So, I’ve been playing RAAM almost exclusively for the past 9 months. So when I read this post on reddit ( https://www.reddit.com/r/killerinstinct/comments/6ewh5m/getting_back_into_ki_trying_to_learn_raam_any_tips/?ref=share&ref_source=link ) I thought I should put my practice to words.
Here’s what I posted in that thread:
First of all, I’d like to give you a link for reference when reading through this post. Here is my Frame Data Sheet: www.tinyurl.com/KIFrameData
Before going any further, I just want to state that this frame data sheet is incomplete. The pages that are not done will have a “Currently using in-game data. This character is inaccurate.” stated just above their normals. The Season 1 part of the cast and General RAAM are 99 - 100% accurate. The rest use in-game frame data to give a general idea while I get through the stress of my current job.
Your main goal with RAAM is to almost always (99% of the time) to be within range of your Standing HP (+1 on block) or directly on top of your opponent. Your objective here is to force your opponent to make guesses as to what you’re going to do. You have a lot of options in regards to getting through so much stuff that I’m surprised people still call this character bad. Before reading through your options, remember that switching between all of these in a sort of rotation (I use that word lightly) in order to catch your opponent off guard.
Your options are as follows:
Stand within range of your Standing HP and to pressure, or force them to make an unsafe or reactable move which will give you an advantage. Being at the tip of this range will force players to utilize unsafe forward advancing specials (ex. Jago’s Medium Wind Kick) that will be fairly easy to punish with either a Standing MP into Light Decimation, or with a Light Dominance. These punishes can vary within the -4 to -10 range. If someone is jumping at you from this range, use Crouching HP into Medium Emergence. This gives you a decent bit of damage, and applies Kryll Poison (which can do 15% by itself if it goes the full duration).
Apply pressure with getting a Dominance to connect. This is fairly straight forward after getting a little bit a practice. You’re going to want to use a normal or a special with an On Block of -1 to 3, and input a Dominance just as your recovery is ending (otherwise, you will cancel your recovery and miss your grab). The reason for this is that it traps the opponent into being able to only use invincible moves which will leave them punishable if blocked and if they don’t, they will be grabbed, with the exception of Sadira’s Shadow Web Cling, Mira’s Mist Form, and a couple of other moves that have throw invincibility. Most notably, almost every other command grab, because all command grabs have some throw invincibility. And the longer the startup on the command grab, the longer the throw invincibility. To add to this, if you hit a Kryll Rush (or use the Kryll Rush ender) you will be at 4 frames of advantage. This means that, if you time it right, you can use Light Dominance as the recovery is ending to get a grab.
Assuming you have successfully hit with Dominance, you have 4 options. You can wait for your opponent to stand up, and possibly trying to beat a meaty you never threw out with a DP, and go to one of the first 2 options. You can use Standing LK to do a Flipout. You can use Standing LK with the intent of Counter Breaking immediately (so dirty). Or simply use Standing MK to force a lockout for some more free damage. (Tip: You can keep using Standing MK until the KV reaches 100, and after it hits 100 you can still use Standing LK to get a Flipout.)
Assuming you got a Flipout, you have 3 options. Wait and possibly punish your opponent for doing something negative. You can use another Dominance immediately to catch them blocking, then following up using Option 3. Or, you can use Standing MP to catch them jumping, and continue grounded pressure using Option 2 in this list.
What do you do when you’re getting zoned? Block it out. Like, literally start playing Frogger, until you get to mid-screen with a bar of Shadow. Once you have that, bait the next projectile and Shadow Kryll Rush into Light Dominance to start Option 3. Then never let them start zoning again. Otherwise, you gotta do all that over again. There are points when being zoned and not having meter will feel absolutely horrible. In these cases, you will want to learn how to FADC with his Kryll Shield. Keep in mind that any projectile that hits you when you have Kryll around you (with either Kryll Shield or a non-Shadow Kryll Rush) will leave potential damage in place of real damage, unless it’s a Shadow Move of any kind. Then, it will hit you out of those moves.
Kryll Shield has 8 frames of advantage On Block. 8 FRAMES!!! Unless it’s charged. In which case, it’s UNBLOCKABLE. Does your opponent have meter while they’re lying on the ground after a grab? If not, charge that baby up, and meaty them so hard, they wonder why RAAM is “crap”.
Has your opponent being back dashing out of your grabs? Start using Crouching MK, which hits on frame 8, and has 6 active frames. Then confirm with Light Decimation, for some damage.
There are only 2 Shadow Moves that are useful in combo. Shadow Decimation and Shadow Dominance. Shadow Dominance is a great Ender that should be used whenever you have a bar and a half. Shadow Decimation has a couple of uses. First, if you get a Wall Bounce while your opponent is in danger (or about to be), use it to continue the combo without adding KV and inputting Ultra immediately after. During a combo with which you have Instinct available, you can Instinct Cancel just before one of the hits, to, essentially, get a Counter Breaker and more damage, because of Instinct. If you don’t have Instinct, but you do have some meter, you can Kryll Shield Cancel (just hit 3P while doing almost anything) and catch people trying to break. If they’ve hit a button, or are holding back, charge for a split second for unblockable. I suggest practicing this.
I’m sure I’m missing something, but that’s what I’ve got right now. If you have any questions, go ahead and ask away.
Also, go ahead and check out Bass’s YouTube Channel Here and watch some Letalis sets. He has a really good RAAM (probably the best right now).
Edit: Also, Counter Breakers are your friend.