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    Negative Edge

    Concept »

    A technical feature in many 2D fighters that allows special moves to be executed by releasing or depressing a button, rather than exclusively being activated by pressing down a button.

    Short summary describing this concept.

    Negative Edge last edited by thelastgogeta on 04/22/20 11:02AM View full history


    Negative Edge is a system commonly found in Capcom's Street Fighter fighting game series. It accepts the release of punch button(s) with Hadouken motion (Quarter-Circle Forward) to send a fireball, not simply the pressing of the button. For this reason, it is sometimes called "Button Up" in fighting game circles.

    This usually applies to all command-based attacks, but no Normals (attacks without command motions) and can hence lower the execution barrier for special moves and bolster tactics in multiple ways.


    1. In situations, where the player wants to fire projectile after projectile, there is a risk as only one Hadouken can be on screen at once and a punch input can produce a range of unsafe or generally undesirable moves. A Negative Edge Hadouken input will only release the projectile of choice as Normals are ignored.
    2. Due to the game checking for both the pressing and depressing of a button, the odds of a command move coming out in frame-precise situations are essentially doubled.
    3. By releasing all three punch buttons in succession while landing from the air, the chance of a Shoryuken coming out can be tripled without performing an air normal which increases landing lag. This is especially good against incoming a Raging Demon like attack.
    4. A single button can potentially perform multiple moves with clever use to reduce button presses, like using it to cancel a Heavy Punch press into a Heavy Shoryuken (Forward, Down, Forward and Heavy Punch) release.
    5. The button(s) can be held without the character doing an unsafe action if they are pressed during the uncancellable part of a taunt, wake-up animation or even unrelated attacks.

    In relation to the last listed strength, there are some interesting exceptions in the Street Fighter series like Balrog's Turn Punch, a technique which can only be done by releasing all three punch buttons or all three kick buttons. This effectively makes it a motionless special move, impossible to get an unsafe action and also one of few attacks which can only be achieved through Negative Edge.

    One key weakness that this move is that while buttons are held down, they cannot be pressed to do other actions and the Turn Punch gets stronger the longer that the buttons are held. So despite having potential power rivalling Ultra Combos without using any meter but also potentially cancelling into a super, the player would be unable to do any actions which need a punch or kick button including Focus Attack and normal Throws in Street Fighter IV while preparing it.

    Carl commands Nirvana to fire Volante. a move only possible with the use of Negative Edge.
    Carl commands Nirvana to fire Volante. a move only possible with the use of Negative Edge.

    Arc System Works games like Guilty Gear and BlazBlue typically limit the use of the mechanic to add more control to projectiles or control a puppet of some description rather than a nigh-universal option for specials and supers. This can be seen with Carl Clover's control of his puppet, Nirvana which ranges from her movement as holding the Drive/D Button moving her with using directional inputs, but also Carl unless he is crouching or in the middle of other actions. The special moves and supers for his puppet can exclusively be done by releasing the D button with a simple direction or more complex commands.

    BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle and Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite are both 2 vs. 2 tag based fighting games where the player can hold and release buttons during skills which control of the whole team at once or only a single member.

    NetherRealm Studios have an option to toggle on and off Negative Edge (called Release Check) in their recent Injustice and Mortal Kombat titles due to it being especially generous and getting in the way due to how moves are designed.


    "An A press is an A Press. You can't say its only a half"

    Some players refer to the pressing of a button itself as "Positive Edge".

    By design, many charged attacks in video games like Mega Man's Mega Buster resemble this or at least the Turn Punch subsection as the attack can only be performed through a button's release.

    0.5x A Press (pronounced as "Half an A Press") challenges revolve around playing levels of Super Mario 64 and other titles with half of an A press or more specifically without releasing the A button on level entry. This is of interest as the game has seven types of Jump tied to the input and how the game responds due to the button being held allowing for some jump related actions to be done. The popularity of videos related to the challenge has resulted in many memes.


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