Tuesday 12 June 2012

Sony's MvC and Smash Brothers for PS3 and PSV

Have you heard about Playstations All-Star Battle Royale coming to the PSV? It's Sony's MvC and Smash Brothers. Playable characters include Kratos from God of War, Sly Cooper, Big Daddy from Bioshock, Sweet Tooth from Twisted Metal, Nathan Drake of Uncharted, PaRappa of PaRappa the Rapper, Fat Princess, Mael Radec of Killzone. Each fighting stage has two backgrounds, one from a different game. Revealed background stages so far are outside Green Sages house from Jak and Daxter, Ratchet and Clank area around a statue of Captain Qwark, and the boat that is currently next to Hyrda in God of War, an area of LittleBigPlanet, Buzz!, Hot Shots Golf and Patapon. Characters have unigue moves that they bring over from their own games, and probably some new moves that would match them.

At E3 2012 Sony demonstrated Cross-Play for the first time with this game. Cross-Play allows players to play the same games from the PS3 with players on the Playstation Vita. The PSV can be used as a controller or portable PS3 for supported Games. A commercial for the Vita claims being able to continue playing some PS3 games on your Vita on the go.  This was rumored and probably tried on the original PSP with the PS2 but failed due to the limits of the Playstation Portable not being able to match up to the Playstation 2. The PSV clearly has HD capabilities which would allow it to finally pull of the feat. It is unclear however whether or not the handheld will need it's own copy of the game to play, although that is very likely.

Both the title and gameplay isn't that creative. It is an all-star lineup, but so is Smash Brothers and Marvel Vs. Capcom. The concept of bringing together characters has been done before, but not by Sony except for a secret unlocked character here and there. Nintendo has had Super Smash Brothers(Nintendo 64), Smash Brothers Melee(GameCube), and Smash Brothers Brawl(Wii) so they have improved their mechanics(although new characters like Sonic and Icarus were obviously stronger than the balanced characters). To some degree, lots of the Mario games already contain all stars. I wonder which group of all-stars has generated a greater total sum of money from their individual games.

Another reason why this might not feel so WOW to me is because Marvel Vs. Capcom 3 came out not too long ago. Both Dante of Devil May Cry and Amaterasu of Okami (both born on the Sony Playstation 2 console) had already made their mash up appearances. However, they are more than welcomed to join this roster here too as their games easily fit into my top favorite games due to originality, story, character, jokes, awesome graphics and more but that is for another time. Characters from Crash Bandicoot, Spyro, Kingdom Hearts, Final Fantasy, Jak and Daxter, Sackboy, and Metal Gear Solid would be nice and appreciated as well(if done correctly). I admit I don't know the licensing procedures and ownerships at all but those characters are affiliated with Sony.

Another example of why Sony is late on this one and uncreative with it's title is Shonen Jumps "Jump Super Star" (2005) and it's sequel "Jump Ultimate Stars" (2006) for the Nintendo DS. Although these were only released in Japan, because of licenses to other companies in outside countries, they had an awesome cast of characters, especially for Anime and Manga fans. Characters I recognized were from the shows DragonBallZ, Shaman King, One Piece, Yugioh, YuYu Hakusho, Fist of the North Star, The Prince of Tennis, and Deathnote. Graphics were only 2D but the NDS games still had a great mix of heroes.

It doesn't take long to recognize that Playstation's All-Star game is highly inspired by and based on Nintendo's Super Smash Bros. Franchise. I don't blame them because the Franchise is really well done, fun, and action packed. One who has played those games cannot help but notice the resemblances here. The location of each players icon and health, the colors of P1,P2,P3,P4 on top of a players character, the requirement to damage enemies and blast them off the stage, the smashing that takes place between four characters from different worlds on a stage that is changing. One thing however that Sony's All Star game doesn't take or copy is how players are knocked off the stage. A special or super must be used in order to deliver the finishing blow. A meter or bar must be charged. There's three levels of specials, once a special is activated, the player has a limited time to execute the move. I'm not too sure about how fun this final requirement will be. It could possibly slow games down from being knocked out any second and turned into a race of charging up a super special. That method Reminds me of Naruto Ultimate Ninja, although those games don't require a super move to kill.

Although not super original, the game still looks interesting with a different taste. That crazy clown sure does add a flavor to the game. There are no release dates yet for Playstation All-Star Battle Royale yet. Sorry.


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