'PlayStation All-Stars': Sony's answer to Nintendo's 'Super Smash Bros.' -- VIDEO

PlayStation-All-Stars

Believe it or not, it’s been 13 years since the first Super Smash Bros. debuted on Nintendo 64, bringing together several iconic Nintendo characters in one four-player fighting game and answering one of life’s greatest mysteries: What’s it like to be defeated by Jigglypuff?

Now it’s Sony’s turn. The company has officially announced PlayStation All-Stars: Battle Royale, a PS3 exclusive that brings the Super Smash Bros. formula to the Sony universe. At a Los Angeles media event earlier this week, developer SuperBot Entertainment gave the press its first look at PlayStation All-Stars. Our snap judgment: The game’s a blast, though your mileage will obviously vary depending on your passion for side-scrolling brawlers.

On display this week were six characters: Kratos (God of War), Sweet Tooth (Twisted Metal), Sly Cooper, Mael Radec (Killzone 2), Fat Princess, and, yes, PaRappa the Rapper. The controls are simple: X is jump, while square, triangle, and circle perform various attacks when used in conjunction with the directional pad or analog stick. Key to winning is one’s Super Meter, which fills up during the course of the match and unlocks three levels of special attacks. The Level 3 attacks are the most deadly — and entertaining. Take PaRappa, for instance, whose Level 3 move is an impromptu performance of his “I Gotta Believe” song, which instantly kills all the other players. Or Fat Princess, who can pulverize her opponents by riding around on a giant chicken.

We got to play four of the game’s maps: Metropolis (from Ratchet & Clank), Sandover Village (from Jak and Daxter), Dreamscape (from LittleBigPlanet), and Hades (from God of War). The levels are constantly changing throughout each match and amusingly borrow assets from other Sony games. For example, the hydra from God of War randomly appears on the Metropolis level; a tribe of Patapon warriors shows up in the background of Hades; and a battle on the LittleBigPlanet map will be interrupted by a Buzz! trivia question.

The success of PlayStation All-Stars, which is slated for a holiday release, may ultimately depend on which other characters and levels are included from Sony’s library. Sony wouldn’t confirm any characters other than the six mentioned above. I, for one, would love to see a recent addition like the robed creature from last month’s Journey. Death by scarf!

PopWatchers, which Sony characters are you hoping will show up in PlayStation All-Stars? And while you’re thinking, check out the gameplay footage below:

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