Shadow Labrys vs Kanji
The Neutral Game
Kanji's only option at long range is j.D, which strikes at fullscreen and easily avoided by dodging.
However, it is important to note that Kanji can use j.214A+B to instantly close the gap, which can be dangerous if Kanji has locked you down with D lightning.
In comparison, Shadow Labrys has choices between 8C, 236C/D, or 214C/D shockwaves.
Kanji's D lightning can also work at this range, though less effectively and more liable for Shadow Labrys to punish by breaking his persona. Should you also be in the air when caught by a lightning, it is also much easier for Kanji to catch you with j.214A/B, so it is better to be hit by it and not air tech until you touch the ground if he tries to follow you.
More notably, this is about Kanji's 5C range which, on fatal counter, will deal upwards of 4k damage in the follow-up combo. 5C has decent speed and can be difficult to avoid when in range, though if your reactions are good enough you can DP it without a problem because of Shadow Labrys's far horizontal range.
In addition, Kanji can now utilize his 236C/D as anti-airs. 236D will have more horizontal range if you try to jump back, but 236C will catch you if you try jumping in. In general, it is better you stay on the ground and try to play outside his 5C range here.
On the other hand, Shadow Labrys also has use for 5C at this range, though try to use it outside of Kanji's 5C range, as it will break Asterius easily.
Shadow Labrys can also use 2C at this range, though against Kanji it will not do much since he is not a very aerial character by nature.
Generally you should avoid this range at neutral game against Kanji. Kanji's 214D has invincibility frames, meaning it can be used as a surprise reversal if you are attempting to pressure him.
Kanji also has 5B at his disposal now, which can be mixed between 5AA and continuing his blockstrings or into a grab, allowing him to go on the offense.
A lot of Shadow Labrys's slow attacks such as 214A or 5B are negated by Kanji's DP, which instantly hands him a lot of pressure tools after.
A lot of Shadow Labrys's close-ranged offense is negated by Kanji's DP due to the nature of her attacks (slow and not very advantageous on block). This means much of your offense should be based on short, fast attack strings followed with an Asterius attack and continued.
Kanji has a lot of offensive options and his oki pressure will easily chew through Shadow Labrys's poor health. Much of negating Kanji's offense will boil down to guess work, whether he will meaty normals or go for grabs or gimmicks. However, Kanji's attacks can be just as unsafe as Shadow Labrys, it is important to punish him as best as possible.
Making use of 236C will easily keep Kanji far away from Shadow Labrys. If Kanji attempts to jump over it, it is easy for Shadow Labrys to either punish him with 2B (though watch out for Kanji's j.C) or run past him and force Kanji to try again.
A properly spaced/timed 214A can also be useful as a defensive attack against an airborne Kanji. Its high active frames allow it to swat Kanji out of the air from most of his attacks, even j.214A/B. However, it can also be very unsafe, especially on whiff, thus emphasizing properly spaced/timed.
Kanji can easily anti-air with 236C/D. 236C making close-ranged air approaches risky, but 236D can be punished by staying on the ground and hitting the persona while it waits, or even jumping AFTER it and hitting it in the air.
Kanji also has 214D and its invincibility frames to grab Shadow Labrys out of unsafe strings, such as sweep or close-ranged Guillotines. Some Kanji can also easily grab Shadow Labrys out of obvious IAD j.B attempts.
Kanji's DP is also a large factor in his defense and leads to a large advantage for him if it hits. Kanji's DP is almost purely the reason Shadow Labrys should focus on defensive play rather than offensive play.
Gimmicks and Resets
Kanji has a reset in the corner after some grabs into 5AA. This will reset into another grab, either 236C or 236B into j.214A.
Kanji also has a reset off attacks that have a 236A follow-up. He can delay the 236A follow-up. If you are holding down to instant tech, the 236A will whiff as you tech, returning you to neutral and allowing Kanji to instantly go into a grab while close to you.
When caught in the air by Kanji's D lightning, Kanji is able to follow you with j.214A/B. If you are air blocking the lightnings, you will be caught by the throw. This could possibly be avoided by backdashing out of the lightning the first time you are caught, or getting hit by the lightning and not teching at all.
In general, the win condition against Kanji is to play a zoning game and exploit his mistakes. More of what you do should be to bait Kanji into unsafe attacks, and then punishing him heavily for it. It should be important to minimize your own mistakes in this match-up, because it can only take one really bad mistake to lose.
