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The Somersault Kick (サマーソルトキック Samāsoruto Kikku?), also known as the Flash Kick, is one of Guile's special attacks, introduced with him in Street Fighter II. His friend Nash has a similar version called Somersault/Flash Kick Shell (サマーソルトシェル Samāsoruto Sheru?). Two upgraded versions of the Somersault Kick exist.

All appearances Arcade Stick CDArcade-Stick-Up+Arcade Button Kick
Street Fighter 6
Arcade Stick CD+Modern SP or Arcade Stick CDArcade-Stick-Up+Modern SP



Official Street Fighter II artwork of Guile performing a Flash Kick.

"Perform a backwards somersault while unleashing a devastating kick. It is invincible against jumping attacks, making it useful as an anti-air technique."
Street Fighter 6

Executed by charging downward then pressing upward and kick, the user performs a backflip, kicking his opponent harshly as he does. The attack is almost instantaneous, and the arc of the kick leaves a flash in its wake.

The size of the flash and the height achieved as performed are usually determined by the strength of the kick used, as well as the damage, stun, recovery:

Version Effect
Arcade-Button-LKick Has the least damage, height, stun, and recovery.
Arcade-Button-HKick Grants the most damage and stun with the greatest height, but the longest recovery.
Arcade-Button-MKick A balance of the two.
2 kick buttons Hits twice, does even more damage and stun than heavy punch, and has longer invincibility.[1]

In Street Fighter V, Nash does not use the regular Somersault Shell, but rather an entirely different move called Sonic Scythe. During his second V-Trigger, Nash can use the attack as a followup from his dash, under the name Justice Shell. The Flash Kick is also used by Shadow as well, and in his Extra Battle, Shadow can use Justice Shell as a standalone move.

Marvel vs. Capcom series[]

A non-charge variation (simply downward then upward without charging the former) of this move exists in Marvel vs. Capcom 2, which can be done only in mid-air. In X-Men vs. Street Fighter, the Somersault Kick sends out an arc of energy diagonally-upwards in the form of an energy wave, which acts as a normal projectile which only dissipates when it clashes with another instead of upon impact of a target.


There are visual differences in how Guile and Charlie execute the move. Guile simply leaps up and executes the overhead kick with one leg while performing a moonsault, rather than a somersault. Charlie turns to face away from the opponent and performs a front-flipping kick with one leg before finishing it off with another kick from the other leg, all while somersaulting forward.


The kick's speed means it is useful as a nigh-impenetrable anti-air counter. It is also good for zoning, ending combos, punishing, and preventing certain cross-up attempts. The EX Somersault Kick is the best anti-air variant (with light kick coming second), and heavy kick can set up juggles.[1]

The highest priority of the move is during the deepest point of impact, i.e. if the move is performed at the last possible moment (especially during the beginning of the move). If used at this point, the Somersault Kick will beat almost any other normal attack, short of a Shoryuken.

In the original Street Fighter II, the move had no recovery time on landing, having been designed as analogous to a normal jump attack. This meant Guile could often beat an opponent to a throw, even if the Somersault Kick is whiffed. This feature was removed in subsequent games, and the recovery time on landing was changed to match that of the Shoryuken. However, it still can be rather difficult to punish in some situations, mainly due to how fast the user starts to fall to the ground compared to the delayed falling of other similar anti-air specials.

Also compared to other anti-airs, what makes the Somersault/Flash Kick stand out from the aforementioned anti-airs is how the hitbox works. Normally, most anti-air specials have a lasting hitbox all the way to its apex, but in the Flash Kick's case, the hitbox notably "dies" out upon hitting the peak while moving in a back-flipping arc as opposed to being consistent throughout until the apex. Due to this, there are specific situations where the Somersault Kick may whiff against midair targets properly spaced from it and/or high enough above it, and it usually has a better horizontal hitbox in this regard.

In the Street Fighter IV series, all versions of the move break armor and grant split-second invulnerability during start-up. The EX version offering more invincibility and damage.

Similar Moves[]

Appearances in other games[]

  • For the most part, a somersault kick is often a common move for characters that partake in Jeet Kune Do.
  • In Project X Zone, Frank West from the Dead Rising series uses a Somersault Kick in two of his special moves, as in his said home series Frank is able to naturally learn a Somersault Kick technique in that vein.
  • In The King of Fighters series, the Korea Justice Team (Kim Kaphwan, Chang Koehan, and Choi Bounge) each have a Somersault Kick-style move called the Hien Zan (Flying Swallow Slash; Choi's is comically written in a different kanji however and Chang always slips and falls on his back upon attempting it).
    • Ash Crimson's Nivose is also functionally identical to the Flash Kick, but visually closer to Nash's Somersault Shell.
  • In Double Dragon Neon, a boss called Mecha Biker, designed as a reference to Mega Man, sometimes performs a Somersault Kick-like if the player(s) is standing directly in front of him.
  • In Remember Me, the protagonist Nilin can use a Somersault Kick-like attack as one of her Chain attacks.
  • In X-Men: Next Dimension, Cyclops has a move called the Power Somersault Kick, which involves him kneeing the opponent and then performing the Somersault Kick. There are three variations of this move.
  • In the Killer Instinct series, the character Cinder can do the Fire Flash, a move which is pretty much the same as a Somersault Kick.
  • In Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, Guile uses this as one of his Assist Trophy moves kicking opponents close to him for the summoner.
  • In Fight'n Rage, Gal has a double Somersault Kick as one of her ground arts.



Street Fighter Alpha 3, Guile's Flash KickStreet Fighter Alpha series, Charlie's Somersault ShellFlashKickOld



  • In Street Fighter Alpha 3, the color of flash changes based on the color swap of the character using it. For example, if the player uses Charlie's red costume, the flash will be red instead of teal. In addition, Charlie's version, when performed with heavy kick, will always hit twice.
  • Scott Adkins is best known for doing Somersault Kick in all his films.
  • In Street Fighter II V, during the final battle against Bison, Ryu performs a Somersault Kick nearly identical to Guile's, despite not being able to do so in the game series (shown in gallery).
  • In the live-action Street Fighter film, Guile, portrayed by Jean Claude Van Damme, performs an actual Somersault Kick during his fight against M. Bison.
  • The light kick follow-up of Rufus's Messiah Kick is visually similar to Somersault Kick with less theatrics and does less damage. It also has less overall invincibility with Rufus's invincibility running out on his attack's first active frame while Flash Kick's invincibility interlaps with the startup.
  • The Flash Kick appears as Guile's unique emote in Fortnite, where it can be used by any character, meaning that besides him, it can also be performed by Ryu, Chun-Li, Cammy, Sakura and Blanka in that game.
  • While officially referred to in the movelist as Somersault Kick in Street Fighter 6, Guile calls out Flash Kick for its just frame variation.
  • Chun-Li's neutral jumping Medium Kick, in which she performs a similar flipping kick, is known officially as the Kaenshuu (夏塩蹴), which consists of the Japanese kanji for summer, salt, and kick, referencing Guile's own technique.