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Hazama is a unique offensive character. With his stepdash and short normals, he may seem like a weak character. However, his Drive gives him an amazing approaching tool with several followups. Paired with his stance and other specials, Hazama has a variety of tools to approach and open up any character as he chooses. Hazama needs to be careful with how he approaches, however, as his Drive is a limited resource and he lacks defensive tools outside of system mechanics. Played well, Hazama uses his toolset to engage from almost anywhere on the screen and open up his opponents.
|Lore:||Hazama is a captain of the Novus Orbis Librarium's Intelligence Department and one of the first antagonists of the series. In reality, he is an artificial human created as a host for Yuuki Terumi, a former member of the Six Heroes and the creator of the Azure Grimoire and, by extension, the Black Beast. At the end of Chrono Phantasma, he and Terumi become separate, and he gains his own will. During the events of Central Fiction, he puts his manipulation skills he picked up from his time as Terumi's host in order to pursue his own mysterious agenda.|
|Hazama uses his unique toolset to pick his approaches from anywhere on screen. Once he's in, he uses mixup tools such as a command grab and solid high/low mixup with his unique stance.|
Named after a snake that eats its own tail, Hazama's Drive is manifested as a stretching chain in the shape of a snake. He can cover many different angles and distances by shooting a Drive move. What's more is that, at any point during the chain's travel, Hazama can follow up by either retracting the chain (~A) or using the snake head as an anchor point to slingshot him around the stage (~B, ~C, or ~D).
Most of the time, if the snake head hits the opponent, you can follow up by zipping in with ~D and linking an air normal to convert into a combo. However, there are certain distances (which differ for each Drive move) where the chain will cause minimal hit or block stun, so you must be careful not to try and hit your opponent with chains up close or in the particular chain's "dead zone".
In order to prevent Hazama being able to fly around indefinitely using his drive and stalling for time, his drive has a limited number of uses:
- Maximum of 2 stocks
- 180F cooldown to regain 2 stocks after last stock consumed
- Cooldown pauses while airborne
- 2 stocks regain on hit (but 0 regain on block) meaning that stocks are essentially unlimited when actually hitting and comboing his opponent
- Stocks are consumed upon using either A, B, C, or D cancels
- All of Hazama's Drive moves add 200% meter gain to the combo
- Fast, anti-air useful against deep jump-ins
- Whiffs on all crouching hitboxes excluding Tager and Hakumen
- Hits standing Jubei
Fastest normal Hazama has, making it good for interrupting pressure, as a quick anti-air, a confirm, or if you really need a non-committal hitbox in front of you. The priority isn't great though, so be cautious during footsies.
- Much shorter range than most of the cast's 5Bs
- High frame advantage makes this move a staple in pressure strings
5B, even with its short range is a very, very good normal. This normal allows Hazama to use stagger pressure like no other and turns him into a frame-trap monster. Landing a counter-hit with this can link into a second 5B, making this a solid confirm tool.
- Jump-cancellable on hit
- Okay anti-air in some situations, because it has a high vertical hit-box
- Has a somewhat big cancel window
5C has short horizontal range and a long recovery, but is still a great button to have. It has the lowest proration in Hazama's entire moveset, making it his strongest combo starter in terms of damage reward. On a crouching or counter-hit, it can link into 6C, which can then lead into 3K-4K damage territory, and can put the opponent in the corner to boot. Can revolver into 6C or a delayed 2C on block for frame traps.
- High-priority jab
- Faster than most of the cast's 2As
Nifty little crouching jab. It's speed and hitbox can help break you out of pressure, and tighten up your 5B blockstrings.
- Very fast, low recovery
- One of Hazama's longest reaching normals
- Good for tick-throw
- Makes Hazama's hurtbox shrink
2B has good reach for how fast the normal is and most opponents pressing buttons within the same range will be beat by 2B. That being said, the range itself is not great, so you'll have to know your spacing. In pressure, it is a very fast low and an essential tool in his mix-up. Not only is it a fast low, you also can easily go for a very sneaky tick-throw if you 2B in deep. Finally it makes Hazama's hurt-box very small, which aids it in beating many more normals than one would expect.
