[MECH] How Do I Footwork?



  • As an fps slasher, it’s no wonder mechanics like feinting, combos, parrying, blocking, etc are all so frequently discussed. It’s a combat based game, so let’s talk about combat skills. However, I feel like a massive element, at least for any skilled player, is left out though – footwork and movement. Sprinting, jumping, ducking, dodging, or simply just walking. I’m relatively new to the game, but have focused a lot on the competitive aspect on the game so I know the basics. I’m also speaking from pretty much a 1v1/dueling perspective. The point of this thread is to state some tactics I know, but also hopefully gain input from more experienced players.

    Sprinting:
    Normally this is just used for getting from point A to point B quicker, or closing in on a fight to steal the kill. Sprinting is a crucial part of combat though. I play pretty much only MaA, so I focus more on dodging instead of sprinting. But I duel a lot, and utilizing this mechanic is what seems to separate the bad knights/vans from the good. My understanding is that you sprint to close the gap, since most classes don’t have dodge. If you’re attacking, you should most likely be sprinting. Hopefully a better knight/van can elaborate on this a bit.

    Jumping:
    Seems straightforward enough from what I’ve seen: you jump and stab/overhead downwards to get over blocks. I’ve done it a few time successfully but jumping seems kind of clunky. Other than that I don’t use it much, but apparently you can jump over slash swings? Never seen/tried it.

    Ducking:
    A really fun thing when you pull it off. Looks sick too. If you crouch you can duck under swings, if you do it correctly. I didn’t believe it at first but after trying it a few times I pulled it off. It can be very unexpected and clutch. Don’t know much about this, so if a pro ducker could add some input that’d be cool. Do you look in any particular direction when ducking?

    Dodging:
    One type of movement I’m very familiar with. Since this is strictly for MaA I’ll discuss a few techniques I frequently use. One of my favorites is forward lunge+stab. Massive range and very explosive, if you can aim it properly you can absolutely dominate enemies. Sometimes I’ll double dodge forward for large gaps, or dodge+stab+feint then dodge+stab again. A major aspect of MaA is being unpredictable and dynamic when you fight.

    VS an overhead of stab the best thing to do is dodge to the right. With your relatively short weapons chances are you’ll either get hit or at best trade if you dodge forward against a stab or overhead. If you dodge to the side – not just facing them, but dodging to the side and keeping your crosshair on them – you will end up facing them perpendicular to their weapon. Circling them basically. That means they can block or parry you, almost a free hit every time and probably the most effective way to hit as MaA. You can also dodge left, which is less expected, but it puts you in the path of their weapon. Works better vs shielded enemies. Sometimes I’ll also dodge straight, then immediately dodge around them. Not sure if I like this technique because it’s difficult to do and eats stam, but it puts you in a position to attack very quickly.

    Avoid wasting dodges and stam unnecessarily. This seems obvious, but even I’m terrible at it. Try to keep in mind to make EVERY shot count. You should, ideally, never miss. There’s no reason to if you’re skilled. Also I prefer to avoid damage by dodging, instead of parrying. Save parrying as a last resort as it leaves you vulnerable and makes it easy to bait you with feints. Dodging puts you in a better position to attack if you do it well AND it can avoid any attack. You kind of have to try it, you’ll be surprised by how easily you can dodge from under overheads/stabs, and step out of range of slashes. As anything else, how you dodge is very situational and based on the class/weapon you’re against. That’s all I can think of, hopefully someone can add to/critique that so I can be a better MaA myself lol.

    Walking:
    The simplest mode of movement and the one you use most. Also a deciding factor for fights. Good positioning and distance control are PIVOTAL for dueling. And both of these are achieved most commonly by simply walking. I don’t remember his name, but I dueled an excellent 2h sword vanguard who I simply could not beat because his movement was so superior to mine. I don’t understand what he was doing or why, but it made him very difficult to hit and made me very easy to hit – the whole point of movement. I don’t have many tips for this, other than zig-zag vs archers so I was really hoping if someone good could give some input on movement.

    That’s all I can think of for now. Like I said, this is to add what little I know to the community, but also to hopefully pull better tactics from better players as well.



  • @Pariah:

    Ducking:
    A really fun thing when you pull it off. Looks sick too. If you crouch you can duck under swings, if you do it correctly. I didn’t believe it at first but after trying it a few times I pulled it off. It can be very unexpected and clutch. Don’t know much about this, so if a pro ducker could add some input that’d be cool. Do you look in any particular direction when ducking?

    Actually there are two things that make ducking way more effecting.

    1. Looking at the ground while ducking. You cant countrattack immediately but it will always work except when opponent aims at legs.
    2. Not moving while ducking. If you are moving while ducking your character kinda stretches his body.
      You can test it in 3rd person. You will see very big difference in height while ducking.


