1 Meter: HP double > medium Eye Laser > HP double > light Eye Laser > HP double > light Blade Dash > Shadow Plasma Slice ender (52%)
2 Meter: HP double > light Eye Laser > HP double > light Eye Laser > HP double > Shadow Blade Dash > Shadow Plasma Slice ender (61%)
( Damage calculation notes)
Notes: Fulgore's Auto-Triples combo trait is great for reactor spin speed, but sacrifices a lot of damage because the combo cannot build to level 4, so other combos are preferred. For the 0 and 1-meter combos, doing three light Eye laser linkers works, but you can squeak in a medium Eye Laser at the start while the combo scaling is lower, then make up the time later by doing a faster but less damaging light Blade Dash. You'll get an extra 1% damage if you can put it in your muscle memory. For the 2-meter punish, though, this trick won't allow you to fit in a shadow move at the end, so doing only light Eye Lasers gives the most damage.
Fulgore earns meter differently than any other character in the game. The shadow gauge is replaced with a reactor gauge, which can hold a maximum of 10 pips; the first 4 pips are colored green, the next 4 are yellow, and the last 2 are red. To perform a shadow move or shadow counter, Fulgore must spend 4 pips, which means he can actually hold the equivalent of 2.5 shadow stocks, a higher capacity than any other character besides Omen. However, Fulgore will never gain meter by attacking or blocking attacks. Instead, he earns meter at a set rate, which is denoted by the reactor spinner and the blue bar above the pips. The blue bar slowly grows at a constant rate, and when it hits maximum, Fulgore earns another pip and the blue bar resets.
When Fulgore attacks with any normal attack and certain special attacks (Blade Dash, Plasma Slice, any linker), on block or on hit, the entire reactor gauge will flash yellow, indicating that Fulgore has increased his reactor speed. The spinner will spin faster, causing the blue bar to increase its speed, which earns Fulgore meter faster. When Fulgore is knocked down, or performs any special move deemed to be an "Energy System" (Energy Bolt, Eye Laser, Plasmaport), the reactor gauge will flash red, which will decrease his reactor speed and slow Fulgore's meter gain. The end result is that using Fulgore's strong zoning and runaway tools will cause him to earn meter slower, while pressuring your opponent will make him earn it faster. At its slowest, Fulgore gains one pip about every 10 seconds (ouch). At its fastest, Fulgore will earn a pip about every 2.5 seconds.
Why is his meter divided into these little pips? Because Fulgore can spend one pip to cancel a non-Plasmaport special move into another special move (with some caveats; he can't cancel out of blocked Blade Dash, he can't cancel out of his Plasma Slice uppercut, and he specifically can't cancel an Energy Bolt fireball into Eye Laser to prevent uncrackable zoning while in instinct). While Plasmaport is the exception to this rule, Plasmaport has very little recovery and normal and special moves can be performed slightly before Fulgore has reappeared for no cost, so you will often see Fulgore's teleport used in conjunction with pip cancels.
The applications for pip canceling are incredibly diverse. Throw a fireball and your opponent jumped? Doesn't matter, spend a pip to cancel it into uppercut for foolproof anti-air. Want to mix your opponent up? Cancel an Energy Bolt fireball into another fireball, then into a Plasmaport for a left-right mixup, and then throw or attack them. You can continually cancel special moves until you run out of pips, which means Fulgore can either be an incredibly strong zoner, or impossible to block rushdown character, as long as he spends his pips wisely and has the mental energy to keep up. Because he gains them at a set rate, if you can weather the storm or pressure him at the start of a match, there will be moments in the match where he can't go crazy.
Fulgore also gains benefits if his meter hits certain levels. When the first 4 green pips are full, he earns a substantial buff to his forward walk speed, making him scary in footsies. At 8 pips full, he earns a buff to his backwards walk speed, and when the whole meter is full, he gains faster and farther forward and backwards dashes and access to the Devastation Beam shadow move. Devastation Beam spends all 10 pips, but fires a giant red laser across the screen in 1 frame (after 5 frames of vulnerable pre-freeze startup; this is not a reversal) which does 31% raw damage and enough white damage to make your next hit a level 4 ender (when blocked, the move does the same amount of white damage). It's a very costly move, but because Fulgore can charge meter during instinct mode, he should be able to gain access to one of these per match without forgoing a ton of meter usage. If you connect with Devastation Beam, Fulgore earns a hard knockdown which allows him to apply a teleport mixup. If you succeed with your mixup, doing a short combo into an ender will cash out to a strong level 4 ender immediately, which can reward you with a further 50% damage. Even though the beam is expensive, this one-two punch coupled with the beam's insanely fast startup makes Fulgore an extreme threat from anywhere on the screen if he's willing to save the shadow meter.
