Samurai Shodown 3/Nakoruru

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ナコルル, Nakoruru


Nakoruru is a woman of nature, always listening to her surroundings and acting in accordance with the local ecosystem. For some reason, the will of Mother Earth insisted she learn how to do infinites, which is more than a little weird. But nature has never done her wrong before, so she decided to go along with it.

Nakoruru, Kamui Kotan’s premier priestess, got a serious upgrade for this game. She gains all sorts of fun new toys, even without taking Slash/Bust Techniques into account. Chief among them is her new command grab, which thanks to how throw protection works, is a massive boon for her increasingly lengthy list of ways to open up the opponent. She is a tough character to play well, with a lot of special little details to keep track of and some tricky execution for her infinite combos, but she'll pay dividends numerous times over if mastered.

Slash Technique is the Nakoruru you love to hate. She calls her ever-helpful bird Mamahaha to do all sorts of helpful attacks, almost all of which have an endless amount of utility -- and we do mean endless. If Mamahaha hits you, it'll lead to a combo, a nigh-inescapable pressure sequence, or just plain irritating space control and zoning. Slash Nakoruru is great at everything, and has absolutely earned her notoriety.

Bust, however? You just hate her. She trades Mamahaha in at Gamestop for the wolf Shikuru and starts making everyone else in the game look like they’re not moving at all. She’s arguably less versatile thanks to being forced to ride on Shikuru to get the most out of this Technique, but she gains so much when riding the wolf that it’s not even funny. She’s got an endless barrel of mixups and ways to change her movement to bait the opponent. This toolkit all coagulates into a character who loves to make the opponent look bad for getting inevitably opened up and combo’d to death.

Strengths Weaknesses
  • Unmatched aerial tools, including the best air throw in the game
  • Slash has some extremely threatening keepaway options
  • Bust's rushdown is difficult to challenge
  • Very high execution barrier overall
  • Slash can struggle at getting big damage
  • Bust nearly broke the Kohatsu community. She will strike again


Damage taken Rage rate Rage duration Throw startup Deflect advantage Deflect disadvantage modifier
110% 87.5% 3.7 sec 14f +29 ±0

Normal Moves

Far Slashes

  • (Properties) - Air unblockable
  • (Description) - Quick sword swipe. Has absolutely insane range for its speed, making it great for poking.
  • (Properties) - Air unblockable, cancelable
  • (Description) - Nakoruru takes a step forward with a downward sword slash. Has excellent range, and the cancel makes it great for footsies and punishes into Annu Mutsube.
  • (Properties) - Air unblockable, cancelable
  • (Description) - Slow sword swipe. Less range than 5B, which makes it a good deal harder to use in neutral. Mostly used in niche combos.
  • (Properties) -
  • (Description) - A short swipe at the opponent's shins. Fast, but short range.
  • (Properties) -
  • (Description) - Like a slower version of 2A. Hard to recommend over your standing slashes.
  • (Properties) - Air unblockable, cancelable
  • (Description) - Slow uppercut sword swipe. It slow speed makes it difficult to use as anti-air, but both of its hits being cancellable makes it a mean punish tool.

Near Slashes

  • (Properties) - Air unblockable
  • (Description) - Looks a lot like a standing 2A. Not really worth a whole lot.
  • (Properties) - Air unblockable, cancellable
  • (Description) - n.5A but a lot better. Staple in combos.
  • (Properties) - Air unblockable, cancellable
  • (Description) - Two-hit sword swipe. Both hits are cancellable, but the second hit's cancel window is very weirdly late. Mostly seen in punishes or some combos, but hard to recommend over 2C for that purpose.
  • (Properties) -
  • (Description) - Same as 2A.
  • (Properties) -
  • (Description) - Same as 2B.
  • (Properties) -
  • (Description) - Same as 2C.


