Playstation All-Stars: Battle Royale Preview
With Solid Snake sneaking his way into the Super Smash Bros. Brawl cast for the Wii years ago, Playstation fans have since wondered why Sony wouldn’t create a crossover character bash of their own. Luckily for those gamers, the idea is about to come to fruition.
A few months ago Sony had announced the future release of a crossover fighting game called Playstation All-Stars: Battle Royale. In an attempt to capitalize on the same success Nintendo found, Sony is bringing 20 of the most famous Playstation characters together for their own fighting frenzy. Although the idea for PSASBR was inspired by the success Super Smash Bros, there are stark differences creating a whole new experience and style of fighting.
The game is playable by four players on one television or allows individuals toconnect via the internet. The amazing aspect of this game is that it will be cross-platform and thus playable on both the Playstation 3 and the PS Vita. Therefore, gamers on home systems can even connect to others players using portable ones.
Players will battle through 14 different levels that change during the course of gameplay. Some levels include active scenery (spike, sea serpents, etc.) that can possibly inflict damage or even kill you. The game also includes weapons from each of the character’s respective games that randomly spawn on the battlefield throughout the fight. Characters can use these weapons to perform better and inflict massive damage on the enemy, leading to an easier victory.
The game hosts a variety of characters with others sure to come from future downloadable content. PSASBR will deliver intense humanoids like Kratos (God of War), Sweet Tooth (Twisted Metal) and Nathan Drake (Uncharted), while also including diminutive heroes such as Fat Princess, Sackboy (Little Big Planet), and Parrapa the Rapper. It has been a long time now that people have asked for a game like this, even longer for some of its characters to achieve video game resurrection. Sony clearly didn’t take the project lightly and listened to the input of many fans to arrive at some decisions.
In an event with Giant Bomb, designer Seth Killian commented on the games nostalgia factors saying stating that developers made, “. . . explicit effort to not just make it about PS3 or even about PS2 [and] definitely goes back to PS1 as well.”
Super Smash Bros. Brawl showed how similar a character can be across different play styles; however none emulate their original controls perfectly. The most amazing thing related to the PSASBR characters is the ability to control them similar to the way you would in their respective titles. Of course some games just can’t cross over smoothly to this fighting style, but luckily the overall basic structure of any characters signature moves stay intact.
With a basic attack, a heavy attack, a grab and a jump, this game has relatively simple controls that allow players to learn to play any of the characters they choose. Using the basic fighting style will eventually build up a players special bar. Players can build up multiple bars of special either using the first level they achieve or stockpiling it all for one final attack. Special attacks tend to be the deciding factor in most arcade style fights, although this time for a different reason.
One drastic difference that PSASBR holds from any comparable game is the lack of a health bar. Don’t worry, the matches are still decided by a player’s ability to beat on another. This game presents a unique way for fair competition. Each attack that lands on an opponent increases a character’s special bar. The more special bar you have acquired and used by the matches end, the more points you will get toward victory. If you can beat the life out of your opponent using special moves, you will probably record enough points to beat them.
This game has a very interesting way to rewards players. It allows new players to experiment and play throughout the whole fight with others, rather than games that give you limited life. This also ensures that the person landing the most damaging attacks (a.k.a. the person who should win in any physical fight) will win. PSASBR encourages nonstop action, which is very appealing to people who avoid fighters because of pro players “tactical play”. This game doesn’t allow for passive fighting, as players need to get in there and compete if they want to be victorious.
Don’t spend all your time focusing on a super special attack though. Each bar is equally hard to fill and doing it multiple times may be tasking in the limited window a match presents. Opponents can also interrupt your special with their own attacks, so don’t expect landing a big one to come easy. Don’t expect to keep any of that hard earned special bar either, as it will drain if being interrupted while performing the attack.
No character has the same making every special attack unique. Some are designed to blow away a single opponent while others can hit multiple enemies or cause frustration even at lower levels. All fighting games have characters that are easier to use than others sometimes due to simple things like lack of speed or not having ranged attacks against opponents who do. If you would like a full list of the characters please check the MMOattack forums or the games official website.
Playstation All-Stars: Battle Royale is set to release November 20th in the US; although the closed-beta to the game has been pushed back multiple times, so who knows? Hopefully all will go according to plan and the game will come through on the many experiences it promises to provide. All I know is that as a fan of the Super Smash Bros. Brawl fight style and crossover games in general, the end of November will surely be spent mostly on my living room couch.