Nightmare Guide for SCV

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[11] Champion
SC5 Nightmare Guide

The purpose of this guide is to help players develop their Nightmare gameplay. This is mostly targeted at newer players or people picking up Nightmare for the first time but it may prove helpful to others as well. This guide shows you the tools available for various tasks and provides brief descriptions of these tools. Tools that all characters possess, such as sidestep, backstep, GI, etc are not listed but their importance should not be overlooked.

The guide will be updated in the future as needed. If any information is incorrect or you have other comments please let me know. If you wish to discuss this guide feel free to post in the Nightmare General Discussion/Q&A thread or contact me by private message etc.

A) Interrupts

Standing Interrupts:
K, 6K, 1K, 3K, 66K, 4KK, 6A, agA, 3AA, BB, 3(B), 9K/9B/66B+K, A+B, CE

FC Interrupts:
6K, FC K, WR K, WR B, FC 3B, 9K/9B/66B+K, CE

Anti Step Tools:
throws, FC throws, 3K, 9K, AA, (A), 6A, agA, 3AA, 22AA, 44A, 1A, 66A, WR A

B) Mixups

Standing Mixup Tools:
1K, 2A, throws, 3K, 3(B), 4K BE

FC Mixup Tools:
FC K, FC A, throws, FC throws, WR (B), FC 3B

Guard Burst Tools:
44A, 22AA, 1(A), BB, 4B, 4BB, 44B, 66B, 22B, GS B, 44K, 22K, 2B+K BE*

Wakeup Tools:
1K, 2B, 2A+B, 66B, 44(B), GS B, GS K BE, FC grab, 3(B), 2B+K BE

C) Punishing

Standing Whiff Punish Tools:
agA, 3AA, 3(B), 1A6, 33B

Sidestep Whiff Punish Tools:
3(B), 33B, 22K

FC Whiff Punish Tools:
WR (B), FC 3B

Standing Block Punish Tools:
K, 6K, 3K, 6B, agA, 3AA, 3(B)

FC Block Punish Tools:
6K, WR K, WR (B), FC 3B

Attack Detail:

K - your fastest move. nothing special otherwise
6K - only 1 frame slower than K but has more range and gives a combo/tech trap on CH
1K - quick i15 low poke, negative on hit and CH but NM can make it dangerous to attack him after this hits by using backdash/sidestep/other various options. has TC
2A - slower than 1K while also having a TC and being negative on hit. does the same damage. It tracks step a bit better than 1K and has faster TC but other than that I'm not sure why you wouldn't just do 1K instead
3K - quick i15 mid that tracks both sides, though it is still possible to step it
66K/66K6 - quick TC and quick hitting mid attack with option to go into GS. this attack is not safe on guard and can be punished by 2A regardless if you GS or not, or even CEed regardless depending on the character
4KK - combo onCH. 2nd hit is high so it can be ducked and punished.
4K BE - unlike 4KK this combos on normal hit and does high damage. the 2nd hit can be ducked and punished with CH launchers because you can't stop the string early
22K - this is a highly damaging combo starter, doing over 80 dmg with a simple 4KK followup. it can be used from a step as a whiff punisher or to build guard gauge. it is quite safe on guard but is rather slow and linear
WR K - this is your fastest mid from crouch at i15 but because it has bad range, no tracking, does low damage, and is -16 on block it is generally a pretty bad move. you should probably be using WR B instead unless you are punishing a low that is too safe for WR B to punish

(A)/AA: this is a decently quick anti step for the speed and you have many potential options including A, AA, AAB, AAB4, A2AA, and (A) to NSS. Not all of these options are good though imo, so I encourage you to decide for yourself if you want to use them. most of the time NM players prefer agA for their step kill needs
6A - quick anti step high that RO opposite side agA does. not safe on guard but distance can make it hard to punish. easy input is a plus compared to agA but generally inferior otherwise
agA - quick high guard break with advantage on guard and big range. there is a JF version of the attack that is more adv. on guard, more dmg, and slightly more range.
3AA - decently fast mid A with big range and good damage. unsafe on guard but if used at max range it is generally safe. it tracks both sides but can sometimes be stepped to one side
22AA - mid A string that combos onCH. first hit is safe on guard and + on hit, second hit knocks down but is unsafe. you can also do a GS with 22AA6 that will cancel the 2nd hit into a GS before it connects. there are a lot of options with this move and it is a large horizontal mid. seems to be one of nightmare's key moves in SC5
44A - very slow mid A that knocks down on normal hit. it is -12 on block but pushes back a lot so it is generally safe. good guard meter damage for an A move
66A/66A6 - slow high anti-step with a GS transition. the range is excellent but shouldn't be used too often as it can be ducked on reaction (though not as easily as 4A...)
1A/1A6 - low sweep slash with good range and high damage. experienced players will block this on reaction easily. the GS is punisable with 2A like all GS transitions on guard, but if blocked from far away and they 2A an expected GS you can 3AA whiff punish them
1(A)/1(A)K - 1(A) gives great advantage on guard, allowing for a GS B frametrap on block, which also builds a guard gauge well. Even if you GS to WR B you will trade or beat Natsu's i10 A, so the advantage is quite huge here. the 1(A)K is to be used when you predict someone will try to jump over the 1(A). unfortunately if they GI it will beat both options, and if your opponent can JG the 1(A) it kinda ruins its usefulness
WR A - damaging anti step option but is rather slow, high, and can be stepped to one side. safe on guard though

