ShockList: Injustice: Gods Among Us Wishlist: Part 2
There has been a ton of Injustice: Gods Among Us news lately, and all of this buzz is getting both the gaming fan and comic fan inside me excited. What characters will be revealed next? Who deserves a chance at the spotlight?
With the New 52 directing its focus on re-establishing age-old characters and reintroducing old concepts, Injustice seems to be taking the same idea with its distinct take on a DC Comics dystopia, where Superman has turned tyrant, and where Batman’s rebels have risen up against him.
But one unsettling trend that I’ve noticed so far is that there is a huge imbalance between DC Universe characters, and Batman-specific characters. Seriously, could there be anymore Bat-family characters in this game? The latest reveals have suggested a more diverse line-up, thankfully, but I want more. So this fan took it upon himself to suggest some characters that shouldn’t be missed when Injustice: Gods Among Us hits shelves in April, as either on-disc characters or DLC. You can also check out the first part of this list to see who we’ve covered already.
Below you’ll find a variety of characters, with their backgrounds detailed, an imagined Injustice backstory for them, how NetherRealm Studios should approach implementing them into the game using Mortal Kombat (2011) and MK vs DC as a template, other characters who could take their place, and how likely they are to appear.
Captain Atom was once a soldier: a soldier who–depending on the continuity–volunteers for or gets tricked into an unstable experiment, an experiment that ends up atomizing his body and rebuilding it through a quantum energy field. As Captain Atom, he’s a deadly hero, capable of much good, and capable of global devastation.
If there’s one good thing that Superman’s authoritarian power play has done, whether he intended to or not, its unite the world against a common enemy. With Superman an unstoppable force playing by his own rules, the world’s governments have not all appreciated his efforts in making a peaceful world through force.
And in an underground lead lined bunker, buried deep, deep below the surface of the Earth, a new Manhattan Project has been in progress, hoping to give one soldier the power to stop a god.
His name is Nathaniel Adam, and he is a patriot who would do anything for his country. Even sacrifice his life for the greater good. Even risk his body being ripped apart by nuclear and quantum energy fields. Even letting go everything he has ever known to become a god himself.
The real question is: will he survive?
Plays Like: Raiden, Smoke, and Ermac, in Mortal Kombat 2011
One of the most powerful beings in the DC universe, his strength is on-par with A-list heroes like Superman and the Martian Manhunter, and he can shoot blasts, absorb massive amounts of energy, manipulate energy and atoms, and fly at lightspeed. Absorbing mass amounts of energy has been known to send the good Captain forward or backward in time, and he’s capable of taking on massive damage before getting hurt.
As a Super, Captain Atom’s most devastating attack would have to be a massive “Self-Destruct” detonation, where he rips himself open and explodes with the fury of a nuclear bomb.
The recent, glowing, Doctor Manhattan-esque look would definitely reinforce the godly being Captain Atom truly is, but a more grounded look–possibly a merger of his classic look with that of his successor Bombshell, that allows him to actually wear clothes, maybe military fatigues even–could give Atom a fresh take and a decidely Injustice look.
Then again, Captain Atom has also served a villainous role as Monarch, an interdimensional tyrant himself, so if he allowed his absolute power to corrupt him absolutely, this look may be the most deserved.
I cannot reiterate enough how insanely powerful Captain Atom is. Ignoring him would be a mistake: his destructive capabilities would make for a great rival to Superman’s deadly powers, and if he ever got out of control–intentionally or not–it could make for an interesting turning point in the battle between heroes.
Last Seen In: Fury of Firestorm, Legion Lost
Firestorm: Another hero with great powers, Firestorm can rearrange the atomic and subatomic structure of inorganic matter at will, and sometimes change his own atomic structure. As someone who could potentially turn everything in sight into Kryptonite, he would be a deadly enemy to the Man of Steel.
The stepdaughter of the Golden Age hero Stripesy, Stargirl’s relationship to the retired hero community has provided her with some of their greatest weapons and wisdom–even if she doesn’t always listen to them. Still, she has proven a beacon of light even when times are bad, and her unwavering sense of right and wrong has forged a truely gifted young heroine with great potential.
