The beat-up My Hero One's Justice came out in 2018 and took the hearts of fans by storm. This enthusiasm has not escaped Bandai Namco, and so a successor is already appearing these days. Whether the sequel is actually better than its predecessor is probably a matter of opinion, because the bottom line is that it simply offers more of the same, only in an expanded form, slightly optimized and slightly polished here and there. But that also means that it has all the strengths of the debut and has no nasty surprises in store.
The anime My Hero Academia is one of the most popular and successful shones of the present and is enjoying increasing popularity. The television series, which features a mix of drama, action and comedy, has already received two video game implementations: My Hero Academia: Battle for All (2016) and My Hero One’s Justice (2018). The latter was well received by gamers and critics alike, and was praised for its ease of entry, intuitive controls and variety, among other things.
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You only need to know two things about the sequel, My Hero One´s Justice 2. For one, it's almost the same game as its predecessor, but with a bigger roster and some improvements in detail. And on the other hand, the title is aimed entirely at those of you who know the manga or the associated anime. All events that took place before the third arc are assumed to be known by the game. Newcomers will therefore hardly be able to understand the action.
The campaign may also be understood as a kind of long tutorial, which introduces you to the subtleties of the controls and the differences between the playable characters through a slowly increasing level of difficulty. Just like in the first part, the story is told in pop-up panels, this time covering the action of the Shie-Hassaikai-Arc, so that it almost seamlessly connects to the events in My Hero One’s Justice.
What's the matter?
The gameplay of My Hero One’s Justice 2 is quickly explained. One fights against one, with two support characters. Either you use the special attacks of these companions to round off your chosen style of play, or you use them in the classic way as protection if the opponent should manage to hit you with a longer combo. In this case, your ally hits the enemy and ends their attack, a strategy that also works against some finishers – but only if you have learned how the characters move and what type of attack you can expect.
In order to emerge victorious from the fight, you have to wait for the right moment for every action, since almost all attacks and special abilities can be warded off with a simple block. At least as long as the stamina required for this is available. If it drops to zero, you can no longer block and you cannot run a sprint. There is also an attack that ignores the opponent's block, but makes you vulnerable to attack if the timing is bad.
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The key assignment is the same for all figures, but the associated attacks differ enormously depending on the character. Therefore, it is important to quickly familiarize yourself with the different characters and find out what kind of fighters they represent. Some figures are dangerous at short to medium distances, others shine in long-range combat and still others have an attack in the repertoire at any distance, but do much less damage, for example.
In the end, each character plays quite unique. Be it the speed, control in the air, the super abilities (called quirks) or the potential number of combinable combinations. In addition, each hero and villain has their own finishers, which you can only use when you have loaded the corresponding bar. The first of these special attacks is available to you at the beginning of the fight. You have to earn the powerful second variant and the team attack first; either by handing out damage yourself or having to take it continuously.
The key assignment and the individual maneuvers are clear and easy to learn, so that even beginners can use many different options very easily right from the start. However, if you play longer and grow with the stronger AI opponents, you will soon learn that it takes quite a bit of skill to master My Hero One’s Justice 2. It is not as complex as many a well-known competitor, but the possibilities for newbies are nonetheless extensive.
The clashes between villains and heroes take place in mostly nice-looking arenas, some of which can be severely destroyed and sometimes have multiple areas. And to make the visual aspect of fighting a little nicer, a variety of clothing and accessories can be unlocked for all characters. So instead of laboriously earning alternative costumes, you can put them together yourself in the menu, save them and use them in the next fight. You can get the necessary in-game currency with just a few fights in story, arcade or mission modes. The three mainly serve anyway to make money and to familiarize themselves with various characters, but apart from that they hardly have any reason to exist.
Otherwise there is actually not much more to say about the game. You cannot create your own character that is a copy of other fighters, nor can you explore Open World. This game is all about the struggles that are primarily aimed at fans of anime and genre newbies. Visually, My Hero One’s Justice 2 is nice to look at, even if the developers have exaggerated the effects a bit. In some arguments, you can no longer even see a square centimeter of the arena on your own screen, while the FPS sometimes bends down.
There are also problems with the camera every now and then. In the fast fights, it happens from time to time that you get stuck upside down in a wall or are thrown through a wall, which often leads to the camera stopping at an unfavorable angle and you not seeing your own character or that of the opponent and react badly accordingly.