Making the Peacemaker more useful

It’s been discussed several times that Aganos’ Instinct is lacking, but that’s not the point of this topic. Rather than discussing how it could be changed, I want to talk about the club. I think there’s a major issue with the club in general that doesn’t really make sense and could be improved.

You can get a club two different ways:

  1. Instinct
  2. Grabbing a wall behind you

The issue with this is the club itself is balanced around his instinct, which is a “cheap” way to get it, whereas grabbing a wall behind you is very expensive. When you do the latter, the club has the exact same usefulness as any individual club that you get about 8 times in instinct, but has a much greater cost. To get a club in this manner, you have to suffer the animations of placing a wall then grabbing it, as well as using a hit of armor. You can equate this to a price of about two knockdowns and a chunk (3 knockdowns if you include grabbing a chunk in the first place).

Nevertheless, you still lose it after getting hit, or doing one target combo, or getting one hit confirm, or doing one special move. For comparison, Thunder has a non-instinct version of his instinct power-up, but it only costs him one knockdown to obtain and he doesn’t lose it so easily.

To rectify this, I would make the club better to the point where it’s worth its high price tag in neutral and more terrifying when in instinct. Here are some ways I’d do that:

1. Give it higher priority.

Let’s say you’re zoning out Orchid at full-screen and you have a club. She does a slide, and you react to hit her with the Cr. HP sweep. The hitboxes collide, and since her slide is a special and the club is a normal, you lose the trade and you lose your club. That doesn’t make sense to me. I’m getting hit because of my long reach, which is why I want the club in the first place. With its price tag, I think it should be able to stuff specials from full-screen. Sure, Glacius also has this problem with his full-screen kicks, but doing jump kicks has no cost for him.

2. Have the normals destroy projectiles like the thrown version.

Similar reasoning to number 1. Also, you lose your projectile-destroying flick when you have a club, so this is to combat that. Sure, you could throw it, but then you immediately lose your full-screen threat that you worked so hard to get.

  1. Placing a wall with club in hand consumes the club, not a chunk AND the club.

Very often the opponent runs away when instinct hits. Your options are then to very slowly jump across the screen to run them down, or place a wall behind them. The former could take half of your instinct time, while the latter could do the same if you don’t have chunks. With this buff, the opponent is forced to be with his/her back against the wall (hehe), or have Aganos stack multiple walls behind them if they try to move forward. While in instinct, you would see a lot more of what Aganos is billed as: a giant that wants you to feel claustrophobic.

Outside of instinct, a wall that has no use behind you could be picked up and placed behind your opponent. The new wall could have the same number of remaining hit points that your club had to balance it.

4. Give him an invulnerable reversal that consumes the club.

I know this is a big one, but I think it could be made within reason. I’ve made the argument several times that Aganos’ instinct makes his defense worse (not to mention it’s entirely involuntary). With a club in hand, you can’t do your fast anti-air, your damaging anti-air, your projectile flick, or your fast overhead (which can also be a situational anti-air). If you read a jump-in and instinct cancel, you can’t anti-air unless you have meter. I think giving him an invulnerable reversal could remedy this, as well as give him the ability to get out of frame-traps. It should be non-mobile, have a long startup, and be horribly unsafe, like Kan-Ra’s reversal. Outside of instinct, he’s still not likely to have access to it (unlike Kan-Ra), and his instinct would make his worst attribute better (which most instincts in the game do).

5. He doesn’t lose the club when hit

With your new reversal, you don’t have much of a reason to NOT have a club in hand (in its current state, you have plenty of reasons if you’re knocked down), and your 2 knockdowns and 1 chunk don’t go to waste after 1 button by your opponent.

OR instead of buffing the club, you could just make it easier to obtain in neutral, but that’s no fun to talk about.

Ok, there we go. Back to my original nickname after some getting used to the new forums. Anyway! In addition to the changes you posit:
-Hits with the club should reflect projectiles if timed right, not just cancel them out. We’re already halfway there with the windup, so why not complete the idea of making it a bat?
-More moves with the club in general. As you mentioned, Aganos players lose plenty when they’ve the club in hand, and some of the ground lost needs to be gotten back.

Mmmm, nothing very dramatic, but what about this:

If you grab a chunk while holding the peacemaker, you earn 2 chunks instead of one?

