The Future Is... Changing - Speculation Thread

notyourparadigm

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#1
Since Shulk has very little content regarding his entry in Smash Bros Utlimate, and is currently unplayable in the demo versions available, this can be a place to speculate and theory craft how Shulk will be in the new game based on what we have seen / known / heard from others. Until we can confirm things... grab your magnifying glasses and lets get to speculation :cyclops:
 

Masonomace

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#2
I'm imagining that based on the R A N G E we've seen from down air across Twitter and other medias, I imagine uair will also possess mighty R A N G E. If bair and other linear long hitboxes apply, then based solely on dair leak:
  • Fsmash2
  • Usmash2
  • Bair
  • Uair2
  • Uthrow2
  • Bthrow2
All these moves COULD get a range boost. Or, just in general they finally realize shulk range isn't enough and have improved his hitboxes to be bigger overall even for his misc. Moveset like floor slashes or LEDGE ATTACK
 

notyourparadigm

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#3
So far what has me a little :( is the current state of running not crossing up Shields. That means no more Monado Speed pivot grabs through shielding opponents from across the stage. Maybe it was one of the "bug" Sakurai said he saw, but who knows. Now pivot grabs will mainly be used for the extra range they give vs a standing grab, and the extra safety they give if you do a pivot

My biggest question: will the new art selection mechanics change how / when we can change arts. I want to still be able to mash arts out of hitstun please. If we can't... we are going to have to rely on directional airdodge in Monado Shield + BD Shield in order to recover.

Mm. I also wonder if Monado Shield is going to have a slower / shorter directional air dodge. If not, we might be able to recover even in Monado Shield, similar to how we would recover in Decisive Shield with AAS. Hoho. I'm excited to learn more!
 

notyourparadigm

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#5
THEORY: It takes ~11 frames of holding Special before the Monado Art "Dial" appears. This indication is based on a yellow glow that you see around Shulk as he is changing arts:

glow.PNG


At first I mistook this glow for Monado Shield, but as you can see when you slow down the clips, this is Vanilla Shulk.

The instances where you see this glow are:
  • In the all character reveal (11:39 onwards):
    • Skyworld, Vanilla Shulk first cycles (present for ~ 9 frames, before the Monado Jump Kanji appears)
    • Skyworld, Vanilla Shulk second cycles (present again for ~9 frames, Monado Jump Kanji appears ~frame 8)
    • Skworld, Vanilla Shulk dials an art (present for entirety of Shulk's selection, Shulk first begins to pose for the dial on ~frame 11)
    • Gaur Plain, Vanilla Shulk (again, present for entirety of selection, Shulk first begins to pose on ~frame 11)
  • In the mini Shulk video:
    • Gaur Plain, Vanilla Shulk cycling (present for ~8 frames, during which the Monado Jump Kanji is always visible)
Instances where you do NOT see the glow:
  • In the all character reveal:
    • Gaur Plain, when Shulk dials from Monado Jump to Monado Smash
  • In the mini Shulk video
    • Gaur Plain, when Shulk dials after cycling through all his arts

Now, what I propose is that this glow indicates when the player is holding down the special button, and these frame counts give us an idea that the dial will appear after 11 frames of holding down special. If you let go of special before 11 frames, as in the first two examples, you will begin an art cycle instead.

Now, why this glow ISN'T present during the dial between Monado Jump and Monado Smash is maybe as simple as the fact that holding B to deactive an art has been removed, so you can only dial an art or mash to deactivate. Or maybe the glow + the glow of the arts is too much, idk.

What now interests me is why in the mini Shulk video the glow ISN'T present when Shulk dials after being shown to cycle through all his arts, when the other two instances we have seen him dialing an art they were always present. It could simply be that this was an older build so the glows are odd, but I have another hypothesis: after one full rotation of cycling arts, inputting special begins to cycle through the "dial" animation instead of the normal cycle. The only support for this is (1) we never see a Shulk cycle past Monado Smash in the footage we have so far, and this appears to be uncut (2) there is no glow for the holding special inout as I previously theory crafted and (3) the cycling continues in a counter clockwise order through the arts as they appear.

