Author/Twitter handle: @azpng, @ novriltataki
Character Discord Server: https://discord.gg/0108GJa0BJP2rV2vX
Day 1 Combo
Day 1 Blockstring
Slayer’s plan is to close the gap, harass the opponents with sticky pressure and small mixups, and if they make mistakes, he can punish with BIG damage. Slayer’s signature special move, Pilebunker, strikes fear in his opponents, and allows him control the pace at close range, when he has enough meter to make it safe with a Red Roman Cancel (RRC).
Slayer uses some links in his ground combos, and they can be made immensely easier to perform if you get used to “pianoing” their button presses, i.e. using multiple fingers to quickly perform rapid presses of a single button, or of multiple buttons. Pianoing generates more inputs than usual, and as long as one of this inputs overlaps with the right timing, the links will succeed.
1. Neutral: Pokes, Space control, far range converting
Working around Slayer’s short range and low mobility requires some clever maneuvering and risk taking. Fortunately, Slayer has decent normals and some interesting mobility options that help him through the neutral phase.
*5K – Slayer’s primary poke. It has fast startup (7f) and a deceptively long range hitbox. It’s fairly difficult to whiff punish due to a short hurtbox and quick recovery.
*2K – A low with slightly shorter range but faster startup (6f) than 5K, and also takes care of the upper invincibility and low profile moves that beat 5K.
If you are sure your K moves are going to hit, (punishment or combos) you can chain them into 2D or 236P. If you have enough meter to RRC, you can follow up K moves with 236K > RRC > 214K > Any Dandy Step followup.
*2H – A poke with great range that can hit at match start distance. Its foot invulnerability from frame 4 and improved effect on counter hit makes it a good counter poke against low moves. Being -8 on block makes it riskier to use at close ranges though. Can combo in the corner.
*j.K – Commonly used as an air-to-air, it also works as an air-to-ground when Slayer is just outside of j.H range. Has a small cross-up hitbox that can be used for mixups.
*j.H – Slayer’s primary air-to-ground. Slow startup (13f) and can only be canceled into j.D or a special. Leads to combos.
*Footloose Journey (j.214K) – It’s easy to use this special incorrectly and get punished for it, but it’s a great tool at the hands of an experienced player. It has many utilities like adding unpredictability to Slayer’s movement, closing the gap quickly, making high jump-ins safer, and helping escape from the corner. In neutral it can be used as a somewhat risky cross-up, granting a knockdown on hit.
*Mappa Hunch (236P/K) – Like many of Slayer’s specials, it can be punished if spaced improperly, especially after an instant block, so learn the ideal ranges of each version and don’t use it in a predictable manner. It closes gaps quickly and can be used to catch opponents off guard. It can also be used to punish backdashes.
Slayer is a character with relatively low mobility. He makes up for it with unique options for closing the distance, and for throwing off the timing of his opponent: Longdash Jump, YRC Teleport and Footloose Journey YRC.
*Longdash Jump – By Jump Cancelling out of the initial frames of Slayer’s 6 Longdash, you can substantially increase the distance traveled. By adding a double jump and j.2K, Slayer can jump from nearly one corner of the stage to the other.
*j.2K – Stalls Slayer in the air for a moment and extrends his horizontal movement. If done correctly, his opponent will mistime their reaction to his approach and open themselves up to getting counterhit by one of Slayer’s air-to-ground moves.
*YRC Teleport – YRC can be used with many of Slayer’s mobility options. By slowing down time for his opponent, Slayer is effectively sped up. The slowdown from YRCing allows Slayer to recover quickly from his teleport dash. You can teleport dash->YRC->teleport dash again to cover distance quickly across the ground.
*Footloose Journey YRC – By YRCing the early frames of Footloose Journey(j.214K), Slayer will gain a ton of additional momentum along the trajectory he was traveling when Footloose Journey was executed, without the added risk of recovering from it.
*Dandy Step (214P/K)- An evasive maneuver that allows you to react with different follow-ups depending on what move the opponent whiffed. Usually in neutral you have to resort to the fast and safe follow-up Under Pressure (214P/K->S). The short P version can be used to punish 2P and 2K type short ranged pokes and has invulnerability on frames 1-3. The long K version can be used to whiff punish 5K and f.S type long ranged pokes. It can be used to travel long distances and has invulnerability on frames 1-6.
