E3 2012: PlayStation All Stars Battle Royale feels a bit shallow

Sections: Consoles, Conventions, E3, Fighting, Handhelds, PS3, Vita

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PlayStation All Stars Battle Royale is often described as Sony’s version of Super Smash Bros. It’s easy to make that assertion based on gameplay videos, but it really takes hands-on experience to understand if and how it differentiates itself from Super Smash Bros. I stopped by Sony’s booth to find this out for myself.

I played PlayStation All Stars Battle Royale with two human opponents and a computer-controlled bot. One of my opponents played on a Vita which acted as an alternate screen/controller replacement for the PS3. The Vita version was synced perfectly to the PS3 version. The only decision the person next to me had to make was choosing which screen he preferred to look at.

I decided to play as Sweet Tooth because the other visually dominating character, Kratos, was already taken. The match began with me instantly realizing how slow Sweet Tooth was. While Sly Cooper, Kratos and Fat Princess seemed to glide around the God of War-inspired level, Sweet Tooth was menacingly creeping towards the action. As you probably expected, the action in PlayStation All Stars Battle Royale is all over the place. You can lose sight of your character if you aren’t paying attention. At the same time, I didn’t feel like anything I did had any real impact. It was never too clear which character was winning or which attacks were doing the most damage.

The mode I played had a time limit that determined the winner based on how many deaths he or she had. I came in second place, but I thought my performance was pretty bad.

I guess what I’m trying to say is PlayStation All Stars Battle Royale wasn’t exciting. The match actually felt like it lasted too long. It lacks a certain charm that Smash Bros. has. The success of Smash Bros. isn’t something that can be easily duplicated. All Stars has the basics down, but I feel that it lacks a soul. I’m not sure if even a flurry of iconic PlayStation characters can step in and fill that void.

Read [GamerTell @ E3 2012]

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