Kano thread - "One dead Lin Kuei, in a tick!"


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~No charge~


Kano is one of the original members of mortal kombat. Equal parts coward, madman, and sly tactician. He's an opportunist who will capitlize on your weakness and leaves nothing to chance. He is capable of favoring both a rushdown and a ranged zoning style, though teleporters you must be wary when zoning. good combos coupled with fast specials make him a force to be reckoned with.​

Spoiler for X-ray Attack and Specials:

X-ray Attack - Base Damage: 41%. It is a grab move which means that it cannot be blocked and also cannot be combo'd into, however it has quite high damage on its own for a X-ray and it means a kano upclose has to be very carefully dealt with when he has full bars.

Ball - F,D,B,F - Base Damage: 11% (high attack), EX version is 12% but if charged for a couple seconds its first hit is unblockable. This move can travel across the entire screen and is reasonably fast. I need to check if it goes over low fireballs, if so it can be used to both close gap and punish zoners with low fireballs.

Down Ball - (in air) F,D,B,F - Base Damage: 8% (high attack), EX version is 16%. Use it similar to a dive kick, from midscreen if you jump a projectile you can punish the character before he recovers from using the ability.

Up Ball - D,F,2 - Base Damage: 11% (high attack), EX version is 13% but more importantly it turns the up ball into a up down ball that is capable of both dodging a projectile and hitting the opponent from fullscreen which Down Ball cannot (doesnt have the range). extremely fast start up and recover, and great for anti-air and gtfo me moments.

Choke - D,F,1 - Base Damage: 9% (high attack), Ex version is 14%. This move looks like a command throw but in fact it is considered a strike as it is blockable, but this also means it can be combo'd into, good for fun, demoralize opponent maybe, but by itself its unremarkable. however it can be used as a cancel if your combo is being blocked and your at risk for punishment. cancel out of your combo into choke and it will push you and the opponent apart a bit, helps prevent immediate retaliation.

Knife Throw - D,B,2 - Base Damage: 9% (high attack), Ex version is 14%. This is a very fast projectile with decent recovery time. its speed coupled with kano's Up Ball makes him a difficult opponent to pressure.

Air Throw- (in air) R1 (sry, using ps3, whats the universal command for this?) - Base Damage: 9%. Standard air throw, but its always good to have one.

Spoiler for Notations:

1=Front Punch (square or x)
2=Back Punch (triangle or y)
3=Front Kick (X or A)
4=Back Kick (Circle or B)
Ex=enhanced version
J.=Jump/While in air
NJP=neutral jump punch

Spoiler for Strategy:

VS. Keepaway/Zoning: Kano is somewhat versatile so it ultimately depends on the specific character the opponent is using to zone you. Most zoning Kano can zone right back with his knives as they are very fast and can be thrown again the moment your knives in the air hit your opponent, so you can pretty much fill the screen with knives. With someone like Noob or sub zero it can be harder as trading with them results in you being disabled briefly. Not to worry however because kano has the tools to close the gap as well. One of the best tools for this is his Ex Up Ball as it can go over projectiles and hit your opponent, closing the gap in one motion. Obviously you can still resort to old fashioned dashblocking and timed jumpins, you can also Down Ball to close ground/punish zoning depending on your range.

VS. Teleporters: It can be a little tricky especially if its a zoning teleporter. as you have to be wary of them baiting your knives for a tele punish. Typically kano will want to be in close, you can still use knives sometimes but use them much more sparingly as they will more reasily be punished. But as with any teleporter a blocked tele can give you a full combo, a tele that just tele's doesnt hit is usually fairly unsafe and can be punished almost on reaction so long as your not in the middle of completing a attack animation, just keep these things in mind. again Up Ball and Down Ball are your friends here, especially Ex Up Ball.

Anti-Air: Up Ball and more Up Ball, its anti-air almost as good as noobs upknee. they jump in...up ball simple enough. I think the only person you might be hesitant to Up Ball as anti air would be kung Lao.

Mix-Up Game: F+3 is a low hit that combos into B+3 for a pop-up juggle, very nasty if not used too much vs smart opponents. He has a not as good overhead in the form of B+2. Not as good because its a bit slow, leads into 3 and creates a little space. While only having one overhead and one low, the low is fast and can be a part of his bnb combos. his sweep also has a unusually long range and can actually be used from starting distance.

