Counter Attacks (カウンター, Kauntaa), otherwise known as Reversals in some circles to help distinguish more from the traditional counter hit, are moves that are activated once the user has been hit by a certain attack. Counter Attacks are either regular special attacks or Super Moves, the latter of which are somewhat rare due to the usually offensive nature of Super Combos and the like. Counters generally have a weakness to projectiles and, in Street Fighter IV, moves that can break Super Armor.
Special Counters can generally be used to counter most attacks, though they have somewhat less versatility (e.g. Dudley's Cross-Counter not being able to counter low attacks); among the exceptions are Shin Akuma's Tenma Shurettou, which counters high and low attacks based on the input, and Gouken's Kongoshin, which counters high, middle or low attacks based on the input.
In the Street Fighter EX series, Vulcano Rosso, Hokuto, Darun Mister, Sanane and Hayate had specially designed counter attacks. Vulcano Rosso's counter attack had different variants depending on the kick intensity the player choose e.g, with heavy kick he would be able to catch low attacks and slam the opponent, while the light kick version was more of an air defense and the medium kick for the offensive strategy. Hokuto's attack was directed for medium height attacks mainly and as an anti-air at times too.
Some Super Combos and other similar moves act as counters. An example of such a move is Remy's third Super Art, Blue Nocturne; the counter triggers upon Remy being struck with his knee up after activation.
In Super Street Fighter IV, Fei Long's Gekirinken and Cammy's CQC (Cammy's Quick Combination) are the only two Ultra Combos that act as counters. Both share the Street Fighter IV counter's common weakness to Armor Breaking moves, and an overall weakness to projectiles.
- This should not be confused with Alpha Counters, or it's successors. The main difference is that Alpha Counter style attacks can only be activated while in blockstun, while Counter Attacks require the user to activate the attack before getting hit.