  • (Properties) - Hits high, air unblockable
  • (Description) - Lightning fast universal overhead with great range. Roughly even on crouch hit, immensely punishable on both block and stand hit.
  • (Properties) - Hits high
  • (Description) - Much slower jumping axe kick. Same as 5BC otherwise.


  • (Properties) - Hits low
  • (Description) - It hits low. Don't ask.
  • (Properties) - Cancellable, air unblockable (first hit only)
  • (Description) - Flip kick. If all three hits connect, the opponent is air reset, but forced into a landing animation that leaves Nakoruru plus. At some spacings, the third hit will not connect, causing it to knock down. Mostly used to tick into command grab.
  • (Properties) - Hits low
  • (Description) - Standard low kick. Good for abare, but not much else.
  • (Properties) -
  • (Description) - Slow sweep that doesn't hit low. Can be used for far range anti-air, but don't count on it.

Jumping Normals

  • (Properties) - Hits high
  • (Description) - Downward angled swipe. Fast, but its angle makes it hard to use.
  • (Properties) - Hits high
  • (Description) - Horizontal sword swipe. Can be useful for air-to-air, but not much else.
  • (Properties) - Hits high
  • (Description) - Huge sword swipe. Great for jumping in and meeting people in the air if you think they're gonna push a button. Option selects with her air throw.
  • (Properties) - Hits high
  • (Description) - Standard jumping kick. Fast, can be useful for jumping in.

Dashing Normals

  • (Properties) - Air unblockable
  • (Description) - Dashing 5A, which means it has insane range. Excellent for cross-under anti-air.
  • (Properties) - Cancellable.
  • (Description) - Actually pretty good normal to punish whiffs with or otherwise convert off of a Slash 63214B from long range.
  • (Properties) - Unblockable.
  • (Description) - Slow unblockable. It's not like Nakoruru needs this, having a handy dandy command grab.
  • (Properties) - Hits low
  • (Description) - Slide kick. Short range, but reasonably quick recovery.

Unarmed Normals

  • (Properties) -
  • (Description) - Finger jab. Very stubby.
  • (Properties) -
  • (Description) - Crouching finger jab. Very stubby, now while crouching.
  • (Properties) -
  • (Description) - Jumping finger jab. Very stubby, now in the air.
  • (Properties) -
  • (Description) - Dashing u.5S.

Command Moves

Sankaku Tobi (Wall Jump)
  • (Description) - Nakoruru's wall jump. May be useful for escaping the corner.
- Air throw - j.4/6C
  • (Description) - Having this means you've got an inherent edge in air-to-air battles. And for some reason this one in specific has REALLY good range. Effectively Nakoruru's go-to anti-air at close range.
  • (Properties) - Hits high
  • (Description) - A strange falling flip kick. Has two hitboxes -- the early hitbox is an overhead, but the later hitbox can be crouch blocked. Very unsafe on block.

Special Moves


- 「Annu Mutsube」 - 412S
  • (Description) - Classic low slide. Staple in combos, and it can low profile a number of attacks.
- 「Rera Mutsube」 - 236S
  • (Description) - Nakoruru charges into the skies. Can be useful for anti-air at further ranges, but its primary use is in front hit punishes. Whether it fully connects is very finicky and position/character dependent at times.
- 「Kamui Rimse」 - 421S(~S) (can be used unarmed)
  • (Description) - Projectile reflector. Back-hitting an airborne opponent with 421A will restand the opponent, opening up Slash Nakoruru’s infinite combo. If you aren't reflecting a fireball or doing a back hit with it, this move is actually kind of bad. The followup doesn't combo regardless of how you set it up, so doing it is begging to eat a punish.
- 「Rera O Chikiri」 - 623D (can be used unarmed)
  • (Description) - Nakoruru's command grab, which she has for some reason. Small damage, and essentially leaves you at neutral rather than allowing you to enforce any sort of okizeme, but it's still a command grab you can tick into, so it's got its uses. Makes good breathing room for you to start up your bird spam neutral or hop on the wolf.


