"Azrael is a member of Sector Seven who spends most of his time moving from one battle to the next in search of a strong opponent. He is entirely obsessed with using his own raw power to fight, and has never used a weapon. However, due to his super-human strength, he can't go all out in battle; thus, he has imposed a limiter of some sort on himself."
Azrael is a big, heavy-hitting offensive character. He has to effectively use his teleport dashes to get around the screen, and try to get in on the opponent. Once in he has to use his pokes and various specials to get a combo that usually ends with a "weakpoint" attack. Azrael's unique Drive is the ability to apply weakpoints, which can lead to big damage.
Drive: The Terror
Azrael's drive attacks reveal weak points on the opponent when they hit the opponent. Weakpoints are active for roughly 17 seconds before disappearing if not used.
- Upper Weakpoint Moves: 5D / 6D / j.D / 236D
- Lower Weakpoint Moves: 2D / 3D / j.2D / 214D
These moves gain new properties when you hit the corresponding weak point. This consumes the weak point, but you can re-apply it in the same combo. Of course, the moves apply the same weak points that they get the additional properties from. All regular ground drives can potentially be followed up on CH without weakpoint. Hornet (and possibly Valiant), can be followed up on CH with a regular-style combo, and you can use the weakpoint earned within that very same combo. Each drive's "weakpoint version" has repeat proration.
The properties the moves gain:
- 5D – Staggers, can go into 5B>~ for a combo.
- 2D - Knockdown, which can be followed up with 2A>5A>5B to aerial.
- 6D - Bounces, goes into 5B>TCL,etc.
- 3D - Bounces, Goes into 5B>~.
- j.D / j.2D - Ground bounces the opponent into the air to follow-up with a combo, staggers on ground hit.
- 236D (Valiant Crash) - Knocks the opponent away, enabling Valiant Charger. Can repeat (6>5C) multiple times for insane corner carry, or various other attacks in the corner.
- 214D (Hornet Bunker) – Sort of like GG's Dust. Enables Hornet Chaser to be used, followed up with aerial combos.
- 236236D (Black Hawk Stinger) - Can't be blocked high with UW, or low with LW. Unblockable with both but can be Barrier blocked if in the air.
Overdrive: Mind Colosseo
Azrael's drive attacks now reveal weak points even on block. Weak points are not used up when you hit the opponent with weak point moves. Weak points do not disappear over time like they normally would as long as OD is active. Black Hawk Stinger and Scud Punishment are enhanced. You can use each of Azrael's drive attacks in the same combo for big damage.
- Good amount of health.
- Does solid damage on average (Weakpoint damage considered).
- Does great meterless damage with Weakpoints.
- Has possibly the best back dash in the game.
- Has a decent DP (214B - Growler Field), that can also absorb projectiles and gains one of his own in return (up to 3).
- Because of his health, back dash, and DP, he has relatively good defense overall.
- Valiant Charger combos give great corner carry and good damage.
- Large body, relatively slow character.
- Teleport-type movement could take some getting used to when you're just starting out.
- 5A/2A have short reach, doesn't have a good balance of move ranges.
- Has combos that involve links/delayed gatlings, if execution is a problem.
- Big damage combos require you to have weakpoints already applied in most cases.
- Because of the above it means Azrael has to get multiple chances to land decent combos.
- Because of the above it means the opponent bursting can really hinder Azrael's gameplan due to the nature of weakpoints and getting them.
- Potentially has some noticeably bad or tough match-ups. (Hazama / Jin / Hakumen / Taokaka / Valkenhayn / maybe even Tager come to mind.)
B+C in Mid-Air
6A+B during blockstun w/50%
46C during Tiger Magnum
6C during Cobra Spike
236B (After absorbing projectile with Growler Field)
214C or 22C on Downed Opponent
Press  during Valiant Crash w/ upper weakpoint applied
Press  during Hornet Bunker w/ lower weakpoint applied
Black Hawk Stinger
|Black Hawk Stinger
Azrael's general gameplan is to use his movement and pokes at neutral to get in and land a hit so that he can apply his weakpoints. With weakpoints Azrael's combos tend to do big damage even meterless, without weakpoints his damage is average at best. Knowing this, you want to make sure you always try and get a weakpoint applied, in some cases you might be inclined to do combos that lead to getting both weakpoints for big damage on the next combo or getting a potential unblockable from one of his Distortions - Black Hawk Stinger.
This is the range you want to be in most cases. From here Azrael can use his pokes to put on pressure and try and mix-up the opponent.
Back dashing will help you avoid putting yourself in a bad situation if you can't readily attack yourself. Forward dashing at close range can lead to a cross-up mix-up through the opponent, but will lose to mashing so be careful.
