Tuesday, November 20, 2012

5 PlayStation All Stars Rivalries That Need to Happen Through DLC

The launch of PlayStation All Stars is just around the corner, and Sony have confirmed that the game will most definitely be getting stage and character DLC, revealing the first pair of characters to be Kat from Gravity Rush on the Vita, and Emmett Graves from the PS3’s Starhawk. The best bit is, that for two weeks from their release you can download these characters for free, even if you don’t have the game. So I got thinking about who would be good to see as DLC using both my personal wants and the wants of the fanbase, and decided on 10 characters that would be cool to see and at least semi-plausible because that sounded like a nice, even number. People make lists like these all the time but I figured I’d do something different and come up with pairs of characters that seemed like a good fit together, and come up with a rivalry like in the game, giving them a reason to fight each other. And because I could, I chucked in a mashup stage of the two characters’ franchises. So without further ado, let’s begin!

Ezio Auditore vs. Death

Why Ezio?
Ezio Auditore is one of the biggest faces in gaming at the moment, instantly recognisable by gamers of all varieties. I was actually surprised he wasn’t in the original game, because Sony seemed to be doing a lot of deals with Ubisoft, with exclusive Brotherhood and Assassin’s Creed III DLC, a Vita exclusive game, bundles etc. which I thought was all but confirming an Assassin’s Creed rep being playable in the game. While I don’t know if I’d really consider him a PlayStation All Star, he’s definitely an iconic character with a lot of moveset potential, and Sony seem to be close with his owners. Plus, we’ve seen him translate into a fighting game already with SoulCalibur V. Edit: Completely forgot, but Assassin's Creed started off as a PS3 exclusive, so there you go.
Why Death?
Now, Death isn’t a PlayStation All Star by any means, his game is multiplatform with no exclusive content or ties to the PlayStation brand. That being said, he has plenty of moveset potential, and THQ have a lot to gain from adding him into the game. It’s no secret that THQ are struggling at the moment, and Darksiders II didn’t sell as much as they wanted (which is a shame, because it’s a good game). Putting Death in a game like this gets the game a lot of exposure, and gives us a fun character to use.

Why Rivals?

Death finds Ezio on top of one of the platforms in the rivalry stage as if he was synching at a viewpoint, and questions what he is doing. The two introduce themselves, but when Death introduces himself as ‘Death’, Ezio assumes he is a mercenary and Death is his moniker. Ezio then mocks him because he thinks he’s cocky and that giving himself a name like that is asking for trouble. Death says he’d be more than happy to show him how fitting the name is.

Stage: Venice (Assassin's Creed II)

Arriving in Venice in Assassin’s Creed II was a great moment. It was such a beautiful city, with Renaissance architecture, gondoliers sailing gondolas through the canals, the bright lights of Carnivale, and of course the now iconic ‘Venice Rooftops’ theme. It seems only fair to have this city representing the Assassin’s Creed franchise. The stage would be set in a Venetian street, on the rooftops and the street, with some wooden platforms at the mid-level as well, and a canal flowing through. Being set in the Animus, the pre-match cutscene involves the stage being rendered in the Animus. Part way through the match, the Animus encounters a glitch, and the screen starts flashing red like it does when desynchronisation is imminent in the games, and Corruption from Darksiders II starts flowing through the canal instead of water, which now makes you lose AP if you fall into it. Corruption slowly starts overtaking the stage, giving it the black and yellow colour scheme with Corruption crystals appearing all over the stage, and Shadow Bombs which explode when it, sending opponents flying and making them lose some AP. Eventually the Animus reboots, making the stage revert to the white loading screen, and the original Venice setting is slowly re-rendered like the Dreamscape stage.

Ethan Mars vs. Journey Protagonist (who I will refer to as The Traveller)

Why Ethan?
Heavy Rain is one of the more unique PlayStation exclusive games, and received wide critical acclaim. Being a celebration of PlayStation, it would be good to see some of the unique experiences not done on other consoles be represented in PlayStation All Stars. He would be a great addition moveset wise, as he’s not a combat oriented character in his own game. His moveset could involve things from his everyday life such as dropping plates, throwing a boomerang and the sword fighting he did with his kid, as well as some of the darker/more tense moments of the game such as his agoraphobic stumble and trials he did to win back his son from the Origami Killer, such as speeding in his car for the Trial of the Bear. Also, with Beyond: Two Souls coming out next year (a new game from the creator of Heavy Rain), Ethan being playable could serve as an incentive for people to play Heavy Rain, and then Beyond, to get see the kind of gameplay these games offer.

