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PlayStation All-Stars IGN Review


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Initial post: Nov 20, 2012 8:13:29 AM PST
THE VERDICT

PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale isn't perfect, and it clearly owes its existence to something very special that came before it. But it's also special in its own right. PlayStation fans have long had to deal with unfair comparisons to Smash Bros. while eagerly awaiting this game, but the wait is over, and now you can see for yourself that the two games are as different as Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat.

PlayStation has a proud, nearly two-decade-long legacy, and All-Stars celebrates it. It combines characters, environments and ideas into a tight package that's worthy of consideration for anyone who owns a PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita and considers themselves a brand loyalist or simply a longtime fan. The fact that the experience is identical on both platforms, that you'll receive both versions for the price of one, and that progress can be shared between PS3 and Vita to make one ubiquitous ecosystem is hopefully a sign of what's to come with PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita and beyond (even if the game is certainly more at home on PS3).

I know it'll be hard for some skeptics to believe, but PlayStation All-Stars is its own game, and it even happens to do some things better than what inspired it. Give it a try and see for yourself.

8.0 GREAT

----------------------

Anyone else picking it up today?

Posted on Nov 20, 2012 8:15:13 AM PST
Thinking about trading in some old games to pick this one up.

Posted on Nov 20, 2012 8:16:27 AM PST
FOGE says:
Had it preordered for a long time. Itll be waiting for me when I get home Saturday.

Posted on Nov 20, 2012 8:18:35 AM PST
jtshiel says:
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Posted on Nov 20, 2012 8:18:54 AM PST
John McClane says:
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Posted on Nov 20, 2012 8:19:56 AM PST
Haters gonna hate

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 20, 2012 8:21:40 AM PST
I was going to pick it up but then I realized the release date was right there with the Wii-U so I went with that instead. However I'll definitely be picking this up in the near future and I'm really glad to hear it turned out well. Had a blast with the Beta and definitely snagging the PS3 copy so I can play on the PS3 and Vita. Also awesome that your progress transfers over easily! I was a little worried about that but glad that won't be an issue.

Also a little bummed out by the cut scenes since Super Bot spent awhile talking up the single player campaigns and how good those stories were supposed to be. A minor complaint sure but I was hoping to see some pretty epic fights play out and then letting me jump into the mix to finish the fight.

Oh I got to play as the Big Daddy at Gamestop the other day and did not like his play style at all. Definitely sticking to the faster characters who can chain combos with ease.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 20, 2012 8:22:31 AM PST
MrFoxhound says:
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Posted on Nov 20, 2012 8:23:44 AM PST
That's not a review of the game, it's a PlayStation endorsement. You couldn't read that 'review' and tell anything about the game except that it's borrowing from an earlier game.

Posted on Nov 20, 2012 8:23:55 AM PST
M. McFly says:
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Posted on Nov 20, 2012 8:24:42 AM PST
J. Pardee says:
I can't wait to get my copy!

Posted on Nov 20, 2012 8:25:02 AM PST
uncledonnie3 says:
That's the final few paragraphs of the review, not the entire thing.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 20, 2012 8:25:38 AM PST
MrFoxhound says:
It's so funny when you read a review:

"The lighting sucks. The controls are bad. There are noticeable graphical issues at play here. There are some gameplay issues as well.

8.0"

What?! They do that crap all the time. Reviews read like a train wreck and then it comes out on the other side with a high score.

Posted on Nov 20, 2012 8:25:50 AM PST
Sounds dumb.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 20, 2012 8:27:11 AM PST
Not all games receive scores equivalent to your mental age.

Posted on Nov 20, 2012 8:27:29 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 20, 2012 8:27:41 AM PST
uncledonnie3 says:
I can't view it at work but my guess is the review was either written by Colin Moriarty or Greg Miller who are both blindly devoted Sony ballwashers.

Posted on Nov 20, 2012 8:29:36 AM PST
PlayStation All-Stars isn't Smash Bros. I know that that's been the popular line since All-Stars was officially revealed, but anyone who's spent considerable time with both games - and I have - will identify almost instantaneously the deep-seated fallacy in that line of thinking. Indeed, while PlayStation All-Stars is clearly inspired by what Nintendo has done with its famous brawler, the comparisons end on the periphery. Smash Bros. is its own thing, its own unique take on heavily competitive, fun and accessible multiplayer madness. It totes a well-earned legacy because it's a phenomenal series.

