How far can the classic fighting game genre go in today’s standards where many video games are being developed with great changes to traditional gameplay mechanics?
Long story short, freaking far.
Injustice 2 is by far the best fighting game I have played filled to the brim with the most single player content I have ever seen for a fighting game. It innovates the classic genre to new heights where not even boredom could pierce through my multitudes of replays trying to get a win against a highly difficult AI.
The mechanics in the combat system feels very much improved when compared to the first Injustice game. The fluidity of the fights and the emphasis of timing your punches and kicks seems far ahead in comparison to other fighting games. The AI also feels really difficult and at times feels unfair but the challenge was so entertaining. I couldn’t help but keep on fighting the same enemy just for the satisfaction of finally beating a tough opponent despite the number of minutes I wasted. The clash system also seems to be more prominent and useful than I remember in the first game. Even a slight regen can be a big game-changer rather than going for the ultimate skills.
The game is mostly known for its story and it was amazing. It picks up directly from when the first game left off but with the arrival of a powerful antagonist where you’ll have no choice but to set aside your differences. They added a new mechanic where if you went with two heroes you can pick which one fights the enemy. It’s a multiple choice that gives you a sense of strategy where you can play to your strengths or learn a new rotation depending on which hero you pick. This is also the first fighting game I played that has multiple endings and the good ending was solid but this was the game in general where I felt that the bad ending was the better choice. The bad ending has so much narrative value for a sequel where I can’t help but imagine what direction the series would take should it choose to continue on that path.
The animation was on an entirely different level where the details really shine and was on point with the atmosphere of the situation. It was also a very nice touch when each character meets another and has a personal exchange prior to fighting each other even if those characters are from another series but still part of the same world. There were still minor gripes I had where during the story mode, there were times when characters get stabbed or killed that there isn’t even a hint of blood. Even if it wasn’t red, it would’ve been nice to see that little detail added on unless the game’s rating was rated G. Another thing that was and is still bothering me that has been in the game since Injustice: Gods Among Us; is the fact that when the character loses the battle, they still have enough energy to stand up before going down on their knees or backs and feeling the shame of defeat. It feels unnatural in every way but at least the animation is faster compared to the 1st game which alleviates my annoyance a tiny bit.
The game also now has loots which gives the characters cool looking aesthetics and stat upgrades which can help during your fights or just make you look cooler. I mean who doesn’t want their favorite superhero or villain doing a minor cosplay of themselves. A good thing to note is that the stat changes don’t carry over to online competitive play which makes perfect sense and there is an option to turn it off during versus mode.
A great addition to the game is the multiverse feature. It is where the loot system makes the most sense and creates unique stories outside of the story mode if you have enough imagination to fuel it. NetherRealm Studios thought of nearly everything and gave us players the option to go through the multiverse on autopilot. You’ll find that your AI character will be faster at farming gear and beating up everyone than you yourself. This was really useful when I had to do some work that I brought home and I just put the game on autopilot to save myself a lot of time. Do take note that multiverses are only available for a certain amount of days but the game creates new ones to replace them. There is also a permanent endless mode in the multiverse. The multiverse bosses are also really tough which is where the strongest gears shine since they are your best bet at denting their tough armor and buffs.
The game also included guilds which require an online connection and it is where you and your guildmates do daily tasks to get some exclusive gear which you can all share. Now I feel that it wasn’t exactly necessary but it is a very nice and welcome addition to an already great game.
Review – Injustice 2 (PS4)”
My last gripe in the game would have to be the roster selection. While some heroes were amazing additions like Blue Beetle, Supergirl, or the always interesting Doctor Fate some of them felt lackluster like Gorilla Grodd, Black Canary, and Captain Cold. The game even had an unnecessary character when they brought back Joker, it would’ve made more sense if he was a DLC due to the nature of the story. There were some cool additions like Swamp Thing and one of them made me feel like the character was greatly improved compared to how I usually see him in both aesthetics and in combat potential, it was Scarecrow.
Overall, Injustice 2 improves in nearly every aspect of its predecessor and is packed with so many things to do offline that it would probably take awhile for you to have an itch to go online. It has a very memorable story and it takes real skill to get the hang of this game. This game is enough to satisfy my fighting game needs for the rest of the year and it should probably be the same for almost everyone else.
Played on a PS4 Pro.
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