As a long-time gamer and streaming enthusiast, I‘m thrilled to provide this extensive 2800+ word guide to using Liu Kang in Mortal Kombat 1. Liu Kang is one of the most storied characters in fighting game history, and MK1 launched his illustrious career. In the original Mortal Kombat, Liu Kang possesses a varied repertoire of hard-hitting strikes, fiery kicks, and lethal combinations. Mastering his combos requires dedication, but rewarding victories await those who can harness the Dragon Warrior‘s true potential.
In this guide, I‘ll share my insights as a gaming geek on how to execute Liu Kang‘s most powerful combos in MK1. You‘ll learn combo fundamentals, notation, ideal starters and enders, advanced techniques, and optimal damage combos. My goal is to provide everything you need to know to start unleashing devastating kombos with Liu Kang on your quest through the Mortal Kombat tournament.
Liu Kang Overview in MK1
Before diving into combos, let‘s review Liu Kang‘s strengths in the first Mortal Kombat:
- Well-rounded normal attacks for starting combos
- Devastating special moves like Flying Kick, Fireball, and Bicycle Kick
- Relentless rushdown and pressure on the opponent
- Ability to juggle opponents in the air for big damage
- Great comeback potential with strong fatalities
Liu Kang boasts good range on his normals, specials that cover distance, and air control for keeping up pressure. His Flying Kick travels full screen to hit opponents, making it a great combo ender. Fireballs control space and Bicycle Kick pummels airborne enemies. Liu Kang can turn the tide of battle in an instant if you master his move set.
Combo Notation and Terminology
To understand Liu Kang‘s combos, you need to learn fighting game notation:
- 1 – Square on PS, X on Xbox
- 2 – Triangle on PS, Y on Xbox
- 3 – X on PS, A on Xbox
- 4 – Circle on PS, B on Xbox
- f – Forward direction
- b – Backward direction
- j – Jump/air move
Some other key terms:
- Cancel – Interrupting a move‘s recovery with another move
- Link – Chain combos with timed connections between moves
- Special – Unique character moves performed with direction + button
- Meter – Power to enhance specials into stronger "EX" versions
Now let‘s breakdown Liu Kang‘s normals and specials for combos.
Key Moves and Strings
- 1 – Fast jab
- f+1 – Advancing palm
- b+4 – Spinning sweep
- f+4 – Launching uppercut
- 11 xx Fireball – Quick punches into projectile
- f+1,2,3 – Advancing triplet palm strikes
- f+1,2 xx Flying Kick – Knockback kick string into special
- Flying Kick (f,f+3) – Liu Kang‘s best combo ender
- Fireball (b,f+1) – Zoning and juggle projectile
- Bicycle Kick (f,b,f+4) – Multi-hit aerial launcher
Now let‘s see how these can be combined into damaging combos.
Beginner Combos (8-15% Damage)
These basic combos are easy to perform for new Liu Kang players:
f+1,2 xx Flying Kick – Two palms into Flying Kick. Meter enhances Flying Kick for extra damage.
f+4, Bicycle Kick – Uppercut launcher into aerial Bicycle Kick.
b+4, Fireball – Knockdown trip into safe Fireball ender.
Intermediate Combos (15-25% Damage)
Step up your game with these extended combos:
11, 11 xx Flying Kick – Quick punches with another Flying Kick ender.
f+1,2,3 xx Bicycle Kick – Full advancing triplet into Bicycle Kick juggle.
f+4, Fireball Cancel, Flying Kick – Uppercut cancel into airborne Flying Kick.
Advanced Combos (25-35% Damage)
Maximize damage and corner carry with optimal combo routes:
f+1,2 xx Flying Kick EX, 11 xx Flying Kick – Enhanced Flying Kick bounces for aerial extension.
f+4, Fireball Cancel, Bicycle Kick EX, Jump Punch – EX Bicycle Kick allows for full air juggle.
Jump Kick, Bicycle Kick – Bread and butter air combo into Bicycle Kick.
Optimal Combos (35%+ Damage)
These are Liu Kang‘s highest damage combos:
Corner 2 Meter – f+4, Flying Kick EX, f+4, Flying Kick EX, f+4 – The classic MK1 Liu Kang juggles featuring multiple EX Flying Kicks.
Midscreen 1 Meter – f+1,2 xx Flying Kick EX, b+4 – Optimal midscreen combo converting into hard knockdown.
Krushing Blow Combo – f+4 (Krushing Blow), Flying Kick, Bicycle Kick – Cashes in on uppercut counter Krushing Blow for big damage.
Fatality Combo – 11, 11, Fatality – Simple punches into deadly Fatality finish.
I hope these insights have prepared you to start unleashing powerful kombos with the iconic Liu Kang. His versatile moveset and lethal abilities provide everything you need to rise through the Mortal Kombat tournament. Now get out there and show why the Dragon Warrior is the champion of Mortal Kombat!