Maya revealed as Killer Instinct season 2's next playable character; Air Counter Breakers, Stage Ultras, and more to be added

Posted by Steven 'Dreamking23' Chavez • July 11, 2014 at 2:44 p.m. PDT

Updated: Maya has been revealed as Killer Instinct season 2's next playable fighter. We have added a few more images, including a glimpse of her stage.

What we know so far is that Maya's play-style heavily revolves around her daggers. She has the ability to lose them, has something called "Blade Bouncing," and she can even level up her weapons. KI Central notes that Maya can recapture her daggers, using them similarly to a boomerang.

Click images for larger versions

Below you will find more details from the KI panel.

More notable information from the EVO 2014 panel

• Air Counter Breakers are being added in the next installment.
- All characters will be able to utilize this new mechanic.

• "Stage Ultras" are also being added in season 2.
- We can expect more info on them soon.

• Season 2 is expected to be "bigger and badder," and the developers are looking to add more substantial features and modes, such as new ladder systems.

• There will be more content than season 1, and luckily, we can expect to see bundles similar to the previous installment.

• The development team said that they intend to do a better job with season 2 classic costumes in order to ensure they are as close to the originals as possible.

• There will be a lot more to the Killer Instinct story in season 2.

• Maya's stage is set in South America. The dev team states that Maya's use of daggers changed the combat system.

• The rank limit will exceed 40 in season 2.

• There will be no violent "Fatalities" this season.

• Returning characters will undergo changes, and Fulgore is getting tweaks that will make him more accessible.

Source: Big thanks to KI Central for live tweeting the EVO panel. Promotional image via Michael Robles.


ProfessorLester said on July 11, 2014 at 2:37 p.m.

poor Sadira

hozukimaru said on July 11, 2014 at 2:39 p.m.

Sigh...I was looking forward to KI when I finally buy an X1, but now this is just getting stupid. I already have a problem with counter breaker, as they disrupt the flow of the game, and there will be this?

dvjr22 said on July 11, 2014 at 2:43 p.m.

As the game stands now, this mechanic would only effect Sadira. I doubt they're making a whole new mechanic for one character which means they're planning season two characters that can combo in the air. I'm skeptical about this change, but I'll wait and see.

KleenexGhost said on July 11, 2014 at 2:47 p.m.

This also means the rock/paper/scissors system will now apply to air combos and juggles? And now Sadira's air combos are breakable?

We'll have to see how it works.

Like Maya's look btw.

Dracos_Wrath said on July 11, 2014 at 2:48 p.m.

How do they disrupt the flow of the game? It's not just that the game is all about them, but they were made so you wouldn't just sit waiting for the opponent to finish the combo*.

*Except when you're defeated.

RedEther said on July 11, 2014 at 2:55 p.m.

Maya looks good :)

EternalDragon said on July 11, 2014 at 2:57 p.m.

Mayas design looks good

Him said on July 11, 2014 at 2:58 p.m.

Lookin' like Scarlett Johansson

Focusflute said on July 11, 2014 at 2:59 p.m.

My god I can't wait! If u haven't given this game a SERIOUS try u need to!!! Best fighter I have ever played!!!

Yung said on July 11, 2014 at 3 p.m.

She is pretty cool ... but Cinder. T_T

dvjr22 said on July 11, 2014 at 3:03 p.m.

This makes me wonder if there will be air auto-doubles, manuals, etc. Sadira's air combos start with a jump attack (opener), ends with a widow's bite (opener), or may be extended by recluse (special move). None of that is breakable and fills up KV quickly. DH designed it that way because it was unbreakable and thus keeping it balanced. Extending the combo system to the air, like Marvel, would mean extending the combo's components, right? We need more answers.

And Maya does look cool.

Otter_of_Death said on July 11, 2014 at 3:03 p.m.

Maya looks amazing!

qcevolution said on July 11, 2014 at 3:06 p.m.

She looks like Beyonce, not a bad IG.

dvjr22 said on July 11, 2014 at 3:07 p.m.

Or maybe good for Sadira?

CaryKokujin said on July 11, 2014 at 3:09 p.m.

This will affect sadira as well as anyone using the air recapture mechanic, which they showed on TJ combo but will be available to most of the cast

TheTTimeLives said on July 11, 2014 at 3:11 p.m.