Why The Traveller?
Journey was an amazing game, it was just so different to other games, and took an approach to multiplayer that on paper doesn’t sound like it would work. It takes players on a beautiful journey, and is a great experience. Adding The Traveller in as DLC would celebrate the variety of videogames in general, and would serve as a representative for PSN-exclusive games as Fat Princess does.

Why Rivals?
Ethan is searching for clues as to the Origami Killer's identity, and notices lots of red, origami like creatures flying around, and follows them. They lead back to The Traveller, whose mysterious appearance leads Ethan to believe they are the Origami Killer.

Stage: Blue Lagoon (Heavy Rain)

 The Blue Lagoon is a nightclub in Heavy Rain where almost all of the protagonists end up at some point. Players can use the dance stages as platforms on an otherwise flat stage, but at some point in the background, you see Norman Jayden head up to Paco’s room. He is soon thrown out, and seen to be in a fight with the Origami Killer. In the fight, Norman’s ARI glasses get knocked off, which glitch up upon hitting the ground and change the landscape to the desert from Journey. Players can run around in the sand and over the sand dunes while Norman and the Killer continue to fight in the background. Occasionally the ribbon dragon creatures from Journey will fly through the stage and can be used as platforms. After a while Norman picks up his glasses, and changes the setting back, but the Killer drags him back into Paco’s room. The fight will then occasionally come back out into view, triggering the scenery change and so on.

Kutaro vs. Pyramid Head

Why Kutaro?
I’ll be honest, I didn’t originally have Kutaro here, I had Nathan Hale from Resistance because people seemed to want him, and Resistance was represented in stages in the game so a character seemed fair. But he seemed really boring, just another gun user who also had super strength and agility and that sort of thing and figured he wouldn’t really add much. So I looked through Sony’s franchises for a character who’d seem a good match-up with Pyramid Head, and remembered seeing the creepy trailers for Puppeteer, which was supposed to be a kid’s game. A protagonist from a more light-hearted ‘horror’ game seemed like a good match, plus he’s a first party character who seems to have some unique moveset potential. Plus, he could have a good chance since Sony will want to plug his upcoming game.

Why Pyramid Head?
Pyramid Head is easily the most iconic character of the Silent Hill franchise, first appearing in Silent Hill 2, which is widely considered one of the greatest survival horror games of all time. Silent Hill was first released on the PlayStation 2, and wasn’t available on other platforms for a few months. He also appears in the new Silent Hill game, Book of Memories, which is a Vita exclusive game which could be promoted through Pyramid Head’s inclusion in PlayStation All Stars.

Why Rivals?
This is a weird rivalry because neither character talks, but I digress. Kutaro is running along with his scissors, and trips over, losing his head, at which point the screen goes black. As he screws his head back on, the scene becomes visible again, and Kutaro finds himself looking up at Pyramid Head, with a pair of scissors lodged in his chest. Pyramid Head pulls the scissors out and throws them to the floor, and points his knife and Kutaro.

Stage: Magical Theatre (Puppeteer)

Silent Hill sounds like the natural choice for a stage out of these two franchises, but hear me out. The Theatre from Puppeteer would have a really unique visual style, resembling an old puppet theatre, and like the game can have new sets and platform switch in and out as need be- one of those sets being Silent Hill. Little wooden cut outs of Silent Hill locations decorate the stage, with puppets of the various characters and enemies walking around, while a puppet show-esque variation of the Silent Hill theme plays in the background. It’d make for a visually unique stage that could change a lot throughout the course of the match, and incorporates another mash-up that isn’t just ‘evil guy from another game appears in background and attacks’. It’d also prove for a rather creepy stage, staying true to both franchises.

