In a nutshell
Takuma is the Grandmaster of Kyokugen Karate that trained Ryo, Robert, and Yuri that sometimes goes under the guise of Mr. Karate as an antagonist. Although Takuma has a decent projectile though his defense is severely lacking, but he makes up for it by being an offensive Tengu--a bird of prey. The range on most of Takuma's grounded normals is short but he makes up for it with strong jumping attacks and a powerful close game against cornered opponents. Takuma players need to be able to block when being rushed down and play a strong neutral game in order to open up an opponent to go on the offensive and have the chance to land some of his intense combos.
- Jump CD comes out faster.
- Stun value on attacks has been lowered.
- EX Kyokugen Ko'ou (qcf+BD) has faster startup and faster recovery. It still cannot be comboed from a normal or command normal.
- Light Hien Shippukyaku (db~f+B) damage has been reduced from 70 to 50.
- Heavy Ryuuko Ranbu (qcf hcb+C) has faster startup. It's still slower than the light version, but it has invincibility until after it becomes active.
- Removed a bug where, upon hitting Takuma with an overhead attack that caused a hard knockdown, hitting him again on the 1st frame possible would cause the combo counter to accumulate. He could block low on this frame, but he would be completely vulnerable to overhead attacks.
- Standing Light Punch () - A stubby standing jab. The player can use this as an anti-air against short hops like any Standing . And although the range is short, Takuma's Standing will hit crouching opponents and can be applied when up close to the opponent.
- Standing Light Kick () - A short shin kick that hits low but lacks range. Takuma can cancel his Crouching that reaches just about as far and leaves the player with a better frame advantage so there isn't much use for this attack.
- Standing Heavy Punch () - One of Takuma's longest grounded normals that behaves similarly to other Far attacks. Takuma's punch connects against crouching opponents and can be canceled into only Special attacks, namely his Ko'ouken ( + ) and Kyokugen Ko'ou ( + ). The horizontal range isn't too long, but it stretched notably further than Standing as Takuma shifts forward before throwing the punch.
- Controls the low hop space in front of the player and can be a preventive anti-air. Since it shuts down hop attempts and can be canceled the player can incorporate the attack into close blockstrings to limit the opponent's options.
- Close Heavy Punch (Close ) - Takuma lacks a Close so this attack functions as Takuma's main fast, heavy punishing normal. It has the fastest startup of all of Takuma's normal attacks and can be incorporated into blockstrings such as the near universal Crouching , Close uninterruptable string.
- Standing Heavy Kick () - An uncancelable upward kick that covers the vertical space in front of Takuma's head but is severely lacking in horizontal reach. The attack can connect against crouching opponents though the range is so short it can't be used reliably as a grounded poke. Instead, this attack functions primarily as an anti-air against hops or jumps and can be used from a run under to attack deep into a jumping opponent.
- Crouching Light Punch ( + ) - Basic cancelable crouching jab that isn't too important as Takuma can chain and cancel his Crouching . The range on both Crouching Light attacks is identical, though Crouching inflicts a slightly longer amount of blockstun.
- Crouching Light Kick ( + ) - One of the more streamlined Crouching attacks as it chains into itself but also can be canceled on its own. From up close the player can chain three hits together though Takuma's Crouching is one of the shorter Crouching Light Kicks in the game. Still functions as a tripguard meaty against sloppy jump ins.
- Crouching Heavy Punch ( + ) - Short elbow-uppercut. Functions as an anti-air though the horizontal reach is lacking and the player should have more success if the attack hits deep into the opponent. Cancels into specials, DMs, and command normals as per most Crouching s.
- Crouching Heavy Kick ( + ) - Cancelable sweep with a moderate range, meaning this is one of Takuma's better grounded pokes. A choice whiff punisher and tripguard anti-air with longer reach than Couching . Safely cancels into Ko'ouken ( + ) and Kyokugen Ko'ou ( + ) on hit or block, though the opponent can Guard Cancel Roll the Crouching to punish a predictable 2-in-1. Unfortunately Takuma's projectiles don't start up fast enough to quickly control the hop space as an anti-air should the opponent hop his sweep.
