I will prefice my post with this:
I’m not particularly excited by the idea of Shorchid, but since there’s a good chance she may become a reality, I might as well contribute to the conversation in a positive way.
Much like I did in my Eagle ideas thread, I’ll be focusing entirely on gameplay ideas rather than appearance or lore.
So, suppose Shorchid (or Nightshade or whatever they wind up calling her) actually becomes a thing. Not my optimal Season 4, but I can deal. So, how’s she actually going to play?
If Shadow Jago (and her status as a “reimagined character”) is any evidence, then it she’ll follow a “Like Orchid, but…” design philosophy. Shago is a nuttier, riskier version of the fundamental, balanced Jago. Orchid is a much more rushdown focused character, but she leans a little more towards Jago’s style than Sabrewulf or Riptor. Lots of safe stuff and plus frames, a full screen “COME HERE” sort of move, and a DP help round out her gameplan. So Shadow Orchid should keep some of her elements, but tiwst them into moves with vastly different utility, and maybe more of a focus on aggression.
Perhaps a character that excels in cross-ups, but unlike Shago or Sadira stays grounded while doing so. Furthermore, giving her a ton of low threats to make up for a reduced high low game. Shorchid would excel in “playing dirty”, always hitting below the belt, or getting ready to stab you in the back.
So we’ll start with some of her reimagined moves:
**“Panther”/Shadow Cat:**One of Orchid’s classic moves is the Firecat, which lives on in her Shadow moves. Well, we can make further use out of it in the shadow version, thanks to all that Shadow Energy. My primary idea for this move is to change it to act more like Surge Slide on Shago. So the Shadow version (and probably linker version, at the very least) acts as a teleport, sending her behind the opponent to cross them up before executing the move. This would be a cool hybridization of Shadow Plasmaport and Firecat.
If it maintains a basic slide version, perhaps making it a mid (because you’re a cat rather than a sliding…slider) but giving it extra frame advantage could help further differentiate it.
Each Knee Gone: A parody of Ihci Nii San. First two hits are faster, with the last one having a bit more delay. Light version still hits low, but Medium now acts as a teleporting cross up, sending Orchid behind the opponent. Heavy now acts as a launcher (possibly still unblockable if charged) which leads to more shenanigans.
Landmine/Airstrike: I’ve got a few ideas for how to modify her grenade into less of a standard pressure utility and more of a nutty bit of madness. The first is to replace it with an overhead airstrike, where Shorchid makes a mark on the opponent that is represented by a laser from on high. After a short period of time, a shell will strike the location. If hit, it sends the opponent flying into a juggle state. This would be her only non-jumping overhead.
The second idea is to use spider mines. Shadow Orchid could plant an explosive that gets…impatient. Eventually, if the opponent doesn’t trigger it right away, it will scurry over to blow up and launch them on hit. This would be yet another low.
Slam Jam: Her throw would be as normal, but could lead to a ground bounce, allowing for either extra knockdown time or a few juggles. That, or it could have a longer animation, where she snaps their necks or something, leading to more damaging throws by themselves.
These are a few of the ideas I’ve had so far.
I’ve also considered that her combo trait would be a shift from her Double Linker trait. Instead, it’d be a Double-Double: The ability to do any two auto doubles in a row. She may need the “only three AD’s” treatment for this to be fair, but we’ll wait and see.