What is button plinking? (Explained by an Expert)

Button plinking, also known as priority linking or simply plinking, is a technique used in fighting games to execute certain moves or combos more consistently and effectively.

The term “plinking” is derived from “priority linking,” as it takes advantage of the priority system often found in fighting games when multiple button inputs are pressed simultaneously.

Plinking works by pressing two attack buttons rapidly, with the higher priority button pressed slightly before, the lower priority one. The result is that the game registers two inputs for the higher-priority attack while still using the lower-priority attack’s input window.

This technique effectively doubles the input window for the desired move, making it easier to execute frame-perfect actions or combos.

Here’s an example of how plinking works:

  1. In a fighting game, you want to execute a move that requires precise timing with a medium punch (MP) button press.
  2. You use plinking by pressing the heavy punch (HP) button slightly before the MP button.
  3. The game registers two consecutive MP inputs because of the input priority system, doubling the desired move’s input window.

Plinking is especially useful in games with tight input timing requirements, such as the Street Fighter series.

It can help players more consistently perform difficult combos and special moves, giving them an edge in competitive gameplay.

It’s important to note that the effectiveness of plinking may vary depending on the specific game mechanics and input systems of different fighting games. Additionally, while plinking can improve input consistency, mastering it requires practice and precise timing.

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Sarah "Combo Queen" Turner

Sarah's love for fight sticks sparked from her intense sibling rivalry with her brother in classic fighting games. As she grew up, the friendly competition escalated into a burning desire to be the best. Sarah's well-known for her lightning-fast reflexes and uncanny ability to string together devastating combos. She's now using her skills to help others level up their game with the right fight sticks.