Well pick your hero and prepare for people crying about Deathstroke because Injustice 2 has been officially announced. This latest NetherRealm title has sparked cries of joy from fans all over the internet after the glowing success of their last game, Mortal Kombat X. So far, all we have to go on is one trailer which you can watch here. Here are my thoughts, feelings and wishes for Injustice 2.
Image from @noobde
Injustice 1 introduced a dynamic environment, in which players could interact with objects around them to give them an advantage in a match. However, some of these design choices brought by interactables gave some characters too much of an advantage over others. The Watchtower stage, for example, gave Player One a respawning interactable which did unblockable damage to the opponent and made it highly difficult to get in. Many power and gadget characters had similar hitboxes to the nimble characters, and made the advantages of playing nimble characters almost non-existent. My point being, as hilarious as the Arkham Asylum pig fights were, the interactable system in Injustice 1 left a lot to be desired and refined. NetherRealm studios, thankfully, have already refined the system wonderfully in Mortal Kombat X, creating a more balanced game for both their casual and competitive audience.
Speaking of similarities to Mortal Kombat X, one thing that caused a stir of excitement and Iron Man jokes among fans were the Gundam-style transformations in the trailer. The dynamic changes of costume and attack style in the trailers leads me to be hopeful that Injustice 2 plans to have a variation system similar to Mortal Kombat X. The variation system not only provides more content in the game per character but also rewards character loyalists in competitive play. The variation system will be a good addition to Injustice, allowing NetherRealm to add more to their game as well as explore these well known and loved characters in more depth.
The story mode, although not the main focus of any fighting game, is sure to entertain -NetherRealm’s Mortal Kombat franchise has a strong lore which many fans follow and adore, but a few of their games in the past have disappointed in terms of story. One improvement however I hope they will implement is not forcing the player to be Batman for the majority of story missions. In my opinion, the story mode should allow the player to experience a wide variety of characters in the roster. Injustice 1’s story was made stale by the Batman repetition. Perhaps we will get a story mode which allows us to play as the villains too. Either way, with a plethora of DC plot lines to choose from, we can be assured of a decent and engaging story.
Finally, my last wish for Injustice 2 is that I hope it will have a thriving competitive crowd. The booming success with the MKX pro league has allowed the game to grow, reward players for their dedication and ability at the game and expand the community exponentially. New players have joined the FGC and, by the time the pro league moved to the PlayStation 4, entrant numbers were reaching hundreds each week from the EU, NA and CIS scenes. With DC fans getting interested and involved I hope that the competitive crowd will grow. NetherRealm’s refinement of their online net code also speaks highly for the future of their games.
All of this is just my speculation but with E3 less than a week away I’m sure we will have our answers soon enough. Either way I’m hopeful that NetherRealm will once again provide a game that appeals to both a casual and competitive audience, enjoyable and balanced.
On a personal note, I’m writing a letter to Ed Boon to ask for more costumes for characters that aren’t Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman. Please Ed, I have been good this year.