Can we get an option to not require diagonal motions for special move input?

Whenever I show the game to new players one of the most frequent complaints I get is how hard some special move motions are for them to perform. The reason for this is that diagonal motions are required for special moves. What I mean by this is that if you want to do Jago’s Laser Sword (DB+P) you have to do D>DB>B + Punch. You can’t do D>B + Punch. This makes it especially hard when using the dpad where the diagonals are a little hard to reach.

Now I know this doesn’t affect most players, and we have combo assist in the game npw which helps out new users, but having the option where special move motions can be performed without the diagonal input would help out a lot. Mortal Kombat X allows this via a Controller setting (Input Shortcuts) and it makes things a lot easier.

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So, like, Marvel VS Capcom’s (I think it was MvC) simplified special moves where you kinda just press a direction and then a button?

Isn’t that kinda cheap?
One thing is to have the Combo Assist, another is to make all moves so simplified that there’s absolutely no challenge in playing the game.

Tell your friends that a bit of practise goes a long way. Take them into training mode and help them with the motions, teach them how to play the game.

You see I did that right, but then they decided to quit when it got to hard. One of the things that’s forgiving to fighting games today is accessibility. The button commands don’t come inherent.

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This game already has super lenient inputs and shortcuts. Example: You can hit df, df and it’ll count it as a dp motion.

Accessibility shouldn’t compromise the gameplay though. And simplifying the special moves kinda does that.

Like I said, it is different with Combo Assist, because combos aren’t supposed to be tough to do, as the Combo/Counter Breakers are what is supposed to be the mind game of combos. However, special moves have certain attributes that are important for the gameplay, so to simplify them would be to compromise the gameplay.

And if your friends aren’t willing to practise to learn how to use them, then they are simply not invested enough. And really, to learn a few special moves does not mean you need to be so invested as a competitive player.


It’s not about just pressing a direction and a button for the Special move, it’s just about removing the diagonal requirement. You still have to press Down and then Forward then the attack button, you just don’t have to also plug in a diagonal direction in there between the Down and the Forward. MKX does this and it in no way gives anyone an advantage, it just makes it easier for some people who have a harder time with motions.

There are already characters in this game that works like that, such as Sabrewulf.
I’m no good at playing charge-characters, like M. Bison in Street Fighter, so I play other characters who aren’t charge-characters.

I don’t mean to sound rude, but the way I see it: if you can’t play a character, then pick someone else you can play as.

I asked this very same question months ago - why can’t we have inputs like the MK series has with :arrow_down::arrow_right: and :arrow_down::arrow_left: motions instead of the QCF and QCB, (or :arrow_down::arrow_lower_right::arrow_right: / :arrow_down::arrow_lower_left::arrow_left:) motions?

…and you know what the devs themselves told me?


That’s right! If you go into practice mode, it is indeed possible - I know, because I tried it myself after they told me this. So, yes, you can press :arrow_down::arrow_right: or :arrow_down::arrow_left: instead of the QCF or QCB motions, respectively. The thing, however, is that you have to be super fast to pull it off. So much so, that it’s almost easier to the :arrow_down::arrow_lower_right::arrow_right: and :arrow_down::arrow_lower_left::arrow_left: motions instead. In the end, I find it’s simply best to rest your left thumb either on the left joystick where you can easily do the rotations as above or you can rest it on the middle of your d-pad and simply practice doing diagonal motions from 1 spot to the other. So, on the d-pad, you’d move your thumb from the down direction and then just slide your thumb diagonally until it hits the forward direction on the d-pad. A QCF motion on the d-pad should look something like this: :arrow_upper_right:, assuming the end of the arrow is down on the d-pad and the front of the arrow is foward on the d-pad. A QCB motion on the d-pad should look something like this: :arrow_upper_left:, assuming the back of the arrow is down on the d-pad and the fron of the arrow is backward on the d-pad (both the aformentioned motions are assuming you’re standing on the left and facing right, which is the default for 1st player).

For me, a DP motion on the d-pad is the hardest, but if you break it down, it’s basically just the same slide motion or rotation as before, but you start with pressing :arrow_right: 1st and then doing the down-to-forward slide or QCF rotation very quickly after, so what you’re actually doing is this: :arrow_right:-:arrow_down::arrow_lower_right::arrow_right:.

I’ve also discovered that most characters with in-air-capable QCF or QCB special moves can do them quickly by barely jumping off of the ground. Now, you can do this normally by jumping and then putting in the QCF/QCB motions, but it will almost always be towards the high point of the jump. If you want to do the special move at a more ambiguous and harder to avoid lower height, then you simply do the QCF/QCB rotation by extending it just a bit, so instead of the typical :arrow_down::arrow_lower_right::arrow_right: motion you would do for example, you would instead do a :arrow_down::arrow_lower_right::arrow_right::arrow_upper_right: motion.

I hope this all helps! :wink:


Ah that’s neat, I’ll give it a try later to see how fast the D,F input has to be done to get special move to come out. It’s a shame it’s so strict though, as you said it kind of defeats the purpose of the feature :frowning:

And yeah I usually recommend they either use the stick or if they’re using the D-pad to stick their thumb in the middle to have better chances of getting diagonal motions. Most of them stick to the edges of the D-pad and so completely miss the diagonal and end up with the Special move motion not registering consistently.

