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JoyRaines

DDFF Kuja Guide by JoyRaines

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JoyRaines    8

Hi, this guide is for those who are interested in the competitive scene of DDFF so I will focus on PvP (Player vs Player) builds and specific match ups.

Content :

  • Brief explanation on how Kuja works
  • Assists
  • Set A : EX Depletion, Damage, EX Force build
  • Set B : EX Core build
  • Set C : Assist Depletion, Damage, EX Force build
  • Set D : Bravery Boost on Dodge build
  • Match Ups & Tips

I - The Graceful Glider

Kuja has different ways to trigger his bravery attacks' follow-ups depending on how distant you and your opponent are. This means that you can use the directional buttons (up and down) to decide which follow-up you want to do.

For example if you are using Strike Energy and want to use the melee follow-up first press the directional button (up) and press "O" just after while pressing "up". If on the contrary you want the range follow-up press down and press "O" just after while pressing "down".

This pattern works for several of his attacks as Snatch Shot, Snatch Blow and Burst Energy.

As for his glide abilities remember that if you decide to use them you will not be able to perform Descent Speed Boost even if you equip it. But I will talk about match ups about whether you have to equip any glide abilities or not in the "Match Ups" part.

II - Assists

- Sephiroth : He's very reliable, you can use him in small stages as in larger ones because you will always get a chase option from him, be it from a ground bravery attack or from an aerial one.

- Aerith : If you prefer to gain EX Force easily then she is your best choice and she cannot be locked by an assist change Lv1 or 2 when she performs an attack with one assist bar so it's a safe option as well as an efficient way to gain EX Force.

- Zidane : Wall rushes are usually guaranteed if you use him in small stages however it is not always the case in larger ones so in the end it depends on your playstyle. He's a reliable assist if used correctly and you can trick opponents with his Lv2 assist HP in midair for punishes.

- Kefka : I personally didn't try this assist but the comboes you can do with him are very interesting (props to Mericus for that). Look for "ShadowFlareSpam" YouTube channel  to see how this assist can work with Kuja.

III - Set A : EX Depletion, Damage, EX Force build

3Qjh969022h3xF.png

Use the CP glitch to be able to equip Lufenian Dirk and Lufenian Vest (see this thread to know how to http://dissidia.community/topic/19-ddffguide-equip-anything-without-using-cp-like-bartz-labyrinth-bug/)

Seal of Lufenia set effect : EX Depletion +5%

This set can help you against fast EX-builders characters and provides you decent damage with Lufenian Dirk which gives you +1 ATK. Battle Hammer is mandatory for Assist Depletion with a few boosters for decent depletion. Your goal as a player is to make sure your opponent doesn't have any assist available so you can pressure him and keep that advantage throughout the match if possible.

It is a hybrid build which merges damage and EX Force so if you prefer to run a better EX build replace Hyper RIng and Earring with Glutton and White Gem for example (that is if you want to keep depletion as well).

Pros :

  • Decent Assist Depletion
  • Good EX Depletion
  • Good EX Force generated
  • Good bravery damage

Con : Low bravery base

IV - Set B : EX Core build

g597k69037pcHq.png

Use the CP glitch as mentioned above (III) for the appropriate equipment.

Soul of Yamato set effect : LUK+3 / Regen+20% / HP to BRV (you gain BRV if your HP is full) / EX Core Appearance Boost  

This can cause Exdeath players a lot of trouble because the character has a very slow dash speed so you would normally always have the advantage at gathering EX Cores. You can enter in EX Mode several times during a fight with that build but use your EX Mode wisely as you are not in safety if you have not a full EX bar.

As you can see this set has no EX Depletion nor Assist Depletion since Exdeath's probability of having a full EX bar is low if you manage to do your job and on top of that he doesn't care about  Assist Depletion for he can simply build assist meter safely and whenever he wants.

You can also run this build against any campy-style players who don't necessarily use Exdeath but it is pretty risky against other characters since you do not have any depletion.

Pros : 

  • Excellent EX Core absorption
  • Very good EX Core appearance boost

Cons :

  • No EX Depletion
  • No Assist Depletion

V - Set C : Assist Depletion, Damage, EX Force build

cFlt26904J4BgZ.png

Use the CP glitch as mentioned above (III) for the appropriate equipment.

Judgement of Lufenia set effect : Assist Depletion +15%

If you think your opponent run a Side By Side build with a specific character then use this build to force him to be on the defensive if you happen to confirm any HP attack because he can end a match quickly because of that build at the cost of gaining no EX whatsoever.

Dismay Shock is here in case your opponent does not have Side By Side so you can still decrease your enemy's EX bar to prevent any EX Mode/Revenge. It is mandatory to have it because our community's meta game is highly focused on Depletion (both EX and Assist).

Pros :

  • Good Assist Depletion
  • Good EX Force generated

Con : Lower EX Depletion

VI - Set D : Bravery Boost on Dodge build

N6oIK6905eMn5Z.png

Use the CP glitch as mentioned above (III) for the appropriate equipment.

Adamant Chains set effect : BRV Boost on Dodge +8% / Slight Midair Evasion Boost effect

It is recommended to use it with Midair Evasion Boost, Evasion Boost and Precision Evasion against fast characters as Onion Knight, Zidane, Squall and Prishe. Simply because you need to have a high evasion boost to be able to keep up with their fast bravery attacks so as a result you increase your movement distance as well as your invincibility duration and thus slightly lower your chances of being hit. Be careful : you will probably not see much difference but this may save you from dodge punishes from your opponent and this can be crucial in a match.

Pros :

  • High Evasion Boost
  • Bravery Boost on Dodge + 10% in total
  • Very good EX Force generated thanks to Aerith assist, TA and Glutton

Cons :

  • Low EX Depletion
  • Low Assist Depletion

VII - Match Ups & Tips

1.  I recommend you to use Snatch Shot and not equip Snatch Blow with it against most melee characters because they can easily block Snatch Blow on reaction. However I recommend you to use Snatch Blow against the following mage characters :

- Ultimecia : It can pass through her Charged Lance if she doesn't release it when Snatch Blow is about to hit her otherwise you will get staggered.

- The Emperor : It bypasses all of his traps so this makes the match up entirely in Kuja's favor.

2.  Use your glide abilities against the following characters :

- Firion : In order to avoid Straightarrow, it's crucial against spammers.

- Kain : Always keep some distance by floating around to avoid his Jumps and thus negate his pressure game.

- Golbez : Stay in midair and try to lure him in aerial combat which is his weakness. However beware of his Glare Hand ; it's a fast ground bravery attack and has a decent range so be as high as possible.

3. Burst Energy is useful against nearly all characters (if not all) because it's a fast bravery attack so you can build assist safely. Besides you avoid the risk of being block punished for it is a magical attack. It has a short range so always keep an eye on the distance between you and your opponent.

4. Strike Energy should always be used in any match up, it works a bit like Burst Energy except that it can be blocked. However it is Kuja's most efficient bravery attack when it comes to punish enemies. On top of that it deals the best damage comparing to his other moves.

5. Flare Star is a must if you have to retaliate after a successful block on your part or if you expect a block from your opponent. You can also use it after using one of the assists as mentioned in the beginning of this guide.

6. Ultima can punish bad dodges from your enemy if you have analyzed his fighting pattern but it isn't mandatory as Flare Star. It depends on which attack you prefer to use. However I'd recommend it against ground campy characters such as Golbez or Firion for instance.

7. Seraphic Star can be used in any stage so if you have a good approach with it go ahead since it's a good punishing move as long as you take its range into account.

8. Force Symphony can put a lot of pressure vs Golbez if he's on the ground. Hence it's a good tactic if you want to lure him in aerial combat. Use it also against Exdeath just because it's a "one-hit HP move" meaning that it deals directly HP damage instead of a few bravery blows before the HP damage is dealt. As a result, it will be very hard for Exdeath to "Omniblock" it.

9. Here is a short list of what you should equip in your Extra Abilities :

- Precision Evasion

- Counterattack

- Sneak Attack

- Riposte

- Disable Sneak Attack (your opponent cannot use his SA critical bonus against you)

- EXP to Assist / HP

10. You don't need to equip any ground abilities with Kuja as you will always fight in midair. It can save you a lot of CPs.

