The Replay and Analysis Thread


Oh ok, I wasn’t sure about ARIA, but I’m really surprised about Eagle’s


Heh. Yeah, I wasn’t too pleased about that one myself the first time I got hit by it :joy:


-shrug- It’s more that it’s kinda the only option I’ve got. Sadira’s light kunai shuts Hisako down hard, so if a player uses it a lot you sort of just have to take it - trying to cr.HP or counter is a good way to get counterhit into full combo. If the Sadira player wants to go for mixups or use a lot of empty lows you can challenge with AA’s or counter, but if they like to float over your head and use light kunai you’re generally just better off blocking.

Dashing can get you out if they’re spending too much time in the air, but because of how atrocious Sako’s backdash is it’s terribad if your inputs get crossed up.

Mostly I just wasn’t expecting to see sweep in those situations, so tended to be a bit late on pushing buttons after. I’ve got old man reactions, so I’m usually not the best at punishing things that genuinely surprise me. :sweat_smile:


I really wish the game would give high/mid/low information in the Attack Data or something


At best, moves will list properties they possess like low crush, overhead, invincible, stagger, etc. But with that, nah. It was before the time of training modes like Tekken 7, Street Fighter V or Mortal Kombat X that gave you that.


It does. It’s one of the options in training mode. Can’t auite remember what it’s called, but you can turn on two things - one is attack (frame data), the other puts icons on top that say high/low/manual/autodouble, etc.


You might be thinking of the combo state icons? They’d tell you what type of attack you’re doing within a combo, but they don’t tell you outside of combo on whether it’s high/low. Only light/medium/heavy linker, double, manual, opener, ender, etc.


Ah. You may be right :thinking:


This is an older post but thought I’d reply: it’s fairly standard for parries/counters to have to be input before the move they’re countering, because otherwise you’ve already been hit and have nothing to counter. Think of it like you’re trying to catch a baseball thrown at you. You need to put your glove in position before it gets there, and then you begin the act of snagging the ball slightly before it enters your glove. If you wait for it to hit the base of your glove before taking any action, odds are you will be too late.

This is less Guitar Hero where you try to time your press directly on the notes crossing the line, it’s more like Arkanoid where the platform needs to be positioned slightly before the ball gets there. Counter breaks are active for between 20 and 25 frames in KI (I forget the exact number) in almost all situations. So that’s slightly less than half a second, which is actually quite a bit of time in fighting game terms. You don’t have to nail it right on, but you do need to be early.

Some other notes you may not know:

if you’re playing against noob online who just mashes breaker as fast as possible at the start of the combo, you have two options to really nail them.

1 - go directly from your opener into linker, because linkers can’t be broken during their startup (you will always get a timing lockout). This is not the case for auto-doubles, which CAN be broken during startup. Hisako is probably the best character at the game for this, because her influence linker has abnormally high startup and will generate tons of “free” lockouts for you. This is a very low-risk, high-reward method, because you can see that they locked out during your linker animation and then immediately go into heavy AD damage loop x 2 before lockout timer expires, and the worst case is you might get broken for 0 damage.

2 - counter break directly after your opener. Don’t even input a double or linker, just do your rekka opener and then immediately press MP+MK. It may not be entirely obvious, but after your opener completes, you are “in the combo system” even though you may not have input another move yet, which means counter breaks are viable and you will always catch “first frame breakers” without any risk of being slightly off on the timing. This is higher risk, but slightly higher reward because you get the counter break lockout (4 sec instead of 3) and probably about 10-15% more damage on average than trying to bait a lockout via linker. I’d say it’s fine to just do the linker way with Hisako repeatedly until they stop falling for it, then maybe break out the higher risk tricks later. In a ranked set, you’ll probably win without any risk needed.

Also, for regular counter break scenarios where you’re trying to give someone a reactable move and then nail them, there’s a bit of a give and take necessary to give them enough of a visual cue to force the reaction break, and ALSO still be early on the counter breaker. Sometimes you’ll wait slightly too long and the guy will reaction break ahead of you by a hair, this happens to everyone and don’t let it dissuade you from trying it again later. If you do heavy auto double (eg) and then counter break immediately, often the guy won’t have time to process it and won’t be trying to break there. In general, against people looking to react, I’ll try to counter break about 60-70% of the way through the heavy AD (after the first hit, and just as the second hit is about to make contact or is just starting to make contact). This gives them enough time to see the first hit, let their brain extrapolate the second hit coming even though they don’t physically see it, and break roughly at where the end of the auto-double would have been. It’s also early enough to catch most slightly faster reaction breakers. Not a foolproof strategy but it’s a good ballpark.