If this is true... I don't know how I feel. Are you stuck in the Monado Dial when you are in it? Not sure if I like that design, if so. :x
 

Tremendo Dude

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#6
I certainly hope we're not stuck in it. Thankfully, I don't think it's the case, but I suppose we'll cross that bridge when we get there. I can imagine that the developers are still experimenting with what direction they want to take the Dial, as we can see from the fact that the Art Pose has iframes in the early version of the Dial seen in the Gaur Plain clip during the E3 Shulk feature.

If it's still possible to B-reverse the Art Pose, I can imagine we'll see some really silly momentum shifts when landing. It could make up for the fact that Shulk doesn't have much available beyond the new directional airdodge and sheer mobility. Imagine using Jump Art to sail across the sky, then dialing Speed Art and shifting the opposite direction when an opponent tries to track you, only to airdodge back in the first direction in the last moment. We'll be breaking ankles for days with that.
 
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#7
This is Shulk's meta now:


They took Shulk's best tool, the power that makes him in tourney and made them even better.

He can now use any Monado Art at anytime. We saw how fast he can switch them in the direct.
Think about the possibilities, combos with Buster or Jump Art into 50-50 kill confirms with Smash Art, or stalling/survivability with Jump or Speed Art into Shied Art and vica-versa.
All these great options into these different situations are here.


I'm going to jump the gun on this one and flat out say that Shulk is going to be Top Tier. (High tier at the very least)
 

GatoDelFuego

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#8
Given that we can now cancel dash with any attack, I don't even care if crossups are removed. Shulk's position as the fastest character in the game with a great ftilt and dtilt will be amazing tools to pressure from far away
 

Zatchiel

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#9
I'm really hoping d-tilt and/or f-tilt have more generous ending frames. Being able to truly combo from them more readily would be a godsend. With d-tilt you'd usually have to be in smoochie range to get a true setup.

I've heard you can't run past shields anymore, so I'm gonna miss some common Speed mixups.
 

Tremendo Dude

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#10
Grounded mobility changes are going to be a boon and a curse for Shulk. It will make it significantly easier to whiff punish (which may force quick retreats and defensive options from us if we swing too early with a lagless high-startup move), but it will also significantly improve our ground game, giving us powerful grounded approach options out of a dash where we could only walk before or had to rely on an Art Activation to cancel our run.

However, the fact that momentum now carries over from ground to air is a bit scary, as fast running characters that have slow air speeds (like Diddy and Charizard) now have a significantly larger unreactable zone. This means that the empty hop playstyle we have come to rely on will be significantly easier to punish by more characters. An anticipated empty hop for some characters would be a free punish. We as Shulk players, in return, would need to make empty hopping more scarce and play significantly safer in Neutral, or else we will fall behind entirely.

Our grounded approach and ability to catch landings will improve significantly, as will our defensive mobility options in the air (thanks to B-reversed quick Art switches and the directional Airdodge), improving our Advantage and Disadvantage states (at the cost of no more MALLC, or at least MALLC iframes). Our presence in Neutral, however, will suffer immensely due to the momentum carrying over allowing so many characters to become the quick aerial rushdown approach character archetype that we detest.U Unless Shulk gets some frame data buffs, I don't think the trade-off will be worth it.

My bets are on Shulk being on the low end of mid tier in the new game, or worse. The fact that so many matchups will be able to pressure him hard in Neutral and that the new mechanics completely eliminates Shulk's game-changing setups like Monado Purge and Nair Fair Fair tells me that Shulk's matchup spread will suffer immensely. A big part of the reason Shulk thrived in the past was because of his ability to break the limitations of the game to give himself options no one else had, but with this new game, it seems every character has some version of these options now, and Shulk didn't get any fundamental changes to make up for it beyond some fine tuning (easier mobility on the ground, for example) and quicker Art cycles.

It's possible I'm underestimating Shulk's buffs or how well Shulk acclimates to the new engine, though. We'll see what happens in the end.
 