2. Offense: Pressure, close range converting, mixups and okizeme
Defensive options like backdashing, Faultess Defense, Instant Block, and reversals give Slayer a lot of trouble, and most of his specials are punishable if they are Instant Blocked. Therefore, mixing your attacks and their timings is necessary. His pressure contains many frame trap opportunities, and he has several ways to reset pressure while chipping at the opponents’ health with small mixups and raising their guard gauge, setting them up for a good, round ending opportunity.
*c.S->f.S – This chain of normals is Slayer’s go-to starter for point blank offense. c.S has extremely fast startup (5f) and should almost always be canceled into f.S. On block, f.S leaves you at a whooping +6 frame advantage. And on hit, after f.S you can link c.S/5K/2K which all chain into 2D for a knockdown.
Piano method: At farther ranges where c.S can’t reach, piano the K normal alone.
Example: c.S->f.S->piano 2(K~K)->2D
At close ranges where c.S can reach, piano with both buttons to make it even easier.
Example: S->f.S->piano 5(S~+K)->2D
*Under Pressure (214P/K->S) – Earns its name and is Slayer’s best tool for pressure. Has a great hitbox, +0 on block, and allows you various follow-up options:
– 2K for low
– 5K for frametrap
– Forward teleport into throw
– Continue into It’s Late (214P/K->S->H)
*Slayer’s instant airdash is fast, has low height and very short duration, and these properties allow him to use it for resetting offense while avoiding grounded retaliations.
*j.S – A decent normal with a lot of active frames that keep the opponent stuck in blockstun. Good cross-up and can lead to a combo.
*6H – Advances forward and against croucher it hits later, providing frame advantage and allowing to reset the pressure. It can also catch attempts to jump out. It’s Risky if used predictably and loses to low-profile moves.
Okizeme and Mixups:
Despite the low damage he gets from them, Slayer’s mixup tools are highly effective on the opponent’s wakeup, and allow him to convert a successful hit into knockdown and other mixup.
After a knockdown Slayer can quickly whiff Under Pressure (214P/K->S) and then has a built-in mixup by either continuing into a meaty It’s Late as an overhead, or letting Under Pressure recover and quickly doing something else, like a 2K low, a throw, or dash forward and attacking from the opposite side.
*It’s Late (214P/K->S->H) – The meaty overhead option in the Under Pressure okizeme mixup has many frames of throw invincibility, and grants combos on hit, bigger combos on counter hit, and frame advantage on block.
*2K – Slayer’s main low option up close, as at this ranges it can link into c.S for a hit confirmable combo. Practicing this link is important for playing Slayer, but it’s not as hard as it may seem.
Piano method: In practice mode, hit the opponent with 2K and recognize the moment where Slayer retracts his legs as seen in this pic:
Piano the S button with your fingers so that your input overlaps this moment, and the link will come out successfully every time.
*6K – An overhead normal that can be used in pressure against a defensive opponent, but is better on okizeme. It’s airborne state evades some attacks and throw attempts. It leaves Slayer at +1 on block, and in Rev2 it can link to c.S against a crouching opponent. It’s slow startup makes it reactable with reversals and instant block so mix it with Slayer’s other options.
*2D – Another tool that can easily be misused and get you punished, but is much better at the hands of an expert player. If it hits with its last frames, by either using it at the right distance, or by timing it meaty on okizeme, it becomes safe, even advantageous on block, and rewarding on hit.
*Teleport shenanigans – Once you’ve conditioned the opponents to respect your basic okizeme options, Slayer’s forward dash provides additional ways to add confusion. It has two different versions, depending on whether you hold down the directional or not. The short version (66) is useful to cross the opponent quickly at close ranges. At match start range, the long version (6) will cross to the other side but the short version won’t. The invincibility and side switch makes it harder for the opponents to do wake-up throws and reversals. After coming out of the teleport, you can mix in throws, 2K, 6K etc.
*Helter Skelter (214P/K->H)- From the Dandy Step, Slayer hops forward, creates an explosion projectile on the ground and then is left airborn, ready to perform aerial actions with his +12 frame advantage on block. At the right ranges you can mix the side Slayer will land from the hop, and YRCing the projectile’s startup frames lets Slayer apply projectile supported okizeme like many other characters in the game.