My faith in Iron Galaxy has improved. So TJ Combo, Maya and Cinder now. Maybe we'll get more reveals later in the weekend (or maybe they just showed this thing of Maya and not anything else because she isn't ready, Cinder's fire has to look better and people put up such a stink about incomplete TJ.)

TJ looking a lot more like TJ and Maya looking good.

BumbleBee said on July 11, 2014 at 3:12 p.m.

Looks kind of generic, compared to her original design from KI2 (even if there is some similarities). Still neat though.

qcevolution said on July 11, 2014 at 3:16 p.m.

You cant be serious? THIS looks more generic than her original? Even the designers said her original was a grass skirt jungle stereotype mess. Thats was the epitome of generic.

shinwar said on July 11, 2014 at 3:22 p.m.

better then them Injustice female models lol

COREY_1993 said on July 11, 2014 at 3:24 p.m.

was the blood type necessary?

Aquaman said on July 11, 2014 at 3:26 p.m.

Maya, I'm hype. Only because it's a guarantee that Tusk is next up.

BumbleBee said on July 11, 2014 at 3:26 p.m.

And, as you can see, it didn't change. Meanwhile, everyone else got redesigned (even if it was unnecessary for some cases).

PJ627 said on July 11, 2014 at 3:27 p.m.

YES! Now please confirm Kim Wu next! :D

BumbleBee said on July 11, 2014 at 3:30 p.m.

My exact thoughts. :D

Sasuga said on July 11, 2014 at 3:35 p.m.

Thats not the Cinder I expected but it's cool. He'll show up.

FinchoMatic said on July 11, 2014 at 3:37 p.m.

My body is soooo ready. I cannot wait for Maya's trailer!

OniBlanka said on July 11, 2014 at 3:42 p.m.

Wohooo! My fave from KI2.I love Sadira but Mayas new design is enough to switch my mains

AugustAPC said on July 11, 2014 at 3:47 p.m.

No she doesn't, lol.

First off, er stage looks gorgeous. The blue water is absolutely beautiful with the lush greenery.

Her design looks significantly better than TJ, yet there's still a tameness to it. I'll wait 'til I can see a 3D model to make a final judgment. I'm a bit worried there will be a tangible stylistic difference between the characters of the two seasons. Hoping they make TJ and Maya a bit more robust in their designs.

Air counter-breakers? Uhh... not really sure what to say as I'm not really sure how this would work. However, I can potentially see this making the fighting engine more "complete", so I'm optimistic in that regard.

Lastly... I'm stoked for Maya. Maya is awesome... but... you teased Cinder!

Hotdiddykong said on July 11, 2014 at 3:49 p.m.

Counter Breakers are part of KI

How about learning to Counter the Counter Breakers, you can do that you know.

JMJ_X said on July 11, 2014 at 3:49 p.m.

They putting the new Air breaker mechanic because as of what we seen and heard today.. Every character is getting the recapture mechanic. Adding the recapture mechanic was going to make certain characters "broken" so they need to figure a way to make it balance. It does hurt Sadira a bit but this means it makes mind game even more deadlier then they already are.. Also the fact that Maya daggers mechanic changes the flow of the game significantly.. Personally I can't wait to see the this in action and also what IG can muster with other characters

RomeMc said on July 11, 2014 at 3:52 p.m.

Her new design looks good! Kinda reminds me of Tela from He-Man

AugustAPC said on July 11, 2014 at 4:01 p.m.

This new Maya's armor is rather common looking. I've seen very similar designs in countless games. I'm not hating. We haven't even seen her 3D model, which could look a lot different. I'm just saying, I feel where he's coming from. KI2 Maya may be simplistic in design, but she did convey that "jungle girl" vibe... and despite its simplicity, it's really not that common an archetype in gaming.

Eternal_Flame said on July 11, 2014 at 4:02 p.m.

My least favorite character in the series (not counting gargos). I was hoping for a Cinder reveal. Her design is way better than before though. If they can make her playstyle funner than it was in KI 2. I'll give her a shot.

Seeing her here now gives me better hope for seeing Kim Wu. Who was my favorite new character from KI 2.

JiCi said on July 11, 2014 at 4:06 p.m.

Honestly, just bring back TJ Combo, Maya, Cinder, Riptor, Tusk, Kim Wu and 2 brand new characters and you're pretty much set for a good season.

Returning characters were the most requested thing when the 1st season came out, so addressing this first would be a boon for the game.

Jake_da_Thrilla said on July 11, 2014 at 4:12 p.m.