Go for your basic pokes and strings, as well as possible Drive moves as mix-ups for big damage or getting weakpoints. j.B is really good, and can easily cross-up the opponent. Remember Gustaf is safe on block and can be RC'd for a possible mix-up or tricky cross-through setup. Valiant and Hornet have some armor and hit high/low respectively so they could be possibly useful against some mashing.
For a close range Anti-Air you will mostly want to use 5B.
At this range Azrael's threat starts to diminish.
Here is where proper use of Azrael's movement is most important. Always consider using his back dash to get out whenever you don't feel comfortable, and be wary of using his forward dash since you could very well run right into an attack. Remember you can jump cancel his forward dash into specials like Gustaf and Tiger Magnum.
His go to poke at this distance would be 5C, but he doesn't get much off it in most cases on a regular hit, mostly just going straight into Gustaf. You could also try going for 6C or even Sentinel Dump, the latter loses to multi-hit moves or even jab mash so be careful with just throwing it out. At this range you can also try using j.2C to change your air momentum or possibly get in for pressure unexpectedly.
The anti-airs at this range vary in effectiveness. You could still try 5B as usual though. 2C could be used in some cases where it would seem like they are too far to attempt it with 5B. 6A tends to lose to most air attacks, but it might be effective if used preemptively. 6B is fairly awkward and doesn't seem to be used a lot but I think it needs further testing to see how useful or not it really is.
With this distance between you and the opponent, you could try and use Growler to absorb any projectiles that seem easy to react to. Some characters can immediately follow up their projectiles so you must be careful, even if you absorb it and are invincible you are still giving up pressure to them.
Azrael is borderline useless at this range. If you get to this range in certain match-ups you are going to have to run a gauntlet of attacks (Mu / Lambda as examples). Use your movement to get out of this range as safely as possible, usually it won't take much to get back to that mid-range but you're accomplishing nothing here until you do.
Phalanx Cannon is one of the few moves that Azrael has that can go full-screen. The problem is you first need to absorb a projectile with Growler. This is easily recognized so the opponent can then expect it coming as well. It does however go through and destroy most if not all other projectiles and even combos into itself or BHS.
Even though BHS can reach practically full-screen, use caution when trying to punish attacks from this range with it. It has practically no invincibility after start-up so any attacks already out will hit him out of it if it is in his line of fire. This move is NOT like Spencer's Bionic Arm.
Once you are near your opponent you need to try and establish some fear into them. You almost ALWAYS want to get at least one weakpoint from your combos. There are already quite a few combos that actually give both weakpoints, usually if at least one is already applied. With the weakpoints on, Azrael can do big meterless damage, with both he hits like a truck.
Azrael has a few moves that are actually + on block which means his pressure can be relatively safe depending on how you end your strings or what you go for as a mixup. His pressure however is relatively "short" on the actual strings before they end with either your mixup attempt or just playing it safe with a + move.
Your starting pokes for pressure will mostly consist of 5A, 5B, 2A at close-range. 5A is +1, 5B is ±0, 5BB is +5, 2A is +2, and Gustaf is +1. 6C is also +2 but it is mostly used at mid-range, along with 5C/2C/Gustaf. Your pressure strings could typically end with Gustaf, 2C, 5BB, or any of your Drive mix-up attempts/Forward Dash cross through.
Because Azrael is capable of forward dashing through the opponent, has a few + moves, and his j.B is a good cross-up, Azrael's pressure can still be relatively scary even though it can be short and not have the best "mixup". This comes from the fact that there is almost always a fear factor of what he might do, with almost everything leading to good damage if he has a weakpoint applied.
For mix-ups you have your Forward Dash which can cross-through the opponent, your Drives which each hit high or low and can lead to damage with a weakpoint or on CH or earn you a weakpoint, 2A/3C which hits low, j.B which is useful for crossing up, RCing moves combined with Forward Dash for a tricky mix-up, and finally CT to catch opponents off-guard. Another tricky thing to do is Sentinel Dump during pressure, if the opponent is crouching it will actually go over them and cross them up, which could prove effective at times. Unfortunately, Azrael's forward dash mix-up can lose to mashing.
Azrael has no real oki tools (after knockdown>getting a "guaranteed" advantage). Most of the combos will end with 6D/3D, j.D/j.2D, or TCL which knockdown but Azrael has nothing to force the opponent to respect his oki after the fact. You have to guess how they are going to react after getting knocked down and go from there. If the opponent is further away (like after TCL) you can immediately forward dash to make up ground but you aren't really getting any immediate guaranteed mix-up.
Azrael's Sentinel Dump has seen use to beat out tech rolls due to the nature of the move. Even if they try to tech roll forward, Sentinel Dump hits on both sides. If they happen to block it, it is still +12 so you at least don't lose pressure. It doesn't seem to cover all options so you probably can't use it after every single knockdown though, but it is something to consider, particularly in the corner.