When her stepfather was fatally injured joining the forces that tried to stop Superman’s rampage, all Courtney Whitmore had left was his legacy, a cramp bunker filled with newspaper clippings and trophies. That is, until she found two things that had been entrusted to him by friends long gone: the Cosmic Converter belt, which gave her great strength and durability, and the Cosmic Staff, which allowed her flight, energy manipulation, and force fields.
Armed with the tools, resolve, and inspiration of a long lost generation of heroes, Stargirl doesn’t want revenge: she wants peace, and hopes to shed light on a world that has been all too consumed with darkness.
Plays Like: Ermac and Kenshi, in Mortal Kombat (2011)
Stargirl’s reliance on the Cosmic Staff–a weapon that can grab foes with energy tendrils to be thrown, be launched and retrieved by mental command, and can emit energy blasts–would make her much like Ermac and Kenshi, two telekinetic warriors who could manipulate and attack foes from afar. She should have decent mobility through her flight, and could perhaps unleash the full potential of the Cosmic Staff and Converter Belt for a Super.
Stargirl’s costume should reflect her youth and her being a relative amateur to the hero world, with a costume inspired by her usual look: boots, tight shorts, a long-sleeve midriff, and mask. Even better, the alternate future Sins of the Youth Starwoman costume with the jacket, sherif’star, and goggles–a costume with a nod to the Jack Knight-incarnation of Starman–would make for a perfect look in a dystopian superhero world.
Stargirl just really doesn’t fit in the world of Injustice, and certainly not in a NetherRealm game. But with DC head-writer Geoff Johns as her creator, it’s somewhat possible that she could make it into the game.
Appears Currently In: Justice League of America
Starman: Jack Knight has always been the perennial reluctant hero, but in the end he fought for what was right, and making her city a safer place. Having the fan-favorite hero in Injustice would be a treat for fans, especially since he potentially doesn’t exist anymore in the New 52.
Static Shock: Static definitely deserves his own slot, a true hero who’s had enough popularity to maintain a TV series and be the only Milestone comic hero to rise to prominence in the DC universe. While his popularity is usually at ends with what DC wants to do with him, he’d make for an awesome fit in Injustice.
Blue Beetle: Like Static Shock, Blue Beetle fits that “DC Comics version of Spider-Man” kind of role, a teenager with real problems who uses humor to confuse enemies while they secretly out-think them. Gaining huge popularity since his debut, this other Geoff Johns creation is bound to show up in the game somehow, as a character, a cameo, or DLC.
The son of international terrorist Talia al Ghul (and in turn the grandson of Ra’s al Ghul) and the son of Bruce Wayne, Damien Wayne is the result of a twisted Romeo & Juliet romance between two of the world’s greatest enemies. Being raised as an assassin his entire life, the often arrogant and entitled young Damian has yearned for more: to be a hero like his father. And while not always the easiest ally to work with, Damian has evolved, learning from both his father and his older brother, Nightwing, what it takes to truly fight for the greater good. Even if it means his life.
Damien has always appreciated his father’s unrelenting pursuit for justice: spending his every waking moment to save Gotham, save the world, and make it a better place.
But it has to admit… sometimes it doesn’t seem like it works. That Batman’s method is flawed.
The Joker has escaped Arkham dozens of times, wreaking havoc with each escape, and every time he’s captured, it’s only a matter of time until he finds a way out again. And yet, Superman ended the Joker’s path of destruction in but a moment, the clown prince of crime killed and never to take another innocent life ever again.
Perhaps what his mother said was true. His training, his education, it’s all being proven by Superman’s actions. But what does that mean for him? Should he continue a never-ending war that will ultimately consume his life? Or should he join the winning side?
Plays Like: Jade, Liu Kang, and Sonya Blade, in Mortal Kombat (2011)
With all of the most elite League of Assassins training on his side, Damian is one of the most accomplished master martial artists in the world. What he lacks in power, he makes up for with extreme speed and agility, and lethal and precise attacks. With Sonya Blade’s incredibly agility, Liu Kang’s mastery of Kung Fu, and Jade’s mastery of weapons, Damian Wayne could play as one of the most well balanced distance fighters in the game, jumping in and out of combat to deliver fast strike and then withdrawing to time his next move.
