A dash is a special maneuver that allows you to cover distance more quickly than just walking. You may dash either forward or backward, and it is executed by pressing either toward or away twice in rapid succession. Once you begin a dash, you are committed to the full amount of movement accorded to your dash, determined by your character. You cannot perform any other actions during a dash. A dash cannot be cancelled into an attack.
Dashes are most useful for positioning and crossups. For example, after knocking down an enemy, you can dash over their prone form to begin attacking them from their other side.
While in a dash, your character is considered by the engine to be airborne, meaning that if you get hit by say, a standing light punch, your character will go into an midair reel stun animation and then land back on their feet. Therefore, you cannot hit a dashing character with a normal buffered into a special and have the special combo, unless the special has juggle capability. However, there is a *very* short period of time at the end of the dash where you are considered grounded. (We're talking a couple frames here.) So if you get hit during this phase, you can get comboed.
There are a few characters for whom dashing brings them high enough in the air that they can use them to avoid low attacks, such as sweeps and fireballs. Examples include Blanka, Morrigan, and Nakoruru.
You cannot dash over a crouching character.
A run is exactly what it sounds like: your character moves forward at a full sprint. A run is executed by tapping forward twice in rapid succession, and you may continue to run for any distance.
There are three ways to stop a run. The first is to simply return the lever to either a neutral position or press back. Your character will skid for a short period of time, and then go into whatever input you're entering into the controller. While your character is skidding, you are completely vulnerable to attacks.
The second way to stop a run is to jump forward, which will automatically propel you into a high jump.
The third, and frankly, best way to stop a run is to cancel it into a normal or special attack. Since a whiffed jab has a shorter vulnerable period than the skid at the end of the run, it is best to use this method to end it. You can also use a series of short runs cancelled into attacks to apply pressure to your opponent.
A slight difference in the tactics of a run is present in the Vs. games and Capcom vs. SNK 2. (Remember: CvS2 *technically* isn't a versus game. The versus games are based on the Marvel Hyper Fighting Engine.) In the versus games, an attack from a run would have some of the momentum maintained from the run, while in CvS2 a run cancelled into an attack brings you to a dead stop.
Another important point to remember is that during a run, you are considered to be completely grounded. That means that if you eat a opening move while running, you are likely to get the everloving hell comboed out of you. So even though a run is slightly more versatile than a dash, there is a bit more risk involved.
A backwards run is simply a dash, executed exactly as described above.
This ability comes from the Advanced Mode in King of Fighters, and was implemented into the Capcom vs. SNK series. It allows your character to move in certain ways directly from a blockstun state. It is executed by pressing toward or back, and LP+LK, while blockstunned.
If you do perform a counter movement toward your opponent, your character will roll towards them, with all applicable rules and technical aspects of a roll as described below. If a counter movement is performed away from your opponent, your character performs a backwards dash, with all applicable rules and technical aspects of a dash as described under the writeup of that name. Each time you use this maneuver, it costs you one level from your super meter.
The best way to use this ability is on the first blocked hit of a super. Immediately activate a forward counter movement, and then punish the offending character from behind.
Normally, when your character is knocked to the ground, they stay there for about half a second before getting back up. Tactical recovery allows you to add confusion to your opponents timing by lengthening the amount of time that your character stays prone before getting back up.
To perform a tactical recovery, press any two (or all three) punch buttons when you hit the ground. Your character will stay down for about a half second longer, and then get back up. You'll know if you did it correctly, because your character will have "shadow" effects when they stand up.
Learning how to use this tactic can subtly shift the flow of the wake-up game to your advantage, and any advantage that you can get in this game should be taken and used.
A safe fall is a method to prevent you from being knocked down by your opponent altogether.
Normally, when you are knocked down, you hit the ground, bounce, hit the ground again, and then stay there for about half a second.
To perform a safe fall, press two (or three) punch buttons after the first bounce, and your character will roll backwards to their feet, foiling any wake-up games your opponent may have had planned for you.
You cannot, however, perform a safe fall after being knocked down by a super. You'll just have to brush up on your reversal game at that point.
Beware! There is a period at the end of the roll coming out of a safe fall where you are vulnerable, and considered to be grounded. There are a few long-lasting level 3 supers that will rip you a new one if you are in the process of a safe fall. Also, if you safe fall into a corner, a cagey opponent can take the opportunity to brutally punish you.
A "roll" is a maneuver that allows a character to advance on an opponent while briefly being invincible to attacks made to halt forward progress, such as fireballs. Rolls are from the advanced mode of the King of Fighters series, and were implemented into the Capcom vs. SNK series. A roll is executed in CvS by pressing LP+LK.
A roll appears to be a single thread of action, but in the sense of game mechanics, there are actually two threads of action that occur. (This is an important point for the Roll Cancel maneuver.) The first is that your character enters into the animation frames for the roll, propelling them forward on the ground an amount of distance determined by which character you are playing. This animation will include shadow effects, and lasts anywhere from 23-35 frames, depending on your character.
The second thread of action is that your character becomes invincible for 20-22 frames, again dependent on character. This means that all attacks (except throws) will pass right through them, and your character will pass through other characters as well.
After these frames, there are sometimes a number of frames where the character is still invincible to high attacks, but is susceptible to low attacks, such as sweeps and ground-based fireballs. Again, this is dependent on the character, and does not apply to some at all. The number of frames for this stage ranges from 0 to 5, with the exception of Chang, who stays in this state for 10 frames.
The final stage of the roll is when the character is fully vulnerable to all attacks, but is still in the roll animation. This simulates the period that a character would spend recovering from the roll. This stage lasts from 3-5 frames, dependent on character.
In Capcom vs. SNK 2, a notable gameplay mechanic is that rolls are, no matter what stage they are in, vulnerable to throws, including Grab Supers and Command Throws. This is always the best way to punish a rolling character for attempting a crossup with this maneuver. Even a technique such as Akuma's Raging Demon Combo will punish a roll attempt. This was not the case, however, in Capcom vs. SNK 1, where a character could tech hit a throw even during a roll.
A roll can be used as a crossup, and is also useful for advancing against fireballs.