The KILLER INSTINCT 3 Design Doc
Taking inspiration from the Street Fighter Perfect project from a few years back I’ve decided to write a design doc for Killer Instinct. This doc will be mainly concerned with global gameplay systems and character specifics of a hypothetical Killer Instinct sequel. My goal with this doc is to build upon the foundations of the first 2 games, take the things that were great about, improve the things that weren’t so great, and change/remove things that I feel don’t work, in addition to adding completely new systems.
I’m a big fan of Killer Instinct. I love the characters, the environments, the animations, the music and soundfx, and of course the ULTRAAAAAAAAAAAAAA’S!
Keep in mind this is work in progress so I’ll try and update as often as I can. I know I’m not the only person who has dreamed about a KI sequel so I’d love to hear everyone’s opinions, critiques, and suggestions! So lets begin!
Killer Instinct has always been about the combos and that won’t change. However the combo system has been overhauled and streamlined to make the game more accessible and fun and at the same time technical and engaging! New to the series are EX moves, powered up special attacks and Super Attacks. The ringout concept has been expanded upon with muti-tier stages with breakable walls, floors, and ceilings that lead to new areas where you can continue your fight!
Stunning fully 3D graphics, competitive 2D gameplay. Characters fight to the death on a strict 2D plane.
Move - pull joystick left or right
Block - pull joystick in the opposite direction of the attacker
Jump - pull joystick up
Crouch -pull joystick down
Quick Punch (QP)
Medium Punch (MP)
Fierce Punch (FP)
Quick Kick (QK)
Medium Kick (MK)
Fierce Kick (FK)
Each player has two lifebars. If a character finishes with his or her opponent’s first life bar, the fight stops and resumes like a round, but the winning character still keeps whatever amount of energy he or she had at that moment. The player who depletes his or her opponent’s second life bar wins the bout.
The first lifebar is green to yellow, the second lifebar is yellow to red.
Also of note the defeated character remains in the same position where he/she is KOed. This means if you get KO’ed in the corner you STAY in the corner.
Used to power Enhanced Specials, Supers, Ultras, and Ultimates. The meter is charged up by the following actions:
Performing Special Attacks (hit, block or whiff)
Hitting your opponent
[*]Chipping your opponent
Getting hit by your opponent’s attacks
The Super Gauge has 4 bars. The Meter Requirements are:
Enhanced Specials cost 1 bar
Supers cost 2 bars
Ultras cost 3 bars
[*]Ultimates cost 4 bar (also requires 1 Combo Gauge)
Used to power [FONT=arial]Linkers. The Ultimate Gauge can only be filled up by performing flashy combos (the bigger the better)[/FONT]
The Combo Gauge has 3 bars. Linker drains 1 bar.
Fills up when you take damage or inflict damage. Combo Breaker drains full bar, then you have to build it up again.
Press Back or Away on the joystick to block. There are 3 different hit levels: High (overhead),
Tap F, F or B, B to dash. Different characters have different types of dashes.
Hop/Dash - character leaps forward
Run - character runs forward, can cover a lot of distance in short amount of time
Replacing the ‘Automatic Combo’ system of previous titles the game uses a more open chain system. Basically any punch can chain into a kick of the same strength, and an attack of lower strength can be chained into the subsequent attack of the next strength.
You cannot chain Q attack into Q attack. This makes hit confirming a bit difficult and demands you commit to a chain
You can chain a F attack into M attack i.e. FP>MP or FK>MK
[*]Overheads can be used inside chains but they lose their Overhead properties. But if you start a chain with an Overhead the properties remain the same (similar to KOF) i.e. Cinder’s QP, MK, f.FP can all be blocked crouching but f.FP, MK must be blocked standing.
In addition any normal can be cancelled into a special attack (there are a few exceptions).
Autocombos are still present in the form of multihit normals and certain special attacks with Autohits.
Cancelling is very lenient and you can cancel right after the startup frames of any move. You cannot chain/cancel moves if they completely whiff.
There are no artificial restrictions on juggling. Whatever you can think of you should be able to do. In order to deal with infinite combos I’d like to implement an infinite detection system similar to Skull Girls. Once an infinite is detected you get a free combo breaker.
Perform special moves by inputting directional movements and button presses
Enhanced Special Attack
Endspecials return in the form of Enhanced Special attacks. Press PP or KK when inputting a special move to perform enhanced versions of special moves, requires 1 bar of Super Gauge.
