Video Game: PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale
"Power is an illusion. Absolute power is a seamless illusion."PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale
is a Massive Multiplayer Crossover Mascot Fighter
developed by SuperBot Entertainment, which joins a cast of characters representing Sony Computer Entertainment
's intellectual properties to beat the hell out of each other for Rule of Cool
. To the speculation of many, the game's existence was foreshadowed when Sony launched their wildly successful ''Michael''
ad campaign in the fall of 2011. Initially known by the code name "Title Fight", the game was leaked by the Paul Gale Network
before being officially announced by GameTrailers TV and on the PlayStation Blog on April 26th, 2012.
The game avoids the usual approach to fighting games
to use health
or a life meter
in lieu of a Super Meter which increases when a fighter connects an attack. Filling this meter gives the fighter access to a specialized, instantly killing super attack
, and points are determined by how many of these attacks can connect. If the Super Attacks go unused, players can continue building to an easier to connect Level 2 Super, or even a show-stopping Level 3 Super. By default rules, players score 2 points per kill minus 1 point per death, with standard matches lasting for 3 minutes before declaring a winner; alternate rules include "stock" matches (limited lives
, last player standing wins) and "kills" matches (first player to score a set number of kills wins). The game supports matches of up to 4 players in 3v1, 1v1, 2v2, or free-for-all.
Many of the characters' fighting styles and techniques/abilities closely mirror or at least maintain the flavor of how they would play inside their own series, and nearly the entire cast has their most iconic voice actors reprising their roles
. Stage interaction and items play a part in game-play, with many of them damaging built AP or causing a Standard Status Effect
. Stages are notable for mashing up at least two franchises, with one universe hosting the battle while the other invades, while the items frequently feature some of the more iconic Playstation props/weapons. The game's story has the Anthropomorphic Personification
of the PlayStation
's power bringing the fighters and their worlds together for various reasons
The game was released in North America on November 20th, 2012 to reasonably favorable reviews. The official website is here
and the wiki
On February 4, 2013, it was announced that Sony has "amicably" ended its relationship with SuperBot Entertainment, passing future content development of the game off to parent developer Sony Santa Monica Studios. Sony Santa Monica have said that there are no plans to make more DLC, but in August of 2013 would go on to promise a final balance patch
to fix all the game's outstanding competitive issues. Over a year after the game's apparent abandonment, this patch containing over 100 changes would arrive on April 8, 2014
to the fanbase's delight.1st-Party Characters
:Series represented without stages, items or playable characters
- Carnival Island (Magic Pixel Games)
- Escape Plan (Fun Bits Interactivenote )
Can you survive the mind-melting list of tropes?
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- Alden's Tower: inFAMOUS invaded by Sly Cooper
- Black Rock Stadium: Twisted Metal invaded by Jak And Daxter
- Boss Arena: PlayStation All Stars (Arcade Mode only; invaded by several franchises)
- Columbia: Bioshock Infinite invaded by Twisted Metal
- Dojo: PaRappa the Rapper invaded by Killzone
- Dreamscape: LittleBigPlanet invaded by Buzz!
- Fearless: Heavenly Sword invaded by Wipeout (DLC)
- Franzea: Loco Roco invaded by Metal Gear
- Hades: God of War invaded by Patapon
- Invasion: Killzone invaded by Ape Escape
- Metropolis: Ratchet & Clank invaded by God Of War
- Paris: Sly Cooper invaded by LittleBigPlanet
- Rival Arena: PlayStation All Stars
- San Francisco: Resistance invaded by Ratchet & Clank
- Sandover Village: Jak and Daxter invaded by Hot Shots Golf
- Stowaways: Uncharted invaded by BioShock Infinite
- The Graveyard: MediEvil invaded by The Unfinished Swan (DLC)
- Time Station: Ape Escape invaded by several represented franchises (primarily Resistance)
- Ascended Extra: Polygon Man went from being an advertising mascot to the Final Boss.
- Absurdly Cool City: Metropolis, until the Hydra shows up.
- All The Worlds Are A Stage: The Boss Arena calls back a number of the previous levels' hazards for the sake of making a non-predictable challenge.
- Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: The PaRappa level features the MAWLR from Killzone, a Humongous Spider Mecha in the background, firing missiles at the players (the mecha can be seen outside the dojo window before the walls actually come down). Like in the Dojo level of PaRappa The Rapper, Chop Chop Master Onion will later reappear as a giant in the background in order to fight the mech. The Time Station has a Satan Chimera break through the portal, lobbing acid spit on the floor.
- Background Music: As per the course for each stage. For example, Nate's Theme will play on Stowaways, the Precursor Legacy's theme in Sandover Village, etc.
- Background Music Override: Goes hand in hand with the crossover stages. On Hades, the Patapon will override the stage's theme with their own jingle while The End Begins plays when the Hydra invades Metropolis.
- Battle in the Rain: The latter part of the Metropolis level, after the Hydra appears.
- Big Boo's Haunt: The Graveyard.
- Bullet Hell: The Sandover Village/19th Hole stage becomes this later on... with golf balls.
- Color Contrast: A pretty major part of The Unfinished Swan's aesthetic.
- The Computer Shall Taunt You:
- A CPU character does this often when all of the characters but them are killed.
- Standard fare for MediEvil's Gargoyles in the Graveyard, and a part of Buzz's shtick in Dreamscape (more on him in the minions sections)
- Everything Trying to Kill You: The stages will feature many environmental hazards, such as Sandover Village, which has a giant Lurker Shark swimming beneath the stage who will eat players too slow to get back to the main platform. The Metropolis stage has the Hydra, which will periodically attack the players as well. In the Dojo stage, a Helghast MAWLR will open fire on Master Onion's dojo, and may end up hitting the fighters. The players may get involved in the crossfire between the Songbird/Vox Populi fight on Stowaways.
- Exploding Barrels: The Invasion stage has several that drop AP when destroyed.
- Fixed Floor Fighting: The All-Stars Arena and a few of the practice mode stages.
- Free Floor Fighting: The Dreamscape level is constantly being built, adding extra platforms and occasionally lowering ground. This is just one example.
