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Microsoft vs. Sony: The Fighting Game
Super Smash Bros. is a never ending source of fun. No matter how many iterations of the series come out, gamers feast upon it with gusto. The idea of being able to fight with your favorite Nintendo character is almost like a dream come true. Could Mario beat Link? How about Bowser against Ganandorf? There is no other game that allows you to see a Pokemon battle against Mr. Game ‘N Watch. People have speculated since Super Smash started how a Sony fighting game or a Microsoft one would be. Since Sony does have more mascots and franchise characters, it could be easy enough to see a Sony fighting game. However, Microsoft is no slouch. They have plenty of people that could be thrown into the mix. A Microsoft vs. Sony fighting game would be too epic in scope to even see released. Not to mention the amount of DLC that would throw people off of getting it. Each platform would try and have as many console exclusive fighters are possible in order to make their version the best. In the end, it would turn out too much like Pokemon where the versions are too different to make an easy decision (unless you just go by color).
With all that said, it is still extremely fun to think of who would be the top stars in a Microsoft vs. Sony fighting game. I’ve gone through as many franchises, series, and popular titles to come up with a dream team list of the prime choices both companies would want in this fairy tale of a game. We’ll start with Microsoft.
Microsoft enter the gaming foray in 2001 to a mediocre start but throughout the Xbox 1’s lifetime it grew better and better. With the 360 to make the first strike in the current generation, Microsoft has seen amazing success in both hardware and software. With that brings new faces and franchises into the mix that could make their top stars the toughest competition to this game. Building a strong roster of muscular men, soldiers of war, and other crazy character archetypes means that Microsoft isn’t kidding around here. They want to show up Sony and they’re throwing their best in the mix.
Gameplay: Stubbs was one of the most fun games on the original Xbox. As a Zombie, Stubbs has access to some of the more unconventional ways of fighting in this game. He can have a move that summons a passerby, bites them, and have a zombie henchman for a few seconds to help distract his enemy. Stubbs can bite his opponent to restore health and possibly cause a status ailment such as slower speed or no regeneration of health. Stubbs may not be the strongest character in any way but his weird moveset and regen could make him a pro’s delight.
Gameplay: As one of the best agents on Earth, Joanna has a lot of stealthy skills at her disposal that earned her the “Perfect Dark” form. In normal form, Joanna can use martial arts and a bevy of weapons at her disposal. Each weapon she has succumbs to a reload sequence after using it so much which is shown with an ammo bar near her life. When Joanna has enough in her special bar, she transforms into her Perfect Dark form. In this form, she does extra damage, stop enemy health regen due to her attacks, and can dodge attacks 50% of the time even if they would normally hit her. Since this can be very useful, this form is limited to a very short timer and Joanna can only use the Skedar Mauler pistol (only available in this form).
Gameplay: I’d have picked Shepard but Garrus needs some spotlight. Garrus is known to be a long ranged sharpshooter so he is better off in a distance. If the player is far enough away from the enemy, Garrus switches to Sniper mode (evidenced by his change in stance). In Sniper mode, Garrus gains access to his trusty long range weapon and deals high damage or slows his opponent down depending on where he hits them. In close quarters Garrus switches to Rifle mode and uses his limited CQC skills combined with rifle shots. With both stances, Garrus has access to three different ammo types: Warp, Incendiary, and Cyro. These ammo types change Garrus’ attacks. Warp stop health regen for a few seconds. Incendiary will slowly chip away health for a few seconds. Cyro will slow down opponents and coupled with the low-hitting Sniper shot will give Garrus a lot of time in Sniper mode depending on striking distance. Each ammo type can be used once every round and has an ammo box shown near his health.
Gameplay: The kings of Rapture come out a-blazing here with the big drill and a couple of plasmids. Big Daddy is slow, very slow however his attacks hit hard and can be augmented with plasmids. His drill is the focus here as using that can be all the difference in a comeback match. Every attack with the drill takes time to ramp up so they are slow and dangerous to use. Luckily, the Big Daddy is so large that it takes a combo of 3+ moves to interrupt his attacks and push him back. That may seem crazy but every attack the opponent does is at normal strength so they aren’t hampered too much. The Big Daddy is meant to take up room anyways. Aside from the drill, the Big Daddy has access to the Insect Swarm, Winter Blast, and Electro Bolt plasmids. The Big Daddy can use these plasmids whenever he wants except that the Insect Swarm requires some distance and cannot be used close to the enemy. Insect Swarm is the perfect move to use against someone too afraid to get close to the Big Daddy. The Swarm attaches to a far away opponent and chips health away. Winter Blast is a good move to use up close as it hampers jump height of an opponent and slows them down a little bit. Electro Bolt is a damage dealer at mid-to-close range.