Played another FT10 set with @CodeComplete85:

I need to go to bed so I’ll keep my comments brief. First off - great job on all of the basics from last time! Your Sako is much stronger than the first time we played.

  • Remember to use your instinct twice per fight. You did this most matches, but on one or two you got flustered enough that you never popped it or activated only once.
  • Try to get more consistent on your damage loop. On a few of my lockouts you went into some sub-optimal stuff, but especially on your counterbreaks you need to do max damage every time. You risked a lot to get the opening, so just take your time and damage loop for 50% :slight_smile:
  • In some situations using damage ender instead of HKD (influence) ender would have killed. Always kill if you can - each additional moment you give the opponent is a chance for them to beat you.
  • Jago is plus after laser sword. Be careful about challenging after you block it.
  • Related, use shadow counters to blow up an opponent who is really buttonsy. I used a lot of frame traps this set - good use of SC’s will shut that down hard.
  • You already know it, but keep working on those AA’s. They’re much, much better than they used to be, but you’ve still got a lot of room to grow there.

As before, I made sure to do certain things very consistently for this set. For some bonus points, I’d like you to try and point out 3 or 4 of them that you noticed. The frame trap note above is one thing, but there are others (including some very big ones defensively).:slight_smile:


Yay, I made the public YouTube!

Without even re-watching, I could already pick out many:

  • You meatied with cr.MK to reinforce low-block on wakeup.
  • There was a consistent line of attack on jump-in (jump kick, st.MK?, laser sword) and maybe 2 things after that
  • You were ready to break my goto thing to do right after rekka opener: light influence. You also really did not allow me to use wind-up ADs
  • You combo broke my rekkas with the 3-hit rule with Medium a lot, because I always just mash Medium on hit confirm (or whatever I hit confirmed with sometimes)
  • You stuffed my mix-up rekkas after the second hit with low attacks
  • You were trying to bait out my S ORZ a lot, with that (teabag-ish looking :laughing:) repeated QCFing (I presume). You also were ready to SC my S ORZs that were thrown out at bad times


Watched a handful of games of that set, here are some of the things Storm was doing every time to help you pick up on stuff:

  • I didn’t see a single combo without a heavy auto-double in it, usually around the 50 KV mark after doing one or two light/medium something-or-others, he’d always transition into heavy AD. This is most likely to give you practice in seeing the heavies, which are probably the easiest part of the combo to learn how to break on reaction. You eventually started to guess break his “something-or-others” but I didn’t see you break the heavy one time.

  • He broke every single wind-up double and M 3-hit-rule rekka without fail, probably hoping that you’d notice it and counter break him. I think he largely left the rest of your combos alone (except the L influence breaks). It’s not easy to understand when and where to counter break someone, but I think a good starting point is exactly this: identifying what someone wants to break via watching yourself get broken in the same spots, then trying to exploit that. Sometimes you’ll get baited but you can’t progress to level 2 of the mind game until you practice level 1 a bit.

  • After every plus on block laser sword (which always came after a jump-in), he pressed a button which frame traps you, I think hoping that you’d either block or guess shadow counter or guess parry here. Swinging just kinda got you smoked. This is tough because it feels like you have to learn which moves are plus and which aren’t across all 29 characters in order to make any progress in this area… it’s kind of true but at the same time, kind of not. There are a few key moves to know are plus in the game (Jago laser sword is one), a few key ones to know are minus (Jago wind kick is one), and the rest you can kind of try stuff during a match. “Oh I pressed a button there and got hit, huh, maybe I’m minus, I’ll try to keep that in mind” and then you’ll gain the experience as you play (and for the tricky moves, you could just look those up/ask people what the deal is).

Here’s a good rule of thumb: most light and medium normals are either plus or only marginally negative. Most sweeps are negative and probably punishable, but at the very least they’re “it’s my turn” buttons. Most specials are marginally negative (so you can swing) or punishable (so you can definitely swing), with a few notable exceptions (Jago laser sword, eg). Virtually every jump-in is mega plus and swinging is dangerous (Shadow Jago pizza cutter jump HP is one of the notable exceptions; that move is 0 so you can probably swing-ish). In general, I would follow these rules of thumb and learn the exceptions, rather than try to learn everything as its own item in your head.

