If you are entering the world of BlazBlue, and going to join the community, you need to understand our input language! We are different from Street Fighter in button layout and input style, so in turn we have a different way of explaining inputs. BlazBlue uses a four button control scheme. There are two button layouts, which you select upon starting a match. The two layouts are:
Type A Layout (SNK style)
(B) (C) (D)
(A) (x) (x)
Type B Layout (Melty Blood style)
(A) (B) (C)
(D) (x) (x)
A is light, B is medium, C is heavy, and D is Drive.
There's no inherent advantage to either layout, so it's best to try both and see what you prefer.
MOVEMENT AND NOTATION
BlazBlue uses many of the same movement inputs as most 2D fighters.
Move forward: Hold Forward (6)
Move backward: Hold Backward (4)
Run/Dash: Press Forward twice (66)
Backdash: Press Backward twice (44)
Guard: Hold Backward (4) during an opponent's attack
Crouch Guard: Hold Down-Backward (1) during an opponent's attack
Crouch: Hold Down (2)
Jump: Press Up (8)
Double/Triple Jump: Press Up (8) during Jump
Super Jump: From the ground, quickly press Down (2) then Up (8)
Air Dash: Press Forward twice (66) or Backward twice (44) after a jump
BlazBlue's notation is written in the number system used in other ArcSys games, as well as Virtua Figher, Melty Blood, and others. This notation exists for a number of reasons, including but not limited to ease of sharing information between language barriers and writing commands that don't fall under standard QCF-type notation.
Number notation is actually quite simple, as it's just a way of translating joystick directional inputs to the relative position of those inputs on a numpad with 5 being the neutral position.
So effectively, Street Fighter notation as shown below:
(UB) (U) (UF)
(B) (N) (F)
(DB) (D) (DF)
(7) (8) (9)
(4) (5) (6)
(1) (2) (3)
To use common commands as an example, QCF becomes 236, and SRK becomes 623.
(Feel Free to Print This Image for Quick Reference As You Learn)
Similar to the Tension Meter in Guilty Gear, the Heat meter is the meter on the bottom of the screen on the side of your health bar. Techniques such as Distortion Drives and Rapid Cancel require that you have a certain amount of meter. All characters have a Heat Meter except for Hakumen, who uses a time-based orb meter instead.
The red and blue meter unter the timer. The Guard Libra works as a tug of war between you and your opponent; when you guard, it moves towards your side and when your opponent is guarding, it moves to their side. Guarding for too long will result in it to fill completely to one side, resulting in a Guard Crush, which leaves the guarding player vulnerable for a significant amount of time.
The guage under the health bar labeled "Barrier". This regenerates over time and allows you to use Barrier Guard.
Similar to Faultless Defense in Guilty Gear, Barrier Guard is a defensive technique which prevents you from taking chip damage, pushes your opponent back futher than guarding, and drains the Barrier Guage. Barrier Guard doesn't protect you from moves that hit you where you aren't guarding (so if you Barrier high, low moves will still hit you). The input for Barrier Guard is 4 or 1 A+B.
Bursting is a technique which gives your character temporary invincibility. Defensively, bursts can be used to get out of combos. However, because bursting makes you take 30-50% more damage than usual, it's usually not a good idea to burst unless you're very low on health (around 30-15% is a good idea). Offensively, bursts can score a Guard Crush, although you won't be able to kill your opponent off of a combo started off of a Guard Crush.
It should be noted that while Bursts cannot be guarded, they can be Barrier Guarded and Instant Blocked.
The input for Burst is all four buttons at once (A+B+C+D).
In BlazBlue, all throws are commitment-based, meaning that you get punished with recovery for whiffing throws. While throws can be teched, they cannot be guarded (even if you're using Barrier Guard). All throws in BlazBlue are B+C (plus a set of directional inputs for command throws).
To perform a Throw Reject, press B+C once during the period of time "!!" appears over your character's head. It's important to only press B+C once because if the game reads more than one B+C input, your Throw Reject will fail. While command throws are techable in this game (if they were comboed into or if you were thrown during guardstun), throws that land as counter hits are not. In the latter case, a red X will appear over your character in addition to the "!!".
When throws are landed outside of combos and/or guardstun, the green "!!" will appear over the character being thrown, indicating that the throw can be broken within 12 frames. When throws are comboed into or when a player is thrown during guardstun, the pink "!!" will appear over the player being thrown, and those throws have a window of 27 frames to be broken.
Much like Guilty Gear's Roman Cancel, Rapid Cancels will cut the recovery of a connected move at the cost of 50% meter and return your character to a neutral position. The input for Rapid Cancel is A+B+C.
Similar to Dead Angle Attack in Guilty Gear, Counter Assult is a way to break out of pressure at the cost of 50% meter. The input for Counter Assault is 6 A+B while guarding.
Every character's attacks executed by pressing the D button are called their Drive moves. These differ between characters, so likewise, they all have their different uses.
Every character in BlazBlue has a taunt, but some characters actually have unique properties useful mid-battle with the taunt. Taokaka's is most prominent for big damage, Arakune's can summon a bug during curse, and Makoto can chuck an acorn...
BlazBlue's super. A character-specific input that initiates a very powerful move that consumes 50% meter.
Character-specific instant kills that consume 100% meter. In order for your Astral Heat to work, you have to a) be fighting in the last round of the match and b) make sure your opponent has at least 20% of their health left. In the arcade version, only Ragna, Rachel and Nu have Astral Heats- in the console version, however, everyone has one.