FGC FUNdamentals - Terminology
July 31 2018
What’s the oki? He goes for the meaty! Player 2 woke-up buttons, this dude is looking pringles! The commentators and crowd go wild! Feeling a little lost? You're not alone. If you’ve never delved deep into fighting games much of the lingo during a big tournament might be lost on you. Commentators shouting about ‘oki’, ‘meaties’, or ‘pringles’ and you’re left scratching your head as to what the heck just happened? Well, we’re here to help you out!
The FGC is full of wild moments and colorful commentary and if you aren’t familiar you might be missing out on some really cool moments. All esports have their own lingo and descriptive language (waow) but the FGC has some of the most creative. With EVO just around the corner, here’s a breakdown of some of our favorites!
In fighting games that allow blocking in the air, chicken blocking is when a player will purposefully jump to block an incoming attack in the air rather than on the ground for a few reasons but most importantly to avoid any high/low mixups. There is only one direction to block in the air and this eliminates any sort of guesswork by the defending player. They’re ‘chickening out’ by removing the attacking players options.
Okizemi is a Japanese term that means ‘waking attack’ and is one of the fundamental mind games across most every fighting game. Getting knocked down is no fun and it puts you into a psychological mixup with your opponent. Okizemi or ‘Oki’ for short, refers to a player attacking you as you get off the ground, also know as your ‘wake-up’. One of the best oki tools is the always feared ‘Meaty’.
A meaty attack is when the opponent attacks you on your wake-up so that their attack hits on the first active frame of your wake-up. This means if you try to wake-up pressing buttons, you’re going to be in trouble as their attack will be active first thus leading to a big damage combo and likely another knock down!
Meaty setups can be frame perfect which allows players to access custom meaty combos not normally available because they will hit your wake-up on a specific frame of their attack. No, that’s not an exaggeration. Fighting games run at 60 frames per second and players find frame perfect (1 frame window) combos and meaty setups. Yes, fighting games get that precise and if you’re like us, you feel superhuman when you stop the microwave with 0:01 second left which is a 60 frame window — otherwise known as an eternity in fighting games!
The dance of dances. A simple set of movements that makes the you feel godlike or a total noob depending on which end of the shimmy you’re on. Commonly used in oki situations, it can also be utilized in a neutral position or when you have advantage and are close to your opponent. All a shimmy entails is walking in and out of throw range to ‘bait’ your enemy into ‘teching’ or ‘breaking’ the throw attempt they think is coming. When you walk backward you’re just out of range causing them to reach for the air and whiff a throw, which you then punish for big damage!
Fighting games often put you in uncomfortable positions that you may not be able to get out of with your physical skill, but rather 'Yomi' (knowing the mind of your opponent). Or to put it less elegantly, you roll the dice and guess! A mix-up is when the opponent puts you in a state that you have to either react quickly or in some cases make a blind guess as to what is coming next and how you should block. Setups that lead to ambiguous mix-ups are usually resets during or after combos that force to you guess left/right or high/low. Try your best to avoid getting put in the blender and getting mixed!
Bread and Butter
Now that we got some meat(y), how about some Bread and Butter or BNB. This term refers to a characters most basic, effective and reliable combos. The kind of combo attacks that can be used often and without any risk of not working due to inaccurate spacing or character size. When learning a new character most players will often stick to the BNBs before branching out to more elaborate and optimized combos.
You may often see a pro player lose the first round of a match and wonder how this could happen? Well it’s often said the first round is ‘data’, to study your opponents habits and learn their tendencies. The download is when you have a good read on how your opponent likes to play, you ‘downloaded’ their game plan and have the counter ready. One of the most fun usage of this term came at EVO2016 from the event winner Infiltration.
As with any slang, terms will grow and take on new meaning. Pringles is one of those ever morphing terms. Pringles was popularized by Marvel vs Capcom 2 (Mvc2) EVO Champion and fan favorite commentator IFCYipes referencing the potato chip companies old marketing slogan ‘once you pop the fun don’t stop’ referring to MvC2’s gameplay regarding opening your opponent up, otherwise known as getting a hit when they’re trying to block your offense. However, this term has grown over the years and my personal favorite usage results in describing a player who ‘breaks easily under pressure’.
Now that you've got the basics down, you're ready to dive right into EVO this weekend whether you're a viewer or a player! Just remember: don't get salty, hit your meaties, land your BNBs, and don't be pringles!
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