  • I usually play a Vanguard with the Claymore. I play like the guy you talked about in the Walking tactic. If you want to be him/them, I’d suggest waiting until he runs out of stamina, go in for the swing, If he’s good he’ll either block or move out of the way. While he is recovering, kick him and stab, kick and stab. At least that is what I do when some one is decent or better than average. He’ll probably attack you by walking toward you with a slash already in motion and then do a quick 180 for a second slash to the back. It may seem risky, but when I do that, it works like a charm on any player.



  • Pariah giving tips eh? Hmmmm…

    =p J/k, dude’s good. Listen to his great post.

    -Edit- If I had to condense it and kind of paraphrase, I’d say that you should always be sprinting as a 2H user and almost never sprinting as an MAA. It takes a lot of practice to be able to sprint around and be able to dodge when you want/need to, because you have to release sprint for a half-second before it will let you dodge. I don’t know if that’s a bug or just sloppy controls, but it makes it quite difficult to maneuver well. My advice is to simply walk during 1v1 fights and dodge more than you sprint, utilizing rest periods to regenerate your stamina. Good players will know when you’re low and press the advantage, so you have to maintain distance and know how to not get hit while just walking, because regen only happens when you’re not sprinting or dodging.

    Stamina management is very important. Only go all-out when you have an advantage, like you just parried a feinted attack in close. Especially since dodge is another stamina drain that other classes don’t have, MAA runs out of stamina extremely quickly if they are aggressive. On the flipside of that, if you are being attacked and you managed to block most of the dodge-strikes and feints, the MAA attacking you is very low on stamina. Force him to block or dodge and listen for the audio cue of his guy panting; he’s now gassed and every time he blocks, he gets stunned. Attack once or twice, relentlessly because he can’t counter-atack, and if he’s still up, feint and you win. Of course, if you are simply slashing he could duck under your strike, so it’s better to go with a diagonal overhead slash; this is the hardest thing to avoid becaue it can’t be ducked nor sidestepped with normal strafing if you drag it properly.

    Well, that got longer than I thought, but I figured I’d add that.



  • @Gargh:

    @Pariah:

    Ducking:
    A really fun thing when you pull it off. Looks sick too. If you crouch you can duck under swings, if you do it correctly. I didn’t believe it at first but after trying it a few times I pulled it off. It can be very unexpected and clutch. Don’t know much about this, so if a pro ducker could add some input that’d be cool. Do you look in any particular direction when ducking?

    Actually there are two things that make ducking way more effecting.

    1. Looking at the ground while ducking. You cant countrattack immediately but it will always work except when opponent aims at legs.
    2. Not moving while ducking. If you are moving while ducking your character kinda stretches his body.
      You can test it in 3rd person. You will see very big difference in height while ducking.

    for 1.) i think you COULD counterattack immediately if you start the windup while looking down, and are good enough to come back up and aim it by the time you swing. i’ll have to test this.



  • Well, I have to say that some guys on a few servers know me because of my footwork and my Maul.

    Some general tipps: If you like MAA, learn to play him! Then go better and try less dodges with V or double tapping. Instead use sprinting, ducking and jumping (ducking for defense, jumping for offense or incoming Vanguards).

    I’ve mastered the “ducking under attack” with MAA first, I never dodge in to my enemies (well, okay… I do it sometimes). Especially with a VERY slow weapon like Maul your footwork has to be good. I could upload some videos just to show footwork. Jumping over shields works good, dodging under strikes also, but don’t use it too often. Escpecially in big fights it will work only once (for the time the fights lasts… later it’s going to work again, because a lot of people don’t remind what you did or are just used to hit always the head).

    The basics are more interesting than you might think they are. With Maul, you could start the attack out of range, of course. But most times the enemy will block it easy. So you’re going to start the attacking out of reach, e.g. overhead, then get close, enemy will start an attack, you run back (S) and start a stab or a lookdown overhead.

    This tactic works good against MAAs. Start an attack, always run, feint or miss it on purpose, use an other attack and you’re likely to hit the enemy.

    Even in 2on1 and 3on1 twohanded weapons are useful. But when the enemies are very experienced you should always change to shield if possible. It will take you some hours to learn how to dodge and run while fighting more enemies. But it’s fucking great, if half of the players say “gj/wp” after beating more than two guys as the last man standing.

    Edit: I’m not that good in describing fighting mechanics, instead I might edit a video in my posting later.



  • This seems obvious, but even I’m terrible at it. Try to keep in mind to make EVERY shot count. You should, ideally, never miss. There’s no reason to if you’re skilled.

    This is not really right.