- Alden's Tower is the greatest example, forcing the players to climb the stage periodically.
- Funny Background Event: Since the stages will focus on one "host" stage being invaded by another PlayStation world, this will happen frequently. In Sandover Village, aboard the Rift Rider, Samos and Keira (along with much of the local scenery) get sucked into a Rift Gate before a number of Hot Shots Golfers, their buggies, equipment, and a sign saying "19th Hole" start pouring out of it. Later on, in the Metropolis stage, Captain Qwark, having survived the Hydra's onslaught, ends up becoming an unlikely Head Pet, riding away atop the creature as the match ends. In the Dojo level, Chop Chop Master Onion is attempting his usual training regiment and wondering why the players are more interested in fighting instead of following his words (before he has to go deal with the pressing matter of the MAWLR rampaging outside).
- Giant Enemy Crab: Not the one you were thinking of. One of the crab bosses from Patapon is just another of the Playstation oddities summoned by Specter in the Time Station.
- Gimmick Level: Alden's Tower is the game's only Auto-Scrolling Level, and it forces a gameplay style not all the characters are equipped for.
- Gravity Screw: The Time Station, occasionally.
- Hailfire Peaks: Every stage will smoosh together environments from completely different games for unique mash-ups (which includes mash-ups remixing the original game's music). In terms of story-justification, the developers describe the PlayStation locales as being invaded by other universes.
- Harping On About Harpies: You can find one from God of War carrying a monkey around in the Time Station.
- High-Altitude Battle: Stowaways and Alden's Tower, eventually.
- Hostile Stage Takeover: It's kind of the point of the invading universes.
- Inexplicable Treasure Chests: God of War's Red Orb chests appear in Metropolis.
- Interesting Situation Duel: One level has Hades trying to attack the players while fending off a band of invading Patapon warriors.
- The Dreamscape level actually manages to have a duel BETWEEN BUZZ AND THE POPIT MENU! It starts out when the Popit Menu deletes the platform Buzz is standing on, causing him to fall. When he rises back up again, he uses a remote control to electrocute the Popit Menu. Seconds before the match ends, the Popit Menu actually deletes Buzz himself from the stage.
- Have you ever wanted to see Metal Gear RAY get crushed by Loco Rocos? Probably not, but there you go.
- Laugh Track: The Buzz portion of Dreamscape has one.
- Military Mashup Machine: Metal Gear RAY.
- Nostalgia Level: Plenty.
- Our Zombies Are Different: The ones in the Graveyard level mainly shamble about harmlessly and will even explode into a shower of AP.
- Planet Heck/To Hell and Back: Hades, sort of (Tartarus would be more accurately compared to hell).
- Pop Quiz: Buzz will quiz the players with random PlayStation trivia in the Dreamscape level, with incorrect answers being punished by AP-Draining pie thrown from off-screen. The four answers are attached to a random platform and the players have to be standing with their feet firmly planeted on that platform, turning this into something of a king-of-the-hill skirmish.
- Remilitarized Zone: Helghan, seen in Invasion.
- Rise to the Challenge: Alden's Tower.
- Rock Beats Laser: Chop Chop Master Onion defeats the MAWLR by giving it a karate chop, while Metal Gear Ray gets Goomba Stomped by the Loco Rocos.
- Sigil Spam: The Boss/Rival Arena has the Playstation's distinctive Crosses, Triangles, Squares, and Circles filling the background in flowing streams of All-Star Power.
- Space Zone: The later half of San Francisco.
- Standard Status Effects: Some of the stage hazards mimic status effects pretty closely. The Hypersonic Brainwave Scrambler in San Francisco mainly immobilizes the players and the poison spit by the Satan Chimera steadily drains AP (like any video game poison).
- Stuff Blowing Up: To be expected from a Twisted Metal level like Black Rock Stadium. The Turbo Cannons which show up later rain explosive fire later on.
- Zeppelins from Another World: Flying in the background of Metropolis and in the later section of Stowaways.
- Ape Escape: Killer Bees
- BioShock Infinite: Murder of Crows
- God Of War: Spear of Destiny, Boots of Hermes, Medusa's Gaze (patched into the game post-release)
- Killzone: BDL-23 Dohvat Laser Designator
- LittleBigPlanet: Sackbot
- ModNation Racers: Sonic Rift
- Patapon: Great Mighty Scythe
- Ratchet & Clank: Fusion Bomb, Nanotech Crate, Razor Claws
- Resistance: Hedgehog Grenade
- Rise of the Kasai: Baumusu's Axe
- Starhawk: LR-3 Railgun
- Twisted Metal: Freeze Missile
- Uncharted: RPG-7, Sturgeon
- Wipeout: Gravity Shield, Leech Beam
- An Axe to Grind: Baumusu's Axe, which is utilized as a Spin Attack.
- Attack Drone: The Killer Bees fire weak lasers to help lengthen combos. Or shortens them, depending on your point of view (Dante-players in particular don't seem to avoid them).
- Beehive Barrier: The Gravity Shield from Wipeout is a usable item. It'll make your character Immune to Flinching for up to 200 AP, and will even protect against an offending Super.
- BFG: The always-powerful RPG-7 from Uncharted appears as a usable item. It holds 3 shots, like in its home series (though the reload doesn't seem especially long).
- Blade on a Stick: The Spear of Destiny from God of War is a usable melee item.
- Crate Expectations: Occasionally, Nanotech glass crates from Ratchet & Clank: Going Commando (which usually function as a Heart Container) will appear on the screen, giving away AP when broken.
- Creepy Crows: The Murder of Crows, which confuses the victim's controls while steadily chipping away AP.
- Cute Machines: The Sackbot has heart-shaped eyes and will hop around trying to hug one of the players besides the one who threw it, slowing them down substantially.
- Dividing By Zero: Picking up a second Boots of Hermes just deletes the one you’re already wearing (this presumably applies to every other passively-held item). So no Super Speed mode, unfortunately.
- Edible Bludgeon / Shamu Fu: The Sturgeon from Uncharted.
