Injustice 2, the sequel to NetherRealm Studios’s fantastic Injustice: Gods Among Us, was announced during this year’s E3, and will be released for the PS4 and Xbox One sometime next year. Featuring darker, more brutal versions of the DC Universe’s best heroes and villains, the first game in the series might be one of the best fighting games in recent memory.
That said, there were more than a few missed opportunities with the original character roster. With NetherRealm set to announce two more playable characters at Comic-Con this week, we scoured the DC Universe for heroes and villains we’d like to see in Injustice 2.
Ray Palmer (AKA The Atom) is capable of shrinking to the size of… an atom! (Who knew?!). Maintaining his man-sized strength even in his tiny form, this skill makes him a potentially deadly fighter for Injustice 2. More than that, however, he can grow into a giant-sized combatant at will – and, in fact, he was seen fighting amongst the skyscrapers in the background of a certain level in Injustice: Gods Among Us. Sure, he’ll be seen as a ripoff of Ant-Man to the uninitiated, and his size-changing abilities may prove problematic to balance… but imagine the possibilities this character has inside a fighting game!
Yeah, this lady kicks some serious butt no matter which version we’re talking about. Whether it’s Helena Bertinelli (daughter of a notorious crime lord), or Helena Wayne (daughter of Batman and Catwoman), the Huntress never fails to punish evildoers for their misdeeds. A street-level heroine, Huntress relies only on her human strength, training, trusty bo staff, and compact crossbow to wage her personal war in Gotham City. Even Batman often scolds her for an unnecessary level of brutality, so let that fact speak for itself.
The identity of this guy is… complicated, to say the least. Comprised of two separate individuals in every incarnation, names like Ronnie Raymond, Jason Rusch, Professor Stein, Jefferson Jackson, and more have been associated with the “Firestorm” moniker over the years. Regardless, when both hosts combine, this nuclear-powered superhero is a force to be reckoned with. He boasts unmatched destructive powers and fiery bursts, along with the ability to transmute elements and create new objects from matter around him. That’s a complex way of saying, “You don’t want to mess with this dude.”
I know what you’re thinking, but I’m not cheating! Characters from Watchmen are part of the mainstream DC Universe now, so all bets are off! The gravelly-voiced, brutal vigilante known as Rorschach is a fan-favorite from his corner of the comic book landscape, and would make a great addition to this game. If nothing else, his pre-fight dialogue and taunts will bring some dark humor to the match. If Rorschach isn’t possible, however, I’d gladly take The Question – whom Rorschach was initially modeled after – in his place.
Young Virgil Hawkins suddenly found himself gifted with powers of electromagnetism, thanks to the “Big Bang” incident where experimental chemicals were dispersed amongst the population of Dakota City. An unsung hero from the 90s, former star of a popular cartoon, and sometimes a member of the Teen Titans, Static’s electricity-based powers and keen intellect make him a valuable asset for the side of heroes. He could also make for a flashy contestant in a fighting game and, while he is already featured in the Injustice mobile game, it’s time for him to truly shine.
Viewers of The CW’s Arrow television series may recognize this under-utilized character. Dinah Laurel Lance is one of the DC Universe’s foremost experts in hand-to-hand combat, dispatching thugs and ninjas alike with impeccable form. Beyond that, she’s a metahuman with an iconic sonic scream, an attack NetherRealm Studios mastered years ago with Mortal Kombat’s Sindel. It may certainly return some credibility to a character that has been somewhat diminished by underwhelming live-action appearances.
The exiled Princess of her home world, Koriand’r – AKA Starfire – landed on Earth and quickly became a valuable member of the Teen Titans. While certain incarnations of her are better known than others, Starfire’s cosmic powers, flight, and long-range capabilities deserve to appear alongside her fellow Titans – many of whom were in Injustice: Gods Among Us. She was notably absent there, but NetherRealm can certainly make up for it with this new installment. Her sister, Blackfire, would make for a great alternate costume, too.
Much like Starfire, Beast Boy sat out the last bout while his former teammates were swept up into the war between Batman and Superman. Able to transform into any creature of the animal kingdom (and alien beings on the odd occasion), Garfield Logan is a wild card in any battle he takes part in. Unfortunately, his abilities also make him a tricky character to implement in a fighting game. However, if NetherRealm Studios can crack the code, Beast Boy may prove an amazing addition to the pantheon of fighters – and may even usher in the return of Animalities.
Injustice: Gods Among Us had no shortage of Bat-Family characters, featuring Nightwing, Batgirl, Damian Wayne, and Batman himself, along with several of his villains. Even so, I don’t see anyone complaining if Jason Todd – the ill-fated Robin who died at the Joker’s hands – is added to the sequel. After being resurrected by Talia Al Ghul (Batman’s baby-mama and frequent foe), Jason’s fractured psyche led to him donning the guise of The Red Hood, a mantle once utilized by Joker. Trained by Batman and the League of Assassins, Red Hood is a deadly combatant with incredible martial arts expertise, skills with bladed weapons, and an arsenal of firearms he uses to dispatch criminals.
John Constantine may be DC’s magic-user with the highest profile, with multiple comic book series, a feature film, and a television show under his belt. With an upcoming animated movie centered around the Justice League Dark (a team of mystical heroes whom he leads), and a long-gestating movie written and directed by Guillermo Del Toro, DC may be looking to introduce this snarky mage to the gaming audience. His flair for the dark arts and collection of cursed artifacts could very well make him a formidable fighter.
Special Runner Up: Arm-Fall-Off-Boy
Yeah, this guy (who is neither a hoax nor a dream) tears off his own arms to use them as blunt weapons. If you don’t giggle gleefully at the idea of seeing that in a game, I question your sense of humor.