- Head Invuln 8-15
- Anti-air with a very large reward
- Also useful in pressure
The head invulnerability on this move doesn't kick in until over halfway through its lenghty startup, so at times, you will have to use alternative anti-airs such as 5A. But if you do manage to hit with this, oh boy, does it hit hard. A counter-hit causes a large amount of untechable stun, which can link into a stance special for a meaty combo.
Jump-cancellable on block, which can be used for pressure extensions.
- 110% bonus proration
- Overhead that is very hard to see
This overhead is very hard to react to, and has great reward off it when he has 50 meter. Cancels into Serpent's Infernal Rapture, and can be linked off a Counter Hit. Links into 5A as well on some taller characters like Hakumen and Tager.
- Fatal Counter
- Slow normal used in pressure that, when blocked, puts Hazama in a great position
- Can catch yomi blockers attempting to block 6A
Low with a startup that looks like 6A, making for a high/low mixup by default. If an opponent blocks this move, they have no other option afterwards but to block, or mash some kind of reversal. +1 is very strong and can definitely be very useful; however, this move is very slow and Hazama can be easily mashed out on before it connects, so use it sparingly.
- Okay frame-trap tool
- Very good combo-filler
- Can be canceled into his Drive attacks on hit or block
This move is used as filler in Hazama's more damaging combos due to floor bounce and massive meter gain on hit. Outside of combo filler, it can create a natural frame trap if gatlinged into.
- Great reach, combined with great reward, makes this a good poke
- Not that fast, and with a lot of recovery, it is also very risky
- Useful to end blockstrings
As a poke it has deceptively long reach, and is a very good starter. Counter-hit guarantees a good combo even without meter. 3C has many uses in block-strings. Generally it is just used as a block-string ender; in that use case its primary use is to set up 3C > Venom Sword as a way to create space so you can return to neutral. When you've become mix-up heavy on someone this normal can surprise them and catch them trying to jump or mash.
- Good priority
- Useful as a rising anti-air
- Priority can make certain chain approaches safe, depends on distance
- Great air to air
- Long untechable time
- Proper spacing can make certain chain approaches safe
- Combo filler
- Okay as an approach sometimes
- 50% Heat Gain decay to combo per hit
Hazama's loopable jump-in normal. Does not float as high as before. Only the first two hits are jump cancellable.
- Good cross-up tool
- Hazama's primary jump-in tool in pressure
This moves extends Hazama's hurtbox downwards, which puts him on the ground faster after 5D~D, allowing for a variety of both pressure strings and combo routes.
Not your best chain. It's range, "Far" version startup, and angles it can cover are all subpar in comparison to things like j.D, so it sees its most use as a combo extender. Can zone and approach like the rest, just not the best.
This chain is good for evasive maneuvers. 2D~D will launch you sky high, and 2D~B will slingshot you from one side of the stage to the other.
In combos, you'll typically see this chain in corner combos, when the opponent is high in the air. Can also be used in this fairly execution difficult string that gives good damage and corner carry as a reward: 214D~C>6C>5D~D>whiff j.2C>5C>2D. From here you can either go into Falling Fang or 4D to end out the combo.
Good for keeping opponents on the ground or intercepting air-dashing opponents from afar.
After you hit with this chain, doing either Hungry Coils or 4D is a good idea. If the opponent is close to the corner, though, you could always chain in and follow up with some air normals into Shadow Serpent. Can also lead into a couple of j.C loops if confirmed correctly.
Pretty solid run-away tool. Can help catch players trying to bait your anti-airs.
4D~D after landing 5C or 2C on an airborne opponent, as this is your staple anti-air hitconfirm. Typically used to add damage before ending a combo with j.C > Shadow Serpent.
This chain is fairly good. It has longer reach than ground 5D and isn't as fixed as 5D either (i.e. you can use it at different heights). Good for pressing grounded or aerial opponents. Can use to either keep opponents away or go in on them. Since chain follow-ups can be canceled faster now, j.5D~D into another aerial chain like j.6D or j.4D is quite the slick maneuver if you want to close the gap between you and your opponent.
