The King of Fighters '98 UMFE/Athena Asamiya

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Athena is primarily a keepaway character with a large bag of tricks to vary up her options. Her main gameplan focuses on using her projectile alongside anti airs, her solid poking buttons, and her large amount of movement options to stay unpredictable and frustrate the opponent. Her projectile can also be used to set up offense, as it provides frame advantage if blocked, allowing her to do strike/throw mixups with her command grab. Her weaknesses come in the form of weak high/low mixups, as her jump is slower and floatier than most characters, and a lack of big damage.

Changes from Previous Versions

98 to 98UM


  • dp+P hitbox lengthened
  • Added 2 frames more invincibility to dp+C
  • hcf+P damage reduced from 16 points to 7 points
  • j.qcb+B got 1 less frame of recovery
  • j.qcb+D got5 frames less recovery


  • A new DM, qcfx2+P, added
  • All the hits of j.qcfx2+K will now connect even at a low height

98UM to 98UMFE


  • st.A got 3 frames less startup but had its hurtbox extended
  • st.D got 4 frames less startup and the low invincibility now starts at frame 2
  • f+B had its hitbox lengthened upwards


  • qcb+A has 1 frame less recovery
  • qcb+C now travels faster
  • hcf+P now deals 10 damage, 7 when the throw is executed and 3 more when the opponent hits the ground
  • qcb+D got 15 frames less recovery, it is now possible to juggle after it in the corner

Normal Moves


  • cl.A: Good hitbox. Chainable and cancelable.
  • cl.B: Same as st.B.
  • cl.C: One of Athena's fastest normals and a staple combo tool. Cancelable.
  • cl.D: Has a nice amount of active frames, so good to use as a meaty. Has some low invincibility. Cancelable.


  • st.A: A standard jab with some good reach, useful for stopping hops. Chainable and cancelable.
  • st.B: A fast poking move. Whiffs on low crouchers.
  • st.C: Has good priority and is one of her best pokes.
  • st.D: Has quite a bit of startup but has a lot of low invincibility.


  • cr.A: Has some nice priority. Good to use in blockstrings. Chainable and cancelable.
  • cr.B: Athena's only low combo starter. Has good reach. Chainable and cancelable.
  • cr.C: A long poke with nice priority. Useful to poke with and then cancel into psycho ball or teleport. Cancelable on hit, block, and whiff.
  • cr.D: Has a nice upwards hitbox, meaning it can anti-air. Cancelable.


  • j.A: Has a great hitbox for air-to-airs with loads of priority.
  • nj.A: Great as an anti-air as the hitbox and priority are very similar to j.A.
  • j.B: Has a long hitbox. Can be used for instant overheads and crossups.
  • nj.B: It also has a good hitbox for air to airing.
  • j.C: This move has a large hitbox in front of Athena with some good priority, making it an excellent air-to-air. Can also be used as a jump-in attack. It does have more startup than her other air-to-air normals though, so you will need to press it earlier than her other buttons. Cancelable, giving it some niche combo utility.
  • nj.C: A jumping elbow strike. Another good air to air normal as it does more damage than her light options but it has less priority than her light options. Cancelable.
  • j.D: Your go-to jump-in button.
  • nj.D: Yet another good choice for air to airs. This normal has more active frames than her other air normals.

CD Normals

  • st.CD: This moves Athena forward a little. Has a good hitbox that presents a wall in front of Athena. Good to use in pressure when cancelled into special moves.
  • j.CD: Good to use as a jump-in for pressure. Cancelable.


Bit Throw: b/f+C (close)

  • Regular throw. Athena flings the opponent across the screen using psycho power making them land almost full screen away. Causes soft knockdown.

Psychic Throw: b/f+D (close)

  • Regular throw. Athena flings the opponent behind her across the screen using psycho power making them land full screen away. Causes soft knockdown.

Psychic Shoot: b/d/f+C (close, in air)

  • Untechable air grab. Athena throws the opponent down to the ground making them land 3/4 of a screen away. Causes hard knockdown and a backturned wakeup.

Command Moves

Phoenix Bomb: d+B (in air)

  • Athena does an aerial butt strike.
  • It has a nice hitbox below her that can crossup, and is cancelable.
  • On hit it sends the opponent flying 3/4 screen way. On block Athena bounces back into the air and can't do anything until she lands, making it very punishable. Luckily, you can cancel it into qcb+K on block to make it safer.
  • By performing d+B during a backdash Athena will go further and faster than she would with a regular backdash. The earlier you perform d+B, the further she flies.

Renkantai: f+B

  • Athena does a split kick that carries her off the ground a bit. Staple tool in combos and blockstrings, especially in the corner.
  • Hits high up so it can catch jumps as well. Cancelable.

Special Moves

Psycho Ball: qcb+A/C

  • Athena throws a ball shaped projectile. A version travels slower and C version travels faster.
  • The A version has a little less startup and more recovery than the C version.
  • The projectile can be hopped over, despite not being on the ground.
  • This move is the basis for Athena's zoning game as you can throw the A version and start moving about halfway through the projectile's flight. This means you can react to your opponent's attempts to deal with the fireball or move forward behind it to apply pressure.