PlayStation All-Stars, on the other hand, is a bona fide fighting game, and its maiden foray on both PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita attempts to carve out its own, more technical niche. The game's developer, SuperBot Entertainment, was specifically created to make this game, and the team - with some help from Sony Santa Monica -- succeeded in making a fun mash-up catered to the legions of PlayStation fans out there. It may, however, struggle to find an audience outside of the PlayStation core, not because it's a bad game - it's quite the opposite - but because making believers out of skeptics will first require them to play it.

At the center of the PlayStation All-Stars experience rests its core of 20 playable characters (with more on the way as DLC). These characters run the gamut from the super-popular (Nathan Drake, Kratos) to the up and coming (Sackboy, Cole MacGrath) to the outright obscure (Toro, Fat Princess). There are even awesome nods to dormant Sony-owned franchises (Sir Dan, Nariko) and some third party love as well (Big Daddy, Dante). It's a well-rounded cast, and while there are some obvious exclusions that frustrate fans of the brand, there's something here for anyone who loves PlayStation.

Due mostly to the pedigree of some of the development veterans on SuperBot's staff, PlayStation All-Stars plays more like a fighting game than you may expect, and is more complicated, nuanced and technical than Smash Bros. With the exception of Good Cole MacGrath and Evil Cole MacGrath, no two characters play alike to the point where they're considered outright palate swaps. All-Stars comes packing considerable depth, one of the major things that helps it stand out. This makes running through its roster fun, with differences between characters shining through. One of the best parts about All-Stars, especially early on, is settling on your character of choice through copious experimentation.

Like its roster of characters, All-Stars' stages take a page from PlayStation's storied history. The game's 14 standard levels are all mash-ups, taking influences from two entirely separate franchises to create something random and unique. Expect to find something completely out of left field (the Franzea stage borrows from Loco Roco and Metal Gear) or something truly strange (like Invasion, which mixes up Killzone and Ape Escape). And there are different kinds of stage types, too. Alden's Tower, which combines Infamous and Sly Cooper, is a scrolling level, while Sandover Village, throwing together Jak & Daxter with Hot Shots Golf, is a small, tight stage that forces confrontation. The combinations are strange and outright bizarre. Yet, they also work nicely and call on some franchises - like Resistance, for instance - that were ignored when crafting the character roster.

Each level is interactive and disruptive during battle, a welcome diversion that freshens up gameplay and forces you to pay attention to more than just your adversaries. For instance, on the Hades level, which crosses God of War with Patapon, the keeper of the underworld can be seen in the back, occasionally smashing the level, eliciting AP loss and temporary paralysis to anyone he strikes. When the Patapon show up later, Hades will become distracted by them, but it won't stop them from launching arrows on the stage, which must be dodged. Each level in the game has similar features revolving around the series that inspired it, but worry not, because if you want to shut off this interactivity to fight your foes straight-up, you can. Then again, I'd recommend sticking with stage interactivity, as it makes fights more grueling.

In battle, All-Stars lacks a conventional health meter, instead relying on AP (All-Stars Points) that give players the chance to execute killing strikes called super attacks. This design decision is the game's unexpected trump card, the true differentiator between it and other brawlers. The more you play the game, the more obvious it becomes that this was a daring design decision that was smartly made. Supers are split into three tiers, and building up your meter requires you to lay the beatdown on your enemies. All-Stars hinges entirely around effectively building up your own meter to build up your kills while doing everything in your power to dodge your foes' killing blows. It takes some getting used to, but ultimately, the system works. It's rewarding, different and, most importantly, enjoyable.

Keeping an eye on other players' meters to try to identify when and how they'll unleash their supers is incredibly tactical. Interrupting their supers or dodging them outright becomes integral to high level play. Dodge rolling, blocking and evading are just as important as going in for meter-building strikes, even in a game that lacks health. If you choose to dedicate yourself to learning All-Stars' ins and outs, playing the game becomes an art, one that varies heavily depending on if you're involved in a four player free for all, a two on two match, or - my favorite - a one-on-one match with a three kill limit.