Maya is BACK, baby!!!!! YES!!!!

AugustAPC said on July 11, 2014 at 4:17 p.m.

Kim Wu has so much potential. I hope they go with like a female Bruce Lee, nunchacku motif. We have so many Bruce Lee inspired male characters. Kim Wu could jump to the front of the pack for females.

That said... you really like Eyedol better than Maya? :(
Eyedol is infuriating for so many reasons... but none more than that f*cking grunting he does EVERY time he knocks you up in the air. He launches you and all you hear is, "HRNGG, HRNGG, HRNGG, HRNGG!!!" It rapes you ears! AND HE HEALS WHY HE DOES IT!

F*CK EYEDOL!!!!!!!!!!!

*ahem* Sorry.

ZDH513 said on July 11, 2014 at 4:40 p.m.

All the bullet points read like Iron Galaxy is trying to show up and out do DH and embarrass them like season 1 wasn't done well i know this is not the case but it just comes off that way.

Eternal_Flame said on July 11, 2014 at 4:59 p.m.

Ha! I like him because I think he is funner to play than Maya. Everything he does just looks so brutal and satisfying.

That being said I would rather have all the old regular characters back over any of the bosses.

qcevolution said on July 11, 2014 at 5 p.m.

Lol not that season 1 was bad but it could've been a lot better. Content was just lacking unfortunately they didn't have a ton of time to work on it but was very dry. ESPECIALLY the single player aspect

xShonuffx said on July 11, 2014 at 5:09 p.m.

From my understanding at E3. Keits said that they want to introduce air juggles and air combos to the entire roster so while Sadira is the only one who benefited from them, so will other characters. HOW it will be implemented is too soon to tell.

I was hoping for and still am for Kim Wu (Something about Asian fighters and me). But if they get Tusk in there, i'll go out and buy an X1 at any cost.

dvjr22 said on July 11, 2014 at 5:09 p.m.

They never said everyone was getting recaputre. Only Combo is confirmed for that system mechanic.

dvjr22 said on July 11, 2014 at 5:15 p.m.

Everyone in the cast can juggle right now. Sadira benefits from air combos b/c that's her combo trait. Just like Jago has around the world, Orchid has linker to linker, etc... If everyone can combo in the air, then what is Sadira's combo trait now? She's my main, and like all FGC players, I'm attached to the character and just don't want to see her suffer from these changes, which it seems is a possibility with these announcements.

sdstig said on July 11, 2014 at 5:19 p.m.

I like her design. It looks great! Also, interesting to see how they're adding/changing game mechanics. I thought it was just going to be new characters, new stages, and possible rebalancing. We'll see how it all turns out when it's released though.

cloudskywalker said on July 11, 2014 at 5:27 p.m.

No violent "fatalities"? What is their definition of violent? This isn't an E rated game for crying out loud.

yoosterbarn said on July 11, 2014 at 5:35 p.m.

Here's hoping Kim Wu will also be announced Season 2. I enjoy new characters but I do hope that every classic character is in the game especially since there weren't many before hand. Still Iron Galaxy may not be certain if everyone cares for Riptor, Kim Wu or Tusk and would rather go with new faces to fill the spot.

Blackoshinomi said on July 11, 2014 at 5:41 p.m.

I knew maya would make it she look really good I love when game companies make the sisters look good !
The 1st redesign I behind good job guys

Blackoshinomi said on July 11, 2014 at 5:44 p.m.

I know for fact Kim wu going to Be in because there's not that many women in ki

qcevolution said on July 11, 2014 at 5:44 p.m.

Why do ppl keep saying they want all the classic characters? They've confirmed said said time and time again all the old characters will return. Jeez listen ppl

icejohn said on July 11, 2014 at 5:45 p.m.

Tan girl with dreads....alright you finally got my attention.

Darc_Requiem said on July 11, 2014 at 5:48 p.m.

Solange Knowles is being added to KI? Well she did body Jay-Z in that elevator....

Abbadon36 said on July 11, 2014 at 5:48 p.m.

Maya looks awesome! Don't have XBone but not super jealous. Would play the game though.

JMJ_X said on July 11, 2014 at 5:51 p.m.

