Daily Reaction: Should PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale Include More Classic Characters?

Daily Reaction is a PSLS exclusive feature where Sebastian Moss & Dan Oravasaari discuss today’s most hard-hitting topics every single weekday.

The roster for the highly anticipated brawler PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale has been of much debate since its announcement earlier this year. As characters that were once thought to be impossible to show up in a brawler (ie…Toro & Fat Princess), to almost forgotten characters like Spike from Ape Escape, and even the newly announced Evil version of Cole McGrath and Raiden, it’s impossible to tell who will show up next (unless it’s been leaked). With that Sebastian and Dan from PlayStation LifeStyle set out to write to Santa to beg and plead for some more of our favorites to show up.

Dan: The best part of PSASBR is that Sony can really reach into a very big pool of characters from its backlog and show just how limited its obvious competitor Super Smash Brothers is. With the ability to throw in characters that have been forgotten into a big title creates a good amount of buzz and potential for those IP’s to see a return, Sony can really do the same thing as Nintendo’s brawler but on a bigger scale. As such, a few of the characters I am hoping for have become a little dusty. One of the most likely characters to see a return in my opinion is Samanosuke Akechi from the Onimusha series. A franchise that has been sadly been missing this generation, even though it has still remained burning in the hearts of a number of fans. The other option I would hope for, and would be equally excited for would be, Brave Fencer Musashi – Even though he had a short life on the earlier PlayStation consoles, he would be another good choice for a samurai option in the game. Even still, there would be numerous sword wielding options as characters from the Monster Hunter franchise, Lightning from FFXIII, Sora from Kingdom Hearts, or even bring back Eiji Shinjo from the Battle Arena Toshinden series. All would make wonderful additions to a brawler, while still reminding gamers of the impact that PlayStation has had on the games industry over the years.

Seb: While ideally I’d love a bunch of the more obscure characters that have a cult following or are rather dated, this game is going to have a tough time selling with Sony’s marketing department at the helm. What it needs first and foremost is big IPs, big characters that will give it the push it needs. For example, Captain Price from COD is one of the series’ more memorable characters, has a huge following, and could be used as a substitute for Snake if he doesn’t end up being in the game. Like the characters in there already – Spike from Ape Escape? He’s not exactly an instantly recognizable character for the average gamer, not to mention the fact that he looks weird and out of place when fighting more mature characters like Kratos. They could at least have used an Ape, which would have been a great fighting character.

As to who I want, Crash Bandicoot and Spyro are really obvious and awesome ones, and I wouldn’t mind some more contemporary current-gen characters like Ezio or Connor from Assassin’s Creed, some Japanese icons like Kazuma from Yakuza and, most of all, Chell from Portal. Now you can’t tell me that she wouldn’t be incredible.

Dan: I think PSASBR has already put enough AAA characters in the game to appease a great deal of the hardcore audience, but they need to start rounding out the roster to have a bigger draw for the uninitiated audience. As if someones mom walked into Best Buy and saw a shirtless guy, a dressed up raccoon, and a fat lady fighting, they would be confused and unsure if this is something their child would like. Covering all of the normal bases like samurais, ninjas, knights, and so forth would allow anyone to pick up the box without even knowing any of the characters and see some potential. Having characters like Captain Price, would just seem obscure to anyone other than the die-hard CoD fan – so putting someone more interesting looking like Ghost, or even crazier like a Nazi Zombie would add humor and a zombie. CAUSE EVERY GAME NEEDS ZOMBIES! Doing this would draw in the crowd beyond those already interested in the title, and leave room for later DLC characters.

If Sony was to leave a number of the bigger names out, they would also leave open the option of DLC characters, something that could extend the life of the title, and make 3rd party support easier. Having a big name like Cloud from FFVII as a DLC character, would allow Sony to negotiate easier with companies like Square-Enix, as they could split the profits gained from specific characters easier. With that I actually would love the idea of more characters released later as DLC, it could allow more well known mascots from 3rd party developers to be brought over into PSASBR. As such having a Moogle from the Final Fantasy series would be amazing, simply as it would be a well known character that could also bring in the female audience as there is a lack of “cute” characters already.

Other Noteworthy characters:

  • Kri from Mark of Kri
  • Abe from Oddworld
  • Buzz host from the Buzz franchise
  • Faith from Mirror’s Edge
  • Gabe Logan from Syphon filter
  • Ellen Page’s character, Jodie Holmes, from Beyond: Two Souls

And for the final boss:

  • A Starhawk Mech
  • Kevin Butler
  • Chuck Norris
  • Colossus from Shadow of the Colossus

Seb: Cute? It’s bad enough having a game with Kratos in it that has no blood… And the Buzz guy? The series is dead, Relentless has moved on to the Kinect. And it’s not as if he’s a great fighter, he doesn’t really make sense. Perhaps Buzz could be a stage, with characters jumping around on buzzers answering questions while fighting to unlock rewards. And Jodie Holmes? Yeah, she could be in there… if Sony wanted to completely undermine David Cage’s whole drive to make his games and characters different and more mature.

But I agree, zombies would be a great thing, how about a mashup of zombie games, with players choosing Chuck Greene, Lee Everett or Leon S Kennedy to fight off hordes of the undead. That would make anyone buy the game.

However, I don’t want too many characters – they have a limited development time, and even with the delay, I wonder if they can fix all the balancing issues people have complained about in the beta. Quality over quantity is always preferable, and I don’t mind DLC coming later if it’s actually developed post-release.

So, to contradict what I just said, here’s some characters I’d like:

  • Sir Daniel Fortesque (probably going to happen as he’s on the leaked list)
  • Mark Hammond from The Getaway
  • Old Dante, or no Dante
  • Emmett Graves from Starhawk
  • Kat from Gravity Rush
  • Isaac Clarke from Dead Space
  • Tony Hawk from Tony Hawk
  • Batman

And for the final boss:

  • Robin
  • A Gran Turismo car
  • All of the Sony advertising team

So what characters would you like to see in PSASBR? Would DLC characters hurt the game by dividing consumers? Would the inclusion of more cute characters stop you from picking it up? Let us know in the comments below and make sure to vote for us to star in PSASBR by clicking Seb and Dan.