NetherRealm Studios’ Injustice: Gods Among Us is a fantastic fighting game based upon well known DC Comic heroes and villains. It has become an instant favorite among fighting game fans and DC fans alike (check out the Pixelvolt review here). It’s approachable enough with its over-the-top goodness to make it a fun pick-up-and-play button masher, but also deep enough for serious tournament fans to create ridiculous combo strings. NetherRealm included a variety of inputs to welcome Mortal Kombat veterans and Capcom fighters alike, a first for any fighting game in recent memory.
With DC giving NetherRealm their property and their blessing, they were allowed to choose the cast of characters and create the ludicrous story that serves as the backdrop to the game. Although the story is completely insane, the game itself has one of the most fleshed out arcade modes of any fighter out there in regards to narrative. The cast of characters fits to NetherRealm’s strengths by having three distinctive categories of fighters; Power – ala Superman, Acrobatic – ala The Flash, and Technical – ala Batman.
With DLC characters coming out – Batgirl and Lobo already released with Mortal Kombat’s Scorpion on the way – one final character remains (final for the time being). Far be it for us to criticize NetherRealm’s choices, but they seem to be slightly uninspired. With the plethora of characters in the DC Universe stable at your fingertips, and a designated limit of four characters for DLC, another hero from the bat family is just pandering. And Scorpion? He doesn’t belong and seems more like a play from vanity rather than sticking to the DC theme (we all know the monstrosity that is Mortal Kombat vs. DC, and if you don’t, count yourself lucky).
So here’s the top 5 list of characters (in no particular order) that should be given a passing chance to be in Injustice. This is by no means a definitive list, as I don’t even think such a list is possible. I won’t be going into detail about their origins, because that’s what Wikipedia is for. Or you can just go out and buy comics like a real man.
5. Toyman - The Toyman/Toyboy character has more commonly been seen in the animated version of the DC Universe, but that doesn’t detract from his possibilities in the game. Mainly a Superman villain with a number of incarnations, we’ll be focusing on the use of the Toyboy avatar as a playable character. His creepy lifeless eyes and unflinching smile could give Joker a run for his money.
As a technical character, he would use a variety of deadly toys as projectiles to attack opponents; tanks, planes, cars, robot spiders, etc. As a big fan of explosives, timed attacks and strategies could also serve as a vital component to this character. It would also introduce someone into the roster that’s lower than 5 feet.
4. Mirror Master - Enter the Mirror Master, a Flash villain with a veritable suite of abilities. Ignore the fact that he needs a mirror to accomplish just about anything, and instead, look at his powers: invisibility, holograms, teleportation, and a laser pistol.
Another technical character with a focus on ranged attacks, he could easily teleport around the arena to do various attacks. With the use of mirrors, he could also reflect laser shots or create duplicates of himself to confuse opponents. On paper this guy already sounds more interesting than Scorpion… but who doesn’t?
3. Animal Man - If you don’t know Buddy Baker the Animal Man then stop reading, go to your closest comic book store, and pick up the New 52 run written by Jeff Lemire. Seriously, go! You back now? Okay, good.
But, if you do know him then you must be asking, “Why? He’s not part of the Justice League?”
Like I stated above, anyone in the DC Universe is fair game, and with the ability to call on the power of any animal in existence, the possibilities for this character are ridiculous. As an acrobatic character he could call on the power of a bird to fly, power of a lion to pounce and maul, power of a cockroach to be durable… hey, like I said, ridiculous.
2. Cheetah - It really is beyond me why NetherRealm would not include Wonder Woman’s arch-nemesis. They were looking to balance the roster in terms of gender and instead chose Ares. Why? Is it because she’s practically nude? That seems like a plus in our book. But clothing choices aside, Cheetah is serious business.
Possessed by the Goddess of the Hunt, Cheetah would obviously be an acrobatic character. Fierce hand-to-hand, foot-to-face combat would ensue, and due to her cat-like abilities, she’d be the only character in the roster to be able to wall climb/jump, because why not?
1. Etrigan/Jason Blood - The picture itself is proof enough, but we can go into detail. One of the great demons from Hell. Has the power of hellfire.. Can fly and has strength to rival Superman. Proficient at magic and can fire energy blasts. I could go on.
The fun doesn’t end there. He’s bound to a human, Jason Blood, who is also adept at magic and hand-to-hand fighting. This could be a power and acrobatic character in which you could switch forms and attacks, similar to Wonder Woman and her stances, but considerably more involved. Just look at him and tell me you aren’t impressed. It’s the muscles, right?
What do you think? What are your choices and why? Let me know in the comments below.