While it is indeed a shame, I simply think it has to do with how fast the game itself is. KI is much faster paced than many other fighting games, and that’s what actually makes it hard to do in the 1st place, but it has to be that fast to help make the combo system (and your thumbs) actually work. :slight_smile:

I personally think that NO ONE should use the D-pad. it just seems too lame and difficult compared to the stick.

But for inclusive-ness-es sake, i dont see why not. A D-pad friendly feature could only help, right?

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D-pad vs analog is mostly a preference thing. If you grew up playing old fighters on console, hitting quarter circle motions or shoryus can feel quite a bit more natural than the same motion on an analog stick. D-pad also doesn’t have to “reset” to neutral in between actions, so things like dashing are quite a bit faster on d-pad than they are on either an analog or a fight stick. On a fight stick you can add tension to the joystick to offset this somewhat, but I’ve found that for pure movement purposes, a d-pad will still generally be a touch faster.

@TheFawz - I actually recommend turning on input display in Training to check your d-pad inputs. X1 controllers are interesting in that some of them seem to have weirdly touchy diagonal inputs in one direction or the other. In general I’ve always found the X1 pad to be very responsive (and played KI on pad for a year), but I’ve also gone over friends’ houses and found that even I couldn’t consistently hit fireballs on one side of the screen. A lot of times I’ve found that for whatever reason, those friend’s d-pads simply didn’t respond unless you mashed the diagonal. In general you should just be able to slide your thumb loosely from down to forward or whatever, but on a controller like that you have to be super intentional with the input to get it to come out. Check to see if your controller is one of those.

Yeah we actually play at work and have a whole bunch of controllers and notice that not all of them are as responsive as others, but it’s still not that much of a disparity. It is a lot worse on KI compared to other fighting games we play though. I updated the firmware on the controllers but it didn’t change much. The controller analogue stick works pretty perfectly though, it’s mostly with the D-pad (since it’s harder to get a diagonal when rolling from Down to Forward/Back)

no I understand, i was just saying what people in that situation would say. I’m fine with how fighting games require inputs to do certain moves.

Having messed around with input display, I get the impression that the “Mortal Kombat quarter-circles” that @TempusChaoti once said were in the game are actually not a thing.

That said, the idea that MK controls are “simpler” than quarter-circles always bewildered me – it seemed that rolling your thumb from down to left/right was easier than pressing down, lifting your thumb off the D-pad, then pressing left/right – until it struck me that people probably want quarter-circles to still work under MK controls, too. So iuno, I guess I see a little bit of benefit. I’d still have a hard time keeping a straight face whilst calling MK’s controls “simple” or “accessible”, at least certainly not whilst calling the quarter-circles “hard”.

The bit about diagonals failing on some XBOne D-pads I can acknowledge, though. I had to send a controller in for warranty over a faulty diagonal.

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I think when it goes into dragon punch terrirory that ppl get mad.

I’m in no way saying that MK’s controls are simpler than KI (there’s some dumb timing sensitive moves in there, and command grab motions tend to be a pain), but when it strictly comes to DF/DB motions MK has it easier with the use of the ‘input shortcuts’ controller option. All it does is make it optional to have the diagonal motion for DF/DB moves. You can do D>F OR D>DF>F to get the move, while KI doesn’t allow that freedom of choice (or if it does like @TempusChaoti said then it’s super strict)

I guess I really need to look at combo assist then. Seems like it maybe helpful for dumb players like me.

The “Input Shortcut” option in MK is actually somewhat separate from its “no diagonals” control implementation (which is there whether you have Input Shortcuts turned on or not)

MK’s input shortcuts are an odd beast. They aren’t really related to being able to DF instead of QCF, but more so allow something like a diagonal (D+F) to count for both a straight D and F. Basically allows you to start or end a motion at a earlier/later point. Street Fighter V actually has this (easy way to make Zangief’s grounded CG doable) even though it does not have “no diagonal” input style like MK.

One thing to keep in mind is Mortal Kombat has a block button and Killer Instinct is back-to-block. So you will probably find some nasty unintended consequences as a result of this.

For example with Kotal if you crouch block and then do his F1, you need to hold D+F instead of D when crouch blocking or you will get his air grab (DF1)

In Mortal Kombat you can do this since holding Down+ Forward while crouching does not stop you from also blocking. In Killer Instinct you have to hold down+back so you’ll get a ton of accidental QCF’s and BF’s coming out of block.

In Injustice this was a pretty big problem because it defaulted MK style inputs but it was also B2B. It drove me crazy for 2 years haha.

I would agree this may be a nice control option, but I doubt you will find it too useful once you run into getting random moves :stuck_out_tongue:

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I can see how it would have a couple of unintended effects where you don’t get the moves you want, similar to negative edge. But so long as it’s a togglable option that’s on by default I think it would be helpful, mostly for people who specifically struggle with that style of input.

Thanks for the detailed breakdown though :wink: