At first glance, most might write off this game as a Sony-branded Super Smash Bros. clone. While in some ways that may be true, that would be unfair to the game since it does a lot to differ itself from its competitor’s counterpart thanks to its many tweaks and own unique style to various parts of the game.

More importantly, who doesn’t want to play as any of the multiple iconic characters of Sony’s past franchises? Who do you think will win if Kratos goes up against the all so witty treasure hunter Nathan Drake?

Tweaking the already perfect Smash Bros. formula

In order to win one of these chaotic duels in the arena is completely different from attaining victory in Nintendo’s franchise. You’ll beat down on your opponents with three of your face buttons again and again and again, but not once will they ever lose health.

You probably think I’m kidding so I’m sorry to say it, but I’m not.

Instead, as you beat down on your enemies, each attack will build up your super meter that when filled, allows you to release a devastating attack on your foes that will kill any of those affected. The super meter is gated by three tiers. Each tier grows progressively stronger attack wise, so the longer you wait, the bigger the pay off.

Fat Princess for example will ride on a giant chicken at level two that will kill/wipe out anyone in her path. Sweet Tooth will strap a bomb to his opponent with a level one attack  or turn into a massive mech-like form at level 3.

But one thing is for certain; no matter what level your super attack may be at, they’re the only way you can kill your enemies and gain points. Those with the most points at the end of a dual win the match. It’s that simple. And if you don’t feel like taking part in the typical free for all deathmatch that many of use are probably accustomed to, you could team up with a friend and take part in a two versus two duel.


Sony’s library versus Nintendo’s

Each stage in the game is one based on a level in a past Sony game, but each level will change into a different one halfway through the map, which can really change-up the course of the battle as you’ll have to adjust to your new environment since no two maps are alike.

Playing on a God of War map with Hades thrashing about is an awesome experience and is one of my most favorite maps I’ve ever played. But playing on the San Francisco map from Resistance 2 as it is under attack by the Chimera is equally exciting, or the Loco Roco stage with its nifty art style is just as fun in its own way.

But there is one area that I don’t think Sony can match Nintendo with blow for blow, and that is in terms of character rosters. Sure, Sony does have a lot of cool, iconic heroes and villains to choose from such as Radec, Nathan Drake, Cole, or even Fat Princess and Sackboy. I just don’t think anything could top a duel between something like Mario and Luigi, or Kirby going at it with Link in Super Smash Bros.

But Battle Royale can surpass Nintendo in other ways, such as its ranking system, something Super Smash Bros. hasn’t had at all so far. Each individual character in the game can level up if you’re playing as them, allowing you to tweak the characters themselves, or you can unlock new costumes, taunts, music, victory poses and more for them.

And if you’re bored with playing the game against the computer or don’t have any friends around at the time to jump into a local game, you could take the fight online, which isn’t any different from local play. Online, you can further progress your characters, keep track of your stats through the leaderboard system, but other than that, there isn’t much else to do.

The neat thing about playing online though is that the game uses Sony’s new PS3/Vita cross play system, meaning your same game is on the opposite system you’re playing, in this case the PS3/Vita. So when you jump online, or even into a local game, there might be a Vita player in your party.

The Verdict

All-Stars is a very similar game to Smash Bros. but it has its own unique twist on the two games’ styled formula that makes for a much enjoyable experience for you and your friends. It’s also the perfect game to kill a quick few minutes if you’re on the go with the Vita, thanks to the integrated cross play system. If you’re looking for a fun, harmless game, PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale should be a must buy for your Sony system.

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