- 「Mamahaha ni Tsukamari」 - 214D (can be used unarmed)
  • (Description) - Nakoruru clings to Mamahaha, avoiding low attacks and temporarily giving her the ability to fly… sort of. For a limited time, she’ll hover, where she can move left, right, up and down with relative impunity. After time is up, she’ll let go of Mamahaha automatically, but you can manually let go of Mamahaha with Oriru. When hanging on to Mamahaha, Nako has access to basic slashes and Kamui Mutsube.

->「Oriru」- 1/2/3D (can be used unarmed)

  • Description - Just let go of the bird. Comes with a good deal of landing recovery so it's in probably less safe than doing the overhead.

->「Kamui Mutsube」- 236C (can be used unarmed)

  • Description - Fast-acting diving overhead while hanging onto the bird. Even with 214D's associated startup, Kamui Mutsube isn’t a terrible option to open up an opponent if your command grabs aren’t quite hitting home.
- 「Rerashu」 - 63214A (can be used unarmed)
  • (Description) - Mamahaha learned how to throw tornadoes at people. She sends her own version of a Senpuuretsuzan at a diagonal angle down towards the opponent, and if it hits you have time to run under and time a restand attempt or jump up and smack them with a j.C. Also makes a great trap combined with her lows, 5BC, and command grab. It’s possible to hit the opponent meaty with this, and have enough time to run up and command grab them with 623D if they block. Think of it as Hanzo's slinky oki but with a tornado. And a bird.
- 「Shichipaku Etu」 - 63214B (can be used unarmed)
  • (Description) - The Mamahaha dive bomb, freshly upgraded. In other games it just knocks down and resets the situation, but in this outing it stuns the opponent for a long enough time that you can run up and convert into your combo of choice. If you're close enough, you can easily do a ToD off of this. It’s also an overhead.
- 「Shichipaku Am」 - 63214C (can be used unarmed)
  • (Description) - Basically 63214B but Mamahaha drops the opponent onto the floor upon connecting. Yet another combo starter, and instrumental in her more consistent infinites. It has essentially identical frame data to 63214B for Nakoruru, but Mamahaha flies noticeably farther forward and takes a bit longer to come back. You get plenty of time to confirm the hit and run over to start your combo of choice -- usually a back hit infinite. If you're too far for that, just jump up and j.C them. Like 63214B, it’s an overhead.
- WFT「Ererushu Kamui Rimse」 - 6321463214AB
  • (Description) - Unreactable overhead that avoids attacks during its lightning fast startup and deals a billion damage. Incredibly easy to combo into thanks to this game's recoil mechanics and heavy hitstop. Very punishable on block and whiff. And no you can’t do it while holding onto the bird.


- 「Shikuru ni Nori」 - 214D (can be used unarmed)
  • (Description) - What Bust Nakoruru’s entire game revolves around. She hops on Shikuru, assuming she's close enough. When not on the wolf, she can still happily hold her own, but you’re playing Slash Nako without Mamahaha when you do so. Get on the wolf and you gain access to a whole host of special moves and overall increased mobility complemented by dash cancels to run circles around your opponent with. Getting hit will knock you off the wolf, and you’ll need to find space to get back on and start your offense again.
Being on Shikuru forces Nakoruru to play more aggressively. It removes her ability to side step, circle step, pick up her weapon, throw, and rage charge. The upsides that Shikuru provides more than make up for these downsides. Chief among these upsides granted by the wolf is that Nakoruru is almost completely immune to normal throws, air throws, and special throws; they just whiff even if she’s right in the opponent’s face. The three major exceptions are that Bust Gaira’s command throws can still connect, she is vulnerable to command throws when using her special moves (i.e. when recovering), and she can be air thrown specifically if she is P2.
On top of everything else, Bust Nakoruru also does not take deep hitstun from airborne attacks that connect while she’s crouching on the wolf. This means if the opponent hits you with a 5BC and you’re crouching, you will not take increased hitstun and therefore almost always be able to punish the attack on hit. Often with a ToD.

