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Don't tug on Superman's cape…

Batman’s been the king of comic book video games for years, but he’s hardly the only member of the vast DC Universe worthy of starring in their own game. Thanks to the developers of the Mortal Kombat games, those unique characters will finally get a chance at stardom with the upcoming fighting game Injustice: Gods Among Us.

But which heroes and villains have been deemed worthy for inclusion so far? And who do we hope to see in the final game? Here’s our combo roster and wish list for the Justice League brawler…

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Who's on this Justice League?

Before we start guessing which characters might be in Injustice, let’s first familiarize ourselves with the characters we know are playable. Here’s our continually updating list of the confirmed roster of DC heroes and villains.

Newly updated with confirmed fighters Lex Luthor and Bane!

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Batman

Does Batman really need any explanation or introduction? An orphan that became the ultimate man to battle crime on the streets of Gotham, Batman is one of the most enduring characters in modern fiction. No matter what universe he’s in, you can always count on the Dark Knight to strike fear in the hearts of criminals everywhere.

Featuring a costume closer in look to the body armor of the Dark Knight films, Injustice’s Batman seems pretty intense. More violent than usual, to keep up with his powerful enemies he’s gotten pretty cutthroat. But will this Batman, no matter how evil, actually cross the line into murder? (And yes, Bats is voiced by Kevin Conroy, the same actor in the Arkham games.)

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Superman

“Faster than a speeding bullet! More powerful than a locomotive! Able to leap tall buildings in a single bound! Strange visitor from another planet, who came to Earth with powers and abilities far beyond those of mortal men! Disguised as Clark Kent, mild-mannered reporter for a great metropolitan newspaper, fights a never-ending battle for truth, justice, and the American way!” Those words are still as true today as they were 60 years ago, though that’s been inverted in Injustice. As you can tell from the above image, Superman isn’t so friendly these days.

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Flash

After being struck by lightning and a mixture of chemicals, CSI technician Barry Allen (he was doing it years before it was cool) was able to tap into the Speed Force. Officially the Fastest Man Alive, The Flash uses his speed to fight crime all over the world and in his hometown of Central City. Capable of hitting speeds that can even allow him to travel through time, we look forward to all the creative ways Injustice uses his velocity.

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Solomon Grundy

He may not be pretty, but it’s hard not to love the simple-minded reanimated Solomon Grundy. A walking corpse that routinely gets possessed by different souls, he’s super strong, tough, and doesn’t know the word quit (or most other words). Hot on the heels of his surprising appearance in Batman: Arkham City, we love the morbid comedy Netherrealm is giving Grundy as a fighter in Injustice.

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Harley Quinn

Known to gamers and comic fans alike, Harley Quinn is famous as the greasepaint-wearing henchmen of the Joker. Prone to violent outbursts and incredibly quick on her feet, Harley has enough hand-to-hand skills to keep up with Batman and his posse. Formerly an Arkham Asylum psychiatrist that until she fell in love with the Joker, Harley is looking more violent than ever in Injustice. In a world that twisted heroes into villains, just how evil have the original villains become?

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Wonder Woman

An Amazonian princess from the female-only Paradise Island, Diana came to the modern world to teach man how to exist peacefully. Ironically that’s lead to her having to get into hundreds of battles, but that’s fine with Wonder Woman as she’s one of the most able fighters in the DCU. As powerful as any of the men in the Justice League, she’s trained all her life to defend herself and protect the innocent. She’s also prepared to use deadly force if need be, something her Injustice characterization embraces.

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Nightwing

What happens when you spend your youth being the Boy Wonder to Batman’s Dark Knight? Well, eventually you grow up and start cleaning up the streets on your own. That’s the story of Dick Grayson, the original Robin, who put his own fist-shaped mark on Gotham’s criminal underbelly as Nightwing. Facing off as Nightwing would be all about hitting hard, hitting fast, and nimbly dodging the attacks of your enraged foes. This light-footed hero would be most at home on the rooftops of Gotham and differentiate him from Bats, where he can suspend foes miles above the pavement for some “enhanced” interrogation techniques.

