Top 3 things you'd tell a new Hakan player

I think if we each write down the three things we consider essential to Hakan, we could come up with a better idea about how to play him, and probably discover some things as well.

I’ll start -

  1. J.LK is amazing for tick throws, claiming air dominance and general mix up shenanigans.

  2. As a meaty, jump behind your opponent and activate a 360 grab. If done right you’ll grab like an oil dive but safer because you’ll still grab them if they manage to crouch or attack. EX.SRK’s and Get-up Ultra’s are your only worry here.

  3. T+HK is an amazing tick set up for U1, dashing under opponents and gaining ground when crisco canceling. From nearly full screen and oiled, try dashing, T+HK to 360 Grab. You’ll grab them and they won’t even see it coming.

Hmm. Good idea. But, I think you’re getting a wee bit too technical for new players. Try this.

  1. Don’t underestimate oiling up. In fact, it’s okay to create situations intended JUST FOR oiling up (like, base throwing them to the corner to create space). Oil is life for Hakan, so don’t think you don’t need it.

  2. Know Hakan’s normals, they are varied and are the base of his game. Know which ones are overheads, and don’t be afraid to muscle people around with HK.

  3. Know when to slide and when not to, and if you think it’s a situation when you shouldn’t slide, pick a shorter slide (IE: if you think the HP version will be you thwomped, do the LP version and see if you can draw your opponent out).

Some addendums to what you threw up there, MRDO:

  1. As a tick throw, I would say J.MK is far better, considering you can use the toe of Hakan’s boot (which is technically the end of the hitbox) to make the connection just as well. J.HK is excellent too if you overjump the opponent on their wake up a bit. Using J.MK is a godsend against turtling characters like guile since if you jump in just the right spot you won’t have to fear a flash kick (or at least they won’t think they can hit you with it, true story).

  2. I would typically say that I would agree with this, but frankly, I think people expect that move first from grapplers. Seeing as their escape in that situation is as simple as jumping straight up, I wouldn’t rely on it unless you get them flustered.

I’ve been working with U1 setups this weekend. I still prefer U2 overall, but I figured it couldn’t hurt to try to work in some uses for U1. I would add that while it’s almost impossible for a lot of people to do it, trying your hand at the crisco cancel standing 720 is the way to go, especially if you’ve conditioned them to block low to keep out errant oil slides. Speaking of oil slide, using the short, medium and long version of the slide can lead to some great setups for U1 against people who love to block and respond with a basic throw (which they all do eventually). Zone yourself in a way that your slide will come up just short ( for instance, if you’re midscreen from your opponent, the LP slide will put you just in front of your opponent enough that you wont trigger a block), and before Hakan pops up, buffer U1. This same setup works extremely well with his SPD as well, though it works even better if you’re oiled up, for range sake.


Additional note, I think I cramped my hand practicing standing 720s…Then I think my fingers fried when I started working in the standing 720 from an oil dash. :wink: haha.

Not a bad idea, I’m liking it. Then we can maybe collect some of the good ones for a good beginners’ reference.

1.) Hakan has numerous AA options, and it’s going to be difficult if you’re trying to use only one. Learn your AA options in and out, so you can apply them to the appropriate situations. ie, s.HP is great for closer and much farther ranges, but is weak against stronger horizontal hit boxes that trade with it or stuff it. f.MP and air throw are also great options. :lp: slide is a very solid tool against jump-ins, but can be empty jumped for a massive punish, so use it sparingly. When in doubt, slide away!

2.) Before you learn oiled Hakan, learn dry Hakan. If you know how to play when you have no oil, it’ll be easier to find the appropriate moments to oil up.

3.) I’ll think of a third one >.<

Good point on dry Hakan, as he has some uses that oiled just cant do. Really, I consider Hakan a lot like Gen, in that oiled/unoiled are like two different stances.

Excellent point on 1), sometimes not knowing how each AA option is best applied can result in a loss. Honestly, lately I had been forgetting his AA throw, which has come in handy against the scrubbier Twins players. But, my favorite AA option is J.MP and following up with LP oil slide since the punch in air knocks them down just like Ryu’s in air punch. I believe you can use this as a U2 setup also, though I’ve never done it in a match.

Slide is very much a trump card for people who try safe jumps or try to shallow jump multiple times to set up dives.

Finally, I’d say J HK is my favorite AA/jump in cross up, not to mention the amount of hitstun it applies. Yay for oil!

