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Guilty Gear Strive Season 3 adds Johnny, revolutionizes Burst

Guilty Gear Strive Season 3 will kick off with the addition of Johnny, but there’s much more in store for players than that.

Evo has often seen major fighting game announcements, and this year has been no different. Alongside the reveals of two Tekken 8 characters and a special presentation for Mortal Kombat 1, Guilty Gear fans got plenty of news to chew on. While fans expected the third season to bring a batch of new characters and color options, they also found out they’re basically getting a brand-new game. Guilty Gear Strive Season 3 is set to introduce a long list of new gameplay changes.

The Burst mechanic will receive an enormous overhaul and function as another meter, with players able to drain it in order to use new techniques. And of course, the return of Johnny will shake up the game even further.

Johnny is first DLC character of Guilty Gear Strive Season 3

Guilty Gear Strive Season 3 will add four new playable characters, with Johnny being the first to arrive.

Johnny looks basically exactly the same as he did in previous Guilty Gear games, both in terms of appearance and moveset. While returning characters like Ky Kiske, Axl Low, and May all got significant redesigns, that’s not the case with Johnny. The black trenchcoat, leather pants, cowboy hat, sunglasses, and bare chest are all set to return.

He’s also set to play exactly as fans would expect. Johnny swaps his coin for a playing card, but brings back the same quickdraw katana moves that have long defined him. Guilty Gear Strive plays very differently from past games in the series, but Johnny should still feel quite familiar for longtime fans.

Johnny Guilty Gear Strive Splash Art

Guilty Gear Strive Season 3 brings new moves alongside abilities that use Burst meter

May, Faust, Ramlethal Valentine, and Anji Mito will all receive new moves in Guilty Gear Strive Season 3. Alongside this are several new mechanics that will turn the game upside down.

While the burst meter has been a catch-all defensive mechanic, that’s set to change. Instead of just breaking combos when the meter is full, players will have the ability to trade half their meter for a Wild Assault or Deflect Shield. 

Wild Assault is a new offensive mechanic that lets characters dash forward and land a hit that renders a significant stun on block. It’s also shown as having some combo potential with Bridget. Deflect Shield is a new defensive tool that lets players block all attacks including both overhead and low attacks for a short time. It should offer major help against mixup-focused characters like Zato-1. Wild Assault and Deflect Shield are available on all characters and are performed by a quarter-circle forward or back input with Dust, respectively.

Having a tool that uses only half the Burst meter is huge, as a whiffed Burst towards the end of a round often removed the option for the rest of the game.

When will Guilty Gear Strive Season 3 be released?

Guilty Gear Strive Season 3 will be released on August 24, 2023.

The start of the season will include the launch of the new season pass including Johnny, as well as the new gameplay mechanics. As with other characters, Johnny is available as paid DLC but everyone will have access to the new gameplay mechanics.

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Written by Steven Rondina

Steven Rondina has been playing video games since he was a toddler and appreciates every genre out there. He has earned the platinum trophy in every Soulsborne game, is regularly Master Ball-ranked on the competitive Pokemon ladder, and has spent thousands of hours missing shots on Dust 2. His work has previously been featured by Bleacher Report and The Washington Post, and he was an Assistant Editor at WIN.gg. You can follow him on Twitter / X at @srondina.

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