How Combat Decks work in Absolver and basic deckbuilding are covered in this page. It is recommended to visit the Combat and Attacks pages in addition to this one to better understand the concepts hereby explained.
The Combat Deck is a constructable moveset that will allow the player to create a unique fighthing style for their character. It consists of one attack sequence, consisting of one to three attacks, and one alternative attack for each one of the four stances, for a minimun of 8 and a maximum of 16 moves.
The first attack of attack sequences must start on the corresponding stance, each subsequent attack must start on the stance the previous attack ended. When executing a sequence of attacks the character changes as required, if the attack sequence is interrupted the character will stay in the stance where the last attack ended, and if the sequence is executed until the end, the character will be able to continue seamlesslywith the sequence starting on the ending stance of the last attack.
It is important to consider that the first attacks from every sequence are the ones that are available from neutral, if the players wants to execute the second or third move of a sequence, they would need to use or feint the first (and, if required, second) attack.
Attacks starting in the corresponding stance and ending on a different one can be used as alternative attacks. Alternative Attacks or, as commonly known, alts, are available from their respective stance, meaning that when performing an attack sequence the available alt will change as the stance does.
Alternative attacks are the fastest way of changing stances and can are the primary tools for mixups. They can also be used as starters effectively, since they are available from neutral.
Mixups, avoiding bottlenecks.
The most important concept when learning about deckbuilding in Absolver is that diversity is the key. Ideally you want to have two viable options at every point in your deck, and with these two options you should be able to respond to every defensive answer that your opponent can throw at you.
While decks don't need to be perfect, ensuring each attack in a sequence and the alternate attack available at the same point are different in the following characteristics (check the Attacks page for more information) will ensure that there are no bottlenecks in the deck (at no point of the deck a single deffensive option can cover both offensive options):
- Direction of the attack
To apply effective pressure on the enemy it is useful to have relative easy access to guardbreaks from every point in the deck. Other useful tools to have are double hitting , high damage and stopping attacks.
Alternative attacks and the first attack of every sequence are the most important moves from a deck, since these are the ones that are available without needing to use any other attacks before. These are the attacks that will be used to get the first hit on an opponent and, potentially, to interrupt them.
Range and speed are important when considering starting attacks, but other properties like charging or avoiding a certain type of attack can prove valuable. While it is not necessary to have starting attacks on every stance it is important to consider that having two attacks that can be used as starters from the same stance can be very beneficial, as only having one would be extremly predictable.
While every Style can use a good deck, every style benefits from specific elements in a deck:
- Forsaken and Windfall: as the styles have confirmed damage, it is useful to have attacks that have good damage and frame advantage in the confirmable range. Forasken can consistently confirm 16 frame attacks, while windfall can confirm 15 or 17 frame attacks deppending on the avoided move.
- Khalt: Khalt users get no guaranteed damage from using their ability, having fast or avoiding attacks as starters helps improving their chances of getting a counterattack off.
- Stagger: Stagger players can use their special attacks to cover up the lack of mixups at certain points of their decks, the attacks also give good frame advantage on hit, but have extreemly low range, having avoiding moves with good range can prove benefitial for this style's users.
Due to hit- and blockstun and the possibility of canceling the ending of the recovery of every attack by gold-linking, it is possible to create situations where the opponent doesn't have enough time to execute certain defensive actions. This situation is called a frametrap.
It is possible to calculate what the possible options are for an opponent after blocking or getting hit by an attack and before getting hit by the next one by following the next equation. Note that this will be different for most attacks deppending on wether the first hit was blocked or not.
[Startup of next attack] - ([Frame advantage from current attack] + [4 frames from gold-linking])
The resulting value will be the time the opponent has to execute any action before being hit. Though frame traps can be inconsistent due to (most likely) latency, these are the values that would ensure in theory that certain actions would be impossible to execute:
- Style deffensive abilities: under 3 frames
- Jabs - high thrusts: under 9 frames, significatively higher if the second move avoids highs
- Mid and low thrusts: under 11 frames
- Horizontals: under 12 frames