Review of Injustice: Gods Among Us

Injustice-Gods-Among-Us

“We’re not gods. We don’t decide who lives and who dies.”

***Contains Some Plot Spoilers***

Back in 2009 when Mortal Kombat vs DC Universe came out I wished they would make a fighting game of exclusively DC characters, well 4 years later I finally got my wish.

I have been very excited about this game since I first heard of it last year. I even preordered the collectors edition and got a cool Wonder Woman/Batman figurine and some skins inspired by the Red Son tpb. Sadly I was away for work and only got the game last Wednesday. Overall I really enjoy this game and see myself spending countless more hours playing it. As with most things it is not perfect.

I’ll start with the characters. We have 12 heroes and 12 villains. We of course have the standard ones that everybody knows; Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Joker, Lex Luthor, Catwoman, etc. We also have some lesser known characters like Raven and Killer Frost. DC has announced that they are releasing 4 downloadable characters by August, the first of which will be Lobo.

I like the characters they included. My only desire is for more characters. I would love to see Swamp Thing, Black Canary, Ocean Master, Mirror Master, I mean DC has been around for long enough that they have A LOT of characters to choose from. I could have done with out Ares, I have no interest in Lobo and I would have liked to see Zatanna instead of Raven.

Each character has the basic kicks and punches, and throws. They each have thier unique combos and special moves that you expect from a fighting game. They do not have “finishing moves”. There is a power bar that can be used to either boost the characters special move or execute their “Super Power”. Super Powers are elaborate moves that are both unrealistic(even for a comic book inspired video game) and entertaining. While I laugh every time I play Superman and uppercut someone into the atmosphere, fly up and then punch them back to Earth, that would destroy most people. But hey, it’s a game and like I said they are entertaining. The Super Power moves all do between 31-36% damage. They are not unblockable but more often than not they hit home.

The levels are all highly interactive. You are able to pick up and throw objects, throw your opponent into stuff, even use things to jump off of. The interactivity even scales to the strength of your character. Superman will throw a dumpster, while Batman pushes the same dumpster. Each level also has “transitions”. If you hit someone the right way at the edges of each area you can trigger a cinematic that deals a great deal of damage and lands your adversary in another part of that level. I think these are a little overpowered. Like the Super Power moves they deal about 33% damage, but are A LOT easier to land. There is a Trophy/Achievement for doing it three times in a match(landing you back where you started) and it is not that hard to earn. I did it with out even trying for it. Many of them incorporate other DC characters; Darkseid, Atom Smasher, Killer Croc and several others. Like the Super Powers they are amusing as well. Throwing someone through a building, or into the rec room at Arkham is just plain funny.

The game can be played in several modes. You have the story mode which has a pretty good story regarding an alternate Earth that several of “our heroes” get pulled to. The story is set up in the comic Injustice: Gods Among Us, but reading the comic is not required, you can still follow the plot. Basically following the tragic death of Lois Lane and destruction of Metropolis, Superman goes mad and recruits other heroes to “enforce” the peace. I won’t spoil everything, the story is pretty good, even if similar stories have already been told. You either play as or fight all 24 characters. There are even several times when you fight yourself. My hardest fights were against the Sinestro Corps Hal Jordan and the “evil” Superman. I found that if you lost a fight that the retry was easier, most of the time. The story has some great cinematics and features some great voice acting. Kevin Conroy, SUsan Eisenberg and George Newburn once again lend their talents to voice Batman, Wonder Woman and Superman. And if you think that Catwoman sounds like Nova from Starcracft II it’s because they are both voiced by Grey Delisle.

There is also a S.T.A.R. Labs mode and Battle mode. S.T.A.R. Labs featured a series of missions for each character. On each mission you can earn up to 3 stars, depending on how many goals you accomplish. The goals vary from using certain moves, only taking a certain amount of damage or defeating your opponent in a certain amount of time. You need to earn a certain number of stars to get to the higher missions. I think they are fun and add an interesting challenge to the game.

Speaking of challenge, we have the Battle mode. There is the Classic Battle, where you pick a character and fight ten random characters. Other modes are just heroes, or just villains. Some your health bar constantly decreases, or you have to beat your opponent in less than 30 seconds, or you can’t lose a single match in the whole 10 matches. There is also Impossible mode where you have to defeat all 24 characters with a single health meter. A tip of my hat if you can accomplish that one. You start off with a few and others can be unlocked as you level up. During every fight you gain experience and as you level up you gain access keys and armory cards that can unlock additional skins, concept art and additional battle modes.

Of course you have Multiplayer mode, which can be done locally or online. You also have single fight, just a quick vs AI fight as well as training. The tutorial is very good and walks you through all of the game mechanics. I strongly recommend going through the whole tutorial before playing the story, that way you have some idea of what you are doing.

Overall, I think this is a great game. Sure some of the characters are a little over powered, but that is what update patches are for. I really hope they add more characters(aside from the planned 4) and that they are better than Lobo. I also hope they offer the pre-order skins as DLC. It bothers me that you got different skins depending on where you bought the game. If you are a DC fan or a fighting game fan I recommend picking this up. There is very little blood and Green Arrow says shit a few times, but other than that the game doesn’t have anything really inappropriate in it.

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