Omar Kendall, director of PlayStation All Stars Battle Royale, was demonstrating the newly revealed characters as well as some new stages today. The new characters for the four-player beat ‘em up have been rumoured before but were confirmed last night at Sony’s Media Preview to be Sackboy from LittleBigPlanet, Dante from Devil May Cry (the new Dante), Spike from Ape Escape and Ratchet (and Clank) from Ratchet and Clank.
Two big features were detailed by Kendall, namely Cross Buy and Cross Play. He said what they are trying to achieve is a “platform agnostic” game, that is that the experience between the PS3 and the Vita is completely seamless and the same no matter which device you play on. Cross Buy means if you buy the PS3 game you get the Vita game and if you buy the Vita game you get the PS3 game. Save files are shared – there is only one between the two platforms, which means if you unlock content on one device it is unlocked on the other, as if it was the same device. If you buy the PS3 disc at retail you will need to download the Vita version using some sort of download code included.
The Cross Play feature means you can play the game on the Vita against players on the PS3, both online and offline.
Two new levels were demonstrated today with the four new characters. One is Alden’s Tower from inFamous, and the other Stow Aways from the famous aeroplane scene in Uncharted 3. Each level has a mashup with another Sony-related IP, with Alden’s Tower featuring Sly Cooper and Stow Aways featuring Songbirds from Bioshock. The Alden’s Tower level starts at the bottom and moves upwards, which means players not only need to be careful of each other but also of going off the screen and dying in that way. Stow Aways starts inside the hold of the plane at very close quarters, but soon the bay door opens and you’re fighting on the luggage that’s trailing behind the plane as the plane starts burning up and Songbirds start flying passed and interfering with your beatings.
Each character has two dozen different moves in their arsenal, excluding their super. The idea of the game is fight to fill up your super gauge. Once it’s full you can unleash a super attack, which is the only way to get a kill. If you fill your gauge up three times you can unleash an ultra attack. Spike’s ultra attack was demonstrated and calls down a beam from a satellite which kills all three other players in one go. Your score for the round is your kills minus your deaths, so timing when you use your supers is really important (note that supers can’t be countered other than with a super).
Sackboy was demonstrated as a ranged character, where all his attacks involve using items such as traps or mines. His second level super is a bunch of hot rocks which you can drop on other players. Ratchet’s one super attack releases Crank who can run around and kill players in one punch.
The two other demonstrated stages have already been seen – Parappa’s Dojo and Dreamscape from LittleBigPlanet. All the stages have interesting events happening while you’re fighting out your timed battle. In addition to timed battles there are stock battles (ie each player has a certain number of lives) and kill count battles.
PlayStation All Stars Battle Royale is available on PS3 and Vita (both at once, with one purchase) in November this year.
Note: the screenshots in this post are from the Vita version of the game.