Psycho Sword: dp+A/C (can be performed in the air)

  • Athena's DP. She produces a sword of Psycho energy that carries her upwards.
  • A version has startup invincibility that ends before the first active frame. C version has invincibility that covers the first 3 active frames of the move.
  • A version is your preferred anti air as it's faster, while C version is your reversal because of the invincibility.
  • The C version pops the opponent up in the air at the 3rd hit; against crouchers the third hit can whiff if there's enough distance between them and Athena, sending her up in the air while the opponent is on the ground ready to punish.

Phoenix Arrow: qcb+B/D (in air)

  • Athena curls up into a ball and ascends diagonally downwards.
  • The B version travels at a steeper angle while the D version travels at a shallower one. The D version ends with a big kick while the B version doesn't.
  • D version is very unsafe on block, but B version can be safe or unsafe depending on how it hits.
  • The D version causes a soft knockdown.

Super Psychic Throw: hcf+A/C (close)

  • Athena uses Psycho power to throw the opponent into the air.
  • The opponent is put into a juggle state as long as they're airborne.
  • If you don't hit them in the air they fall, take a little bit of damage and getting a hard knockdown.
  • The move has invincible startup frames so you can use it to go through moves and grab the opponent.

Psycho Reflector: qcb+B/D

  • Athena creates a shield of energy in front of her.
  • This move will reflect the opponent's projectiles and send them flying back at them.
  • B version comes out faster and causes a single hit while the D version comes out slower and hits 3 times.
  • It will not reflect projectiles that do not leave the opponent's body, like Ryo's or Yuri's projectiles, and instead just negates them.

Psychic Teleport: qcf+B/D

  • Athena teleports a set distance forward quickly. B version teleports her about 1/2 screen and D version teleports her fullscreen.
  • It has no invincibility so she can get hit out of it.

Desperation Moves

Psycho Ball Revolution: qcf,qcf+A/C

  • Athena shoots out a large, slow moving projectile and gets flung back a little.
  • A version travels slower while C version travels faster, they both have the same startup and recovery.
  • This projectile cannot be hopped over.

Phoenix Fang Arrow: qcf,qcf+B/D (in air)

  • Athena produces a series of qcb+K balls and then descends herself.
  • Just like the regular qcb+K, the B version travels shorter while the D version travels faster.
  • Will combo from cancelable air normals.

Shining Crystal Bit: hcb,hcb+A/C (can also be performed in the air)

  • Athena produces a set of energy orbs that rotate around her while she hovers in place.
  • A good DM that can be used as a reversal, as it has some invincibility, or as an anti-air.
  • It can also be used as a combo tool in the corner.
  • It has two followups: qcb+P and ABCD.
Crystal Shoot: qcb+A/C (can be held)
  • Will make Athena stop the hovering orbs and instead channel them into a projectile she can throw.
  • You can delay the throwing by holding the P button you used.
  • A makes the projectile travel in a straight line while C makes it curve upwards.
Deactivate: press ABCD
  • ABCD cuts the DM short.
  • Useful if you think you're going to be punished for doing the full thing.


General Notes

  • Any meterless combo ending in dp+P or qcb+D can have that move replaced with qcfx2+P for a meter-using version.
  • If you have the resources, qcfx2+P can be replaced with the MAX version in combos.



cr.B, cr.A, dp+A
Your main low hitconfirm combo.
cr.B/cr.A, f+B, dp+A
Another low combo option. f+B is safe on block, so there isn't much risk to this combo, even though you can't hitconfirm it.


j.X, cl.C, dp+A
Your main midscreen jump-in combo.
cl.C, f+B, dp+A
Heavy starter combo, will not work from a jump-in.

Command Grab

hcf+P, j.qcb+AD
Max damage meterless ender midscreen for her command grab.


(j.X), cl.C, f+B, qcb+D
Your go-to combo in the corner.
cr.B, f+B, qcb+D
Low combo in the corner.
hcf+P, qcb+D, dp+C
Max damage meterless ender in the corner for her command grab.

With Meter

j.A/j.C, qcfx2+K
Combo into DM from jumping normals.
hcf+P, j.qcb+AB, hcbx2+P
Max damage metered ender in the corner for her command grab. The j.qcb+AB should be done with a neutral hop. Both the normal and MAX DM work.

With Quick MAX

Strategy & Tips

  • Unblockable psycho ball setup: by throwing a Psycho Ball and using the teleport while the ball is still active you can make it into an unblockable. This becomes especially ueful after her command grab because it causes a hard knockdown. After the psycho throw you can force the opponent into a situation where they will have to deal with an unblockable meaty psycho ball, you do this By throwing a correctly timed psycho ball from about 1/2 away and then teleporting to make it unblockable. After the psycho ball hits you have enough time to combo after it. the opponent has to use an invincible recersal or time a precise wakeup roll in order to escape the fireball. Use B teleport when they're in the corner and D version everywhere else for this setup.
  • Phoenix Arrow bug: by pressing and holding down the A button alongside the B/D button during Phoenix arrow the move will magically do more damage. There is no downside to this so you can freely use it all the time to get more damage from your Phoenix Arrows.


King of Fighters 98 UM FE: Athena Guide by Mash It Out

External Links

The King of Fighters '98 Ultimate Match Final Edition

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