Arbiter Gameplay Speculation Thread

Figure I’d preemptively make this thread here, and it can be moved when the Arbiter forum gets made up. Getting speculation and conversation going is what makes this forum great, so lets get some discussion going.
Be warned. There’s a lot of text to scroll through.
#So. The Arbiter is coming.
"If they came to hear me beg, they will be disappointed."
Unless there’s more info concrete gameplay or at least a trailer at the second part of KI World Cup, it is up to us speculative types to try and get a general idea of what the heck is going on. So let’s get some friendly speculation in here, shall we?

Obviously, like Rash, Arby’s move list will invariably borrow from the thing he could do in his hone turf (i.e. Halo).
Historically the Arbiter has used an energy sword (a weapon sacred to the Sanghelli elites) as his primary tool of destruction, hence his inclusion in a fighting game over other, more gun focused characters like Master Chief 117. However, this does not mean these are his only tools. Elites go into battle wearing an advanced combat armor that provides them with both regenerating energy shields and cloaking/adaptive camouflage. For more heavy duty engagements, they use plasma grenades that stick to any opponent (or ally) they’re thrown at, creating an almost certainly lethal explosion. In many situations (and bits of the trailer) the Arbiter we know has often fallen back on a “Covenant Carbine” a directed energy rifle designed for accurate mid-long range fire.
Note: For purpose of being streamlined, I’m not sure he’s going to keep the carbine, it I have an idea for possible uses.

Summarization of Gameplan based on History: In traditional Sanghelli society, the Arbiter was a Warrior Leader. When The Covenant was still a thing, the Arbiter was a role assigned to those who had failed the profits so irredeemably that the only way to pay for it was with their own blood. Either way, they fought in much the same way; leading by example, they attack ferociously with reckless abandon, showing little regard for their own safety. This spurs those around them into action, but most importantly it makes the Arbiter a VERY dangerous foe. They may not be incredibly safe, but using their immense size and strength (Elites are about 8 feet tall), advanced technology, and suicidal zealous rage they rush into the heat of combat and deal astonishing damage to both opponents bodies and their morale. However, traditional Arbiters obtained their status through cunning, and often have ways to force their opponents into uncomfortable situations.

Now, for his move-list/traits

-Sword Charge: In the Halo games swords are incredibly viable not only because of their huge damage, but because of the ever deceptive lunge the attack provides. This will be represented in a move similar to Fulgore’s Blade Dash (albeit with slightly shorter range) where Arby dashes forwards and thrusts his sword up through his opponent. A good opener and probably a wall-splat or damage ender. To make things interesting, it could have a sort of “perry” mechanic where if it would be stuffed with an attack of the same strength, it would instead bounce Arby off (similar to the sword duals in Halo)

-Steppin’ Razor (Uppercut): Essentially an anti-air sword charge that sends both opponents up into the air, but allows for some follow up at the cost of damage. Could be a damage or juggle ender.

-Plasma Grenade: These will act similar to Cinder’s grenades, with the primary difference being that they will explode after a set period of time rather than being manually detonated, and could deal more damage. A tool for some slight zoning to make opponents panic. However you cannot throw them often, and throwing them is unsafe up close. Could be a battery (maybe have a special meter like Aganks chunks for “grenade belt” or even damage ender.

-Active Camouflage: There’s a gold chance Arby might get the ever gimmicky Invisibility power up. He could use this to create some ambiguous set ups if the glowing sword doesn’t give away his position. Will probably be restricted to instinct mode, or part of a setup ender.

-Energy Shields: Equally spooky is the prospect that he might be able to use a regenerating shield to provide armor. This is less scary because of the heavy poke rule coming in S3, but still potentially hazardous. To balance it out, it won’t be able to generate if he’s taken damage recently, and since he will probably have a few unsafe moves he will often have to force himself into situations where he must choose between shield and getting in. It could also be undone if he goes invisible or uses certain attacks.

-Carbine: Now that Fulgore’s laser has been retooled, there’s a chance Arby might inherent a move similar to his old stuff. Using his rifle (with lots of start up to aim and probably reload recovery) he could fire beams in a straight line across the screen to zone a bit. Barely any damage though, and more unlikely to appear in game.

Potential Instinct Ideas:

-Cloaking: Arbiter can become invisible when out of combo or not actively attacking, but loses this whenever they push another button.

-Enhanced Grenades: More grenades available, higher damage, unblockable properties, etc.

RUNNING RIOT!: Arby becomes super grumpy, and begins doing terrifying attacks. His combos become more frightening, becoming easier to land, harder to block, and possibly dealing even more damage. Maybe a speed boost.

Overall, I have a feeling naming conventions should stick to Halo references, but as far as the actual moves go I want to see what YOU DUDES think he’ll be like.


Yeah I think you’re ideas are spot on. Wonder how they will make his cloak not gimmicky. I’ve never played a fighting game in which a cloak is useful. Also, he isn’t carrying any old plasma sword, that’s the prophets bane. I beleive in Halo 5 the sword itself gives you invisibility properties.

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I imagine the Retro Costume will feature a classic energy sword with its White-Blue shiny/glowy glory (fingers crossed that it comes with the classic “PFFSHHH” sound effect too), but knowing the sword carries on the invisibility properties is pretty neat.