- Harmless Freezing: The Freeze Missile from Twisted Metal is a usable item. It doesn't deplete AP, but it comes with a freezing effect that slows anyone hit with it to a crawl.
- Item Get: Each character has a special line of dialogue for picking up an item.
- Kill Sat: The Dohvat Laser Designator looks quite a bit like this, but it actually marks an area for artillery fire.
- Laser Blade: The Razor Claws from Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools Of Destruction can be picked up.
- Life Drain: The Leech Beam, true to its name, can suck AP away from anyone the user gets close to. Most players found it annoying enough to declare it worthy of Epic Item status, and so patch 1.12 changed its drain-rate to 100 AP at the most over 140.
- One-Hit Kill: Medusa's Gaze, the only item of its kind that can do this. Like in God of War, excessive mashing can save the victim before they're crushed to dust.
- Power Glows: Epic items, the strongest items of them all, are signified by their taking several seconds to appear, in which they're obscured by a glowing cloud of purple vapor.
- Sinister Scythe: The Great Mighty Scythe can send powerful Tornadoes which do massive AP-Damage when used in the air, and leave victims in a confused daze. On the ground, one swipe causes any of four random status effects, all indicated by the scythe's color.
- Blue = freeze
- Purple = confusion
- Green = float (sort of like Jak's Mass Inverter)
- Yellow = slow (much like Drake's Tranquilizer Dart Gun)
- Sprint Shoes: The Boots of Hermes from God of War are a usable item, making even the slowest characters extremely quick. It also allows for a Hermes Dash by hitting the item button while holding left or right on the D-pad.
- Standard Status Effects: Items which don't directly damage AP on hit will often cause such an effect. They include:
- Poison/Bleed: The Murder of Crows and Sackbot chip away at the AP of their victims.
- Paralysis: The Sonic Rift, though nearly any attack using electricity can do this as well.
- Freeze: The Freeze Missile even slows falling to a crawl.
- Petrification: Medusa's Gaze, scarily.
- Meta-Effect: The Murder of Crows can also reverse the victim's controls.
- Silence: The Hedgehog Grenade and LR-3 Railgun prevent the victim from using their Super moves.
- Slow: The Sackbot works like a massive weight when it hugs a player, turning whatever maneuverability they had into a non-issue until they can shake the little annoyance off.
- Taken for Granite: Medusa's Gaze, combined with Literally Shattered Lives (in which even stage hazards become deadly) for a One-Hit Kill.
- Throw The Mook At Them: The Sackbot's utility.
- Trick Bomb: The Hedgehog Grenade from Resistance is a usable item. Originally, it spreads across a wide area by throwing spikes in every direction, potentially pinning the corpses of its victims to nearby walls. Here, it simply gives them a time-out from using a Super.
- Absurdly High Level Cap: Each character's level can go up to 999. The final unlockable for each character is at level 300.
- Achievement System: The game (in addition to the PS3 Trophy system) allows the player to select a variety of icons and backgrounds for their in-game profile and customize each character's intro/outro lines or Minion, which are unlocked primarily by accumulating enough points with specific characters (a few others are purchasable DLC).
- The All-Seeing A.I.: There’s a pretty good chance that if you try to use your Countering abilities on a computer opponent, that they’ll decide to attack just as your counter is ending.
- Anti-Air: Since the game is more air-based than most fighters, most of the characters have at least one answer to opponents approaching from above.
- Bribing Your Way to Victory: Almost definitely completely by accident unlike most examples, but Kat and Isaac Clarke, each available in one of the two character DLC packs, are widely considered to be the game's S-Tiers.
- Bring It: Just about all the taunts are this essentially.
- Brutal Bonus Level: The combat trials, while necessary for a few obscure goals, can otherwise be avoided (it could be argued that some of them provide perspective on how to properly use a character). The later ones on All-Star difficulty can be terrifying.
- One exhausting series of trials forces the player to fight a mirror match against an opponent with an unlimited Super Meter. The goal is to dodge the entire Level 3 Super, doing so 3 times on All-Star difficulty.
- Charged Attack: Relatively common among the roster. Originally it was Spike who made the most use of it until Zeus came along, who can charge literally every single attack at his disposal.
- Combos: Being held as a distinctive characteristic of the game to distance it from Smash (whose combos are created by the competitive players, rather than partially designed by the developers) by instead following the Marvel vs. Capcom philosophy of combo-stringing (though the combos in PSASBR will be comparatively less lengthy than a standard MvC combo).
- Thanks to the 24+ move-set per character, the game will allow for a vast number of unique, character-specific combos. Dante and Raiden, however, take a more traditional approach to combos, thanks in no small part to Dante's last appearance. This is because of their unique magic series (read: a combo string for fighting games, like Light to Medium to Heavy in Marvel Vs. Capcom) for combos.
- Also, unlike Smash, this game has no directional influence (read: an advanced Smash technique that allows the player being attacked to alter the direction and intensity of his knockback), nor damage percentage (a variable in Smash that affects knock-back, and therefore, combo consistency), so the combat of this game is truly much more like traditional fighters' than Smash's.
- Combo Breaker: A mechanic similar to Skullgirls' Infinite Prevention System has been implemented. Once a combo has yielded AP-gain past a certain point, the victim will enter an invincible state in which not even Supers can hit them. This was done for balancing reasons and to prevent infinite loops. Gradual Grinders like PaRappa will be able to string very long combos thanks to their low AP-gain, while bruisers like Sweet Tooth will typically have the lowest combo-potential. Most top-level combos are meant to hit the IPS limit, to maximize AP gain.
- Confusion Fu: If you can't be bothered with the combos.
- Counter Attack: Usually mapped to neutral circle, and common for melee-heavy characters to give them an edge inside their specialized range; none of them are completely alike (varying by hit-reaction, space affected, user-reaction, and even whether they can return projectiles). They're used by Kratos, Nariko, Heihachi, Raiden, Dante, and Sly, who instead uses his to stay unpredictable by teleporting around the screen and to protect himself due to his lack of a block or dodge.
