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Street Fighter 6: How to Play Zangief


With Street Fighter 6 now in the hands of eager gamers everywhere, it’s crucial to familiarize oneself with one’s playable characters and one’s opponents if one hopes to succeed. Zangief is Street Fighter’s go-to grappler because of his superiority in close quarters and his ability to inflict significant damage with command grabs. As a professional wrestler, he wants nothing more than to face the most formidable opponents and prove that his technique is unparalleled. Learn the ins and outs of using Zangief in Street Fighter 6 by reading this guide!

Read Also: Street Fighter 6: Dhalsim Guide

Who is Zangief in Street Fighter 6?

In Street Fighter 6, Zangief is a seasoned coach who cares just as much about his students’ development as his own. The Red Cyclone, as he is known, debuted in Street Fighter 2. Russian-born Zangief’s mission during the Cold War was to prove that his country’s military could hold its own against any in the world.

Zangief is one of the most recognizable gaming figures despite being more of a villain in the series. He has appeared as a Spirit in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate and in other fighting games like Tekken x Street Fighter. He is 7 feet tall, making him far taller than the other characters, including Luke, who is the series’ new mascot.

Zangief Strategies

Zangief focuses more on the quality of his attacks than the quantity, in contrast to most characters who are known for their impressive and lengthy combinations. Despite being one of the game’s slower characters, Zangief is no pushover. When employed properly, his two- or three-hit combos can wreak havoc on the health bars of his opponents.

Zangief’s strength as a grappler makes him particularly dangerous in close quarters. Most players freak out when Zangief is within grappling range because of the continual fear of a command grab. So that the mental games may commence, players must first work their way into grappling range.

Master the SPD

It’s not just that Zangief is a professional wrestler; it’s also that his Spinning Piledriver (SPD) deals most of his damage. When used by a Zangief player at the correct time, the SPD is legendary for stealing rounds.

Street Fighter 6: How to Play Zangief

Nevertheless, the SPD command is widely regarded as one of the game’s more challenging inputs. Tossing out SPDs on a whim requires players to grasp the 360-degree movement input. In Street Fighter 6, players have the option of only going 225 degrees to complete the technique, however maining Zangief still requires a lot of practice.

The Modern Controls have made SPDs simpler for new players to learn, but the Classic controls are the best bet for unleashing the game’s full destructive potential.

Patience is Key

Players should keep in mind that Zangief is a massive mountain man, hence his strikes are quite slow. The trade-off is that their damage output is significantly increased when they do connect. Zangief rewards patient play, as he must wait for the right opportunities to settle into his groove and begin pummeling his foes.

Street Fighter 6: How to Play Zangief

It’s important for players to have a feel for their opponents’ play styles, such as whether or not they tend to spam projectiles or anti-airs. How often do they jump? Understanding the other fighter is crucial for deciding whether to cautiously advance into grappling range or go for broke.

Using Heavy Normals

Zangief’s Heavy Normals, when not followed by one of his command grabs, are very effective. Zangief can get an advantage by closing the gap through knocking his opponents down. His down+Heavy Kick is a devastating sweep that can take out foes from astonishing distances. His Headbutt is a forward + Heavy Punch that is sneakily quick and has a block bonus. This move can also be Drive Canceled for a fast SPD.

Street Fighter 6: How to Play Zangief

Tick Throws and Mind Games

Once Zangief is in range, he can unleash a variety of devastating attacks. However, since most players are aware that an SPD may be on their way, a Tick Throw (Light Punch + Light Kick) is a good alternative.

Street Fighter 6: How to Play Zangief

Zangief’s arsenal of Throws includes moves that can push foes against a wall or assist him or her break free from a tight spot. Zangief can switch sides with an opponent if he backs away from them (either Back or Down Back) and then throws them. Players of Zangief can keep playing the SPD mind games even after taking a hard knockdown from a throw.

Zangief’s Strengths

Zangief’s Special Moves are quite powerful and may deal a lot of damage. This implies that Zangief can win with a single devastating grapple whereas other characters would need to land follow-up attacks or string combos to claim victory.

You should always be inching closer to your opponents, as this will cause them to worry about an impending grapple and potentially throw them off guard. Even at midrange, Zangief poses a significant threat due to his ability to close the distance and rush in for grapples quickly. The majority of the roster consists of characters who are not grapplers, thus keeping them on their toes by making them guess whether you’re going for a striking strike or a grapple might be challenging.

When Zangief’s super meter is full, he becomes an extremely frightening foe, as even the most seasoned fighters will go into severe defensive mode in an effort to prepare for his unblockable Bolshoi Storm Buster.

Zangief’s Weaknesses

Zangief’s air defenses aren’t the strongest. His arsenal of anti-air weapons is extensive, but its slow firing rate makes it vulnerable to counterattack. Zangief is slow not only in the air but even on the ground. He is, in reality, the game’s slowest player character. You won’t do as much damage in an exchange as Luke or Ken, so don’t try to imitate their style.

Instead, focus on being an overwhelming danger while attacking. Zangief excels in both mid- and close-range engagements, dealing a lot of damage with each blow; nevertheless, his attacks have knockback and can push his opponents out of his effective range, forcing him to repeatedly reduce the distance between himself and his foes after each of his hefty blows.

How to play Zangief 

Even though he moves more slowly than the other characters in Street Fighter 6, Zangief possesses an incredible amount of power, notably in his throws. Although he is capable of dealing significant damage when in close proximity to his foes, bridging the distance between them and himself can be challenging.

Street Fighter 6: How to Play Zangief

Despite this, he has a longer reach than others, which means that even his chip damage is substantial when he is at a mid-range distance. The Screw Piledriver, which is his hallmark move, is a devastating throw that can easily break an opponent’s defense and can be tough to recover from.

How to Counter Zangief

Zangief, like most grapplers, places a premium on getting close to his opponent. To make the most of his command grabs and lightning-fast combinations, he needs to close the distance. Zangief’s game plan is effectively shut down by zoners and fighters who can shoot projectiles, such as JP and Dhalsim, who are incredibly powerful against him.

Keeping the fight at least in mid-range forces Zangief to close the distance, yet apart of Drive Rushed special attacks, he lacks any swift gap-closing skills.

Street Fighter 6: How to Play Zangief

When a Zangief player jumps or initiates an attack, players should be wary because there is a good probability they are priming their SPDs. If this happens to you, jumping away or attacking from above can let you cross up and finish off a swift combination.


Is Zangief good or bad?

He is a famous Russian wrestler and national hero who enjoys taking on formidable opponents. Although he is presented as a hero in the video game series, in several adaptations he is portrayed as a villain, most often as a member of Shadaloo and henchman of M. Bison.

Who can beat Zangief?

When facing off against Zangief, speed is your greatest asset. He is easily defeated by fast, agile characters from Street Fighter 6. Characters who can move quickly and unexpectedly, like Ken, Cammy, and Chun-Li, are among the best in the series.

Who can beat Ryu?

It would be a lengthy and grueling battle, much like the one between Captain America and Iron Fist, but Shang-Chi’s superior control of chi would finally prove decisive.

Can Ryu beat Superman?

Superman is just as powerful as the Street Fighter protagonist Ryu, and he has far too many options to deal harm to the latter. Superman has too many advantages over Ryu, what with his flight, strength, and x-ray vision.