Damian hasn’t had many costumes in his short history, but the very-Damian Robin costume–with the green combat boots and hood–would have to be the main inspiration for an Injustice appearance. Cool alternate attires could include his proto-Robin costume, his makeshift-Batman costume (based partially on his Batman #666 attire), and his short-lived Redbird look.
While the whole point of this post was to avoid any more Batman characters, Damian Wayne–love him or hate him–has been an integral part of the Bat-Family for the last several years, arguably showing the most development of any character, from spoiled brat assassin to reluctant hero to an innocent boy looking for his father’s approval. With the recent events of the Bat-titles, it would be a nice touch for Bat-fans to see Damian in Injustice, and with Damian appearing in the Injustice weekly digital comic, it’s quite likely we’ll see him in the game.
Last Seen In: Batman Inc., Batman & Robin
Tim Drake: The most beloved Robin besides Nightwing, Tim Drake was the 90’s Robin: a smart, tech-savvy kid, who was the only person to ever deduce Batman’s identity and really take on the detective part of Batman’s legacy. While the New 52 has altered his origins quite a bit, it would be a great fan service for fans to see him in Injustice.
Stephanie Brown: Call her the first female Robin, call her the best Batgirl ever, Stephanie Brown is a fan-favorite character who escaped her father’s criminal past to become a hero. While DC Comics have treated her like a redheaded stepchild, it would be great to see her given some love in Injustice.
Etrigan, the Demon
Jason Blood was once a normal man. That is, until Camelot fell, and Merlin bounded his half-brother–Etrigan the Demon–to his young friend and apprentice, Blood.
The two have traveled all over the world over the centuries, with Blood calling Etrigan in time’s of great peril, and Etrigan being a force for good thanks to Merlin’s wards.
In the modern era, Etrigan has been both fiery villain and purehearted hero, with Blood never too sure of his alter-ego’s intentions.
But one thing’s for sure: Etrigan always has a plan.
But Jason Blood hasn’t summoned Etrigan in a longtime. With all of the distress in the world, Etrigan’s pull has been stronger than ever, and Blood could swear that the strife has been feeding Etrigan, fueling him.
Etrigan, on the other hand, is waiting, counting down the minutes until he’s called again. He knows it’s coming. He knows what’s going on.
And when he is freed, again…
The world will have more than one out of control Man of Steel to worry about.
Plays Like: Jax and Scorpion, in Mortal Kombat
Etrigan is a fast, vicious fighter, who actually enjoys pain, making him a ferocious warrior on the battlefield. Like Scorpion, his nether-begotten powers grant him control over hellfire, and like Jax, he should be an intimidating force that can strong-arm even the likes of Superman and Wonder Woman. And with recent depictions giving him batwings, he should also have a fair amount of agility and mobility.
As classic as his original look was, his recent Demon Knights look is by far the best yet. Between fearsome armor and a tattered blue cape, it outclasses a bright red tunic and red pixie boots by a mile.
Etrigan is a longtime DC character, and one of Kirby’s best. His demonic nature is a perfect fit for NetherRealm’s typical subject matter, but he seems like a really odd choice for a story about DC’s best superheroes supporting an authoritarian regime.
Appears Currently In: Stormwatch, Demon Knights
Blue Devil: Once a man, know an azure demon, Blue Devil has always been a hero. Blue Devil could bring a sense of levity to Injustice, while still bringing some awesome moves.
Mongul is a literal world conqueror, traveling from star system to star system and using his defeated foes as entertainment in gladiatorial games for his empire, Warworld. Mongul has taken on several of Earth’s mightiest heroes, and met his defeat each time. Later, after his death, his son–also named Mongul–first appeared as an ally, only to later betray and clash with Superman and the Green Lantern Corps.
The earthlings have spent so much time battling each other, wittling down their forces with their petty infighting, destroying their own resources in their neverending war, they never even saw him coming.
Mongul has been watching Earth for a long time. Biding his time. Waiting for the right moment to strike. And with all of Earth’s forces striking at what was once their greatest hero…
His time will be soon.
