Screenshot of the Loadout menu in Suicide Squad kill the Justice League
Fans have been eagerly anticipating the release of "Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League" ever since the game was first announced all the way back in 2020, and it’s easy to see why. Getting to play as Deadshot, Harley Quinn, Boomerang and King Shark while they duke it out with Brainiac-controlled members of the Justice League is one heck of a premise. The game promises to turn the ruined city of Metropolis into a playground of bombastic mayhem, allowing players to enjoy the explosive antics and irreverent humor of Task Force X. Several cinematic trailers featuring the rag-tag group of less-than-heroic misfits have been released, building progressively more and more hype for the game. That said, some people have grown worried about the state that it might release in.
While the initial announcement of "Suicide Squad" seemed very promising, there have been a few indications that there might have been problems in its development, as well as some concerning details about gameplay which have come to light in the years since. Now fans are growing nervous as the game’s launch approaches, and they’re starting to wonder if maybe the hype-train has skipped the station. Here are just a few of the reasons why we’re worried about "Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League."
A big delay
One of the first indications that something was off with "Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League" came in the form of a major delay. One of the initial trailers revealed the game’s release date, stating that the game would come out sometime in 2022 — though that clearly never came to pass. An early report by Jason Schreier of Bloomberg revealed the terrible news to fans that the game was "quietly" being pushed back to 2023. This was later confirmed by Rocksteady co-founder and Creative Director Sefton Hill who told fans that the launch date was being moved to Spring 2023 so that the team had the time to make "Suicide Squad" into the best game they could.
Most fans seemed to be very understanding and supportive of the decision to delay the game. They saw it as being preferable to the release of a product that was unfinished or of poor-quality, but it has also raised a lot of questions about why it had to be delayed for so long in the first place. It could be that Rocksteady simply didn’t want to rush its dev team, but there’s also the possibility that unforeseen complications arose in the game’s development. It remains unclear, as nothing in Hill’s statement indicated the reason why the project was so far behind schedule.
The game now has a confirmed May 26 release date, however.
The inclusion of a battle pass raises some concerns
The only thing more insidious than a generic looter shooter is one with built-in methods of milking the player of even more money after the purchase-price of the game. That’s why it was so concerning when a leak revealed that "Kill the Justice League" will have a battle pass that players can pay for even though it’s already a full-price game. Not only that, but it appeared to feature multiple in-game currencies and have an in-game store. This naturally raised some concerns about pay-to-win game mechanics. The leak was posted to a thread on Reddit, where one user commented, "Don’t tell me that after 8 years all we get is a microtransactions filled GaaS lol. If it’s legit I just lost all the excitement I had for this game."
The developers addressed this concern when one of them reportedly told VGC that "while a battle pass is planned for the game, it will be focused on cosmetic items such as skins." That might not sound so bad if true, but it still raises some red flags that an entire battle pass of pay-locked content is being added to a full price game.
Generic looking gameplay
After three years of cinematic trailers featuring cutscenes, some gameplay was finally revealed for "Kill the Justice League" during a recent Sony State of Play. Unfortunately, much of what Rocksteady had to show left fans… less than thrilled. It seems that many expected each member of Task Force X to have their own unique fighting style, but what Rocksteady showed them was a much more generic third person looter shooter. There seems to be a small amount of variety in the mechanisms between characters, but they all appear to do more or less the same thing – with Harley using a grappling hook to leap between buildings, Boomer using a sort of boost-based parkour, Deadshot using a jetpack and Shark simply jumping and then using wrist rockets to navigate – it seems that all four characters will be doing a lot of leaping around, floating through the air and shooting brightly colored targets as they slowly drift through the skies.
Characters will probably have a few special moves, like Shark beating enemies to death with his bare hands, but a screenshot of Harley Quinn’s weapon loadout screen that was shared on Reddit reveals that characters’ mobility is determined by mods and weapons that are interchangeable, so it seems likely that most movement and combat will not be unique to each member of the squad.
Big purple targets are a weak point in gameplay
Generic floaty shooting mechanics aside, the fact that all of the characters seemed to be targeting purple orbs on many of the larger enemies also piqued the ire of a number of fans. One Reddit user called it "Glowing Purple Orbs: The Game." Another commented on the video stating, "The fact that they included multiple clips of a character jumping in the air shooting the same stationary purple orb like that was something they really wanted to show off. [It’s] baffling."
The glowing purple nodes are likely narratively connected to Brainiac’s method of controlling these weapons, but placing big glowing weak-points on enemies is definitely a design crutch that many fans are growing less tolerant of in general. It’s a technique that’s been used again and again, often inciting the criticism that fans feel like they’re just trying to kill the orb, rather than the monster it’s attached to. It seems particularly unfortunate in a game like "Suicide Squad," though, since it feels like the game’s strength should have been the diversity of its characters, the enemies they’re fighting, and their unique methods of combat. Instead, each character seems to simply be shooting a glowing weak point with interchangeable guns.
There might be a fair amount of grinding for loot
That same screenshot of Harley’s weapon loadout menu suggests another issue the game might have. This screen revealed that players will be able to equip two different firearms, a melee weapon, a grenade, a shield mod and a traversal mod. There were also two other slots that were still locked, implying that other types of equipment would be available later in the game. Each of the equipped items is color coded and has a numerical value in the top left. Harley Quinn’s Clutch Hitter bat was highlighted on the screen, revealing a variable damage range and different ability bonuses. The firearms also appear to have slots where weapon mods could be added.
Reddit users in the thread were quick to point out that this UI looks an awful lot like the ones used by games like "Destiny 2," which rely on players grinding for hours in order for players to max out each and every piece of equipment. User moreat10 wrote, "Mhmm I sure do like knowing there’s gonna be a [ton] of grinding." Others replied by joking about arbitrary missions to kill certain thresholds of fodder enemies or sarcastically suggesting that they will be able to skip the grind for an exorbitant fee. User JerHet replied, "good to know I can skip this game because I just don’t have it in me to grind another loot based game." Hopefully, this isn’t the case, but fans won’t know for certain until the game is finally released.