Become a Jump Force master with these tips

© Bandai Namco
Written by Phillip Ekuwem
Jump Force is set to take over the anime gaming community on its release, so we've gathered some essential tips and tricks to help you come out on top.
With the full release of Jump Force just around the corner, you'll soon be able to battle with your favourite shonen characters. In the meantime, we've spent a lot of time on the Jump Force open beta, and pulled together some beginner tips to help you get a head start on your opponents.

Button mashing will only get you so far

Button mashing works to a certain extent on Jump Force, but as you start to face more opponents, you'll notice that fights become more difficult to win when most of your attack strategy involves repeatedly hitting the attack buttons in the hope of landing combo after combo.
You need to be able to predict your opponent's moves, and counter attack accordingly. Analysing your opponent's playstyle over the course of a game will keep you one step ahead of them. Do they constantly try to put some distance between you, hoping to hit a long range attack? Always be ready to block, or side step, when you feel they're coming at you with an attack or a dash. The skill gap lies in anticipation and perfectly timed execution.

Try to make the first move

Trying to anticipate your opponent's attack as soon as a match begins can get you on the receiving end of a seemingly endless stream of combos, and leave your character's health bar drained before you've even had the chance to make your first move.
Always try to hit your opponent first – a successful hit could give you a massive advantage going into a fight, which transcends just depleting your opponent’s health bar. It can give you a bit of an intimidation factor, which can cause your opponent to second guess their attacks throughout the course of a battle, making it easier for you to dish out more Ls.
It's worth noting that attacks don’t always go as planned so be sure to always be on your guard.

Plan your assists

On the character selection screen you'll have to select a team, which consists of three characters. You'll be able to switch between characters during a fight, and also call upon one character for an assist.
Assists work similarly to how they did in the Naruto Ultimate Ninja Storm series. A member of your team will swoop in and perform an attack to support your efforts in a fight when you hold L2/ LT.
Assists can be the difference between a win and a loss, but whilst it may be tempting to use your assist out of panic, it's important to only use them when you have a solid plan, or some sort of goal you want to achieve with your assist.
For instance, if you need a clear-cut opportunity for a combo, then your assist can serve as cover fire, and give you enough time to quickly dash over to your opponent and begin a barrage of attacks. If you need to charge up your energy meter, then a perfectly executed assist can give you some time to do so.
Screenshot of Piccolo in the video game Jump Force.
Use your favourite characters

Master the sidestep

Jump Force allows you to escape a barrage of combos by pressing the dash (L1/ LB) button, but using an escape completely depletes your character's stamina, thus leaving you somewhat defenseless for a period of time.
To avoid pressing the escape button out of panic, you'd do well to learn the next best thing – the sidestep (Left analog stick + R1/ RB). The sidestep is a mini dash of sorts, which allows your character to move out of the path of an incoming attack if timed correctly. Do it too early and your opponent can still land a hit, but do it too late and you're probably already stuck in a combo.
Timing is key to successfully evading an attack with the sidestep. You need to anticipate your opponent's attack to have a good shot at timing a sidestep correctly, and should you manage to evade an attack successfully, you can use it as an opportunity to launch a counter-attack.
It's worth mentioning that you don't need to attempt to sidestep all moves. Some attacks can be easily nullified by holding the block button (R1/ RB).

Manage your energy meter

Special attacks drain your energy meter, so use them wisely. Recharging your energy meter leaves your character vulnerable, and depending on how much energy you need to charge up, your opponent will have a good window of opportunity to catch you off guard and land multiple hits.
You don't get too many opportunities to recharge your energy meter during a battle, especially if the pace of the fight is end-to-end, so only use special attacks when you have a clear opportunity to do so. A successful hit will give you a decent amount of time to quickly replenish your character's energy in time for another one.

Add your ultimate attack to combos

As the name suggests, your ultimate attack is your character’s most powerful attack, so it'd be quite unfortunate if after preparing for that moment where you get to unleash your true power and potentially end a fight with one fell swoop, your opponent simply dodges it.
To prevent that, be sure to add your ultimate attacks into combos to make them more or less inescapable, and increase your chances of getting more wins in the bag.
Jump Force is hitting PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC on February 15.