- Blowback Attack ( + ) - A rather long-reaching step kick. Takuma takes a step forward during the startup and the kick itself has a long horizontal hitbox. The player could space the attack so that Takuma's foot hits an aerial opponent in order to cover an attack angle that no other of Takuma's normals can reach, though the startup length and forward movement of the strike must be taken into account. As a grounded poke the range can be used to surprise an approaching opponent as Takuma's normals are generally terse and should the attack whiff or the opponent jump, the player can always whiff cancel into a special to minimize the chance of being punished. Still, this move is a risky whiff and none of Takuma's specials are quick enough to shut down a hop or counterattack without using meter for an unsafe invulnerable move.
- Jumping Light Punch (Air ) - Simple-looking downward chop with a lot of active frames, especially in comparison to the similar-looking Jumping . On top of having a long active window this attack actually has a larger vertical hitbox that can connect against opponents from higher heights. The amount of hitstun dealt is about the same as Jumping , and overall this attack can work better for air-to-ground approaches that will put both players close together.
- Jumping Light Kick (Air ) - Very short-ranged jumping knee attack. The range of this attack is really short in all directions so there aren't many situations or reasons to use this aerial attack over any other. Even though it can cross up, Jumping does so just as well while serving as a good jumping attack should the opponent block or be hit.
- Jumping Heavy Punch (Air ) - Looks like a standard downward jumping punch though the vertical hitbox is shallow and has to connect somewhat deep to actually hit the opponent. Using this as an air-to-ground attack works, though the reach and active duration is inferior to Jumping . Deals more damage and slightly more hitstun than the aforementioned alternative attack.
- Jumping Heavy Kick (Air ) - This jumping kick resembles Ryu's 'Jumping Forward' kick both visually and in utility. The vertical hitbox stretches further out than Jumping and can be used in spacings where range is needed to avoid whiffing an air-to-ground. Jumping or has a deeper vertical hitbox that will hit an opponent earlier in a jump arc, though Jumping also functions from up close as a standard jump-in, though the opponent can more easily anti-air the attack from below.
- Manages to be an air-to-air attack if the opponent is below Takuma's waist but strong horizonal air-to-airs or anything hitting from above Takuma's waist will beat out this move in the air.
- Works as a solid crossup. Takuma's hop arc is short but he can still manage to hop over most standing characters from a close range and set up a crossup after a blocked Crouching .
- Jumping Blowback Attack (Air + ) - A more horizontally-angled jumping kick. The hitbox reaches more forward than downward though by timing the attack late it can hit crouching opponents. While it can work as both an air-to-air and air-to-ground attack, the active hitbox length is short; using the attack early as an anti-air leaves the player vulnerable to a tripguard punish from a crouching opponent.
- Sokutougeri ( + ) - A typical KOF command normal that works best in combos. Takuma does a step kick that can cancel into specials, DMs, or be used to easily confirm and activate HD mode. This attack isn't too useful alone due to the slow startup and if uncanceled the player is left at a poor frame advantage.
- This only combos from Close/Crouching but once it hits it offers enough hitstun to combo into almost any special or DM.
- The main technique for Takuma players to learn with this move is to input Sokutougeri ( + ) and then immediately move to to charge for Hien Shippuukyaku (Charge , + ). A player must move fast to charge as early as possible and also cancel Sokutougeri very late in order to build enough charge for the special.
- This only combos from Close/Crouching but once it hits it offers enough hitstun to combo into almost any special or DM.
- Ippon Seoinage ( or + or [while close]) - Takuma's throw is one of the better normal grabs since it causes a hard knockdown and keeps the opponent close to the player. After tossing the opponent the player can superjump forward to attack with a safejump or land earlier to go for a throw or low attack. By running forward and jumping it's also possible to set up a crossup Jumping so Takuma really push for an offense after landing his throw.
- Although Takuma's Kyokugen Houken ( + ) isn't instant it's still a threat from an empty hop and at times the player may want to instead do an empty hop into the unwhiffable Ippon Seoinage grab instead. Doing so eliminates the risk of the opponent neutral hopping and punishing the command grab's whiff and should still throw the opponent if they don't tech. Trying to throw with works a little better should the opponent have jumped due to its better anti-air hitbox over Close but sometimes trying to land a throw is preferable in order to keep the opponent cornered.