You may also choose to try and go for 6D/3D to get the other weakpoint immediately after your air enders if they really don't want to tech, thus making your next combo even more scary. Besides that, you can go for pick-up combos off 2A for extra "Blue Beat" combos as long as the proration wasn't a lot, which can lead to getting both weakpoints as well. Or do 2C to possibly have enough time to actually reset the combo counter.
Using 2A > 5A > j.A after a knockdown can be effective even if they do neutral tech. All of that will actually whiff but as you are in the air and see that you can go for j.B which will actually cross them up at that point. So it works against no tech since it picks them up into an additional Blue Beat combo, but it's also somewhat useful against neutral tech. If they neutral tech>bach dash, the j.B could possibly catch them. This option "loses" to immediate rolls though and more than likely reversals.
If they do actually neutral tech you can go for your mix-ups, so more than likely you'll have to condition them to respect you by hopefully punishing their no tech/rolls.
Azrael has various uses for his meter, and there's no definite answer on what you should or shouldn't use it on.
The easiest use of meter would be using BHS as an ender for extra damage to your combos. This is easily setup after TCL or after any Throw. Another interesting thing to note is that if you have both weakpoints applied BHS becomes unblockable on the ground, this can be easily setup if you get the opponent to block 5C (they can Counter Assault/Burst). In most cases you probably only want to use meter for BHS if it will kill, but maybe you might want to do it to gain some momentum as well or take the health lead.
You may also want to consider ending some of your combos with Scud Punishment to use 50% Heat to gain both weakpoints immediately and gain SCP's special weakpoint effect. This is definitely something worth considering as part of your gameplan. This becomes more apparent if you actually have 100% Heat. With 100% you can do things like end combos with SCP, then immediately 5C>BHS into the unblockable setup. This isn't a "frame tight" setup, but it is relatively close it seems.
More advanced uses of meter would be using it to RC combos to get a weakpoint when normally you wouldn't, or to extend combos further off starters that might end short. One specific example would be RCing part of a combo so that you can go into Valiant Crash where you might not be able to normally. Another notable example is RCing after Gustaf and going into 3C>22C combos. Besides that you can RC some blocked attacks to try and get a mix-up, possibly with a forward dash through them.
Another advanced use of meter involves using CT mid-combo to increase damage or to make certain parts of combos possible that otherwise wouldn't be. Of course you could always try and use CT during pressure in hopes to guard break the opponent and get a free combo, but if they have good reactions you just wasted 25%.
Finally with 100% you can easily combo into AH. This is a completely viable option for Azrael, especially now that the burst requirement is removed. If you have the Heat and the opponent's health is at the needed range, there's really no reason not to use it. Use this to your advantage.
Defensively Azrael has a few options that really help him out of a tight situation.
First off, Azrael has a not-so-typical reversal. That is "Growler Field" performed with 214B and is chargeable. It has some start-up invincibility so it can be a reversal as stated but is Head, Body, Foot invul, which means it can be thrown(In reality however, it cannot be thrown). On hit it sends the opponent flying away from Azrael, which in retrospect can be counter-productive in some match-ups but at least it is better than them being right on top of you on offense. While it is active any projectiles or projectile property moves will be absorbed with up to 3 stocks, and Azrael is invincible during the absorbing animation. The move itself can be punished like any other reversal, so use it wisely.
- Special Note - In certain match-ups (like Taokaka), Growler can be punished ON HIT (non-CH) because of the way the move works and some character's ability to get in quickly even after teching. Taokaka was able to get a CH combo that did 4.7k meterless+oki. So you really need to think before using it.
The second thing to consider is that Azrael has a really good backdash. Knowing this you can get out of a lot of situations by simply blocking/IBing and knowing when you can escape. Or just back dashing to avoid things entirely in a "defensively neutral" situation just to try and be safe.
If you are getting pressured you can also use Azrael's Counter Assault with 50% Heat. Nothing too special about it.
One other thing to note, Black Hawk Stinger has practically NO invincibility after start-up, so DO NOT try to use this as a reversal. Scud Punishment does have some invincibility but if you think they are going to do something you should just use Growler (and RCing it if needed). Azrael's Astral does have some invincibility on start-up and is relatively fast so it may work as a situational reversal as well if you really want to bet it all on that.
