[INDENT=1]I’ve been working on a text based guide, recently, in order to accompany RRBA. I have half-way completed (more like 2/3) the guide and have decided to post what I currently have.[/INDENT]
[INDENT=1]This is by no means everything, mainly because a lot of stuff that I do personally can’t be explained, only learned.[/INDENT]
[INDENT=1]And also, I know that it’s a lot to read, and may not help as much as a video, but it’s a definitive resource nonetheless (and yes, a video is coming to be sure).[/INDENT]
[INDENT=1]So, here we go:[/INDENT]
Hakan has a standard defensive game. It isn’t notably good, but it also isn’t bad, either. Of course, due to the nature of Hakan, I will split this area into two separate sections, oiled and unoiled:
While dry, Hakan has admittedly worse options to defend himself with. However, he does of course have options as does any character. The strongest by far is simply blocking; you have a good amount of health, so eating at worst a throw is not much of an issue for Hakan. The second main option is EX rocket; it has hit invincibility and will grab any meaty or safejump that is attempted, and is overall a great tool to use (but not abuse).
Aside from wakeup (as the above applies), he has other tools to use. C.lp is a good button to press in instances of uncertainty; it has good range, and can combo into lp slide if you are guaranteed a punish, or as a poke OS. Aside from that, it can interrupt opponent’s pressure if they don’t properly account for it (or any other button, really). C.lp can also act as a specific move punish, such as for Fei’s rekkas or Rose’s improperly spaced soul spiral (though there are better options for that). Aside from c.lp, other buttons, such as s.mp and c.mp, can also work well in a defensive scenario.
If at any time, you find yourself being abused by a jumping opponent (such as neutral jumps, constant crossups, etc), there are several options to use. For neutral jumps, f.mp can beat most neutral jump attacks, save for those that have a strong, down-angled hitbox, like Adon’s j.mk/j.hk. Another option is a lp slide; this will not, however, work if they do not press a button, as it is a trip guard. For constant crossups, you have the ability to airthrow them in anticipation; or jump back fierce. If the jumping in your face is getting predictable, a j.mp > slide or air throw is recommended.
**While oiled, all of Hakan’s defensive techniques listed above apply; yet they are also improved, and some new ones are added. **
EX Rocket becomes increasingly more useful when oiled and under fire. It allows you to reversal after longer blockstrings and catch people from much farther away than dry.
By far the most important addition to Hakan’s defensive arsenal is the addition of BDNC (back dash normal cancel). With this, Hakan is given an amazing wakeup and overall defense tool. When done on wakeup, say, into a jab or mid, Hakan glides harmlessly past a meaty normal and slap them for their trouble. The attack can lead into a slide combo, thus turning a bad situation into a good one.
BDNC also has great utility outside of wakeup uses.
**If you get pressured with several frame traps and jabs and such, you can actually BDNC out of trouble and reversal the situation with low risk. BDNCing after the initiating normal of a frame trap results in you dodging the 2nd hit entirely (depending on the frame gap, of course; though the common 2/3 frame gap traps will be beaten.), and from there you can start a combo of your own. **
Again, while being oiled, you get increased power vs jump pressure, as you can then parry said jumps (which works for any jumpin) and start a combo/blockstring.
Of course, do not forget that Oilkan has a great backdash, on par with Rose and Chun. So, there is an inherent mixup with BDNC; you can continue the backdash and let it ride, or go with the BDNC normal. Letting the backdash go can be beat by some option selects, but it can also get you added distance and beat attempts to beat your BDNC normal (such as late timed normals). BDNC will end up beating options select (character-dependent; if they OS your backdash with an invincible normal that can reach, it could beat your BDNC.) The BDNC normal will always beat OS sweeps.
Hakan’s main goal is to get you down, and mess you up from there. Hakan has plenty of ways to do either, and I will list as many as I can here.
As a Hakan player, you must realize that getting in is the first step to victory. There is a certain formula for success, which, to simplify things, can be boiled down to getting a hit with slide. That being said, I will again split the discussion into oiled and unoiled.
Hakan can most definitely compete offensively while dry. This is a mandatory skill to learn as a Hakan player, as being oiled immediately is not always an option in some matchups (I.E. Dudley, Makoto, Fei).
