Welcome back to my little blog series about Fighting games. Today we will talk about Okizeme (japanese for Wakeup-Offense). The concept of Okizeme centers around one idea: So you managed to knock down your opponent but what are you going to do as soon as he gets up from the ground?
The focus of Okizeme or short Oki is to take advantage of your downed opponent to apply further pressure. This is where the mindgames begin. Let's take a look at the options and tools of offense and defense.
Let's look at the attacker: You can do a meaty (a move with a lot of actice frames) to attack the opponent immediately as he gets up. You can do a command grab and if you play for example Zangief or R. Mika you might have enough frame advantage after the knockdown to make the opponent guess what to do. You can also mix overheads, crossups and regular throws into the wakeup-game.
The defender also has several options after the knockdown: First of all you can block the meaty attack and return to the neutral game. But if the other player has a command grab in his repertoire and uses it instead you'll get grabbed. Backdash beats command grabs but you will get hit by a meaty attack. If you have a Dragon Punch (DP, for example: Shoryuken as Ryu or Ken) you can risk it all and wakeup-dp. You can also do the ultimate desperation move: Wakeup-super. Because super attacks are often times invincible on startup you beat the attack of the opponent but if he blocks it you are done, because after a blocked super your character has an enormous frame disadvantage and will get punished.
Basically: Okizeme is a mindgame in itself. After every knockdown you have to think about what your opponent's options are and how to beat them. Proplayer Daigo Umehara said that the best Okizeme comes from a player whose habits I can't predict. That's what is important about Oki: Watch the habits of your opponent after he knocks you down and then beat it.
The creator of many tutorials, guides and character overviews Bafael made this little graphic for SF III: Third Strike's okizeme. I hope it helps to understand the concept of it:
That's all for today's lesson. Fight on! (If you have any questions about this you can leave them in the comments)