So the first public alpha for Yatagarasu's second revision was released to the Kickstarter backers today. Here's what I've noticed so far:
Kou and Shou
Appear to play the same. Haven't found any alterations to their previous combo theory (which is mostly cr.LK cr.LK uppercut xx super anyway). Their fireballs have been redrawn to be much larger. Hopefully the hitboxes are larger as well. Uppercuts also have fancy fire effects now. This might have increased hitbox size.
EX Scourge Impact (623+Punches, the projectile reflector) no longer combos into his antiair grab super. Heavy Scourge Impact might have more frame advantage. That or I just got the link into cr.HP perfectly every time.
So 623HP, cr.HP 623PP st.HP still does 20 000 damage. This alone is huge. cr.HP into EX dropkick still carries to the corner too.
Scourge Impact also has a cool new shockwave visual. Whoosh!
Still appears to work the same. You still have to do EX j.214Punch if you want the grimy command run crossunder/fake crossunder mixups.
Damage on her command grabs has been reduced. That's sad.
More importantly, there have been serious nerfs to all her light normals. st.LP no longer chains into itself or st.LK. cr.LK no longer chains into itself. cr.LP no longer chains into itself or cr.LK. None of these combo into Chun-li Super either. This is not only a serious nerf to her hitconfirms (now you can only do a single cr.LK into 214LK), but her pressure and mixup as well. She does less damage to your guard bar now. She can't adjust when she feels like teleporting to make it ambiguous which side she'll appear on. She probably deserved this, but seeing hefty nerfs in any game usually make me sad.
I haven't fiddled with the rest of the cast to find stuff yet. My Jet always sucked anyway. Instead let's talk about the nearly complete first additional character: Azure.
His normals don't have anything particularly exciting to mention, bar his lack of a beefy antiair. This doesn't matter much as we'll see.
First up, he has a 236K teleport. Doesn't appear to have any invincibility. EX is faster. They're like Hanzos but move further. Good for long-range tick throws. He has a grab super, so this is fine.
214K is like Elena's Wallet Smash or whatever it's called. Leaping kick that blows up lows. Only EX hits overhead. HK hits low. LK whiffs opponents, leading for a tick into super throw. Meterless ones can be used in juggle combos for air resets. EX knocks down on aerial opponents, but merely has frame advantage on hit (need to test on block) on grounded. You can certainly go for a throw after it. As far as I can tell, these are his only overheads besides the universal one.
cr.HK combos into Light Wallet Smash at max range.
236P is Geese Howard's Reppuken. As far as I can tell, you cannot combo into it in any way. It's slow and janky, which is exactly what you want a fireball to be in a game with parries. Toss reppuken at full screen, advance and blow them up with the grab super or sweep if they parry it. You can also cancel the fireball startup into EX teleport, making for even better parry baiting.
214P appeared to be a counter to me at first. Then I set the dummy to jump and realised it was just a Makoto style antiair punch with a horrible horizontal reach. This thing juggles for a million years if it hits. EX has a better hitbox. Heavy is slower but more damaging. In the corner you can do three of these in a row, or two and then a Wallet Smash or super.
If the active part of the move makes contact with another grounded attack, it'll trade with the opponent getting launched like they were airborne. Timing's precise, but it's a nice thing to have.
I envision lots of tossing a fireball then dashing/teleporting and swatting people with this if they jump. Using the HP version to mess up their parry timing.
j.236P is Geese Howard's Shippuken. HP is the usual 45 degree angle. EX is two fireballs, one at a shallow angle and another at a steep. LP is pretty unique for air fireballs in that it just moves horizontally. Sneaky way to catch people trying to neutral jump your regular ones.
You can tiger knee the air fireball. This makes you superjump forward with a really shallow horizontal reach. In other words, you get SF4 Ibuki crossup kunai. This crosses up in the corner. Damn good tool.
I already mentioned his super grab. It's a grab that is super. HCBx2 and punch to do. Has a Raging Demon animation on successful hit. Not much else to say about it at this point.
His other super is QCFx2/236236 and Punch. Shoots out three reppukens like Grant's antiair fireball kick thing in Mark of the Wolves. Or perhaps Mina's 421A from Samurai Shodown 5S. They go up then land a certain distance away depending on the button you push. Sadly they hit mid.
The antiair punches combo into this in the corner. At midscreen though, AA punch xx Super will position the reppukens to land as a meaty on the opponent. Since this game has guard crush attacks, it means that AA punch leads to full damage on the arrows.
I tried doing tricks like sweep, super then meaty guard crush. The super is too slow for that, but if you're fighing someone with no reversals and who respects you too much, a couple of crouch jabs then the guard crush should work.
I think this tool is good without being overpowering. Like a weaker Aegis Reflector unblockable on a character with other options.
So to summarise, he's got a bunch of cool tricks that are good for blowing up parries (which is what you want someone in this game to have), but lacks a serious damage option on grounded opponents. You'll be doing a lot of swatting with HP and sweep.
Guess we know who's going to be top tier for this patch at least.