- Critical Existence Failure: Characters hit with a Super merely explode into a splash of All-Star Energy and Playstation symbols. This is probably for the best anyway, since many of them can have some particularly grizzly after effects (Radec's Level 2 Super is designed to explode opponents into a red mist, and Raiden's would probably have some pretty visceral results if used accurately).
- Damn You, Muscle Memory: The Vita version, for a lack of L or R2, instead maps Supers to R1, where by comparison the console version has this button as the Item Pick-Up button. Yes, this can become confusing.
- Dash Attack: The game lacks sprinting or quick dash-in options like other fighters, so these are pretty common to make up for it.
- Difficulty Spike: The Combat Trials are innocent enough and most of them are reasonably doable with proper focus and application. Unfortunately, most of them are cut-and-pasted for the entire roster. This can be an issue depending on the character, since trials that are a breeze for one character can be horrific for another. The later trials can become surprisingly nightmarish on the easiest difficulty.
- Essence Drop: AP is treated this way. It was inspired by the red orbs from God of War.
- Finishing Move: Level 3 Supers are extremely easy to land several kills with, and they also prevent the other players from using their own Supers while active. They come in about 4 varieties:
- Super Mode: Kratos, Jak and Daxter, Sweet Tooth, Nariko, Evil Cole, and Kat. These tend to make the player bigger, and their attacks change to usually 3 hugely-effective moves mapped to the three buttons.
- First-person Shooter Mode: Radec, Ratchet and Clank, Sly Cooper, and Cole McGrath. Most of these involve an Unexpected Gameplay Change that turns the entire screen into a shooting gallery.
- Negative Penalty: Nathan Drake, Sackboy, Raiden, and Big Daddy. These basically slow down or impair the other players in some way, but the character's controls remain (mostly) the same.
- Cinematic: PaRappa, Spike, Toro, and Heihachi. These are the lowest-costing Level 3's, and act as Unblockable Always Accurate Smart Bombs, letting them clear the screen but remain limited to 3 kills at a time.
- Unique: Fat Princess' Level 3 is automated like a cinematic, but doesn't guarantee any kills (in exchange, it can potentially get more kills if the other players are slow enough). Sir Dan's Level 3 involves hunting the other players down, but doesn't impair them and in fact limits Dan to just moving. Dante's Level 3 is a hybrid of Super Mode and a Negative Penalty, by its ability to increase his speed while slowing all other players to a crawl for 6 seconds.
- The DLC fighters have pushed this category even harder: Emmett's Level 3 functions normally as a Super Mode, but can be ended to instead perform a carpet-bombing across the stage, with this move's power-output determined by how many kills he got before using it (making it essentially two different Supers). Isaac essentially forces the opponents to play the asteroid in a game of Asteroids, while Zeus is a glorified game of Whack-a-Mole.
- Grapple Move: Has the abnormal placement on the right stick, and is directable in 3 different ways with said right stick (side, up and down as usual). As can be imagined, "Up+Throw" is usually a full launch or some kind of lifting/bouncing motion, "Side+Throw" sends victims flying or rolling away, while "Down+Throw" tends to cause a face-plant; only a few odd cases don't follow this behavior.
- Everyone's grabbing motion is the same for the most part, except Ratchet's allows him to carry his victim around with him using his Suck Cannon (while leaving him very open during said grabbing motion). Kat can grab on both sides of herself while sacrificing range/cool-down for this, while Isaac can catch and return projectiles with his.
- Ground Pound: Exceedingly common across all move-sets, and almost always activated with down + square (they don't necessarily have to hit directly beneath the character either). Some of them even create shockwaves.
- Guide Dang It: The entire cast has a series of variable values which designate how much AP is required for them to pull off any given Super, most of them balanced by ease of use and effectiveness. This is mentioned nowhere in the game, but is brought up in great detail in the official guide.
- Launcher Move: More than likely to be used with up + square, these are handed out like candy to any character planning to fight up close, and always have a useful follow-up somewhere on the control-scheme; others, like Kratos and Dante, can quickly cancel their launchers with jumps to continue combos.
- Limit Break: The game is based around these, as the only way to score points is to hit opponents with one. Each character is given a meter that fills as they pummel their opponent, allowing them to use up to 3 levels of Super moves. The main reason for attacking normally is to build AP to fill that meter. Level 1 Supers are usually brief, affect a small area, and tend to be the easiest to interrupt, Level 2 Supers last longer and can potentially take out multiple opponents over a wide area, while Level 3 Supers will likely annihilate the opposition. SuperBot wants there to be a tactical approach to Supers, such as when to use them or how to counter them. For instance, Level 2 Supers which don't activate instantly or fire some type of projectile tend to transform the user in some way (Raiden, Big Daddy, Fat Princess) or give them a new control-scheme (Nariko, Sly, PaRappa); they aren't immune to other Supers in this state. This means it's possible to waste an opponent's Level 2 Super with a Level 1 if the player has proper timing (there's also the option to dodge by pressing Block + Left Stick). More importantly, tossing out many difficult-to-land Level 1 Supers has been described as the ideal strategy, with Level 3 Supers primarily being Cool, but Impractical. As a for-instance, Toro, Heihachi, and Parappa's Level 3 Supers are Unblockable Always Accurate Smart Bombs, but this limits them to only being able to get 3 kills per use, whereas other Level 3 Supers could potentially get 5 or even 6 (one representative from SuperBot said that with the tools they've given the cast, in the time it took your opponent to build that Level 3 meter, you should've killed them several times over, and if it still reaches that point, you have only yourself to blame).
- Some Supers are specifically made to be situational or require heavy set-up, yet they'll give heavy pay-off at their full potential. Heihachi's Level 1, for instance, is meant to be disguised as a low-key, simple-looking — if somewhat slow — punch that can easily be slipped by or worked into his usual combo-grinding. Meanwhile, Nathan Drake's Level 1 Super leaves a large explosion relative to other Supers, but requires concentration and awareness of your enemy's presence (as not to be interrupted) thanks to the speed at which the propane tank falls. SuperBot has tried to create a balance between risk and reward relative to difficulty or ease of use. Kratos and Fat Princess' Level 1 Supers come out fast but are predictable, while Sweet Tooth's Level 1 is hard to set up, but if used properly alongside his space-controlling gameplay, can work like a faster version of Drake's propane tank. Level 2 Supers tend to have even more wild variations.