Character attacks are mapped to the square, triangle and circle buttons. When combined with analog stick movement, character movesets begin to become truly complicated, giving players a smorgasbord of choice. Such options mean that there isn't only one way to play a character. Colonel Radec, for instance, can be played at a distance, up close, or with a combination of the two, and any style is viable. Nathan Drake's firearms are great from afar, but pummeling opponents with melee attacks may be preferable. Either style works. Differentiating characters further are their special abilities, such as Sly's invisibility or Toro's access to three distinct setups. Like any true fighting game, All-Stars gives players more choices than any one person will know what to do with.

Such complexities play out wonderfully in PlayStation All-Stars, giving gamers something vibrant and deep. All-Stars appears as a pick-up-and-play game, but that's only a razor thin façade. Newcomers can have fun with the game, but it'll take time, patience and practice to truly become competent at it, especially when facing off against high caliber opponents. Depending on who you play, how you play, and in what mode you play, All-Stars varies greatly. As a result, its lack of health meters ironically made it a more complex and tactical game than what came before it and has compounded its depth. Like in any fighting game, there are some balancing issues to deal with - Kratos generally seems too strong, and Ratchet's level one super attack is absurdly powerful, for instance - but SuperBot intends on fixing things on the fly as they learn how players play the game, and hopefully, these issues (and others) will be attended to in short order.

All-Stars is split into a series of modes that accommodate single-player purists but decidedly slant towards those who want to play multiplayer locally or online. There are tutorials, trials and more to keep you busy, but its single-player arcade mode is the meat of the solo experience. It allows gamers to run through a mildly story-driven campaign with each character, culminating in a rivalry-based battle before pitting you against the game's final boss. The rivalries themselves explore interesting (but shallow) story angles, some more obvious than others. It's easy to understand why Jak & Daxter and Ratchet & Clank might have an issue with each other, for instance, but you might have to delve a little deeper to make sense of Sackboy's and Big Daddy's quarrel.

Unfortunately, while playing against the computer in solo mode proves fun, the experience can also become redundant and predictable. I was disappointed during my first play through to see the story told through static images coupled with voiceovers for both a character's intro and ending, accompanied by a limited, animated take on the rivalry battle itself. This is the same for each character. All-Stars could have used more love in its single-player presentation, even if the campaigns, tutorials and trials act as excellent proving grounds before jumping into multiplayer (and even if there are a flood of unlockables, from icons to cheerleader-like minions and everything in between, to earn). If SuperBot makes a sequel, this is the greatest problem in the game worthy of being fixed.

On the other hand, the multiplayer suite really shines in PlayStation All-Stars. The game is truly a blast when played with friends. Gamers will be given the option to play with up to four players locally or online, mixing and matching PS3 and Vita gamers in just about any permutation you could imagine. Have two players on your PlayStation 3 and want to match up with Vita players online? You can do that. Have three friends over, but only three DualShock controllers and a Vita? All four of you can still play in the same match, sitting in the same room. All-Stars will accommodate you with online or local play in just about any situation, and SuperBot should be applauded for making such a daunting online process spring into existence, especially because, with solid connections, the game works great online using either platform.

Whether playing locally or online, you'll have a plethora of options to customize your experience. You can play with teams, or in a free for all. You can have a point system (with 2 points per kill and minus one point per death) or go with a kill or stock system. You can have a bunch of items turned on, such as Resistance's Hedgehog Grenade, which stops you from using supers for a short time, or Hermes' Boots from God of War, which give you extra speed, or you can turn them off. You can mess with the clock, you can turn off any given level's interactivity, and more. In All-Stars, it's all about making the experience your own.

I especially enjoyed All-Stars' take on online play in terms of its tournament setup, which puts players through roving seasons, where statistics are kept only for a short time before they're reset. This lets everyone start on the same playing field and keeps competition perpetual and fair. The online user interface is a bit convoluted - it wasn't immediately clear how to play two-on-two online or play coveted one-on-one, either - but with trial and error, things are simple enough to figure out. And if you want to play online but don't want to get crazy competitive, you can always stick to unranked matches.

Source: http://www.ign.com/articles/2012/11/20/playstation-all-stars-battle-royale-review

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Here's the actual review for those of you too dense to realize that was just the final little bit of the review.

As someone who has been playing Smash Bros. since it first released on the Nintendo 64 and is a massive fan of the series this isn't a rip off by any means. Yes it takes inspiration from the Smash Bros. series and then promptly heads off in its own direction bringing a new combat system and everything with it.

Posted on Nov 20, 2012 8:32:37 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 20, 2012 8:39:23 AM PST
MrFoxhound says:
Changing little things doesn't make this game a completely original take on mascot brawling. It's still a Smash Bros. ripoff.

