Everything You Need to Know About Shulk's Monado Arts

Catalyst - May 5, 2017

It's far too often that I see people (specifically commentators) who have no idea what effects are given off by Shulk's Monado Arts. Shulk's entire game plan will usually revolve around the special move, so it's important to know what you're talking about if you're going to be playing/fighting/spectating/commentating Shulk. This map won't be going extremely in-depth, but it should be enough to grasp an understanding of each art's abilities. Without further ado, let's get the guide going!

 

Jump Art Kanji

Art 1- Monado Jump

Stat Changes: (Courtesy of Kurogane Hammer)

DAMAGE TAKEN: +22% (1.22X)
DAMAGE DEALT: No Change
KNOCKBACK RECEIVED: No Change
KNOCKBACK DEALT: No Change
JUMP HEIGHT: Increased
GROUND SPEED:  No Change
AERIAL SPEED: +50% (1.5x)
FALL SPEED: +22% (1.22x)
SHIELD HEALTH: No Change

Monado Jump's Strengths:

  • The art improves Shulk's air game in every sense. He jumps higher, he moves around faster, and becomes a fast-faller. He can get almost anywhere he needs to be much quicker.
  • This art is a fantastic tool for camping. Shulk can move around faster than many characters, and his airdodge can slip up, down, and all around to make him extremely evasive.
  • Jump makes Shulk's aerials safer on shield. This is due to the fact that his increased airspeed allows him to gain more distance from his opponents before landing, which makes it harder for opponents to punish. Short-hop Forward Air can even be jumped out of before being made to land.
  • Shulk's offstage game improves greatly in Jump, from both ends. The added mobility can put Shulk in great positions for gimping opponents, and it can do so very quickly. On the flip side, his recovery is boosted greatly, giving him an easier time escaping his opponent's gimp attempts. This is due to the increased jump height, and the extra height added to Air Slash.
  • Jump art gives Shulk access to Monado Purge. Monado Purge is a deadly 50/50 in the form of Up Throw -> Up Air. It can kill extremely early, particularly so with rage.

 Monado Jump's Weaknesses:

  • Getting comboed in Jump art is a nightmare. Shulk takes far more damage in Jump, and he also becomes a fast-faller. Combine this with the fact that he doesn't have any quick aerials, and he has a very tough time escaping strings.
  • Although his knockback stats are not changed directly, he can occasionally lose stocks earlier in Jump. This is explained in the Misconceptions tab below.

Misconceptions To Clear Up:

  • Jump art does not make Shulk any lighter/heavier. However, the fact that he takes more damage in Jump can affect the formula for knockback calculation. As a result, he does take a slight bit more knockback in Jump. However, the key word here is slight.
  • Monado Jump is not called 'the Wind Monado.'

 

Speed Art Kanji

Art 2- Monado Speed

Stat Changes: (Courtesy of Kurogane Hammer)

DAMAGE TAKEN: No Change
DAMAGE DEALT: -20% (0.8x)
KNOCKBACK RECEIVED: No Change
KNOCKBACK DEALT: Decreased
JUMP HEIGHT: Decreased
GROUND SPEED: +70% (1.7x)
AERIAL SPEED: +30% (1.3x)
FALL SPEED: No Change
SHIELD HEALTH: No Change

Monado Speed's Strengths:

  • Shulk's ground speed skyrockets in this art, almost being the fastest in the game. He has the fastest walk in the game, and his run speed is second only to Sonic.
  • His follow-ups are improved quite a bit. Speed Shulk can particularly get strings started off of Neutral Air and Down Throw, though it is not limited to these moves.
  • His walk speed is greater than many character's air speeds. Using this, Shulk can use Up Tilts or other moves to catch landings quite effectively.
  • Much like Jump art, Speed's increased air speed can allow for his aerials to become safer on shield.
  • The buff to air speed gives Shulk better horizontal recovery.

Monado Speed's Weaknesses:

  • Shulk's damage output is significantly hindered in Speed. Even if you're getting combos on an opponent, it can become difficult to rack up damage in this art.
  • Decreased knockback mean that Shulk has a harder time killing, if you decide to use this art at a high percent.
  • The nerf to jump height reduces Shulk's vertical recovery.

Misconceptions To Clear Up:

  • Speed art also does not make Shulk any lighter or heavier.
  • Monado Speed does not give Shulk access to any Short Hop Auto-Cancels on his aerials.