- SuperBot made a video showing several ways to escape or defend against a Super, further proving that they can't reasonably be spammed or tossed out without thought.
- Non-Standard Game Over: If you lose against the final boss, you are treated to a cutscene where your character gets turned into one of the minions that you fight during the battle.
- One-Hit Kill: Without Hit Points to deplete or edges of the arena to fall out ofnote , the only way to score a KO (and thus win a match) in this game is to successfully land a Super attack on your opponent. If it connects, it kills, end of story.
- One-Hit Polykill: The intention with most ranged Supers. Sadly not the case with Radec's Level 1, which has no drop-off range but will explode on contact with its first target.
- Padded Sumo Gameplay: The game is heavily based around chaotic, highly offensive, yet mostly ineffectual combat (spread across at least 24 attacks per character). No amount of combos will kill a character, and moves which drain AP are rare (item attacks, environmental hazards, throws, and Sly's invisible strike). Even hazards offer a comparatively small consequence in AP drain, if they lower AP at all (some of them merely stun briefly). Attacks exist specifically to build meter, and built meter remains the same even when a character dies. The game's lack of a health bar can make it seem like this.
- However, the true threat most of these forms of ineffectual combat offer will probably be how much time they waste, since the need to build meter turns standard (timed) matches into something of an arms race of resource-denial much as a fight.
- Screen Shake: Whenever a character is hit with a Super.
- Rocket Tag Gameplay: Due to its lack of a health meter and refusal to count kill-score, the game is a hybrid of this and Padded Sumo Gameplay. Attacks may not deal any damage, but they do help your opponent, giving plenty of incentive to dodge. Since the only way to win is to build AP, players are forced into the fray if they don't want to add to their opponent's score; staying idle or retreating is simply not an option. One distinct design-choice involves score going unrevealed until the timer runs out, meaning players will be less likely to give up if they're losing badly. Even going into overtime will still have all four players appearing instead of just the two players that have tied (hopefully to give the two losers a chance to catch up). The developers have compared the frantic pace of the fighting to a fog-of-war effect in simply trying to figure out what attacks are incoming.
- Timed one on ones are often like this; it is depressingly easy for someone to get an early kill and then simply stall out the match, and since you can't simply find someone else to whale on, you are forced to chase the fleeing opponent, hoping to land enough hits to get a super and praying that you can actually land said super.
- Clockw0rk made an analogy by comparing the opponent's Super to a proper Life Meter; the higher it is, you closer you are to death, almost like in Thrill Kill.
- Secret Character: The game has none.
- However, the DLC characters are actually labelled as "Secret" characters in the game itself, with their portrait in the character select screen being darkened and marked with a padlock. Bonus points that they have a "Press X to Unlock" label, and selecting it sends you to the PS Store where you can buy them.
- Sucking-In Lines: Anyone using a Level 1 or 2 Super will do this beforehand. Exemplified especially well by this (very loud) Toro glitch.
- Sudden Death: Going into Overtime mode causes everyone to earn AP twice as fast. An interesting part of the game's Sudden Death mechanic is that all participating fighters (not just the ones who force Overtime) will participate in the final battle, allowing for come-from-behind victories.
- If the game is still tied after Overtime, the AP rate is multiplied by 3. It can eventually go up to 4.
- Super Mode: Many Supers will transform the character while often giving them a new control scheme, such as Sweet Tooth and Kratos. They'll offer protection from certain Supers as well.
- Super Move Portrait Attack: A subtle example. While the Level 3 Supers usually feature a Transformation Sequence or a Lock and Load Montage, the Level 2 Supers will always pause the action to close in on the user, occasionally striking an Ass Kicking Pose while giving the victims a few milliseconds to comprehend their fate.
- And Your Reward Is Clothes: Real-life example: The pre-order incentive was alternate costumes for every character.
- The in-game alternate outfits are unlocked by leveling the character.
- Alternate Company Equivalent: This should be obvious. Interestingly, this game is being released late in the life-cycle of Sony's third major console generation. Sound familiar?
- One odd aspect of the two games' approach to note is that Smash Bros is Japanese-developed and is primarily focused on ring-outs, while the American-made PSASBR works with flashy supers. Kind of like sumo wrestling as opposed to Professional Wrestling.
- Butt Monkey: If you are playing online and you decide to use a character that you are not used to and also see players with a higher rank expect to get tossed around.
- Cast Herd: Within the story, the roster-members never associate with each other. Outside of it, on the other hand, they're required to be grouped in fours so DLC bundles can be made about them (such as costumes or themes). The descriptions for these can be pretty vague.
- The Bad Dudes Pack: Kratos, Sweet Tooth, Radec, and Evil Cole.
- The Classic Pack: Jak, Ratchet, Spike, and Sly.
- The Heroes Pack: Nathan Drake, Sackboy, Sir Dan, and Good Cole.
- The Fun Pack: PaRappa, Toro, Fat Princess, and Narikonote .
- The Heavy Hitters Pack: Dante, Raiden, Heihachi and Big Daddy.
- Dirty Coward: Arguably anyone who would always rely on kill-confirms.
- Downloadable Content: There's plenty of it available, in the form of new characters, stages, costumes and minions.
- Follow the Leader: Though it is inspired by several past fighting games, including Super Smash Bros., the gameplay is actually very unique. SuperBot actually took feedback from Brawl players invited into the office as well as beta testers via a thread on Smashboards, the hardcore and competitive Smash community website.
- Long Title: A common notion from the public. The game widely goes by the initialism "PSASBR", or as director Omar Kendall suggested, a colloquial abbreviation such as "All-Stars", or "Battle Royale".
- Mickey Mousing: Utilized a bit in the character trailers.
