Sailor Moon S

Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon S: Jougai Rantou!? Shuyaku Soudatsusen (Sailor Moon S) for Super NES is a 2D fighter that embodies the old saying "if everything is broken, nothing is broken". To enjoy this game you need to embrace and abuse the mechanics. All blockstun can be canceled to punish any attack. But then every normal attack can be canceled to be made safe. Damage is huge and matches can end quickly. Sailor Moon S has a dedicated community because there is nothing that plays like it.

Helpful Resources

The Sailor Moon S wiki.
The Moonlight Fight Society Discord server.

Notation

Attack Notation

LP Light Punch
HP Heavy Punch
LK Light Kick
HK Heavy Kick

Directional Notation

up-back up up-forward
back neutral forward
down-back down down-forward

Numpad Notation

7 8 9
4 5 6
1 2 3

High attacks are overhead attacks that must be stand blocked. Mid attacks are attacks that can be blocked with both stand block and crouch block.

Sailor Moon S uses Legacy frame data notation. If an attack has 7 frames of startup, it hits on the 8th frame.

Backdashes are temporarily invincible. Forward dashes aren't universal as only a few characters have them. Backdashes are considered airborne, allowing air special attacks to be performed during them.

This game's guard cancel is a true guard cancel. During blockstun, you can choose what to cancel your blockstun into. It is not a predetermined attack out of blockstun like an Alpha Counter. Blockstun can be canceled into any dash, special attack, or super attack. Everything can be guard canceled.

Pressure is never guaranteed because all blockstun can be canceled into an invincible attack or invincible backdash. Attacks that would otherwise be completely safe are now punishable because of guard cancel. Blocked jumping attacks can be still anti-aired because of guard cancel.

Every normal attack can be canceled into a special attack or dash when it connects for no cost. This potentially makes every normal attack in the game safe on block.

Because characters are backdashing all the time, you need to learn to chase backdashes. One way to beat them is by guard canceling your blockstun into a special attack that will catch it. Another way is to make the attack whiff because whiffed attacks cannot be canceled.

In this game, Player 1 and Player 2 have different advantages and disadvantages. One of the things that Player 2 has is they get full invincibility for reversal backdashes. This means Player 2 can wakeup backdash and cancel their backdash into another backdash, blocking, or an invincible throw.

There is no damage scaling, which results in combo damage being very high. There is bonus damage for counter hits. There is also bonus damage for hitting your opponent's head. These bonuses stack. If you get a counter hit AND hit your opponent's head, it's going to do a lot of extra damage.

Throws are proximity throws performed with 4/6 and HP or HK. Pummel throws exist as well. Throws hit on the 1st frame and can be used by the defender to throw mistimed meaties or gaps in blockstrings. You'll see this because the defender is fully invincible on the first wakeup frame after a knockdown. Don't stand too close when pressuring or you could get thrown.

Instead of throw teching, there is throw softening that is performed with two button inputs pressed not at the same time. You press one button then a different button immediately afterwards. Or you can press the same button twice as long as there is at least a 1 frame gap between the button presses.

There are some differences between Player 1 and Player 2 when it comes to throws. If Player 1 and Player 2 throw at the same time, Player 1 wins. Player 1 can cancel their dash's recovery into a throw. Player 2 is invincible after softening a throw. After Player 1 softens a throw, they are vulnerable for 1 frame upon landing.

Every character has a Desperation Attack available to them when their health falls below 20%. Desperation Attack is also available to both characters when there is less than 10 seconds left on the game clock. You can tell when a character is able to perform one when they look tired. Desperation Attacks are the game's super attacks. You have an unlimited amount of Desperation Attacks but many characters have unsafe ones that can't be spammed.

The command for Desperation Attacks is a motion and HP and/or HK. The command may overlap with the throw command, creating an option select. I'll use Jupiter's Desperation Attack command as an example. It's performed 2141236HP. Because 6HP is also the throw command, Jupiter will throw her opponent if she's close enough. If she's too far away, she will perform her Desperation Attack.

Characters

Mercury has two different fireballs for zoning. Her walkspeed is the fastest. 5LK has good range. Because of 5LK and her walkspeed, her tick throw is game is strong. Her sweep is very fast. She can jump off the wall and jump HK is a nice cross-up.

Venus' whip gives her normal attacks a lot of range. Jump HP is a good air poke and an instant overhead. Her two fireballs are pretty fast. Her corner control is very strong. She can stand at a range where she can bait guard cancels from her opponent. She can cancel the last hit of HK pummel throw into a special attack. Her whip special attack has invincibility, is a good anti-air for cross-ups, and does chip damage. Her fireball shoots at an upward angle and gives a lot of frame advantage. Her DP covers both sides.

Sailor Moon has fireball mixups and setups. Her grounded fireball is one of the fastest in the game. HP throw cannot be softened. She has a DP. Her forward dash helps her get out of the corner. Heart fireball is done in the air and has short recovery, allowing her to mixup after it. A basic setup is knockdown with sweep, cancel the sweep into backdash, do heart out of backdash, then forward dash for a cross-up or jump in mixup.

Chibi Moon is a tiny character that does little damage but is difficult to catch. She's so small she can low profile under attacks. Jump LK is an instant overhead. She has a double jump and a divekick special attack. That means she can block an attack, guard cancel it into a backdash to go airborne, then divekick to move herself. She relies on tick throws to deal damage but fortunately her throw can't be softened. Her Desperation Attack is full screen, does a lot of chip damage, and is very spammable.

Chibi Moon can cancel her backdash into another backdash to stay invincible forever. With a life lead she can force a timeout with this. It's not easy to do and even the best Chibi players mess it up. Beat this by hitting Chibi with a cross-up.

Mars is a zoner that controls horizontal space. Her fireballs knockdown. She has anti-airs for many ranges. HP throw cannot be softened. Wheel kick special attack is for ending combos. Her Desperation Attack is a fireball that can be spammed over and over again. Unfortunately, she lacks high/low mixups as she doesn't have any low attacks that knockdown.

Jupiter's walkspeed and jump are very slow so she relies on her specials attacks to control space. Her spinning special attack is used as movement and goes through fireballs. She has two very good fireballs, one grounded and one in the air. She's got great normal attacks. Even though she is a zoner, she has a command throw. That really helps her defense because she can guard cancel any blockstun into her command throw.

Uranus has a very powerful command throw that gives her probably the best guard cancel option in the game. She has a very far forward dash that helps her get in easily. She can cancel any normal attack into forward dash whenever she wants. She can shoot a full screen fireball and dash after it for a safe approach. She has a slide. She has an infinite combo with 2LP > 2HP > 66.

Neptune has fast walkspeed and long legs for pokes. Jump LK can be used as an instant overhead. Close HK is a grounded overhead that she can combo off of as all normal attacks are cancelable. She has a 3 frame invincible DP. She has a fireball but it's too slow to zone effectively. However, her slow fireball, fast DP, and safe jumps make her corner pressure one of the best in the game.

Pluto's scepter gives her some great pokes with great range. 5HK has tremendous range. 5LP and 2LP are the longest ranged jabs in the game. Both attacks can be canceled into tornado and all that chip damage slowly adds up. The range on her pummel throw is very good. Her pole vault special is an overhead. Her fireball is okay. Her Desperation Attack is one of the best as it's fast and combos from almost everything.