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Forty Minutes with Killer Instinct’s Omen, the Herald of Gargos

Killer Instinct, the rebooted fighting game from the ’90s, has finally revealed its bonus Season 2 character, Omen, the Herald of Gargos. The reveal was a nearly hour-long livestream, which you can watch above.

There’s a lot to talk about.

The developers say Omen is fundamentally quite similar to Jago and Shadow Jago, the latter of which they paired the new character up with for the initial demonstration. At first they show off basic moves, the light, medium, and hard kicks and punches, and then move on to showing off his Shadow moves, which are pretty impressive.

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Three things, his wings, his Shadow abilities, and an attack that uses all three stocks, are unique about Omen.

The wings make him quite “floaty”, as they put it, which means he can stay in the air longer than other characters. This gives players more aerial options for combat.

Omen can fire off eleven different kinds of Shadow projectiles, which behave randomly; some scoot along the ground, others do a loop-de-loop, others yet race for the other side of the screen, some bounce up and down, and others still wobble left and right. Players, both those playing Omen and their opponents, will have to get used to recognizing which projectile has been loosed.

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Another move uses the projectiles as a floating shield around the character, and a rapid Shadow kick will rapid-fire a series of these projectiles at foes.

Players can daisy chain Omen’s heavy projectile moves for interesting combinations. Executing them in quick succession will make the projectiles larger and cause them to last for two hits, instead of one.

Omen also has an attack, featured above, that uses all three stocks, and turns all of the foe’s health into white health, meaning that players could potentially do up to 100% damage with follow-up attacks.

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That’s not all. Omen can cancel any action through a Shadow-based ability; and can even turn into Shadow, which allows players to evade attacks, at the cost of a full Shadow Meter bar.

Omen’s Ultra was forbidden to be shown, which funnily enough led to the guy playing him losing his match, but we did get a good, long look at everything else.

Omen is the bonus character for Season 2, and comes with the Combo Breaker or the Ultra Edition of the game; Microsoft does not plan to sell him separately. He’s not a full character, so he doesn’t get alternative costumes, but he does have two accessory sets, and he does get his own music. We still don’t know exactly when he’ll be ready for action.

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At the end of the stream, the developers also revealed some balancing changes that will be made soon. A full around-the-world with Jago now gives players an Instinct Meter bonus. Fulgore’s Devastation Beam has been tweaked, and now even does damage when blocked; and Hard Punch and Hard Kick together now charge his Devastation Beam, too.

One question remains: when is Killer Instinct coming to PC?

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Dimi Gronnings

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With over ten years' experience as an editor, Dimi is Niche Gamer's Managing Editor. He has indefinitely put a legal career on hold in favor of a life of video games: priorities.