The King of Fighters XIV marks the first appearance of Sylvie Paula Paula and make no mistake, she has a grand entrance. Don’t let her childlike nature fool you, this electromagnetic and slightly crazy monster of a fighter uses powerful special moves to inflict massive amounts of damage. When in MAX Mode or with meter, Slyvie can unleash devastating combos knocking her foes down to 50-60% life, making her fierce addition to the second or third slot of any team.
Sylvie is a character that relies heavily on her special moves and meter in order to dish out high amounts of damage. In many ways, she can be more of a defensive character than anything else, biding time until there is an opening to exploit between the opponent’s attacks.
With low range and slow activation time, Sylvie’s normals come off as very weak and don’t allow much in the way of getting in on the enemy. Because of this, it’s best to try to lure the opponent into attacking you or approaching them slowly and wait until an opportunity to counter attack them appears while blocking. Her command moves aren’t particularly powerful either, however Stret-Choni does act as fairly good anti-air. Try to stay out of the air too as her aerial attacks are also pretty weak with short range.
Sylvie’s real strength lies in her special moves and EX special moves. While she only has four special moves, each one of them is powerful and useful in their own ways. Denki Kaijin is fantastic for controlling the space in front of you and the EX form will put the opponent in a crumple state, setting them up for a high damage combo. Although the light form of Bootie Bootie seems rather weak, the heavy form gives Slyvie a way to play a bit in the air and dish out a bit of damage while doing so. The EX form’s almost full screen range can close gaps and put Slyvie up close and personal with her adversary. Dischar-Jing! is easily one of her strongest abilities as it can be used multiple times per combo in MAX Mode to juggle the enemy and also set up for a cancel into one of her super special moves, which’ll knock off a solid amount of HP.
While her jumping heavy kick and one of her command moves, Stret-Choni, act as fairly good anti-airs, the majority of it once again comes from her special moves. Dischar-Jing! and heavy Bootie Bootie are great for pushing an aerial opponent back and knocking them down from the air respectively. You’ll even be able to combo off a heavy Dischar-Jing! to inflict some serious damage.
Sylvie’s best anti-air is her special move Kaiten Coil which not only sends her in an electrical spiral upwards, but also moves her at an angle allowing you to catch your opponent off-guard before they have a chance to do anything. For the cost of one bar, her super special move Magneto-Trapo! has great range and will bring the enemy crashing down to the ground while dealing a hefty amount of damage.
Sylvie is at her best in MAX Mode with a high amount of meter. Try to avoid using her first or going for big combos while your meter is low. Because she tends to act more as a defensive character, you’ll have to develop a fair amount of patience and a keen eye for opportunity. If possible, try to lure or push the enemy into a corner as that is where Sylvie excels the most. When the opportunity arises, activate MAX Mode and hit the enemy with a blowback attack against the wall or a standing heavy attack to start your combo off.
Start off with a basic MAX Mode combo: MAX Mode > heavy punch > EX Denki Kaijin > EX Dischar-Jing! > heavy Dischar-Jing! > heavy Bootie Bootie
Timing is very important and can be a little tricky, but by learning this combo you’ll have a basis for much more difficult ones.
After getting a handle on the previous, change the end to cancel into a super special move to take off more than half of the enemy’s life: MAX Mode > heavy punch > EX Denki Kaijin > EX Dischar-Jing! > crouching heavy kick > EX Paula Experiment.
Sylvie has a huge array of utility and combos she can employ, but learning this basis will set you up to pick up everything else much quicker. YouTuber Persona Entertainment has already put together a video of amazing Sylvie combos that you can check out below.
In The King of Fighters XIV, Sylvie Paula Paula is certainly special in her own insane kind of way, but the power she can bring to a fight in the right hands is off the charts. Play slow, play defensively, and when the time is right, take off huge chunks of the opponent’s life with a single combo.