This character is bull$#!^

Elphelt Valentine is considered one of the best, if not the best characters in Guilty Gear Xrd Rev 2. She is the epitome of a complete character, and has been since her inception. The amount of upsides this character has would make you think that she’s one of those old secret characters you needed a cheat code for in older fighting games. Remember when you were younger, playing Tekken 2 on the PS1, and playing Devil? Or Super Smash Bros. Melee and getting smoked by Master Hand because it was basically cheating?

Yeah. Elphelt is basically that.

There are too many ways to describe how good she truly is, so this Deep Dive is going to be quite different. After all, Guilty Gear Xrd Rev 2 is a fairly old game, and the best of the best have already made their mark. Doing the traditional breakdown would be kind of meaningless, as they have already done the work. Instead, we’re going to look at and review some previous events that highlight the character, and a couple of players who played her at a master level. We’ll start with a quick scope of her strengths, though.

First off, she has this button:


Five. Heavy. Slash.

The dreamcrusher.

The god button.

This is quite literally the best normal I’ve ever had the pleasure of using. It does almost everything, everywhere, all at once. It can hit you from almost 2/3rds of the screen. It will whiff punish anything that doesn’t put you in a crouching state. If it hits you standing, it gives you a hard knockdown, rendering you unable to get up at a timing of your choosing.

It’s one of the better buttons at stuffing slow to medium approaches. It will certainly stuff jump ins as well, and the damage is nothing to scoff at. If you are really unsure of what to do, ending your combos with this is always a safe bet. The only weakness of this button is that it can be crouched and low profiled. Most characters wish they could have a button with only a single weakness, but Elphelt gets that.

Now, what if I told you that her 5HS is probably her third or fourth best tool?

You probably wouldn’t believe me, but:

If you’re ever going up against this stance in the corner. Pray.

Pray hard.

Miss Travailler, Elphelt’s Shotgun stance, is often much better than entire characters. This stance alone can warrant its own article, but the footnotes are: charged shotgun H (sg.H) is +5 on block. sg.P is a three frame normal that’s +1 on block. sg.D is a command grab that is throw invulnerable from frames 1-17, meaning that the universal mechanic of a frame 1 throw if an opponent gets too close just doesn’t work on this. Lastly, you can do all of your specials from this stance as well, including Pineberry. As you’ll see later on, you can create some truly messed up situations that might frustrate you vicariously.

Speaking of messed up, there’s one more move that I want to go over: Pineberry (236P)

Now, on the surface, pineberry is just a grenade that goes off in a set amount of time. That’s it, right?


Well, I wish it were that simple.

Pineberry also has a hitbox when you throw it, and that hitbox stays persistent until it settles down. This means that if you, say, throw it in the corner and it’s bouncing around along the ground or whatnot, it can still hit the opponent the entire time. You can throw it in different ways as well. An overhand throw from the ground throws pineberry way up high, serving well as a preemptive anti air, or when you want to cover a lot of airspace in general. The underhand throw does the same for the ground, while also being an excellent oki tool. The air throw can also be used for oki, as well as combos and setups.

The world is truly your oyster with this move, and this only covers the barebone basics of it. Pineberry explodes after three seconds, however, these three seconds are always static. There is no slowing down the timer at any point, even in intentionally slow periods, like Roman Cancel or super animations. This allows for some extremely versatile and creative options for her, and is yet another tool that makes her so powerful.

Finally, Elphelt stops her momentum momentarily when a grenade is made, so good luck to anyone having to defend against her high low mixups! If that isn’t enough for you, the grenade itself will remain if Elphelt is blocking, enabling baits, on top of everything else. I’m missing a lot more you can do with pineberry here, but It’s basically a team fighting game assist in a 1v1 fighting game, and you are in for a bad time the moment she wins neutral against you.

This is only scratching the bare surface on what she can do. I am definitely not the most qualified to get into the intricacies of Elphelt, as I’ve just started learning her myself. The possibilities with her are legitimately endless, however, and it’s so incredibly interesting how different Elphelt players go about their gameplan. When you have a character that can truly do it all, it can allow for some incredibly strong players!

Anthony Lowry (they/he) is a seasoned TCG, MMORPG, and FPS veteran. They are extensively knowledgeable on the intricacies of many competitive outlets, and are always looking for a new challenge in the gaming sphere.

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