Developer: Superbot Entertainment, SCE Santa Monica Studio
Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment America
Platform: PS3, PS Vita
Release Date: Out now
Playstation All-Star Battle Royale is a game that takes some of Playstation’s most recognizable icons from the past eighteen years and brings them together in what is to be biggest mash up of good versus evil. If this formula for a game sounds familiar to you then it should. People have been comparing it to Nintendo’s Super Smash Brothers Brawl as both of these two games may have the same initial concept the similarities end there.
Super Smash Brothers Brawl featured a health meter for each character that you had to deplete in order to defeat them whereas Playstation All-Star Battle Royale introduces a special move meter in place of a health meter. This meter is built up by performing combos on your opponent and will go up in level from 1 to the maximum of 3, each giving a different and more powerful special move that when used to strike the enemy it instantly kills them and awards the player a kill point. If more than one enemy is caught in the attack both will be killed and it will give the player two kill points. The game works by ensuring you use these special moves at strategically important times during the battle to rack up as many kill points as you can. In order to win you must either end with the most kills by the end of the timer, or by being the first to reach the desired number of kill points depending on the match type.
The roster for the game includes classics such as PaRappa(PaRappa the Rapper), Sir Daniel Fortesque (Medievil) and Heihachi Mishima (Tekken) to Nathan Drake (Uncharted) , Kratos (God of War), Big Daddy ( Bioshock), Dante (Devil May Cry) and Raiden (Metal Gear Rising) along with a host of other recognizable characters whom all have a sense of variation in gameplay with the notable exception of Cole MgGrath and Evil Cole, who In my opinion didn’t really need to be included as two separate characters. Some fans will be disappointed at the exclusion of some other Playstation icons such as Crash Bandicoot and Spyro the Dragon but hopefully Sony will take note of this and include them as DLC in the future.
Gameplay wise the game is quite entertaining and the combo system is deep and requires practice to master. The story mode can take half an hour or so per character to complete. Each character has a rival in the storyline, although this isn’t really played out to any great extent except for a short cut-scene just before the actual rival fight.
The stages for each level are very well put together and blend many well-known Playstation backgrounds, characters and areas into them, from Hydras of God of War in the background of a stage to the Chimeran fleet flying over San Fransisco to Buzz’ gameshow. These all give a very humorous yet astounding feeling as you fight your way through each level of the game. Fights can go up to four player combat so online gameplay can be quite the bit of a rough and tumble which is all the more fun.
Downsides to All Star Battle Royale include the fact that story for each character is not really given any depth whatsoever and the little that is given for each character is done so in stills with a bit of voiceover for both the prologue and epilogues of each character which felt a little cheap. The exclusion of some Playstation icons from the game and the fact that Cole from InFamous is included as two separate characters is a strange move by Sony in this case and many fans have complained on this issue. These issues are not that big of a deal but they do somewhat sour the overall experience of this game
Overall : Playstation All-Star Battle Royale is a very enjoyable game with something for all Playstation fans new and old to smile at. There is a lot to unlock including alternate costumes, icons, backgrounds and more to give replay value and online play is quite fun. All-Star Battle Royale is a solid entry and I could see this being made into a series of games.
It is also one of Sony’s first batch of Cross Play games so once you buy it on PS3 it will work on your Vita too which is a huge plus.
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