A few more beginner points…

  1. Vary your knockdown follow ups. Hakan has a lot of options for keeping an opponent down, and you don’t want to rely on just one, because a large majority of his options aren’t safe and will get you punished if you guess wrong. Just some of my favorites are a shallow J.MK into a tick throw, standing next to a downed opponent only to jump backwards, baiting an SRK move, standing next to them and using S.HP as their wakeup frames kick in (does multiple hits and can be used as a pseudo-crossup if it hits when you follow up with a LP slide), and finally, activating U2 next to a wakeup attack happy opponent (which, this trick usually only works on an opponent once, and sometimes you’ll activate it only to fall to the ground like an idiot, leaving you open to a hit, but sometimes it’s worth the risk).

  2. Practice using his punch command throw in different situations. It’s only recently that I’ve begun to work it into my toolset as a wake-up followup and a counter/punish. The EX version of this move beats out a large majority of attacks, so learn when and how to use it.

  3. Don’t underestimate the power of the slide, but don’t use it as a catch all. The slide is the unique feature about Hakan, and is something that a lot of players will either spend the match trying to figure out, or spend the match defending against constantly. You can use both situations to your advantage. Get familiar to the lengths across the screen Hakan will slide, depending on which punch button you use. Knowing to go short when an opponent may be expecting you to try and connect with a slide can mean the difference between a win and loss.

  4. Don’t taunt. Hakan wouldn’t, why should you?

BTW Swoops, your Kirbkan avatar makes me insanely happy.

My tips to beginners:

#1. Learn all types of slides, knowing their ranges. For example, learn both dry EX slide and oily EX slide. Very different moves, one with only one range, the other with variable range. Know that not pressing the follow up punch or kick increases the speed at which you recover, enabling safe slide setups, e.g. slide/press dash forward and hp slide. Don’t do random slides as your offense, though.
#2. Learn to oily focus attack, dash-normal-cancel. Oily focus attack is unique in that it slides forward and back, if you press in that direction. Furthermore, when you dash while oily, you can interrupt your dash with a normal attack. So this is a combo: sliding focus attack, dash,
#3. After you’ve mastered normals, master a couple of oil dive set ups against waking opponents (wake-up dives don’t work against Dhalsim, Blanka, Honda, Yun, Yang nor Cammy). Understand the best range to use them, as if you get the right range and timing, you can beat all jumps, crouches and many reversals. (See the SS Dive compendium)

Excellent idea for a thread…

  1. On your wake up, if your opponent is standing next to you, you can often do a wake up 360 throw… however, lots of people know that’s coming and will jump in the air to evade it. If I don’t know anything about my opponent, I will often try for the 360 throw to see if they jump to avoid it. If they do, next time I jump up in the air with them for a mid-air throw.

  2. The jumping medium/light kick sets up a nice position where your opponent will either block or take the hit. Either situation is fine. If they block, and you space it right, you can throw them immediately after. If they don’t block it, you can follow it up with a normal. You can also combo the hit into a throw, although off-hand, I can’t remember if it’s light or medium kick that combos into a throw. I believe it’s light but don’t quote me on that. Just watch out for SRK’s,

  3. Oiled sliding focus attack can be a great anti-air because if your opponent is in the air, you can start to slide backwards, which throws off your opponent’s spacing (along with protecting yourself from overheads). What’s even nice is that the focus attack will absorb any normal jumping attacks, which point you can let go of the focus attack for a counter hit. Also, if your opponent is a far distance from you, use an oiled sliding focus attack to safely move forward. From there, you can FADC into a few dashes and quickly gain ground on your opponent before they realize it. They’ll be so used to you moving slowly when using focus attack that they won’t really expect Hakan’s dashing speed.

Overall, the best advice I think I could give to someone new to Hakan is to realize that Hakan is about psychology and mind games. I often spend the first round just trying to figure out my opponent’s style, My ideal is to play aggressively when oiled so that I can control my opponent, however, often times you have to play slightly defensively so that you can punish your opponent’s mistakes… and THEN you can control them.

On #2 that would be a medium kick and not light. =)

  1. Towards LP command normal is godlike vs the twins.
  2. In the theme of a few posts above, learn your AA options is huge. Hakan doesn’t have a DP or Lariat like Hawk and Gief so learn what you can do to get them out of the air.
  3. Don’t become too reliant on slide as a wake up or movement tool, learn to play the slower game from time to time to move in on people who want to turtle you.

Yup! Just logged in to confirm that after testing it in the training room, and it is light kick.

