And here are the most important changes you need to know about!
Yesterday, during the Nightwolf showcase Kombat Kast, Tyler Lansdown surprised us with information that the balance patch was going live right then and there!
I rushed through Reddit to find how they changed my mains, both Cassie and Kano, and I was pleased with most of the results. Apart from buffs and nerfs, NetherRealm continues to listen to their fans and made a lot of changes I would label as ‘quality of life’.
Single-player kontent got a bit of an overhaul:
- Towers display difficulty rankings with skulls
- They improved the AI logic (can confirm that it’s much less stupid)
- They added another brutality win pose for every character, as well as secret brutalities to discover!
- They added the free Dimitri Vega skin for Sub-Zero (not that most of us really care)
- If you get to the top 10% of the Race Against Time (Towers of Time), you’ll be rewarded with Johnny Cage as an in-game announcer voice!
- They also added a bonus reward for completing towers, which grants you a piece of gear, augment or skin for the character you’re using! FINALLY.
Now, what made me the happiest are the following gameplay fixes:
- Adjustment to victim regions (hurtbox) after a character has missed a throw attempt
- Adjustment to victim regions during many hit reactions
- Adjustment to crouching victim regions for all characters except Baraka, Kabal, Kollector, Kotal Kahn, Liu Kang
This means that the hurtbox when attacking your opponent has been extended, drastically reducing the chances of moves whiffing when they shouldn’t. For example, if an opponent jumps back close to you, and you input Cassie’s 111 string, it actually clips them in the air and you can get a combo from it!
I tested this yesterday and was very pleased by how big of a difference it makes. The game seems way less clunky and you’re much less likely to see random whiffs between both characters during a match. It’ll also make hit confirms from anti-airs way easier to hit. And let’s be honest, it makes the gameplay look way smoother – and trust me, it was needed.
Online Mode Changes:
Apart from some minor adjustments to the stability of games online, they changed the Kombat League Point decay from 48 hours to 72 hours. And when it does happen, you’ll get a pop-up telling you – which is sort of bittersweet – but still very useful to know.
Character Nerfs and Buffs:
Some characters got completely castrated, most notably, Geras and Erron Black, but they were the most used in tournaments and for good reasons. Let’s just say that now, they’re way more honest and they won’t be able to rely on cheap tricks to get the win anymore.
Other characters such as Sonya and Cassie, also considered to be the best in the game, got a minor slap on the wrist. Cassie’s F4 got a small nerf, making it -3 on block, up from 0, but it’s still safe. It forces you to rely less on it, which is fine, I feel like it makes her way most honest overall. That was her dirtiest trick, that is, if you don’t count her Ball Buster restand advantage and the fact that Kneecapin low profiles projectiles and has a quick startup.
Sonya’s air control does not pop-up the opponent to extend a combo anymore, which was needed because the woman was insane and could take half your life bar away with 2 bars mid-screen and 1 bar in the corner. Still pretty minor considering the fact she can still do 35% without it.
Scorpion got some much-needed changes as well. His teleport, regular and amplified version are now high attacks. They can be neutral ducked and D2 KB’ed. Which means that people won’t be able to yolo teleport you anywhere, anytime for any reason.
Now that the gloating is over with, D’vorah is probably the character who got the most useful buffs. She’s now pretty much tournament ready and actually had decent frame data and some pretty damaging combos.
The Kahns, most of them, got some pretty good buffs as well. I’m actually picking up Shao Kahn since his combos corner carry like a truck going 80 on the freeway with nothing in its way. And hitting an opponent with his hammer is so, so satisfying.
All and all, I think this was a really great patch that reignited the fire I had for this game. Kano, unfortunately, didn’t get too many buffs. However, his second variation, Dirtbag, is now really fun to play and probably his best one overall.
Patches in fighting games not only change the meta, but it also opens up more options without adding in new characters. I feel like I have so many characters to try now and this patch really changed the game completely. It feels new, and perhaps it’s what NRS intended it to be from the beginning, but regardless, I am really impressed with what they’ve done.
Good job Nrs, we salute you!