Plays Like: Kintaro, in Mortal Kombat (2011)
Mongul may be a bit of a pushover in modern stories, but his original depiction featured him as more than Superman’s match, far superior in physical strength, and intimidating as hell. Mongul in Injustice could be just as terrifying, making for a tough opponent who boasts long enough to give an opening.
Mongul and his son have had really only one look: pale yellow skin, and purple costume. Even with an unflattering color scheme, recent depictions of the space tyrant have made for an imposing figure, and Injustice should be no different.
We have no idea if Injustice will get any more cosmic than Sinestro’s presence, so while Mongul would make for a great plot twist to the Superman vs Batman war, it’s probably very unlikely.
Last Appears In: Green Lantern
Atrocitus: The famous Red Lantern has been both villain and anti-hero, but in either role he’s been a brutal, hard-hitting monster who has few surviving enemies who can live and fight and another day. If there’s any other person who would make for a great planet-threatening foe (or DLC), it’s be Atrocitus.
Hank Henshaw, the Cyborg Superman
Hank Henshaw is the realistic horror story of the Fantastic Four‘s Reed Richards. Sneaking into space, his team–the Excalibur Crew–were bathed radiation. After returning to Earth, their bodies mutated into monstrous forms: one member flew into the sun and died, the other used an MRI booth to tear apart his metallic body and died; Henshaw’s body rapidly dissolved, and his consciousness transferred into a robotic body; Henshaw’s wife, saved from her fate but horrified by Henshaw’s rebirth, jumped to her death in fear.
His mind inside of the ship Superman arrived to Earth in, and delusional over the idea Superman caused his accident, Henshaw obsessed over the Man of Steel while in space, hatching an elaborate scheme to enact revenge.
Henshaw returned during Superman’s death, pretended to be a Superman returned as a cyborg, and teamed with the space tyrant Mongul to destroy an entire city before Superman returned to stop him. Later, he returned to plague Superman and even Green Lantern on multiple occasions, but his schemes were centered less on revenge, and more on his mortality. You see, the one thing he had learned was that he was no longer capable of death. And that was his only reason for living…
To find a way to die.
Hank Henshaw died the day Superman took over the world.
Superman was seeing red; rampaging, he cut a battlefield in half, destroying tanks, laying waste to everything in sight. And in one explosion, more than half of Henshaw’s body was destroyed. And on his deathbed, the only thing Henshaw could say was “Kill the Kryptonian.”
But the same day he died was the same day he was reborn.
General Wade Eiling has a plan. With stolen LexCorp and Kryptonian technology, and Superman’s genetic code to repair the remaining organic portion of Henshaw’s body, the military is creating the ultimate man; the perfect killing machine; America’s own super-soldier.
Plays Like: Cyrax, Sektor and Cyber-Subzero, in Mortal Kombat (2011)
Henshaw’s cyborg would fit in perfectly with Mortal Kombat‘s resident cyber-ninjas, combining all of Superman’s powers with Henshaw’s ability to control machines and mechanical systems. Like the cyborgs, Henshaw should be able to teleport, perhaps disassembling and reassembling at will, use various projects, and use his cyber-tendrils to catch enemies.
Henshaw’s original look is always great, and he’s sported a crimson-plated cape-less look that was pretty terrifying, but the red variant of the Superman costume that Henshaw sported during the Sinestro Corp war would probably best suit (pun intended) an Injustice version of Henshaw.
Henshaw is a terrific villain, who went from a crazed world-conquerer to a more nuanced tragic figure. He’s popped up erratically over the years, and with each appearance is part of a major event: but he’s still not as much a household name as Sinestro or the Joker.
Currently Appears In: Team 7
The Shaggy Man was an unstoppable mindless synthetic foe, made to be superhumanly strong, fast despite its immense size, highly resistance and durable, and able to regenerate instantly from the worst injuries. It also didn’t need to eat, sleep, or breathe. The only way to stop it’s rampage at the time was to create another just like it, and have the two battle endlessly in a pit deep underground.
When one broke free, it was launched deep into space, only to be forgotten. The other, momentarily stopped by a huge explosion, was taken by the government, and used as the new body (freshly shaved) for General Wade Eiling, the same authority behind Captain Atom’s experiment. Nicknamed the General, Eiling escaped a brain tumor and gained enough power to take on the entire Justice League.