-> 「Oriru」 - 4/6D (also in the air/can be used unarmed)

  • (Description) - Nakoruru hops off of Shikuru. When done in the air, it acts as a double jump and is another strong way to change your air momentum. She can air block pretty much the instant she hops off, so this is not risky unless the opponent reads her with a very committal anti-air.

-> 「Mer Shikite」 - 412C (can be used unarmed)

  • (Description) - Rushing wolf with invincibility that runs out a couple frames after the forward motion. When done close enough to the opponent, this will cross through them. Doesn't directly deal any damage, but Nakoruru can use Bunri Kougeki to dive off and attack them herself. This combined with the ability to cross through the opponent essentially means she can cross you up at any given time from close range.

-> 「Kanto Shikite」 - 236C (can be used unarmed)

  • (Description) - Huge jump diagonally up and forwards. Despite appearances, does not directly deal damage and invincibility kicks in later to the animation. Generally is a vehicle for a Bunri Kougeki to further change her momentum and snipe jumps.

-> 「Imeru Shikite」 - j.623C (can be used unarmed)

  • (Description) - Bog standard divekick. It hits overhead, so it can mix up with w.2C as well as be cancelled from w.5BC. Just be careful about getting blocked. If you end up behind the opponent on block or whiff, they get a free backhit.

-> 「Bunri Kougeki」 - 1/4/7/3/6/9C during Mer/Kanto Shikite (can be used unarmed)

  • (Description) - The wolf special followup, and the only way most of them can deal damage. Sends Nakoruru diving off of Shikuru with dagger in hand. This attack is air unblockable, and can be done in any direction that is not straight up or straight down, with separating after Mer Shikite additionally restricting any downwards angles. Doing this from Kanto Shikite will additionally make the attack hit overhead.

-> WFT「Nubeki Kamui Shikite」 - 4123623BC

  • (Description) - Another standard autocombo WFT that has Nakoruru separate from Shikuru after connecting. It starts very fast when on the wolf, but forces Nakoruru onto the wolf when she uses it on foot. Can be implemented into back hit loops and generally confirmed from her wolf buttons for damage and disarming.
- 「Epunkine Shikite」 - AC when knocked down (can be used unarmed)
  • (Description) - Okay, this one is REALLY pushing it. When Nakoruru is knocked down, she can call Shikuru to headbutt her assailant for a stagger state like with Slash’s 63214B. This means if you’re close enough and do it right before waking up, you can land a combo. Even a ToD if your awareness is good enough.



On the most basic level, Nakoruru excels at walling people out with her strong grounded buttons, as well as shutting down aerial approaches thanks to her amazing aerial normals and phenomenal air throw. Her standard close range tools aren't anything to write home about, and mostly serve to help her reset to neutral, but she is certainly capable of making people hurt if they commit to an unsafe option while trying to navigate around her.


Slash Nako's approach to the game is, in some ways, comparable to that of Slash Haohmaru. While her offensive tools aren't the greatest, she's exceptionally good at controlling space with her 63214S series. She mostly wants to frustrate people into making mistakes as they try to navigate around her barrage of big normals and bird specials to try and scope out a punish -- in the best case, a circle step or even a stray 63214S.
In the neutral, you'll primarily be trying to keep people out with the bird, occasionally sniping unsuspecting opponents at further ranges with Annu Mutsube, or smacking them out of the air with Rera Mutsube or an air throw depending on the distance. Given that she runs fairly fast as well, run under 66A can be a great anti-air option.
If you find yourself in the close range, you'll mostly want to be finding ways to reset back to neutral, since Slash Nako doesn't have many ways to push an advantage if it doesn't immediately open up a combo. Ticking 6D into command throw is a great way to set this up, but just about any knockdown will also do the trick.
At full POW or in Desperation, you suddenly have access to an unseeable high/low mixup that happily steals rounds in 412S/6321463214AB. Both options lead to some frankly stupid damage, though you'll likely not want to just throw these options out unless you're seriously conditioning your opponent to block a certain way. It's a lot safer to stick to hitconfirming into these options for better damage and much more safety.

