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Tips and Tricks For Earning your Black Belt in PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale

December 11, 2012 Written by Jesse Meikle

There are 629 different FFA titles to be earned in PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale, but the only way to unlock them is to best the often fierce competition in the ranked tournament mode. Before I share some hopefully helpful hints – an explanation of All-Stars tournament system is necessary.

In PlayStation All-Stars you earn yourself a different colored belt each online season, and you unlock FFA titles based on how many, and what color of belts you’ve earned. You progress to higher belts by winning matches, and pushing your current belt rank closer to “100″ before it reaches the next belt level.

If you’re serious about achieving a higher belt rank in Battle Royale’s competitive FFA, then these 10 often overlooked tips may prove useful:

  1. Primarily use level 1 supers if possible.
  2. Scope out the competition while the battle loads.
  3. L1 is your best friend.
  4. Stick to, and master whichever character you feel most comfortable with.
  5. Utilize every tool in your arsenal.
  6. Practice.
  7. Acquaint yourself with the weapon pick-ups.
  8. Keep an eye on, and bully your opponents AP collection.
  9. If you’re desperate – pick Kratos or Raiden.
  10. Do not disconnect.

The winner of a free-for-all match will generally be the player who racked up the most kills (kills=2 points, deaths=-1 points) so it’s important to use your AP as efficiently as possible, which is why you should stick to the low-cost level 1 supers. There are exceptions of course, with characters like PaRappa and Sackboy featuring unreliable level 1′s, yet powerful level 2′s which should typically be used instead. Also look online to see if there’s any way to combo into your level 1 super, this skill can be invaluable for characters with tricky to land supers.

PlayStation All-Stars plays similar to rock-paper-scissors. Certain characters are more effective against some, but weaker against others. A slower, close range character will typically get slaughtered when approaching Kratos offensively for example, and Sweet Tooth’s camping guerrilla tactics won’t fair as well against gun based brutes like Ratchet and Jak. When the match is loading you should be gauging your opponents. Try to figure out which characters to avoid, whom to abuse, and how you plan to tackle the competition.

The L1 (block) button is absolutely critical, you won’t get far at all without abundant use of it. Using L1 plus left or right on the left analog stick will roll you right and left, always try to make sure you’re not in the middle of a crowd, and rather attacking on the outskirts of one. You also receive a split-second of invincibility when rolling. The block button on it’s own is particularly useful while contending with overly offensive characters like Kratos and Raiden. You can also block in the air with L1, this is the only way to block supers (rather than simply avoiding them.)

There’s going to be a lot of temptation to spread your game time across several different characters, and campaigns. Doing so will minimize the impact you can have while pouring your precious time into a single character. This may seem simple minded and silly, but what many don’t realize is just how fully featured every character is, and using a combatant to the best of their extensive strengths is not simply an overnight affair.

This is why you will need to both memorize every one of your character’s useful time-specific moves, while actually utilizing them mid-combat. It’s also important to make sure to leverage all your tools simultaneously when possible – a Sly, or especially Sweet Tooth, player should almost always have a mine planted, a Ratchet wielder should deploy Mr. Zurkon and tesla spikes whenever they have space to breath, etc.

It will take a lot of practice before your mind immediately knows what buttons to push and when in certain cases, so the more you play the better you’ll become. You’ll also want to play the combo trials for the character you’re learning, try to pick up some combos you feel you can implement among your current game plan, often the combos are simply an extension of what you’re already doing.

A similar mentality can be attributed to the weapons, you won’t be making a serious impact until you know the ins and outs of Battle Royale, as such you’ll want to study every weapon. The weapons aren’t typically radical game changers, but some will do wonders in generating or depleting the AP of yourself or opposition. There are definitely weapons you won’t want to utilize, and that’s fine.

You’ll also want to pay notice to how much AP your opponents have, and which special corresponds to the level they’re on. For example, if you see a Radec with 2 AP bars running away from the group, then he’s likely gearing up to wipe you all out with his forward clearing Arc Cannon, so you’ll want to move to the opposite side of where your opponents are – this will nearly guarantee your safety in this specific situation. You can fight against particularly troublesome upcoming supers by throwing opponents with the right stick. The more AP a character has, the more they will lose if thrown.

I’m going to hate this paragraph more than anything I’ve ever written, but, if your only concern is climbing the belt hierarchy, then choosing Kratos or Raiden is your best bet. There’s a reason why you’ll find at least one of these characters in every ranked match – they’re clearly overpowered. Kratos has top speed, good range, fast AP build, a tool for every situation, he can turn on a dime mid-combo, and he has great supers. Raiden, on the other hand, is very combo-centric, incredible fast, can clear the distance between himself and his opponents in an instant, generates AP quickly, and he has arguably the very best level 1, and level 2 supers in the game.

Finally, remember not to ditch a competitive game, or even play with an iffy connection. If you leave a match for any reason you’ll receive a severe gut-punch to your rank. Last night I went from a green-belt to a low blue belt from disconnections alone.

Those are just some general tips to doing well in PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale’s ranked FFA tournament mode. Do you have anything to add? I’m sure several of you have figured out the intricacies, and nuances of Battle Royale better than I.

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