Fighting games, like chess, uses a specific language to describe specific sequences of moves. Unlike chess, however, the notation of fighting games is not standardized; this article gives an overview of the popular formats today, as well as some notation specific to certain games.

Numpad notation Edit

This notation is arguably the most popular, both in Japan and in the West. It uses a series of numbers to describe directional inputs. It gets its name from the numerical pad found on the far right of most keyboards.

In numpad notation, each of the nine possible directions is assigned to a number.

↖7 Up-Back ↑8 Up ↗9 Up-Forward
←4 Back 5 Neutral →6 Forward
↙1 Down-Back ↓2 Down ↘3 Down-Forward

Like in most fighting game notations, this is making the assumption that your character is facing right; '6' always refers to the direction your character is facing and '4' always refers to the direction opposite of that, even if your character is facing left.

Buttons are denoted by the name of the button themselves and vary from game to game. These range from LK, LP, MK, et cetera to simply A, B, C, and D.

Moves made in the air are prefixed with 'j.'. 'j.5A' is an attack made by jumping, letting the stick return to neutral, and pressing A. Rarely you will also see a s. for standing, and a c. for crouching, instead of 5 and 2.

Charge moves do not have a universal notation. They are sometimes denoted with square brackets, such as [4]6.

Arrow Notation Edit

While numpad notation uses numbers to denote direction, arrow notation uses pictures of arrows to denote direction. Usually, in-game command lists, as well as professional publications, use arrow notation.

Again, with arrow notation, a right-facing arrow refers to 'forward' and a left-facing arrow refers to 'backward' regardless of the direction your character is facing.

Some games, such as Street Fighter and Guilty Gear, show the directional inputs in a single graphic.