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Guide - Grandmaster Living Guide[UPDATED]- How to Deal with Grandmaster by hkriderz

hkriderz

Lin Kuei Scum, yellow robot enthusiast
Hey guys. I've been meaning to make this thread for a long time now. Ever since the patch hit, sub is possibly the most complained about character in the game in it's current state. Due to the recent changes of armor and sub's universal changes, he has become more of a powerhouse than he already was. He can combo females and males for around the same damage, his new f12 allows for easy knockdowns into tons of Klone fun. Coupled with the fact that he has a safe special which build him meter and a 7 frame poke at -3 which is really good.

Well, most people who played 5-5 characters or losing characters have officially given up (most of them) and are either counterpicking with his many losing matches or just resorting to complaining on every stream and chat and calling out and insulting at us sub mains lol. I am here to alleviate some of the pain we have caused ;)

Most people that fall into the groups i mentioned above have no idea about how sub's corner game works or how to escape and have just given up when sub mixed them to death. There are a lot of key things to look out for and stuff you can do to take the Klone away and claw your way out of the eternal death of the corner. This is a living guide, so I will be taking your suggestions and matchup knowlege to add to this guide since its a lot to test multiple setups on about 35 characters xD

HUGE DISCLAIMER
- This guide is not meant to be a way to automatically make the matchup in your favor or win it with ease. Grandmaster is clearly a top variation and has matchups in which he purely dominates. (you can search the forums for the list). This is for players who need help dealing with him the Klone.

Alright so to beat our enemy, we must know him, right?

Let's start with this three main specials.

Shatter (DB1)- main safe meterbuilding ender. All strings have a gap into shatter besides f4. It's -5 so sub shouldn't be beating out anything unless he armors. Now the main deal with it is that sub can mix it up by ending with clone instead to change it up and confuse his opponent. So people get frozen trying to take their turn or get hit out of their move when sub shatters.

Iceball and EX (DF2)
- 31 and 21 frames respectively. Ex one eats projectiles. These are easy to spot, and you should duck them at all costs. EX version is easy to react to and block. The golden rule to remember is when in a projectile war agaisnt sub, keep it sporadic. If a sub player smells out a pattern, it takes one ex iceball to carry you and end you. So ALWAYS be vigilant. He doesn't have a teleport, and his only way in is slide.

Klone cancels- the main bullying tool in the midscreen for sub. These cancels range from highly unsafe to fully safe. I did a lot of testing and tried to come up with rough estimates of startup numbers for specials that punishes them. Off of first glance, f33, poke and f42 clone are the most unsafe, while f4 clone is the king. I did not test EX klone and the only one i know if F4xxEX klone which is +10. I only tested the unsafe stuff and will touch on EX Klone later on.

NOTE ON KLONE KOOLDOWN- The Klone's cooldown depends on when its destroyed or gone i.e. the later it disappears the faster it recovers. Max being about 2 seconds and min being downright instant. Its hilarious.

Now on to the corner, where Grandmaster shines.

To start things off, Sub Zero's corner game has two distinct setups: Klose Klone, and Far Klone

Klose Klone- most difficult setup to escape. Allows for an untechable throw, f33, and his other mixups. Shatter combos- impossible. Jump attacks most likely to get frozen even if subs hitbox is closer. Damage- around mid 20s to low 30s

Far Klone- most damaging setup. Allows for 50/50 shatter kombos. Techable throw, no f33 freeze. Easier to escape. Jump attacks don't get frozen. Damage ranging from 43 to 50%.

These two setups are child's play to spot. Sub has to physically move to set up far klone, and it takes a quick look to see if the clone is close to your feet to understand the difference. Very easy to spot, and look out for each setup. All competent grandmaster players mix these up when they want damage or just a very hard situation to put you in.

Alright now that we know what is going on when we are facing him, its time to see how to deal with him.

KEEP YOUR COOL
- no it ain't just a pun. Sub is the best at captilizing on doubt and fear. He wants you to random jump or mash buttons or just stay blocking out of fear. The main thing is always keep your cool. Assess the situation you're in, and look for a way out instead of getting corner raped and giving up.


Let's start midscreen.

Midscreen

Random slides should be a breeze for good players. They can be called out unless the sub player manages to mash it out lol.

