and Capcom has their work cut out for them. I just hope they make it fun for the rest of the characters and not just the five noted above.
Who else do you think Capcom needs to nerf in Street Fighter V? How would you nerf them? Let me know in the comments section below!