Alright this concludes my guide on Kuja. Feel free to adapt these builds to your liking depending on your match up approaches and I hope I could enlighten you somehow.

Edited by JoyRaines
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As far as your matchups are considered Joy, I think you've grossly misunderestimated the use of snatch blow against some melee characters.

Against tidus, for example, shot does nothing that can be entirely useful. Tidus can dash at you endlessly with his superior speed, but you can punish hopstep on prediction with snatch blow, and you can punish full slide with it.

I personally RARELY equip shot unless I'm facing a character that tries to camp me out, but isn't exclusively magic related. Examples might be garland, Onion Knight (but snatch blow is better in this MU), Kain, Cloud, and basically anyone who has trouble dashing in and punishing it, exclusively. 

I think you grossly underestimate it's power as a punish tool against even some melees, especially those who are hyper fast and can't be handled with snatch shot alone.

TL;DR Snatch shot is easily dashable by a good chunk of melee characters, and in these matchups I highly suggest using blow for it's ranged punish over snatch shot because it can be used more effectively.

 

Also you should mention that serraphic is basically the HP variant of snatch blow, and that mixing it up with snatch blow can catch blocks that expected snatch blow, leading to a very strong ranged punish mixup for Kuja.

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JoyRaines    8

I don't agree with your opinions, although legit at some point. You talk about mixups with Seraphic Star. It is interesting however you can dodge Seraphic Star on reaction and players who knows Kuja's moves and once see that you made a Snatch Blow attempt they will expect it next time and block it on reaction. And since it is easy to block it Kuja will be at a disadvantage since he can be punished by a HP attack if Snatch Blow is blocked. So in the end it is wiser to use Snatch Shot because it has a magical property and therefore you cannot be staggered if it is blocked or reflected. It is safer to use it instead of Snatch Blow and you can still punish a bad dodge from your opponent with it.

Everyone can dash through Snatch Shot since it's a low magical bravery attack however the risk of being punished by using Snatch Blow over Shot is higher. As a consequence one should always use Snatch Shot against melees.

Edited by JoyRaines
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I'm only going to respond to one of the points you've made, as I feel there's no need to argue the others further, but I want to talk briefly about seraphic.

Mixing up seraphic is more to land people who are blocking heavily, expecting the snatch blow. I feel like I didn't REALLY ellaborate, but you ARE right that it wont work unless they predict block the snatch blow. That's my only thought here, I've used it myself as a mixup tool quite a lot, and it's generally safe in most situations. I just thought it was an interesting mention is all.

It could still be useful vs mages.

Edited by Terramorphic
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Mericus    10

Just for clarification's sake... ,

1 : Kefka Assist on Kujie-koo will consistently Combo with EVERY HP ( Force / Flare Star / Seraphic / Ultima ) with practice.
2 : Never use Kefka Assist on Pandae / Kefka's Tower / Phantom Train , as the Walls AND Ceilings will very often de-spawn ECF.

Seraphic Star is good yes, but not a good " Mixup " , but can be used as a good Tool on your opponent's Wakeup after a Horizontal Wall Rush only. I was working on a video showcasing it, but my computer blew up and I lost all my replays + I've nobody to play with nowadays :/

tbh...,  
the game at 30 FPS Lock makes Mixups quite non-existent as there is far too much time to react > Dodge accordingly, and imo Flare Star is the closest you'll get if you learn to REACT to an opponent's terrible Block.
xlXC5MU.png

Snatch Blow should only ever be used in either the Kuja Mirror, vs Ulti ( still on the fence about using it for her ) , or vs Emp ( and tbh... what Kuja loses that MU ? lol ). It's pretty dang useless vs the rest of his MUs and you don't want to only have 1 Close Range BRV as both Strike + Burst have different applications for Locking Assists / at close range as your opponent should constantly be on Rushdown vs Kuja making SB obsolete in those scenarios.

I kinda feel like I'm repeating things already said on our old Forum,
but if you want more input , then I highly suggest checking DF posts by Kuja users there as well.

I'll add more data including Custom Combos + MUs to help when I have the time.
( Lost my Build images too , so I'll post em later -_-; ) 



Nice Beginners Guide JoyRaines !
keep it up ^^

Edited by Mericus
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JoyRaines    8

Thanks for the compliment and thank you for providing info on Kefka assist's pros and cons. I will take a look on DF posts about Kuja and see if I can add more things or not.