Gameplay: Obviously we’re going to see the Energy Sword a lot here. The Arbiter is extremely fast and deadly but his weakness is his health bar. He doesn’t have a lot of health so in order to survive The Arbiter is granted dodge rolls. At any time The Arbiter can roll forward of backwards while sacrificing health regen for a couple seconds. These rolls can mean life or death and can even be used to cancel combos or specials. Now, onto the sword. The Energy Sword has a bar underneath The Arbiter’s health that signify a cooldown period. If you get to hasty with the sword, it will disappear for a short time and you’ll be left with punches and kicks. Normal strikes with the sword chip away at the cooldown bar slowly but high number combos or special attacks will eat at it.
Gameplay: Okay, we’ve seen Mr. West in a few fighting games now but I know I’d have my head ripped off by Jason if I didn’t include him. Frank West is a journalism who has covered wars. So he can match up pretty well here. His camera and weapons are his specialties here. When Frank uses his camera, a random effect will happen. Erotica effect will speed up Frank’s movements which are usually a bit slower than normal (his bum leg). Brutality effect will up his attack damage (not specials). While Drama effect will increase special attack damage. There is also a rare Outtake effect that will short the camera out damaging Frank a bit while he throws it away (possibly hitting the enemy for a bit more damage than Frank takes). If this effect occurs, the camera is lost for the rest of the round. Frank also has access to a baseball bat with nails, the Mega Buster, and a chainsaw.
Gameplay: Oh I can see right now this would be my main. Malak is an extremely powerful Dark Lord of the Sith and he brings the dark side with him. Malak has a high amount of HP thanks to his Force Shield but once that is down, he can be brought down pretty easily. The shield is represented by an colored bar that sits over the health bar. Special attacks can hurt the shield moreso than normals and combos. Malak has access to a range of Force attacks such as Force Lighting, Force Choke, Force Charge, and Ground Fissure. Lighting will strike the enemy for damage while slowing their health regen. Choke damages the enemy and allow 1-2 seconds to set up a combo. Charge will throw Malak forward and deal some damage if you contact the enemy. Ground Fissure throws the force into the ground throwing the enemy upwards and dealing some damage.
Gameplay: The Dragon Sword master arrives with electric fast attacks. Ryu is crazy fast but can’t stand up to massive damage. Equipped with the Dragon Sword, shurikens, and Ninpo Ryu is a deadly force as soon as you keep him safe. The Ninpo he has is the Whirlwind which is a great setup for aerial combos.
Gameplay: Marcus has a good enough of HP but has a drawback due to it. If Marcus is struck by a tag team special or a 25+ hit combo, he is brought down for five seconds. During those five seconds, he has increased defense but is susceptible to all attacks. Normal attacks, low hit combos, and individual specials will not bring Marcus into this state. Aside from that, Marcus can roadie run across the stage bringing him close or as far away as he wants but if he goes over his stamina limit he allows the enemy a chance to bring him down using easier methods. Marcus’ Lancer can be used with ranged attacks and close ones (bullets far away and chainsaw up close). He also has access to a Gnasher Shotgun for close attacks, and the Bolo Grenade for area damage. Marcus can be hard to use but pro’s can string together his weapon attacks and roadie runs for effective use.
Gameplay: We’ve been dying to use this guy in a fight for a long time now. Chief uses guns for ranges and mid damage and their stocks for bashing their skulls in. Chief can use Cortana to make either the high, mid, or low sections of an enemy more vulnerable to his attacks due to her scanning them. Chief has access to the Battle Rifle, Brute Shot, and the Gravity Hammer. The Battle Rifle does moderate damage and can be used anywhere. The Brute Shot must be used at a distance as its shots arc and they deal good damage on impact or moderate damage with area effect. The Gravity Hammer deals nice damage and can set up the opponent for aerial combos or special attacks that direct upwards.
Sony is a veteran in the gaming front with many franchises and series under their belt. That means they have many generals and familiar faces on this battlefield. While Sony may have been tripped up a bit this current generation, their armies are always ready for battle. They may not be as tough as some of the heavy hitters Microsoft brought in tow, but they got it where it counts – mechanics.
Gameplay: Needles Kane, the icon of the Twisted Metal franchise decided to step out of the vehicle for a moment and led his vicious tendencies to the fight. Needles is slow but his tough hide grants him a lot of HP. He is an expert with his various melee weapons such as the crowbar, sledgehammer, and whipping chain. The chain only has two attacks depending on where you strike. You can sweep with it for low damage or whip it for mid damage. The sledge comes to work for high hits while the crowbar can be used for any type of hit and has the most combos. Sweet Tooth can be daunting to bring down and he will goad you on but he isn’t as tough as say Big Daddy.
Gameplay: The Superhero of Sony arrives with his Amp weapon and tons of electricity. Cole can use his Amp up close to deliver shocking moves that can leave health regen slow down for a few seconds. His electricity deals varying damage and can spread if any tag team partners come out for assists. Cole access to his normal bolts he dishes out, Electric Drain, Shock Grenades, and the Gigawatt Blades. All of these moves use up Energy which is shown using the iconic energy bar seen from inFamous. Cole can replenish this bar by using combos and non-energy consuming specials (such as his Amp special). The Blades are a high damaging melee attack that can strung together with the Amp (uses a lot of energy). Electric Drain can be used to steal health away and replenish your red health. It cannot be used to increase health you have permanently lost for the round (uses all of your energy). The Shock Grenade spread on the ground or sticks to an opponent. The amount of grenades changes with how much energy you have (1 grenade for every 2 energy). You cannot control the amount of grenades that come out so the degree of energy that is consumed can be detrimental. Cole’s normal electric bolts do not consume energy.
