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Jacob's DGB 06.2022 Review

Opening

Injustice 2 is a fighting game released May 11, 2017 on PS4, XBONE and PC. It was developed by NetherRealm Studios and published by WB Interactive. It is a sequel to Injustice: Gods Among Us from 2013.


Story

Brainiac has come to take over the world in the midst of the usual injustice tomfoolery and it’s up to the heroes and villains of Earth to prevent each brainiac or each other to win the crazy war of the supers. I’m sure there’s some nerd out there pulling his ears off cuz I butchered the story, but I don’t care, that’s not what I’m here for. I want cool face offs again. Batman vs Superman. Harley Quinn vs Joker. Harley vs. Poison Ivy. But not Harley vs Green Arrow cuz their chemistry in the comics is one of my favorite stories I’ve ever read…


The Story ends with Batman and Superman BOTH fighting Brainiac (meaning you the player have to beat him twice), and then you make the choice of who wins the injustice argument, Batman or Superman.


Visuals

Most of the time the visuals were great. Cutscenes especially were buttery smooth, and it was harder to tell in this game (vs. the original) when the cutscene ended and when the characters were in engine/game. Lasers especially (for some unknown reason) looked sharp, which is fine by me because there were many different colored lasers, so it made for a fun light show. Characters vary from looking great to ok. Sometimes it looked like an action figure where their clothes are a part of the body (like an action figure just has that part of the model painted as clothing). This certainly didn’t take away from the experience, it’s just my biggest visual complaint… which could certainly be worse!


This game felt like it focused a lot more on the story with a lot more cutscenes, so I’m glad they looked great. Normally I get annoyed when I’m watching a movie when I want to be playing a game, but I enjoyed this. The cutscenes didn’t overstay their welcome.



Gameplay

Sooooo here’s the thing. I have a knock off (but officially approved!) XBOX controller for my pc games. I know it’s a knock off because the D pad doesn’t feel the way it should… which is exactly what I blame for me not doing well at this game for a while. I legit couldn’t perform moves requiring flicking left and right quickly (like left right Y for example). Same with the stick, it’s too small and just doesn’t work for me. I need a bigger stick to grab on to, so I did the opposite of our Network’s Creed and bought a fightstick/controller so that I could actually play this game. That's right, this is a mini review inside of a review! After a lot of research, it was pretty obvious that the best quality for a decent price is the Qanba Drone. The only thing I haven’t done that my research suggested is to replace the gate on the actual stick from a 4 direction to an 8-way. Apparently this is important for things like jumping over a character, you need a diagonal input. I love the feel of the drone, it works great, my only complaint is any button press, even when I'm not playing and just testing the softest of inputs, the buttons are SUPER loud… which only intensifies when the fight isn't going well. Other than that, if you have a couple fighting games stacked up in the corner of your room, I would suggest this controller. The one I got is playstation specific, so it's pretty cool that there's still a screenshot button, there's a couple input settings I haven't really checked out yet (something about a turbo mode??). Good investment.


All that said, when I could finally control the game, it ran quite well. NetherRealm is no stranger to fighting games, being the company that has made many of the last Mortal Kombat games. All the usual controls are here. Specials, combos, juggling, everything as expected. The newest addition to the game that I noticed was that quite often a pair of characters would run into the next level, (say Green Arrow and Black Canary), a villain would approach them, and you the player gets to choose which character you want to fight as, while the other deals with another problem explained away in the story. I REALLY like this option that’s provided, because it gives me, a filthy casual, hope of beating the chapter with my play style. If there’s one character I just don’t understand the special moves for or can’t memorize easily, I can choose the other and I have a hope of winning.


Speaking of a hope to win, I noticed that the difficulty would dramatically swing. I’d be playing just fine, then suddenly get absolutely rekt. I’d try again, and do OK… and then the third try I would win with no problem at all. It’s noticeable too, the opponent would use all kinds of special moves and juggle me ceaselessly, and then on the third try they would just stand there and take it. Very weird, I kind of wish it was just a flat difficulty. I found people online complaining about the AI as well, specifically calling out medium, which is what I was playing. Those people blamed the AI reading your inputs too well, sooo.. I dunno.


The supers are back from Injustice 1, meaning if your super bar is full, you can pull both triggers at the same time to trigger an ultimate that is just a cinematic that deals a lot of damage. It is possible (but very difficult) to block it, and there are other things you can use that power bar for, but this is the simp’s way of dealing a quarter of the opponent’s total damage. With that being said, it honestly gets pretty old watching those cinematics. It was quite often I got two per match, which meant watching the same video twice in the same fight. It at least let me check my phone or steal a sip of a drink mid match…


Unfortunately, there’s pretty much only one thing this game is well known for. The loot boxes in this game are certainly something. When I just wanna sit down and listen to a cd or something, just chill, I’ll play a little Overwatch (until I catch cancer and die). Those loot boxes are perfectly fine, because it’s just skins or audio or emotes or something. In this game, you have almost the same amount of playable characters (injustice has 6 more), but all the loot boxes drop armor pieces or paints (to change the character’s outfit colors). Every armor piece has stats and special effects that affect your online play UNLESS you play the game mode that nullifies those stats. So the loot boxes are either really pay to win (to get better gear and thus stats) or entirely pointless. What they should have done is just made a crap ton of skins and paints and let you win (or earn) those. The armor idea is kinda cool, because it barely changes the look of the character (especially their weapons!), but the whole thing is dumb.


Closing

The story is very enjoyable. As someone who has read a large amount of the Injustice comics, I really enjoyed seeing a different story told in the same setting. The multiplayer is mostly dead by now, so you’re pretty much just buying the story and the “Towers” game mode (renamed “Multiverses” in this franchise).


I bought the complete edition for $16. Honestly, it’s too bad the multiplayer is dead, because there are some really cool DLC characters like Hellboy and the TMNT. if you want a solid fighting game story for super cheap, grabbing the base game is a no brainer. If you have the opportunity to play couch co-op, the legendary edition is on sale all the time now, and might be worth the couple extra dollars.


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