Cloud vs. Wander

Why Cloud?
Cloud is without a doubt one of the most famous PlayStation faces, and he’s not even owned by Sony, which is why I suspect he wasn’t in the original roster, as Square-Enix were probably pushing for Lightning’s inclusion. But maybe now that more money can be made off him via DLC Square will be more willing to include him in the game. I personally think FF7 is overrated and wouldn’t be ecstatic over Cloud’s inclusion, but I can’t deny his importance to the PlayStation brand, and its fans, and with a name like PlayStation All Stars, you’ve got to include this guy.

Why Wander?
Wander himself is not an iconic character, if you mentioned him by name I don’t think many people would know who you’re talking about. But mention Shadow of the Colossus, and you’d grab people’s attention. Shadow of the Colossus is a beautiful game, and is one that has such a high critical appreciation, not just by gamers and reviewers, but game critics and theorists as well.

Why Rivals?
Wander's sword points him toward Cloud. Cloud asks what he's doing, but Wander remains silent. Each assumes the other is a foe, and a fight breaks out.

Stage: Forbidden Realm (Shadow of the Colossus)

With how praised Shadow of the Colossus' environments and aesthetics are it'd be wrong to not give it a stage. There's a variety of areas it could be set, but of course there'd have to be a colossus wandering in the background. Shinra planes fly in, attacking the colossus, who tries to swat then away like King Kong. Occasionally it will knock a plane down, which will fly towards the stage, blowing up as it crashes, damaging players caught in the blast.

Crash vs. Robbit

Why Crash?
This shouldn't be a question. Crash Bandicoot is one of, if not THE, best-selling franchise on the original PlayStation, and is known to gamers and non-gamers alike. Every friend I've told about this game has responded with "Is Crash Bandicoot in it?" and have been disappointed when I say no. Crash Bandicoot needs to be in this game. One thing is standing in the way of that- Activision. Superbot have said time and time again they know the fans want Crash, that they've tried for all the fan favourite characters, and that it's up to the IP holder whether they get to use their characters or not. So it’s pretty obvious that Activision are standing in the way, likely asking for a ridiculous sum for a character they don’t even use anymore. But putting Crash in as DLC which will likely bring in more profit, the misers might be content. Or perhaps they’d prefer if Superbot locked him away on disc and forced you to buy a tacky toy in order to play as him. Or mayb- Gah, this is becoming an anti-Activision rant, isn’t it? tl;dr Crash would be a great addition, Activision won’t let him be in, Activision should let him be in.

Why Robbit?
You don’t know who Robbit is!? Well, to be frank, neither did I until a couple of days ago. A sizeable amount of people on message boards were saying they wanted him in, so I looked him up, and he seemed to be a character from a well-received first party game that soon fell into obscurity, which made me feel he’d be a great representative of Sony’s past. I when games like this bring back obscure, cult characters in celebration of a company’s history, like Pit in Smash Bros., it shows the company hasn’t forgotten its roots or the fans that brought them to where they are. So it’d be nice to see a character like this in Robbit.

Why Rivals?
Crash sees Robbit hopping/flying around the rival area, which makes him suspect him of being a super creature created by Cortex to try and stop him, so he attacks him.

Stage: Uka Tree (Crash Bandicoot)

This was the most iconic location I could think of from the Crash series off the top of my head (mind you I’m not as familiar with the series as I probably should be), and could provide some interesting gameplay. It’s a big tree located on the Wumpa Islands, named after Uka Uka, one of the main antagonists of the series. The stage could take place on the outside of the tree, and gradually ascend like the Alden’s Tower stage in the game. At some point, Baron Aloha from Jumping Flash! will appear, ripping the tree off from the ground and taking it into space. In space, there’s a few smaller landmasses to the side of the tree which can be used as platforms.

So, what do you think? Good choices? Missing someone important? Let me know in the comments below! Or don’t. Jerks.

1 comment:

  1. Abe versus Blasto, asides from being a hilarious matchup they actually work well because well... Abe looks like something Blasto would vaporize while on the search for babes and saving Uranus. Plus who would want to hear (although old clips) Phil Heartman yelling during PS All Stars, the stage could be under a spooce tree.
    http://community.us.playstation.com/t5/image/serverpage/image-id/35499iB51BA641F308DEA2/image-size/original?v=mpbl-1&px=-1 also Rue from Threads of Fate needs to join in too, maybe Tomba tries to eat him while he's in his polywog form