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Killer Instinct (2013)
|Killer Instinct (2013)|
Double Helix Games (Season 1)
Xbox One: November 22, 2013
|Windows 10: September 20, 2016|
|Steam: September 27, 2017|
|KITracker Tournament Records|
Killer Instinct (2013) is a reboot of the Killer Instinct series that began in 1994. Initially developed by Double Helix Games during Season 1, development was handed over to Iron Galaxy for the remainder of the game's dev lifetime. It was released exclusively for the Xbox One on November 22, 2013 but was later ported to PC through the Windows 10 Store on September 20, 2016 and Steam on September 27, 2017. One of the first major fighting games released with rollback netcode, KI's online helped to lead the charge towards FGs with well functioning netplay, matching with or even still surpassing the netcode quality of contemporary releases despite being nearly a decade old.
While bearing some resemblance to the Street Fighter series in movement and button layout, the overall pace of the game is much quicker. The most distinguishing gameplay mechanic is the combo and combo breaker systems. Instead of a link or chain based combo system, KI has a specific combo state that is covered in the Combo System of this page. Combos must have a breakable point to be valid, which means there is always an opportunity for the defensive player to break out of it and return to neutral. Combo Breakers mean that even if you are getting hit, your head has to stay in the match and they force both players to be constantly engaging in mind games. Compounding this is the extremely risky and just as rewarding Counter Breaker, a mechanic allowing the offensive player to call out their opponent's breaking habits and severely punish them for being predictable, all while leaving themselves stuck in an excruciatingly long animation unable to block if their opponent doesn't take the bait. The unrelenting pace of both neutral and offense combined with the unique Combo System has garnered KI a reputation as an extremely fast and punishing game, but if you are in need of a game with a zany, high power cast and extremely hype reads based moments, then look no further than Killer Instinct (2013).
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