Understanding frame data is essential if you are looking to take fighting games seriously. If you are completely new to fighting games then seeing these numbers might be confusing. This guide will explain frame data and how it works in Mortal Kombat 11.
First let’s try to understand what a frame is. Mortal Kombat 11 plays at 60 fps (frames per second). This means that after every second, 60 frames will have passed by. One frame is the equivalent to 1/60th of a second. We can use this to determine how fast certain moves are in the game.
Start-up is the amount of frames a move takes before becoming active.
In this example, we’ll be looking at Jade. If we look at the start-up of Jade’s +, we see that it has a 10 start-up frames. A move with 10 frames of start-up or less is very fast as it comes out in 1/6th of a second. The lower the start-up of a move, the faster that move will be. In contrast, the higher the start-up of a move, the slower it will be.
Let’s compare this to Jade’s +, which has a 28 start-up frames. This move will come out much slower than Jade’s +.
Active is the amount of frames a move has while it is in its active state.
Jade’s + has 21 active frames. This move will stay active for quite a while compared to Jade’s + which only has 2 active frames.
Recovery is the amount of frames a move has after being used for a character to be able to move again.
Jade’s + has 34 recovery frames. This means that after Jade has used this move, she can no longer block or move until 34 frames have passed. Moves with a high amount of recovery frames are generally unsafe if they miss.
Cancel advantage is the amount of frames a move gives when cancelled into another move. To view the cancel advantage of a move, you must turn on Frame Data in Practice Options and perform the move on hit or on block.
Jade’s + has 31 cancel advantage on hit. If the opponent is hit by this move and it is cancelled into another move, they won’t be able to move for 31 frames.
Cancel advantage is different on hit than on block. For example, Jade’s + has 31 cancel advantage on hit, but it has 10 cancel advantage on block. If the opponent blocks this move and it is cancelled into another move, they won’t be able to move for 10 frames.
If we look at Jade’s Edenian Spark, it has a start-up of 20 frames. If + is cancelled into Edenian Spark on block, the opponent won’t be able to move for 10 frames, but will be able to move afterwards before the Edenian Spark connects.
This is different from the cancel advantage listed in the Move List. The Move List cancel advantage is the first frame in which a cancel occurs. For example, the Move List cancel advantage for Jade’s + is listed as 21. This means that on frame 21, + will start to cancel into another move.
Hit advantage is the amount of frames a move gives after it hits.
Jade’s + has 15 hit advantage. If the opponent is hit by this move, they won’t be able to move for 15 frames.
Block advantage is the amount of frames a move gives after it is blocked.
Jade’s +,,, has 5 block advantage. If the opponent blocks this move, they won’t be able to move for 5 frames.
Most moves however will have negative block advantage. A move that has negative block advantage works in the opposite manner. Jade’s + has -13 block advantage. If the opponent blocks this move, then instead, Jade won’t be able to move for 13 frames.
Moves with a high amount of negative block advantage are generally unsafe. For example, in order to punish Jade’s +, the opponent will need to use a move with 12 start-up frames or faster.
A move with 13 start-up frames will not work here because the move doesn’t become active until the 14th frame, which is the first active frame.
Another thing to note is if a Special Move with 13 start-up frames is done as a reversal, then it will work because reversals have 1 frame shaven off.
Flawless Block Advantage
Flawless Block advantage is the amount of frames a move gives after it is Flawless Blocked.
Jade’s + has -19 Flawless Block advantage. If the opponent Flawless Blocks this move, Jade won’t be able to move for 19 frames.