As with most games, blocking beats attacks, and throwing beats blocking. Overheads are often added to games to give another option for beating blocking by creating a guessing game (mix-up) situation where you may either attack high or low.

Monster also comes equipped with both throws and overheads, and to make things interesting, it also allows you to dash cancel your attacks into command attacks (dash attacks). Many new-comers to Monster may be the victim of block strings that lead to alleged guessing games. However, Monster has it's own set of rules that govern block strings and overheads.

First of all, the majority of overheads in this game can't truly be comboed, they are links -- The exception to this is Ryuogen and Othello, but I'll go over that later. So, because they aren't true combos, option selecting beats out a lot of loose mix-up situations. We'll use some quick examples with Katze and Siely to demonstrate a point.

Katze can do his normal attack chain and then dash cancel into his dashing C, which is an overhead, or he can dash into his crouch-dashing (sliding) C, which is a low attack. His overhead also gives him quite a bit of frame advantage, so even if it's blocked he can continue the string with another set of attacks looping back to the overhead. However, being that the overhead is rather telegraphed, a simple option select beats this "mixup". To do this, all the player has to do is wait for the right time to do a few simple A attacks to either block or knock Katze out of his overhead, a very simple yet effective technique. On top of that, the overhead is both noticeably audible and visual, so a mindful player should have no trouble dealing with it.

Siely on the other hand, takes to the air any time she dashes, and she can attack very low to the ground. But again, a simple option select beats out most of her attack mixups. All a player has to do is be mindful of when the attacks occur, and stick out A attacks in between hits. If Siely takes to the air then the A attacks will knock her down.

Of course, the point is rather moot since an experienced player will be mindful of the point system and be on the look-out for potential powerbreaks. After all, if you're successfully blocking then you're building points, and even when you're not blocking correctly you don't lose your points. Thus, proper use of Shift will enable players to deal with rushdown.

Back-dashing and backdash->shifting are also rather effective for wake-up games (getting up off the ground) when the opponent has the advantage of planting a meaty high/low mixup.

However, there is another option, which is Tranquility. Tranquility gives most characters auto-guard on their special moves, making them quite good for dealing with rushdown.

Players who favor Katze should also be familiar with the fact that Katze's DP move persists and trades with just about anything in the game, allowing him to stuff a lot of mixup situations. Though, like any DP, it's punishable on block so players will have to be very mindful of when and where to use it.

Of course, there are instant-air double jumps, which act a lot like Short Jumps found in SNK games and CvS2. But fortunately these are quite audible, visual, and telegraphed (slow). In other words, they really are a lot like short jumps -- except you can hear the jump, see the double jump sprite.

Now back to Othello and Ryuogen. They sort of break the rules by having "instant" overheads. The good news with Ryuogen is he isn't able to get any real damage off an instant overhead. Othello, on the other hand, is able to shift cancel his overhead, which allows him to combo for heavy damage. But then, that's just another reason why Othello is so top tier. Though, in my personal opinion it's not impossible to block Othello on reaction, though it can be rather difficult.

Just remember that the idea is to block as much as you can to gain points, then use your shift or super or other high-speed attacks to cause a powerbreak and regain momentum. Or just learn to option select properly.

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