Being a legacy character, Green Lantern is still very similar to his Injustice 1 incarnation. Early impressions from other people are saying that he’s overall better, possibly even top 5. This is obviously taken with a grain of salt, even from the people who got it early, but I can see where they’re coming from. I myself am not good enough or knowledgable enough to make these judgements with confidence. That said, I could see him being overall better, the same, and worse all at the same time. I’m definitely wait-and-see on this. I do still have some early impressions based on my endeavors in training mode. I have yet to play any real matches (AI doesn’t count), so definitely take this with a HUGE grain of salt.
Combo wise and setup wise, he’s basically the same. Just a few things to adapt to here and there. j3 and f3 still have dirty crossup potential when setup right. The removal of the turbine and Oa’s Rocket move (replaced with the new bf1 projectile) takes away some setups and combos, but it’s not that big of a deal. I never knew these back when I first played Injustice 1, so I’m actually just learning most of them now anyways. He still has VERY dirty setups and he can still do pretty decent damage if you want to.
f3 can’t really be used as an OH starter now because it has been slowed down significantly, making it very react-able…in theory. You can still use it make sure your opponent is awake or meter burn it to blowup wakeups. However, it’s primary use as a mixup will now be as a crossup with the right setup. It is still plus on block (as is b3), so that’s always good too. His OH mixups will now almost solely come from f2d1/f2 delay b1.
b13 still exists and is still (likely) one of the best buttons in the game. One difference now is that the 3 will now come out on whiff, which is good. That extra bit of distance it covers will make b1 harder to whiff punish. A mistimed attempt to whiff punish the b1 will cause the opponent to eat the launching 3 part of the string.
His new special moves are interesting. The turbine, Rocket Power, Oa’s Rocket, and the minigun have all been removed.
The Oa’s Rocket projectile has been replaced by a new, somewhat similar projectile that has a new animation. The 3 major differences are the meter burn properties, the way trait affects it, and the aerial versions. MB Oa’s Rocket would launch the opponent back towards GL, allowing for a full combo. The new projectile is just a beam that knocks the opponent down fullscreen. The saving grace is that is is EXTREMELY fast. I don’t think trait affected Oa’s Rocket at all, but it does affect the new projectile. Pressing back or forward after the motion (bf1) will cause it to be slower or fast respectively. Air Oa’s Rocket arced downwards while the air new projectile goes straight horizontally, like the ground version. Overall, this is probably a bit of a nerf, if for no other reason because MB Oa’s Rocket lead to a full combo while the MB beam does not. MB beam is also -5 while MB Oa’s Rocket was plus. The beam is still very useful, just not as good overall.
Pretty much replacing Rocket Power is the battery bomb. I’m still not quite sure how I feel about this move yet. Unlike Rocket Power, battery bomb just appears on the screen depending on where you wanted it (close, medium, far). Normal battery bomb will splat the opponent, MB allows for a combo but can be difficult, and MB trait battery bomb easily allows for a full combo. Also, unlike Rocket Power, battery bomb is actually unsafe but still has the huge gap. The MB is safe, but -4. As far as pressure goes, it’s definitely a worse move but it seems like it’s better for zoning.
A completely new move is the wall. It nullifies projectiles and is a new wakeup move. The normal version is unsafe, but the MB is safe at -1 and has a lot of pushback, I believe in b1 range though I’ll have to test that. On hit, the normal one leaves the opponent staggered/standing and the MB one knocks them fullscreen. Though the removal of the turbine takes away some setups and minimal air mobility, this move seems more useful overall. As a projectile nullifier, it’s only good against single projectiles that you can somewhat react to, but it’s still nice to have.
He also has a new projectile that is basically Tremor’s low rolling rock from MKX. It’s a low so there is some potential mixups between b12 OH or b1 low rock, though this is risky as it is unsafe on block. In trait, the MB allows for a full combo. This is a nice tool to have.
The only special move that stayed was Lantern’s Might. It works exactly the same as it did before but I’m pretty sure it has less range now. Obviously a nerf, but not a big deal since you shouldn’t really be throwing it out randomly if you’re competent (which I am not lol). I believe it’s also less reliable as an anti-air now, but d2 should more than suffice as an anti-air.
The only special move I truly miss is the minigun. It was a safe special that you could cancel off of b13, making it good for pressure and zoning. I’m fine with specials not being plus but now GL doesn’t have a meterless special he an cancel b13 into on block. Even the MB options aren’t really worth it. This will definitely hurt his game a fair amount, but he still has plenty of other options so I probably just have to adapt. b23 is still a plus mid (+3) and now 2213 is +1, so that’s a decent option too. Stagger strings will probably be more of a thing now too.
This was GL’s primary weakness in Injustice 1. But now, his jump arc seems better (not as low) and his forward dash is definitely vastly improved. It’s much faster and I think covers more distance. I think his backdash might have been nerfed in range, but don’t quote me on that. The removal of turbine gets rid of some limited air mobility with a pseudo-air dash, but it doesn’t seem like it’ll be that big of a deal. But overall, his mobility seems better.
That said, it seems like GL will still lose to very strong zoners like Deadshot. His own zoning is not fast enough to deal with strong zoners. Now that I’m finally taking a fighting game seriously, I’m going to find a character that can cover strong zoners. I’ll deal with other bad MUs, but getting completely zoned out is not something I really want to deal with. It’s too early to truly talk about MUs just yet, but I am seriously looking at Darkseid, Supergirl, and/or Deadshot to cover GL’s bad MUs. I still have Superman to fall back on too since he’s almost completely copy-pasted from Injustice 1. The other characters I’m seriously interested in (Scarecrow and Swamp Thing) seem to get zoned out even harder, so they might just be for fun. I’ll see how things turn out in the long run, but that’s my plan for now.
As a character, I think GL will still be good for the same reasons he was in Injustice 1. Where he ends up, tier-wise, is yet to be seen. I’ve been pretty disappointed with the overall lack of GL players, particularly those on YouTube and Twitch, so it’s harder to learn off watching others. Don’t know why, but I thought there’d be a lot more given that he’s a legacy character. At the same time, there weren’t a huge amount in Injustice 1 either. Maybe if he is actually top 5 or whatever then maybe more people will pick him up. Regardless, there’s still plenty of players I can learn from but will still have to learn mostly from just playing the game. But I particularly want to see a GL at high(ish) level.
Overall, I’m still liking Green Lantern and can’t wait to really get into this game. I do really miss the minigun already though…
I’ll play some actual matches sometime this week and may even head to a local and/or compete in that StreamMe tournament this Saturday just to see how I fair against real people, including, possibly, some decent players. I definitely have a lot to learn and expect to get bodied, but that’s just part of the learning process.