Yesterday I was reading an interesting article on Gamemoir about the go to genre of action fighters when it comes to licensing caped superhero games. It was a good read, and I suggest that you read it over before continuing with my blog post. My only comment is that I think the author missed the point on what Injustice was meant to be. NetherRealm Studios didn’t want to make a Superhero game but instead a fighting game with Superheroes.
But it did bring up an interesting topic about the caped superheroes games focusing a bit too much on the action in videogames. I touched on this a bit when I asked where is a good Doctor Who game (Be MOP #302) but how could anyone pull it off?
Ignoring the fact that most superheroes comic books are based in and spawned from action, how can you create any other non-action based gameplay with them? Recent Spider-man games has a good way simulating the feel of web-slinging and the Arkham series perfectly captures Batman’s gliding and gadgets but what about the heroes with more interesting and extensive move sets?
The timelord only known as The Doctor is all about being the smartest person in the room and then uses his brilliance to get himself, his friends, or even an entire planet out of peril at the last possible minute. How can you properly show that in a game, playing as the Doctor, without dumbing down the conflict or the brilliant solution at the end of the episode.
Could a game developer make an interesting DareDevil game where it’s one part action beat them up -making sure that the thugs and crimelords ends up in police custody- and one part playing as the prosecutor making an iron clad case making sure these bad guys get sent to prison.
Maybe there could be the courtroom challenge of making an argument for their crime while not using evidence that would place this New York Lawyer at scene of the crime.
I mentioned on my blog before but the closest thing we have to a proper green lantern game, with the ability to create any energy constructs you desire was the Scribblenauts series. Even Scribblenauts Unmasked lets you unlock a Green lantern outfit that automatically gives you fight and the ability to shoot green lasers from the ring
The bigger question is how could anyone even being to start making a balanced game that lets the players have all of Superman’s powers off the bat.
I am not saying that a good game starring The Doctor, Daredevil, or a properly balanced Superman is impossible but I think in order to make it work we need a ground breaking team, like what Rocksteady Studios did for Batman.
PS: To anyone that makes a good Superman videogame there is a Nobel Praise waiting for you.
Be MOP focuses on the world of videogames with my own reflections about the current news and developments that happens throughout the gaming industry. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays