"I am fetch machine!"
|Vlad - Zib|
|"Zib is good dog."|
Vlad is one of the original six characters of Rising Thunder. Representing Russia and piloted by the intelligent dog Zib, Vlad is a zoning-type character with various options like missiles and an invincible uppercut to keep the opponent where he wants them. His greatest asset, however, is his air superiority, using his jetpack for temporary flight and hovering; this grants him increased options for mix-ups, approach and overall control of the match. No other mech can currently match Vlad's aerial capabilities, lending a unique niche to this iron cosmonaut.
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|In-game quote||Translation||When they say it|
|"Zib play dead!"||Round loss|
|"The world is now a safer place."||Round win|
|"космическая гонка! Takeoff!"
|"Space race! Takeoff!"||Upon using "Space Race" Overdrive|
|"Have you seen my ball? ...Let's play."||Start of match|
|"Zib hug you!"||Forward Throw|
|"Zib, down!"||Backward Throw|
Vlad is a large, egg-shaped mech that stands as one of the largest mechs in the game. Most of its joints are on freely-rotating pivots, allowing for full 360-degree rotation of limbs at potentially high speeds. Despite this, Vlad's overall movement is relatively stiff and rigid, visible in its gait and inability to run. It's also so bulky that it doesn't crouch so much as sit down on its behind when it takes a lower position. That said, parts of the mech can retract inside the frame, such as the legs hiding under the body when Vlad goes for a jet-powered uppercut or - most notably - the little red (formerly Russian-flag-colored) flag that pops up out of the top of its head. It also has a small jetpack on its back for temporary flight, its major calling card. As inspiration goes, most agree that Vlad is plainly inspired by Gigantor, the original giant "space-age robot."
Unlike other mecha, Vlad is the only dog-piloted mech in the game. Vlad's pilot is Zib, a super-intelligent dog from Russia. Zib is able to "talk" thanks to special technology that verbalizes Zib's thoughts. Note that even though Zib is hyper-intelligent by dog standards, he's not that bright in the grand scheme of things. That said, Zib acts much like many other dogs do: he is playful, goofy, and good-willed, with unwavering loyalty towards his allies and a short attention span. He believes himself to be a protector of the planet, meaning he ultimately has good intentions. He's also very good at tricks and even developing his own technology.
Theme Music Edit
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Movement Options Edit
Vladimir has an average-speed walk and a normal jump arc. Vlad can dash a set distance either forward or backward with a double-tap in the desired direction, however he can not run. If you tap the up direction while in the air he will fly up toward your opponent, while draining his fuel meter. After Vlad lands any heavy attack he can Jump Cancel(JC) using his fuel meter to extend combos. Use Vlad's jetpack low to the ground to attack from unfamiliar angles.
By tapping Up,Up,Down+H quickly when standing in front of an opponent, Vlad can do semi-instantaneous crossups using his flight. With certain timings, these can beat reversal DPs.
|s.M(c) > s.H||Vlad's target combo, leaves opponents in the air.||Very effective when the opponent is in the corner, able to perform a second M > H after.|
|f.M||A forward-moving belly bump.||Goes over lows, however, the low invulnerability is not instantaneous, and the hitting frames can be low-profiled by moves like Crow's cr.L|
|cr.M||A short slide. Vlad sticks his foot in the air.||Can be useful as an anti-air, but lacks utility up close.|
|cr.L||Vlad pokes at your toes with his finger.||Vlad's fastest low option. Great counterpoke. Combos into Clobbering Rush.|
|cr.H||Vlad sticks his leg out. Reaches a fair distance.||Vlad's longest reaching and most damaging low option in some cases. Can catch backdashes. Done immediately after a fly-cancelled s.H (Cancel, land immediately, do cr.H) as a mixup from his standard fly cancel into j.H route|
|Sputnik Torpedo||Alpha||Projectile that can be used in the air and ground.||Use aerial Sputnik Torpedo directly above Chel's "Estrella" to punish zoning.|
|Cosmonaut Liftoff||Beta||"Shoryuken" styled move with no horizontal movement.||Invincible on Startup. Anti-Air,Chargeable by holding down Beta. Invincible in the air after charging.|
|Clobbering Rush||Gamma||Four hit cyclone that ends in a hard knockdown.||Anti-Air and Combo Ender.|
Meter and Super Edit
|Space Race||Spacebar/L2||Low damage super that ends in a bounce-up.||Cosmonaut Liftoff and Clobbering Rush combo into this. After firing a Sputnik Torpedo, you can anti-air those who jump over it with a super cancel.|
|Name||Inputs||What it's useful for||Other notes||Example video(s)|
|Bread and Butter
Optional Super Finish
|s.H(c) > JC* > H > s.H(c) > Sputnik Rocket xx KA > s.H > Cloberring rush xx Super > c.H||Jumping in with an overhead/crossup can lead into this combo, and simply conditioning your opponent to block overheads and changing to a c.L into S3 into Super instead when they get to comfortable.||JC*=Jumpcancel||https://youtu.be|
|No KA Low Poke||c.L > c.L > Clobbering Rush||Really simple meterless panic combo when you have a situation to punish but were too caught off guard to pull something off really damaging, the hard KD should give you a second to mixup.|
|BnB No KA||Jumping H > JC > H > c.L x3 xx Clobbering Rush||A reliable double overhead that leads to a low string into a hard knockdown.||https://youtu.be/|
Main cast Edit
Observe Edge's reaction to your first few missiles, if he only blocks them and does not believe he can cut them, then feel free to play the zoning game, if he has shown himself to cut them, then it may be a viable tactic to KA your grounded missiles to punish the cuts. If he uses his command run, Cosmonaut Liftoff will beat out both slide and overhead, but be careful as to not get baited by a run-stop.