Maybe with more changes, but what do you think about this one?

I think there are charcters with way worse instincts. Aganos doesnt really need this buff. Often i can chunk up a lot and still do 30-40% damage without combos during instinct.

I agree with #1 but the rest seem ridiculous and unnecessary. I think that obtaining the peace maker should only require 1 knockdown. Aganos ripping the club out of the ground by hitting all 3 kicks, but that’s it. I spent a day in training mode finding out different ways to use the club other that just throwing it and there are some crazy good things you can do with it. Let’s say an opener glitch that uses 1 bar and let’s Aganos do nothing but manuals. Or damaging unbreakables, or even tricky strings that don’t exist without the club. Aganos is extremely good in almost every way, people just need to start figuring these tools out and unlocking Aganos’s full potential.

I thought about it, but I think destroying them is sufficient. What if they’re air projectiles? Do they reflect back up in the same direction (which I guarantee would look awkward with HP, which moves downwards)? Reflecting back down to the ground doesn’t help either.

What if it’s Maya’s air projectile? It’s not affected by gravity, so it would be flying forever if it misses on the return flight… though I’m not sure it would miss.

I do think it’s kinda surprising that no one has a reflect move yet. Fulgore had one in KI 1. Maybe someone will get it in Season 3.

That’s really just an Instinct buff, though. It doesn’t make the club more worth pursuing out of Instinct since you still have to spend a chunk to get it.

It has potential, but I think the club would still need to hit harder in some way to really balance the costs/benefits for the Instinct clubs and the non-Instinct clubs.

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Peacemaker buffs:

-Give him access to some of his normals by command. If you press forward+HP, you do the club-less HP, and even don’t lose the pacemaker, cause you don’t use the hand that it’s holding it.
-Chunking when holding peacemaker gives you two chunks, also it’s faster than getting a chunk from the ground
-During instinct, you gain one chunk every time you regenerate the peacemaker
-Peacemaker has hitbox, but not hurtbox
-Aganos doesn’t lose the pacemaker when hit or knocked, only if he loses his first life bar.
-Pulverize doesn’t destroy the peacemaker, and improves his upwards hitbox, giving it some anti-air potential

Some ideas, maybe all of them would be OP, but maybe some of them are compatibles.

I think you’re all crazy.
Aganos has an extremely threatening instinct, with single hits doing 10-15% at near full screen AND it’s a 50/50. He can barely be touched while in instinct!
Zergkiller is a great example to show the capabilities of aganos… He’s downright scary to approach.
I’m not trying to bash your opinions, but maybe if you really look at aganos on paper and realize the potential of his arsenal, you’d be less inclined to ask for buffs and more inclined to improve.

1: He has an aerial recapture for anyone who chooses to jump in on him, as well as 2 different ranges of anti-air normals. BOTH of which can be special cancelled into that superman punch (ruin?) which leads to a wall crash from a simple jump in.

  1. He has a throw invulnerable reversal, which with easy manuals, can be quick chunks.

  2. A full screen projectile invulnerable whiff punish which does amazing damage…

The one thing I will agree on, is the difficulty of getting a club without instinct… And my opinion is that he should absolutely be allowed to turn a chunk immediately into a club, by grabbing it from his chest.

Keep in mind this is just my opinions, and I wish you fellow aganos players all the best

You are right, Aganos is scary with the peacemaker… with space.

Aganos instinct gives him no tools or aid in the moment he needs most: when the enemy it’s at home, hitting you hard, and without scape. I would like to see an improvement in Aganos defense in short distance with the peacemaker.

I wouldn’t care because, you know, it’s a long range weapon and all that, but it’s his instinct, so you probably will have it when cornered, assaulted, and chunkless

I actually like the OP’s suggestions. Peacemaker is nowhere near useful enough to expend the time and energy to get it in neutral, so a lot of these suggestions are actually pretty cool I think. A suped-up peacemaker when obtained “the long way” would be an interesting mechanic.

I’m good on everyone else’s suggestions though - Aganos is already very good if you’re willing to put in the work with him, and some of these suggestions would just make him devastating.