While your options dry are not as clear-cut as when oiled, they are very much there. Dry, you’re going to be playing footsies most of the time, looking for an opportunity to A) oil, B), land a slide, or C), keep people out. Each path you decide to follow is of course matchup dependent. For example, you want to keep some characters out (Yun, Yang, Fei, Sakura). In others, you simply want to play footsies and score a knockdown (Dudley, Balrog, Ryu, Ken). And lastly, there are some which require you to patiently get inside (Dhalsim is the most notable) using oil opportunities.
If you must take the footsies path, you must be aware of the entire footsies mindset (not listed here; check Maj’s guide on Sonichurricane). However, what I will discuss are the normals commonly used in Hakan’s footsies.
-S.fp: A very good, long reaching normal. This will hit lows, functions as an anti-air, and is 2 hits to break focus. You will be using this often.
-F.mp: The Shoulder of Allah™ is a great tool for Hakan. It has a long-lasting hitbox, can cancel into slide, and lowers his hurtbox, serving well to dodge under high-angled pokes and jump moves alike. Aside from that, the move simply overpowers many others. Note that as this move moves forward, it can be whiff punished by certain characters.
-F.mk: A good poke. It is fast, has a far hitbox, and can go over lows. While certainly not amazing, it serves its job well.
F.fp: This is a somewhat lesser-used move in footsies due to its slow recovery, but when properly placed, it can be devastating. It deals 160 damage on natural hit, and 188 on counterhit. Using this against characters who continually try to move in and poke will result in hefty damage on their part.
F.rh: While certainly not used often, f.rh is a great move to use interspersed with other normals. It hits low, does a nice bit of damage, and disrupts your opponent’s mental balance. Do not abuse, however, as a mis-spaced one could result in a punish for your enemy.
If you don’t need (or want) to play footsies, you can simply stay back, and play it turtle style. A turtle Hakan is good in a few key matchups, and he can work in more; but again, Hakan wants you knocked down, so don’t expect the best results.
Keeping people out with Hakan can be done dry or oiled, depending on the situation. For instance, the Zangief matchup; In this matchup, Hakan must utilize his superior ground normals to make sure Gief cannot get in. Normals, most notably s.fp, must keep him away from you at all costs. This is done through a combination of s.fp, f.mp, jumps, etc.
**The same principles apply to the twin matchups, though the match flowchart is slightly different. Hakan wants to keep the twins out at first, preventing them from dive-kicking their way in with normals like s.fp and c.mp. This could eventually change, however, as the twin may want to build meter with palm; a good time to oil. The key difference, however, between the twins and Gief, is that when you knock the twins down, you keep them down and make them guess. **
**When oiled, Hakan’s mindset greatly shifts priorities. While most of his matchup types stay the same, they become slightly altered. For instance, oiled, Hakan’s footsies become much more threatening thanks in part to FADNC. Using FADNC allows Hakan to simply maneuver through pokes, cover distance, and get inside for a low cost risk. **
Due to how focus attacks work in SFIV (namely proximity guard), FADNC becomes more threatening. When fishing for a poke, an enemy will be locked in place, unable to walk backward (they can still walk forward, jump, or backdash, however), allowing you set up a few things. You can:
**-Cancel the focus with a dash and cancel the dash into a normal, such as a jab in order to start a jab block string. **
-Let the focus ride (at this point you can determine if the focus made contact or if they blocked due to the hitlag). If the focus hits, combo into f.mp xx slide. If it’s blocked, you have a free blockstring, and can go into jabs, crouching shorts, mids, whatever you feel you need.
-Cancel the focus into a dash into SPD. This is good to catch people who have been trained to block after they see you focus.
**-Focus and then backdash. This is a good baiting technique; if you meet those players who are oh so ready to ultra you for trying to focus, just backdash. Of course, this causes you to lose distance, especially if they didn’t do anything; though, you are safe, and you can attempt to use said space to lk oil to get more time. **
-Focus and then BDNC. This is also good to catch someone trying to punish your backdash, depending. It would be preferred to cancel with a jab, so as to minimize recovery. This is mainly used to help baiting without giving up space, and thus keep you close to get in again.