How to make cloaking not gimicky… Hmm…

I’ve thought the smae about having Cinder Nades. The sword is obvious too. I liked reading it. I’m just so happy about this. I will probably main him.

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Use the plasma grenades for his grab, stick and kick.

Active camo for his instinct.

Maybe a shadow move where he fuel rod cannon’s your butt into oblivion.

Maybe throw a suicide grunt at you, that would be hilarious.

His throw could incorporate the sticky nade a la Spartan in DOA4. I think, if they were go give him active camo then maybe that’ll be his instinct perk?

I may very happy with Arbiters inclusion. I really didn’t want Joanna Dark (which name I kept seeing on here) and Arbiter has been a favourite of mine since Halo 2. C’mon Arby release date!

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I would just like for the needler to make an appearance in his gameplay in some form.

I think we’ll have different things: ranging from grenades, sword swinging, his projectile could involve his carbine and a whole-lotta things.


While cloaking works like a charm in the Halo games I don’t this will do any good in KI. Because here’s the problem:

if cloak isn’t good enough your enemy can still see you. No point in that. If your cloaked too good you are gonna lose track of where you are and you be whiffing your attacks before you know it.

Invisibility is a double edge sword that has no place in a fighting game. Just only for aesthetics.

Hey, he’s got 1 of those! :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

What if they made it so you become invisible to the enemy, but that you could still see yourself in some manner (perhaps with an outline or other indicator of sorts)? So, you’re invisible on his TV screen, but not yours. :wink:

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I don’t think that is how it works. because honestly your both looking at the same screen I don’t think it’s possible to make that happen all within the exact same manner like that technology wise.

In Halo’s case everyone’s pretty much just looking at the exact same thing and your invisible but because your in first person you always know where you are.

This will not work in KI for him at all. Now he can probably cloak during some special moves I guess which can be harder to gauge the distance etc.

@JEFFRON27 I agree cloaking in fighting games is pretty bad and I’ve yet to see it used in an interesting and useful way.

Maybe he can have a teleport that uses it? Disappears and reappears somewhere else.

I like the running riot instinct idea.

My thoughts for it would incorporate his mark of shame brand flaring up and being visible through his armour, to let you know it can be activated and then course through him when it is active.

This would make him far more the savage assaulter, rather than the noble warrior and leader of the Sanghelli that he is more commonly know to be, but think of him like in Halo 2, where he was alone in the library. This is what kind of situation he’d be in if not on his own stage.

I do picture him as more of a Sabrewulf with advanced technology and a sword anyway, despite his calm demeanour in talky cutscenes and his brooding guilt.

I do feel like he’ll end up being the first Shogun/Samurai, sword wielding fighter in the game that’ll have the extra advantage of a few high tech items.

I really hope they avoid using invisibility as a move for Arby. Cloaking has never worked well in fighting games. If Reptile hasn’t been able to make invisibility work during his MK career, than it is a flawed mechanic at its core.

I also doubt that Arby won’t use his Carbine, there would be no reason to see him reload it if he didn’t plan on using it. Perhaps it could work like a long range linker like Glacius can do, except instead of summoning ice from below, firing a barrage of carbine shots. doing light hits makes Arby advance towards his opponent while firing, medium hits have him stay where he is, while heavy hits have him back away from his opponent.

If Arby uses sticky nades they should work like a mix of Orchid and Cinders grenades. The grenades are set to blow on a fuse, regardless of whether or not they land on the opponent. If the grenade lands on the ground, then it emits a red ring radius like Orchids grenade before blowing up. Otherwise it sticks to the opponent until it blows up.

I like the idea of a sword lunge and sword uppercut.

Maybe his energy shield will be his gimmick, like every time he properly ends a combo, it charges his shield to a certain amount based the level of combo he last ended ie: end a level 2 combo = 2 hits of armor, level 4 combo = 4 hits of armor etc.

I do like the idea of his Instinct mark being his Brand glowing through his armor and the running riot idea seems good for his instinct

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Stage Ultra - multiple charging suicide grunts.


Or you knock them into the background where they’re swarmed by grunts in a big dog pile.
“Who give beat down? WE GIVE BEAT DOWN!”


2 ideas for the cloaking:

  1. as his taunt or parts of it
  2. as his combat trait, during combos he could use it to cover up his doubles or something
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That just screams broken right there - making them harder to break, sure, but impossible? Heck no!

You could still break them, just not see his animation. After all @SightlessKombat manages to break combos as well :wink:

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And have you tried playing the game blind? Trust me, it’s harder than you think.

Well of course it’s harder. That’s kinda the point. And he shouldn’t be able to do that for the whole combo. Maybe give him a linker that is easier to break and activates the cloak for the next double.
Besides, you can still go by the animation of your own character if you want to have something visible.

Actually it isn’t even that powerful if you think about it. Most people can’t react to light doubles anyway so it doesn’t matter if they are cloaked or not. That leaves you with a 50-50 chance on mediums and heavies. I might try and set up breaker training for those and test it blind later on. I will gladly admit if I’m wrong. I’m curious what @Infilament says about such a mechanic though.