Superman was always a threat. General Wade Eiling knew that, even before he showed his true colors and took over the world. But that’s okay, because the good General has been ready. He wouldn’t be a general if he wasn’t.
Besides a slew of supersoldiers and Operation: Captain Atom, there’s one more project, reserved just for himself. One that will allow him to take the field himself, leading his troops from the battlefield.
Because the war won’t truly be over until he has the Kryptonian’s skull squeezed firmly between his palms.
Plays Like: Shao Kahn
Shao Kahn should be reserved for the toughest characters, and the General should be a tough character. Every time the General has taken on the heroes, it’s been a difficult battle; every time the heroes have won, it was due to an extreme teammate with some other circumstance that removed the General off the board entirely, like launching him into space or into an empty void.
His movelist should be aggression given form, with brutal, unrelenting hits, high defense, and harsh counters. Next to Doomsday, the General should be one of the hardest enemies in the game.
The General is one hell of a villain, but not nearly as infamous as other villains. And with Doomsday in the game–another unstoppable force–NetherRealm may not see the need to have two.
Last Seen In: Salvation Run, Justice League Unlimited
Metallo: While not as brutishly strong as the General, this Superman villain not only has a Kryptonite heart that weakens Superman the longer they battle, but he’s usually been outfitted with the technology and power to take on any leaguer. With a ruthless heart and a deep meanstreak, Metallo could make for a particularly devious and powerful character in Injustice.
Love him or hate him, Lobo is an iconic DC character, especially for his biker attitude, his propensity for mayhem, and love of space dolphins. The Main Man himself is practically immortal–so bad that neither Heaven nor Hell want him–and his Superman-level powers and regeneration healing factor make him one of the most dangerous bounty hunters in the galaxy.
Lobo doesn’t need a reason, besides loving a good brawl. And who better than one of his favorite rivals, Superman?
Jax, in Mortal Kombat (2011); Garo, in Mortal Kombat (2011)
The Main Man should have the same strength, power, and range as Jax and Garo, while also adopting their taunting nature as well. A NetherRealm Lobo should be as cocky and arrogant as he wants, with roughhousing and bone-breaking moves that back up his talk. The use of his signature chain & hook, spacecycles, and even space dolphines should also come into play, especially for some really cool Super moves or throws.
Lobo has sported a few looks over the last few decades, but one thing that’s always been constant is his being a badass.
Lobo’s most frequent attire is his biker look; but in recent years he’s also stuck with a sort of pirate like ensemble that first debuted during 52. Perhaps combining the two somehow will make for the best match.
This violent bastich is just the kind of man NetherRealm likes to put in their games–after all, this homicidal maniac murdered his entire race just for kicks. Besides his genocidal tendacies, Boon has also recently teased the idea, so maybe Lobo will show up, as a character or as DLC.
Appears Currently In: Batman Beyond Unlimited
No one can replace the Main Man.
Created by the immortality-obsessed mad Professor Ivo, this android has used his absorption skills time after time to take on various incarnations of the Justice League, often fighting them to a standstill, and only defeated after the most dire gambits have been played. While he used dozens of powers in the past, he most often uses the powers of the original Justice League he fought, powers which he has been able to retain for some reason.
With Superman causing terror to governments around the planet, many of the top world leaders have looked past heroes for help. Instead, they’ve looked to their greatest enemies, the villains who have caused the most trouble for the Justice League.
One such person, the mad scientist Professor Ivo, has offered his services, with his newest creation: the Amazo robot. Despite its silly name, the military scientists can all agree, its specs look like something from out of this world. And they’ve all agreed, it will take something extraordinary to defeat someone as extraordinary as the Man of Steel.
But what does Professor Ivo want in return?
Plays Like: Cyrax and Kabal, in Mortal Kombat (2011); Combot, in Tekken Tag Tournament 2
Like the cyborg Cyrax, this robot has a host of abilities at his beck and call, adding versatility to lethal, powerful moves. Like Kabal, Amazo should be fast, and having even more tricks up his sleeve, calling on speed and more to take down his foes.