Spoiler for Kombos:

Note: im just gonna put my BnB for mid and wall for the moment ill add any new ones people post with so long as they are A) different from ones already on and B) a explanation on why you use it would be great though not exactly required :)

Meterless Kombos:

2,1,2 dash 2,1,2 dash 2,1,2 upball 10 hits 30%. kinda a braindead combo as its all the same move, but you need to wait a sec after first dash so the opponent is low enough you dont whiff your last 2, then immediatly input after second dash.

2,1,2,dash,2,1,2 (pops up higher second time),B+2,F+3upball/knifethrow/ball-10 hits depending on finisher, roughly 30% damage again depending on finisher. I find it easier to start with 2,1,2 then B+1,1,2 for combo starter in midfield

B+1,1,2 dash 2,1,2 dash B+1,2 xx upball9 hits, 33% (provided by nothingrhymeswithcircus) just have to be kinda quick getting the 2,1,2 out after dash which for me...is taking a lot of practice lol

F+3,B+2 WALK forward 2,1,2 2,1,2 dash upball 9 hits, 31% damage (provided by nothingrhymeswithcircus) absolutely evil combo because the first hit is a low.

B1,1,2 dash 2,1,2 dash F+1,1xx choke 9 hits, 31% damage. doing F+1,2 doesnt change the damage because of scaling. in truth the choke is quite weak damage at the end, but its used more for chokes effect rather then its damage. keep in mind any bnb combo string that uses 2,1,2 can be cut off if 2,1,2 is first or second in the combo string by f+1,1xx choke meaning depending on the situation you can push them away with upball, or keep them close with choke. choke is usually a few % less but id imagine its positioning can be good enough this doesnt matter.

[CORNER ONLY] B+1,1,2 2,1,2 2,1,2 B+1,2 xx upball (provided by nothingrhymeswithcircus)12 hits, 37% just need to train yourself for when to time the 2,1,2's and its good

[CORNER ONLY] j.1,B+1,1,2,2,1,2,3,3,choke, 37% damage and pretty easy to pull off, there is a slight delay needed between the B+1,1,2 and the 2,1,2. too early and you whiff the last hit, too late and you just whiff.

Meter Kombos:
i havent been playing enough to mess with the meter kombos as i like to save them for ex upball to close in or for breakers, any given ill gladly delete this and add them.

X-ray Kombos?!:

I know i said there were no X-ray kombos because its a grab, and thats true, there are however a few moves that "stagger" the opponent long enough for you to X-ray them.

1,1,X-ray 44%

F+1,1,X-ray 47%

F+1,2,X-ray 49%

Spoiler for Fatalities

Heartbreak B,D,B,F, 1 (sweep distance)

Eat Your Heart Out D,D,F,B,4 (sweep distance)

Stage Fatality U,U,B,3 Best to hold block while inputting to avoid jump

Babality F,D,D,3 (jump distance)

Spoiler for Kano Kombo/Awesomeness Videos

I really like this video as it shows a good breakdown of how kanos kombos work, maybe not needed for the advanced player, but for someone new to kano it helps.

If anyone has any videos they think should be put up here share them and we can get them put up.
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Re: Kano thread-"One dead Lin Kuei, in a tick!"

Spoiler for Kano's Strings

2,1,2-your midcombo go to string as it helps you keep the juggle going. you can start with this but its a poor choice as other strings are more safe or hit something other then high.
b+1,1,2-arguably his safest string, this is the starter for your bnb.
b+1,2-when i want to finish my combo with upball, i use this string at the end, seems to be the best damage.
F+3,B+2-first hit is low, leads into a juggle, this can be used as his alternate starter as it can result into a bit of a mindgame, and makes JiP,F+3 pretty scary.
F+3,3-doesnt combo like the above, and like the above cannot be canceled into a special, good for making space if it connects but i think the above string is all around better. maybe if this one hit low twice...
1,1,2-1,1 is extremely fast, tho i have found almost no reason to use the full string. 1,1 however is good pressure to run into things like tick throws, pressure, training, etc. can be put into combo juggles as well but there are better strings to do that.
f+1,1-ive yet to find a real use for this string as its related string is better it seems
f+1,2-i use this to finish my combo into chokes as the timing is pretty easy imo and its good damage.
b+2,3-b+2 is his somewhat slow overhead but still useful. leading into 3 used to force the person to stand, it doesnt appear to anymore, so its not as useful.
b+2,f+1-knocks them farther back, more damage, can still be linked into choke to keep them close, link into knives and you are almost at full screen! for more zoning!
3,3-this feels like it should have a use, i havent really found anything tho.

if i missed/did anything incorrectly feel free to post/msg me about it. ill change it.

Spoiler for Kano's advanced strategies Q&A

Q: How do i do my combos on a blocked teleport (the rolling animation)!
A: there are multiple ways. a easy one is b+2,f+1xxupball for 21% damage. the other more difficult way is to wait for the small timeframe between them landing and them being able to block, its a tight window but if you net it you can manage a full combo as if they were standing.

Q: How do i keep up pressure!
A: kano has some nice strings but a lot of his pressure is from playing smart rather then dialing a combo. he has a very long sweep (can even sweep from starting spot when fight begins). he can cut nearly any of his strings short into choke which nullifies the players ability to roll. His b+2 is slow but has amazing range if used before they are getting up it can stop them. choke itself has some crazy tracking as it can usually catch jumpaways as well.

notes for keeping pressure
-jumpin punch, know it, love it
-f+3,b+2 string, low hit juggle
-b+1,1,2 string, safe on block
-choke, should always be prioritized over upball in strings when you want to keep pressure, ALWAYS. it prevents roll away and you start closer to the opponent. upball when you want them to get back or in a corner.
-jumpin kick+airgrab, this is a great surprise as it can even be done with the kick landing near the ground (hiting the person in the knee area) and like choke prevents rolls, easy setup into wakeup mindgames. a good strategy is to double tap the grab button, so that if kick hits you airgrab, if its blocked you land and immediatly grab, tho must be careful of fast players with fast normals.

Q: how do i do kano's wakeup game?
A: thanks to karaokelove we actually have a nice little breakdown of your options on a opponents wakeup

-rock/paper/scissors (dubbed by karaokelove) is a simple but effective strategy to explain the wakeup mindgame of kano. it utilizes most of whats listed above in the pressure answer in a unpredictable pattern.

essentially sweep is long enough it can be used safely vs certain wakeups, dash in, sweep, after this you get to decide what to do next. do you sweep again to train them to block low? do you pull a safe string b+1,1,2? do you perform a grab? do you pull a b+2 which if timed correctly you are already in the swing animation before they get up, and it connects (similar range as sweep). essentially you have them in a guessing game, block low for sweep risks eating a grab/overhead, stand blocking risks a sweep/grab. they cannot roll after a grab/air grab/choke remember this, you can b+2,f+1xxchoke to keep the wakeup game going. if they try and roll/jump back on wakeup you can get in a jumpin kick+airgrab to keep the pressure still!

obviously training is important, try more b+2 and jumpin kick+airgrabs to train them to block high, then you can nab them with a jumpin punch (for chip damage if they block it) into a f+3,b+2 juggle. if you train them to block low then obviously you can overhead. vs certain chars that do not have extremely strong wakeup options kano can keep someone in the wakeup guessing game almost infinitly.

however, i suggest abandoning the wakeup game somewhat vs chars with very strong wakeups like raiden/lao/kang etc and employing a more defensive style. bait/punish is your best option here probably

Q: wtf is the deal with choke?
A: many people dont realize the implications of what choke can manage. its a untechable (cannot be gotten out of once started) throw. this means that if it lands the opponent will not be able to roll on wakeup, this may seem like a silly thing to care about but its quite big, essentially it means he can limit their options on wakeup with this move. any string he has can be canceled early into choke. This will make that string "safe" on block if you found yourself getting blocked. this is another key feature to it, the abiltiy to make any string he has safe on block. it also has some interesting hit properties as it can grab jumpaways (the person will look like he is sucked in slightly back to kano for a choke). when you want to keep offensive pressure, you end with choke, nuff said.

