1.Switch charge stun air poison web smoke charge lightning shave hook stun shave. This is the basic combo that takes off >60% of your health, minus the L/R damage portion in between major steps (they are just damage filler). It has no cooldown longer than 24s involved, and it’s coming over and over and over until you die. The switch can be prevented by iframes, but not by anything else, and you won’t be able to act before the stun lands. If your opponent lags or hesitates on the combo, you might be able to act in between, so feel free to mash the hell out of Searing Strike or Typhoon if you’re in a bad way. Note that they can only use switch while OUT of stealth.
2.Lotus of Escape gives them an extra stun break. Just don’t let them get too far, or they’ll plant it and rear charge so that you can’t do jack for damage before they teleport back across the arena and re-stealth or re-initiate. Best to be near it if possible.
3.Lotus Fury is the 5-hit combo they will use when left out of stealth. They are immune for the duration and for 1 second afterward. Bonus points, they will usually use Decoy (counter) afterward, or Hook Kick to restealth.
4.In addition to the switch stun, if you are hit with Throwing Dagger, you can also be hit with an infinite-range rear charge daze. You can see the silly looking pink man debuff icon if you get hit by Throwing Dagger. Throwing Dagger only comes while IN stealth. Throwing Dagger can be deflected or blocked.
5.Ice Mine can be prevented with iframes only, same as Turning Leaf (switch). Even Typhoon is penetrated. I see this ability rarely in Platinum anyhow.
6.Stealth lasts 6 seconds in most cases, except Smoke Screen which is 10 seconds. Knowing this will help you judge when he’s going to exit stealth and then try to switch combo you. Note that if you’re in CC, his Shadow Dash puts him in stealth for 6 seconds if he hits you from behind and has a 6-second cooldown.
7.Shadowless Step is the one you often see early in a fight, where the Assassin appears above your back and then falls down. It has a 60s cooldown and stuns you if you’re not spinning, or blinds you if you’re not in iframes. You can’t counter it in any way since he’ll be invulnerable while bouncing 8m behind you, so don’t worry too much about it — just make sure you’re spinning for it, or you’ll get stunned, and that would be very bad.
A few other considerations:
1.This should go without saying, but use Persistence and daze variant Gust. You can’t Fury a semi-competent Assassin. He’s got 2 stun escapes, and your stun protection is useless against him.
2.Unless your ping is absolutely spectacular, most people go with the standard T2S3 Deflect Hurricane and T2S3 defense break Knee. If you’re in Austin, you can use T3S1 Hurricane and T2S1 Knee, which penetrate Decoy and can offer you the opportunity to grab or just Knee through it — and even if you screw up, you’ll penetrate the 50% evade and knock him right out of stealth when he ends up behind you. Bonus points, no one has any idea what the *cricket* blue spin even is, so lower-tier players may be paralyzed with confusion. =P
3.T2S3 Knee and Piledriver disable use of Decoy. Piledriver is a trap, though, because Shruiken Flurry lands before you regain control after Piledriver. You probably know that already. Using one of those is a good time to force him to use his tab escape.
4.If you’re terribly lucky, Ram can give you the iframes you need to avoid Turning Leaf. You can afford to take some risks with your iframes here and there over the fight. You’ll need the luck, and your opponent can’t afford to get onto you.
5.5m Axe Sweep is a given. Helps to take defense penetration to avoid Decoy in rare cases, or to penetrate ground counter after Power Slam. Their counters are especially nasty because they stun you, which gives them another combo to overwhelm your defenses.
6.Helps to have 5m Judgement for poking to break stealth. He still has 50% RNG evade, though, so don’t think you can rely on it. Also, can be bad about proccing his counter.