- For more in-depth combos and information, please visit this thread:
- Notation Used
- jc = Jump Cancel
- RC = Rapid Cancel
- CH = Counter Hit
- IAD = Instant Air Dash
- OD = Overdrive
- (a>b)*X = Do These Inputs X Number of Times In A Row
- [X] = Press/Hold? This Direction After Input
- Forward Throw = 6B+C
- Back Throw = 4B+C
- Air Throw = B+C in Midair
- UW = Upper Weakpoint Applied
- LW = Lower Weakpoint Applied
- TCL = Tiger > Cobra > Leopard = 236C>46C>6C (TC = Tiger>Cobra)
- BHS = Black Hawk Stinger = 236236D
- These combos are taken from this video. (Not listed in shown order)
|Azrael Combos (Revisited) [By: けーご(Ke-Go)]|
- (5A) > 5A > 5B > 5BB > TCL = 2164
- 5A > 5B > 2C > 6D/3D = 1784
- UW 5A > 5B > 2C > 6D > TCL > 3D = 3155
- UW LW 5B > 2C > 6D > 6A > forward dash > 5B > TCL > 3D > 5B > j.B > j.C > jc j.D = ~5100
- UW LW 5B > 2C > 3D > 236D > (>5C)*4 > 6A > 3C > 5D = 4895
- CH 3D > 5B > j.B > j.C > jc j.2D > TCL > 5B > j.B > j.C > jc j.D = 4519
- j.B > 2B > TCL = ~2200
- Forward Throw > 6A > IAD j.C > 5B > j.B > j.C > jc j.D = ~3200
- Forward Throw > 6A > forward dash > 5C > TCL > 3D = 3536
- Back Throw > TCL > 3D = 2967
- UW Back Throw > 236D > (>5C)*4 > 6A > 3C > 22C > 2C > 6D = 4228
- Air Throw > 2A > 5A > j.B > j.C > jc j.D = 2405
- Forward Throw > 6A > IAD j.C > 214D > 5A > TC > 236D = ~3300? / Both Weakpoints
- UW 3C > 22C > 5B > 2C > 6D > 236D > 5A > j.A > j.C > jc j.2D = 3214 / Both Weakpoints
- UW 236D > (>5C)*3 >  > 6C >  > j.C > 214D > 5A > j.A > j.B > j.C > jc j.D = ~4100 / Both Weakpoints
- 5A > 5B > 5BB > TCL > BHS = ~3500
- UW 5B > 5BB > TCL > RC > forward dash > 236D > (>5C)*4 > 6A > 3C > 5D = 4697
- UW 5C > 236A > RC > 236D > (>5C)*4 > 6A > 3C > 5D = ~4700
- TCL > RC > IAD j.C > 6A > 2C > 5B > j.B > j.C > jc j.D = 4181
- UW TCL > RC > 236D > (>5C)*4 > 6A > 3C > 22C > 2C > 6D = 5168
100% + OD w/ 50% Health
- UW TCL > RC > IAD j.C > OD > 5B > j.B > j.C > jc j.D > 5D > 236D > (>5C)*4 > 6A > 3C > BHS = 7014
- 5A > 5B > 3C > 22C > 5B > j.B > j.C > jc j.D = ~2600
- 5A > 5B > TCL > 5A > j.A > j.B > j.C > jc j.D = ~2900
- 5B > 3C > 22C > 2C > 2B > TCL > 5B > j.B > j.C > jc j.D = ~3800
- 3C > 22C > 2C > 2B > TCL > 5B > j.B > j.C > jc j.D = 3264
- 5A > 5B > 2C > 5B > TC > 5A > j.A > j.B > j.C > jc j.D = ~2700
- UW 5A > 5B > 2C > 2B > TC > 236D > (>5C)*3 >  > 6C >  > j.C > jc j.D = 3603
- 5B > 2C > 2B > TCL > 5B > j.B > j.C > jc j.D = 3578
- UW 5B > 2C > 2B > TCL > 236D > (>5C)*4 > 6A > 3C > 5D = 4228
- UW 6D > 5B > 2C > 2B > TCL > 5B > j.B > j.C > jc j.D = 4254
- (5A) > 5A > 5B > 2C > 2B > TCL > 5B > BHS = 3779
- 5B > 5BB > TCL > RC > 5B > 2C > 5B > j.B > j.C > jc j.D = 3742
- UW 6D > 5B > sj.C > j.D > RC > j.C > 214D > 5A > TC > 236D > (>5C)*4 > 6A > 3C > 5D = 5001
- UW 5A > 5B > TCL > RC > (>5C)*4 > 6A > 3C > BHS = ~5200
- UW 6D > 5B > sj.C > j.D > RC > j.C > 214D > 5A > TC > 236D > (>5C)*4 > 6A > 3C > 3D > BHS = 6275
- For Match Videos please visit this thread:
|Azrael Combos [By: tkrn]|
|Azrael Combos [By: ぶーちゃん (Bu-chan)]|
|Azrael Combos [By: けーご (Ke-Go)]|
|Azrael Combos (Revisited) [By: けーご (Ke-Go)]|
|Azrael 5B OverDrive Combos [By: Q]|
|Azrael Combos (Part 1) [By: 藤＠残心失敗 (Fuji)]|
|Azrael Combos (Part 2) [By: 藤＠残心失敗 (Fuji)]|