This chain isn't used much in combos, but if you land it on an opponent as a starter, don't be afraid to chain in.
This chain is good for those times that you're really high up in the air and you want to get back on the ground quicker or hit the opponent if they're directly under you. This chain has a deceptive horizontal hitbox, or rather, you wouldn't think it would hit opponents below you at certain positions to the left or right but it does.
This chain is used the least in terms of combos, but just like j.5D, be sure to chain in if you land a good hit.
This chain is frequently used to approach/pressure opponents on the ground. Like j.5D it is also one of your best mobility options.
In combos, this chain is most commonly used after tossing an opponent into the corner with Hungry Coils wallbounce or after Venom Sword counter hit.
This chain can be used to catch opponents who are dashing in on you and are close enough to where j.6D would not hit with maximum hitstun or would whiff entirely. It can also be used like j.2D to catch opponents while you are at high altitudes.
Also not seen in combos that much, but like j.5D and j.2D, it is completely valid as a starter.
Good runaway chain. Usually sees use in combos when doing something like 4D > j.8D > Hungry Coils.
Can also be used in j.C loops. After the final j.C slash, cancel into this chain. If you're in the right position, the long version will come out in time for you to ~D follow-up and do more j.C slashes.
Sometimes, it's best not to chain in, especially on block where your opponent could punish you with an anti-air. Also good to use for further harassment at long distances or to play lame when you have a life lead.
Staple follow-up in combos in order to combo into another chain hit or Hungry Coils.
- 27F~ possible to cancel into various aerial moves
Primarily an evasive follow-up. Can be used to evade projectiles (save for really large ones like Jin's 632146C) and bait anti-airs. Because of the trajectory, Hazama will end up coming down right on top of the opponent by the end of this follow-up's animation.
Can also be used to set up fancy high-low mix-ups in the corner with 2D~B.
In CF2, it got projectile invul during 1-23F to help you avoid fullscreen punishes.
- 26F~ possible to cancel into various aerial moves
Hazama launches himself forward and ends up on the other side of the chain. On hit or block, this chain can be used to appear behind the opponent and bait anti-airs as well. Make sure to use this follow-up every once in a while to mix up your opponent.
- 12F~ possible to cancel into various aerial moves
Your staple approach/combo chain. This chain gets you to the opponent quick and straightfoward. It's like having a super IAD but in many directions.
Used in combos so you can follow up with normals.
Sends the opponent flying up and forward. If you don't follow it up, it puts the opponent very far away. In the corner you can special cancel link Devouring Fang/Rising Fang. Midscreen you can link into Falling Fang if you buffer it with a Serpent's Benediction.
In CF2, it sends the opponent flying a little less further, allowing you to follow up with Devouring Fang buffered with a Serpent's Benediction.
Hazama's back throw midscreen causes a wallbounce allowing for a follow up. Special cancel into stance then link Devouring Fang (S) for a combo. In the corner, use either Venom Sword or Crush Trigger.
This throw works really well due to its range and is even more effective due to Hazama's movement options. There are many situations where Hazama can fly in and just catch people in the air.
Air throw causes a very high bounce now allowing for link into 6A or 5C for a combo.
When blocking 6A+B
Your universal Alpha Counter that uses the same animation as 5B, and arguably Hazama's most reliable reversal option as it doesn't rely on your burst gauge being full, and though it has a rather stubby hitbox, it covers a good amount of space in front of him.
- Crush Trigger breaks Guard if not Barrier-blocked.
- Depletes opponent's Barrier Gauge on a successful block.
- Can be charged to deplete more of the opponent's Barrier Gauge on Barrier block.
Your standard Crush Trigger. It's not really your go to option for getting past your opponent's defense since Hazama has plenty of other tools, but it can still get the job done. Can be used after 3C to get an easy combo going.
Venom Sword - Jabaki
Hazama's other projectile. Decent overall thanks to its reach, advantage, and properties on counter-hit.