- Product Placement: A number of the characters in the game seem to be here for promotional reasons, especially the 3rd party characters. Big Daddy and the Columbia stage are promoting Bioshock Infinite, the Reboot Dante is promoting Dm C Devil May Cry, young Heihachi is promoting Tekken Tag Tournament 2, and Raiden is promoting Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance. This has now extended to DLC characters, as Isaac Clarke was added shortly after Dead Space 3 came out, and Zeus was added shortly before the release of God of War: Ascension, and you'll get him and Isaac for free if you get that game.
- Production Foreshadowing: Sony's "Love Live Play (Michael)" commercial created quite a bit of buzz over a potential Crossover. Suddenly the ad gains even more impact.
- Pun: The titles earned for completing an online season with enough belt points. Along with a bunch of Shout Outs, they include such witticisms as:
- Real Song Theme Tune: Genesis by Justice is the track used in all but the character-specific trailers.
- The attract trailer uses "Finale" by Madeon. Interestingly, it sounds similar to the main menu theme in the game.
- Tournament Play: Though this game is shown at the press conferences as a party-fighter, SuperBot is making sure it's also viable as a hardcore competitive fighter.
- Items and stage hazards can be turned off optionally, and several battle modes (such as stock and kill limit (a.k.a. reverse-stock)) have been included, to suit hardcore play.
- Along with the in-game online tournament mode, SuperBot confirmed it will regularly support competitive play if there's a community that wants it.
- Wolverine Publicity: Obviously important for any cross over. A few characters on the roster such as Kratos, Nathan Drake and Sackboy have almost always been at the forefront of the game's promotion.
- Adaptational Badass: Effectively the entire cast are in some way more powerful than in their own games; the Big Daddy can use Plasmids, Sly teleports, and Nathan Drake manages to create environment pieces from his home series. Even Kratos has access to some weapons that he's never held all at once.
- Extra points to Fat Princess, who not only didn't fight in her game, but is best known for looking quite immobile!
- Same goes for Sackboy, to some extent.
- There's actually a bit of in-story justification for it: All-Star Power (AP) is implied in the character endings to make the user vastly stronger than they've ever been. It's possible AP started being distributed among the Playstation inhabitants after Polygon Man fused the universes.
- Some characters don't get the nifty abilities they get in their own game to the same power, such as Ratchet. Carrying a truckload of weapons and portable black hole launchers would be too much.
- Art Shift: Each playable character will be rendered in their respectable series' distinctive art style. Even Parappa, who's two-dimensional-ish!
- Also, each character's story mode intro and ending cutscenes are animated in their respective art styles. For example, Parappa's cutscenes look like the Parappa the Rapper anime, while Kat's are told in a 2-D comic book style like in Gravity Rush.
- Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: Several supers increase the character's size, sometimes to screen-filling degrees.
- Badass: Despite not being a playable character, Chop Chop Master Onion without question. The later half of the Dojo stage has a colossal MAWLR stomping around the PaRappa world, yet near the end, he shows up again as a giant and beats it with one hit.
- Badass Boast: Many characters after completing a successful Super.
- Battle Aura/Power Glows: Characters show this when they fill their AP bar or respawn. It bears a striking resemblance to the wavy ribbon that appears on the PlayStation 3's default XMB.
- Battle Intro: Every character can earn 4 of them, as well as four victory poses.
- BFG. Radec's plasma cannon, the Sweet Bot's Gatling gun, Nathan's Grenade Launcher, Ratchet's RYNO V and Nariko's cannon.
- Bilingual Dialogue: In the cutscene preceding Kat and Emmett's rival battle, the two converse without any difficulty understanding one another, despite the fact that she's speaking French/Japanese and he's speaking English.
- In the Japanese version, it is played out with Dante (vs. Nariko) and Parappa (vs. Spike), as they remain the only two characters to retain their original English dub. In the case of Dante, it could be a Shout-Out to how the main Devil May Cry titles (in addition to the Western reboot) have never been dubbed in Japanese. Isaac gets this treatment as well, since the Dead Space games have never been to Japan.
- This actually causes a Lost in Translation moment for Spike and Parappa. In the former's cutscene, the latter still refers to him as Spike, despite being named Kakeru in Japan, although it may be a jab towards his spike-y hair.
- Bloodless Carnage: Just another reason the game earns a T-Rating.
- Breaking the Fourth Wall: Most of the roster's select screen dialogue seems to do this both obviously and subtly when they're selected. Some of them are merely Leaning on the Fourth Wall (Kratos saying "Let's see what you can do!") while others seem to blatantly address the player (Sweet Tooth's "Right choice" select quote).
- The Cameo
- Cool Versus Awesome: Matchups such as the guy who killed Ares fighting a psychopathic clown killer, as well as an obese princess and a raccoon thief fighting a freak of nature trapped in a scuba suit, an old man who literally REFUSES to die, and an adventurer who possesses rotten luck.
- Composite Character: The cast will frequently draw various elements from their home series that don't generally make sense with that series' continuity. Some notable examples:
- Bioshock is an example of a composite franchise; the character representing the series (Big Daddy) hails from the original games, while the stages and items representing it are from Bioshock Infinite. The icons and backgrounds are a mix of both the Rapture games and Infinite.
- Darker and Edgier: When compared to its "competitor," Super Smash Bros.. All-Stars rarely falls into the type of Nightmare Fuel seen in Smash, but it does push the M-Rated fighters as far as it can with a T-Rating (if only in dialogue and through the slide-show of a story-mode). Also notably Solid Snake was barred from using guns in Brawl, but in Playstation All Stars, several characters have movesets based around them entirely.
- Designated Girl Fight: Averted in the game itself with Fat Princess, Nariko, and Kat all having male rivals, but played straight in Kat's intro trailer where she starts off fighting Nariko one-on-one.
- Disproportionate Retribution: Sweet Tooth is admiring his 'perfect' ice cream. Kratos comes and knocks it out of his hands. Kratos then dies a horrible death.
- Not just the Kratos/Sweet Tooth rivalry either. Sackboy comes in and instantly becomes the Little Sister's new best friend. A seemingly jealous Big Daddy then destroys the little sackperson. It's hard to say if the Little Sister sees the Big Daddy as less of a friend because of it. You still get the Big Daddy's level 1, through the fight, so maybe the Little Sister is the mastermind behind pitting Mr. Bubbles against Sackboy?