The environmental effects are taken from Smash Bros.

"In battle, All-Stars lacks a conventional health meter, instead relying on AP (All-Stars Points) that give players the chance to execute killing strikes called super attacks. This design decision is the game's unexpected trump card, the true differentiator between it and other brawlers. The more you play the game, the more obvious it becomes that this was a daring design decision that was smartly made. Supers are split into three tiers, and building up your meter requires you to lay the beatdown on your enemies. All-Stars hinges entirely around effectively building up your own meter to build up your kills while doing everything in your power to dodge your foes' killing blows. It takes some getting used to, but ultimately, the system works. It's rewarding, different and, most importantly, enjoyable."

This is the same as Smash Bros. If you do a smash attack when your enemy is at 0% it's not going to kill them. So you build up the same way. Instead of earning AP, you're raising their % into the red to ultimately have an effective smash attack that will kill the enemy.

The controls are ripped right out of Smash Bros too with dedicated attack buttons and directions + attack buttons creating new and different attacks.

I don't see how they are saying this is so vastly different. I'm guessing this reviewer never played Smash Bros.

Posted on Nov 20, 2012 8:34:00 AM PST
Phranctoast says:
Destructoid - 9/10

http://www.destructoid.com/review-pl...e-238694.phtml

Are they Sony ballwashers too?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 20, 2012 8:35:27 AM PST
StriderNeo15 says:
How can this be the actual review if there are no numbers involved huh?!

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 20, 2012 8:36:52 AM PST
uncledonnie3 says:
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Posted on Nov 20, 2012 8:36:57 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 20, 2012 8:37:42 AM PST
M. McFly says:
In summary- Being one-hit killed, which is essentially all the game is, really isn't fun for anyone.

Simply put, this isn't as fun or as strategic as Smash Bros. percentage/ring-out based system. It doesn't really matter what moves you do, as all of them fill up your meter, and none of them have the potential to actually land a killing blow themselves. Fights usually come down to one critical moment where you either land your finisher or dodge theirs. All the fighting before and after isn't about whittling your opponent down or impairing their ability to fight, it's all just fuel for your own tank and a chance at a possible kill down the road.

It's not un-fun, but it's not a blast like the combat system from Smash Bros has been over the years. Sony seems like they were too scared of being called outright thefts by taking the system for their own, but ring-out based play would work much better for this type of game. Being one-hit killed, which is essentially all the game is, really isn't fun for anyone.

Outside of the cool roster, move sets and well-designed levels, the rest of the game feels a bit barebones. The single player story isn't really a story at all. It's just one un-animated voice over-ed intro (poorly drawn, at that) followed by one at the finale. The game just throws you in a ring with one to three opponents you have to beat in either a kill-based or time-based match. The grand boss simply has you fight one, then two, then three opponents in a row before you win. There's just no creativity here the way we saw with memorable fights like Metal Mario, Giant DK or the Master Hand as in SSB. After beating it with two characters, you don't feel like repeating the same process again with all the others.The problem here is that even with the best roster, move sets and levels you could design, if the central combat concept isn't that fun, it's all for nothing. And one-hit kill finisher combos just seem like the wrong choice here.

Perhaps PS All Stars should have taken some more time to refine itself, and positioned itself as a hotly anticipated launch title for the PS4 next year

Posted on Nov 20, 2012 8:58:23 AM PST
That Emu Kid says:
Hatters gonna hat. The IGN reviewer commented in the summary that All Stars is its own animal in the same way that Mortal Kombat is not the same game as Street Fighter. Given my time with the beta, I'm inclined to agree.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 20, 2012 8:59:09 AM PST
That Emu Kid says:
Hey, wait a minute. This isn't a 9 at all!

Posted on Nov 20, 2012 9:01:35 AM PST
"PlayStation has a proud, nearly two-decade-long legacy, and All-Stars celebrates it. It combines characters, environments and ideas into a tight package that's worthy of consideration for anyone who owns a PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita and considers themselves a brand loyalist or simply a longtime fan"

No wonder why I didn't like it. Didn't like the beta, which doesn't surprise me since I didn't like this when it first came out on the N64 all those years ago.
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Discussion in:  Video Games forum
Participants:  34
Total posts:  111
Initial post:  Nov 20, 2012
Latest post:  Nov 20, 2012

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