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PLATFORM Xbox360

Injustice: Gods Among Us Review

GAME INFO
publisher: Warner Bros. Entertainment
developer: NetherRealm Studios
genre: Fighting

MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS
n/a
ESRB rating: T
homepage:
www.injustice.com

release date: Apr 16, 13
» All About Injustice: Gods Among Us on ActionTrip


Okay, please bear with me, because it’s been a while since I’ve played a proper fighting game. If I remember correctly, last time I delved into the genre was when I played Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe on the Xbox 360. That means, four years ago. Didn’t have a particular desire to get into any fighting game in the meantime. The situation is a bit different with Injustice: Gods Among Us. If you ever wondered what would happened if most of your favorite superheroes got together to fight each other, this is what it would probably look like.

Similarly to Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe, Injustice: Gods Among us takes you on journey through a story mode that attempts to cover practically every superhero from the game’s rather rich character roster. NetherRealm Studios and DC Comics saw to it that every character gets enough attention, which is a good thing for people who want to see their preferred superheroes in action and if they want to learn more about them in the process.

This game faces a potentially dangerous trap, having to tackle the challenge of weaving a single tale around so many superheroes. So, a lot of good guys and a lot of villains locked in mortal combat – what’s not to like?

The comic-ish plot sees arch-villains Joker and Lex Luthor, tricking ultimate superhero Superman into killing Lois Lane (who is also pregnant). Supes loses it, kills Joker (in front of Batman no less) and proceeds to create a new world order where he controls everything. Superman? Really? Wow, he’s definitely batshit insane. Batman does the only thing anyone would do in a situation like this – summon superheroes from a parallel dimension, where what already happened didn’t really happen. I hope you’re with me so far. Anyway, before you know it, you are engulfed in a war between superheroes and villains.

If you don’t have a problem with slightly confusing, over-the-top tales, then Injustice: Gods Among Us should be right up your street. It’s an attempt to tell a story about 24 major heroes, each from a different world and fighting for a different cause. Things are bound to get confusing at some point. What’s really sort of annoying is that there’s little going on in this game that would make you interested in all of those cool characters individually. It’s all set up in such a way to serve the gameplay and to serve the almost absurd story arch, which involves the death of Lois Lane and a nuclear bomb and, of course, hacking lots and lots of hacking (hacking away… at stuff). But that was expected. I supposed narrative plausibility is too much to ask in games like this. As it turns out, the story is anything but plausible. It’s as baffling as it is ridiculous.

Judging from what we’ve experienced in this game, NetherRealm has learned from the mistakes they made in MK vs. DC Universe. Charging meters are a great addition because they open up a lot of opportunities for various combos, which make fights a lot more dynamic and exciting. Injustice is far more challenging than the aforementioned MK vs. DC Universe and offers a rich single-player mode to say the least. The gameplay itself has evolved a bit more, moving away from the frantic button-mashing to actually using moves that both look cool and are useful in combat. For example, in addition to the standard light, medium and heavy attacks, and the cool Clash system, you can also pull off so-called EX specials that trigger animated segments where your character deals an increased amount of damage to the opponent. As you progress, enemies become harder to beat and every one of them uses different combat techniques, allowing for some pretty intense and interesting matches.

Another cool aspect of this game, apart from the special moves, is the level of interactivity in the environment. These interactive areas unlock more potential damage and usually lead to some pretty awesome-looking combat scenes.

Generally, the game is certainly not short of content or challenges. Next to the Story mode, you also have a chance to try out Battles, STAR Labs and Training. Everyone seems to be yapping on and on about the STAR Labs missions (kind of like the Challenge Tower Mortal Kombat ’11), which denote 240 challenges. Admittedly, we haven’t completed all of these, but it’s commendable that they’ve crammed so many features into one game.

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USER SCORE
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ACTIONTRIP SCORE
8.0   Very Good


HIGHS
Every characters gets his time in the spotlight, overall one of the best fighting games around;

LOWS
The main story is bewildering and sometimes very tedious.

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