High damage and powerful moves that can only be performed once you have 2 bars of Super Meter.
An even MORE powerful attack that can only be performed once you have 3 bars of Super Meter.
The most powerful attacks in the game. They can only be performed when both your Super Gauge and Combo Gauge are full. Also your opp must be at 20% life.
Character specific wakeup move, armor frames
QP+QK to execute a parry. You can Parry while standing, crouching, or jumping. Very punishable on whiff, on hit can be followed by a full combo (think Last Blade). Not every character has a parry.
Press F+FP to perform a forward throw, press F+FK to perform a back throw. Press P to break a Forward Throw and K to break a Back Throw.
QCF MP+MK while being comboed. Stops your opp combos. You can only break after the first hit in a combo. You cannot break Supers, Ultras, or Ultimates. Costs half meter, cannot be comboed off of.
Different attacks have different breaker windows:
normals (small window, hard to break)
specials (medium window, not so hard to break)
linkers (large window, easy to break)
Supers, Ultras, Ultimates (unbreakable)
QCB MP+MK, interrupts current attack (character specific), can be followed by full combo, costs 2 bars. The Linker can be performed on the ground and in the air, limited tracking ability.
Cinder is one of the most broken characters in fighting game history. For an explanation why check out this vid: http://www.youtube.com/user/redeyedol#p/u/15/lUd3LHEDlM0
So one of my goals with Cinder is to retain his unique characteristics and fun factor without beating him to death with the nerf hammer and at the same time make him not completely broken.
In KI1 Cinder is the only character who can ‘glide’ in the air after a jump. This is a cool feature but its completely broken in its current state, allowing Cinder to dominate in the air with little risk. I’m still thinking about how to balance this feature: either turn it into a command move and make him fall a bit slower so its easier to knock him out of the air OR remove it completely.
Fireflash (flipkick) flat out beats every move in the game and is very difficult to punish. Also it was immune to projectiles. So in KI3 the priority is toned down and the recovery window increased enough to make it punishable. Also he is very vulnerable to attack from below and the fireball immunity is removed.
double air Trailblazer (torpedo). The problem was you could pass behind an opponent and then instantly do a 2nd Trailblazer in the opposite direction. This creates some really messed up crossups, and in the SNES version it was UNBLOCKABLE! To prevent this I have 3 solutions; air trailblazer doesn’t pass through an opponent, trailblazer reverse followup has more startup so its easier to see it coming and react, also it has a smaller hitbox.
his fierce Trailblazer had a super-hit effect. Meaning it did double stun and knockdown. Well his fierce TB still causes knockdown but it doesn’t have the added stun damage.
Trailblazer cancelling/resets is removed.
Invisibility toned down.
