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Functioning almost completely identically to the main developer Eighting's most infamous title Marvel vs Capcom 3, DNF Duel's combo system utilizes a basic Hitstun Decay formula to put a limit on combos. This means that as a combo goes on, the amount of hitstun each attack deals is reduced as it reaches certain time thresholds. Hitstun/Untechable time decay is determined by more than just the amount of time that has passed in the combo; it is also calculated in part by what starter is used, and the decay formula also varies based on whether the opponent in the middle of the combo is on the ground or airborne.
These are the basic principles of the formula:
- On a grounded opponent, every attack's hitstun is reduced by 5F for every 120F that the opponent is in grounded hitstun.
- On an airborne opponent, every attack's hitstun is reduced by 4F for every 30F that the opponent is in airborne hitstun.
- Neither of these timers overlap; each one only depletes when the opponent is in that specific state.
But of course, the above list alone does not tell the whole story: some attacks may have a property where they instantly consume a specific amount of "time" when used as the first hit of a combo. Typically, A normals immediately advance the timer by 60F when used as a starter, and ReversalTo perform an attack as soon as possible after getting knocked down or leaving hitstun/blockstun. moves tend to advance it by 120F.
In DNFD, the game's damage scaling system utilizes a "Combo Rate", which is most simply described as a percentage between 10% and 100% assigned to each move, that when used in a combo functions as an bound to how much damage at most the following attacks in the combo can deal. The Combo Rate in a combo can only decrease, and never increase.
For example, if a combo is at 100% Combo Rate, and a move with 80% proration is used, this means that the remaining moves in a combo can only deal 80% of their damage at most. From there, if a move with 90% Combo Rate is used, it will not increase the combo's proration back up to 90%, but rather the rate will remain at 80% and the move with 90% rate will only deal 80% of its damage.
This makes Combo Rates serve as a sort of "upper clamp" on how much damage a combo can deal from certain starters or after certain extenders are used, as starting or extending a combo with a move with poor Combo Rate such as a 2A or a true reversalA reversal attack of which the user is invulnerable throughout all startup frames, including the first active frame or more. will stick the Combo Rate at that low percentage and can go no higher than that.
Every move also has a "Fixed Combo Rate" that functions as a minimum damage it can deal, regardless of the current Combo Rate, but also having no effect on the Combo Rate. On most moves this property ranges between 10-15%, but more notably on Awakening Supers, this is typically 50%.
- Also known as OTGThe act of hitting the opponent when they are knocked down. Short for "off the ground" or "on the ground."
When characters are struck by most attacks, a portion of the damage is dealt as White Damage distinctly visible on the HP Gauge. Characters cannot be K.O.'d from this white damage, and recover it (i.e. turn it back into "real" HP) at a rate of 30 HP per second after not taking any damage for a brief period.
- Normals, throws, Skills, and Guard Cancels deal 50% of their damage as white damage on hit and 0 damage of any kind on block.
- MP Skills do not deal any of their damage as white damage while removing all white HP on hit, and strikes deal 50% of their damage as white damage on block while projectiles deal ??% (less).
- Awakening Skills do not deal any of their damage as white damage while removing all white HP on hit like MP Skills, but do 0 damage of any kind on block.