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Infinite Crisis: The Preview

I might as well start off this preview by biasing myself: I just could be classified as a marvelite. Oh, don’t get me wrong, I started out as a DC fan. I’ve always thought Batman was way cool and the Riddler remains one of my favorite villains ever. However, as I’ve gotten older, I’ve wanted more light-hearted brevity out of the goofy picture books of my youth, and DC just wants to be a depressing slog through drama and grit.

With that in mind, here’s some info on Infinite Crisis, a DC-based MOBA game brought to you by Turbine and WB Games. There’s an X in there somewhere, trust me, so we’ll henceforth call it IXC. It plays very much like LoL or DOTA 2 but some notable exceptions: The game mode, the controls, and the target audience.

For those of you who only play DOTA 2, IXC has a different game mode than the current tower-defense setup. It features capturing and defending five separate points on a circular map. LoL players will recognize that mode as Dominion. This is the only version involved, but the game still in its beta and might build new modes later. An added feature is to be able to use the terrain around you to your benefit. For instance you can take the ability to pick up cars and through them, or just destroy them because they explode.hendrix_flash_action_091

Unfortunately, the controls are a bit lacking. My biggest complaint is that you can’t use the minimap for anything. I might be spoiled by the other games, but I’d like to be able to just path to somewhere by clicking on a spot on the map. This is just a sign, though, among others, that the game is designed to be played without locking the screen onto your character. Some of the champions have across-the-map shots that are hard to aim without moving the screen to point at what you want to hit; the game takes every opportunity to unlock your screen with any button press; and they work to fill every frame with visually-busy designs.

Which brings me to the target audience. This is, what I like to call, a “niche” game. The graphics are so rich and varied that it takes more expensive computers to run smoothly what other games run at less. Aside from that point, I’ve heard rumors that this game is supposed to be bringing the Dominion style of gaming to professional competitions. And let’s not forgot the absolutely nerdy choices for their champions.

Now, the DC Universe is just as varied as the Marvel Universe. But when it came to designing all of their characters, they instantly went into the alternate universe stuff. They have three different Batmans and two different Jokers. I went digging and found that this is, most likely, based off of a DC comic called Infinite Crisis, in which all of these alternate universes join forces to fight each other… or something. This all makes sense to a comic geek, but to the average layman like me this looks like a cynical attempt to have as many popular characters as they can, even if that means reusing those characters to pad out the champion list.hendrix_gaslight_batman_action_052

So, if you like Dominion as your main play-style, play around keeping the screen unlocked, have an above-average computer rig, and are really in to the whole alternate-universes-of-DC thing, then this game was certainly made for you. And who knows, maybe in the future they’ll have enough champs that there will be the novelty of having the Riddler fight the Joker.

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