Shadow lords not for everybody

I have given shadow lords mode a fair go. I appreciate all the work you guys have done. In general you do great work. Now onto the reason I wrote this. The mode isn’t anywhere near the story mode that street fighter 5 put out. That was an abomination sucked big time. Shadow lords is better than that. I just don’t like it so much. I don’t like the rpg elements aspect of it. Crafting anything or any of that foolishness. Again I don’t like Rpg games that’s why I don’t play them. I enjoyed the arcade mode/story mode of season 1-2 much better. I do play the CPU mode but I miss the individual story modes of the character. I miss that play through to unlock the mural. I prefer that much better. Most of my time playing is single player modes. I wish this was an option still. It’s my hope you either bring that back some how for season 3 for individual character stories or consider it in season 4 if there is a season 4 if not please consider releasing this mode please. I will be honest I have have cut back playing the game because of this mode. For me I don’t enjoy it. So please give some real consideration to my request. You have the art work to make it happen. It wouldn’t take a lot to make me happy just a mode showing even in stills that express the history and or path of a players character.


I agee its not horrible but it doesnt even seem like a story mode. Ive seen maybe 3 cut scenes and thats it.
I expected way more cut scenes. It doesnt even feel like a “story mode”


It’s more like a role-play mode. And as a fan of role-play, I’m loving it to death.

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Some things just aren’t for everyone…


While I don’t hate the mode whatsoever, I have to agree with this sentiment. It hardly feels like a story mode at times, every now and then you get a cutscene for a character but those are to few and far between. All of the dossier stuff is neat but half of it feels so segmented it doesn’t really tell a story. Some of them are things we already knew, some are random factoid-like snipits that don’t really advance the plot and others are just confusing and contradictory to other plot points from seasons past. The only time the mode actually feels like story mode is the first time you play it and even at that its only the first few fights, beyond that there’s really zero plot development. You can sum up the entire plot in one sentence. “Gargos is coming, you have to stop him!” and that’s about it.

All of that being said I really like the mode and I can see all the love that went into it but its not very good at conveying the story of Gargos and his invasion in my opinion.

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It’s a great mode but it lacks heavily in the story of the game.
The 1 chance gargos really turns me off. I spend all that time to get there, he wipes the floor with you and your back at the start.
It nearly puts me off the mode completely and I love single player stuff.
I’ve tried umpteen times to get the astral stage even tho I had it unlocked and the generic ending really, really annoys me lol.

I hope it gets improved in future updates but as of now ive hardly touched the game let alone the mode.

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From what I keep seeing, I think the issue a lot of people take with SL is it’s unusual compared to so many other things we kind of end up comparing it to the story modes of other games, which makes sense, but given the flow of it I would think it might be better to compare it to Survival instead of another game’s story mode. You grind until you get to an arbitrary number that makes you feel like you’re accomplishing something, and if you make it great, let’s see if we can go further. If you can’t…oh well, let’s grind until we make it again. The difference here is the arbitrary number is replaced by Gargos. If you can make it great. If not, let’s grind some more until we can learn him.

I think the OP is a fair point of view. I have run through the mode several times in normal and will try to fight Gargos on Challenging. Frankly I am not that interested in learning to fight the AI on challenging. You have to unlearn everything you know about playing the real game in order to train yourself to exploit button reading AI. Some people love that but I don’t.

As far as story, it definitely could use more. I’m not the biggest fan of fighting game stories but SL is much more interesting when it’s interspersed with cut scenes. Sadly, it’s designed for people to really search around the nooks and crannies with different characters to find the fun text and occasional cut scene and I just don’t see myself doing that. It also makes me nuts that the story missions only show up for one turn - sometimes I miss one because I committed a character earlier or don’t have heals. And I don’t feel like starting over and playing the game all over just to try to manipulate my way to Lim Wu’s fourth cinematic.


I sadly am in a similar boat. I really really tried to like this mode but right now I just can’t get into it. At this point anytime I attempt it it is in hopes to maybe get lucky and unlock the Astral Plane and unlock some of the Dossiers (Which I love btw!)

Idk, I just find a hard time actually wanting to start up this mode and playing it.

But don’t twist that as me be ungrateful, I appreciate all the work and love that went into making it and everything IG has done for us, but yeah I just don’t think this mode is for me at the moment.

Yeap, I’m not into RPG style games. It takes maybe too much time spend doing that stuff (which is not what I look for ina fighting game). I do enjoy “claiming” my rewards, but I don’t use them until som time, lol. I prefer a more classic storymode. But if we talked about story modes the best one I saw so far in a fighting game was MK.
I know that MK has a rich universe and characters with a lot of personality.
Of course would love KI to evolve in this aspect, but if not the case, a classic storymodes without that much of going back, reviving/use health/ load/ go back to feed guardian/load/ go back to war room/ organise the characters items again/ load fight/ figth, it’s just not what I enjoy the most. However I’m glad for the people that enjoy it.

Some years ago I remember myself saying “if KI comes back, even as an RPG I would play it” So I won’t ever complain about Shadow Lords. I’ll just stick to my classic arcade ladder fighting game n_n

This is how I feel about it.

At least im not alone I guess lol

For a while I have had these thoughts but have kind of kept them to myself until now as I didn’t want to come off as a “hater” or somebody jumping the gun and not giving the mode a chance.

@RAGINGFIGHTER1 Sounds like you miss the art most of all, and I get that, but in SLs you can unlock WAY more stuff in a casual play through, while playing for longer, and working towards a bigger pay off in the end. I’m not gong to attempt to tell you what you should like, but I think objectively SLs is “better” than a simple arcade mode, or linear “story” ladder.

