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The Alpha Counter (アルファカウンター, Arufa Kauntaa) is a maneuver first introduced in the Street Fighter Alpha series.
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Alpha Counters are performed by executing a quarter-circle forward motion (specifically a "9-to-6 o' clock" motion) and pressing either kick or punch while blocking; if done properly, the user will block their foe's attack and counter with a predetermined special attack.
In the original Street Fighter Alpha, each character would use either the punch or kick button, depending on the character in question. In Street Fighter Alpha 2 and 3, all characters use both buttons, with one corresponding to high attacks, and the other to low.