Putting superheroes into fighting games has always seemed like a bit of a challenge, creating that perfect mix of raw combat with the rich lore of the characters you’re playing as has just never been pulled off all that well. Thankfully those wonderful people over at NetherRealm, the guys behind the most recent Mortal Kombat game have been given the keys to the Batmobile along with a strong lineup of DC characters to try and make another successful fighting game.
Injustice has all the classic super hero’s of DC going toe to toe, what more do you want?
Usually most fighting games will fall down at the first hurdle, the story. It might sound a bit crazy but we’ve moved away from the days of playing Mortal Kombat at the local arcade with a joystick and 6 buttons. The story behind a game matters and when you have the roster that NetherRealm have got, the story has to hold up.
The good news is that Injustice has a great story, you’ll play a variety of different characters through 50 or so battles, the story is set in a different universe where Superman has lost all faith in mankind and decided to use his power to ‘protect’ and rule the world. As your team is gradually teleported over to this universe, you will meet your characters counterparts and try and stop Superman with the help of some heroes in this universe.
The story is well told and whilst it all seems a little simple, everything is very fluid and you’ll find yourself in and out of fights seamlessly. Another thing that is really nice with Injustice is how they don’t stick with the general heroes vs villains’ story, there’s more of an underlying dynamic here that is a fresh approach on the general consensus.
Injustice brings a impressive roster of 24 characters, all of which have varied move sets and feel more than capable of laying down some pain. Seeing as some of these characters will be very new to most, it’s rather impressive that NetherRealm have forged their moves in a fair and pleasing way. Each character will have their own super move which can be used when your meter is full, this will deal a huge amount of damage in a short cut scene. Whilst these are very cool I would have loved to see some variety with them, you will very quickly know everyone’s super move and it would have been great if each character had at least 2 or 3.
A lot of work went into the level design within Injustice, players can use objects within the levels depending on their character types. Strong characters will pick up and hurl huge cars, whilst the more agile characters will bounce off them to create distance. Players can also be smashed against certain pieces of scenery and of course the level transitions are pretty cool. You may witness Batman smash Superman through 6 different levels of buildings to then be hit by a train or something crazy like that. Mortal Kombat has been dealing with level transitions for quite some time, but it feels like it fits within Injustice.
Another addition is the wager system; within your battles wagers may also be throw down, this is where two players will try and go for a move at the same time and you will have to wager a certain portion of your meter to try and win the outcome. It’s a very cool way of breaking up the combat and it adds a terrific cut scene when you are watching these two characters go at each other for a huge head on collision.
Asides from the single player campaign, there are hundreds of hours to be had within the S.T.A.R.S Labs with over 240 missions each with a few different objectives, these stand in place of Mortal Kombats challenge towers. On top of this is the traditional Battle mode where players will fight a number of opponents, there are a number of different towers, some have specific requirements whilst some may make you only face heroes/villains or fighting with a single health bar.
NetherRealm have created a well balanced fighter whilst sticking true to their roots and whats nice is they have been bold enough to try new things where they can. Underneath all the crazy fighting there are underlying needs for tactics to win, without the use of a block button players are forced to think carefully about their moves. With the ability to create some outstanding combos players will feel like they have truly earned each victory. Even the new round system that they have implemented makes for interesting tactics, instead of a round simply ending and starting again, when a players first health bar is depleted the match stops for a matter of seconds with a quirky comment from the winning character and then it continues. This means if someone has a tiny bit of their first health bar left you don’t want to be wasting your super move on them because it will only do enough damage to take out the first bar.
Using Meter Burn allows you to perform advanced game winning techniques.
Injustice offers a very similar online experience to Mortal Kombat with King of the Hill, 1 vs 1 and survivor, its a solid online system but I did find myself waiting a while for a game at times. It’s simple enough to play against friends and hone your skills online. Finally the Archive system acts as the Krpyt from Mortal Kombat, players can spend their points to unlock different cards, these will give you access to different costumes, character pictures and designs and much more.
Whilst Injustice offers a solid fighting style and a great all round game it isn’t without its flaws, it would be the minor things that could have made this game just that little better. The first thing is tag mode! I mean they had a tag system in the iOS game, so why it couldn’t be in the real thing I will never know. I’m not saying the story should’ve been tag team style but it would have been great to have it as an option.
I would’ve also liked to see a variety in maps, whilst there are a lot of different ones you feel like a lot are simply recycled. Having Bruce Wayne’s mansion at night and in the day as 2 different maps just seems a little lazy. Finally and probably the biggest thing is the super moves, these are awesome to see and they do really well in offering a cool set piece, but once you have seen them all that’s it, there is no diversification. If each character had 2 or 3 different super moves it would have just been so good to see.
With all of that being said Injustice is simply a great fighter. You get to see the best DC characters go at it in head to head combat, with awesome combos, great map interaction and a solid story you will find hundreds of hours to be had here. With all the potential DLC characters available Injustice will be a fighter that I will be playing for years to come.
- Great character representation
- Well thought out combat techniques
- Seeing Batman vs Superman is amazing
- Repetitve Supers
- No Tag mode