Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Killer Instinct - Spinal Auto-Doubles

Combo breaking in Killer Instinct is relatively straight-forward. If your opponent is attacking you with light attacks, you tap both LP+LK at the same time to combo break him. If he's attacking you with medium attacks, then tapping MP+MK will combo break. And, of course, if he's attacking you with heavy attacks, simply hitting the HP+HK buttons will break the combo.

The real trick is being able to tell which attack your opponent is using. Because if you hit the wrong combo breaker (ex: hitting MP+MK when you're being hit with light attacks), then you're going to be "locked out" with a giant X and an exclamation point over your head. And then for the next 3 seconds, you'll be helpless to a combo onslaught.

Without getting into too much detail, there are several components to a combo. And other than the opening move (and most ending moves) each of the middle components of the combo can be broken. However, the easiest combo component to identify is an auto-double. This is where you hit a single button during your combo to get an automatic two-hits on your opponent. The speed, damage and animation for an auto-double is different for every button for every character. That means that each character has 6 possible auto-doubles to choose from when doing his combo. During the heat of battle, it can be hard for a beginner (and sometimes veterans!) to discern them all.

So, in an effort to train my brain into recognizing all the various auto-doubles of each of the 8 characters in Killer Instinct, I created a series of animated GIFs so that I can see them all side-by-side. Note that I've slowed the animation of the moves down to 1/2 speed to make them a bit easier to see. In a real combo, these animations will look *much* faster.

Notes on Spinal's Auto-Doubles:

  • Only his light auto-doubles crouch So if you see him crouching, time for LP+LK!
  • His MP and HP look awfully similar! Main difference is speed and the order of the shield attack.
  • Like a few other characters, his HK involves that telling stomp!


Light Punch

Medium Punch

Heavy Punch

Light Kick

Medium Kick

Heavy Kick

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