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Cyborg

A young man whose life was altered forever when his father saved him from the brink of death by rebuilding his broken body as a half-robot. Directly connected to a catalog of technology, Cyborg used his tech powers for good whether on the Teen Titans or in his new status quo with the Justice League. Following DC’s reboot of its continuity, Cyborg became a founding member alongside Superman, Batman and the rest. Given his new level of importance to the DC Universe and the JLA, it’s to be expected he’d join the team.

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Catwoman

Comfortable on both sides of the law, Selina Kyle is known to steal for good reasons or just because she feels like it. Agile, street smart, and basically good at heart, Catwoman can be a helpful ally or a dangerous enemy. Now a confirmed member of the Injustice crew, she’ll be bringing her razor-sharp claws, stabbing stilettos and cruel whip to the fight. From what we’ve seen, she’ll even be bringing a four-legged friend with her to do some dirty work.

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Green Arrow

Like an urban Robin Hood, the Green Arrow fights for the socially disenfranchised on the streets of Star City. His particular brand of justice is all about custom arrows, able to deliver the precise sort of punch he needs from any range, and always with deadly accuracy. Best known for his friendship with Green Lantern and as the Justice League’s bleeding heart liberal, he’s always been a back of the pack kind of guy, firing arrows from behind the ranks of the more famous heroes. His moves in Injustice mostly focus on ranged, whether he’s using normal arrows or special attacks. However, he can still do damage up close if he has to.

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Green Lantern

Getting inducted into the Green Lantern Corps grants the universe’s most willful with a ring of incredible power. That special piece of jewelry can create virtually anything with pure energy, limited only by imagination and willpower. This would make the Lantern an incredibly versatile brawler, capable of tangling with foes at any range. While Earth has had many Lanterns, the most famous is Hal Jordan and he’s the one included in Injustice. We also hope that the thousands of other Lanterns at least make a cameo in GL’s stage, which we imagine would be the GL home world of Oa.

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Joker

Without a doubt the most iconic super villain of all time, Joker needs no introduction. Batman’s greatest nemesis, Joker has threatened Gotham and the entire world his whole career with a body count that must be in the tens of thousands by now. A huge fan favorite, it was only a matter of time before he’s confirmed for Injustice, but what will his stage be like?

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Deathstroke

Introduced in the early 80s, Deathstroke aka Slade Wilson is the top professional killer in the DCU. Efficient, fast, skilled in every weapon, and a master planner, he’s often portrayed as Batman’s equal both physically and mentally. Such a skilled, ruthless fighter is a no-brainer (especially since he was in MKvsDC).

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Lex Luthor

Perhaps the second most famous DC villain after The Joker, it wouldn’t be a proper Justice League game without Lex there to battle the Kryptonian he so loathes. Once a promising scientist, Luthor’s mind twisted with the arrival of Superman, someone Lex regards as an invading alien that must be expelled immediately. Lex brags that he’s the smartest man in the world, and he just might be right given his impressive collection of genius inventions and diabolical schemes.

Chief among those creations is the green power armor he continually upgrades, like a villainous Iron Man, in the hopes of finally destroying Superman. Look for most of Lex’s attacks to use the suit’s enhanced strength and speed in addition to the numerous nasty tricks he likely has hidden up his robo-sleeves.

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Bane

Made internationally famous this past summer in The Dark Knight Rises, there’s more to Bane than a weird mask and a mumbling voice. Conceived as the ultimate threat to Batman, Bane is a cunning planner with the smarts to figure out Batman’s secret identity, and strong enough to at the very least be Batman’s equal in combat. And while Bane’s mental prowess is his own, the power comes from the super-performance enhancer, Venom, that’s pumped into his veins.

Bane made his mark on comics as the man that broke the Bat, specifically breaking Batman’s back after a lengthy battle. Look for him display a similarly hard-hitting approach to combat in Injustice. Also, if he doesn’t have a finisher that involves snapping someone’s spine over his knee, the developers missed a golden opportunity.

