The King of Fighters '98/Mai

From SuperCombo Wiki


Mai is one of the lead members in the Japanese hentai doujin mafia.


Snka.gif Snkb.gif Snkc.gif Snkd.gif
Mai98 colorA.png Mai98 colorB.png Mai98 colorC.png Mai98 colorD.png

Gameplay Overview

Mai is a very solid zoning/poking/runaway-based character. Her fast but higher than average jump and air dive lets her control the air a bit different from most characters. Her Ryuu Enbu, along with her Fan Toss and pokes allow her to zone and keep advantage on the ground quite effectively. While she falls mid to low-mid on most tier lists, it is misleading because she doesn't suffer matchups vs the top tier as bad as a lot of other characters that are usually ranked above her. She requires good execution/reflexes for hit-checking cr.Snkc.gif, but aside from that she is pretty average on execution. A good character for a beginner.

In-depth analysis


Frames Advantage Cancel Block Hitbox Notes
Standing Close
Snka.gif 4/2+2/8 0/-2 C HL
Mai98 clA1.png
Mai98 clA2.png
Her best cancelable light attack (only other is cl.Snkb.gif and it sucks).
Snkb.gif 5/3/7 +2/0 C HL
Mai98 clB.png
It can cancel, but it's not great. Does have slightly better frame advantage than Cl.Snka.gif
Snkc.gif 3/3/20 -3/-5 C HL
Mai98 clC.png
Good anti-air when they are at a close/high angle. Fast, cancelable.
Snkd.gif 5/6/22 -8/-10 C HL
Mai98 clD.png
Kind of like cl.Snkc.gif, but it doesn't activate from as far, so stick with cl.Snkc.gif.
Standing Far
Snka.gif 3/3/11 -2/-4 - HL
Mai98 stA.png
Nice fast poke, just a little short-ranged. Good followup after a meaty Qcb.png + Snka.gif in the corner.
Snkb.gif 5/6/10 -4/-6 - HL
Mai98 stB.png
Fast, great as a short hop anti-air. Whiffs on crouchers, but the recovery is quick.
Snkc.gif 7/4+5/16 -5/-7 - HL
Mai98 stC1.png
Mai98 stC2.png
This is a reasonably good short hop anti-air, and sometimes hits moves in poke wars.
Snkd.gif 8/5/15 0/-2 - HL
Mai98 stD.png
Only noteworthy feature is that it can go over lows.
Snkc.gif+Snkd.gif 17/5/24 KD/-7 S HL
Mai98 stCD.png
Standard Snkc.gif+Snkd.gif.
Snka.gif 5/3/9 0/-2 - HL
Mai98 crA.png
Pretty good range but otherwise un-remarkable, as it can't cancel.
Snkb.gif 5/4/7 +1/-1 - L
Mai98 crB.png
It's very slow and crappy for a cr.Snkb.gif, but it's her only combo-able low attack.
Snkc.gif 3/7/15 -2/-4 C HL
Mai98 crC.png
The main combo/meaty normal. Lots of time to hit-confirm into Hcf.png + K.png or Qcb.png Hcf.png + K.png off a normal hit, if it's meaty if course you'll have less time depending on how early you do it.
Snkd.gif 7/7/20 KD/-9 C L
Mai98 crD.png
Sweep, pretty meaty but otherwise insignificant. Cancelable.
Snka.gif 6/7 -/- C H
Mai98 jA.png
Cancelable, otherwise not great.
Snkb.gif 4/11 -/- - H
Mai98 jB.png
Very nice hitbox/high priority, can cross-up.
Snkc.gif 5/8 -/- C H
Mai98 jC.png
Fast, actually pretty good for air-to-air or as a jump-in. Like Chizuru's jumping Snkc.gif, it has less hit-freeze than most jump attacks, so you have to perform your ground followup from a jump-in very quickly. Cancelable.
Snkd.gif 4/9 -/- - H
Mai98 jD.png
Nice long-range jump-in, pretty fast too. Usually the jump-in of choice, and good jumping back air-to-air. Cancelable.
Snkc.gif+Snkd.gif 13/4 KD/- S HL
Mai98 jCD.png
Not bad, though the hitbox leaves a bit to be desired for an air Snkc.gif+Snkd.gif in my opinion. I think it's her jump speed/angle that makes it not as good as it could be. Still, there it is, and it's cancelable.
Neutral Jump
Snka.gif 6/7 -/- - H
Mai98 njA.png
Not a good move, avoid.
Snkb.gif 4/10 -/- - H
Mai98 njB.png
Not a good move, avoid.
Snkc.gif 4/9 -/- - H
Mai98 njC.png
Might be good to hit above you in the air, but Mai has other options.
Snkd.gif 6/9 -/- - H
Mai98 njD.png
Probably her best NJ tool, hits far from Mai. As a combo tool, D.png+Snka.gif is much better.
Command Normals

F.png + Snkb.gif

28/5/9 +6/+4 - H
Mai98 fB.png
Slow overhead, causes enough hitstun to combo a cr.Snkc.gif afterward. Advantage on block. When chained, is still really slow and not overhead, and cancelable (into air Qcb.png + P.png). You can slow cancel it, but remember it's REALLY slow. Can be used as a meaty.

