Part 21: Update #21 Invincibility-Frame Extension
I was always under the impression that the duck and sidestep dodges just modified Gene's hitbox, and never made him outright invincible like the backflip does.
Maybe they do, there are some moves that let you dodge projectiles (like Reverse Sweep, I've addressed this in a previous update) so it makes sense, although the only way to be sure would be to ask a developer who worked on the game. I guess gene's upper hitbox disappears when you up-dodge?
Speaking of invincibility frames
Charging an attack after any roulette move, hard knockdown or god hand deactivation makes you invincible for a short period of time.
For those who played the game before, ever noticed how you get i-frames once you run out of God Hand meter, use a roulette move or after getting back up from a hard knockdown? I see it as the developers being nice enough to give you a sort of grace period; getting hit or stunlocked right as you get back up on your feet wouldn't be what you call good design.
Gif related, notice how the mook on the left with the hammer completely whiffs his attack even though I'm standing still, then a split second later I get hit. This should give you an idea about how long this "grace period" normally lasts.
Quick reminder: Invincibility frames (i-frames) are "the period of time (measured in frames) during which a character cannot be damaged."
So in God Hand, this Invincibility-Frame Extension (IFE) trick is the ability to extend your i-frames with the use of a charge attack. This can be performed with Axe Kick, Charged Punch, Fist of Justice, and Fist of God.
Invincibility-frame extension with Charge moves (video)
There are 3 periods in the game where you can make use of IFE:
1) After God Hand deactivation (your god hand meter runs out);
2) After using a roulette move;
3) After a hard knockdown (where you get knocked out on the floor, Gene will get back up automatically. Attention however if you button mash as you hit the floor, Gene will do a quick backflip-rise and the i-frame extension won't be in effect then);
To understand this on a surface level, just use any of the listed charge moves above IMMEDIATELY after any of those aforementioned situations. What this does is basically "hold" whatever i-frames you have that are running out. However, I do say you need to do this immediately for a reason: It doesn't last forever. If you were to be a split second too late in attempting i-frame extension, or if you move forward, or turn around, or taunt, or do anything else but use a Charge move, you'd "drop" the last of your i-frames, making you vulnerable again. If done right however, you should be completely invulnerable for the whole period from the startup of your charge to the hit you deliver. You are invulnerable up until you release the attack, however depending on the timing, this also means you can trade hits with opponents (you get hit and they get hit as well.)
I-frames in this game seem to be inherently tied to the function of the TP Bar (god hand meter). The reasoning I have behind this basis is that when you have the god hand active and you use a charge attack, your TP bar will come to a stop up until you release it. Therefore, your i-frames seem to drain just as slowly as your TP Bar would if you were holding a charge under the God Hand's effect. Weird stuff.
Another fun thing about I-frame Extension: This concept of the charge hold seems for some reason to be inherently tied in with prompts as well. Some Japanese player found this exploitable abuse while fighting one of the 3 stooges, Bruce (Snake-y dude with the boomerang blade). After a Cobra Twist prompt you can hold a charge move, and he'll do his little recovery animation very slowly and unlike normal i-frame extension you can chain this with a dodge (can be seen in my stage 2-5 video). The only other boss I found that you can do this with is with Demon Shannon after her own pummel prompt which I'll showcase later.
Now on a related side note, every time you start a level, after a loading screen, Gene's hitbox isn't "physically" present in the game yet; this is a loading issue, see the out-of-bounds glitch in stage 1-4 for reference.
You might have noticed this at the beginning of my stage 2-5 video, Felix charged right through me and I didn't get hit.
This loading bug ties in with the i-frame extension trick. That's how I managed to land a charged punch counter-hit with ease at the beginning of the fight proper.
Another example, at the beginning of stage 1-1, you can go up in front of one of the two mooks and you'll get i-frames extension upon using Charged Punch.
The more you know