PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale Round 2 DLC Impressions

By Spencer Pressly on April 4, 2013, 5:51PM EDT

The second wave of DLC for All Stars includes Isaac Clarke (Dead Space), Zeus (God of War), and a new stage called The Graveyard. This time both characters are no longer free and cost $4.99 each, that is unless you bought God of War: Ascension. The new stage is still free to play online, but will cost you $1.99 and this time there is no trophies for any of the new content which is a shame. Still the big question remains, is any of this DLC worth buying for fans who still play All Stars?

First off if you stopped playing because you thought the game's characters were to unbalanced, there is some good and bad news. The good news is a recent patch gave over 100 changes to every character and makes the game feel much more balanced than ever before. The bad news is that Isaac and Zeus are extremely overpowered for being the two newest editions. They have still not been patch almost a month after release, but hopefully this will change in the near future.

Lets start off by talking about Isaac, he plays very similar to Drake with mid to short range combat at his disposal. His moves are very different as you have many guns to attack with as well as using you kinesis to slow enemies down. Whenever he attacks with something that is not his guns, Isaac is very slow, but powerful attacks that build AP quickly. These do not have any armor so timing is key when using him.

Isaac's supers are flashy to say to least, but with a lot of his other attacks reply heavily on timing. For his level 1 super he will shoot out a shot of kinesis to stun whoever is in front of his and then you can control where to send your shot that is an instant KO. This helps in case the kinesis attack misses so you can land a KO. Level 2 is similar to Evil Cole's level 2 and has Isaac emitting a large field of energy that will KO anyone who is near by. The level 3 super has to be on of the most fun to do in the game and turns the stage into a game of asteroids. Your opponents can slowly float in space as you get a few seconds to shoot as many players as possible. This normally is around 3-5 depending on your skill.

Isaac is a surprisingly well rounded character who can hold his own a somewhat slow character with powerful moves to compensate. His different guns can make all sorts of combos into each other and this is normally helped with a focus on kinesis attacks. Undeniably his most useful attack is his famous plasma pistol that lets you move and shoot over and over. You can easily trap enemies in a corner doing this, but getting out feels impossible most time and fighting him can be annoying if people span. Still with a few tweaks he could be one of the more complicated, but fun characters to play.

On the exact opposite end of complicated is Zeus and this one had fans scratching their heads why he was even included. Besides being another character from God of War to play as, he is simply to strong for his own good. He can charge all of his attacks to make them more powerful, but to make this fair he is very slow. This doesn't make it fair thought because Zeus has crazy strong armor when charging up attacks that make stopping him nearly impossible. Zeus is very similar to how Big Daddy plays with strong short ranged attacks, but his mid range attacks are just as deadly and very spam friendly.

Super thankfully do not do anything to ridiculously overpowered that is besides his level 3, but we will get to that later. Zeus' level 1 is a simple step forward with a large area of effect to KO anyone in the middle. This attack is easy to dodge and you need to be really good at guess where your opponent will be to use it well. Level 2 is very different and lets Zeus glide around the stage for a certain amount of time before he releases a burst of lightning. This takes the level 1 super and makes avoiding it much more of challenge. Level 3 is where things get extremely tricky as Zeus increases in size greatly and is behind the stage. This is where the game is turned into a round of guess what attack Zeus picks. If you are quick enough you can dodge most of the attacks, but the super last so long it is hard not to die at least one. Th level 3 super can get around 5-6 without much effort at all.

While Isaac was overpowered, but took some skill to use. Zeus feel like a joke character similar to Seth from Street Fighter IV. He takes zero skill to use and the amount of AP you can build with him in such a short amount of time is astounding. Hopefully he will get heavily nerfed as he is without a doubt the cheapest character in the game at the time of this writing. Still with all of that said, it is a blast wiping people away playing as him.

The latest stage is a perfect bit of nostalgia overload for any long time PlayStation fans and people who keep up to date with all the indie PSN titles released. The Graveyard starts off as a stage from the classic series MediEvil and quickly adds elements from the indie hit The Unfinished Swan that released last year. The stage is special as it is the second stage after the Rival Arena to not have any environmental hazards for you to look out for. While that seems like a negative it never feel lacking while playing it.

After a certain point in the match, the stage will go completely white as you are still fighting. Black balls of paint will fall onto the stage revealing new platforms and as the stage switches from normal to white the added platforms stay. Also as a fun Easter egg certain characters will actually affect what a very familiar gargoyle says to you as you as you play and is a great nod to playing MediEvil back in the early Playstation days.

Now assuming you didn't buy God of War: Ascension, the question still remains if you should buy this latest DLC for All Stars. If you are the kind of person who just likes to have a complete roster you will not be feeling to disappointing buying the two new characters. Still for everyone else out there, if you aren't a die hard fans of these character you should pass. The Graveyard DLC is also just depending on how often you play offline since it is free in online play. If you want to see more content it is nice to show your support and $1.99 is not anything to complain about. For anyone looking for a nice bundle out there, you can get both characters and the new stage for only $9.99.

Even thought this latest addition of content of characters was a bit more miss than hit, it is nice to see Santa Monica Studios support this great fighting game. Even if the only new character we end up getting added later on only end up being marketing tools to promote other games releasing, we can still hope for classic characters to slip in one day. What characters or stage crossovers do you want to see in the next wave of DLC for All Stars? Let us know in the comments below as well as what you think of the latest DLC.

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