How To Play Arcana Heart 3 – Part 2: Basic Movement

By James Xie - PR Coordinator, Aksys Games . April 19, 2011 . 4:02pm

Table of Contents


00-Can't Hit Anything

Now that you’ve picked a character and an Arcana, you can finally think about playing Arcana Heart 3. For the most part, moving around is the most important basic aspect in Arcana Heart 3, as when you begin a match, you are usually too far away to hit your opponent without moving first. With that in mind, let’s discuss all of the basic movement options in Arcana Heart 3 so you can get close enough to hit your opponent.


Basic Movement – Like Every Other Game

There are only a few basic movement options in Arcana Heart 3 and most of them should be pretty familiar to you if you’ve played any sort of 2D game. Regardless, let’s go through each and every one so we don’t accidently leave anyone in the dust. For the record, all controls assume that your character is facing right.


Walking – By inputting and holding ← or →, you will walk backward or forward, respectively. This is definitely one way that you can use to move around, though it is by far the slowest. Still, it’s important to walk before you fly, so there you have it. It bears mentioning that walking backward will double as a Standing Guard, so keep this in mind.


01-Forward Walking Final

Crouching – By inputting and holding ↓, ↙, or ↘, your character will crouch. Since ↙ also counts as a Crouching guard, this is probably the most useful input used for crouching. Crouching gives you access to different normal attacks, which is probably the biggest use of crouching, aside from blocking an opponent’s low attacks.


02-Crouching Final


Jump – By inputting ↗, ↑, or ↖, your character will jump in the direction that you inputted. Jumps provide a way for your character to move upward, which is definitely a plus since there’s a whole lot of empty screen for you to occupy in this game. Whether you choose to use this mobility for offense or defense however, is up to you.


03-Neutral Jump


Intermediate Movement – Like Some Other Games

These are movement options that you commonly see in other fighting games, including Street Fighter IV and BlazBlue. They have slightly different properties from most conventional games, so each and every one is also listed in full detail here. It is important to note that the character or Arcana you play may affect these abilities (such as Scharlachrot’s Forward Step or the Wind Arcana’s ability to Triple Jump), but they should be taken as the exception and not the rule.


Forward Step – By inputting →→ quickly, your character will perform a Forward Step, also known as a Forward Dash. Relative to walking, this will move you forward pretty quickly, but by inputting Forward Step, you are committed to moving forward. The Forward Dash is fully cancelable at any time, so you can always cut your forward movement short by attacking, jumping, and or even blocking during the animation. That said, the Forward Step is quite useful.


04-Forward Step Final


Back Step – By inputting ←← quickly, your character will perform a Back Step, also known as a Back Dash. Once again, relative to walking, this will move your character backward pretty quickly. However, unlike the Forward Step, the Back Step has a period of recovery after the animation is finished and is NOT fully cancelable. Instead, the Back Step has invincibility for about half of its animation, followed by a window where it can be canceled into special attacks, and then finally a small bit of recovery where you cannot do anything at all. With that in mind, the Back Step is useful for avoiding incoming attacks and for creating space between yourself and your opponent, but it is far from fool-proof.


05-Back Step Final


High Jump – By inputting ↓, then quickly inputting a jump (↗, ↑, or ↖,), your character will perform a High Jump, otherwise known as a Super Jump. When done correctly, the jump animation is quite different and your opponent will go much, much higher than a normal jump. Depending on which direction you input your High Jump, your character will travel slightly further in that direction, though probably not as far as you’d expect out of a High Jump if you’ve played other games. However, relative to the normal Jump, the High Jump takes a little longer to get off the ground to offset the extra height you gain from performing it. Regardless, the practical application of the High Jump still remains the same, get higher faster.


06-High Jump Final 

Double Jump – By inputting ↗, ↑, or ↖ while your character is midair, your character will perform a Double Jump. A double jump is exactly what it sounds like, a second jump performed in the air. As with its namesake, you can only perform one Double Jump each time you take to the sky, but you can always perform one, regardless of how you got into the air (double jumping, being knocked into the sky). As you would expect, this option gives you more mobility in the air for either offense or defense.


07-Double Jump

Aerial Dash – By inputting →→ or ←← quickly while in midair, your character will perform an Aerial Dash. An Aerial Dash is a way to move laterally in the air, so it has many applications in both offense and defense. Compared to… not doing anything, this is a good way to move around, but you will not be able to block in the entire duration of the Aerial Dash and can only cancel the animation into an attack or movement option after the initial startup. Regardless, this is still a good movement option and has considerably less risk than some other options for closing in or getting away.


08-Aerial Dash Final

Closing – Wait, how do I get up there!?

You may have learned all the basic and intermediate ways to move around, but you’ve still got a long ways to go before you’re able to master movement in Arcana Heart 3! Tune in next time, when we’ll go the very heart and soul of Arcana Heart 3, “Homing”!



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  • Code

    rar, mobility is killer important to me in fighters, and from watching some Arcana Heart 3 can definitely tell it’s a strong point in in the series. I’ve been a fan of Guilty Gear and BB because they both stress freedom of movement owo;

    To me I really struggled with SF4 really weighty feel, only character I’ve felt really at home with in it is Juri because of her ability to move around a lot, and her general assy attitude >ww<' What Arcana effect movement? I see Wind gives a triple jump?

    I was kind of curious though, I know it supports traditional 4:3 and widescreen, but how does that work out? Does both screen types have there own online lobbies I take it? Also is the network same/separate from disc owners? rar, I'm seriously interested, price point is delicious, but I gotta find some people to play opo;; only one local friend really interested in giving it a shot. omo;; gotta fix that.

    • We can play too :D, once i somehow get money into the psn…

      • Code

        Man, me and you Wildarms we are TOTALLY going to play this; as soon as you somehow get money on your PSN >w<~! That alone is a selling point!

        • Yeah, that’s the only giant bulder in front of me T___T i have to destroy it!!

    • PrinceHeir

      oh god we’re the same way :D

      add KOF, Samurai Shodown, Melty Blood too :P

      these games definitely features fast paced and non-stop action :)

      i feel juri and viper are the only one’s that have great mobility and offense(though Juri’s defense and pokes are very strict)

      hey2 i want to join too :P

      would love to have this and a Melty Blood Actress Again Current Code in HD :)

    • fermented

      From what I hear, playing in widescreen effects the spacing of a lot of the moves, combos, and setups, so I’d imagine that each would have their own separate lobbies, but I’ll have to check it myself.

      The 4:3 aspect ratio is the tournament standard since it’s the screen size used on AH3 arcade cabinets.

      • Code

        Yep! I know 4:3 would be tournament standard, but at least for showing people it locally, widescreen might help it a little more, since I know a few people would be like omo; What is this old-timey screen ratio business!? opo; Then if they get into it we could switch over >ww<'

  • IceRomancer

    Can’t wait to try this for myself :)
    I’m downloading it right now and boy is it a hefty one lol

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