  1. Learn dry’kan. I know some one said it before, but that’s how important this is. You have to know how to play dry’kan first before you use oil’kan.
  2. Death by normals. learn your pokes, ticks and punish normals. Hakan has some of the best normals in the game. I can not tell you how many times I kO’ed an opponent with just normals.
  3. spacing. Knowing thy spacing. This is what seperates a mediocre Hakan player to a great one. Wanna open up a turtler, whiff F+MP / F+HK into U1 or oil Rocket? Annoying Dive kickers or Jumpers? F+LP, N. jump throw, etc. Knowing the spacing with Hakan is what seperates the W’s or L’s in your favor.

It’s true of every character, but especially true for Hakan. Without knowing proper spacing, you can’t play the Hakan mind games properly.

Gotta agree there. If your opponent gives you the time and space to slap them to death with his normals, they deserve the punishment. Hakan can easy initiate a dizzystate with just 3-4 normals connecting, and with his ambiguous size and jumping arch, you can use his normals as cross-ups in and of themselves (my favorite being standing HP on top of an opponent then low sliding).

Spacing has become more problematic with Yun and Yang, as I find myself unable to generator space after being knocked down, and of course getting caught in a flurry of normals from the stupid-hat wearing twins. While we are on the subject, anyone have any suitable Hakan methods for getting out of what seems to be a constant loop of rushing? Backdashing (oiled or not) doesn’t work, and using F+LP seems to only work about 30 percent of the time. I guess the biggest advice would be to not let yourself get knocked down, but frankly with all the tools and advantages the twins have that is easier said than done.

Bottom line? I hate the twins. It’s a shame the trade-off for awesome Hakan buffs were the introduction of two characters used more online than Ken and Ryu combined in Super.

At this point I’m just bitching. There’s only so many Twins losses I can take before I throw my dual shock (which, for the first time in about 13 years I’ve broken a game console controller by throwing it.) ;/

I like your segue there EyePawd :p.

First, you have all the tools to deal with the twins, don’t be too intimitated by them. Yun can’t really continue much pressure if he doesn’t get into the air to divekick. If he wants to continue pressure on the ground, he’ll need to burn meter. His shoulder is safe, put pushes you a fair amount back, just enough to get into your normal sweet spot. If you see him end in a shoulder, know the range of his pokes and try to throw in a poke to keep him from getting back in. Know where Yun can land his dive kicks, as any one blocked about shoulder level is a free SPD. If he’s aiming for your feet, it probably means there’s something that can effectively poke him out of it. s.:hp: is great for further dive kicks, but it’s slow, and can be risky with any closer. Jabs do work pretty well for up close vertical divekicks, and :mp: and c.:mp: work well for mid-far dive kicks.

Lunge punishes can be punished with an SPD but it’s not always guaranteed. An occasional f.:hp: or slide can put the hurt on them though. EX Lunge is just a move you have to be scared of, but if he’s using EX punch then he’s not using his meter for anything else is he :)?

I think the problem I’ve been having has been using SPDs. I’ve gotten by with my Hakan without use of it, and I’ve now gotten to the point where I’ve finally been able to initiate it into my game. How quickly and at what point in or after the block does the SPD need to happen? I guess some training mode work will be in order.

Regardless, my biggest trouble has been getting Twins off me once they get onto me. I think I’ll fair better once I see some video of it, but as of right now I’m still struggling, which is annoying because if not for being 40% against Twins online, I’d probably be B Ranked by now. :\

Yo, check it! You wanna be da best Hakan player? Of course you do! Who needs all these fancy pants frame trips and option-insurrections to be numbah one? All you need is some brains and premium grade cooking oil! Now sit down, shaddup, and pay attention kids, ‘cause I’m only sayin’ this once!

  1. Anticipating a block for your slide? 'Tis all good, my friend! If you have two super bars stocked, it may be wise to FADC on impact, and go for a free Oil Rocket and punish these suckas! Hell, the basic concept to pay attention here is that you can FADC your slide. What you decide to do from there is up to you; back dash, throw, ultra, it’s all a matter of circumstance. Remember to not just throw out the slide because you can FADC. You have to predict it well, or set yourself up. I’ll even go so far to say that FADC’ing in the middle of a poke string (blocked mainly) is vital.

Teacher’s Caution!: Slide FADC is only effective if it’s on block. Slide scores a knock down, which will most likely render your FADC useless (unless you want the mix-up) with the sacrifice of two bars.

  1. Create opportunities by oiling up. With the correct spacing, oiling may appear passive, but can bait your opponent out into a desirable situation. Your opponent no longer falling pray to your meaties? A slick lk.oil can throw them off on wake up for a good Oil Rocket opportunity (yes, as soon as they wake up) . If you have a feeling they’re itching for a wake up srk, do the oil up to bait it out, and block. Punish to your heart’s content! Remember, oiling can be taken out of its context as a buff, and used strategically to create opportunities.