Q:how do i deal with players that duck my knives?
A: suffice to say you cant zone if you cant hit them. if your at a lifeloss/time running out and they are content with just sitting there ducking yoru knives the best option is to probably straightball right after a knife is thrown. another thing you can do is throw a ex knife (will hit him when crouched) and then straight ball (will make straight ball a bit safer to use as it will be less likely to be read)

Q: how do i play kano defensively?
A:i already touched on how to keep pressure and his wakeup games, but not his defensive strats. essentially his defense relies on his knives and his upballs similar to noob saibots shadows and upknee. you ZONE (not spam) with his knives, alternating the speeds at which you send them out, dash in, dash out to help stagger them etc making it harder to advance. if they get too close you can upball them to make room again. its a effective strat that is made even better with upballs being the opposite input of knives, which means manytimes when you get a teleport on you you will end up upballing them rather then throwing a knife. keep in mind the range of his sweep and overhead as well as their range allows them to be used quite defensively as well, and the fact that his b+1,1,2 string is safe on block helps fake them into thinking you want to pressure them should they get too close.
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Immortal Reaver

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Re: Kano thread-"One dead Lin Kuei, in a tick!"

Nice job, I like the info you have. Most of these character threads are horrible, just showing the moveslist and stuff like that. I like when people actually put some useful info and effort into them.


New member
Re: Kano thread-"One dead Lin Kuei, in a tick!"

ty! thats sorta how i felt, though im grateful that they made them at all even if i felt they were bare boned. Kano is one of my mains now and i noticed he didnt have his own thread, figured id compile what i know, and add anything new that the community here knows that i either forgot or didnt. i must take care of some things, ill go over it again in a bit, im sure there are some grammatical errors in it lol.


New member
Re: Kano thread-"One dead Lin Kuei, in a tick!"

Very good ! Kano is a force rising online, excellent character, very underrated.


New member
Re: Kano thread-"One dead Lin Kuei, in a tick!"

well to be specific i put down that its just a fun move on its own, it can however be used to end a combo or to end a combo early. bout all i know for it though. i was actually hoping youd correct me if i gotten anything wrong, ive only been playing him a few days doing research during that time. figured youd see this eventually :p

edit: it also can be used if your combo is being blocked to cancel into it to gain some room between you and opponent. probably shoulda added that bit.
Re: Kano thread-"One dead Lin Kuei, in a tick!"


Bunnies and Kittens.

President Obama in a speedo.

The laughter of children.

Herpes on your buttcheek.
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Immortal Reaver

New member
Re: Kano thread-"One dead Lin Kuei, in a tick!"

The opponent can't roll away after they are thrown or Choked by Kano, so ending certain small strings with it and the B2F1 string with it is always a good idea. His options when the opponent can't roll away vs the majority of the cast is VERY VERY strong and VERY VERY hard to deal with if the Kano player guesses even remotely right on what you're going to do.

I wouldn't even worry about it dude, most people think that JC's nut punch is useless also but it's actually great.


New member
Re: Kano thread-"One dead Lin Kuei, in a tick!"

salright nothingrhymeswithcircus, its a new game many players like to hold onto there little tricks. thanks for the info all the same!

edit: if you want you can share with us your bnb's unless they too hold great secrets
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Re: Kano thread-"One dead Lin Kuei, in a tick!"

B112, dash, 212, dash, b12 xx UpBall

F32, WALK forward, 212, 212, Dash, Upball

Wall: B112, 212, 212, B12 xx Upball


New member
Re: Kano thread-"One dead Lin Kuei, in a tick!"

F32? im unable to get this to work ingame, f+3 is the low hit, but 2 doesnt do anything then. unless you meant F+3,B+2 popup

edit: just tested it, i think thats what you meant as i could get the combo you listed to work if i did it like that
Re: Kano thread-"One dead Lin Kuei, in a tick!"

oops, yea. F3B2

EDIT: I'm going to go back and edit my past post... I feel all raped in the inside people reading my Kano strategies lol.


New member
Re: Kano thread-"One dead Lin Kuei, in a tick!"

teleporters, the fact that he only has 1 low and 1 overhead, the overhead is a little slow.

should be said that the weakness to teleporters is if you try and zone them and they play smart.