Posted by: The Stadium | July 19, 2009

Against The Black Knight- M. Bison

Ok, so my next review is M. Bison of the Street Fighter series. I can’t say that I am a big fan of Street Fighter, but I do appreciate Bison as a character.

I’ll start with organization as usual. Bison’s organization is nothing special, though that may be a good thing, as every section is right where it needs to be. I don’t particularly appreciate the headers used, as they don’t really stand out on the black background, but this is a minor issue.

Now for the stats. There is nothing really broken about the character… but no Dash/Dash Attack? Really? The excuse given really didn’t seem to be enough to excuse this. The least you could have done was give Bison a Run Attack.

I rather like the Neutral Special. A powerful, fairly fast, long-distance, and high priority projectile that is balanced by only having one out at a time. Not the most creative move in the world, but it was certainly an interesting idea.

The Side Special is not good… at all. It is very generic, not even variating on the typical distance dash type move by much. On top of this, you used a really bad measurement for speed, as you failed to state whether it is as fast as the uncharged or charged (or something in between) Pikachu’s Skull Bash.

The Up Special is really more like it. It combines a number of good elements, despite seeming simple at first. I see no problems with it’s balance and the move is quite creative and well-detailed.

The Down Special really leaves a lot to read. Really, while the concept of this move is definitely good and unique in the way it works, the big flaw with the move is that you have limited it to once per stock rather than simply making the move more balanced in itself. I can see the reason behind the 1 doll limit, but the once per stock limit just does not seem necessary. Other than that, this move is great for its detail and the way the dolls have a mini moveset of their own. The power attack when they run out of stamina was a nice touch.

The Neutral A is definitely not what you would expect of a Neutral A. It may be fast to start up, but it’s long duration makes it much more punishable then a Neutral A usually is, so good job. This move may actually warrant a damage buff.

The Side Tilt is a good move, for sure. Simple, but the reflection ability of it doesn’t make it fairly creative. The only real problem with the move is that it is quite broken. Low lag on both ends is pretty much necessary for projectile defense, but the move also sports good damage, good priority and good reach. The only “flaw” with this move is it’s low knockback, and even that can be used as a combo tool. Something has to give, right? It wouldn’t make sense for this move to not sport both a good speed and a good reach, so the damage and the priority should be nerfed.

The Up Tilt is somewhat unique in animation but really straight-forward in function. This is, of course, fine in my book. The move is well-balanced.

The Down Tilt is definitely a very creative move, mostly in appearance. If anything, this move is underpowered given that its high lag and the fact that a foe must be standing right next to Bison to take the full power of the attack. I would eliminate this move’s ending lag altogether to ensure Bison isn’t punished even when successful.

The Forward Smash is pretty unique for a kick. I have two problems with this attack. First off, it starts of quick and deals a large amount of damage (if both hits connect). Second off, you don’t state the reach of the attack. It’s hard for me to tell if this is balanced when I can’t tell how far it reaches.

The Up Smash is a pretty unique move. Really there is nothing I can really say about it. It’s balanced, if not somewhat underpowered.

I really like the Down Smash. It combines both a straight-forward use with a trappish use. It’s quite well balanced as well, though you may want to reduce the duration it stays up to 1 second minumum and 4-5 seconds maximum.

The Nair is simple but unique due to its wind effect. It’s a nice move with no noticeable balance issues.

The Fair isn’t generic or creative, really. I would like it a good bit more if it let Bison grab projectiles (probably just physical ones)  and throw them downwards or perhaps use them as a throwing item. This move could use a damage decrease to make up for its ability to be used both offensively and as a counter. 6% might be more appropriate.

The Bair is a cool but simple move. A time-delay Lucario Side B (minus the grab option) of sorts. Nothing really wrong with it balance-wise. I would prefer it if this move gave no visual cue that it was being used until the blast comes out, providing for some mindgame potential.

I don’t know whether to say that the Uair has creativity or not… but I love it! Upside-down Ganondorf Stomp! The extra hitbox helped make this attack a bit more unique as well. Nothing wrong with this move balance-wise.

The Dair is probably the least creative of all of Bison’s aerials. It’s just a stall then fall that can sweetspot the ledge. Something you could do to make this move more unique and useful is to have Bison handstand with the power hand when he hits the ground briefly before jumping back up into the air a portion of the distance he travelled downwards without using up either of his jumps. This could also happen if he hits a foe with it, allowing this to be a high-risk-high-reward recovery option.

The grab and pummel may be really simple, but the throws can be quite entertaining, visually. Unfortunately, you provide little to no reason to use any throw but the up throw, as it outclasses the other both in damage and knockback while still being quite fast.

The Final Smash may be quite cool visually, but it is quite overpowered. 50% damage with the ability to kill at 75%. This may have a short reach for an FS, but even melee reach FS’s don’t normally deal that kind of damage. 40% damage and knockback that KOs at 80% might be more reasonable.

Your Playstyle section is quite helpful. It really shed light on Bison’s strengths and weaknesses. While a bit vague, it did provide some information on how to play as Bison.

Was this a good set? YES! YES! Bison is an impressive set and a huge step up from Cammy. While the set doesn’t necessarily excel in creativity, it provides enough to make it one to consider come voting time. There were few balance issues and most “problems” with the set were really just matters of personal taste. Another person’s review would likely look different from mine in this aspect. This has certainly proved to be an enjoyable read, even from a non-Street Fighter fan such as myself.



  1. thanks for the review chris. I really won’t have much to add to this but…

    both your review & ocon’s didn’t let me off the hook for purposely leaving out the dash attack. from now on, I’ll always be including a dash attack (even though it’s the one single move that I have the most trouble coming up with). for the creativity concerns about the side special, I pretty much had to set creativity aside in order to include bison’s signature move :/

    the down special is a lot of reading of course, but I have gotten a lot of complaints about the once per stock rule. I suppose I could have just depowered the dolls’ moves a bit… but I guess with the high amount of time it takes to summon a doll, the restriction is unnessicary. with the forward tilt, it might have done well with decreased priority & damage, & slightly increased knockback. down tilt could use some buffing as well to make it more useful I guess.

    I stated that bison jumps forward 1 sb block when he uses the forward smash. this was meant to be a good move to rack damage, but punishable if it missed. the down air was definitely the least creative aerial; but the idea you gave for it was pretty cool. The final smash was even more broken before I changed it due to ocon’s review. 40% damage just seems quite low to me for a combo like this; maybe I just could’ve had it do an absurd amount of damage but no KO…

    YES! YES! I’m a bit surprised that you said bison would be “one to consider” when it comes to voting. I plan to make my other sets leave bison in the dust, so I think its a bit early to say that. anyway (god even when I say I don’t have a lot to say I end up rambling on), I’m really glad you enjoyed this set! :bee:

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