In short midscreen strings, you can use this after 3C to add some significant corner push at the cost of the oki options you'd get after a closer knockdown. In the corner, this after 3C can help set up a decent meterless combo.
Serpent's Benediction - Jasetsu
- Freezes in place for 22 frames
Hazama's stance special. Gives access to arguably the strongest moves in his kit: three powerful specials that can be used to either start or extend combos on hit, and a fully invincible super command grab. This creates scary mixup potential that can put the opponent on edge.
However, using this move sticks him in place for 22 frames, and he is in a counter hit state the entire time, so attempts to use this when being approached will cause you to eat a healthy punish. Follow-ups can also be avoided by jumping back and barrier blocking if you get predictable. All followups from 214D are enhanced.
Vengeful Viper - Jagai
- Causes crumple
- Can be rapid-cancelled during the follow-up stance.
- Hits opponents OTG trying to late rise.
During the third active frame (frame 17), Hazama can then use weakened versions of his Stance specials, forcing the opponent into playing a guessing game on what you plan to do on block. On hit, 214B~B is your staple method of converting into solid damage.
Can use Charged versions on frame 22, six frames after the uncharged follow-ups are able to be used. Note that since the Stance is a part of the moves recovery, you can rapid-cancel during it, though this goes away if you use Serpent's Redemption.
Serpent's Redemption - Jakatsu
Hazama can dash during his stance. You can use this to position the follow-ups for maximum effectiveness, most notably to forward dash so his super command grab will connect. Follow-ups are available immediately during either version of Serpent's Redemption. You can dash forward as many times as you like, but can dash backwards only once.
Falling Fang - Ressenga
A forward-moving, relatively fast overhead. The forward movement is nice because it allows you to do an overhead in places where 6A wouldn't reach, especially if you get pushed out by barrier blocking. Beats out lows and throws during pressure, but loses to standing attacks and reversals. The charged version causes a hard knockdown, while the uncharged version can only be followed up on crouching with a microdashed 2A.
Rising Fang - Gashoukyaku
An anti-air rising kick with a large vertical reach. Hazama's normal anti-airs are good, but this really takes the cake in terms of range and priority due to its invincibility. Since it takes a long time for stance attacks to come out, don't expect to use this as a wake-up reversal.
The normal version of this move is now key to converting midscreen meterless strings into extended combos. As a mixup, it beats out any normal attack and throws, but is extremely unsafe on block and can be low-profiled. The charged version of this move causes the opponent to fly far away midscreen allowing for easy link into Hungry Coils or 6D.
Devouring Fang - Zaneiga
Hazama's other standing low. This is also one of the strongest combo starters/extenders in Hazama's arsenal. Normal version is now the go to move to end combos midscreen after 214B for oki. In pressure this beats out standing attacks, but loses to lows and throws. Can also clash or even go through certain reversals with proper timing. Landing a counter-hit with this can net a good combo with or without meter. Charged version causes the opponent to go into a long air-spin, leading to damaging combos.
Serpent's Haste - Kamae Chuudan
And then sometimes it's best not to do anything at all. Stance-cancelling is good if you think your opponent is going to predict your stance mix-up, or if you've been pushed far enough out that your follow-ups will whiff without forward stance dashing.
Shadow Serpent - Jameijin
- CH causes groundbounce.
- NOT an overhead.
- On whiff the recovery is cancelable into anything EXCEPT blocking and backdash.
An aerial spike that sends Hazama straight down to the ground. Primarily used to end air combos, but can be used to get Hazama down from the air without wasting a chain stock, or can even be used in mixups and feints, since on whiff the recovery is cancelable into anything EXCEPT blocking and backdash; you will have to wait until the recovery frames ended, then you can block/backdash. This means that this move is punishable by some fast, far range attacks, such as Carnage Scissors, so be aware when using this.
Never use this to hit an opponent who is below you from on high, as Hazama's leg has a massive hurtbox attached to it, meaning it can be countered by many attacks from the opponent.