 

Shield Art Kanji

Art 3- Monado Shield

Stat Changes: (Courtesy of Kurogane Hammer)

DAMAGE TAKEN: -33% (0.67x)
DAMAGE DEALT: -30% (0.7x)
KNOCKBACK RECEIVED: -22% (0.78x)
KNOCKBACK DEALT: Decreased
JUMP HEIGHT: Decreased
GROUND SPEED:  -40% (0.6x)
AERIAL SPEED: -40% (0.6x)
FALL SPEED:  No Change
SHIELD HEALTH: +50% (1.5x)

Monado Shield's Strengths:

  • This art gives Shulk many second-chances at higher percents. Killing Shield Shulk is an absolute chore, and he may sometimes be surviving at percents upwards of 200.
  • At earlier percents, it can be useful for escaping combos. This is due to the decreased hitstun Shulk experiences in Shield. One notable example is Mario's Down Throw -> Up Tilt at minimal percents.
  • It can be used to escape many kill confirms, too. Examples include Robin's Checkmate, and Donkey Kong's 'Ding Dong.'
  • This is the only art that changes Shulk's shield health. It becomes much more solid, allowing him to avoid many shield-break scenarios entirely. 

Monado Shield's Weaknesses:

  • Shulk is slowed to a crawl. It is hard for him to approach in Shield, and it is easy to camp him out and run away from him in the art.
  • Though it can be used to escape kill confirms, it can also cause him to get hit by them at unusually high percents. Thus, caution must be used.
  • Shield Shulk's recovery is atrocious. This is due to his laughable air speed, and his decreased jump height.

Misconceptions To Clear Up:

  • Shield technically does NOT  make Shulk heavier. Though his 'Knockback Taken' stat is reduced, his weight stat remains the same.
  • Shield art does not make Vision stronger.
  • Shield Shulk does not take more damage in compensation for less knockback. He takes less damage, too.

 

Buster Art Kanji

Art 4- Monado Buster

Stat Changes: (Courtesy of Kurogane Hammer)

DAMAGE TAKEN: +13% (1.13x)
DAMAGE DEALT: +40%
KNOCKBACK RECEIVED: No Change
KNOCKBACK DEALT: -32% (0.68x)
JUMP HEIGHT: No Change
GROUND SPEED: No Change
AERIAL SPEED: No Change
FALL SPEED: No Change
SHIELD HEALTH: No Change

Monado Buster's Strengths:

  • This art is a godsend for follow-ups. Shulk gives less knockback, and deals more damage. This is a recipe for devastating strings, that can rack up incredible percentages in mere seconds.
  • Buster's additional damage causes Shulk's moves to do more shieldstun. As a result, everything is a tad safer against shields.
  • It also means he can better chip away at shield health, which can sometimes end up in a shield break.

Monado Buster's Weaknesses:

  • Shulk also takes more damage in Buster. This makes it a bit of a double-edged sword, and somewhat risky.
  • Unless you get a shield break, don't expect to be taking any stocks in this art.

Misconceptions To Clear Up:

  • Shulk does not move slower in Buster. It actually doesn't change his mobility at all.
  • He also does not recieve additional knockback in Buster.

 

Smash Art Kanji

Art 5- Monado Smash

Stat Changes: (Courtesy of... you guessed it... Kurogane Hammer)

DAMAGE TAKEN: No Change
DAMAGE DEALT: -50% (0.5x)
KNOCKBACK RECEIVED: +7% (1.07x)
KNOCKBACK DEALT: +18% (1.18x)
JUMP HEIGHT: No Change
GROUND SPEED: No Change
AERIAL SPEED: No Change
FALL SPEED: No Change
SHIELD HEALTH: No Change

Monado Smash's Strengths:

  • Smash art kills frighteningly early. Getting hit by anything Smash Shulk throws out becomes very dangerous, which may instill fear in opponents.
  • Shulk is given access to two kill throws, in the form of Down Throw and Back Throw.
  • Much like Shield art, it can also be useful for escaping combos at some percents. (Primarily early ones.) Shulk gets launched further away, which can put him out of range for a follow-up.

Monado Smash's Weaknesses:

  • Shulk also dies frighteningly early. This art is designed to be high-risk/high-reward, so it needs to be used extremely carefully.
  • This is when Shulk's damage output is at its weakest. It is cut by half, making percents crawl up very slowly.

Misconceptions To Clear Up:

  • Like Buster, Smash art does not change Shulk's mobility at all.
  • Smash Shulk does not take more damage. It is strictly knockback that is amplified.

 

And there we have it! A fairly quick crash-course on Shulk's Monado Arts. Understanding the arts is necessary for understanding Shulk as a character, so I hope you could learn something from this!

-Catalyst

This blog post was written by a SSB World community member. Share your Smash 4 knowledge by creating your own blog post now.

Comments

Its shit 👀
SolarFlare15 - May 5, 2017
MY MAN
CoachBash - May 5, 2017
Thank you for making this dude, very well written!
Psyche - May 6, 2017
Not enough info on Wind Monado... :(
TM20 - May 18, 2017

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