I currently main Ryu, but I’m thinking about learning a charge character to be my alternative character.
I’ve never really played charge characters before because I never got used to holding a certain direction for 2 seconds before doing the move. That always seemed kind of clunky and slow to me.
I was hoping someone could help me and tell me what kind of philosophy I should have or how I should change my mental approach to sf4 when going from a fireball motion character to a charge character.
Do you guys think playing charge characters takes more skill than using other characters?
Playing charge characters is more restrictive. You don’t have every option avaiable to you if you don’t have a charge. So the name of the game is keel charge but still hold your ground. While normals are important for every character, they are insanely important for charge characters. You also want to always be in position to always keep your charge, so you want avoid crossups. With that said most charge characters are better at turtling because they lose their options when they walk forward.
If you can charge as quick as possible, the charge time is only something like 1.2 seconds, but only if you have quick hands. You’ll have to experiment to see how quickly you can charge.
Anyways, charge characters play somewhat different than ‘command’ characters that can execute any special whenever they want (ie Ryu, Ken, Akuma, Seth, etc etc). Generally they’re given stronger normal moves to compensate for this, as well as powerful special moves, to make up for this need to charge.
The key to playing charge characters is knowing how to “hide” your charge. For example, whenever you jump in at an opponent, you always hold down-back as soon as you jump, that way by the time you land, you have charge ready to go. The reason you hold down-back is so that you can charge both back AND down charges, to do whatever special move you want. Another example is Guile’s bazooka knee (b+lk), Guile uses this primarily to move forward on an opponent while charging his sonic boom. Same thing can be done with his b+RH, both moves move him forward while maintaining a back charge.
Of course it’s not as simple as just holding down-back the entire game and throwing out sonic booms. You also have to balance out your need to stay mobile. Sometimes you have to sacrifice your charge by walking forward or jumping, in order to get better positioning. For example, at close range, if Guile matches Ryu’s fireball with a sonic boom, he should have time to walk up and do a backfist. Now, obviously he’ll lose his charge, but he does it so that he can land damage against Ryu. Same principle applies to Bison whenever he plays the footsies game. He often has to lose his back charge for scissor kick in order to walk up and threaten the opponent with st.RH, st.mk, and cross-up attacks.
And it takes a lot of skill to play, but I wouldn’t say anymore skill than it does to play any other character. It just feels REALLY unusual to play a charge character in the beginning, but you get used to it after awhile. It’s like driving a stick shift car, once you learn the basics, you never truly forget.