##Season 1 Arcade:

  • In S1 you got a 10 or 15 second intro vid, and then 3 slightly varied endings for each characters (8) depending on how you perform during the ladder climb.

##Season 2 Rivals:

  • In S2’s Rival mode you got real cut scenes for each season 2 character: an intro, a rival cut scene, and an ending.

  • You also got loading screen art, with a few sentences of story that led you on to the next fight, so you sort of got a actual linear story progression as you played the mode. Again, just for the season 3 characters…minus Omen.

##Season 3 Shadow Lords

In S3’s SLs we don’t get an intro for every character, we get a general intro for the mode that sets up the story for the planet’s war against Gargos. As you make your way through the SLs mode, the story is delivered to you in generally 5 different ways:

  • Depending on the captain you choose, you find specific story quests that are sort of the replacements for the rival modes stories of S2 (albeit MUCH shorter), but you get a few cut scenes for EACH canon S3 characters, a couple of other characters have 1 or 2.

  • Depending on who you captain is, and who your wing men are, you can find individual, usually one-off, missions for those characters that have a little bit of text that goes with them.

  • Depending on the faction of the characters you chose, you can find side quests that only certain factions can embark on.

  • In just about every mission you take you have the chance of the mission being augmented by some random event happening. Those random event can modify the mission at hand, but also they can add more lore to the world by mentioning thing like the Rebellion and missions they are taking, or the monks of Jago’s order, or various villagers that the fighters may encounter. There is a lot of variation on what can augment a mission.

  • You will unlock dossiers for characters, factions, items, guardian, along with other lore bits that fill out the world even more.

So yeah, the story of SLs is far less linear than the rival mode, or the arcade mode of S1, but there is much more there to dig into and absorb. S1 was pretty light on story, but there was a little bit there. S2 was pretty dense with lore, but once you were done, you were done. S3’s SLs mode brings with it objectively more lore / more denseness, plus more replay-ability, and the ability for the mode to be indefinitely expanded.

All in all, No you don’t have to like the way that the story is being delivered in the SLs mode, as compared to other delivery methods, but I think objectively you have to say that SLs mode is better/more varied than just playing a normal ladder.


Objectively, S2 had more cut scenes than the SLs mode, and it also has story board panels (art) that accompanies the text in that mode…which the SLs mode completely lacks. While the SLs mode has far more text/lore than the S2 rival mode, if we weren’t going to get cut scenes for all the story missions in SLs, we should have at least got some more art, and even some voice overs to go with that art in place of JUST text.

IMO, on top of this, the dossiers should have been fully voiced within the archive.

I think those little changes would have gone a long way.


Aside from fighting games, RPGs are my favorite genre of video games, so I really appreciate what they did with this mode. Most of, if not all of the good story content is in the characters dossier things. Go in and read through those and you’ll see lots of interesting stuff as far as story is concerned.

For god’s sake, there are a ■■■■ load of history on SL. The overall concept around it is nice, lot’s of side quests that reveal more details on what is about to hit KI in S4 and great content for the overall history, and the best of it, you can get it all fighting instead of exploring and talking to npc’s. You don’t even need to learn the AI patterns to complete them all and collect all dossiers in normal, so this excuse that “it will harm my skills against real players” it’s completely out of question.
I would enjoy more cut scenes for all chars, but hey, SL is a new feature and i bet it will receive more of them. And about the old history modes… they was boring as hell and i was able to finish them in a fast roll of 3 days. No dialogs, each ending had almost nothing to do with the char openings and you could only unlock one cut scene per time, seriously? I don’t miss anything from the old history modes. Bye bye and please, do not return.

Tks for asking. :grin:

Not completely, but when the AI gets hard enough it can bring you up to a higher level. For me going through challenging & godlike has done a better job of fine-tuning my combo breaking than the combo-breaking practice mode has…it just runs at a faster pace and gives you more attempts at breaking. I jumped back into ranked last night for funsies and flat-out destroyed some players.

For challenging and godlike yes, but at normal lvl you will need to fight for a long time till AI starts to give a bit of trouble… unless you fight real cinder, he can be a pain even on medium missions. lol.

I understand but for me there are multiple reasons I so r like it. Besides not liking the rob element. Time is a factor to me and I like a story arcade mode because it’s linear it’s a pick up and play and if it’s done right a good path to individual character story telling.
In shadow lords after jags gets fooled by Gargos it pretty much is play/rpg customization. Not a fan as you previously read. Lastly and most importantly is time. To go through to the completion of shadow lords takes a while depending on what you want to achieve. If you’re looking to remove gargos buffs for the final encounter you have to play through. That’s fine. For me and my needs I’d much rather have a set of characters to fight then a boss fight and or a secret boss and learn a few facts about the character. If I don’t have time to complete I’ll go back when I do. As shadow lords is similar in this respect it’s more involved with trinkets potions buff and such. I don’t really have interest in. If I wanted to play that type of game it would be rpg not fighting. I wish they’d just bring a story or arcade mode along side of this let the players choose. Just saying. If they did I’d play it a lot more as of now I’ve actually cut back my playing because of this mode.

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So offer another mode. Side by side.

It’s good you’ve improved by it I don’t have time for online fights. Even online play for that matter. I’m more old school arcade. Grew up in the arcade era what. Enjoyed most was thhoae simple modes in reguards to the amount of story in shadow lords mode their may be a lot but to an extent it’s how much time you can put into to see it. If you go through all of the turns that’s great. Myself I don’t. It sounds silly to some but that is my preference. Everyone has their own. If you love shadow lords that’s great but I must say I enjoyed season 2 much better