You actually did a pretty good job breaking down the list yourself! Shows that you’re making good progress about thinking constructively about your play, which is a very hard part about learning fighting games. Just thought I’d add my two cents.


Your input is always incredibly helpful, Infil.

  • At this point in time, I cannot distinguish Jago’s ADs at all. My only chance is to break linkers, and wind kick is too fast, so that pretty much leaves the laser sword.
  • On the counter breakers, I wasn’t sure if this was real-fight or mechanics-training mode, so I considered the possibility of baiting and played it safe.
  • Yeah, I understand plus/minus in theory, but, as we’ve discussed, internalizing it to the reaction level just isn’t there yet. I’ve just started trying SCs at the end of blocked shadow moves. I’ll try doing it with more things. I’m also uneasy about parrying when block stun is involved; I don’t know the rules on that.

I’ll have to take that rule-of-thumb paragraph and turn it into a chart to keep somewhere.


Couple of things i will note…

As you go along with Hisako, try to be better about timing your wakeup actions. But in this case, not so much your meaties, but your movement. Your wrath only refills when you’re not jumping, dashing, button-ing, etc. I spotted a good few times where you seemed unsure and would, say, make a dash before Storm woke up and cut your wrath regen. As a side note about movement, there were more than a few times that after mid round knockouts, Storm had you in a corner position but you didn’t move or jump away from the corner. You should make use of the ability to position yourself between rounds.

Reading through your replies, i’m seeing that you’re still getting the hang on some things. One thing i would hope to see you do is really make whiffs hurt. Storm had instances where there were whiffed DP’s and even a moment where he hit you with a button, tried to confirm into Shadow Laser Sword but was out of range and whiffed it. Those moments are ones you should pounce on and stack heavy, upfront damage as the situation allows. But i realize that comes with being comfortable with that kind of situation. Something to note as you go on.

Work to gauge the distance for your dash up actions a little bit as well. Some of these were a little off on the range. Also, work on incorporating cr mk into those as well if you want to keep doing it. Just like Storm was chipping away at your ankles, do the same for opponent’s looking to walk back.

I’m curious why you chose to escape to full screen at times. Mental breather?

Counter breakers are a risk, but in a training set such as this, this is a great opportunity to do so and ‘get your feet wet’ as it were. Tendencies being noticed mid set could be a bait to punish you as much as a invitation to capitalize on something your partner might be trying to nudge you towards noticing.

One exercise you might wanna mess around with is going to training mode to practice your counter breaker combos. Set the dummy to break at a specific point, start a combo and counter break them. From there, begin instilling into your muscle memory your best routes to get the most damage that you can and the best position that you can. It could be a relatively easy transition to using similar muscle memory to capitalize on general combo lockouts as well.


In this case they are one and the same. As Infil said, there were some things that I broke literally every single time you did them. In that situation your options are to either avoid the things that I am breaking (3-hit rule rekkas, light influence linkers, and windup doubles), or to counterbreak. Either would have won you the day in this case, and in most instances will give you at least some edge. People are pattern based - don’t be afraid to punish patterns that you see. Sometimes you’ll be wrong, but many other times you will be right, and that will force the opponent to play outside their own comfort zone.

As an example, light influence linker is not a reactable break. I was able to break it because I noticed your habit is to make your first influence light. If at any time you’d chosen to use a different strength influence linker there, I’d have been locked out and you could’ve had free damage. But consistently breaking you there eventually forced you into medium AD’s after your openers, which is a much more reactable break chance for me (were I choosing to break mediums). Picking someone’s patterns apart will often pressure them into choosing options that are even easier for you to manage.

Counter is a frame one reversal, so if you mash it out of blockstun it will always come out. The buffer window in KI is pretty generous anyway, but in counter’s case you can literally just smash on 3P/3K repeatedly while blocking and you’ll always get it as a reversal.

And good job on the list! You noticed a lot more than I thought you would have actually :slightly_smiling_face:


This is so great to read. Even though I don’t play KI as often anymore, it’s really cool how everyone helps each other out! Good stuff everyone.