Fulgore has two primary openers. He charges at his opponent with his blade during Blade Dash, a safe on block forward-traveling move which can be held in place if you hold the kick button. Holding it typically only has uses for certain post-knockdown setups, so it's more common to just use it as a normal block string finisher. Eye Laser can be fired in three different ways, depending on the button press, and the light and medium versions should be preferred for close range pressure because it causes more pushback than Blade Dash, allowing Fulgore to keep his turn more easily and might cause his opponent to swing and miss. Because light and medium Eye Lasers are low attacks, they can be particularly effective if you cancel it off an overhead for a quick high-then-low block string which will very frequently surprise opponents.
Additionally, you can pip cancel one of these low Eye Lasers into Blade Dash during your pressure, which will frame trap someone trying to take their turn back. Fulgore remains safe on block and it will force your opponent to really think about whether he wants to swing after blocking Eye Laser; in fast-paced KI, this can generate a lot of scrambles that Fulgore will come out winning much more often than not, and Fulgore's opponent will often feel like it's never his turn to attack. Shadow Plasmaport is a 5-hit shadow move which always teleports behind the opponent before attacking, but its tracking properties are poor, making it hard to hit moving opponents. It is useful in certain punish situations where the opponent is far away, though, like perhaps a Glacius summoning Shatter, or punishing a Shadow Jago player after you've blocked Dark Catastrophe.
Heavy Eye Laser is a slow but full screen laser attack that is fired at around chest height and causes a stagger. It is a pretty strong space control move, and forcing opponents from full screen away to deal with it on occasion is a good idea. On hit, the stagger allows Fulgore to link into shadow Plasmaport for a combo. Energy Bolt, like most other fireballs in the game, allows Fulgore to continue a combo by connecting a manual.
Eye Laser looks a little different as a linker compared to its neutral form. It shoots one, two, or three lasers into the torso; it's the more damaging of the two linkers, and you can't beat the cool factor of a robot shooting lasers from its eyes while it's comboing you. Meanwhile, the sadly laser-less Blade Dash will push the opponent closer to the corner and execute faster. Shadow Plasmaport is not worth the meter as a linker; if you're going to choose to spend bar on shadow linkers instead of in Fulgore's neutral game, use shadow Blade Dash, as it's a fast attack that can really tack on damage during a lockout.
Fulgore is surprisingly limited with his enders. To do your damage, you will need to use his Plasma Slice ender. He actually has two launcher enders, both of which launch the opponent directly in front of Fulgore. He can attack the opponent as they're falling with an attack such as standing HK, which boots the opponent across the screen and gives a hard knockdown. Fulgore can then cancel the standing HK into a nasty fireball/teleport mixup using some pips if he wants, or retreat and reestablish his strong zoning game. In essence, Fulgore will either choose to finish his combo with damage, or he will be applying some form of mixup with one of the other enders, as all the others lead into setups of some kind.
Fulgore's instinct allows him to perform free pip canceled special moves for its duration, giving Fulgore much improved rushdown and zoning potential. It is especially noticeable with Fulgore's zoning, since he can perform triple Energy Bolts and heavy Eye Lasers repeatedly, and opponents will have to block and hold a high amount of chip damage or else take a risk to escape. At any time, Fulgore can turn this zoning into rushdown by canceling for free into teleport. With enough of a grasp on the inputs required, Fulgore can be all over the screen causing terror anywhere he pleases. It is important to note, though, that Fulgore's reactor works the same way as before, which means all zoning actions cause the reactor to spin more slowly. While you won't have to pay the cost to pip cancel in instinct, if you go too overboard with the zoning, you may find yourself starved for meter the rest of the round, as your spin speed will be rock bottom. To help support Fulgore's meter, Fulgore can also immediately charge 1 pip by pressing HP+HK during instinct. Mix this in occasionally during your pip-canceled zoning while your opponent is focused on blocking, and you should be able to sneak in some free pips for later use.
For a rushdown Fulgore, everything is about Plasmaport and Eye Laser. Watch out for multiple Plasmaports following ranged fireballs, close normals, or any number of mid-combo resets. The low-hitting Eye Lasers are negative on block but unpunishable by normals, and the medium Eye Laser in particular causes a fair bit of pushback, so Fulgore gets to maintain a lot of his momentum when he uses them in block strings with the correct spacing. His Plasma Slice uppercut can be canceled on hit or block into the air version of shadow Eye Laser in an attempt to catch an opponent's punish. It costs 4 pips like all shadows, a high price to pay for meter-starved Fulgore, and it's unsafe if your opponent doesn't take the bait, but it's an option that works from time to time.