*Blood Sucking Universe (63214H) – Slayer’s command throw can be used once he has scared his opponents into defending. You can combo off it with meter. In Rev2 it gives Slayer a buff where the next special move done within a certain period will become a forced counter hit.
3. Defense: Anti-airs, fending off pressure, and reversals
*2S – A great anti-air with a good vertical hitbox. Jump cancel it to continue a combo.
*6P – Can be used as an anti-air but it’s especially scary as a counter-poke. Only a small area around Slayer’s feet can be hit. On counter hit it leads to damaging combos. It’s very slow (18f) so you have to start it extremely early to beat jump-in attacks.
*5P – Slayer’s fastest anti-air (5f) that allows many different follow-ups depending on the situation.
*Crosswise Heel (214P/K->K) – It’s sort of like a Dragon Punch out of Dandy Step, as it’s invincible above the feet starting from frame 3 and hits on frame 6, but unsafe on block. It can be hard or even impossible to punish if blocked in the air at midrange, so you can anti-air with it in those situations.
*2P – Sporting a 5 frame startup, it’s one of Slayer’s tools (alongside 6P) to interrupt the opponent’s pressure. It’s better when used after instant blocking an attack. You can convert close hits into 2S->2D or 2S->Mappa.
Backdash Cancel (BDC):
Slayer’s ability to cancel his unique backdash is one of his greatest tools. By backdashing and then immediately tiger kneeing any special, Slayer can transfer the invincibility of his backdash into the cancelled move, adding up to 19 frames of invincibility to that special’s startup. It has many different applications:
*BDC jump (448 or 4428) – The most basic BDC, and very useful for escaping the corner without much trouble, as the backdash can transfer its invincibility frames to the jump startup as well. Remember to activate Faultess Defense in tight situations before the invincibility of the jump ends.
*BDC Mappa (442369P/K) – Useful during pressure for whiff punishing attempted pokes. Note that Slayer can easily lose his advantage, or even get punished, when Mappa is blocked.
*BDC Dandy (21447P/K or 442147P/K) – Both versions of Dandy Step have some frames of invincibility starting frame 1. A clean BDC will add a lot more, creating better opportunities for escaping and whiff punishing.
*BDC Bite (6321447H) – Slayer’s closest thing to a meterless wakeup reversal. It has very little range, but can very powerful if used unpredictably.
*BDC Dead On Time (63214469H or 6321442369H) – A rewarding option if you can spare the meter and react fast enough. You can buffer the motion into the backdash at midrange and if you recognize an attack you can easily go through an punish, like a projectile, you can activate the super, go through it and hit the opponent.
4. Meter Usage Priorities
Slayer greatly benefits from the Roman Cancel system, and enjoys the slow effect, safety and converting options it provides.
*Pilebunker (214P/K->P) RRC – Frame trapping is something Slayer excels at, and his scariest frame trapping tool is the Pilebunker. Starting a combo with Pilebunker leads to demoralizing levels of damage. But at -20 frames on block, a bad Pilebunker will also get Slayer killed. When Slayer has 50% meter it allows him to commit to hard reads and try to punish with a Pilebunker. When this threat is constantly in the background, it scares the opponents from pressing buttons, which makes it easier for Slayer to maintain his offensive momentum and chip at their health with his pressure and small mixups. Pilebunker creates enough hitstop when it connects that you have enough time to confirm a hit or block before spending a RRC. But even in case it hits and starts a big corner combo, you can still utilize the RRC to react and punish Bursts.
*Muppa Hunch (236P/K) RRC – On hit, converts your hits into big combos. On block it leaves you in the opponent’s face with big frame advantage. It creates enough hitstop when it connects that you have enough time to confirm a hit or block before spending a RRC.
*Helter Skelter (214P/K->H) YRC
*Dandy Step (214P/K) YRC – Cancelling Dandy Step with a YRC can be an effective way to whiff punish moves with a lot of active frames. It’s also an inexpensive way to save Slayer from threats advancing at a moderate speed.
His supers are also useful but situational outside of buffing combo damage.