Naj here * yes. Again *
I’ve recently attended the Xbox One tour event and had the chance to sit down with the upcoming Killer Instinct * or stand up because there was no chairs in the KI section *. I got a few matches in and I must say that I really enjoyed playing the game, though there are some things in the actual gameplay that may turn off a good number of players.
Now this build only had 4 characters as it only the demo, but the feel of it is very similar to a Street Fighter 4 version of the original title. Now what I mean by that is the overall controls and commands have been simplified by a wide margin * those who fought valiantly and developed callouses on their thumbs will tell the difference immediately .
It’s still the combo oriented fighter that old school fighter fans know and loved but like most of the revamped fighting game series of this era, Killer Instinct is easy to learn but hard to master.
Combos aren’t as hard to do as they were back in the 90s thanks to the “Auto-Double” feature, where you can just do a combo starter * or basically any special move *, mash a few normals, continue with a linker * or another special move * and either continue the combo or use an ender * or… you guessed it, another special move *. Now the combos won’t last forever but you can extend it with what is known as a ” Shadow Move. ” It’s basically the equivalent of the 90s KI’s Super Moves. They cost half of the Shadow meter, a two segment gauge located at the bottom of the screen and can be build by taking or dishing out damage. There’s also Ultra combos, KI’s signature moves, which can be done when your opponent is in danger.
But the best part about Ultras? Well, other than the fact that they can’t be broken, is that you can cancel them. This brings me to the new feature Instinct mode. Now you’ll notice a small gauge under your life bar that fills up when you take damage. Once it’s full, you can press both HP and HK simultaneously to activate it, enhancing each character’s own unique abilities to fit their own playstyle for a limited time period.
And of course, what would a Killer Instinct game be without those ” C-C-C-C-C- COMBO BREAKERS!!!!! “, which leads me to one of my pet peeves with this game. They’re soooooo easy to do now. In fact, it’s like a masher’s sanctuary, even though you have to do it accordingly to the strength of the attack. Perhaps the most frustrating part for me * and a good thing when I play this game again * is the new ” Counter Breaker ” move. Now you can break those pesky CBs and continue your maelstrom of butt kicking for a good three seconds! Whether or not you can do it more than once is beyond me but we’re bound to find out soon enough, right?
Now for the characters individually.
Arguably the best choice in the game. This Tibetan is back and has something to prove as he is super OP in this game. That lunging side kick is already stupid good but the Shadow version? You better not be dashing forward or attacking, otherwise you’re eating feet for 2 seconds and most likely a lengthy combo. He’s not too much different from the other games. He’s well balanced, versatile in gameplay style and easy to pick up. Definitely a beginner’s choice.
Very wild character. A lot of his attacks are super quick and now that he has a lunging overhead special move, his pressure game has stepped up tenfold. Most of his shadow moves are godlike as they beat out almost everything, except Jago’s Shadow Kick. He has no projectiles like his previous versions but more than makes up for it with speed and agility. Definitely a choice for those who love the overwhelm their opponents.
Now, I’m not really sure of how Glacius was back in the old days because I rarely used him nor did anyone else I knew but it seems that our resident frosty alien has become a lot sleeker. His gameplay style consists of a lot of zoning and set ups. His ice ball move can be charged to increase attack power and delay so you can set up long distance combos. He may be the hardest character to combo break and the easy to use counter break with. As with many zoners in the fighting game genre, he gets eaten alive up close, so Rare was thoughtful enough to give him armor as his Instinct mode trait. He has a lot of great long distance pokes, such as his f+2 ( which is also a combo starter ) but his links do require some timing.
I mostly played him throughout the event and I’m thinking of maining him. Now most would see how difficult it is to play with him and consider him to be the worst character in the game and it’s not too surprising since people made that misconception in the previous titles. This version of Thunder is the powerhouse of the 4 and while he’s not as quick as the rest, he can do a lot of damage up close. Getting knocked down or caught in the corner against him is a no no. While he’s not exactly a pure grappler, his new command grab does a crap load of damage and can be comboed into. Another new move is his low axe strike, which acts as a combo starter and linker just like his axe spin. Just don’t spam it too much as he has to dash back when he does it, making it very predictable if it’s done too often. His Instinct Mode makes him a bit faster and invincible during dash, making it that much easier to get it.
As far as ratings goes, I give this game a 8/10. But why take my word for it? The Xbox Tour will be in town today until 9pm so go see for yourselves?
That about wraps up this review. Oh and before I forget, my fellow Console Junkie member Madstalin313 discovered a glitch in the system yesterday. Check it out!
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