**Again, footsies remain important to Hakan whether he’s unoiled or not, though when oiled his abilities are greatly enhanced. The main reason is the increased range on his normals, though some other properties may change as well (such as f.hk now having an untech knockdown). **
Another good tool that is added to your arsenal when oiled is the slide > FADNC. You slide, and FADC on block, then cancel the dash forward into jabs or crouching shorts, letting you in for only two bars (and Hakan builds plenty of those).
So, you’ve successfully got inside, and now you need to get some damage. Well, there are a few ways to do just that. For the sake of this piece, I’m going to separate the information in to two categories: Blockstrings/Goals, and Offensive Setups.
So, you get inside, and now you need to do some damage because your opponent just blocked whatever you threw at them. This is fine, and is a crucial skill to learn in order to open up your opponent.
The main game Hakan has to play when up close is the throw/counterhit/tech game. The basic blockstring you will use is going to be some variation of:
S.lk, s.lp, (c.lp/f.lk) xx slide. (On hit)
And, other situations:
S.lk, normal throw. (If they block s.lk)
S.lk , s.lp, s.lp, (c.lp/f.lk) xx slide (after the s.lk, the s.lp will counterhit a throw tech.
S.mp, s.lp, (c.lp/f.lk) xx slide (the s.lp after s.mp will catch slower buttons (4 frame buttons, to be specific) more easily than s.lk > s.lp.)
Remember that there is definitely some variability in these strings. For instance, you could do something like s.lk, s.lp, s.mp on block, then f.rh. The s.mp will set you up to hit the f.rh at max-ish range, making it safe on block. Another key thing you can add in is a dash in following a blockstring, provided your opponent lets you. If they don’t like to press buttons (or otherwise aren’t doing so), you can dash in and force another mixup.
**If you land in a jump-in but are unable to initiate a combo (such as calling a poke and jumping it, but not fast enough to actually hit), you can get other, more damaging setups. **
J.rh, throw. (This should be your main option, as with all other throw setups. This allows you to get into the more damaging stuff)
J.rh, delay, s.mp (CH), s.mp, f.lk xx slide. (This is a very damaging, simple counterhit combo to catch crouch tech.)
Don’t forget what can happen after blockstrings. Say you do a simple s.lp, s.lp on block. You walk backwards, and notice that they keep pushing a button (like a jab or something) in an attempt to defend themselves. Next time this situation occurs, simply walk backwards and then do a f.mp xx slide hitconfirm (hitconfirm with lp slide.).
**While oiled, your potential greatly increases. From here, you opponent has to worry about you from a much farther distance than unoiled due to SPD. Aside from that, it is much easier to put yourself back into the enemy’s face after a blockstring thanks to DNC. When you get pushed out, FADNC back inside, absorbing a hit along the way just in case they try to hit you with a low. **
As stated previously, SPD makes you threatening from farther away. You can SPD someone after 3 or 4 blocked jabs. This makes the opponent more wary of you for longer, increasing your options.
Another bonus you get when you’re oiled is the c.lp xx slide FADNC. This allows you to force your way inside into some more pressure; if they don’t block, then, well, you get a free knockdown.
When Hakan gets the knockdown he’s looking for, he has a myriad of ways to keep you there. Hakan’s oil slide is his main knockdown; the following is a list of possible setups post oil slide.
-Whiff s.mp, j.rh. Beats most reversals (makes them whiff), can possibly lose to crouching.
-Small step backwards, j.rh. Safejumps 4f reversals, can OS oil slide for backdashes/other moves (i.e. Rose EX spiral)
-LK Oil up, safe to moves that have 2f startup or more.
**-Backdash, RH DDT (delay slightly). Discourages crouching on wakeup, can cancel DDT to eliminate threat of punish. **
-Backdash, meaty lp slide. Encourages crouching on wakeup, safe.
-Whiff s.mp, delay a tiny bit, fp meaty slide. Is advantage on block and gives a three way mixup: jab, throw, counterhit.
-Whiff s.mp, delay RH DDT. Antithesis to the above.
-Backdash, forward dash. Gives a three way mixup: jab, throw, counterhit.
There is a lot of room for creativity. These are just the few that I use on a regular basis.