It's confirm that Maya has a recapture.. I'm getting all this info at the K.I panel.. I'm not lying.. They also made it seem that the Recapture system is being implemented as a whole. So had me wondering lol....Like i said before.. it may or may not hurt Sadira.. we will soon find out but I say it gives peoples options of getting out of the crazy strong shenanigans that sadira has, as well as other characters.. just take this info as a grain of salt until we see this implemented

JMJ_X said on July 11, 2014 at 5:54 p.m.

the definition of violet is MK status.. intense Gore,sex ext...

Junknown said on July 11, 2014 at 6:28 p.m.


HooliganComboFTW said on July 11, 2014 at 6:52 p.m.

Looking loads better then her old look

RandomSelectMaster said on July 11, 2014 at 7 p.m.

I love Maya, but I still do not have an XBox One. Now I need some convincing cause 400 dollars for a game is is fun but okay... Dang, would love it if it was on both PS4 and X. I would have it already.

Books said on July 11, 2014 at 7:21 p.m.

Maya is the first Killer Instinct character with the kind of visual appeal that gets me interested. I hope she plays well.

OniBlanka said on July 11, 2014 at 7:37 p.m.

Sadira is known for her air combos and now they're breakable? Surely they will give her something to compensate. It's like taking away Dhalsims stretchy limbs in street fighter. It's his trade mark. As aerial combat was for sadira

AugustAPC said on July 11, 2014 at 9:54 p.m.

Dead Rising 3
Ori And The Blind Forest
Phantom Dust
Sunset Overdrive

Some of the exclusives and games I'm looking forward to and enjoying. Titanfall has been the first PvP FPS I've enjoyed in a while.

richard713 said on July 12, 2014 at 12:45 a.m.

I'm adding Forza, Halo, Quantum break, Crackdown, and more to come.
despite all the hate toward X1, I think it is a decent console with enjoyable games and interesting feature.

LuvKlngPpl said on July 12, 2014 at 1 a.m.

It seems James Goddard has a severe case of artist's block, because this new design for Maya is just as boring as TJ's, if not more. She's like a petty unit from one of those Rome RTS games made female, not a jungle girl. The only positive she has right now is she doesn't have that Janet Jackson face anymore.

AugustAPC said on July 12, 2014 at 1:55 a.m.

I'm personally more of an arcade/kart racer, myself. I'm also a little burnt on Halo, but I'll be picking it up. I haven't finished Crackdown 1 or 2, so I'll be holding off on that one.

There's certainly a lot more titles that show promise. I just listed my personal preferences at the moment. But yea, if it weren't for all the sh*t that Microsoft muddled the Xbox One in, it would have been a really great launch.

Anyway, I watched the little conference where Keits was talking about Maya. He has some really extravagant and creative ideas for the character. I'm a bit worried they might be a bit too much of a deviation from the feel of the game, as it is. She sounds really cool, and EXTREMELY complex. I just hope they find the right balance with these characters. He's got a tough job with creating new archetypes that are up to the standard of the original content while maintaining their own unique flavor and being intuitive.
I don't quite trust him yet. Divekick's characters are far too basic to get a feel on how his fully fleshed out fighting game characters will turn out.
I'm optimistic, though. He's definitely got some stellar ideas. I just hope it all melds together as well as season one did.

shinra358 said on July 12, 2014 at 5:33 a.m.

From Latoya Jackson to Beoyonce xD
Poor fighting game story confirmed. At least she looks good.

Cael said on July 12, 2014 at 6:13 a.m.

Bigger picture:

Edit, first link didn't work for some reason:

Teinted_Gene said on July 12, 2014 at 6:29 a.m.

Loving maya new costume... only wished they kept her bare footed to maintain that "jungle warrior" vibe she had going in KI2. I wasn't really blown away by any of the character design in season one (except Fulgore) I am VERY impressed with this new Maya design... despite my predilection about her now wearing boots.

But to be fair Iron Galaxy did an amazing job and really nailed Maya new look. This new armor design helps convey the notion that Maya has "risen" in status since the events in KI2 (if there is even still a connection between this game and the older ones). Now she seems to look like a leader among her clan (ie an officer or commander of any army) rather than a grunt warrior. So her new Elite Armor design is a really big plus in terms of KI lore and shows she has progressive as a character since the previous games.

If it was up to me, I would keep the ENTIRE design and just remove the very bottom of her boots to make her bare footed and the rest would be like shin guards.

(quick sketch example )

That way she still has the look of a leader among her people while also maintaining that "jungle vibe" that many KI fans grew to love about Maya. It would be the best of both worlds.

1ButtonDash said on July 12, 2014 at 7:50 a.m.