Last edited by Nihil679; 02-18-2013 at 01:39 AM.
Is it normal that I feel like I have to put way more work in Kanji matches than the other player? I feel like all I have to do is make a couple of mistakes and, suddenly, I'm dead.
Also, 2C is my friend with dive happy Kanjis.
Shadow Lab always has to do a lot of work against any character because of her comparably low damage output.
New Kid in School
Can we start to talk about this matchup for real?
Kanji just seems to tell her Persona to fuck off, and even when he DP's and I punishes, he has enough life to not care.
The majority of the match will just be baiting him. Use buffalo hammer I think it doesn't get stopped by Kanji's dp. Her 236c should also be able to help when far away. It's a hard matchup since you can't really pressure him.
You have to play this match-up with vigilance and cattiness. You really want to pressure Kanji as much as you can, but because his DP essentially gives everyone the middle finger, you can't have too much pressure, if that makes sense. Essentially what you (at least, I) want to do is do extremely short blockstrings into high-blockstun Asterius attacks, like 5C and 236C/D, and then continue pressure after confirming he has not hit DP.
Attacks like 5A, 2A, 5B, 214A, and sweep are what you should be using to poke against Kanji.
Save burst until he hits you with Fatal Counter j.C or 5C, where he can easily get 4k~5k off you. All his other attacks are either difficult to burst (because they're all fucking grabs) or not worth the burst unless you're almost dead.
Make sure to have Asterius guard a lot. Almost everything Kanji touches Asterius with will break.
You kind of have to play according to the Kanji and what kind of asshole they are. And I'm being pretty serious when I say what kind of asshole they are.
The ones that spam DP primarily want to pressure you after the shock into doing something extremely stupid. If you find them spamming DP, run up to them and... do nothing. Confirm whether or not they hit DP: if yes, wait for the lightning to go away (you might want to hit training mode to check the perfect time) and FC 5B combo. If not, unless you are within range for a grab, wait milliseconds longer, maybe even switching crouch/stand, and see if he tries to reaction DP: if yes, punish. If not, have Asterius pressure or do a fast attack that's difficult to react to and continue pressure.
The ones that spam dive are free as fuck. Sit in a corner and hit 2C if you see them in the air and hear that monkey "HUAAAAAAAA." It's a free counter 2C combo and you continue pressure from there.
In addition to DP, the Kanji that use 214D as a reversal are one of the reasons I say to use light, quick blockstrings instead of lengthy extended ones. It's more difficult to bait out because the recovery is not that long when the invincibility goes away.
Kanji's Zio can be somewhat problematic because it's essentially a fucking ranged 50/50. He can ran up, spam the rest of the Zio, get Take-Mikazuchi back, and throw. Or he can jump up and dive and it's harder to punish because of blockstun. Or he can run up and hit you with normals because you expected grab. Either way, Zio doesn't actually hit Asterius, so if you manage to avoid getting touched by Zio, you can use Asterius to ward him off.
Break Kanji's persona when free. He can only use his DP and more of his damaging throws aside from dives when he has persona.
Kanji attacks that are free persona breaks:
5C (DP it on reaction)
236C/D AFTER the attempt and he pauses for a long time, or 236D during its start-up
5D (zio stuff, dash into, avoid lightning, poke)
not sure if punishing DP breaks Take-Mikazuchi, though I feel like it doesn't.
Long range: use 8C, or keep him away with 236C/D. 8C is extremely useful if you notice him trying to use j.D to hit you with fullscreen Zio, because you'll more than likely get a persona card off him unless he stops, then you can get a free run in.
Mid range: difficult because of his 5C control, which you want to DP on reaction. Aside from his 5C, you have better mid range control through Asterius
Short range: don't even go there. He can DP, reversal throws, and just flat out has better pressure than you when in this range.
By the way, his DP will eat Titanomachia when timed properly. If he's on the ground, stay close to him and see if he tries, go right into FC 5B.
Edit: if he's in awakening and has meter, DO NOT EVER BE ON THE GROUND IN FRONT OF HIM WITHOUT AN ASTERIUS SUPPORT TO KEEP HIM BLOCKING.
Last edited by Nihil679; 09-15-2012 at 06:35 PM.
New Kid in School
Thanks for the advice.
Maybe I should post in every matchup thread to get you off your ass and post there.