BB - combos on counterhit. good speed for the range it has. 2nd hit can be stepped if first is blocked.
3(B) - This is a powerful attack for punishing whiffs but has other applications as well. The move is punishable on block and steppable so do be careful with it. If you are too far away the tip of 3B will cause a stun instead of launching. At this range you may want to consider using 3AA or 33B for whiff punishing instead because the 3B tip hit damage is quite weak. This attack is also unblockable after a successful GI and if you combo to GS K BE you can get a front RO with it. Lastly, this is a good move to use for the final attack to break an opponent's guard meter because it allows you to go into a GS B combo after the guard burst.
44B/44(B) - this attack does good guard damage and tracks the opposite side as GS B when used on wakeup. 44(B) puts the opponent in a crouch on block and NSS K will stuff FC As. normal 44B is safe on guard.
22B/88B - generally speaking, 88B on 1P side and 22B on 2P side have better evasion than their counterparts. the move is not safe on guard but because of pushback it is generally difficult to punish
33B/33B6/33B BE - this is primarily a step whiff punisher though it can also be used from a distance to punish especially bad whiffs. the BE version is not safe and is mostly just to add extra damage to your whiff punish
66B - this attack has exceptionally quick recovery on guard and does good guard meter damage. using backstep and sidestep after this move is guarded can make many attacks whiff, allowing for strong whiff punishment
WR (B) - one of NM's key attacks, this move does high damage on counterhit and is fast enough to punish many lows on guard
FC 3B - slower than WR (B) but has TC, more range, and can RO to one side. does more damage on normal hit as well. very bad on guard. if you hit from far away the attack throw will fail and you will be at negative frames on hit, though because of distance it isn't really a big problem that you're neg frames
GS B - the normal GS B is safe on guard, while the GS B6 is unsafe but has very high damage potential. generally you should use the GS B for safety because the move will usually be blocked rather than hitting. if you are about to guard burst them use GS B6 so that you can get another GS B6 after the guard burst for high damage

A+B - attacks doing 24 dmg or less that are not lows will activate a counterattack if NM is doing his A+B. any further attacks will be auto GIed until the counterattack is released. unlike in SC3&4 this move can now hit grounded opponents
9K - relatively quick jumping mid kick. it gives large + frames on hit and CH knockdown. it also tracks step surprisingly well
9B - for the speed of the TJ this is your strongest jump to punish low attacks. this should mostly be used to punish low attacks in blockstrings. it has good block recovery too which is nice
66B+K - this does not TJ as fast as 9K or 9B but does more damage. it also has pretty good recovery on guard and looks cool (cause that's important)
2A+B - this is a key combo ender as it gives a strong knockdown and gains a lot of super meter for NM
GS K BE - this is another important combo move for Nightmare as it allows him to get front RO and wallsplats from various things
2B+K BE - this attack is + on guard, hitting special mid up close while the tremor is a low hit. be aware that if the opponent only blocks the low tremor part of the move they will take no guard meter damage though NM will still be at frame advantage
FC grabs - these grabs can be blocked low and broken like normal grabs but they TC and can potentially grab opponents out of TC attacks. at i19 they are faster than in SC3&4, making them a viable mixup tool. they can also pickup opponents for rolling on the ground after certain knockdowns like 2A+B attack throw and A grab, giving large frame advantage on pickup.
CE - auto GI vs high/mid/low attacks. loses to throws and CEs. If used carelessly and/or baited the move can be stepped easily and punished hard
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