Injustice Is In The Right Hands
The fighter genre has been home to some truly classic franchises. The likes of Street Fighter, Tekken and King of Fighters have hosted a number of fantastic video experiences that have formed fond memories for anyone who played them with a buddy. For all their quality gameplay, it’s fair to say that story telling has never been a focus, or a strong point, of the genre.
The reboot of the Mortal Kombat franchise had plenty of qualities. It’s gameplay was smooth and flowed perfectly. It’s roster of fighters was top notch, as were all the game modes and mini games on offer. The one thing no one expected to be great was the story mode, but Mortal Kombat proved fighters can do story telling just as well as they can do hitting people in the face.
Mortal Kombat’s story was well written, well paced and most importantly, it was interesting. The ability to take familiar characters in a familiar universe and put them into a new story is a true challenge. NetherRealm managed to overcome the challenge without cutting any corners. The cinematic narrative was on par with a number of 2011′s biggest games, much to everyone’s surprise. NetherRealm had marked the end of traditional ladder based progression in favor of plot progression.
The plot itself was a decent jaunt through the Mortal Kombat universe, acting as a retelling of the events from the first two games. The characters were well written and stayed true to their established characteristics. The story mode was surprisingly long but it never once outstayed it’s welcome. The key to the success of the story was it’s ability to give legitimate reasons for each fight and the characters involved in each battle. At no point was there a situation in which the player would sit back and ask ”Well why are these two fighting?”.
NetherRealm’s latest project sees them depart from the Mortal Kombat universe for a arguably bigger one, the DC comics universe. Injustice: Gods Among Us marks a new challenge for NetherRealm to overcome. They’ve proved they can craft a fantastic story, and game, inside of their own universe but can they do the same with someone else’s? Injustice also marks a risk being taken by NetherRealm, after all comic book fans are particularly vocal when it comes to their beloved universes being meddled with. The concept of seeing Batman square up to Superman will be enough to interest people, but this would be a disservice to the story that Injustice: Gods Among Us seemingly has to offer.
The plot sees Metropolis fall victim to a nuclear attack masterminded by The Joker. With Metropolis in ruins and Lois Lane presumed dead Superman is out for revenge. Batman attempts stop Superman from exacting his revenge by appealing to Superman’s famed good side, but things don’t quite go as planned. This puts Superman and the rest of the Justice League at ends with each and thus begins the cross over carnage of Injustice.
The plot has plenty of potential, and in the care of NetherRealm (along with a number of DC comic writers) it’s hard to see Injustice failing to deliver on the story front. Some eyebrows have been raised over how Batman could truly stand toe-to-toe with Superman but lead designer John Edwards has claimed that the plot will explain how the Dark Knight and the Man Of Steel will match up equally.
NetherRealm will be pouring their efforts into putting as much depth into Injustice’s game modes and content, just like they did with Mortal Kombat. A large range of modes have already been confirmed for Injustice such as a 240 character-specific challenges and a host of online options. The large roster, featuring a number of fan favorites, along with recognizable environments and mind blowing special moves validates the hype surrounding Injustice. It’s a project that could fail in the hands of a lesser studio, but in the hands of NetherRealm, Injustice: Gods Among Us is set to be something great.