Injustice 2 is a fighting game, and there aren’t a lot of those around anymore. It’s no surprise that people are having difficulty with some of the more traditional fighting game techniques. This article covers how to perform a special move cancel in Injustice 2 so you’re not left behind by your friends. While special move canceling isn’t new to Injustice 2, new players or anyone who hasn’t played a fighting game in awhile might have some difficulty.

How to Special Move Cancel

To perform a special move cancel in Injustice 2 you need to first determine what move you’re going to start off with. Usually this will be a combo for your character of choice, although you can special cancel a single attack as well. Let’s take Batman as an example. One of his combos is Vengeance (Square, Square, X on PS4 or X, X, A on Xbox). If you’re canceling a combo that means you only need to worry about the last hit in the combo. In this case it’s X on PS4 or A on Xbox.

If you pull up Batman’s move list in Practice Mode, scroll right to Combo Attacks, then scroll down to highlight Vengeance. To the right of the input notation you’ll see Move Data and Frame Data. Under Frame Data is Cancel. For this particular combo the Cancel data is 34. That means you have 34 frames to cancel the attack after you input X (PS4) or A (Xbox). That’s a little over half a second. It may not seem like a long time, but it actually is.

Let’s say you want to cancel into the Slide Kick (Back, Forward + X or A). All you need to do to special cancel the Vengeance combo into the Slide Kick is to hit Back, Forward + X or A right after the last hit in the combo. To make this easier, you can actually start the Back, Forward input early. With a three-hit combo like Vengeance, it’s recommended buffer the special move input, which means you press Back after you hit the second attack (Square or X in this case) in the combo. That gives you a little more time to get the special move off.

Your button inputs should look something like this (on PS4): Square, Square, Back, X, Forward + X.

Of course you can always wait until the end of the combo, then quickly input the special move notation so you get something like this (on PS4): Square, Square, X, Back, Forward + X. You don’t have to be super fast with the Back, Forward + X. A lot of people rush the special move and end up missing it. You have a lot more time than you think you do. If you execute the special move too soon, it may cut off the last hit or two of your combo, so make sure you take your time. You can buffer the directional input of the special move a little early, but don’t hit the attack button of the special move until after you’ve completed the rest of the combo.

In the past people have complained about the special move inputs in NetherRealm fighting games. However, for Injustice 2 the development team went above and beyond by including input shortcuts to make special moves easier to perform. You can also change the way special moves are executed if you prefer to hit diagonals or not.

At the pause menu, scroll down to Wireless Controller Preset. At the bottom of the new window that opens, you’ll see Release Check, Alternate Control and Input Shortcuts. All three of these options can make special moves and special cancels more difficult or much easier depending on how you like to play. Take a look at how each one works to determine if you want it on or off.

Release Check - In addition to pressing Back, Forward + X for a special move, you can also hold X, press Back, Forward, then release X. This works for Down, Forward or any other special move notation as well. Some people turn this off because they will accidentally get a special cancel when they don’t want one if the combo happens to end with the same attack button as a special move.

Alternate Control - When turned on you have to hit the diagonals to perform circular inputs. For example, Batman’s Straight Grapple is normally Down, Forward + Square (PS4) or X (Xbox). You don’t need to hit the diagonal between Down and Forward to execute the special move. However, with Alternate Control turned on you have to input the command with Down, Diagonal Down-Forward, Forward + Square or X. If you don’t hit the diagonal it won’t execute the special move.

Input Shortcuts - With Input Shortcuts turned on, the game is a bit more lenient with the directional inputs on special moves. If you have a hard time executing special moves, turn this on to make things easier for you. However, if you’re getting a lot of accidental special moves when you don’t want them, make sure this option is turned off.

To find out how to unlock Darkseid and Brainiac or other advice and strategies, head over to our Injustice 2 game hub!