Aganos’s peacemaker is useful, but is it THAT useful? He has to sacrifice a LOT to get one (outside instinct), and he gets a one-time-use good projectile that does somewhere in the neighborhood of 8% damage (and not a lot of chip), or he gets a couple swings with it that might do some damage from pretty far range. Okay, neat I guess. And forward throw is now untechable. I guess that’s okay.

He sacrifices so much to get it, though; he loses all his punch normals (his only anti-airs, already a weakness for him), he can’t use special moves, he can’t grab chunks, and he can’t get hit.

In instinct, I don’t think it’s much better. He gets the club without having to spend chunks, but… when can he activate it? The only really useful thing is after Ruin on block, I think… he can’t use it on wakeup reliably, and if he uses it when you’re full screen, then it’s pretty ineffective unless you have the life lead and time is ticking down. There isn’t enough of a threat, especially compared to every other instinct in the game. You can easily just block it out, and the (rare) worst case you take like 30-40% life, maybe. What’s the worst case for other instincts in the game? Your whole life bar and then some?

It just doesn’t pass the smell test for me in a game like KI with so many strong tools.

Some of the OP’s suggestions are fairly reasonable (not all the buffs combined, but I don’t think he was suggesting that). But in reality I think more than just the peacemaker for Aganos needs a slight revisit. I like that Aganos struggles against pressure, that’s fine (although it really sucks in KI because offense is so good), but his instinct making him worse defensively and not really that much stronger offensively is kinda sucky for him.

In general, the main reason Aganos is such a struggle character is because perfect play is absolutely required for him to have a chance (perfect play Aganos is pretty good). But if you’re gonna play perfectly, other characters do just as well, and they also do better without perfect play. If they want to make Aganos a bit better, I think they have to lighten the amount of perfect play required to land hits and defend yourself, and part of that might be adjustments to peacemaker.


Ok, you’re right about stuff that he has… but you’re not addressing what’s one of the core issues that I’m talking about in the first place, which is the fact that he loses capabilities when he has a club. Once you go into Instinct, those great anti-airs you mention are now gone, along with the fastest overhead in the game (that you can actually combo out of). Instead, you get a slower hard knockdown overhead that you can’t use to follow up with anything, other than another 50/50 hard knockdown, in the best case scenario.

Yes, Instinct is great at long range, but I don’t need Instinct to be good at long range or to damage my opponent. I already have great long range normals and I routinely get 30% off of a single anti-air when I’m on offense.

Getting clubs for just 1 unsafe animation is a possibility… but I’d rather have a harder way to get a really good thing along with Instinct really being a game changer, as opposed to two easy ways to get something that can be thrown like candy at a parade during Instinct.

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I think #1 is the least that could be done. If I don’t have #4, I don’t want #5, but together they would solve the loss in defense. #3 is an exciting thing for Instinct that could either make it a game changer or could be broken for the matchups against more linear characters.

Naturally, talking about one aspect of his game turns into an evaluation of the whole character, but that’s fine, since I think there’s some good discussion here.

The best example: the Sabrewulf matchup, which is a good one, by comparison. On an arbitrary number scale, I’d say it starts as +2 for Aganos in neutral, and he can get it up to about a +4 when on a roll. But once you get your combo broken, or lose a chunk without replacing, or make one wrong read and get hit by a Shadow move… it’s instantly +10 for Sabrewulf with his high damage and make-everything-safe Instinct - that is, until you can tech a throw or make a great read using Aganos’ Rock/Paper/Scissors wakeups or a Shadow Counter. Of course, Instinct won’t help you here.

I brought up Instinct in the first place because it’s probably the easiest way to help patch up imperfect play. You can get punished for mistakes, but then if you get a Rocksplosion (like Sandsplosion) during Instinct, then you have more of a chance to set yourself back up to your impenetrable (but not really) state.

Resources are really good in KI, too… and all other resource characters get them for free twice a match; meanwhile, Aganos’ worst attribute (speed) is made worse as he obtains his resource. As was evident in previous IG streams, they designed him cautiously, which contradicts the design philosophy used for other characters, which was something like: “If given the choice, we’d rather opt to make the character too strong so we know exactly what’s too good with them and then tone it down rather than too weak and then not know exactly how to improve him/her/it.”

