Injustice: Gods Among Us


By: Hadyn Green    On: Xbox 360
Published: Monday 22 Apr 2013 11:00 AM
 
 
 
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I just want to say this up front: Halfway through the story mode, Green Arrow says “shit.” It’s not a spoiler, naturally, but it tells you a little about the tone of the game. This is a not a bright, cartoon-style fighting game like Marvel vs Capcom; this is dark, like verging on Garth Ennis but staying close to Grant Morrison.

The reason for the game is, like MvC, to see superheroes and villains smash the crap out of each other and it certainly delivers on that front. But how can a character like Nightwing survive being smashed in the face by Doomsday?

Well it’s sort of explained in the story mode in a throwaway line, which is totally not a spoiler. The not-as-robust heroes take a pill “based on Kryptonian technology” that makes them as tough as Superman (but doesn’t give them laser eyes and flight.) That’s it, now keep playing the game and be happy Batman can actually hurt Superman without having to wear giant Frank Miller style armour. How it means Deathstroke’s bullets can hurt Superman, however, I’m not sure [His bullets clearly also took the pills, duh - Ed.]

There are a number of modes you can fight in. Single fight does what it says on the tin, as does Practice.

Battles are essentially a line-up of opponents you fight through one after the other. Each battle has its own handicap or theme, such as Poison where your health bar decreases throughout the fight, or Heroes where you only fight good guys. The further you get into the game, the more Battle-types you unlock.

Star Labs is a sort of training and mini-game mode. Each mission is based on a particular character and sees them performing a certain number of actions or simple quicktime-esque fights. Each mission has a three goals to perform; completing each goal gets you a star (because it’s Star Labs, get it?), and the stars are used to unlock newer missions. Some of the games are quite fun, such as the one where you play as Catwoman’s cat. Others are just annoying and you'll grit your teeth as you try to get three stars.

As a note you may want to complete Story Mode before playing Star Labs, as there are some minor spoilers.

Story Mode is slick. It follows a narrative and is interspersed with multiple cut scenes that are reminiscent of many recent comic book (direct to DVD) animated movies. The voice acting is, as you’d expect by now, superb, and the Joker genuinely made me laugh - though not while he was wielding his knife. Where in a comic or movie there would be a fight scene (which is quite often, when superheroes are involved), a battle is triggered.

The narrative is divided up into different characters, so for example in the first part you’ll play as Batman. It doesn’t cover all of the characters, but you get all the main ones. Also you get to see all of the alternative costumes. Sadly though once you play through the story, there’s no real incentive to replay it as the plot will never change.

The actual fighting gameplay was surprisingly simplistic. The move lists are long but not too complex and chaining combos together was simple even for a moderately terrible but enthusiastic player like myself. Each move has all of the frame data alongside it for those of you who are serious about your fighting.

I did find the combos repetitive. What I mean is that every character has roughly the same moves and none feel unique. There doesn’t seem to be that character who has incredibly complex but devastating moves.

What does separate the characters are their powers. Pressing the power button uses a unique ability for the character. For example Green Arrow has special arrows, the Flash makes his opponent move slower, and Catwoman can unleash an unblockable combo. It’s a good way to manage the “why don’t they just...?” question that you inevitably be thinking when super-powered humans battle.

The super part is certainly noticeable when the super moves are unleashed. The Joker shoots you in the face, Bane breaks your back, and Superman punches you into SPACE! Annoyingly / luckily these are easily blocked or avoided. Luckily because they can remove half your health, annoyingly because it takes a long time to fill your power meter. Combos can be enhanced by adding an extra boost to the end of them.

There are a few unlockables in the game, like costumes and backgrounds for your Hero Card (where all of your stats are collated. Costumes are unlocked by using “access cards” gained by winning battles and completing achievements (10 wins as Cyborg for example). In a cool idea, you get to choose which things you want to spend your cards on. In an annoying flipside to this, you might have a fight with Batman vs Batman where both are wearing the same outfit.

Injustice is an incredibly fun bit of fantasy fulfilment as you get to test Earth’s mightiest heroes (cough) against each other. It is also a very dark look at these heroes and villains. As you fight you gain bloody damage and the end scenes for some of the villains can be quite disturbing, unless you think the Joker setting fire to someone is something you’d like to see over and over. Now we just wait for the DLC...


The Score

Injustice: Gods Among Us Ultimate Edition
"It's enjoyable, having the power of a god."
8.8
Great
Rating: R16   Difficulty: Medium   Learning Curve: 15 Min

 

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Comments (17)

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LoftyDog
On Monday 22 Apr 2013 11:09 AM Posted by LoftyDog NZGamer.com VIP
I just wish I liked fighting games...cause this would be awesome then :(
 
 
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twisterjamz
On Monday 22 Apr 2013 11:52 AM Posted by twisterjamz NZGamer.com VIP
22 April 2013, 11:09 AM Reply to LoftyDog
I just wish I liked fighting games...cause this would be awesome then :(
For me I like fighting games but I suck at them
 
 
4
 
piratemonkey
On Monday 22 Apr 2013 11:55 AM Posted by piratemonkey NZGamer.com VIP
There is a free iOS version, that reports to give bonuses to the console version as you complete achievements .. Not a button masher.. Perhaps screen tapper is the correct term
 
 
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hadyngreen
On Monday 22 Apr 2013 12:53 PM Posted by hadyngreen
22 April 2013, 11:55 AM Reply to piratemonkey
There is a free iOS version, that reports to give bonuses to the console version as you complete achievements .. Not a button masher.. Perhaps screen tapper is the correct term
This is true I discovered it last night. You can unlock... something... if you complete tasks in the mobile version.
 
 
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Booker_T_SUCKAAA
On Monday 22 Apr 2013 4:53 PM Posted by Booker_T_SUCKAAA NZGamer.com VIP
Sounds like fun! Will try a demo, if one comes out.
 
 
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ADz_Nz
On Monday 22 Apr 2013 9:20 PM Posted by ADz_Nz
Buying this for sure, even tho im not really a fan of fighters
 
 
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Coddfish
On Wednesday 24 Apr 2013 11:48 AM Posted by Coddfish NZGamer.com VIP
For the fighting gamers: It's early days still, but this game is looking good for competitive play. Time will tell if interactables and stage transitions need to be banned, but at the moment, they really spice up competitive play without breaking anything. The characters are diverse and interesting, nobody seems over- or underpowered.

We'll have to wait and see what the game's longevity is like, but at least for now, it looks like a really tournament-worthy fighter.
 
 
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PunisherNZL
On Thursday 25 Apr 2013 10:23 AM Posted by PunisherNZL
24 April 2013, 11:48 AM Reply to Coddfish
For the fighting gamers: It's early days still, but this game is looking good for competitive play. Time will tell if interactables and stage transitions need to be banned, but at the moment, they really spice up competitive play without breaking anything. The characters are diverse and interesting, nobody seems over- or underpowered.

We'll have to wait and see what the game's longevity is like, but at least for now, it looks like a really tournament-worthy fighter.
Add me codfish always keen to vs more people on injustice. Ill warn you im a pretty mean bane lol
 
 
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atipuss
On Thursday 25 Apr 2013 9:18 PM Posted by atipuss NZGamer.com VIP
It is pretty fun for a noobie like me :)
 
 
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Jas
On Friday 26 Apr 2013 12:48 AM Posted by Jas NZGamer.com VIP
played the demo and enjoyed it, might give this game a rent to see what the full game is like
 
 
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gooseman77
On Friday 26 Apr 2013 11:11 AM Posted by gooseman77
22 April 2013, 04:53 PM Reply to Booker_T_SUCKAAA
Sounds like fun! Will try a demo, if one comes out.
Played the demo. Made me want to rip my thumbs off and shove them up NetherRealm's nether region. I have seen better button set-ups on a elevator.

And BTW Superman could Shoryuken the sun; WTF could Catwoman do? Give everyone krypto-herpes? I like my fantasy realistic ;)
 
 
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PunisherNZL
On Friday 26 Apr 2013 1:38 PM Posted by PunisherNZL
26 April 2013, 11:11 AM Reply to gooseman77
Played the demo. Made me want to rip my thumbs off and shove them up NetherRealm's nether region. I have seen better button set-ups on a elevator.

And BTW Superman could Shoryuken the sun; WTF could Catwoman do? Give everyone krypto-herpes? I like my fantasy realistic ;)
There is nothing wrong with the button system they are set up so well infact that even somebody who gets enjoyment from elevators could appreciate it. Also if you took the time to read the review that you commented on you would understand how catwoman has a chance against superman. I couldn't recommend this game enough. If your a fan of the story, the comic series is worth a look at its great it explains alot more of the backstory. I got the 1st issue with my collectors edition and ive been getting more and more of them threw my phone for about $2 an issue.
 
 
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Eviltoothpicky
On Saturday 27 Apr 2013 11:42 AM Posted by Eviltoothpicky
I have to agree that if I was a fan of fighting games, I would be all over this. But even though I'm not, it's on my "I could rent it" list.
 
 
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cantyman7
On Sunday 28 Apr 2013 8:11 PM Posted by cantyman7
Yeah looks like a good game. I think fighting games need to build up their stories like this one to maintain popularity in the long run
 
 
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stupidlikeafox
On Monday 29 Apr 2013 3:21 PM Posted by stupidlikeafox NZGamer.com VIP
played through the story mode and really enjoyed it! the main story's the best ive seen in a fighter, the fighting itself i never mastered but has great potential and ill be watching out for this one once its selling for under $40...
 
 
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dvant1
On Monday 6 May 2013 3:48 PM Posted by dvant1
I don't know if it's the trailer i saw of this, but the moves looked choppy and not really fluid. Will have to keep my eye on this one, i don't mind fighters.
 
 
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rocketman12
On Tuesday 7 May 2013 9:16 AM Posted by rocketman12 NZGamer.com VIP
I would love to play this, but to many buttons to try and remember all the combos lol
 
 
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