Teacher’s Caution!: Do not, I repeat, do not just oil up all willy-nilly. A mis-timed oil can get you hit for free, especially by projectiles. Look for poke or projectile patterns to exploit with your oiling. FOR FREE, DAMN YOU!!!

  1. Coward’s Crouch is your best friend, and perhaps your most useful tool. It is invulnerable (if timed correctly) to most uppercuts like srks and flash kicks. It’s usefulness doesn’t stop there. You can create baiting opportunities by coward crouching out of your Oil Dive. Remember what I said about exploiting patterns? Doing so here can also give you the edge to build meter while you bait your opponent (sneaky, sneaky). After scoring a close knockdown with a hp.Oil Rocket, body press, or air grab, you can create a mix-up with Oil Dive x coward’s crouch, and then whatever you want on wake up (I prefer sweep, Oil Rocket, ultra I/II, when I first use this tactic). Again, I can’t stress enough that these are all not set in stone. You must use them appropriately. Don’t just perform this mix-up because it is a mix-up. It’s a risky one, so it’s probably best to bring it out mid first round, or later rounds, to keep them on their toes from your standard mix-ups. If you have a considerable life lead, playing very aggressive, or shutting down your opponent with good reads, then it can be good to bring it out sooner than later. The basic concept here is that Coward’s Crouch is essential in your arsenal, and you should get used to using it in a variety of ways!

Teacher’s Caution!: Don’t abuse the crouch! It can be punished by certain moves, and MOST (but not all) ultras and supers. I’m not sure if Dictator’s scissor kick hits it, but I think really low attacks like sweeps hit you. To be honest, spend some good time in the lab and figure EVERYTHING out. Be smart, be careful.

“But Mr. Cheetobrows, these are just far too advanced for us,” is what you are probably crying right about now. Well, I didn’t want you to take notes for nothing! The more essential things aren’t quick fixes, but the tools that take effort in learning and retaining because they aren’t superficial. By that I mean that non-Hakan players won’t expect them because they’re not directly on the surface, which means they are harder to be read, exploited, and countered. Don’t give your opponent what they’re looking for. These, and most of the other tips in this thread, can be deviated and improved as your career progresses, and being DYNAMIC is more important than decisive moves and tricks. Stay hungry; *grow *and never settle. Word.

I’ve said all along that the biggest advantage one can have is that not a lot of people (even a year after release) know Hakan’s match up. I would also suggest checking out that extremely handy matchup guide made byChron here as a great source of figuring out what does what and when you can hit it.

That is correct, EyePawd. Also, beginner Hakans, be sure to discretion these tips according to your match up. Depending on who your opponent is, some things stuff or whiff (for either player), and some match ups create instances unique only to that match up (for either player; think Claw).

Quick Tip:

I’m pretty sure most of us ran into a situation like this. We’re controlling the match and the opponent just shuts down, or the opponent figures you out and shuts down. Don’t fall for this! You have to learn to play a waiting game, but don’t fall asleep. You have to know how to keep pressure from a distance. This can be achieved with *crucial *spacing, accurate reading, and turning the tides by cunning advances and retreats so the opponent doesn’t control the match by becoming a tower. In most cases, if the hit is guaranteed, full screen slides are okay, but risky. In situations when the opponent shuts down and becomes a tower, it will be your demise. Unless the hit is absolutely guaranteed, do not full screen slide. When the opponent shuts down, this is a prophylactic maneuver. This means that there is nothing, NOTHING, going on action-wise. There are no active mind-games (other than causing the Hakan distress), zoning, footsies, or any other threats. This is because there is little to no commit from the opponent. In a sense, you are in zugzwang, which is why creating pressure from a distance with proper spacing, accurate reads, and retreats is important here because it’s better to fortify your position than it is to create mutual zugzwang. Applying this pressure, you have more options queued for your disposal; you have more committed at the ready, where the other opponent has to get out of their tower and begin placing their pieces again. You’re steps ahead, basically. But you have to keep the spacing, because all the options you have face-to-face can be matched or reciprocated by your opponent.

A bit vague, I know, but seriously, we have to get these critical occurrences out into scrutiny. We have to be aware and prepared to deal with adversity. I fall victim to many losses from not following the above tip because I’m a very aggressive Hakan (you should see my dive kicking Sim). I’ve been a Ken player since SFII, and always preferred rushdown. I never played a grappler in my life, so there was a lot I had to get accustomed to. So don’t think you’re the only one who has to work to get better at this. I’m right there with you. Okay, no more tears. Go and make papa proud!