It’s understandable, because an armored character that is too good could really take the game away from its intended combo-centric mechanics and make the game a lot less fun to watch/play.

Yeah, I don’t blame them for being cautious with Aganos. I think when they buffed him in the next patch, they actually thought they were giving him stuff that could be too strong down the line, so they didn’t go any further.

The main problem with giving him a reversal while holding the club is that he actually doesn’t build instinct clubs while he is blocking or getting hit. So… not counting the 1st frame after instinct activation, you actually can’t reversal, ever. If they change it so that he gets to keep his club after getting hit (probably a huge change for animators, so I don’t foresee this happening), you get one reversal and if you’re wrong, you don’t get another one, probably for the rest of instinct. So, I don’t think your point #4 is actually all that strong, really. It really just gives him a way to get out of pressure right after instinct activation and probably not much more.

His instinct in general I just find fairly underwhelming… probably a combination of the fact that Peacemaker is only so-so (and I often don’t even want it), and the fact that, when full screen, I kind of just find myself throwing Peacemakers and chunking as a default strategy, because I would rather have the chunks than take a few swings with the club. So… instinct turns into “I got 2 (maybe 3) free chunks”. That’s a… pretty terrible instinct when you look at every other character in the game, because you can lose all those chunks immediately after just one pseudo-mistake anywhere in the match, and you’re left with the worst of the worst as far as defense goes. Even when chunks are used at their peak efficiency, I don’t think they’re SO good that “get 3 chunks over 15 seconds” is a valuable instinct mode. Plus, that description is only situational! Some instincts you won’t be able to build any chunks at all because you used it on defense or you got hit or whatever. It’s not like Spinal who will end up with 5 skulls for later use even if he plays his instinct terribly.

I dunno. I definitely don’t think Aganos should regenerate chunks automatically during instinct or anything like that. I think the main problem with Aganos is that his chunks are good but not SO good that they make up with being the worst in the game at so many things without them. And it’s also a resource that hurts you; having 4 chunks makes all your moves super slow (so standard punishes don’t work anymore) and you can’t jump or walk at all, and yet you can still lose it all to one random shadow fireball because somebody guessed you might try to press a button and if they’re wrong, whatever.

It’s a tough character to fix.

Adjustments to Instinct have been discussed before, and the solution that I liked best was two-fold.

  1. At the very least, make the club like Orchid’s Firecats, as in you only get additional ones if you press HP+HK. Then you no longer have to play ‘beat the clock’ if you’re trying to time a meaty, anti-air, or flick.
  2. Increase the speed of the chunk grab when in Instinct. This is a quality of life buff that could be made too good, then reduced accordingly like Sabrewulf’s damage buff in Instinct.

Both @LeoFerreis and @Infilament are pointing really good points. I want to share with you my ideas.

Aganos: problems and solutions:

1-Slower when chunked.
Solutions(One or more to discuss):
-Decrease the speed penalty(Example, 4 chunks=Actual 2 chunks).
-Increase damage in proportion. It’s heavier, a 4 chunks HP should hurt A LOT. Maybe only in normals, only out of combo, it’s debatable, but if you get slower, you should make any hit count.

2-Peacemaker needs to be more useful.
Solutions(One or more to discuss):
-The OP has pointed really good ideas. Not much to say here

3-Extremely weak to throw baits. A cornered, chunk less Aganos has two options, expect a throw, or wait for a jump. And you get punished very hard if you fail in this, harder than anybody. Given his size, it’s hardly addressable.
Solutions(One or more to discuss):
-Give him a reversal. Maybe game-breaking
-Give him a good shadow reversal(All actual shadow moves has at least a mayor flaw)
-Make Aganos harder to throw. Throwing Aganos get’s a bigger tech window. Aganos could break a throw attempt more easily, but not by pure reaction. Surely game breaking, it adress one of the character’s weakness by design.

4-In some match ups, chunk up it’s really hard.
Solutions(One or more to discuss):
-Increase re-chunk speed
-Give him new methods of getting chunks

5-His instinct doesn’t address his weakness
Solutions(One or more to discuss):
-Upon activation, Aganos gets two chunks(basically he returns to the starting point of the match)
-Upon activation, Aganos gets one chunk and regenerates them(Maybe game breaking)
-During instinct, walls and proyectiles doesn’t use chunks as ammunition. Maybe game breaking(spam M payload assault)
-During instinct, some of his moves are enhanced(Like Riptor’s instinct). Pulverize may have some invincibility on wake up, for example

These are some ideas i just had.