Mid to far range- Low block
Mid range- Low since only f42 and 123 reach
Close up- 50 50 territory, punishable b2 area

Almost every character has a punish for at least one of sub's cancels (besides smoke :( and maybe a couple others) And if you let sub keep canceling all day you have already lost half the battle. Having sub up close and safely Kloning on you is a major negative as it allows him to freely bully you and push you to the corner. Here are rough estimates for subs clone cancel frames so that people can test and see what they can use to punish. I set the CPU to reversal me against the slowest armor moves in the game.

(Keep in mind a few of these change depending if its midscreen or not since there might be a bit more distance, but i wanted to try and get the raw negative frames.)

DISCLAIMER- This doesn't account for the trajectory of the move or if it reaches. It's purely frame data

S1XDB2- ~ -27
S2xxDB2- ~ -27
D4xxDB2- ~ -29
D1xxDB2- ~ -31
D3xxDB2- ~ -31
11xDB2- ~ -17
B12xDB2- ~ -22
F42xDB2- ~ -27
F4xDB2- Safe
123xxDB2- ~ -20
F33xxDB2- ~ -31
B33xxDB2- ~ -19

Use these to lab and see how any armor your character has is good enough to punish the cancels.
- Shatter can be an annoyance since subs mix them up to trick people. Keep in mind that if you do armor, It will hit sub on both options since shatter has a gap.
- A simple poke check goes a long way. It won't get clone frozen, you can block shatter and then poke to minimize the guesswork. and if it hits you get plus frames into something guranteed. If it gets blocked you're close enough to sub that he cant counterpoke you with Klone so try to get your turn.

Before Brady became emo and deleted it, I would have linked his thread lol. But I'll just put it like this. Please people lab b2 and learn how to punish it. Its -13 with a good amount of stun but it ain't no pre-patch alien rekkas xD. Lab this since I won't do it for you. For characters who truly can't or need to use resources, I feel your pain. Use your meter wisely. Try and take and keep your turn instead. Sub cannot armor EX clone anymore so he can be pressured easier. and his slide is full combo punished.

Now to deal with the Korner
Here's the thing. Nothing ever works out perfectly. Most of the time subs safe in the corner. Don't bother trying to punish all the time unless its an exception i.e. character specific. The main goal here is to get rid of the klone and push sub back enough so that we have some space to work with, or take our turn and switch sides if possible.

Main thing- Delayed wakeup
- If sub goes for an instant mixup it whiffs, his klone time gets reduced by a lot, and if the sub player is not looking out for it, he will miss and you will wake up to either punish or take your turn making the Klone go away and having a chance out.

Far Klone- Easiest one
- Delayed wakeup makes both options whiff, allowing for a down poke, string, or even a grab sometimes on wakeup.

* A lot of people come to us and throw the overhead shatter combo in our face and say "you can do 50% off of a safe Klone anytime man! That's bullshit!". This is barely true. The overhead 50% shatter combo only works if you instantly wakeup on knockdown and get hit. Never instant wakeup on far Klone. Please. It's useless and grants us extra klone time. This is what happens.
* NEVER DO IT UNLESS ON A GODLIKE READ OR YOU'RE ARMORING. YOU WILL BE FORCED TO HOLD 2 MIXUPS AT LEAST.

- If the sub player knows youre trying to delay wakeup, they will try and counter it with a delayed mixup. Well since this is MKX you will have to hold one. Good thing is, if you block them, you can poke or punish depending on your character. It's a much more bearable situation. Don't let the sub player bully you with any gimmicks.

Ah yes. The ugly yet beautiful brainchild of Lord Brady Ricans, and Zoofs. The almost inescapable one. Let's see what we can do.

A mix of delayed and instant wakeup- Delayed is still king, but if you want to challenge sub or you have a good read going, it helps.
- Early Grab
- Late grab
- F33
* As you noticed, backdash does freeze you. But the clone goes away in a few frames and sub has about 60 frames of recovery in between in which case he's far. Use that to your advantage. Mixing in a neutal jump helps too as sometimes sub players do f33 into instant NJK or JIK.

* If he does a late grab/late f33 mixup, you have to guess unfortunately. Hey it's MKX xD
*B2 with Klose klone can be avoided by delayed wakeup, but delayed b2 is harder. Either guess or do short wakeup and squeeze a poke in. It's not consistent by any means

ARMOR IS STILL AN OPTION, AND A GOOD ONE SINCE SUB CAN'T BREAK TWO HITS YET (At least not nicely enough to grant him a setup or whatnot).

A Quick note on EX Klone- It is a powerful tool for sub zero. Its plus on many cancels up to +10 and you usually can't jump so you have to stay grounded. Also the EX Klone stays out a lot longer causing sub to mix up to 3 times. It's not easy. What I'll say is, he doesn't jail besides f4 ex Klone into d4 and his Klone kooldown increases as well.

Interactables
These are basically some cheat codes for the corner. Double armor, safe and plus projectiles, and corner jumps that have invincible frames. Here's the low down with these.

The toughest/almost unstoppable corner escapes are:
- Outworld Marketplace right corner
- Emperor's courtyard Left corner
- Sky temple right corner
- Lin Kuei Temple left corner

The others are easy enough that the sub can react if he sees them and NJP or NJK you back in. But again delayed wakeup makes this significantly harder as sub is in recovery if he whiffs.

Also the Interactable kick is a very helpful tool and possibly one of the best corner escapes against GM. It will not freeze unless sub is far back from the clone, and it guarantees you a lot of space and plus frames to work with.

UPDATE #3- Armor the damn gap
Its baffling to me where this "tech" came from. As soon as people see the big block of ice next to sub zero, they automatically assume he's gapless. He's still doing strings into shatter and all have gaps besides f4. So please, don't let this happen to you if you have the meter.

Smoke :p

Alright that's all I have for now. Let me know what to add and/or change and I'll be updating this thread as it progresses :)




@Rolling_Toaster @flappysamyhamy @Dankster Morgan @Tom Brady @Revenant Zero @Damaja325 @SylverRye @JDM @RagingRicans @21122 @karaokelove @Bruno-NeoSpace @CrazyFingers @TheGangstaFace @M.D. @YOMI REO @Anyone struggling or bad matchup players. Please tag someone if you think this helps them out.
 
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Saltea Moonspell

"I'm a zoner, with ma boner"
Premium Supporter
People just don't know the MU. Whining little punks! Subs is fine, Toms approves it!
He needs it!
 

Parasurama

Dragon
So basically - delayed wake up in the corner and punish B2? That is the take home message right ?....
I get frozen when trying njp with the close Klone set up....

Also I think it might be taken for granted, but full screen, I feel ok, zoning Sub- like you said watching for the ex ice ball and waiting for slides.... I notice many SZ's slide just before I can block it- difficult to punish if they just slid under my projectile but I feel advantaged .
 

LaidbackOne

Scrubby nice guy
So basically - delayed wake up in the corner and punish B2? That is the take home message right ?....
I get frozen when trying njp with the close Klone set up....

Also I think it might be taken for granted, but full screen, I feel ok, zoning Sub- like you said watching for the ex ice ball and waiting for slides.... I notice many SZ's slide just before I can block it- difficult to punish if they just slid under my projectile but I feel advantaged .
Good luck punishing B2 on whiff since it has almost no recovery.
 

boba_buster

Noob saibot
D1 the walk up b33/throw mix up
Njp the 12 shatter
Block b2 and armor punish if you have a fast enough armor
3 way guess?
 

Tanno

The Fantasy is the Reality of the Mind
You just had gone and opened this thread. lol

Usually, I would let everybody to figure out a way to get out of the korner game. The wakeup attack is one option. There's another option, which wasn't mentioned in the OP. lol
 

hkriderz

Lin Kuei Scum, yellow robot enthusiast
So basically - delayed wake up in the corner and punish B2? That is the take home message right ?....
I get frozen when trying njp with the close Klone set up....

Also I think it might be taken for granted, but full screen, I feel ok, zoning Sub- like you said watching for the ex ice ball and waiting for slides.... I notice many SZ's slide just before I can block it- difficult to punish if they just slid under my projectile but I feel advantaged .
Delayed wakeup makes sub whiff when he tries to mixup instantly and reduces his clone time. Usually if he whiffs you have a chance to press buttons or take your turn. You should lab it depending on your character but that is the main take away
 

hkriderz

Lin Kuei Scum, yellow robot enthusiast
You just had gone and opened this thread. lol

Usually, I would let everybody to figure out a way to get out of the korner game. The wakeup attack is one option. There's another option, which wasn't mentioned in the OP. lol
And that is?