I love KI but this reveal is lackluster. C'mon now, first a 50% complete T.J. Combo then only concept art for Maya? Why reveal without a trailer.

Double Helix at least had a decent trailer for each reveal. I couldn't help but frown when I saw the panel and them act all hype for just an artwork of Maya. I really hope I'm wrong but I do not have confidence in irongalaxy on this project.

Think about it this way, what if all of a sudden Ed Boon and the MK team just said oh guys we are sorry we are about 50% done with MKX but development is switching over to this other team/studio that made a flash fighting game in which the developers have not even half the experience of the current programers. The outrage from fans would be thru the roof and so many people would be upset.

Look I was a huge supporter of double helix and season 1 but I have my serious doubts for season 2. Again I hope I am wrong...

gammabolt17 said on July 12, 2014 at 8:05 a.m.

This sounds like it might as well be an entirely new game. I don't know if that's good or bad...

xShonuffx said on July 12, 2014 at 9:35 a.m.

Your complaining about something that is a part of game development. iron Galaxy didn't have enough time to implement a full fledged TJ Combo they only JUST got the tools to start development a few months ago.

Game design takes time, lots of time. Expecting them to have a fully functional and balance game in like a day is ludicrous. Have some patience and give Iron Galaxy a chance to at least get the ball rolling. jeez.

1ButtonDash said on July 12, 2014 at 9:46 a.m.

Oh trust me, I def I am gonna give them a chance. I understand gaming development as I work for a ip that has a PS4 exclusive title in the works that we still havn't announced after working on it for close to 2 years now.

And the T.J. combo video didn't bother me that much. I thought he looked great for 6 weeks of development not to mention the stage. But yesterday is what ticked me off. They had a reveal which was just character art. That took all the fun and hype out of it for me personally. And Maya to boot, I LOVED that character in KI2. The artworked looked good, like her design but I woulda much rather seen gameplay.

JMJ_X said on July 12, 2014 at 10:01 a.m.

Out of everything why you didn't mention Spinal?

JMJ_X said on July 12, 2014 at 10:04 a.m.

I understand you completely but the developers felt that they weren't ready to show gameplay of her because they want to show off there characters the most sexiest way as poissble.. its worth the wait.. Im just glad we got something new at evo.. That's all I wanted

Amerika said on July 12, 2014 at 10:10 a.m.

The combo breaker system is not "rock, paper scissors". I don't know why this keeps being stated. It's not just break lights, mediums or heavies as there is a a lot of timing involved with them, manuals being factored in, character traits like Jago's around the world and TJ's ability to change strength between hits etc. etc.

So yeah, stop doing that :)

On topic though I REALLY do not like air counter breakers at all. There are already plenty of CB's in the game and more just seems dumb unless you can do it against specific characters. For example, if many of Maya's combos are in the air then have her air combos be breakable. Interrupting the flow of the game as it is with even more chances to break just seems wrong.

JMJ_X said on July 12, 2014 at 10:36 a.m.

Well Amerika it seems that you are not playing Killer Instinct the right way lol... Like to everybody take this mechanic like a grain of salt until you see it in action

Chronoless said on July 12, 2014 at 4:20 p.m.

I'm sure the guy that got 3 "P" by ApologyMan wish there was a combobreaker option, since he basically showed up to just watch ApologyMan play... lol

RpDrizzy said on July 12, 2014 at 4:33 p.m.

Is she Spanish?

AugustAPC said on July 12, 2014 at 4:41 p.m.

Look, I'm super skeptical about Iron Galaxies too. They've shown some good and some "meh". But they've barely had any time with the game. They've basically been forced to reveal stuff with the huge events that have occurred during their extremely short tenure with Killer Instinct. It's just a matter of bad timing.
To not show anything at E3 and Evo would be stupid. You might not have much to show, but you have the audience and expectations.

Teinted_Gene said on July 12, 2014 at 8:08 p.m.

my bad... he slipped my mind. But he is badass

AugustAPC said on July 12, 2014 at 8:33 p.m.

I like the barefoot look, too.
I actually think she needs her crown/tiara back, too. That gives off a "royal" presence as well.

ZeDudd said on July 13, 2014 at 5:29 p.m.


Rampage_23 said on July 14, 2014 at 5:07 p.m.

Uhhhh... this favors Sadira... what are you talking about?

tbogard said on July 14, 2014 at 6:26 p.m.

looks like beyonce x rihanna...


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