Injustice was found in the DC comics booth in the exhibit hall much to my surprise. Injustice is a DC superhero game from the creators of Mortal Kombat. Thus, the combat system is very similar to Mortal Kombat as I discovered with my hands on impressions.
The game like Mortal Kombat is 1 v 1 in a 2D arena where winning a round/match means taking out an opponents life bar. Unlike other games where there is one life bar and several rounds to determine a match, your character has 2 life bars, which both must be taken out in order to win a round. A special note about 2 life bars is that, if you took a hit for half health, but your first life bar only had 1/3 left, you would only lose up to that first life bar, and the rest of the damage that was done is not transferred to the next life bar. This means it can be very important to decide when to use your most powerful attacks as you do not want to waste it when you won’t be doing as much damage.
The options you have in battle are rather simple, with 3 attack buttons (pressing B button on Xbox never seemed to do anything for me). Each of the three attack buttons were not associated to limbs as Mortal Kombat is, in fact I unfortunately could not tell the differences between the three. The combat engine itself is still rather different than Mortal Kombat and I really didn’t have enough time to fully explore the various moves and combos one could perform.
There are a lot of cool environmental interactions however. The Right and Left Triggers being used to trigger these effects. In the Fortress of Solitude level, there were teleporting machines on one side of the arena that could be used every few seconds to teleport from one teleporter to the other to perform a surprise attack. The Bat Cave level had a button that could be pressed that would fire a missile into the middle of the screen that could potential damage your opponent.
Like Mortal Kombat, there is an easy button for your Super attacks. Pressing Left and Right Trigger together will trigger your super attack, which varies from character to character. More on those later.
As for the roster, its growing with more announcements to come. For this demo I was able to choose from Batman, Superman, Nightwing, Harley Quinn, Cyborg, Wonderwoman, Flash, and someone else I cannot quite remember. Each character has access to special moves and won super attack that differentiate themselves from one another. For example Superman has access to flight attacks, dashes, heat vision, frost breath, and a variety of other moves. Batman has many gadgets and quick acrobatic attacks. Harley Quinn has access to long range gun shots and some tricky moves for close range fights.
I played as Harley Quinn in my match and watched several matches with Nightwing, Superman, Batman, Cyborg and Flash.
Harley Quinn’s super was a smash with a hammer, knocking an opponent senseless with it then dashing towards them, feigning a punch but then instead sliding underneath them, and blowing them up with a cake. When I performed that movie most of the spectators laughed as they watched. Like I said earlier, she has access to a lot of long range attacks and some trickier moves. I unfortunately couldn’t pull them off and she is not as easy a character to play as say, Superman and has fewer moves.
Superman’s super has him dashing in towards an opponent, knocking them up into the sky with a mighty uppercut, well not really the sky, more like space. He then smashes them back into the ground, dealing massive damage. Superman’s special attacks and normal moves are very balanced, a mix of close range, dashing attacks, long range heat vision attacks, and quick and slower moves. He was winning most of the games he was in but this is still very early on of course. He looks rather easy to pick up though and has a pretty large amount of moves.
Batman’s super had him doing a variety of kicks and punches onto his opponent as well as using his gadgets to stun them until eventually calling his batmobile, flipping over it as it runs into the opponent and smashes them away. His normal and special attacks are balanced much like Superman. He has access to a grapple gun to snare opponents and kick them away. He can also throw batarangs for long range damage (not sure if they are able to be thrown in the air). He also has access to a lot of acrobatic moves though I can’t remember too many of them. He has a rather large move list in general and seems easy to pick up like Superman.
Cyborg’s super wasn’t quite as interesting as the others, just a simple lazer beam to an opponents face. At least it looked pretty cool. He seems to be a heavy hitter and can still be rather fast. Unfortunately I didn’t catch too many of his moves but has access to a grapple that clings to the environment and can allow you to zip across the arena which allows a lot of mobility surprisingly. He does have access to some beam attacks thanks to the cannon on his arm.
Flash’s super had him punching the opponent several times at light speed before running around the world several times before smashing into an opponent with a powerful punch, then dashing behind them and kicking them one more time towards the ground. His attacks are very fast in general and all focus on getting up close to an opponent. He has no ranged moves but excels on closing the gap between opponents. A special note is that his dash along the ground is the longest and quickest in the game.
Unfortunately I did not see Nightwing’s super but he seemed to be extremely quick, faster than Batman for sure and fought with a staff. I can’t really say too much more about him since I was paying more attention to a monitor that had Flash on it at the time.
I can’t say much more about the other characters, I never got to watch a full match with them unfortunately. I wish I could have gotten more hands on time with it but it was still fun to watch and play nonetheless. I’m definitely keeping a close eye on this game now, because as a fighting game fan, and loving super heroes, who doesn’t want to see DC super heroes duke it out?