- Although, based on the Big Daddy version of the rivalry, she seems to be hungry, and as Little Sisters are dependent on ADAM, it's possible she's going through some symptoms of withdraw from being hungry for it.
- Dynamic Entry: Kratos suffers one of these at the hands (or feet) of Parappa while shouting "You gotta believe!" in the early tech-demo shown by Super Bot at San Diego Comic-Con. Fat Princess then outdoes even this by body-slamming both of them.
- Final Boss: Polygon Man is the one responsible for bringing the fighters together.
- Foreshadowing: In the background of the Rival Arena, behind the XMB-style waves, there are flashes of purple lightning. In Arcade Mode, you fight in the Rival Arena prior to the final boss fight with the purple colored Polygon Man.
- Full-Name Basis: The Announcer uses full names for characters that have them, so it can be a little jarring to go from "Sir Daniel Fortesque" to simply "Spike".
- In-game, only three are affected by this trope: Nathan Drake, Sly Cooper and Emmett Graves.
- Fun Size/Super-Deformed: The minions are rendered like this. You'll never look at Sully or The Helghast the same way again after seeing them chibi-fied. This actually does little to distort the Ape Escape monkeys, who always look like this.
- Gameplay and Story Segregation: The attract trailer depicts Radec overpowering Sir Dan in close-combat, when the opposite would be more likely in the actual game.
- Guest Fighter: Big Daddy, Heihachi Mishima, Dante, Raiden, and Isaac Clarke later on as DLC.
- Happy Dance: The minions engage in this when the player using them performs particularly well by getting a bunch of kills at once.
- I Am Not Shazam: Used by SuperBot with one character. "Sweet Tooth" should normally be named "Needles Kane" (though his own series has taken to calling him Sweet Tooth as well).
- I Am Not Weasel: Played straight with Daxter, after Clank calls Daxter a weasel creature. This seems to be Daxter's Berserk Button, as it is what eventually leads to Jak and Ratchet battling.
Clank: Did that... weasel... creature just call me a "sidekick?"
Daxter: WEASEL CREATURE?
Jak: Maybe it's time someone taught you some manners! (Daxter hands Jak his gun, as Ratchet draws his Omniwrench)
- Imported Alien Phlebotinum: This depends heavily on to what degree Polygon Man could be described as "alien." Many of the endings have the winner glowing translucent blue, having taken control of All-Star Power (seemingly gained from Polygon Man after he explodes) and utilizing it for their own purposes. Spike declares he's ready to take on whatever Evil Plan Specter has since cooked up, while Drake uses it to power Sully's plane to head off to another adventure. Some characters come up with their own explanations for it, such as Jak entering Battle Royale thinking AP is a new form of Eco (which he continues to believe after winning) while Heihachi writes off his new-found abilities as a side-effect of the youth serum.
- Kick the Dog: Before their rival fight, Kratos knocks over Sweet Tooth's ice cream cone for no reason. Sweet Tooth was being plenty reasonable beforehand, only demanding that Kratos pay and retaliating during the actual fight.
- Leitmotif: Every character gets two brief unlockable themes that play when they're victorious. They range heavily in genre from Heihachi and Spike's electronic sound, the orchestral scores provided for Radec and Kratos to the heavy metal riffs used by Sweet Tooth and Dante. Most of them draw on the theme music of their respective series, such as Nate's Theme and The Rage of Sparta.
- Let's You and Him Fight: The Rivalry cutscenes have maybe 30-45 seconds to justify the oncoming battle. Few of them manage to give much of a reason for it. Compare Drake and Sly fighting over a treasure map to Heihachi being "disrespected" by Kuro.
- Mood Dissonance: Intentionally invoked. Superbot wants there to be a charm in the juxtaposition of setting lighthearted E-rated characters against M-rated murderers in stages that jump between tone and theme routinely.
"In terms of integrating them all into the same world, part of this is supposed to feel like a mash up. We're not just trying to sanitize everything, we kind of want them to stand apart from one another — that's where the irreverence and the humour comes from. It's a challenge, but ultimately we've found a pretty decent balance of getting them all to live in the same world."
- Mythology Gag: Heihachi's rival battle is against Toro and Kuro. They even comment on how he looks younger.
- Oh, Crap: Any time a character has suffered a Super, they're given a respawn quote that usually falls under this (Nathan Drake naturally says the trope title.)
- Power Creep, Power Seep: Invoked when you take Parappa, who fights with music and karate, and pit him against Radec, who is a cold-blooded Colonel Badass that owns a lot of heavy firepower. Right now, taken to its logical extreme with Nathan Drake, who hails from one of the more realistic (sort of) series featured in-game and has no powers whatsoever.
"While no one doubts Fat Princess' moxy, she probably wouldn't fare too well against Kratos' homicidal rages and penchant for ripping the heads off of enemies. Balance is key."
- Unexpectedly, Kratos is designed to be a beginner-friendly character with high combo-potential while PaRappa and Fat Princess are made to build meter quickly and create complex villager-rush set-ups respectively. Lead designer Omar Kendall makes a small joke referencing his tier-standing.
Interviewer: That seems unfair.
Kendall: I do feel a little bit sorry for Kratos, but he does put up a good fight.
- Pre Ass Kicking One Liner: The majority of characters have some good ones in the Rival Cutscenes
Kratos: The Ghost of Sparta bends to no mortal!
Sweet Tooth: Dunno if you got any money in that skirt of yours... But one way or the other, you're paying for it.
Radec: Let's hope this provides more than a momentary diversion, though somehow I think it won't.
Cole: You're either gonna help me, or I'm gonna stop you... here.
Evil Cole: Okay, Princess! How about instead of cake, I stuff my foot in your mouth!
Ratchet: I think this is plenty reasonable. Let's settle this.
Jak: Maybe it's time someone taught you some manners!
Dante: Just remember when the blade's at your throat, I gave you a chance to walk away.
Heihachi: You should have listened to your friend. Now I'll give you a lesson in respect you won't forget!
Nariko: Then I'm afraid you won't be walking away from here at all.
