Posted by: Leek | April 22, 2014

Memetaa TV Episode 8: Jojo: ASB – Knockdowns, Taunts, and Taunt Combos

We’ve reached the end of basic, necessary tutorials and the info today is probably more on the advanced side than basic. But it’s still good information to get into your head before you get playing ASB too seriously. Just like any other fighter, what you do after you knock an opponent down is essential. All the info here is to help you construct not only what you should do but what to look out for when you’re knocked down.

“Okizeme” and Standard Setups
If you’re familiar with fighting games there’s a chance you’ve come across the term okizeme before. If you haven’t it doesn’t really matter because we’re not here to talk about the definition of it too much. Okizeme is generally just used to refer to what actions you take after you knock an opponent down. Remember there are two types of knockdown in ASB (hard/untechable and soft/techable) that you should worry about. There’s really no reason to not tech a soft knockdown so remember if you’re getting juggled to be ready to press Axis Shift + a direction to ensure you get a tech roll just in case your opponent screws up. In the case you or your opponent gets a hard knockdown, the following tactics will come into play. Just like any game, okizeme is a scary thing and ASB has 3 types of actions you can take when your opponent is downed. But let’s start with the basics.

Just like any normal fighter, the standard ideas of okizeme remain in play. And since a lot of characters lack any great moves to use on wakeup, it can leave you pretty free to make opponents miserable after you knock them down. The primary tool all characters have is using your best jumping attack and performing it as low to the ground as possible or so that you can potentially cross your opponent up as they wake up. This will often force your opponent to guess which way to block as they get up or simply leave them in a situation where they have no choice but to block your jump-in and any following attacks you perform after it. Just be aware that opponents will always have the option to Stylish Move or, if they have one, use an armored move or move with invincible frames to try and snipe you out of the air.

In these cases, it might be best to look into your character’s arsenal. If you play a character such as Kira, Kakyoin, or Hol Horse for example you have more options then simple jump-ins. These usually come in the form of various traps and projectiles you can throw out for your opponent to wake up into. Let’s take Hol Horse for example. If you haven’t already set it you can use Hol Horse’s 214+L and, assuming you’re standing next to an opponent, this will result in you setting a puddle on the ground from where you can summon Hanged Man. Your opponent has no choice but to behave a bit as Hol Horse with a puddle in his proximity is generally at full advantage over his opponent. So you can use this opportunity to lay as much pressure on your opponent as possible until either the puddle dries up or you choose to called Hanged Man. These characters all possess moves that are slow to start up and a knockdown gives you a good amount of time to setup and still have a slight frame advantage over your opponent. Of course, if you’re willing to spend gauge you can also experiment and force your opponent to wake up into projectiles as you perform a mixup or jump-in at the same time. Find your character’s tools and see what you can come up with.

Down Attacks
Now outside of standard okizeme, ASB also gives various characters to hit opponents even if you knock them down. In fact, certain attacks in character arsenals can only be utilized while your opponent is down. Now if you use your imagination you can probably figure out what down attacks will do. They give you the ability to hit an opponent even while they’re down and you get some additional damage for your trouble. But there are a few things you need to remember.

First of all, you want to pay attention to what type of attack your down attack falls under. Characters like Kira have a command move that can hit downed opponents and thus give you the options to cancel it into various attacks after connecting. This means you can still choose to try and set something up on your opponent. However there are also characters like DIO and Wham that get their down attacks in the form of command specials. This means that they can’t be cancelled into anything particular and you will generally have to sacrifice any advantage over your downed opponent. This is the case with most down attacks as, after you perform them, you will generally reset the situation to neutral and your opponent won’t suffer from any real pressure on wakeup. However it gives you guaranteed damage and it’s best to look at most down attacks as the ender of your combo.

There are even characters such as Hol Horse and Joseph that have GHAs that will hit enemies on the ground and Iggy has a HHA that will hit grounded opponents. These give you chances to do big damage off of hard knockdowns and give you a lot more options with how you can use your gauge within combos. Just remember like any down attack that you’ll most likely sacrifice another oki situation and reset the game back to neutral. A small price to pay for damage though, especially if it nets you the finishing blow.