F.png + Snkb.gif
28/5/9 +6/+4 S (air moves) HL

Df.png + Snkb.gif

7/9(7)4/32 -16/-18 - L,HL
Mai98 dfB1.png
Mai98 dfB2.png
Combos from any chainable attack, but it has really bad recovery. You can go under the highest fireballs with it (EX Ryo/EX Robert/EX Yuri/Takuma).
air D.png + Snka.gif 8/4 -/- - HL
Mai98 jdA.png
More hitstun/blockstun than a normal jumping attack, like Kyo's jumping D.png + Snkc.gif. Cancelable, slams on an air-to-air hit. Can crossup if you hit them right on the head.

Normal Throws

  • B.png/F.png + Snkc.gif - Breakable, forward knockdown, face forward, rollable.

  • B.png/F.png + Snkd.gif - Breakable, reverse knockdown, back turned, un-rollable.

  • B.png/F.png/D.png + Snkc.gif/Snkd.gif in air - Unbreakable air throw, front knockdown, face forward, un-rollable

Snkd.gif throw is preferred, since the startup doesn't have the blue grab 'effect', making it a bit harder to break on reaction.

Other Normal Moves

  • Jump: Mai is able to jump off of the wall by pressing forward when her back is to the wall.

Special Moves

  • Kachosen (Qcf.png + P.png) - Similar properties to Athena/Kensou fireballs (same things go under them ie some slides and Iori's super). Decent to zone with from long range. Not really to use at mid range, since she has Qcb.png + Snka.gif. Average recovery, etc. What more is there to say, it's a fireball!

  • Ryuu Enbu (Qcb.png + P.png) - Snka.gif version is a single hit, better recovery. Snkc.gif version has an extra hit when she starts to turn, which lets it combo from a light hit, and has a bit more recovery. This is your #1 move, use it and abuse it. Stays out for a long time, great as an anti-air especially from a distance, at least trades (in your favor) with any jump-in from the appropriate angle. Does a shit ton of stun damage (dizzies quickly). Great as a meaty.

  • Hakuro no Mai (Dp.png + P.png) - This move sucks. You can use it for chip damage at the end of a round.

  • Chijou Musasabi no Mai (charge (D.png > Ub.png/U.png/Uf.png + P.png - hold P.png) - (Wall dive) You an choose the direction you fly with Ub.png or Uf.png. Hold P.png to attack when you reach the wall. Snka.gif dives at a steeper angle than Snkc.gif. Not only is it good for runaway, but it builds meter, too. Mixup not attacking and attacking if they try to follow you in.

  • Hissatsu Shinobibachi (Hcf.png + K.png) - Snkb.gif version is faster, combos from light hits. Both are punishable. Use as a max combo damage ender when you don't have meter, and always hit-confirm it if you aren't punishing something. Good to use by itself as an easy punisher to some things that require a long range, fast attack.

  • Hisho Ryu En Jin (Dp.png + K.png) - (Flame Strike) Snkb.gif version is not invincible, Snkd.gif version is invincible up to the hit (ie it will trade with meaties at best as a reversal). An okay uppercut. The first hit doesn't knock down, and the second hit commonly whiffs at longer ranges, so be careful. A good idea to only use as anti-air or at point-blank range.

  • Kuuchuu Musasabi no Mai (Qcb.png + P.png) - Snka.gif version travels at a steeper angle, Snkc.gif version goes further. Safe if blocked from max distance. Use to punish things while jumping back, or cancel air attacks into it as a blockstring/hit a mash. Another tool to control the air with.

Desperation Moves

  • Cho Hissatsu Shinobibachi (Qcb.png Hcf.png + K.png) - Super unsafe, not invincible, pretty fast. Combos off of stuff, so...use it in a combo. MAX version is invincible up to the hit (can trade with active attacks) and does more damage.

  • Sui Chou no Mai (Qcf.png Qcf.png + P.png) - Snka.gif/Snkc.gif control the speed. Okay for stalling/chip damage at full-screen to end a round, but you can guard cancel roll or just roll through the 3rd fan in some situations. You can't slide/super under this like you can her normal Fan Toss. MAX version does more damage.

  • Houou no Mai (Qcb.png Qcb.png + P.png) - Snka.gif/Snkc.gif control the angle (steep/shallow respectively). Can cross-up, punishable. Good for shenanigans as an ambiguous crossup, but anyone good will just roll away. If the MAX version hits in the air (and it won't because it's not invincible as she jumps), it will do like a billion hits and damage, especially if it hits on counter.