To make him even more unique, NetherRealm could borrow an idea from the Tekken series: Combot. The latest Tag Tournament game allowed players to customize the Combot with moves learned, unlocked, or purchased through its own special mode, giving gamers the chance to make a speedy but weak fighter, a strong but slow fighter, or something in-between. Amazo could be similar, with a mode dedicated to fighting various heroes, and then unlocking their special moves as his own.
Amazo’s classic look with always live on as one of the silliest designs for such a powerful enemy: pointy ears, a red cap, and green stripes aren’t befitting of a dangerous foe like Amazo. That’s why I’d opt for the Justice League Unlimited look: a solid, shapeshifting silver or gold body that can become anything it wants to be, and has the frightening simplicity of Gort in the original The Day The Earth Stood Still film.
Amazo is an age-old villain that always seems to return at some point or another. Will we see him in Injustice is a tough call, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see him show up in some capacity, if even only a cameo.
Last Appeared In: Justice League (sort of)
The Parasite: This old-school Superman villain has also been around a long time, and has been written as incredibly more powerful than he originally was. Most versions only allow him to absorb energy from foes, gaining their strengths: some versions have allowed him to steal their powers as well, if only in a limited capacity and for a limited amount of time. With a game centered around an evil Superman, it would make sense to see one of his classic villains returning to take him on.
Tasked with preventing the horrible future he came from, Matthew Ryder risked his life to travel to the past and stop the villanous tyrant Monarch from ever coming to power. The timestream changed Ryder, gave him powers. One such ability was being able to see the future of any person he touched, something that would come in handy with finding the superhero who was destined to become Monarch.
When Waverider returned to the past, he was certain he had discovered Monarch’s identity as soon as he arrived: it had to be Superman, right?
But the more evidence he found, the more he realized it couldn’t be Superman. The facts didn’t match up right, the powers were different, events weren’t happening at the right times.
So who will be the real victor of this war of heroes? Who’s waiting to swoop in and take advantage of a superhero genocide?
Waverider did travel to the past. And all of the events that happened in Injustice, all of the battles, the fight, the blood, the pain: all of it is a vision, Waverider’s vision. And at the end of the game, he withdraws…
Though whose shoulders his hands are on is a mystery…
Plays Like:: Raiden, in Mortal Kombat (2011)
Like MK‘s god of Thunder, Waverider has been enbued with powerful energy that allows for lightspeed travel and energy blasts. This should allow him to dash around the ring at his leisure and shoot quantum energy blasts to keep his enemy at bay.
There’s really only one look Waverider has ever sported: his entirely gold body, with fiery hair. Perhaps, for Injustice, they can play up the energy aspect of his role, making him seem more awe-inspiring.
Unless NetherRealm decided to take the route I described, I can’t see Waverider appearing anywhere outside cameo roles anytime soon.
Last Seen In: Time Masters: Vanishing Point
Booster Gold: Often comically misguided, Booster Gold has spent most of his heroic career trying to win fame and future by using knowledge of the future to his advantage. But in recent years, he’s taken a stronger altruistic role, taking the responsibility of the timestream itself as his duty. With a mix of Johnny Cage humor and some surprisingly flashy moves, Booster could make for an awesome Injustice character (and definitely deserves this entry over Waverider). Even if not part of the game’s campaign, he’d make for a fun set of DLC missions in the Scenario mode.
Rip Hunter: The original Time Master himself, Rip Hunter may seem like an odd choice, but his use of future technology combined with strategic uses of his Time Bubble could make for some really interesting moves.
He’s a Red Lantern space cat that spits corrosive blood on his enemies.
Everyone thought that Superman was the greatest threat to Earth.
But everyone was wrong.
Because, waiting to descend to Earth, was Dex-Starr: and he’s ready to paint the town red.
He’s a cat. With a power ring. Who spits napalm blood vomit.
Why wouldn’t he be in this game?
Didn’t see your favorite character on the list? Let us know in the comments below who you would like to see revealed for Injustice: God s Among Us.
Injustice: God s Among Us is set to release April 16th to the PS3, Xbox 360, and Wii U. You can check out all of our Injustice news coverage by pressing Batman’s menacing scowl below: