Speedrun strategy... but what am I missing?
3 years ago

Hey all, I realise when watching these recorded runs they took a lot of time and hard work to produce, however I'm just finding I cannot replicate the core basic strategy and wondering if I'm missing something?

I have the GOG version of MK1 and I've read Tenka's Arcade guide which refers to 2 core combos with Johnny Cage. I see that these same strategies are used verbatim on the GOG CD version, so I assume it's 100% relevant. I'm also using P2 controls etc.

What I don't get however is why my JP, JK and Shadow Kick moves just aren't making contact the way I see them doing in the videos for the various speedruns? Any help here is greatly appreciated.

JK from half a screen: When I jump at a player from a half screen distance and land a kick on them, when I do Cage's shadow kick it never executes fast enough to catch the falling opponent to create the juggle. Instead the player hits the ground and I end up standing over their body as they prepare to stand and retaliate with my guard down.

JP or JK from point blank: When I stand point black of the opponent, no gap between them and I, if I do a JP or JK I just fly over them. Is this because it all relies on the opponent to jump or otherwise do something that raises their hitbox?

NerdyNester and Tenka like this
United Kingdom

Could you post a video of what's happening when you try?

NerdyNester and Tenka like this
New South Wales, Australia

Ok so first of all, make sure you have made your way to fight 3 first, however you can, before beginning to learn the strat.

The reason being is that fight 1's AI is NOTORIOUSLY random. They will often not react as they should just due to RNG. Sonya is by far the most co-operative, Kano is by far the least co-operative, getting SZ or Scorpion to co-operate on fight 1 is a pain in the ass.

I should also make sure its clear (incase you missed it) that you want to be on Very Hard. It is required by the rules, but it is also essential into making the AI perform the necessary patterns which work with this strategy. Even with the AI set to very hard, fight 1/2 can still be an RNG nightmare. Once you get to fight 3 onwards everything starts to become a lot more consistent.

As for what you might be doing wrong. You do want a gap between you and the enemy, and that gap distance changes depending on if you are doing jump punch or jump kick. Jump punch you want to be about sweep distance away, jump kick about half that (any closer and you will probably get thrown). The distance is very specific.

I recommend forgoing the "walking forward to them" when starting out. When learning the strategy the best thing to do is to start crouched, wait for them to walk to you. When they get to the appropriate distance do the jump punch or jump kick.

If done correctly the AI will attempt to do a vertical jump kick to counter you, but JC's hit box is going to come out on top.

Unfortuantely the guide you read is not quite complete and really only a "quick chop work", doesn't quite cover a lot of the details that need to be covered.

Specifically, do the Jump kick against Sub-Zero,Scorpion and Kano. Do the jump punch against Sonya, Liu Kang, Raiden and JC mirror. This is due to SZ/Scorp/Kano's jump kick hit box being a lot harder to connect with. The jump kick (at closer distance) is a lot easier.

Now all of this information is associated specifically with the Arcade. MS-DOS has a few quirks beyond that, most notably that everyone has about 10% more HP. 3x Jump Punch > Shadow kick does not kill them like it does on Arcade. So instead you need to do 2x Jump Punch > Shadow Kick with 1x Jump kick > shadow kick. This often works out well if you have an opponent like SZ/Scorp/Sonya who will almost always projectile on opening, thats where the JK>Shadow kick comes in and allows you to finish them with 2x JP> Shadow kick (if you can put it together, depending on the opponent).

As for "following up with a shadow kick" whenever you connect with JK or JP, you must begin to buffer the back/forward movement AS JC is falling, and press LK when he hits the ground.

Like @DWednesday suggested, posting some footage of your attempts will go along way for me helping you figure out whats going wrong. Make no mistake, MK1 has probably he most complex speedrun of all the classic MK's. There are many layers to learn and jumping head first into WR strats may be overwhelming. It's best done in stages.

Edited by the author 3 years ago
irwazr and NerdyNester like this
New South Wales, Australia

Also I recommend joining the Discord if you havent already. Feel free to @ me or DM me there and I can help you 1:1.

NerdyNester likes this
New South Wales, Australia

I've just added a new guide which should cover everything a lot more in depth. Again it is focusing on the Arcade version, but provided you cater for the slight differences, most of it carries.

Just be aware of the "extra 10% hp rule" and you should be able to still use most of the strategies described in it.

That guide is STILL not complete and doesnt cover the advanced strats on endurances/Shang Tsung, but if you can get that far with the current guide you may be able to put the rest together yourself (or DM me and I'll help).

NerdyNester likes this

Wow... thanks so much Tenka! I've read your new guide and I can see what you mean. I've taken this onboard and had a couple of goes at it now, and already I'm seeing a big difference. I'll keep practicing and see what sort of times I come up with. As suggested by DWednesday, I'll posted a video if I keep having issues. I'll also join you all on Discord.

Thanks again.

Tenka likes this