Injustice Demo

2 Apr

As I blogged recently, I am really looking forward to Injustice: Gods Among Us, a fighting game based on DC’s pantheon of heroes and villains. Towards the end of last week, the producers announced a demo was going to be released for the Xbox and PS 3 this week. The demo was supposed to be released tomorrow for Xbox, but I was pleasantly surprised to see that it came out this morning. Having played through the demo’s tier of fights for all three characters, I feel like it was time to share my thoughts for anyone considering getting the game.

The demo has three playable characters, two of whom were obvious and the third was a pleasant surprise. For fans of the DCU, there are three main characters, Batman, Wonder Woman, and Superman. The first two made the cut for the demo, while Superman was replaced by his arch-nemesis, Lex Luthor, in a powersuit. This allowed for a variety of play styles to be shown however. Batman is the quick, tech based character. He has many of his toys and uses them. My favorite move for him was a move where he latches his grappling hook around someone and then is yanked toward them, where he can deliver a massive strike. Wonder Woman is not as fast but seems to be a little stronger. The best part about being Wonder Woman is, that with the push of a button, her play style can change. Sometimes she uses her sword and shield, and at other times, she is more of a distance based character, utilizing her lasso of truth. Finally, Lex is the power player in his mechanized suit prepared to fight Superman. My 8 year old son specifically loved playing as Lex and found his staff to be very helpful. And though you cannot play as Doomsday in the demo, I was surprised he was the boss of the demo, because he wasn’t mentioned as a character in the demo!

There is one stage available to play in the demo. It is Gotham City at night, which makes sense, because if you are familiar with the comics or movies, it is night for like 93% of the time in Gotham. The stage has two parts: one is down in the street at the infamous Crime Alley and the other is on the police headquarters, beside the ever present bat-signal. The demo does a fine job of showcasing how the interactive elements of the stage work. I must confess, I preferred being Batman because on the ground, Batman can repeatedly slide the trash dump at his opponents, meanwhile the other characters are stuck with throwing things once at opponents. One thing I hadn’t really seen in the video footage from the game before today occurred at a hotel on the far right of the ground floor. Lex and Wonder Woman (I didn’t try as Batman) can jump up and rip part of the sign off the wall and crash it on to the opposing player. On the roof, I had a lot of fun knocking the water tower on my enemies.

One thing I could not pull off was starting the transition to the next part of the stage. I don’t know if all levels will have multiple platforms, but the demo, as previously described is broken into two parts. When you are near the edge of the screen, some sort of attack will launch your enemy to the next part, where they be injured from the trip. Some stages have other characters hidden on the stage who will attack the unlucky tossed character. For example, Arkham Asylum has Killer Croc, the Riddler, Penguin, and Two-face in a room that characters get tossed into. The four each attack the player, before tossing him along. In the Gotham stage found in the demo, however, your character can get knocked into a chemical trick on the ground. The resulting explosion launches you to the roof. This happened to me several times. Meanwhile, from the roof, you can get knocked off, into another building, where you land on the railroad tracks, just in time to be hit by a train and knocked to the street. That happened to me once and was highly entertaining.

Each character gets one special move. These moves are based on a meter at the bottom of the screen. When it fills, tapping the right and left triggers together activates it. As long as you are close enough for an initial hit to connect with your opponent, you hit them with your special move. I missed a few times before I realized this. Batman’s move has been seen in most of the videos, but was easily my favorite of the three playable characters. He shocks his opponent before having the batmobile’s autopilot hit them. Wonder Woman brings in two Amazonian guards who attack before she stabs her opponent. Lex hits enemies with a powerful satellite based lazer. Doomsday, though, had my favorite special move. He pounds his opponent through the center of the earth, into the ocean on the other side of the planet, and then back. My two sons and I “had” to let Doomsday do it to us in our final bouts, just so we could see this over the top attack.

Play seems more like a Street Fighter game than a Mortal Kombat game which is amazing, because it was made by the people who make the MK games. But this makes me happy because I have always been bigger fan of Capcom’s fighter. Back works your block and most of the special moves are done by a down, diagonal, forward + attack combination of controls. This allowed me to see what the characters are capable of and I soon felt like I had played the game for years.

So is the game worth it? I LOVED it. My daughter came in right after I had first tested it and heard me giggling like a school girl. I invited her to try first of the kids and she loved it to and was soon laughing out loud also. Meanwhile, the demo only showcases the bare minimum of what the game entails. In addition to the three demo characters, there are 21 other characters on disc for you to play as. A DLC pack will feature four more characters, giving players 26 fighters to choose from. There are many more bases too, each with their own interactive elements. The story mode promises to be over 10 hours (long for a fighting game) and shifts from character to character, which makes sense to me. And finally, the STAR labs missions offers 240 different types of missions, ranging from fights with different starting circumstances, to missions based on classic games like Pong, Asteroids, and more. So I certainly recommend you preorder the game as soon as possible.

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