Many of them makes Aganos very overpowered, so i would like to know your opinion about them, to maybe get to a better vision of what does Aganos needs

Not enough space to talk about each of those points, so I’ll address a few:

  1. I was never a huge fan of Aganos becoming so terribly slow with 4 chunks. I understand the concept, but in practice it’s just SO devastating to his game, and I don’t think having 4 chunks is that much more unstoppable than, say, 2 chunks. It messes with his frame data, makes his jumps annoying, and he still loses it all to a single shadow projectile anyway, which is harder to avoid than you might think because his normals are all so slow. I want to say they should lose the speed penalty entirely, but… at the very least they should probably make Aganos no slower than his current 2-chunk speed at max chunks.

  2. I’m okay with Aganos being weak to throws… he’s not the only one (Hisako is also pretty weak to throws). Like I’ve said before, I’m okay with a chunkless Aganos being at the mercy of other people. I just think they should make it slightly easier to stay chunked or slightly harder for the opponent to get in that situation somehow; i.e., they should lessen the burden on needing to play Aganos perfectly or else lose almost immediately, but not entirely remove that burden.

  3. I’m also okay with Aganos struggling to chunk in certain matchups because of easy punishes in neutral on reaction. That’s a matchup thing and as long as Aganos has other benefits in that matchup and it’s not terribly lopsided, it’s okay. Having said that…

  4. I think Aganos needs a few easier ways to chunk. Back throw’s hard knockdown should last long enough for him to chunk, IMO (yes, it’s pretty good because he stays close after back throw, unlike forward throw which sends the guy away, but because Aganos is so weak to throws I’m okay with this… the offense should have something to fear if they lose the throw mixup, right?). Sweep’s hard knockdown should last just a hair longer so chunking doesn’t get punished for free by half the cast. Maybe the chunking animation could be 15-20% faster or something, I would have to think through the ramifications of that, but off the top of my head I’m not too bothered with it because chunking is so hard (and would remain hard even with the speed increase).

  5. Would like to see the shadow counter version of shadow ND recapture on the last hit like the neutral version (this always seemed like a bug to me). This would help him in the Riptor match and also fix that goofiness with him being unable to shadow counter Sabrewulf’s shadow jumping slash on the ground. It wouldn’t influence most matchups.

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The weirdest thing about Aganos is how he was seemingly designed as a closer-range character but wound but being zoning. I mean, maybe I’m reading into the design ideas wrong, but considering he gains armor, has very unique abilities that almost guarantee closer quarters, has mechanics centered around the damage gained from close range moves and their interaction with the aforementioned closer quarter, and has an instinct which is ostensibly focused on a melee weapon…And then he keeps needing to play a constant zoning game to get any resources.

That, to me, seems the biggest issue. He needs something close range which can directly link into getting chunks even when up close, kinda how Spinal does it…but Spinal has ways to get skulls beyond his resource ender. Landing particular manuals, perhaps? I don’t know, and maybe that’s an inelegant way of going about it in lieu of the stuff that Infil named. But with easier chunks, it kinda buoys up all the other parts of his gameplan, including making the PM comparatively more worth it.

As for my earlier idea of certain parts of PM being a reflector, well, I’d go with reflecting them at the same angle of approach. It might look a bit weird, and perhaps some of the more “abnormal” projectiles would just be affected like they are now, but I think it would help his approach that much more with the club out.

I think a common misconception on the character is that he is supposed to be played up close, just because he’s big and hulking. He isn’t. The range on his normals and his grab bely that notion quite handily.

Aganos isn’t meant to be played up close (or far for that matter) - he’s meant to be played at the range of his footsie game, which is more midrange than anything else. Aganos can play far decently due to distance granting him chunks, but in reality he’s best when he’s at that sweet spot where his buttons and throws all hit, and none of yours do. Then he can just soak the hit of whatever you do to get in and start his pressure.

People set themselves up for failure when they come into the character thinking “juggernaut” or “grappler” just because he’s big.

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