Injustice 2 PlayStation 4 Review

NetherRealm probably stumbled a bit implementing the newly introduced gear management feature, but everything else in Injustice 2 is flawless.

By RON, Posted 21 May 2017

For the fighting game genre, the release of Street Fighter II, back in 1991, is sometimes considered revolutionary. Friendly controls with highly detailed characters and stages seemed like a heavenly mix, especially noting the perfect implementation of the game’s combo mechanics. Within a year, in 1992, Mortal Kombat was released and fighting games had never felt better. Since then it’s always been a journey of amazing fighting games releasing successively. Virtua Fighter, The King of Fighters, Tekken, Dead or Alive and many more series continued to keep the fans of this genre busy for decades. While it was hard to crown any of these series, since each of them has their pros and cons, Injustice: Gods Among Us showed up in 2013, NoobFeed’s Chief Editor Daav Valentaten being quoted in his review saying it was “Beyond any fighting game of its time”. A clear sign of a proper contender, if anything.

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With the release of Injustice 2, NetherRealm Studios have taken this series a step further, bringing the best possible experience any fighting game can ever provide. Its gameplay is now superior, character portrayal is solid, and the story is thoughtful. These improvements were pretty much expected in any sequel, but what stands out most is the addition of a RPG-like gear system that adds tons of replayability, while also allowing players to craft their own characters, be they hero or a villain, allowing growing them through gameplay. There are some hiccups with this new feature but nothing to hold the title back.

The story of Injustice 2 kicks off five years after Gods Among Us, with the world still recovering from the devastating war between the heroes and their opponents. With the help of Flash and Green Lantern, Batman tries to restore civilization to its usual state. Superman, defeated in the previous game, stays imprisoned in a special Red Sun Prison. Wonder Woman, joined by Black Adam, plot to free Superman with the help of another superhero; Kara Zor-El, also known as Supergirl. For any fighting game nowadays its story is a significant feature, and Injustice 2 makes an example of it. Laid out through a few hours’ worth of campaign with impressive cutscenes, the story of Injustice 2 is told in the most impressive manner. The introduction of Supergirl, brings out Brainiac, who pretty much destroy planets in the process of collecting cities, which is what he does for fun. His entry makes things take a turn for the worse, as he aims to complete his Kryptonian collection. Even though the conflict among supers is still at large, Brainiac’s arrival unites them temporarily. As a player, you fight through this conflict while being introduced to the large roster of characters.

Injustice 2,PlayStation 4,Review,Screenshots,Gameplay,Multiverse,Superhero,Tricks

Injustice 2 brings out most of the familiar faces, and also introduces new characters like Gorilla Grodd, Swamp Thing, Red Lantern, Atrocitus and few other DC characters from Teen Titans. There are around thirty characters to try out, all with a wide range of super powers and fighting styles. Speaking of fighting, mechanically it works in a very balanced manner, just like its previous version. In every stage, uses of hand to hand combat, weapons or powers and environmental tools are well constructed. It’s hard to master all the special moves of every major character during the story mode. Given time, special moves and combos become easy to learn, yet not so easy to time when the fight gets tighter. Then again, for any fighting game, it’s only a matter of practicing more in solo or tutorial modes.

A good thing for the Injustice series is that it plays great with the pad, and those who are playing it for the first time won’t take long to get used to it. There are three major types of attacks, Basic, Combo and Special Moves. Special Moves also come in very handy to halt an incoming combo from the opponent by activating the Clash system. During a Clash, players bet a portion of their super meter hoping to regain health or deal damage. I must say that the cinematic flavored heavy-duty combos are totally awesome, and each character has unique ways of performing them. Other than their Special Moves, each character has their unique set of super powers, allowing them to perform attacks which are hard to avoid. For instance Robin’s slide with his sword is pretty much unavoidable, while Batman’s grapple gun can unavoidably bring anyone down from height. In the same manner, Harley Quinn’s hyenas will surely bite through their opponents when released. I personally rely on super powers when I’m low on health, or against lesser opponents such as Superman vs. Harley Quinn. Players remain exposed to attacks during their Super Power, so it’s best not to get too used to it.