Fastest Attacks

  • 0F: Snkc.gif throw; Snkd.gif throw
  • 1F: -
  • 2F: -
  • 3F: cl.Snkc.gif; st.Snka.gif; cr.Snkc.gif
  • 4F: cl.Snka.gif
  • 5F: cl.Snkb.gif; cl.Snkd.gif; st.Snkb.gif; cr.Snka.gif; cr.Snka.gif
  • 6F: -
  • 7F: st.Snkc.gif; cr.Snkd.gif; Df.png + Snkb.gif
  • 8F: st.Snkd.gif
  • 9F: -
  • 10F: -


  • Best jump-ins:
    • j.Snkd.gif

  • cr.Snkc.gif / cl.Snkc.gif >
    • (S)DM Qcb.png Qcb.png + P.png, Dp.png + Snkd.gif (Corner. Point blank. Standing. Tall character.)
    • (S)DM Super Killing Ninja Strike (Qcb.png Hcf.png + K.png)
    • (S)DM Qcf.png Qcf.png + P.png (Corner. Out of corner the last hit is blockable.)
    • Killing Ninja Strike (Hcf.png + Snkd.gif)
    • Snkc.gif Ryuu Enbu (Qcb.png + Snkc.gif)
    • Snka.gif Ryuu Enbu (Qcb.png + Snka.gif)

  • cr.Snkb.gif, cl.Snka.gif >
    • (S)DM Super Killing Ninja Strike (Qcb.png Hcf.png + K.png)
    • Snkb.gif Killing Ninja Strike (Hcf.png + Snkb.gif)
    • Snkc.gif Ryuu Enbu (Qcb.png + Snkc.gif)

  • F.png + Snkb.gif, cr.Snkc.gif >
    • (S)DM Super Killing Ninja Strike (Qcb.png Hcf.png + K.png
    • (S)DM Qcf.png Qcf.png + P.png (Corner. Out of corner the last hit is blockable.)
    • Killing Ninja Strike (Hcf.png + Snkd.gif)
    • Snkc.gif Ryuu Enbu (Qcb.png + Snkc.gif)
    • Snka.gifRyuu Enbu (Qcb.png + Snka.gif)

  • Corner only & meaty: Snka.gif Ryuu Enbu (Qcb.png + Snka.gif),
    • cr.Snkc.gif >
      • (S)DM Super Killing Ninja Strike (Qcb.png Hcf.png + K.png)
      • (S)DM Qcf.png Qcf.png + P.png (Corner. Out of corner last hit is blockable.)
      • Killing Ninja Strike (Hcf.png + Snkd.gif)
      • Snkc.gif Ryuu Enbu (Qcb.png + Snkc.gif)
      • Snka.gif Ryuu Enbu (Qcb.png + Snka.gif)
    • (S)DM Super Killing Ninja Strike (Qcb.png Hcf.png + K.png)
    • Snkb.gif Killing Ninja Strike (Hcf.png + Snkb.gif)
    • Snkc.gif Ryuu Enbu (Qcb.png + Snkc.gif)
    • st.Snka.gif / st.Snkb.gif

  • Simple buffers:
    • cr.Snkb.gif, cl.Snka.gif > (S)DM Qcb.png Hcf.png + K.png
      • cr.Snkb.gif, Qcb.png + Snka.gif > hcf + K.png (As cr.Snkb.gif is not cancelable, Qcb.png + Snka.gif will chain into a normal attack.)
    • cl.Snkd.gif / cl.Snkb.gif > (S)DM Qcb.png Hcf.png + K.png
      • Qcb.png + Snkd.gif/Snkb.gif > Hcf.png + K.png
    • cl.Snkd.gif > (S)DM Qcf.png Qcf.png + P.png
      • Qcf.png + Snkd.gif > Qcf.png + P.png

Note that cr.Snkc.gif is hit-confirmable, so never do Hcf.png + K.png or (S)DM Qcb.png Hcf.png + K.png on block obviously.

The qcb + Snkc.gif will hit only once from distance, in this case it will do a tiny less damage than Qcb.png + Snka.gif, but as Qcb.png + Snka.gif has less range, it is very specific the range where Qcb.png + Snka.gif will still hit and Qcb.png + Snkc.gif will do only one hit.

Strategy Corner

  • MAX: cr.Snkc.gif > Hcf.png + Snkd.gif

deals a little less than

  • cr.Snkc.gif > Qcb.png Hcf.png + K.png

Keep this in mind, when you need to decide whether to trigger MAX or keep meter for a DM.


Game Navigation

Gameplay Overview
Normal Characters
Blue Mary
Heavy D!
EX Characters
EX Andy
EX Billy
EX Joe
EX Kyo
EX Mai
Orochi Chris
Orochi Shermie
Orochi Yashiro
EX Robert
EX Ryo
EX Terry
EX Yuri
Omega Rugal