By Danyel Poindexter, Staff Writer
“Injustice 2” will not be released until May 16 of this year, but somehow the game is still causing quite a buzz in the gaming community. “Injustice 2” surrounds the infamous Justice League in another universe. The game—developed by NetherRealm Studios and published by Warner Bros—is the sequel to “Injustice: Gods Among Us,” released back in November 2013. The initial game followed a storyline of two universes in which the Justice League exists, but in one, Joker successfully tricks Superman with gas, making him think that his pregnant wife, Louis, was Doomsday (a known villain in the DC Universe). The event causes Superman to kill his wife, and that, in turn, causes him to go into a downward spiral of darkness. In the first universe, this same event happens, but Batman arrives in time to stop Joker from completing his ploy to deceive Superman; thus, he never becomes evil, or “dark.” The Batman in the second universe, in desperate need of help, goes to the first universe to request aid from the other Batman.
So far, the “Injustice 2” storyline seems to build around Batman and his allies working toward a common goal to put the pieces of society back together and, of course, struggling with it. In the midst of it all, a new threat, Brainiac, appears. The story is still a little unclear to some people. Many speculate that dark Superman either escapes—or is released—and is once again out for blood. It also seems to some that Batman is beginning to condone villainous actions, turning a blind eye. While the storyline of this series is up for debate, the real mystery lies in the gaming graphics and structure. The beta, released late January, became available to those who had the chance to register. Though it is now closed, most of the gaming community has had an opportunity to experience or at least witness the actual gameplay.
The introduction of all-new characters, like Black Canary and Swamp Thing, means a bigger Injustice League to play with. This development is exciting to the fan base, and many players have given due credit to the creators for expanding the Injustice League gameplay. However, it’s hard not to notice that some characters received a lot more layout in terms of build and quality than others. Whereas there is nothing to be psyched about as it pertains to Wonder Woman’s visual design, Blue Beetle has a sleeker design and stronger features. Even Superman has turned gears in facial and body structure since the first game. He looks older, which is a good touch—if it is on purpose. That being said, it is hard to tell if the creators simply could not decide on an exact face or if they tried to combine actor Henry Cavill’s facial structure with the first Injustice Superman’s face.
The outcome is underwhelming, and while, yes, it is still a beta, Superman seems again to be lacking in moves. Supergirl—though comic book-wise she was always the strongest—holds more flexibility and usage when attacking than he does. Most of the characters’ facial structures are satisfactory. There is not much to say about it except that the expressions and skin quality are a little dull. Indeed, the graphics are nothing special, and the render time is efficient but a little choppy at moments. With the year being 2017, you would think that the creators would have stepped up their game; instead, much of the clear and sharp quality is sacrificed for the cut scenes during story moments or fatal moves.
We are talking about a beta, but typically, with regards to gameplay graphics, whatever you see in the official announcement is what you get when you buy the game. It is quite exciting that the female characters are recently being brought to the spotlight, but it is also quite exciting to see how many more characters and skill sets are going to be brought to the table. For those wondering, the mobile version has also been confirmed. “Injustice 2” will be available on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Android, and iOS.