Disclaimer: not ridden a cloud yet, just trying to make some sense of the feedback from riders who have ridden it.
I watched an advanced rider shredding on a surfboard with the 13M Cloud in 10-14 mph wind, carving turns I like a maniac.
Did he have to depower the kite so as to not be pulled off the pocket?
Was there a moving wall pushing him towards the kite while he linked his turns?
Some people have commented on the occasional “luffing” the kite exhibits. This is true, and it is analogous to a sail. When a sail is luffing, it needs to be sheeted to return to the optimal aerodynamic shape. A quick sheet adjustment tightens up the kite and you know you are back to optimum aerodynamic performance. Also, this kite needs some power for steering, if the kite is fully depowered your steering is limited.
One of the most important characteristics of a surf kite is steering/reactiveness with slack lines.
There are two kinds of slack line scenarios: one is the slack of the backlines from depowering the kite (what you do in order to not pulled off the pocket), the other is the slack of all lines from riding towards the kite (which happens when turns are not tight enough and/or onshore wind components are involved). In the first, small angles of attack are involved. In the second, not necessarily.
Both kinds of slack (and usually a combination of the two) happen all the time in the surf. Which of the two happens the most will depend on style/conditions.
Am I wrong in assuming that a depowered slouch is also a slack line (in the riding towards the kite sense) slouch, or could it be that at higher angles of attack the kite behaves a bit better?
In other words: when you ride towards the kite and generate slack in the lines with the bar fully pulled in, how does it respond to steering? Does it also luff?