Ha, I'm just a vocal Shadow Labrys player, far from a good one, I help when I can.
"I can't. I can't.
That, in a nutshell, was my reaction while going against the craziest damn Kanji I've ever gone against in my life a short while ago.
Correct me if I'm wrong, but these are basically one's common wake-up options with S. Labrys: backdash; roll; DP; jump backwards; stay still and block.
Now, I don't know what special power great (and I mean the best) Kanji players have that makes them able to read the mind of other players, but I feared for my freakin' life every time Kanji 236A'd after knocking me down, because whichever of the wake-up options I chose, I mostly ended up eating dirt:
Backdash: Get 214A'd during startup frames (is that possible or is it that I was messing up backdash timing?). Then I cry.
Roll: Get 214A'd or get screwed by a DP.
DP: Have it blocked by a DP and then punished because of recovery frames or get 214D'd.
Jump backwards: 236C'd out of the damn sky and then proceed to die. That or get hit by a 5A or 5B during those initial jump frames when you can't block.
Block: 214A'd or block 5C > 2C and then proceed to die because everything has reset and I mess up on whatever other recovery option I choose.
Bonus! Burst: Gets "blocked" by a DP and proceed to get messed up.
It's really fun to see S. Labrys die with more than half of her health bar being red because of One More! Burst or OMC nonsense.
Honestly, first time I've truly had trouble with Kanji. They usually have a lot of trouble dealing with Asterius and I've gotten the habit of staying a bit too close to them because I can deal with Kanjis pretty easily. This one, though... I think learning to play keepaway is gonna be pretty important.
Last edited by FluxWaveZ; 11-04-2012 at 01:14 AM.
Had a real nice post and MayonakaMidnight craps out on me and I lost it.
Whatever, I'll attempt to summarize what I tried to post.
Play Kanji according to the player, he is probably one of the more exemplanary characters for teaching you how to adapt to players and not just understanding character basics. Try to quickly understand how they play (passive, aggressive, etc.), what kind of set-ups they try to go for more, how they react to situations, etc.
Your wake-up options are limited in this game. I don't consider backdash a viable wake-up option, it feels extremely weak in my opinion (especially since I have Melty Blood as my standard). Jumps are sub-par but easily blown up because of the lift-off frames and the unguardable frames, so even meaty 2A would probably catch them. Roll is awful against Kanji if he is on the ground. If he is in the air, roll is safe to use, but you should only use roll to avoid Kanji pressure if you know him to use j.C. For j.B or air dive, 2B should anti-air him fine.
By far, your best wake-up option against Kanji is (please read carefully) blocking. Despite his nature of being a grappler, because of the nature of THE GAME, it is far more punishing to do anything else outside of blocking because being countered is a HUUUUUUUUGE damage difference. The reason you want to simply block is that it gives you more time to understand the Kanji player, whether they go for grab oki more often than not, or they go for meaty oki or D or DP. You get more time because you did not commit to a wake-up already (i.e., DP) and you did not get countered, so you have more health to burn to understand or make a mistake.
Never burst as a wake-up. Simply put, just don't do it. Against Kanji, because of his grabs, you do not have a lot of opportunities to burst. The most optimal burst situations are during his aerial combos or after being hit by FC 5C from Kanji. OPTIONALLY, you can use it for gold bursts or use it as 1MB combos to ensure kills. I am considering learning extensive 1MB combos for the sole purpose of fighting Kanji because of the limited burst chances I have against him.
Adapt to the player. Kanji match-up is rather dependent on how the player plays hi,.
Nihil679 hates backdash and jump as a wake-up option. Both aren't strong against Kanji.
Your first wake-up option should always be BLOCK.
-> if Kanji is using grab oki a lot, start using wake-up DP or jump/hop j.A
-> if Kanji is in the air for oki a lot, use 2B
--> UNLESS Kanji is known to use j.C, then roll
-> if Kanji is using 5C oki, DP on reaction. Unless he is too far.
-> if Kanji is using DP oki, congratulations, this is what you block for, you get an amazing FC 5B combo
-> if Kanji is using 5A oki, LOOK FOR THE SWEEP OR 236A. Punish sweep, DP 236A. 236B has a chance of crossing over, still trying to find an answer to this.
Do not burst for wake-up. Only use burst for: 1. Kanji aerial combos; 2. Kanji FC 5C
Maybe put time into learning 1MB combos since Kanji gives very limited burst opportunities