Okizeme

After a knockdown, the attacker has significant frame advantage over the defender. What the attacker does after a knockdown is called okizeme and what the defender does after a knockdown is called wakeup. I like to think of okizeme as rushdown on the floor.

Setplay is a choreographed flowchart of actions performed to create a setup. Setplay is very common after knockdowns. Vortex is a playstyle involving a mixup after a knockdown that ends in another knockdown which leads to another mixup that ends in another knockdown. It's a loop.

There are hard knockdowns and soft knockdowns. The defender can input a specific command during a soft knockdown to wakeup sooner. This is called quick recovery. It's also called quick rise, tech, or ukemi. All knockdowns are assumed to be soft knockdowns unless specified otherwise.

The defender should always quick recover if it prevents the attacker from getting pressure after the knockdown.

In 2D fighting games, the defender is invincible until they've fully recovered from the knockdown. In 3D fighting games, the defender is vulnerable but has more ways to recover and can delay their wakeup considerably if not indefinitely. Getting hit before fully recovering from a knockdown is called OTG. OTG can stand for either On-The-Ground or Off-The-Ground. I say On-The-Ground because that's the original term. Getting hit OTG during quick recovery is called an ukemi trap or tech trap.

A meaty, also called a force block in 3D games, is an attack timed to connect when the defender is vulnerable after recovering from a knockdown. A perfect meaty is a meaty that connects the first frame the defender is vulnerable. A meaty is like a frame trap on a character waking up. Meaties are not guaranteed to hit as they can be blocked but they will interrupt the defender if they wakeup attack. Meaty with whatever you have that's available. Not every knockdown will leave you close enough to your opponent or with enough frame advantage to guarantee a meaty.

Meaty also has another definition. Meaty can also refer to an attack that hits on its later active frames. The defender spends the same amount of time in hitstun/blockstun after taking an attack. The attacker recovers sooner when the later active frames of an attack connect and gets more frame advantage.

These two meanings overlap because it's common to start an attack early while the defender is invincible as they're waking up so that the first active frames whiff but the later active frames connect.

Let's look at the okizeme vs wakeup battle between two players. After a knockdown, the attacker gets a guaranteed perfect meaty even after the defender quick recovers.

The safest option for the defender is to simply block the perfect meaty. If the attacker has conditioned the defender to wakeup blocking, they can use this opportunity to attempt a mixup or rushdown.

If the defender predicts the attacker will perform anything other than a guaranteed meaty, they can wakeup jab to interrupt it. But if the attacker does perform a perfect meaty, the defender will get interrupted.

The defender does not have to quick recover after every knockdown. The defender will not quick recover to stay on the floor longer to make the attacker's meaty whiff. The attacker begins to use a slower or delayed attack to meaty the slower wakeup.

Once the attacker begins using a slower or delayed attack to meaty, the defender can quick recover and wakeup jab to interrupt it.

If the defender has an invincible attack they can perform it on wakeup to beat all meaties. The attacker may block instead of attacking with a meaty to defend against it. When the attacker blocks instead of attacking, the defender can wakeup jab to take their turn.

The biggest advantage the attacker has in the okizeme/wakeup game is they can move while the defender cannot. The attacker can position themselves at a range to make the defender's wakeup attacks whiff while still being in range to meaty.

Wakeup Fuzzy Mash Exercise

Fuzzy mash jab can be performed on wakeup. Block for a few frames on wakeup to block perfect meaties then mash jab when you would be locked in blockstun. If the meaty was perfect it will be blocked and mash jab doesn't come out. If the attacker does anything else, mash jab comes out.

Training mode time. Pick any character for Player 1 and Ryu for Player 2.
Go to Action Recording Settings and record this:
Recording Slot 1: Dash, dash, MP Dragon Punch (forward, down, down-forward medium punch), dash, crouching medium kick.
Recording Slot 2: Dash, dash, MP Dragon Punch (forward, down, down-forward medium punch), dash, forward medium punch.

Crouching medium kick is a guaranteed perfect meaty while forward medium punch is much slower and not guaranteed. Forward medium punch is an overhead that Ryu players love to end rounds with.

For this exercise let Ryu knock you down, quick recover by pressing the down direction or two punches, crouch block on wakeup, then mash jab when you would be locked in blockstun. If you're doing this correctly you will block the meaty and interrupt Ryu's overhead punch every time.

Delayed Meaty

Wakeup fuzzy mash beats perfect meaties but loses to delayed or slower meaties. I don't have an exact number for how long you should delay your meaty because it depends on your opponent's tendencies. Most players probably block for 1 to 5 frames on wakeup before fuzzy mashing.

If the defender has an invincible reversal, the attacker can delay their meaty to block it. Birdie tries to meaty Kage but gets hit by his DP.

Kage's DP hits on the 3rd frame. Birdie can block for 3 frames then start up his meaty.

Birdie's meaty hits on the 4th frame. Birdie blocks for 3 frames then performs his meaty which means it hits 7 frames after Kage's wakeup. Kage can beat the delayed meaty by waking up with an attack that hits on the 6th frame. Or by blocking for 1 frame to block perfect meaties then using an attack that hits on the 5th frame.

Armor

Armor is a property that allows a character to get hit without entering hitstun. Instead of being interrupted, the character absorbs the hit with armor and continues their attack.

Armored attacks have more drawbacks than invincible attacks but armored attacks tend to be safer on block and whiff. In most fighting games, attacks rarely have armor properties on frame 1 of startup (Street Fighter 6 is an obvious exception). Armor loses to throws and multi-hitting attacks. Attacks that are specifically flagged to beat armor are called armor breaking.

Armor adds another layer to the okizeme/wakeup game. The attacker can use armored attacks to absorb immediate wakeup jab and interrupt delayed or fuzzy mash wakeup jab.

The defender can wakeup with an armored attack to absorb delayed meaties. Remember armored attacks are rarely armored on frame 1 and will lose to perfect meaties.

Think of okizeme like rushdown on the floor. Don't get too obsessed with frame perfect meaties and frame perfect wakeup attacks. Remember your opponent is human.

There are two quotes you need to live by in fighting games:
“Any attack can be plus on block if your opponent is scared.”

“Hesitation is the best type of frame advantage.”

What's Chun Li's favorite thing to order at a restaurant? A combo.