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Baraka Match Ups

karaokelove

Dead or alive, you’re coming with me.
Premium Supporter
After extensive testing and talking to other users who have also been testing, we’ve confirmed that Baraka cannot punish Shang’s up-skull unless the 2nd skull whiffs. Even if you flawless the 2nd skull, the best you can get is a f4 that Shang can block. You can also try dashing into f2 or b3, but Shang can poke out.

Baraka simply has no answer to this insanely-stupid move. Between up-skull, soul steal, f2, f3, and f4, Baraka has no avenue to get within range to pressure. Shang out-zones Baraka just enough to make it impossible to play defensively. You have to try to get through Shang’s death zone.

The only way to win is for Shang to mess up. If you can somehow get through all Shang’s nonsense and start your pressure then you can do ok, but it’s very easy for Shang to push you back out to no-man’s land.

Based on dozens of matches and hours of labbing, I’m putting this down as an 8-2, though I wouldn’t argue 7/3 if you wanted to be conservative.
 
After extensive testing and talking to other users who have also been testing, we’ve confirmed that Baraka cannot punish Shang’s up-skull unless the 2nd skull whiffs. Even if you flawless the 2nd skull, the best you can get is a f4 that Shang can block. You can also try dashing into f2 or b3, but Shang can poke out.

Baraka simply has no answer to this insanely-stupid move. Between up-skull, soul steal, f2, f3, and f4, Baraka has no avenue to get within range to pressure. Shang out-zones Baraka just enough to make it impossible to play defensively. You have to try to get through Shang’s death zone.

The only way to win is for Shang to mess up. If you can somehow get through all Shang’s nonsense and start your pressure then you can do ok, but it’s very easy for Shang to push you back out to no-man’s land.

Based on dozens of matches and hours of labbing, I’m putting this down as an 8-2, though I wouldn’t argue 7/3 if you wanted to be conservative.
BP is way better in this matchup. Reversal command grab makes this matchup winnable. This is really the only match up where I think BP should be picked over maruader.
 
BP is way better in this matchup. Reversal command grab makes this matchup winnable. This is really the only match up where I think BP should be picked over maruader.
To clarify a little, if shang does dumb shit like d4xxskulls to create space, you can block the first skull and reversal cmd grab punish it. A lot of his zoning pressure can be challanged with cmd grab to the point where he obviously has to respect it. Another thing to keep in mind is BP has better flawless block combos because they are meter less. So make sure you're fb punishing shangs gaps(he has a lot of gaps).

Once they realize they cant endlessly keep you out with pokexxskulls, they will try and play closer to you. A lot of terrible shangs will try and mash d3 to keep their turn. Obviously we also have an i7 d3 to keep them in check but more importantly, b32 will step over shangs d3 for a combo. Add in BP tick throws and this match up is bearable. It's still a hard fight, and you have to be okay with not doing half life damage( which admittedly, is a hard thing to let go of lol) but it isnt as one sided as it is with maurader.
 

4x4lo8o

Noob
Anyone got advice for the Shao Kahn or Frost match ups? I don't own either of those characters so I can't lab them out, and when I do run into them online I have no idea what I'm doing and win or lose based on how much I can keep them knocked down. None of them will ever play in longs sets either. I'm super worried about ending up in a bracket full of Shao Kahns at Evo.

I think Bone Picker Baraka does really well against Shang. It's possible I just haven't played a good Shang, but I frequently beat Shang players online, a lot of them immediately switch after the first match. You basically just patiently block and walk forward through the fireballs until you're in Blood Lunge range, then he backs himself into the corner and you can just mix him up til he's dead. Spikes is really good in that match up too - it blows up his forward advancing strings and goes under his straight fireballs if it's time right. My biggest problem is I always get hit by that mid-low string that looks like it starts with an overhead.
 

karaokelove

Dead or alive, you’re coming with me.
Premium Supporter
I haven’t fought Shao with Baraka yet but I think Frost gives him a lot of problems. I played several very long sets against @The Slaj Jazz and his awesome Frost, and when played correctly, Baraka can never really go on the offensive. You just have to carefully zone, trying not to trade, and turtle up, since her strings will keep you from being able to get into your desired threat range. Eventually she will over-commit into a negative string and you can start your pressure.

Overall, I’d say she totally controls the pace of the match from everywhere except point-blank range, so I’d put it at a 6/4 in favor of Frost, purely based on my sets with Slaj.