- Ko'ouken ( + ) - Takuma's token projectile of the Kyokugen namesake. The projectile hitbox is high off the ground and reasonably wide so while attacks that shrink the opponent's hitbox can be used to move underneath a Ko'ouken, any attempt to hop over the projectile will be anti-aired. The recovery of either speed isn't that amazing and lasts until the projectile travels nearly all the way across the screen so the player must take caution to avoid having the opponent superjump forward and punish a predictable Ko'ouken.
- The Ko'ouken travels somewhat fast in comparison to other 'weak' speed projectiles but still manages to control space for a decent amount of time. The startup on this version is quick and it can combo from Light attacks. Because of the better startup and recovery this leaves the player with a better frame advantage for meaty attacks and projectile trap setups.
- Now the version travels across the screen fast. The startup time is lengthier and simply due to the faster speed the player will be at a worse frame advantage on block or hit so knowing when to use the or versions is important to play a stronger neutral game. Mixing up between Ko'oukens can easily defeat projectile reflector attempts, anti-air jumps, and keep the player's advantageous spacing as with any standard fullscreen zoning game.
- Ko'ouken ( + + ) - In a throwback to KOF 2002 Takuma, EX Ko'ouken is an invisible projectile. The startup speed is the same as the fireball but once fired the projectile has interesting properties. The attack immediately stretches across the entire screen and will automatically appear and detonate on the opponent's location from the projectile's horizontal trajectory. If the opponent is airborne it'll blow up below them which can be an anti-air and like all EX Projectiles this attack will neutralize and go through normal projectile specials.
- Kyokugen Ko'ou ( + ) - This is a new move for Takuma where he punches with a short-ranged Ko'ouken like Ryo or Yuri.
- The version causes a soft knockdown, starts up fast enough to combo from Light attacks, and can be Drive and Super Canceled. It's decent for getting a knockdown, though the heavier version is much more useful in all of Takuma's bigger combos.
- + will start up slower but more importantly moves the Takuma forward on hit while not knocking the opponent down. Takuma will automatically dash forward after hitting the opponent; the improved recovery time allows the player to link a Crouching Light Punch afterward on hit or tack on more hits in corner juggles.
- Kyokugen Ko'ou ( + + ) - Has a long, delayed startup where the Takuma's upper body is protected with guard frames. Causes a crumple if the opponent is hit. One of Takuma's only reversal options though it can be beaten by safe meaties, low attacks, and throws. Converts into large damage in the corner.
- Although the startup's slow, this move removes over 50% of the opponent's guard gauge. Useful to keep in mind if the opponent's guard gauge has taken a beating.
- Zanretsuken ( + ) - A quick 'ranbu' autocombo that punches the opponent seven times on hit. The startup and recovery on this move is fast so if whiffed it can be difficult for the opponent to punish. Causes a hard knockdown though the most common use of this attack is to Drive Cancel the last hit into Kyokugen Houken ( + ) in corner combos.
- When trying to Drive Cancel into Kyokugen Houken ( + ) the opponent must be hit close in to Takuma since the move doesn't suck the opponent in at a set range. This limits the Drive Cancel applications of this move when outside of the corner.
- Zanretsuken ( + + ) - Any anywhere juggle move that lets Takuma land colossal corner damage and stun. Since the range is terribly short, it's only worth using against a cornered opponent after a hit reset in a combo or after an anti-air or air-to-air. EX Zanretsuken deals heavy damage and stun, and the anywhere juggle lets Takuma stack on extra hits in a corner combo before continuing with a Drive Cancel. As with the normal version, this can be Drive Canceled into ( + ) to continue taking the opponent for a ride.
- Hien Shippuukyaku ( Charge, + ) - A flying forward kick that can go over low attacks but is slightly negative on block. An important part of Takuma's midscreen and corner combos.
- The version travels 1/3 of the screen and hits once and will connect from Light attacks. Works in simple hitconfirms to score a knockdown and can be used many times in corner juggles due to the fast speed. The recovery can be Drive Canceled on hit and on block Takuma's safe against most realistic punishes.
