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So I am a lucky dog. I had the pleasure of being there in Hollywood for Sony's unveiling of Playstation All-Stars: Battle Royale, and I came away really stoked with how it looks and plays so far. You can check out my full preview on it at the link below. Gameplay footage is at the bottom of the second page.
I think it's incredible that they got guys like Ed Ma to work on the game with them. Overall, the entire team is a bunch of fight nerds. Heck, the game's director, Omar Kendall told me actually comes here to IPW for his fighting game fix. I even did a nice long interview with the lead combat designer Paul Edwards, who counts Virtua Fighter among his favorite fighting games. He likes how, for all its complexity, “it gets you playing against the other player very fast, instead of the character.” I think it's a good sign that the person responsible for the battle system understands and appreciates that concept.
A lot is already being made about the fact that you can only score kills with supers, and that there are no ring outs of any kind. I said it in my preview, but I'll repeat: I really think it opens the game up and makes it less chaotic. Blow for blow, you have to outfight your opponent and build that meter before them, and then you have to set them up for your super by either comboing into it, or just baiting and reading them. Personally, that appeals to me more than how Smash is currently played.
Also, people don't realize just how different level 1, 2 and 3 supers are. Level 1's are generally single target so if you can kill consistently with it in a 1v1 match, it's more efficient than building up for a level 2. Good players will be able to react to and avoid lvl 1's if you don't set them up for it though. Some level 2's and 3's are guaranteed kills in certain situations so you may be better off saving up. There's also a ton of variety in what parts of the screen they hit, speed/priority etc. Most supers have some I-frames at startup too, so counter supering will definitely be doable. I'm interested to see how it all plays out.
So what do you think? Still have reservations? Questions? Hit up the comments, or if you feel like asking be stuff directly, tweet them at me at @WK_VGAMS