Now if you haven’t seen any footage of ASB, you may wonder why taunts get their own section in this discussion. Unlike most games, taunts take a special form when used on downed opponents in ASB. If you perform a taunt normally you’ll realize it acts just like any other game. However, if you knock an opponent down and taunt you’ll realize the game will stop shortly and focus on the taunting character. After the game zooms back out you’ll realize the downed character is now standing and a very small amount of the HHA gauge (around 15% of one bar) will be shaved off the taunted opponent. So does the small amount of gauge really merit this as an option?

For one case let’s look at one of the zoning characters. Now if you are managing to keep your opponent a healthy distance away from you with projectiles and are even getting knockdowns, you might find yourself at a loss for what to do. There’s obviously no reason for you to run all the way across the screen to make it easier on your opponent and you may not need any extra distance between the two of you. There also might be a case where you blow an opponent a far distance away and have no real projectiles to throw out. In these situations it won’t hurt you to taunt and take off a small amount of your opponent’s meter. It isn’t a lot but if you’re really scoring these kinds of knockdowns often then that’s all the more times you could have taken meter away. It’s simply an extra option to remember but what many have grown fond of is the following.

Characters that like being in an opponent’s face have plenty of okizeme options but you shouldn’t limit yourself to the same routine everytime. This is the kind of scenario where you can use the wake up property of taunts to your advantage. Now after you taunt your opponent you’ll notice you get a small amount of frame advantage where your opponent cannot act (though they do have invincibility frames during this time). During this time, assuming you taunted standing next to them, you can choose from any of your attack types to force your opponent to block. This means you can go for a quick low, throw them, or catch them blocking low with an overhead. In other words, it doesn’t vary much from standard okizeme but can force an opponent to act alongside your pace. If you’re fighting an opponent with armor moves or invincible moves this can give you the minor advantage so you can attempt to bait them into using them without risking using a jump-in. In general, if you mix waking up opponents with taunts alongside standard okizeme it can force your opponent to think more and more about what to expect next. And, as a plus, you’ll be knocking off a little of your opponent’s gauge at the same time.

Taunt Combos
The last subject of today will cover the basic idea of taunt combos. Taunt combos were a bug found in the early stages of ASB that were eventually turned into a “semi” official mechanic later on. Semi-official in the sense that the staff decided not to remove them entirely but instead limit the amount that they could be used within the game. However, you won’t be finding any information about them in any official notes.

From the name, taunt combos may be a little hard to fathom but the basic idea is that you are using the re-stand properties of down taunts to continue combos. For example, Jonathon can do a combo into his HHA. After this hits it forces an opponent down. Jonathon can then do 236+S (EX Hamon Wave) and as it reaches the opponent do a taunt while they’re still down. This effectively forces the opponent to stand just as the EX Hamon Wave makes contact and will then launch them back into the air where Jonathon can use his HHA once more. This is one of the many taunt combos in the game and gives you a general idea of what is going on.

If your character has a projectile, there is a high probability you can do a taunt combo of some type. Now these will range from full combos, to minor extensions, to almost minuscule extra damage that isn’t worth it. But for the characters that can use them for longer combos, it will become a good tool to put into your arsenal so that you can get extra damage off of moves that knock down. This is especially valuable for characters that can convert a throw into a taunt combo. While combos after throws do suffer from heavy scaling, it can turn a end game throw into the deciding factor of your victory.

So what’s the catch? Taunt combos have been limited so you can only really use them once per round. So say you are a Jonathon player and try to convert his HHA into another HHA via a taunt combo. If you happen to miss the second HHA, just remember that you missed your only shot at using that combo for the round. Once you successfully manage to use a taunt combo (even if it was just one hit afterwards) you don’t get another chance until you enter the next round. Any other attempts will result in your opponent standing up with extra invincible frames where whatever projectile you set out will whiff entirely. The good part is as long as you don’t get the extra hit as an opponent stands (aka successfully start a taunt combo) you can try as many times until it works. In the case you just want to taunt to re-stand your opponent normally you are also free to do so and you can save your taunt combo until you have the necessary gauge to perform the combo you want. So if your character has a good taunt combo remember to keep it in your back pocket and pull it out when you want that extra damage.

Like all fighters, okizeme will always be a great thing as long as you’re on the giving end. Depending on the character you choose to play in ASB, you’ll find a number of options of what you can do as your opponent tries to wake up. Just make sure to take into account what you can do as you’re waking up and what your opponent can do when they’re waking up. The more you know, the more setups you can form to deal with various situations and characters. The stronger you make your okizeme game (both in an offensive and defensive sense) the more confident you can feel on both the giving and receiving ends.


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