Mamahaha Glitch

There is a glitch shared between 63214B/63214C that allows Nakoruru to immediately use another Mamahaha attack (including 214D/WFT) with essentially no cooldown -- it will work even if Mamahaha has already hit the opponent. Any applicable special move done with this glitch will have noticeably quicker startup, and 63214S will additionally have Mamahaha attack from where she was rather than from behind Nakoruru. The timing is strict, having an approximately 2f window when Mamahaha hits the ground for the subsequent attack to come out. If a normal comes out, your timing was wrong. Mastering the timing for this allows you to very effectively pester and pressure your opponent from a safe distance, and likely convert into your combo of choice afterwards.

Here is a clip of the glitch performed successfully.


While on the wolf, several important things happen:

  • your slash normals no longer recoil on block
  • all of your normals can be dash cancelled
  • you cannot be thrown

Because of this, you want to, in the famous words of Uncle Alex Valle, RTSD. Dash cancelling w.5B with 664 lets you maintain offensive momentum fairly easily, and from here, you can begin to overwhelm your opponent with a barrage of buttons, conditioning them to sit still so you can start enforcing your high-low mixup with w.2C and Imeru Shikite. You can even fit w.5BC into this, as you can now threaten with a potential double overhead to really keep people guessing.
Getting hit will, of course, send you off the wolf, but considering that you still have Annu/Rera Mutsube and your command grab, you have no shortage of ways to get yourself back on the wolf to start rushing people down again.



Front hit BnB: 5B xx 412B/236B
412B is her primary ender for combos, but specific characters take more damage from 236B in this situation.

Front hit punish combo: 2C xx 236C
If both attacks fully connect, it stuns. Do it again and it kills. Very strong punish, but 236C is finicky with who it works on.


Front hit ToD: 63214B [run forward] 2C xx 412B [stun] 2C xx 412B
You can land this from pretty much any stray Mamahaha hit, but you need to run forward fairly quick if far enough away.

Front hit glitch combo: 63214B 5B xx 63214B
A close range combo that makes use of an odd hitstop glitch. Following up with 5B soon enough interacts with the 63214B hitstun, allowing a normally impossible combo into another bird call. Follow up with your punish of choice.

Back hit infinite: [n.5B xx 63214C, dash under 421A]xN
You can start this from any successful Mamahaha hit if you’re in range. If you dash so that you’re basically directly under your opponent, you’ll be in the right spot. You don’t want to run too far, otherwise you’ll get stuck in the turn around animation and won’t be able to follow up with 421A. A helpful way to ensure 421A comes out is right after going under the opponent, to input 321A. This ensures you won't get any accidental 412A.

Easy character specific back hit infinite: [n.5B xx 63214B, dash up circle step]xN
If timing restands isn’t your thing or you just want less room for error, do this instead. Like the above loop, you can start it from pretty much any Mamahaha attack that connects. The major downside is that this loop is character specific.
It will not work on: Nakoruru, Rimururu, Amakusa, Ukyo, Basara.

“Galaxy brain mixup”: 2D n.5B xx 6321463214AB
This is a double frame-perfect setup off of a crossunder anti air 66A listed primarily for archival’s sake. The 2D needs to be a frame perfect meaty, and the link to n.5B is also frame perfect. But since the opponent is backturned, they cannot jump and you get to mix between the above 2D combo and raw 6321463214AB for an unavoidable 50/50. Purely swag.


Front hit BnB: w.2A/B xx 664 w.5A/B xx w.66C
It’s possible to keep looping even on front hit until stun, but it’s much easier off of back hit and requires point blank spacing. Finish with w66C if you think the next rep will miss.

Back hit infinite: [w.5A/B xx 664]xN
Abusing Bust Nako’s run cancels while on the wolf gives her this simple infinite.

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