Bloody Fangs - Gasaishou
Command grab that launches opponent into the air directly in front of Hazama. You aren't going to get huge damage from this most of the time, but is still a good tool for getting through your opponent's defense, okizeme, and combos that leave you in a favourable position.
Hungry Coils - Jakou
- Fatal Counter. Triggers wallbounce anywhere.
- Cannot hit standing or crouching opponents, regardless of hitboxes.
- Can catch Mai players attempting to charge their spears in the air
- Unlike Hazama's normal drive moves, this must be barrier blocked.
A special chain that catches air opponents and flings them behind Hazama. Very risky to use as an anti-air; only use if you are hard-reading your opponent. Otherwise, it's a great way to change positioning during a combo and tacks on a good deal of damage.
If close to the corner, but not close enough to trigger the wallbounce, you can combo after this by RCing the second hit then following up with j.6D~D. On corner wallbounce, many things can be linked afterwards though most of the time it's safer just to OTG 5C into some ender. Can now cancel into Eternal Coils of the Dragon Serpent easier after chain is almost retracted.
Serpent's Infernal Rapture - Jayoku Houtenjin
- Fatal Counter
No longer a reversal in Central Fiction, as all invincibility has been removed. Instead, it can take advantage of gaps in opponents pressure, such as standing overheads, though this largely depends on the gap in the blockstring, the type of blocking used, etc. Outside of that, its the only feasible way to get reward off of a normal 6A or 6B hit, and if used off the right combo starter (such as 5C or 3C), you can land damage anywhere between 4-5K, making this a good investment of 50 meter.
Unless we're talking about this move in Overdrive, in which case you have a 4 frame reversal with fully invincible startup that Fatal Counters. Have fun.
Though officially not throw invulnerable, this attack does put you in the air for a number of frames, making you technically throw invulnerable.
Eternal Coils of the Dragon Serpent - Mizuchi Rekkazan
A combo ender. The initial projectile seeks and spawns at the opponent's feet. However, there is a minimum distance for this move, meaning that if the opponent is close enough, the initial projectile will whiff. Can also be used to situationally beat or catch projectiles like Jin's ice wave super, or Mu's 236D startup. OD version is great for ending combos, tacking on huge damage along with Hazama's OD life drain ring stealing health until the end of the animation.
If you Rapid Cancel at the right time you can regain control of Hazama with the opponent still stuck in the coils. Not the most meter-efficient way to setup, use only if you're going to win the round with the next hit and you feel like being an ass.
The Serpent's Unholy Wrath - Orochi Burensou
Hazama's super command grab. It's invulnerable until its active frames and does some pretty good damage. This move makes stance forward dash very threatening and opens up more mix-up potential to really crumble your opponent. Since it comes out on the first frame of Benediction, you can also use this as a handy situational reversal. It can also be rapid-cancelled from the second hit onward. Pair this move up with Overdrive and you've got a one way ticket to damage heaven. Hazama even delays this move while it's playing out to allow more time for his life-steal ring to do more work.
As you can imagine, the motion is not the most natural thing to pull off consistently, even less so when trying to do it fast. But through the power of input leniency, there exists an easy way to pull this out. Simply input 632146 and mash D. Do this fast enough, and the game will register it as the proper motion. (Note: tested with console and PC version).
Another method to input it fast is 63214D~6D
Glimmering Fang of the Basilisk - Meija Gekkouga
ABCD during Overdrive
- Does not cost Heat, but inmediately ends Overdrive if used
- Becomes stronger and flashier with Active Flow
Has good range and is the only meterless reversal Hazama has, but you're usually better off not using it and staying in Overdrive instead, be it using OD Serpent's Infernal Rapture for reversals (as it can lead to way more than Exceed Accel), or taking advantage of the sick buffs Hazama gets to his chains. In spite of this, this is one of the more damaging Exceed Accels due to how it also sneaks in some lifesteal effect mid way through the move.
Hungry Darkness of 1000 Souls - Senkon Meiraku
A situationally comboable astral. It's also got a lot of invulnerability, so it can be used against very slow moves or in situations where you can do this on reaction like during the superflash of some move.
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