This is the 3rd part in a 3-part series on offensive pressure in the Street Fighter 4 series. If you’re reading this, you made it to the last bit! Just a little more. If you haven’t taken a look at the first two part. Please do via the links above! This is the final part of the series and should hopefully put together everything we’ve talked about this far.
Wait a damn minute, In part 2 we only really talked about moves like crouching light kick or crouching light punch. What happened to all that pressure routes stuff from before. So take a look below and you’ll see where all of this comes into play via a very simple graphic.
At the top of each part you’ll see the label for each pressure route, with the inputs below. At this point you might be thinking, “But these inputs are pretty easy to remember in a match. It’s just a few more inputs for certain situations.” For a moment, I need you to conceptualize past this basic premise. In a high level match, defensive options get a lot more complicated with focuses, backdashes, red focuses, etc. This illustration perhaps does too good of a job simplifying your options of offensive pressure. Imagine in a match where your opponent is performing more advanced defensive options, instead of trying to figure out what moves to string together to beat each of their options on the fly, you can just flip through your consolidated mental rolodex of options and say “Ok, I need to beat a throw tech and a reversal. I can use the appropriate routes to do that.”
When you break down each of your options into these kinds of pressure routes based on what they beat, you react with what your opponent is doing on the screen with what beats it, rather than translating your entire moveset into what options each move provides, then choosing from that list.
If you’re scratching your head, please reread that one more time slowly. When you break things down into pressure routes, you do all the translating of your moveset beforehand into the bare essentials, so you can react and change on the fly. So think about what your own character can do, and see if you can find some pressure routes that are useful. Start with the basics, and if you come across something you don’t know how to beat in a real match, later, go back and test what option does beat it. In the end this will make you a more adaptive and overall smarter player.