Spike: Well, I'm not going to wait around to find out!
Kat: It's not going to be today!
Emmett: I knew it would come to this. You keep your feet on the ground, girlie, and I'll try not to drop a building on you.
Zeus: You will pay with your life for your insolence.
Isaac: I know the dangers of men convinced they're gods. If I'm what stands between you and the rest of civilization, I'll put an end to this... now!
- The Rival: Every character has a rival matchup in the arcade mode, most of which, if not all, have a specific reasoning. The opening movie showcases them in the following order (save for DLC).
- Jak and Daxter vs. Ratchet and Clank (Both are duos. Developers Naughty Dog and Insomniac are "friends", and these two IPs are often considered rival platformer/shooter counterparts.)
- Sly Cooper vs. Nathan Drake (Both are treasure hunters; however, while Drake takes from ancient ruins, Sly steals from other thieves. Also, they both have it in their respective families; Nathan is a self-proclaimed descendant of Sir Francis Drake, while the Cooper clan's line of thieves goes on for centuries. Both also grew up as orphans and had a game named after the idiom "honor amongst thieves".)
- Evil Cole MacGrath vs. Fat Princess (Both are rather greedy; for Evil Cole, it's for power, for Fat Princess, it's cake.) Gameplay-wise, both inFAMOUS and Fat Princess rely heavily on duality with the colors red and blue representing different sides. In Fat Princess, you can choose either the Red Kingdom or the Blue Kingdom, and in inFAMOUS, Cole can become either Hero Cole, who is represented by the color blue, or Evil Cole, who is represented by the color red).
- Sir Daniel Fortesque vs. Colonel Mael Radec (Both are soldiers who are also commanders and are also dead. SCE Cambridge made the MediEvil games and helped with the development of Killzone 2.)
- Big Daddy vs. Sackboy (Both are silent characters who have others do their speaking for them, Andrew Ryan/Little Sister for Big Daddy and Stephen Fry for Sackboy. Both BioShock and LittleBigPlanet place emphasis on the player's choices, moral and ethical choices for BioShock, and level and character designs for LBP. Big Daddy and Sackboy also come in many different varieties. It could also be a big vs. little motif.)
- Dante vs. Nariko (Both have a game developed by Ninja Theory that focus on fast, hack n' slash gameplay. Both carry magical weapons tied to their souls, passed down from their respective fathers. Both also suffer hatred in their native worlds for all they do to protect them - Nariko because she is female when the prophecy specified a male hero, Dante because he's being hunted by the demonic conspiracy that runs the world for being an angel/demon hybrid.)
- Heihachi Mishima vs. Toro (Both are Japanese-speaking characters, and were in Street Fighter X Tekken, which might explain why Toro recognizes Heihachi. They also are related to cats: Toro is a cat, and the back of Heihachi's gi has a tiger head.)
- Parappa vs. Spike (Both are from colorful, quirky Japanese franchises. Both also have anime that never made it outside of Japan.)
- Cole MacGrath vs. Raiden (Both have electric powers. Both have also have electricity-themed names; "Coal" is burned to produce electricity, while "Rai" and "Den" are the Japanese words for "Thunder" and "Lightning", respectively.)
- Kratos vs. Sweet Tooth (Both are from popular Sony franchises directed by David Jaffe. Both characters were even created by him, have Blood Knight tendencies and both of them killed their own families. Kratos genuinely loved them and was tricked into their murders, while Sweet Tooth despised them and slaughtered them of his own free will.)
- Kat vs Emmett Graves (Both have a Scarf of Asskicking and Power Glows. Also, both have been touched by cosmic forces, but whereas Kat's is beneficial, Graves has to suppress his lest he turn into an Outsider. Said cosmic forces power their games' main enemies.)
- Isaac Clarke vs Zeus (Zeus is a deity with a desire for absolute control, while Isaac has had problems with both religion (Unitology) and authority figures (EarthGov). Also, both are from franchises that love brutal dismemberment. Also, note that Zeus is a god who hails from a mythological setting while Isaac is a regular human from a futuristic setting. Also, both character's final Limit Break transports enemies to another battlefield; for Zeus, it's the Summit of Sacrifice while for Isaac, it's the Sovereign Colonies ship graveyard/minefield outside of Tau Volantis.)
- Rule of Cool: Much of the game's low level of sense can be chalked up to this.
- Series Mascot: Many, but special mention goes to Toro Inoue, a company mascot.
- Soundtrack Dissonance: The dark, moody score to the Hades level fits well with Hades himself laughing manically in the background. This trope comes into effect when the Patapon warriors start attacking, their upbeat tune replacing the original while Hades continues overlooking the arena.
- Also, during the Stowaways stage. The pacific and appealing main theme of Uncharted 3 barely fits with the punch-fest this game is.
- When a character activates their Level 3 on a stage that doesn't fit. Try listening to Dante's metal-ish theme kick in while playing on Dreamscape.
- Two Girls To A Roster: There are eighteen male characters and two female characters in the base game, Nariko and Fat Princess. Subverted later with Kat as DLC.
- Theme Music Power-Up: Each character gets this during their Level 3 Super.
- Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Destiny: The main premise of the game. The games allow for many dream matches, like Kratos vs. Sweet Tooth, Nathan Drake vs. Jak and Daxter, and Sly Cooper vs Cole MacGrath. This does not just apply to Sony, but for other companies as well. Come on, where else are we going to see a Big Daddy go head-to-head with Heihachi Mishima?
- Unexpected Character:
- Fat Princess and Parappa the Rapper as playable characters.
- Out of all the potential Guest Fighters, who expected Big Daddy? And to be the first announced?!
- Who else, aside from Street Fighter X Tekken players, expected Toro, who is almost completely unknown outside Japan?
- Did anyone really expect Emmett Graves to be one of the first two DLC characters announced?
- Did anyone expect that to be followed up with Zeus from God of War and the multi-platform Isaac Clarke?
- The biggest one, however, is the Final Boss: Polygon Man — though only a few might recognize him.
- Victory Pose: The Victor during the match-end screen does this. The results screen also features the winner with a celebratory grin or some other triumphant pose.