**QP - **jab
MK - 2 autohits, good poke
**c.QP - **jab
**c.MP - **poke
c.FP - anti-air jumpers at max range, good poke
**c.QK - **slightly better range than c.QP
**c.MK - **good poke
c.FK - sweep
**j.QP - **
**j.MP - **2 autohits
j.FP - good air-to-air
**j.QK - **
**j.MK - **good air-to-air
**j.FK - ** good air-to-ground
**Fireslam - **F+FP - steps forward and throws a flaming overhand left. OVERHEAD
Blazing Uppercut - B+MP - quick anti-air
2nd Degree Burn - MPx2 - left/right hook combination
Forward Throw** - **Curb stomps opp twice then soccer kicks him
** Back Throw - **Trips opp and sends him tumbling behind
**Trailblazer - **F , F, Punch - Bursts into flame and rushes towards opponent. Air OK
Q close, 1 hit
M medium, 2 hit
F far, 3 hits, KNOCKDOWN
EX far, 4 hits. Manuever up or down slightly with Stick ARMOR, FLOAT
**Afterburn - **P (after Traiblazer) - A followup Trailblazer.
Q horizontal KNOCKDOWN
M diagonal up LAUNCH
[*]F reverse KNOCKDOWN
**Air Afterburn - **P (after Air Traiblazer) - A followup Trailblazer.
Q horizontal KNOCKDOWN
M diagonal down KNOCKDOWN
F reverse KNOCKDOWN
**Inferno - **F, F, Kick - a stream of fire propagates from Cinder’s hands. QP is short range, FP is long range.
Q close, 1 hit
[*]M medium, 3 hits
[*]F far, 5 hits
[*]EX fullscreen, 7 hits
**FireFlash - **DP Kick - backflips, firetrailing his feet. QK is safest and lowest to the ground, FK is unsafe and travels highest
Q low, 1 hit LAUNCH
M medium, 2 hits LAUNCH
F high, 2 hits LAUNCH
EX 2 flips, 4 hits LAUNCH
**Mirage - **HCB Punch - Vanishes into thin air
[*]Q immune to projectiles, lasts 1 secs
M immune to projectiles, lasts 2 secs
F immune to projectiles, lasts 3 secs
[*]EX invisible (embers still visible), lasts 5 secs
Human Fireball (Super) - QCFx2 P - Powered up Trailblazer that carries opp all the way to the corner then explodes. Air OK, UNBREAKABLE
Fourth of July (Ultra) - QCBx2 P - a flurry of hits ending with an upward trailblazer that propels the opponent hundreds of feet into the air, ending with a spectacular air burst. UNBREAKABLE
**Meltdown **(Ultimate) - HCB, QCF P - a flurry of hits that sets the opp on fire, ending with a Trailblazer that blasts straight through the opp chest, leaving a gaping hole. Cinder lifts his fist in victory as the opp collapses in a smoldering, bloody heap. ARMOR, UNBREAKABLE
c.QK, s.MK, c.MK, s.FP, FP Trailblazer, Linker, s.FK, s.FP, c.FP, FP Trailblazer, QP Afterburn (16 hits)
FP Trailblazer, MP Afterburn (launch), s.MPx2, s.FP, s.FK, FP Trailblazer, Linker, s.FK, s.FP, c.FP, FP Trailblazer, QP Afterburn (19 hits)
F+FP (overhead), s.FK, s.FP, c.FP, FP Trailblazer, Linker, s.FK, s.FP, c.FP, FP Trailblazer, Linker, s.FK, s.FP, c.FP, FP Trailblazer, MP Afterburn (launch), s.MPx2, s.FP, s.FK, FP Trailblazer, QP Afterburn (30 hits)
air QP Trailblazer, air MP Afterburn, c.QK, s.MK, c.MK, c.HP, FP Trailblazer, Linker, s.FK, s.FP, c.FP, FP Trailblazer, Linker, s.FK, s.FP, c.FP, FP Trailblazer, MP Afterburn (launch), s.MPx2, s.FP, s.FK, EX Fireflash (launch), FP Trailblazer, QP Afterburn (37 hits)
b+FK - 2 hits, 2nd hit is OVERHEAD
Forward Throw** - **
** Back Throw - **
**Endokuken - **QCF Punch - Chucks some plasma with palm.
[*]Q short range burst (kinda like Ryo), 1 hit
M fireball dissipates at midscreen, 1 hit
F fullscreen fireball, 1 hit
[*]EX double fireball, 2 hits
**Windkick - **HCB Kick - “HOYAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!” Jago kicks opp right in the face.
[*]Q short range, 1 hit
M midscreen, 1 hit
F fullscreen, 1 hit
[*]EX fullscreen, 3 hits
**Shaolin Sword - **HCB Punch - Jago executes 2 graceful swipes with his sword.
[*]Q 2 hit
[*]M 2 hits
[*]F 2 hits
[*]EX 4 hits, ARMOR
**Thousand Strikes - **QP (after Sword Slash) - stabs opp repeatedly, 6 hits
**Lifting Slash - **MP (after Sword Slash) - launches opp into the air, 2 hits, LAUNCH
**Low Slash - **FP (after Sword Slash) - must be blocked low, 1 hit, KNOCKDOWN
**Tiger Fury - **DP Punch - Dragon Pawnch!
Q 1 hit LAUNCH
M 2 hits LAUNCH
F 3 hits LAUNCH
EX 4 hits, uppercuts with sword, launches opp in the air, slashes 3 times with sword, last hit KNOCKDOWN
** (Super) -** QCFx2 P - UNBREAKABLE
** (Ultra) -** QCBx2 P - UNBREAKABLE
** (Ultimate) -** HCB, QCF P - ARMOR, UNBREAKABLE
QP, MP, MP, f+MK, FP Shaolin Sword, Lift Slash, j.MK, j.FK, FP, FK, FP Tiger Fury, Linker, j.MK, j.FK, MP, FP, FK, FK Windkick, Linker, MP, FP, FK, FP Tiger Fury (30 hits)
Killer Instinct Manual: http://www.scribd.com/doc/6166400/Killer-Instinct-Manual