COLUMN: Aaron’s Backstage Pass: Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment’s Injustice
Mortal Kombat is one of my favorite video games ever. I first played it back in 1991 when it was released in the arcade and it was unlike anything I had ever seen. It was gory and the characters looked real and it was a tough game to beat. Over the years there have been many sequels. Some of the sequels have been better than others, but I have played them all and I really enjoyed them.
This week I received a review copy of Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment and NetherRealm Studios “Injustice: Gods Among Us” for the PS3. This game is one of the best fighting games I have played and it is mind blowing.
“Injustice” is a fighting game that features all of the top name DC Comic superheroes and villains and they must fight against each other. All of the characters are well known and there are a few that only die hard DC and comic book fans will know.
The roster includes: Batman, Superman, Joker, Lex Luthor, Catwoman, Bane, Wonder Woman, Flash, Green Lantern, Green Arrow, Solomon Grundy, Cyborg, Harley Quinn and many more.
I was very happy with all of the characters that you could choose from and I think it was a great mix of superheroes and villains. I also really like the fact that the superheroes are on the left side of the screen and the villains are on the right.
I really liked the story a lot and thought that it made a lot of sense. I was wondering what major event was going to take place to have all of the DC superheroes and villains fighting each other.
The story was new and very creative. I also really liked the fact that it was not spoiled before the game was released. Normally video game stories are leaked through video game websites and forums, but “Injustice’s” story was not and I was very surprised.
I really don’t want to spoil the story because I really think it’s pretty amazing and it is very surprising. I just want to say that The Joker, Superman and Batman play major roles in the story.
The graphics are amazing and all of the characters look fabulous. They are very detailed and you would swear they were real people right in front of you. The backgrounds and stages look amazing and are also very detailed. The lighting is perfect. The Bat Cave is dark and dimly lit and you feel like you are there. The cinematic scenes in the story mode look unbelievable
The controls are very easy to learn and when you first start the game you can go through a tutorial which is very helpful. It explains all of the different moves and button combinations. It also shows you what buttons you need to push to do a specific move. I really enjoyed this feature a lot and I know a lot of people will find it very helpful. I also think that anyone picking up a fighting game for the first time will have no problems figuring out how to play it.
Each character has their own unique special moves and it’s really fun to learn what they can do. At any time during the game you can pause it and look at all of the moves. This was also very helpful.
Every character has a meter at the bottom of the screen and when it fills up they can do their own unique special move. For instance Superman will knock the guy way up into the air and they actually go into outer space, Superman then flies up and knocks them back down to Earth. The animations look amazing.
The wage meter is also a new feature and can only be used once per fight. You have two bars of health and when you reach your second bar which is red you can activate the wage meter. You have to push towards the other player and the “R2” button and an action sequence appears.
Here you must wager a certain amount of health and depending on how much health you have is how much you can wager. If you wager more than the other player you win and will gain either more health or do a ton of damage.
Everything happens very quickly so you must be quick on your decision. Once you select your wager, a really awesome cut scene happens where both players will run at each other and eventually do an attack at the same time. The player who wagered the most will knock the other player back. I really liked this feature and thought that it was a great thing to use in a pinch.
There is also a combo system in the game that is fairly easy to learn. If you hit a combination of buttons you can link a series of moves together and it looks pretty cool. Then once you get the basic combos down then you can add in the character’s special moves to make an ever bigger combo.
Each character also has a special power button. If this is activated the character does more damage for a short period of time. I really thought this was a great new feature and it really helped out in battles.
One of the neatest things in “Injustice” in my opinion is that the backgrounds are all interactive. There are cars and missiles and other things in every level and you can use these things to damage the other player. Every character also reacts differently to each object. For instance if you are Batman and there is a car, you will hit the other player into it. However, if you are someone that has super strength like Superman, you will pick up the car over your head and smash it into them.
I really liked this feature a lot and thought it added so much to the gameplay.
You can also knock the other player through walls or off buildings. Every stage has their own unique way of sending the other player to another level. I really liked trying to do this in every stage because each one had a different effect and the animations once again looked amazing.
There are so many different features that make “Injustice: Gods Among Us” a great game in my opinion. The features include:
Story Mode: You can play the actual game and as you clear chapters you can go back and play them.
Training: You can practice every character’s moves
Battles: There a bunch of different scenarios that you can play through. For instance, you have to beat a bunch of opponents in 30 seconds. All of these battles can be unlocked.
S.T.A.R. Labs: You have to complete a series of missions with each character and each objective is different. These are amazing and I could not get enough of them. There are 240 of these awesome missions.
- Single Battle: You can choose to play just a one on one fight.
The online/multiplayer for “Injustice: Gods Among Us” is fun and I have spent many hours playing with people from all over the world.
I thought the online was great and I was able to find matches easily. Another thing that I noticed was that during the matches there was not any lag or disconnects so that was great to see.
There are also a bunch of different options that you can do online and they include:
Ranked Match: Your wins and losses are recorded and you are ranked with all of the players from around the world.
Player Match: You can just play for fun and your wins and losses are not recorded.
Join Room: Here you can find different rooms where certain players are located. Some may say beginners and you know that these are players who are not very experienced and if you are not as well this would be a great room to join. Once in the room you can challenge any of the players to VS. match or a King of the Hill Match. The Kink of the Hill Match is really cool. It’s a room full of players and the person that wins a match stays on the top and the next player in lines tries to beat him. The person stays on top as long as they win. If they lose then they go to the bottom of the line and have to wait until it’s their turn.
Create A Room: You can create your own room and hope other players will come into it.
- Leaderboards: You can see who the top “Injustice” players are.
Another really cool feature about the online is that there is a daily challenge and it changes every day. If you complete that challenge then you gain experience points. I thought this was a great idea and it gives players something to look forward to every day.
As you play “Injustice” you will gain experience points for just about everything you do. When you get enough your character will level up. You can see what level your character is by looking at your hero card.
The Hero Card is another special feature that I also really liked. It’s basically a business card for your player. You can choose logos, characters and backgrounds. It also shows you how much experience points you have and what level your character is.
This is really helpful when you play online because you can look at the other player’s cards and see how experienced they are. By doing specific things in the game also unlocks different pictures and backgrounds for your hero card. You can look and see what you need to do for each item which I thought was great.
There is also a bonus features menu. This is where you can unlock many different things such as concept art, character models, backgrounds and additional costumes. The bonus features include:
Downloadable Content: Redeem codes and buy codes for addition characters and skins
Archives: Hero Card, Unlock Extras like battles, concept art, character models, backgrounds, additional costumes and music.
Superman Unbound: Preview for the animated film
- Credits: You can view the credits of the game
I really think Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment and NetherRealm Studios “Injustice: Gods Among Us” is an amazing game. The story is incredible and the graphics are spectacular.
The controls and combos are easy to learn and flow smoothly. I really had a lot of fun playing online and I know a lot of players will also feel the same way. If you are a huge fan of fighting games or of DC comic book characters, then I would highly suggest you pick up this game.
Aaron Chalich is a columnist for KSTP.com blogging about the latest entertainment news.