Kim Wu punish theory

Envision your opponent has whiffed a counter breaker in your face and you’re playing Kim Wu. You now have, in gaming terms, forever and a day to slap them with your strongest suite of moves to maximize your opportunity to catch them unguarded. Typically, the standard response for her would be st HP into Shadow Firecracker, which does a healthy 15% damage upfront before your opponent could break anything. In actuality, her actual strongest option would be st HP into Shadow Dragon Kick which does 25% damage upfront. There are several clear as day drawbacks though. Without a dragon, it offers no follow ups. It’s a soft knockdown, and you’d need a second bar and second dragon to attempt a cashout from the juggle. There’s good reason(s) from the way that Kim is built that this is not the way to go. This is where the theory comes in.

I’ve been toying with the idea more and more of this sequence of normal > Shadow Dragon Kick > dragon cancel > Dragon Sweep. Since i’m not tying this to any particular normal, the damage can range from 19-25% depending on what you lead with before they could attempt to break. The more clear benefit, in my opinion, is that you put your opponent into the longest hard knockdown Kim can offer at point blank range. You, again, get a good amount of time to setup for the next wakeup.

Where would you use this though? All theory (haven’t taken this to exhibition/ranked yet), but i don’t see one good reason to not use this in any matchup where you feel you can control the neutral and dominate the pace. But only in those matchups (or players, i suppose) where you have that confidence. Otherwise, you may be limiting yourself on how you capitalize. Everyone is fully aware of how much damage Shadow Dragon Kick does as an ender. Not everyone is fully aware of how much raw and potential damage it does as an opener, which leads to…

Why would you use this? An overall better damage swing. The sequence i noted above will leave you with 20.x of PD, which is enough to have your next combo start out at level 3 after an opener. You could open your opponent up with a one-chance combo and have a level 4 ender at the ready immediately. In the best case scenario, two combos can wipe 81% off your opponent’s life bar. The more realistic scenario would probably be damage swings that start and 50% and only get higher.

Like a lot of things, this is wholly dependent on having the dragon to cancel with. And hitting the sweep after the cancel doesn’t require any real timings to hit. It’s pretty easy to pull off. Question i have is more, would you want to pull this off. Since i haven’t run this out in the wild, i was curious what other players’ thoughts might be to this. Sure, it’s a interesting bit of tech, but i’m more interested in if you think this would be a viable ‘alternate’ punishment route for Kim. Please offer your thoughts.

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What if they break the dragon sweep (since it will be pretty telegraphed)? There’s really no other normal you can use as a mixup here to make the cost of a dragon + a bar worth it, no? And you’ll get soft knockdown’d off the breaker because they’ll be in the air, so it’s kind of the worst case breaker too.

There’s certainly that possibility. If they break, you’re looking at a neutral reset having done between 18-25% damage. From a damage perspective, if i’m going to get broken, this would be the way to go everytime, but the cost is very high. At a higher level, most players are going to know that unless you start juggles with SDK with two bars (or can get to a second bar within the juggle), Kim cannot cashout and the damage she applies wouldn’t get that high. Unless you know your opponent, you might be better off just letting the juggle rock waiting for that soft knockdown. This screws with that thought process.

Then again, there are players that just guess break at the first opportunity, too. Kinda s.o.l against this type of player if they guess right. In theory, this is the type of player going with a grounded normal to shadow would be the best route to deal with a opportunity to punish. Because of this, i really called this a theory more than a bit of tech or a new means to attack the opponent.

I guess I’m curious what the “guess” is then (if you don’t have a second bar). They should always “guess” heavy because no other normal leads to anything of value, right? Then it’s just a counter break or not chokepoint.

It’s an interesting idea because the prospect of getting level 3 white life + a bunch of upfront damage is always good, but the cost seems very high (dragon + bar + very obvious break point with no real mixup potential).

I think the idea is much more valuable if you omit the sweep entirely, tbh. You lose very little unbreakable damage and then you just dragon cancel so you can pressure their quick rise. You probably get roughly the same meaties and then you’re guaranteed to get the opportunity?

Hmm…you have a point there regarding just letting them drop. And yeah, i’d imagine the amount of time to setup afterwards might be slightly different, but probably generous all the same. No real reason to not consider this option as well, either.

If we’re just talking normals after the Shadow Dragon Kick, because of the distance, st HK is the reliable option, but she can do mediums that lead to just as much as st HK. But you have to time them pretty specifically. She has no light normal that will reach, so yes, at that particular point there’s little mixup.