Release Date: April 16th, 2013
Developer: NetherRealm Studios
Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
Platform: [Reviewed: Xbox 360], PlayStation 3, WiiU
Rated: T for Teen
There’s no further reason to question what will Injustice be like or what will it play like? Personally, I wasn’t the biggest fan of Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe. It was fun for the moment, but lacked the chance of longevity. So let’s answer these question by stating first, yes NetherRealm, the developers of Mortal Kombat created Injustice: Gods Among Us. However, it plays nothing like Mortal Kombat, creating its own identity to the fighting world.
Before delving deep into gameplay, you’re first greeted with a tutorial coving all the basic, advance and special moves. It’s quite helpful as it teaches you how to fully comprehend the uniqueness of each character. No one character fights the same way, though some button controls are similar the same when performing combos and such.
When the real battle begins, it’s “the” true experience for the DC fans. The thought of facing your favorite hero against the villain of your choice, or the epic Superman vs Batman “dream” fight becoming reality is now about as real as it’s ever going to get.
The Kombat, excuse me…. Combat in Injustice is far more than superior. Taking over the Joker or Harley Quinn will equip you with guns and gags like a mallet or tanks of laughing gas while Batman uses batarangs as shields or to counterattack. The blueprint looks like Mortal Kombat at a glance, but the great outweighs the good.
There ARE rounds in Injustice, they’re just a more fluid method in place. As you drain your opponents full health bar, they fall to the ground momentarily, in a sense that they’ve recollected themselves from a so far, gruesome battle. The transition is performed with such finesse to where you’ll find yourself simply waiting for your opponent to get up and start swinging.
While touching on the fighting system, NetherRealm took a noticeable approach at the combo system that may either excite gamers or disappoint them. If you think to the MK combo system, you could literally perform a string combo without a pause. Injustice pays it forward through the action and the arena itself. You can perform a power strike, knocking your opponent in the air or into environmental structures and continue the combo before they can even hit the ground.
If all else fail, find a weapon and steal the advantage! Every map is fully destructible in its own way. You can grab miscellaneous items and thrown them at your opponent, blow steam pipes towards them, send explosives their way and more. If that’s not enough, you can knock them into the environmental objects or interactively onto a new map.
Now if for some reason you’re the one taking this brutal of a beating, take a moment to set a wager. When you “Set Wagers,” you’re giving yourself a fighting chance to win, tie or possibly lose health. Forward on the d-pad + RT/R2 will initiate the wager where you then follow the command prompt, choosing the amount health you want to risk through the power gague. An over the top cutscene will commence and you and your opponent will collide. Who won can easily be determined by watching your health either rise or decrease, as well as your player stand or fall in defeat.
Similar to Mortal Kombat’s X-Ray Special, Injustice have their own Special Abilities for each hero/villain. However, expect more intensity than your brain could comprehend because they are THAT incredible. Flash for example performs a mighty three punch combo that literally requires him to circle world in 4 seconds, with the velocity of a train exceeding its own limitations.
As amazing as the special moves are however, it can become pretty bland. I would’ve preferred alternate specials to switch up moves from time to time. After playing with your favorite character for a while, their doesn’t feel as “super,” but it definitely comes in hand.
Another touch of Mortal Kombat that you’ll find is the S.T.A.R. LAB. S.T.A.R. LAB serves similar to the Challenge Tower with 240 objectives to accomplish. You can rank through each objective earning 1 to 3 stars. The more stars you earn, the further you can unlock the next tier of objectives. Like the challenge tower, there are tweaks set in place for each fight.
Then, there’s Battle. Battle is the old school ladder/tower that pits you against multiple players, building up to the final character. Completing the ladder will unlock an ending story for your character, well worth the venture.
The replay value in Injustice unquestionably there. The numerous ways a battle can take place is unbelievable, genuinely changing the creativity within the fight every time!
Graphically, Injustice is quite average. Characters are well designed, it just doesn’t stand out as “high quality.” The mechanics are pretty smooth between both, direct action and pulling surrounding particles into the match. Audio is good as well, until you’ve played a handful of times with the same character. The voice shortly after become monotonous. In the story however, you’ll enjoy it all; the voiceovers the cutscenes and most importantly, the story.
Without ruining the story for you, the campaign is absolutely remarkable. At times I felt like I was watching and playing a part of an exclusive Justice League movie and the experience was surreal. Plenty of action and mini-games both tie into the story.
Injustice wasn’t created to be a button masher, so don’t expect to win much without taking a bit of time out to learn how to use your favorite characters. There’s plenty of unlockables, hero cards and more to earn as you play and level up through XP.
Injustice is a crowd pleaser. It’s one of those games that all ages will enjoy; both fans of gaming and simply DC lovers alike. This game doesn’t lean on the coattail of Mortal Kombat, it instead takes a step further and raises the bar. Other than the lack of victory cutscenes or openings causing the audio to deliver a bit of a lackluster, Injustice is one for your collection.
Overall Rating: 4.75/5