What do the two terms "option select" and "hit confirm" mean in the context of Street Fighter IV? Do they carry on to other fighting games?
Option Select refers to combinations of buttons that will result in a different action depending on what the other player is doing. One example is crouching and pressing light kick and light punch, which would perform a throw if you were standing. If the other player tries to throw you while doing this then you will tech the throw but otherwise you will perform a crouching light kick. I don't really know of any other examples or if it is used outside of SF4 but I think it could be.
Hit Confirm is a pretty common fighting game term and relates to combo's where you have time to confirm that you have hit someone with the first attack before continuing with the combo or stopping if it is blocked/misses. This is kind of the opposite to moves which can be cancelled where you will pretty much have to instantaneously perform the next move in the combo for it to work.
Option Select means you have 2 alternatives. For example you play Ryu and jump towards Akuma. During your jump you input hard kick and as it hits you input the Tatsu action. Now two things can happen, depending on what your opponent does:
- opponent is hit / blocks your hard kick -> tatsu is not executed
- opponent evades hard kick -> tatsu executes immediately
Your opponent has fewer options if he does not punish your jump:
- he blocks -> you can input a block string
- he backdashes -> tatsu will hit him
- he teleports -> tatsu will hit him
His best move is to block your jump and eat the block string or if he is fast enough he can punish your with an anti air.
Good players input option selects all the time to punish bad players.
You can input nearly every option select if you are fast enough. So you can insert jumping hard kick option select ultra or crouching light punch option select sweep.
AirRyu has very good comparison: Think of it as a rock paper scissors game. But instead of choosing only one you choose two at the same time. You can select paper and scissors or rock and paper. It is not all mighty as you cannot select all at once but you improve your odds.