This article is part of “Professional Help” an ongoing series of tips and tricks from pro players on their favorite characters.
Kim “SigurRos” Jung Soo is a Korean Street Fighter pro who is known for his god-tier F.A.N.G. He is the number one ranked F.A.N.G. on the Capcom Fighters Network, and is one of the rising stars of the Korean pro scene.
Make sure you check out SigurRos’ Twitch channel for more high-level F.A.N.G. play and more tips.
Thank you to @BurnoutFighter for providing the translation for this article.
SigurRos: First of all, let’s cover F.A.N.G.’s strengths and weaknesses.
F.A.N.G. has one of the longest reaches with his attacks and ‘poison’ property, which is not a common mechanic in many other fighting games.
His character design is very unique, which allows for numerous variables in certain scenarios, which can be troublesome for opponents to deal with.
F.A.N.G’s damage output isn’t actually that good and while he’s very wild in movement and offence, he has limited defensive maneuvres to choose from. This requires the F.A.N.G. player to have maximum dexterity in execution to bring out his full potential.
I would heavily advise to anyone that’s interested in maining F.A.N.G. that he requires greater commitment and endurance to be competitive in comparison to other popular character choices in Street Fighter V.
Here are some pointers to keep in mind at all times while playing F.A.N.G. in tournaments or in ranked battles where points are at stake.
1. Frustrate your opponents with poison
Because F.A.N.G. can use certain special moves to poison the opponent on hit (or even on block with his V-Skill 1), you have to be mindful of which moves apply poison and what your options are afterwards to maintain that poison on the opponent.
Once the opponent is hit with poison, his health bar will glow purple, indicating that there will be a ‘damage-over-time’ property applied on it.
This will fade when F.A.N.G. gets hit. So you have to be agile to dodge, evade, and block your opponent’s pressure while continuing to apply poison on them. This can greatly frustrate the opponent, forcing them to commit to mistakes, which is all the better for the F.A.N.G. player to seek new opportunities in being an absolute annoyance to the opponent. The more angry they get, the better your strategy is working.
2. Master your anti-air options
Like I mentioned earlier, F.A.N.G. doesn’t have many defensive options. You can somewhat normalize this issue by being on point with your anti-air counters.
Thankfully, some of F.A.N.G.’s anti-air attacks are quite optimal in many scenarios where the opponent commits to jumping attacks. If you keep conceding ground to your opponent, it’s probably because you’ve hesitated when you had an opportunity to anti-air.
3. You have really, really, long limbs
Many of F.A.N.G.’s attacks have very good range. By getting used to the maximum reach potential of every move, you can hit buttons where other characters would normally not budge an inch.
Using long reach attacks can often be a surprise attack to some opponents where they won’t expect any attacks to reach if you were an average-sized character.
At the same time, if the opponent seems to recognize F.A.N.G.’s reach, they will show signs of being defensive from further away than usual. This requires you to be exceptional at the neutral game where patience could actually be more beneficial in the long run.
Regardless, it is always good to have some basic information on your opponent’s potential reach, in order for you to narrow down your options and make better decisions when attempting a long-range attack.
4. Save your EX gauge for optimal scenarios
One of the reasons F.A.N.G. is hard to play is the degree of thought required to maximize the potential of his EX special moves and Critical Art. Resource management is key for F.A.N.G. users so they can utilize their EX Sotoja and EX Ryobenda for spacing and cutting off the opponent’s momentum.
F.A.N.G’s CA shouldn’t really be used for combo damage, but rather you can use it for a guaranteed chip damage K.O. after you’ve smothered your opponent with poison damage and brought them down to low health.
5. Keep them cornered at all times
Once you’ve put your opponent in the corner, make it your goal to keep them there forever. Pressuring them in the corner is the best scenario for any character, but it’s crucial for F.A.N.G. as it’s his only opportunity to do any actual damage.
Once you’ve cornered them, be wary of their evasive moves and the range of their attacks and jumps so you can use all the strategies above to keep maintaining your position.
In Street Fighter V lore, F.A.N.G. is a villainous character with evil intent, working in the Shadaloo organization ruled by M. Bison.
You should keep that in mind while playing F.A.N.G., as it may actually help you with how this character is meant to be played. You have to become the most annoying, evil character you can be and the best way to do that is making sure they’re always poisoned, never able to jump at you and once cornered, they have to feel like there is no way out, all while their health is slowly being drained from the poison.
Don’t be a creep in real life, but when it comes to competition be the best villain you can be.
While I love F.A.N.G, my honest opinion on him is that it is very tough to get past the top 8 stage in professional leagues and tournaments, which you can see from tournament results and statistics.
But the reason I keep playing this character is that I want to provide hope and entertainment to viewers at home and for all the fans of Street Fighter V. Playing a weak and unpopular character has obvious consequences but my passion thrives seeing the underdog character in high-level tournaments, and that’s the reason I continue to play fighting games. I also firmly believe that being loyal and caring for your favorite character will show results when it comes to improving your skills in Street Fighter V.
READ MORE: Xian’s pro tips for mastering Ibuki