Preview: PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale

There were three words you didn't want to say around the Sony private preview room during E3, but I was fortunate enough to be in attendance when someone muttered, "Super Smash Bros." while at the PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale area.

What can I say? I didn't do it, and I enjoy a bit of drama now and again.

As every Sony representative I could see turned and glared at the person in error, I was very glad I didn't make the comparison...until now, that is.

If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck...well, Sony's Battle Royale (shortened only for my poor typing fingers) was pretty much damn like Nintendo's Super Smash Bros. Sorry I couldn't keep up with the analogy.

I had the chance to play a couple rounds of Sony's new star-studded fighter, and it's impossible to compare it to, other game. Though, I fail to see why the comparison is a bad one; Nintendo's offering is a fun multiplayer experience, and so too is Battle Royale. I tried out both Big Daddy and Sly Cooper, fighting against three other previewers, and was all smiles with each match.

Big Daddy is surprisingly agile for a hulking abomination, but has a sense of power about him that you'd expect. Sly Cooper on the other hand plays as a very different type of character...and in my opinion, one that'll take a bit of practice to master. His ability to go invisible? Very cool.

Sly aside, it seemed as if the characters were fairly simple to understand. Attacks are straight forward, and strategy is mostly thrown out the window as you jump about with friends and try to deliver damage.

The TV that I was playing on was being used by two PS3 players, whilst two other gamers were duking it out on separate PS Vitas. If I hadn't seen the portable gaming units in front of me, I'd have never known. Cross-play is a wonderous thing, Sony -- keep it up.

Even though Sony might not actively want you to make the comparison to Nintendo's earlier offering, the game is exactly what you'd expect from your past experiences. This time around, you've got an arsenal of Sony's finest franchises at your disposal. Fanboys and multiplayer fiends alike should go play when Battle Royale is released in Q4 this year.

About the Author
Steve Wright

Steve Wright, aka Stevivor: A Canadian-Australian gay gaming geek, freelance journalist, sweet games blog owner, ice hockey player/fan, beer aficionado and tech trainer. Steve is proud to be the Australian iiNet TopGeek 2.0! Check him out on Facebook, Twitter and Google+.

  • Mike

    It’s a shame that you weren’t the one to mention SSB in a question to the Sony reps. It’s certainly what was on the minds of everyone at the preview, not to mention your readers. Video game journalism needs more reporters that have the balls to point out an elephant in the room like that.

    • Steve Wright

      What exact purpose would that have achieved?

      • Arthur Kotsopoulos

        Agree with Steve & Albert. In the gaming industry you need to be professional when talking to developers and checking out every game.

        Sure it may be on your mind but you never ask it to the reps or developers because they get enough of that from the general gamer on a day to day basis.

        Being professional and asking the right questions regarding the game itself it what separates you from the fanboys and narrow minded journalists who have no respect.

        • Mike

          Arthur- You’re certainly correct that it’s all about asking the right questions. Anyone who has played SSB is going to want to know how Sony’s new game will compare to it. A question like “A lot of fans are comparing this game to SSB. What new features does PASBR offer to gamers who already like that franchise?” would answer that while still maintaining professionalism.

          It’s not like these types of questions are unheard of, either. When the DOTA clones were being released they all had to answer the question of why a DOTA fan would want to consider playing their game. Similarly, anytime a new MMO is announced one of the first things they are asked is how they plan on competing with WoW.

          (Apologies to the mods for the multiple posts. I realized too late that there was no edit button, so if you’d like to consolidate these all into one comment it would be much appreciated.

      • Mike

        Well, for starters you could address a question that’s on the minds of all your readers, and give Sony a chance have their own say about it. After all, you yourself made the comparison in the article anyway.

        How does Sony plan on differentiating this game from SSB? What are they going to do to improve on Nintendo’s formula? These are all valid questions, and I don’t see them as being particularly rude or “fanboyish”.

  • Albert

    Nothing at all. When there were a million clones of Battle Arena Toshinden, Mortal Kombat and Street Fighter back in the day no one said anything. So why should we keep harping on about SSB and PASBR? In journalism you are a professional not a fanboy. You don’t stand there talking about SSB like some child trying to taunt them.

    • Mike

      Whoever said anything about taunting Sony? Isn’t it much more respectful to politely ask them about something directly than to keep quiet yet frame your entire preview around the presumption that Sony doesn’t want to admit to basing PASBR on SSB?