- The heavier version has a longer startup, travels 2/3 screenlength and will hit twice and launch the opponent higher into the air which can be followed up anywhere. Works best off of + or after Kyokugen Ko'ou ( + + ) crumples the opponent since the attack is too slow to work in common juggles. Unsafe on block.
- Hien Shippuukyaku ( Charge, + + ) - An even better Hien Shippuukyaku that connects off of Light attacks and launches the enemy even higher in the air. This is Takuma's combo party starter against a cornered opponent that leads into huge damage. Doesn't lead into much damage from midscreen, though it's only slightly negative on block so of all the versions it's the safest for risky plays.
- Kyokugen Houken ( + ) - This time around Takuma has a more standard command grab instead of his old running grab. This is a good change since the new iteration starts up faster and isn't as telegraphed as before. What makes this command grab really great is that the player can land a full grounded combo afterward and even Drive Cancel into the grab to extend combos.
- The version keeps the opponent in front of Takuma while the version tosses the opponent behind him similar to EX Iori's command grab ( + ). That said, stick with the grab in corner combos.
- There isn't any invulnerability on this grab so it can't be used as a reversal and the grab speed isn't instant so it'll lose if the opponent presses a button.
- Kyokugen Houken ( + + ) - Has startup invuln which helps to catch the opponent. Keeps the opponent in front of Takuma and causes enough stun to allow the player to continue the combo with a jumping attack, though the timing is really tight.
- Haou Shoukouken ( + ) - The mandatory DM for every Kyokugen fighter. Works the same as other Haou Shoukoukens; possible anti-air due to the huge size, fullscreen punish, projectile war tool. The player can combo into this DM from + or in aerial juggles though Ryuuko Ranbu ( + ) does more damage and connects in most of the same situations.
- version goes slow, stays on the screen longer. travels across the screen faster and would be the better choice for trying to super through a projectile or punish an odd whiff. Either version can be rolled through and punished or even Superjumped over from proper timing, and the chip damage is minimal.
- Haou Shoukouken ( + + ) - More-damaging triple Haou Shoukouken. Connects from the same situations as the normal DM but works as a heavier punish.
- The opponent can't jump or roll through the barrage.
- It's possible to punish projectiles from fullscreen with this attack though it's easier to input Ko'ouken ( + + ) for faster reacting and less meter commitment.
- Ryuuko Ranbu ( + ) - Takuma runs forward into an autocombo that ends with a Haou Shoukouken finsiher. Works as a grounded and aerial juggle combo finisher that deals more damage than Haou Shoukouken. Unsafe on block.
- version starts faster and so connects in more combo situations. The version has a delayed startup in which Takuma is invunerable before dashing forward. It can catch sloppy meaty attacks as a reversal but isn't as good as most basic 'DP' type moves.
- Can be MAX Canceled up to the 11th hit though the DM will do little damage.
- Built Upper ( + + ) - A very Shin Shouryuken-like uppercut. The uppercut moves straight up with no forward horizontal range and functions as a reversal and anti-air against a close opponent. After flying upward off the screen Takuma will slam down on the opponent's current location. The upward uppercut deals no damage but will send the opponent skyward to get dunked on from the downward smash.
Tips and Tricks
- Any anti-air—though especially j.CD—can lead into fbf+AC in the corner which can be Drive Canceled to cause some real damage.
- f+B xx [db]~f+D is a combo that's crucial to playing Takuma though getting the charge fast enough is difficult. There isn't any way to charge partition or perform a shortcut: immediately after inputting + move to . The player should already be sitting on a charge before Takuma even starts his f+B animation. His command normal can be canceled very late which also makes getting the required charge much easier.
- cl.C f+B xx [db]~f+D, [db]~f+B - (289)
- Takuma's meterless midscreen punish.
- (corner)cl.C f+B xx [db]~f+D, [db]~f+B, fbf+P - (375)
- Meterless corner combo. Could also be ended with [db]~f+B, cl.C instead of the Zanretsuken in order to get a hit reset.
- cr.B cr.B xx qcf+B - (121)
- Basic knockdown combo from a low hitconfirm. Not very damaging, though it pushes the opponent back toward the corner so it's decent. cr.B could also be canceled into [db]~f+B for less damage, or qcf+A which doesn't cause a knockdown.
