Here’s something you might not know about me: I’m obsessed with the mobile version of Injustice: Gods Among Us (Free). It’s funny too, because, when the game first launched in April of last year, I really liked it upon first impression. However, as with many free to play games (and I’m sure I’m not the only one who does this), I did sort of a value/time assessment with the game, and although I liked the core gameplay quite a bit, I considered the time investment of grinding, timers, and other free to play-isms and ultimately decided it’s just not worth it. I’ve got too many other games to play, you know?
However, when Injustice developer NetherRealm released their mobile follow-up Batman: Arkham Origins (Free) the following October, something funny happened. I had a similar initial impression of that game, like “Oh this is fun but welp I don’t know that I have the time for these free to play shenanigans." With Batman though, it was far worse. The timer implementation in that game is just atrocious, the major factor in us giving it a poor review. But I was determined. I really enjoyed NetherRealm’s stripped-down, touchscreen take on a fighting game, and I wanted that in my life. So at that point I actually went back to Injustice to give it a second chance, and after putting in a bit more time with it, I got hooked in a big way.
The funny thing is, the free to play implementation in Injustice is actually one of the best I’ve ever seen in the App Store. Yes, the characters have an “energy" mechanic which limits how much you can use them at any one time, but there is such a wide variety of playable characters you’d almost never notice as you can simply switch up your team of fighters and continue playing for prolonged periods of time. In fact, it’s kind of awesome that it forces you to use the different characters, as many of them I might have simply ignored if I’d been given free reign. If there was no energy mechanic, I’d probably just buff out a few characters and use them exclusively. With the timers, I’ve gotten experience with the entire roster of DC characters.
The other major turn off in many free to play games is the “grinding" factor. Sure, it’s possible to unlock every item, character, or trinket in most free to play games, but it’ll usually be at the expense of playing incessantly, likely even repeating stuff you’ve already done, in order to amass the necessary in-game currency to do so. However, with Injustice, the grinding is actually fun. I never get sick of fighting the computer, and at the higher difficulty matches, you’re earning quite a bit with every victory. It’s the perfect game to pull out when you’re watching TV or something; playing it doesn’t always require your full attention but it’s enough that if you aren’t careful what you’re doing you’ll get your teeth knocked out. In other words, it’s a grind that never feels like a grind, because you’d probably just be playing it anyway.
So anyway, yeah I love the Injustice mobile game, and I’m not afraid to admit it. It might even be my favorite iOS game. All this lovely personal backstory about Injustice is just my longwinded way of bringing up that the newest Challenge has gone live today, and it’s for a brand new and exclusive-to-mobile character, the diabolical Darkseid. The challenge even will run from today until March 24th, and if you’re able to complete it you’ll be rewarded with a Gold Darkseid character card.
I guess the moral of this story is never be too quick to judge. I know a lot of peoples’ reaction to free to play games is instantly “NOPE!" and I’m guilty of that at times too. But I think of all the enjoyment I’ve gotten out of Injustice over the past five months or so, all without ever spending a cent, and can’t help but feel fortunate that I gave the game that second chance. An unfortunate part of my delayed entry to the game is that I’ve missed out on some time-limited characters in the time that I wasn’t playing the game, but NetherRealm has recently started recycling some of those Challenges starting with the Batgirl challenge last month. Hopefully they’ll eventually recycle all the ones I’ve missed, since I’ve definitely got the “Gotta catch ’em all" fever with this game.
If you’re like me and were initially interested in Injustice: Gods Among Us for mobile, but were turned off by the free to play nature of the game, consider giving it another try, especially if you love fighting games. Sure it’s not a full-blown fighting game, but it’s damn fun. My biggest dream is that NetherRealm creates a similar mobile offering using their Mortal Kombat cast of characters, I might actually die if that happened. If you do decide to embark on an Injustice mobile adventure, our tips guide was a huge help in getting me going in the early parts of the game, so be sure to check that out. If you’re already an Injustice fan, be sure to take part in the limited time Darkseid Challenge and nab yourself that Gold card (or three).