Ryu is not able to get in and rush down on opponent easily. His U1, is not really damaging especially when used with combo. His damage is also only average. At mid distance, he couldn?t just get in easily nor create big damage. Thus, it is important to play him consistently right from the beginning rather than to rely on come back wins. You have to be patient using him.
Ryu is especially strong if opponent is coming out to attack especially if they have to take risk and when he lock opponent on a mixup rush down. Therefore, you would want to always hold a life lead over your opponent. Use your pokes and throw fireball to gain life lead while advancing in for mix up cautiously. Make sure your defense, footsie and fireball are tip top. Your opponent will then have no choice but to come out of their shell. Try to knock down if possible to mix up pressure your opponent. The last thing you want playing ryu, is to allow your opponent a life lead and he keep turtling.
Ryu can knock down with:
s.lp - can link to other knock down move, especially useful against ken’s f.mk
cr.lp - can link to other knock down move
cr.mp - can link to other knock down move
cr.mk ? can cancel to ex-fb
all version of tatsu including air-tatsu
Each type of knock down is different. You cannot jump in on opponent that has a 3 frame reversal after a dp knock down. You would guarantee to eat a quick wake up reversal. Only exception is a 0 distance lp dp ground knock down. In this case, a safe jump in is possible.
A hk tatsu land you at distance 0 to the opponent. You could meaty attack/throw/dp fadc combo/bait reversal them on wake up, or walk back to bait whiff throw or reversal.
A mk tatsu land you at slightly further than cr.mk distance which you can walk forward to cr.mk mixup/cross up tatsu/kara throw/cross up j.lk/j.mk
A lk tatsu land you far away from your opponent. It is good if you want to keep opponent away from you. You could dash 1 step and then do a deep jump in attack/empty safe jump. The jump in attack is a safe jump in if the opponent?s reversal is > 3 frame.
You can dash forward after a ex-fb/dp knock down. You can then use cr.lp/cr.lk/kara throw/meaty cr.mk pressure.
Untechable knock down
You can do a deep jump in/safe empty/cross up tatsu jump in after a sweep.
You can do a cross up mk/empty cross up jump in/normal jump in/cross up tatsu after a forward throw. Or you could do an immediate lk tatsu that strangely, cross up the opponent and allow you enough time to do meaty moves. You could do 2 time tatsu to confuse him, then cr.lk, kara throw. Take note though, 2 times lk tatsu is a cheap trick that would get expose pretty soon so don’t spam it.
** There is a very strange property about ryu’s meaty attack from behind. After a forward throw, the hitbox of the down opponent will prevent you from getting too close from it. Thus, sometimes ryu player will want to jump behind the down charc so they can get closer to pressure him when he awake. The strange thing is that if you do any meaty attack from behind, the charc if hit, will always end up being hit standing (he can block low though). But if you do any meaty attack from front, he would end up either standing or crouching depending on what direction your opponent’s holding. So if you want to meaty hit your opponent standing, try doing it from behind. I did not try this using other charc, but my guess is that it should work for other charc and is invaluable for ken. I notice ken players doing the same on me and does catch me standing.
You can air tatsu forward to close the distance after a super and ultra.
After a back throw, you could walk backwards a bit and do a uncrouchable lk air tatsu that hits the front, which land you close enough to further mix up rush down. You can walk forward to cross up uncrouchable hk air tatsu to hit back. You could stay put on your position then do a deep safe jump in or empty jump. You could dash 1 step forward to j.mk/j/lk cross up. You could also dash forward to ground pressure with cr.lp/lk, meaty cr.mk etc or throw.
Do not discount the effectiveness of early dp. It is effective against charc that have a better jump height than ryu. Early dp, position your opponent closer to you when grounded for ground rush down. This is especially true for ex-dp. All charc that have a superior jump height, apart from maybe dictator are afraid of rush down tactic so you may wanna consider using that. If you want to rush rather than zone + poke, consider using early dp that hit. It should not trade when used properly in the right situation.
Come back Strategy
Ryu?s does not rely on ultra for come back, as ultra offer too little damages especially when used with combo. Most importantly, an ultra hit relieve opponent of the rush down pressure, making an come back unlikely. If you are falling behind by a big lead, try to land a tatsu on your opponent. It knocks down, dishes out good damage and position your opponent for further pressure. A j.hp, cr.lp x 2 !-> cr.hp xx hk.tatsu + throw on wake up dish out 400+ damage on opponent. If your mix up is good, you could kill your opponent with just one of these knock down.
So if you are behind, try to hit opponent with a strong combo that ends with tatsu instead of ultra. Save your ultra for combo which you cannot tatsu off, such as dp fadc ultra.