It would be difficult to overstate how much the KI community, with its warmth and helpfulness (and sassiness), has added to my life.


I think the heavy AD thing is something definitely worth practicing then. It sounds tough to memorize all 29 characters’ auto-doubles, but in practice (especially at the start), most people don’t break on visual animations but rather pace and sound effects. Heavies are generally pretty slow, have much deeper, chunkier audio clues and are more “vicious looking” in their animations, even if you don’t know what the character’s normal heavy buttons look like. This is pretty generalizable across the cast and is how most people learned to break new characters when they first came out during S2/S3. Eventually you might learn animation cues but most don’t start there. If you want to practice this, I suggest using combo breaker training in the options and setting them up to do H and L autos (forget M for now), then just breaking the H when you see a slower move and letting the faster moves go. Pick the opponent as Jago because he’s a popular character. After 3 minutes of this, you’ll probably recognize the heavies a lot better; then switch to another character like Thunder. You might be surprised how similar the moves feel to you, and how quickly you’ll pick up on what a heavy “feels like”.

On counter breakers, I think a misnomer in fighting games is that you always have to do the right thing. Actually it’s quite the opposite; you just have to do enough right things to win and most of the time, being wrong is okay if you took a good risk. In the case of counter breakers, I’m a firm believer that even our best players don’t use them often enough, considering the reward for landing one (often 60%+ damage + knockdown + mental damage to your opponent) vs the punishment for being wrong (“technically” a big punish starter but often because of KI’s fast pace, it’s just a light attack into special for low damage, or a throw for 10%). I think you can be right on considerably fewer than 50% of your counter breakers and come out way ahead in the long run (the number is actually probably closer to like 30%). There are times where it’s correct to not risk a big life lead or a win over a counter break, and this risk management takes some time, but again, I think it’s much better that you throw away some games in the beginning by making some bad reads vs always playing it safe, because otherwise you won’t get to develop this skill.

As Storm said, parry is a 1f reversal. If you ever leave block stun at any time, you can parry the next non-projectile attack guaranteed. KI has something called “absolute guard” which means as long as you are in block stun, you can take your hand off the joystick and the game will auto-block for you if the opponent keeps attacking during block stun (try this with a shadow move like Jago’s shadow wind kick, for instance). This means you can mash parry and if you don’t leave block stun, nothing bad will happen, but if you do, parry comes out as soon as it can.

Btw, we’re using terms like “reversal” and stuff here, assuming you know their meaning, but if you don’t know some terms feel free to ask. Fighting game terminology is pretty messy.


I’ve begun thinking more precisely about wakeup options. There’s no time to gain wrath after a damage ender and only really time for a cmd grab or light TK, etc. I was trying the dash-at-last-second thing, as opposed to dashing in early, to try to avoid him reacting with a wake up DP to land a cmd grab. I don’t think it worked

How do I make whiffs hurt more than I am?

Full-screen escape is something I’m trying to do less. Sometimes, it’s a mental breather, and sometimes it’s to have a chance at wrath regen without being locked in block stun. And, thanks, I was just thinking today about how to train the counter breaker combo, since I’ve never been able to pull it off.

Yeah, I know the “thunk” sound and can do heavies for a lot of characters, but not Jago yet, for some reason, despite being the character I fight most. I was even breaking a TJ today reliably, which I never see and is supposedly harder. Thanks for the light/heavy training tip. And thanks to you and @STORM179 on the clarification of parrying from block stun. I actually did notice the absolute guard happening once and had a total “what just happened?!” moment.


St.HP->rekka. In KI there’s a mechanic where the first hit of a combo does double damage, so making a heavy button your punish button for big whiffs is a great way to do big damage. Starting combos with heavier buttons will also add less KV to the combo meter, so the outside potential damage of the combo will be higher as well.

It’s less of a mix-up than you probably think it is. We all know that Hisako can st.HP you from the woods or that she can dash up and snatch you with a command grab (which isn’t reactable online, and barely so off), so either way I’m expecting some pressure. To be fair a bunch of times you actually did do nothing and I DP’d the heavens for no discernable reason (:sweat_smile:), but in general people will expect pressure from you even if you aren’t right on top of them. If you’re really worried about the DP then counter on their wakeup (that one is a particularly potent conditioning tool) or do a heavy TK-ORZ.