Onwards to the Sony Computer Entertainment corner! There were a lot of games to choose from here, and only so many hours in a day.
PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale
As a self-proclaimed Super Smash Bros. veteran, I have been curious (read: skeptical (read: contemptuous)) about this title. Anyway, there was no line for this one.
I played two games of PlayStation All-Stars, each a four-play free-for-all. There were eight characters and five lands to choose from. I first played as Jak, who kind of jerked around a lot and was difficult to get used to. The second time I chose Kratos, and I rocked worlds.
PlayStation All-Stars felt pretty much like Super Smash Bros. The big difference was that I couldn’t really tell when I killed someone. The first time I died I just kind of dissolved into dust and reappeared in a random spot a couple seconds later. I still don’t get how exactly you get someone to die. I was able to kill people using my special attacks, which you charge up by doing something. Maybe hitting people or maybe by collecting those weird orbs, I really don’t know. But whether you can kill someone with any other attack, I cannot answer. It was always clear to me when I landed a kill even when I first played Super Smash Bros. Maybe it just takes some getting used to, but it seems like any fighting game should make it clear when you’ve landed a kill. Either way, it’s no Smash Bros.
Another unremarkable Sony title. I didn’t play much of this because I quickly became bored. I hate to keep accusing Sony of copying Nintendo, but the big boxing glove that races you along the track is exactly like the Bullet Bill item from Mario Kart. There’s just not a lot to make this game stand out. It’s probably more fun with friends and it handles pretty well, so I’m sure it’s a perfectly good alternative for people who don’t want a Wii.
One thing I did appreciate is that it looks like the game’s “story mode” forces you to participate in battle-style games. I always loved the Mario Kart battle mode but none of my friends seemed to like it very much, and that made me sad. Unfortunately, the one battle mode game I did play was in a tiny room rather than a big arena. So mostly it was chaotic and annoying.
My impression of Sony from these two titles is that they need to stop trying to push a mascot onto us and focus on putting out original, quality games. Nintendo’s got the goofy mascot character battling thing locked up. We don’t need any more of that.