Against Dauntless, DO NOT end a blockstring with Clobbering Rush, as she can punish with stand light punch into a special. Otherwise, take advantage of her lack of an invincible uppercut on wakeup, with tactics such as crossover and jetpacking twice to stall out dust breaker, and punish with bnb.
When against this zoner, use your Sputnik Torpedo in the air right above Chel's projectile to beat her fireball game. As her projectile's cooldown only resets on hit/block, you can tap your jetpack right outside of her DP range to fly over the projectile and bait DP and punish. Feel free to jump in and apply pressure for the next few seconds before resetting back to neutral fullscreen or mixup.
Your job during this matchup is always reset to neutral until you have an advantage. You can usually do this by catching a wild Crow with a Cosmonaut Liftoff when he's too busy applying pressure to hold back a bit. If you're having too much trouble take Kinetic Deflect over Kinetic Advance for the runback. Avoid approaching with jumping, as even with max jet pack usage you cannot fly over his disks. But a Sputnik Torpedo in mid air (while falling) has been known to be effective against his zoning since it has a pretty good chance of avoiding a collision with the disc mid and late in the arc. After changing the pace via a few well timed torpedoes (or even better, pressure in your favor), an opening is bound to pop up. If you do not want to play the fireball game since his projectile can break it while still maintaining hits, then you should either stick to mid screen footsies or stay up close after a knockdown to abuse his lack of a reversal. It's important to recognise which arc will a thrown disc take, since it's possible to avoid long range disc by simply walking forward which will also aid in closing distance. And remember, his discs are NOT overheads.
Use jetpack near ground to bait aerial command grab, once it's on cooldown jump in and mixup due to Talos' lack of an anti air normal. Do not jump in unless you know for a fact that it is on cooldown or you're in for a world of hurt.
This is Vlad's easiest matchup by far. Jump back air S1 can check Talos's approach at long range. Raw S3 in neutral will beat most of Talos's armor moves and can't be punished. If you anticipate and block f+H, Vlad can punish with far st.H xx Hover j.M, cr.H for 200+ damage and a knockdown. Use S1 KA up-forward after a knockdown to set up a meaty projectile into a hover mixup; Talos has virtually no options to deal with this, and if you mix him up correctly you can easily stun him or put him into the same situation. Vlad can easily escape Talos's knockdown game with well-timed DP KA up-forward into either damage or pressure with hover. Keeping your distance and checking Talos's approach with raw S3 in neutral is enough to set the pace of the match.
The mirror is an interesting match of who can play neutral better. Vlad's DP is very good at getting him out of his own mixup game, so as long as you know how to block Vlad's mixup it's very hard for anyone to open each other up. Raw S3 is crucial to getting knockdown momentum as Vlad can only punish it with cr.L and only at the right distance. Be tricky with S1 placements, and use S1 KA to seal the opponent's ability to DP with block stun to set up any offensive momentum. The player who plays footsies better, has better defense, baits DPs properly, and uses trickier hover mixups will often come out on top.
Downloadable characters Edit
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Below is a list of changes to the character from version to version.
Build 1238 Edit
- Vlad’s cockpit has been retooled with 20% softer blankets.
Build 1263 Edit
- Uncharged S2 block stun reduced to 15 frames.
- Charged S2 block stun reduced to 17 frames.
- Cleaned up camera cuts in Talos and Vlad’s Overdrive attacks.
Build 1292 Edit
- New S1 variant! Revolutionary Rocket calls down a missile strike from the sky. Vlad decides the timing in advance, but that information is hidden from the opponent.
- Vlad’s Overdrive now destroys all his projectiles when it connects, so they can no longer knock opponents away from the remaining Overdrive hits.
- Vlad’s hover meter now refills between rounds, and disappears properly when full.
- Vlad’s Sputnik Torpedo cancel window has been standardized to match other projectile specials.
- Zib has a new small flag.
Build 1312 Edit
- Revolutionary Rocket now deals block damage properly.
- Revolutionary Rocket no longer pushes Vlad away from cornered blocking opponents.
- Air Revolutionary Rocket no longer fails to spawn the target when landing just before it fires.
- Zib got fleas.
Build 1330 Edit
- Air Sputnik Missile now deals block damage properly.
- Reduced startup of c.M by 1 frame.
- After days in his lab, Zib successfully created a zero point energy collar to eradicate fleas once and for all.
Alpha to Beta Edit
Beta to Retail Edit
- In an interview for PC Gamer, developer Seth Killian stated that Zib is super-intelligent for a dog, but “actually not that smart.”
- The name Zib belonged to an actual Soviet space dog. Zib is a Russian acronym for "Substitute for Missing Bolik", "Замена Исчезнувшему Болику" (Zamena Ischeznuvshemu Boliku).
- Vlad's design appears to be heavily influenced by 1964 mecha Gigantor.