Gameplay: The pure brawler in the game comes with a few Limit Breaks at her disposal. Every attack Tifa does fills up her Limit Break meter. This fills up pretty fast as these moves are not meant to be specials. Through Limit Breaks, Tifa can utilize combos that empty into a high damaging attack such as Somersault, Dolphin Blow, or Beat Rush. Tifa’s normals can be fast and chained into combos fast. Her low HP leaves her a quick throwaway, though.
Gameplay: Sly is a fan favorite and with a new game coming up it is only right to see him featured here. As the master thief, Sly has access to his family’s cane and a few of his friends’ weapons. The Shock Pistol, crossbow, and the Binocucoms which can stun an enemy for two seconds. The shock pistol can slow down health regen while the crossbow is a great way to get damage in from afar. Sly’s cane can be changed into a few different styles which either promote damage, speed, or defense. Sly is a very versatile character but has no advantage or disadvantage with health.
Gameplay: Jak has two forms: his normal state and Dark Jak. In his normal state, Jak generates Eco with every attack and when the bar fills up he can tranform into Dark Jak. Dark Jak’ can do more damage and while he is active, the enemy cannot regenerate health due to seeing this hideous form. Dark Jak also has access to powers. He can use Dark Bomb to fill the ground around him with damaging energy, Dark Strike which deals massive damage if it can connect, or Dark Blast where Jak shoots out multiple bolts of Eco that the enemy can dodge (the more hits, however, the more the damage piles up). In his normal state, Jak has access to melee attacks, the gunstaff, and the customizable Morph Gun. Normal Jak can adapt mods to the Morph Gun sort of like how Garrus uses ammo types. The Red Mod increases damage with the Morph Gun while the Blue Mod increases its firing rate as a lower attack damage.
Gameplay: Ratchet is a master of all weapons and is primarily a ranged powerhouse but he can hold his own in melee thanks to his Omni-Wrench. In his arsenal, Ratchet can use RYNO, Fusion Bomb, and the Plasma Storm. The Fusion Bomb leaves particles in the air if it comes in contact with the enemy which will damage tag team partners who come in for an assist. The Plasma Storm sends an orb that cruises low across the stage. If the enemy comes in contact with the orb, they will sustain good damage and quick stun.
Gameplay: Drake is a hard character to create a moveset for. He is a sloppy Kirk-like melee fighter with a damn good aim in a firefight. As such, Drake’s melee normals and combos are full of wild punches and cheap shots. Drake will do anything for an advantage. He can throw out gold coins to distract his enemy and toss out frag grenades that have a small area effect. He of course has access to a pistol and rifle for ranged effect. His cheap shots can include effects like slow health regen, slower speed, or periodic chip damage.
Gamplay: Although Snake has gone multi-platform before, the PlayStation banner is the only place to find his complete saga. Snake also has experience in Super Smash Bros. and has come prepared. Armed to a Nikita missile launcher, FAMAS rifle, his trusty USP handgun, and expert CQC fighting skills Snake is a danger at any range. He can even utilize tools such as the Stealth generator and explicit magazines to gain advantages over opponents. The stealth only lasts for a few seconds but can give Snake the room he needs gain tactical range. Snake is limited to three Nikita missles, one clip of FAMAS ammo, and unlimited bullets with the USP. Ocaton rarely flies overhead and drops more missiles or FAMAS clips.
Gameplay: A favorite from Marvel vs. Capcom 3, Dante returns to show his love for Sony. Using his long reaching sword, Ebony and Ivory pistols, and crazy jumps Dante is fast and durable making him one of the most dangerous characters in the game. Dante has a slow filling bar which when filled can be used to transform into his Devil Trigger mode which improves his weapons and speed but he’ll slowly lose health over the time. Devil Trigger can be cancelled at any time, which means players can use it to gain advantage even when they aren’t winning the round.
Gameplay: Kratos is the ultimate Sony general and with the best war experience. Armed with his chained Blades of Chaos, the Nemean Cestus, and the Claws of Hades Kratos can overpower any opponent and stand with the tough guys. The Blades of Chaos give Kratos a crazy ranged melee weapon that can chained into a lot of combos. The Nemean Cestus can launch an enemy in the air after dealing great damage. The Claws of Hades can be equipped and give Kratos a new set of melee combos but sacrifices the range the Blades give.
The war between the console juggernauts has only just begun. With plenty of 3rd party “dogs of war” that can be mercenaries, the rosters can only grow from here. Did I miss some of your favorites? Or perhaps include someone you think should be left out? Let me know in the comments section and I’ll release a full roster based upon my suggestions and what the players wants.