    Making mistakes is a skill in itself. Think of it like a poker game where you intentionally make mistakes to see or bait your opponent’s reactions to them, and then you exploit those reactions.

    For example, I was dueling a 2handed weapon Knight today as MAA. I first tried the basic tactic of dodge forward + stab (with stab already charging up before dodge).

    He parries it every time. However, I know that the only way to parry this combo is to parry instantly when the MAA dodges. If you try to parry after he is already in range of you, it is too late because he charged up his stab before the dodge.

    By opening with this tactic, I am teaching that knight, or forcing him to learn, to parry when I dodge forward. So then I dodged forward, waited, saw that he parried as expected, and then I stabbed, and I hit him. By now he knows that I have countered his play with my new tactic. I do this again (dodge forward, wait, stab) but he caught on and didn’t parry instantly, and was able to parry my delayed stab.

    Now I have ‘taught’ him or conditioned him to learn how to react. This time I dodge forward, wait, feign stab, then stab. He wasted parry on my feign because he was reacting to my previous tactic that I baited him into learning by intentionally making that previous mistake.

    I repeated this tactic of making a bad attack I know that he will block, then doing something else in reaction to how he blocked, then doing that new attack again since I know he has learned to block it now, then doing something else again in reaction to his new way of blocking my previous attack, and I won the duel by staying one step ahead of him the entire time. You can see how strong it can be to make intentional mistakes here, since it made me win the duel with only 3 mechanics: forward dodge, stab, and feign (didn’t even need side dodge).

    Just like bluffing in poker or intentionally losing bets in order to condition your opponent to believing certain things about your next play, at which point you then exploit this belief by doing something else.

    Of course after doing this your opponent should catch on that your tactic is to stay 1 step ahead of him by feeding him fake information, you will have to make your manipulation more complex to stay 1 step ahead of him. This is only one basic example of how making mistakes can be intentional and part of your strategy to win. The better your opponent, the faster he will catch on to how you are trying to manipulate him, and the more complex you would need to be to out-manipulate his counter-play.



  • One of the things that I find vital to being an almost no horizontal attack vanguard is doing an attack (Any) at any prospective opponent before the prospectively enter reach.

    They usually stop sprinting, almost as if they went “Holy crap I forgot how huge those things are” and parry at ludicrous distances.

    In other words… They get intimidated.

    Having an intimidated opponent is pretty important to the two handed classes, as… Getting overwhelmed is potentially fatal, and intimidated foes are 10X as likely to fall for feints, falling for a laughably horrible death.

    Just… Don’t do this to any decent man at arms. They will call your bluff.

    In general, I would say that sprinting is mostly good for overwhelming a target that uses a slow… Long weapon.

    Sprinting to get in reach as a vanguards… Is for attacking archers. Other classes will come to you.

    Sprinting will make your feints more believable.
    A feinted foe is dead if they are unable to pull off a kick, or… Turtle up with a shield (And you forget to kick them.)

    There simply isn’t enough health in the game for an opponent to survive a feint, so basically… Everything you can do to make your opponent a scared schoolgirl will make the long weapon classes infinitely more deadly. (Also, try to memorize the most discreet looking feint follow ups. Horizontal-> Stab or Overhead -> alt Overhead are the best for Polearms.)



  • Something about ducking…
    Ducking is VERY useful and you should duck at all times that you are not moving, it can also help get around a shield. Slicing that MaA’s health away by ducking under his shield is the way I get most of my opponents. If a knight is dumb enough to actually USE the kite shield he just just asking to be duck-sliced.



  • Ehh good guide but this guy sucks at darkfall



  • @Ozymandias:

    Something about ducking…
    Ducking is VERY useful and you should duck at all times that you are not moving, it can also help get around a shield. Slicing that MaA’s health away by ducking under his shield is the way I get most of my opponents. If a knight is dumb enough to actually USE the kite shield he just just asking to be duck-sliced.

    And yet poking under shields has been confirmed as impossible due to a bug, so you’re just going around it rather than under and could do that while not crouching.



  • As a main MAA myself, good footwork is crucial. I am working on not having to rely on the dodge ability at all, by learning the ranges of all weapons and then judge the correct distance to make to the opponent before attacking. Also, being able to read the animations fast, enables you to simply move a little to the left or right and avoid getting hit at all - while being up close with the opponent.

    Another thing I have found really useful as a MAA to improve footwork, is to practice duels as an archer with the broad dagger only. This way, you are as vulnerable as you can get with weak armor, low damage and minimal weapon range - and the only way to survive is mainly good footwork as you can’t dodge out of harms way. When you can beat good knights and vanguard players like this without even getting hit, playing a game afterwards as MAA is going to feel like a breeze.


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