The Special Moves are still the most impressive feature during any fight. What makes best sense is that Injustice 2 allows players to decide whether to press the meter burn button after the Special Move is activated. Meter burns initiate a big combo, and perform a series of heavy attacks in a brutal manner. The meter burn button is also useful for quick escapes during a fight. There are four meter burns, and players can burn two to carry out an air escape when juggled. Your superhero takes most of the beating when juggled and ends up losing a big chunk of health. During any tight battles, this feature is incredibly useful to avoid big loss of health. One meter burn can also be used to block escape.

Injustice 2,PlayStation 4,Review,Screenshots,Gameplay,Multiverse,Superhero,Tricks

Injustice 2 offers a basic tutorial for almost every mechanic and attack of each character. For further enhancement, the game offers plenty of learning opportunities in the Multiverse. The Multiverse is the feature for players who prefer playing in single-player mode after finishing the story. It’s a series of challenges that vary in difficulty and often add unusual modifiers into the mix. These include the battle stage tilting right to left and otherwise, or electric ground that slowly drains life from players. Challenges are regularly being updated and always keep things fresh for players.  If not playing Multiverse for fun, then surely better loot might draw you to it. In addition to one time performance rewards, most events also grant completion rewards. These are unique per event and are randomly refreshed upon completing each event. Players can earn new completion rewards by completing events multiple times. Incase players don’t want to go online and play against other players, AI battles is yet another feature for players who wants the taste of online competition. The features says it all. Players don’t have to go through the burden of training a character, and yet win free items boxes only by creating a team of three superheroes. These battles are conducted in offline mode. After creating your team, simply log into the game every day, and checked the AI Battle Log, and you’ll see someone actually battled your team and probably won. Participation gets you a loot box.

The Multiverse quickly became my favorite place in the game for collecting gear and experience points. Each character is equipped with five gear slots: head, torso, arms, legs and special. Obviously, the special slot is different for everyone. Being able to change the appearance of the DC characters is something fans definitely enjoy. Sadly however, these customizations aren’t without issue because of how they are earned. The items that you receive are totally random and you obtain different gear for the different characters you play as by completing challenges and regular fights. Players do have a choice of spending real money by purchasing Source Crystals, allowing them to purchase cosmetic features for your fighters such as skins or color shades for costumes. But this doesn’t really cover up the lack of choice in the gear drops. Initially, in Multiverse, gear is distributed mostly based on the character you’re playing, and eventually items for other characters. The longer you play, the harder it starts to become to find the gear you’re looking for. This happens because there are challenges where you play with different characters, not with the one you started and gear and items are given based on the characters you’re playing with. Say you’re trying to gear up Wonder Woman, and the challenges you mostly have are for Robin or Catwoman. Outside of the Multiverse, gear drops are entirely random, not taking into account the character you play as.

Injustice 2,PlayStation 4,Review,Screenshots,Gameplay,Multiverse,Superhero,Tricks

Presentation-wise Injustice 2 shows a significant step up from its predecessor. DC characters had never looked this good before. Each character details are noticeable and remarkably realistic. Their facial expressions, eye movement and body gestures feel just right. Adding to that, each character’s victory stance is fitting to them, though some, if not most, are a bit too show off. Batman throwing a few batarangs after winning a battle sure is. Cutscenes are choreographed is the finest manner, and they are as good as any animation movie. Voiceover by George Newbern (Superman), Laura Bailey (Supergirl), Scott Porter (Robin), Grey DeLisle (Catwoman), Tara Strong (Harley Quinn) and legendary Batman voice by Kevin Conroy are as impressive as always. When off the fighting stage Injustice 2 looks and feels like a superb DC movie.

NetherRealm probably stumbled a bit implementing the newly introduced gear management feature, but everything else in Injustice 2 is flawless. It’s hard not to call Injustice 2 a benchmark of this genre, and a masterpiece that truly delivers good quality entertainment. Its impressive story mode, local and online matches through AI battles and Multiverse all combine to make a great package with remarkable presentation. Injustice 2 is the game I anticipated most in 2017, and the wait was totally worth it. All these, alongside its superior gameplay, solid portrayal and thoughtful story make Injustice 2 the best fighting game out there. If fighting games pump the blood in your veins up, you’ll want to play Injustice 2.

Sarwar Ron, NoobFeed
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General Information

Injustice 2


Platform(s): PS4
Publisher(s): Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
Developer(s): NetherRealm Studios
Genres: Fighting
Themes: Competition
Release Date: 2017-05-16

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