- cl.C f+B xx [db]~f+D, qcf,hcb+A - (461)
- Heavy damage for little meter, and it works midscreen. Quite painful as a punish or after a command grab or cross up.
- (corner) cl.C f+B xx [db]~f+D, [db]~f+B, [db]~f+B, qcf,hcb+A - (524)
- Even more damage for just one bar. Make sure to avoid inputting the ranbu DM too early or it may cause a Super Cancel instead of linking.
- (corner) cr.B cr.B xx [db]~f+BD, qcf+D, fbf+P - (338)
- Not too threatening until Takuma has can afford to Drive Cancel the zanretsuken into his command grab.
- (corner)qcf+BD, [db]~f+D, [db]~f+B, [db]~f+B, qcf,hcb+A - (541)
- Crumple followup for the corner.
- (corner) cr.B cr.B xx [db]~f+BD, qcf+D, [db]~f+B, qcf,hcb+A - (492)
- Nice damage from a low cr.B starter.
- (corner)cl.C f+B xx [db]~f+D, [db]~f+B, fbf+P (DC) hcb+B, cl.C f+B xx [db]~f+D, [db]~f+B, fbf+P - ( )
- No bar corner loop. Somewhat high damage and stun, but don't expect it to cause a stun on its own.
- (corner)cl.C f+B xx [db]~f+D, [db]~f+B, fbf+P (DC) hcb+B, cl.C f+B xx [db]~f+D, [db]~f+B, [db]~f+B, qcf,hcb+A - (627)
- Simple loop into ranbu.
- (corner) cr.B cr.B xx [db]~f+BD, qcf+D, [db]~f+B, fbf+P (DC) hcb+B, cl.C f+B xx [db]~f+D, [db]~f+B,fbf+P - ( )
- Low corner starter.
Takuma can still do 100% stun combos as in the Arcade version, though his stun output has been slightly toned down so it's a little hard to get a full stun. Regardless, his corner combos do huge damage so it's very worthwhile to learn the loops and setups into however much damage is needed.
- (corner) cl.C f+B xx [db]~f+D, [db]~f+B, [db]~f+B, cl.C xx fbf+AC (DC) hcb+B...
- (corner) cl.C f+B xx qcf+D, cr.A xx [db]~f+BD, qcf+D, [db]~f+B, [db]~f+B, cl.C cc fbf+AC (DC) hcb+B...
- (corner) cr.B cr.B xx [db]~f+BD, qcf+D, [db]~f+B, [db]~f+B, cl.C cc fbf+AC (DC) hcb+B...
- The first starter is pretty simple, the second one will deal overall more stun damage due to the extra hits but it also burns more meter for the [db]~f+BD, and the third starter costs a bar to begin but it's being started from a low hitconfirm so it's pretty useful and easier to land.
- Normally you will start with the second combo starter because you need to include the qcf+D > cr.A link at least once for the combo to dizzy.
- j.D, cl.C f.B xx qcf+D, cr.A xx [db]~f+BD, qcf+D, [db]~f+B, [db]~f+B, cl.C xx fbf+AC (DC) hcb+B, cl.C f.B xx [db]~f+D > [db]~f+B, [db]~f+B, cl.C xx fbf+AC DC hcb+B, cl.C f.B xx [db]~f+D, [db]~f+B, [db]~f+B, cl.C (stun), j.D, cl.C f.B xx [db]~f+D, [db]~f+B, qcf, hcb+A
- An example of the full 100% damage combo. Requires 2 meter and 2 drive. Can be started midscreen.
Takuma's HD starters are pretty simple:
- cl.C f+B
- cr.B cr.B cr.B
- cl.C f+B (HD) cl.C f+B xx [db]~f+D, [ [db]~f+B (HDC) qcf+D, ] x4 fbf+P (HDB) hcb+B, cl.C f+B xx [db]~f+D, [db]~f+B, [db]~f+B, qcf,hcb+A - (890)
- Crazy damage for very little meter. Takuma actually builds meter after the command grab since HD mode expires so it's really easy to have enough meter for the DM.
- This works as a fullscreen corner carry combo, though the timing can be a little more difficult since the [db]~f+B Drive Cancel timing is stricter.