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Mericus    10

All around Build focused on Balance :

35VBNIo.png

Basic Abilities :

-Ground Evasion
-Midair Evasion
-Ground Block
-Midair Block
-Controlled Recovery
-Glide
-Wall Jump
-Free Aiir Dash
-Free Air Dash Boost
-Assist Gauge Up Dash
-Glide Boost
-Speed Boost++
-Jump Boost++
-Ground Evasion Boost
-Midair Evasion Boost
-Evasion Boost

Support Abilities :

-Always Target Indicator
-EX Core Lock On
-Auto Assist Lock On
-Auto Recovery

Extra Abilities :

-Precision Evasion ( literally the best use of CP in the game as P Evade is AMAZING )
-Achy+
-Counterattack
-Sneak Attack
-Disable Counterattack
-EXP to HP

Edited by Mericus

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Mericus    10

Adamant Chains Set for Dodge Distance+ and BRV+ on Dodge :
( Very useful vs Sephy and Jecht.)

WpawrVP.png

Basic Abilities :

-Ground Evasion
-Midair Evasion
-Ground Block
-Midair Block
-Controlled Recovery
-Glide
-Wall Jump
-Free Aiir Dash
-Free Air Dash Boost
-Assist Gauge Up Dash
-Glide Boost
-Speed Boost++
-Jump Boost++
-Ground Evasion Boost
-Midair Evasion Boost
-Evasion Boost

Support Abilities :

-Always Target Indicator
-EX Core Lock On
-Auto Assist Lock On
-Auto Recovery

Extra Abilities :

-Precision Evasion ( obviously :p )
-Achy+
-Counterattack
-Sneak Attack
-Disable Counterattack
-EXP to HP






Assist Choice is always up to you, but I prefer Kefka and his Setups.
I'll add my Anti-Exdeath Build if needed, but I hope these help out.

Edited by Mericus

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JoyRaines    8

So you use jump boosts with Kuja, interesting. I wonder how you manage to take advantage with this since I never used it with him. Do you expect to bait blocks from your opponent by using jumps?

If it's necessary to have it for his bad match ups then I would equip it as well.

Edited by JoyRaines

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Mericus    10

It's for more EX Mode damage + Kuja's Jump++ / Descent Speed allows him to Jump high enough that he won't need to Dodge some attacks and Punish Grounded Melee attackers with Burst Energy's Vertical Tracking since he won't be mid-Dodge Animation. There are also a few Spells / ranged attacks characters can avoid just by Jumping too.

So it's a Spacing Tool that helps avoid using his Dodge as it's the worst / most Punishable Dodge in the game along with Emperor's.
Glide is also there for that reason and you can spot bad Dodges > go EX Mode > Glide Punish the Dodge and Combo into Flare Star with no Assist required.

Speed++ has a slight effect on his Passive Glide during all of his attacks and depending on circumstances / the MU , you can threaten them on the Ground.

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monxstar    0

I use ultima over seraphic star for enemies who can punish with HP's after an assist confirm in the ceiling. I noticed he can be easily punished if he uses Flare star or seraphic star.

Also, is this combo useful assuming your brv gets back to full or most of it back:

Aerith assist->Force Symph->Aerith->Force Symph
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Quote

Support Abilities :

-Always Target Indicator
-EX Core Lock On
-Auto Assist Lock On
-Auto Recovery

I thought auto recovery was bad?

Edited by monxstar

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Mericus    10
1 hour ago, monxstar said:

I thought auto recovery was bad?

Not with Controlled Recovery no.
I generally prefer it as Recovery Attack requires a Whiff and certain attacks and Assists will Reset Combos causing you to receive more damage.

Niether are bad, just be sure Recovery Attack is worth it in the MU and if not , use Auto ^^

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MLSabre    1
On 2016-10-09 at 11:59 AM, monxstar said:

I thought auto recovery was bad?

It could be if opponents abuses empty chases to absorb all ex forces. Nothing can be about it for those who equipped Auto Recovery.

Edited by MLSabre

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