GreenGamerJ

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#11
I think it's a bit early to be speculating on tier placements. I would imagine many of the specifics of his moves are extremely tentative, and as we've seen over the course of Smash 4 with pre-patch Luigi and post-patch Marth, it only takes a few tweaks here and there to drastically change a characters position on the tier list. However as the overall design philosophy of the game is to speed things up I wouldn't be surprised to see some of Shulks moves sped up as well before all is said and done, but we'll have to wait and see on that.

But what we do know is that the new game will give Monado Boy a few new toys to play with, in particular the new Arts Dial. The ability to switch Monado Arts near instantly (even if you're already in an Art) could potentially lead to some crazy new techniques and combos, and I'm looking forward to seeing what the community can come up with. One massive quality of life change this brings is that being caught off stage in Shield Art is no longer a death sentence, as you can quickly switch to Jump art to recover. Additionally with Nair seemingly being faster using it offstage could be an actual option as well, unlike in Smash 4 where you would just sail away and slowly Nair to your doom. The ability to use tilts out of a dash should be a boon to Shulk too, who's tilts are much faster and safer than his current dash attack. I'm also hoping the ability to directional air dodge helps us not be juggled so easily, as I personally have had a lot of trouble with that. Fingers crossed they've taken another look at our hit boxes too, it's incredibly frustrating to have someone fall out of our multi hit moves.

Of course Shulk doesn't exist in a vacuum, and the entire cast is affected by the engine changes in addition to their own design tweaks, so it's impossible to say how this will all come together. But it's fun to speculate and the excitement around an upcoming Smash game is always palpable, there's really nothing quite like it.
 

Tremendo Dude

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#12
Agreed that it's too early to be discussing tiers, especially in a vacuum. My point still stands that I feel Shulk will struggle somewhat more in Neutral thanks to the momentum carry over, though the dash mechanics willI certainly help a lot.

One thing I just realized... It's likely the Dial won't be usable in hitstun, as it seems to have a startup animation. Cycling will need to be used instead to break out of combos. This much I realized already.

However, can the Art Dial be used during tumble? If so, does it break out of tumble with the startup pose? If so, this could be a very low commitment way to break tumble, which Shulk was desperately missing before.
 

Masonomace

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#13
So, I just had a thought. Arts are a mystery still when it comes to their parameters so lets presume they're Smash 4-levels in Ultimate. From this assumption, the worst art will be Monado Shield.

Your two inherit flaws carried over if the parameters unchanged are reduced Initial dash velocity and max running velocity. But guess what. Now you have a indirect flaw of having awful rolls if used excessively. This creates a hazardous result to a Shulk player's fundamentals in Smash 4 preparing for Ultimate since rolling around the stage is optimal movement speed. This is only just from what little we know of without playing the game on day 1, but my speculation comes to an end with hopeful suggestions:
  • Less severe speed multipliers - having the worst dash velocity and run velocity leaves you with no reason to use the art for any interest or counterplay in neutral. The current optimal movement will be severely taxing to the art's playstyle of neutral in Ultimate too. If the ground speed parameters aren't improved enough to move faster than fresh rolling unstaled, then the art's neutral is gutted if no other indirect form of movement is sup-optimal (running into skid or a miraculous endlag reduction on dash attack).

  • Stronger out of shield game - already having higher shield health and regeneration is great, but this alone wouldn't be enough to warrant usage for the art if the movement speed remains to be gutted. Even when holding shield, the out of shield options consisting of shield-drop jab, down tilt, or jump-canceled Airslash should tell you that you're limited to one viable choice that still gets boxed out by high level block-strings. Not to mention that Shield art by design loses to grab fundamentally. The new changes that would greatly buff Shield art would include: longer perfect shield window, higher friction, reduced shield-stun and or shield hitlag in the form of taking less damage on block inherently, or less shield drop frames. Any or all of these ideas would greatly benefit a reason to make Shield art useful enough to attempt using in close quarters.
If these suggestions don't happen and pretending that Shield art is just copy-pasted into Ultimate the way it is now... without knowing how the knockback formula truly works mathed out, the only safe bet to say for sure about Monado Shield is... it's going to be useless until you actually feel like you'll die and you will dial switch to it on a dime to take a fatal blow only to survive and then dial switch it off to a beneficial art for recovery. Which is anything other than Shield art. But at least directional airdodge will help Shield art recover better?...
 
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