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Wish list: Heroes

Now that we know who we can play as, here’s our list of the other members of the JLA that we hope to see in the game. We threw out a pretty wide net, with a collection of potential heroes big and small.

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Aquaman

Laugh at the King of Atlantis if you want, but Aquaman deserves his place in DC’s pantheon. Guardian of the world’s oceans and it’s dwellers, Arthur Curry defends them with bulletproof skin, his chain mail shirt and his trusty trident. He’s fast, strong and knows how to fight, a perfect combination of powers for Injustice, though we’re not sure where they’ll fit in his ability to talk to fish.

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Black Canary

A one-time leader of the Justice League, Black Canary is a highly trained fighter that’s been cleaning up the streets for years. With her memorable costume and sonic scream, Black Canary fights great solo or teamed up with friends like Oracle, Green Arrow and Huntress. She’d fit in beautifully with the Injustice roster, especially if her sometimes lover Green Arrow is also in the game.

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Firestorm

Firestorm is an elemental powerhouse and a man of two minds. When average High School Ronnie Raymond was accidentally fused with scientist Martin Stein, they became a “nuclear man.” With the power to transmute the atomic particles of inorganic matter, Firestorm can only build things he understands on a chemical level, information Ronnie often depends on Stein’s intellect to supply. Not just limited to energy projection, Firestorm’s transformative powers could make for some very interesting combos.

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Hawkman

Underestimated by many, Hawkman has earned the right to be included in Injustice. Though he’s characterized by his ability to fly, that’s the least of his skills. A cursed pharoh of ancient Egypt that’s been reincarnated for thousands of years, Hawkman is proficient with every type of weapon, and thanks to that and his enhanced strength, he’s one of the best (and fiercest) fighters in the DCU. If that isn’t enough to earn him a spot in Injustice, we’re not sure what will.

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Lobo

The most badass bounty hunter in the known universe, Lobo is almost as tough as the ego-driven fragger thinks he is. Strong enough breath in space and trade blows with Superman, the Main Man has simple tastes and his loose morals lead him to work for whoever can afford him. Often played for laughs, Lobo seems like the perfect fit for this darker take on the DC mythos, hopefully used as one of the more comedic characters.

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Martian Manhunter

The last of his race, J’onn J’onzz (pronounced like John Jones) came to Earth from Mars and has come to love his adoptive world (especially Earth’s Oreos). Possessing flashy powers like flight, speed, laser eyes and super strength, J’onn is also a powerful telepath and can change his shape, appearance and density in incredibly varied ways. A mainstay on almost every incarnation of the Justice League, it would be a travesty to exclude him from the League’s newest fighting game, especially with such a versatile move set to offer.

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Power Girl

Though some might want Supergirl on Injustice’s roster, we’d rather see her grown-up alternate Earth self. Known as Power Girl, she has all the standard powers of a Kryptonian, flight, speed, strength, heat vision, invulnerability, though she’s often a little more violent than Superman. Well known for her skimpy attire, Power Girl has far more to offer than an impressively big chest, and if she’s appears in Injustice, we hope the devs remember that.

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Shazam!

First introduced in the 1930s as Captain Marvel, thanks to some complicated trademarks laws, Earth’s Mightiest Mortal has now come to be known by his transformative word Shazam! Changed by a wizard from a small boy to a super man, the Big Red Cheese is pretty similar to Supes though more innocent and less scientific. Though he may be too nice for the harsher world of Injustice, we hope the smiling sentinel can make an appearance in the game anyway.

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Swamp Thing

Part old school horror comic, part tragic superhero story, Swamp Thing is a human consciousness trapped in an algae-dripping, Frankenstein form. He’s a bit of a gentle giant, but when his beloved swamplands, or the lovely Linda Holland are threatened, he gets nasty quick.
He’s a big green bruiser and needs to hit like one, and move like the slow, soggy beast he is. His home stage would have to be the Louisiana swamps, where he could call upon the local fauna for aid. Strangling vines, thorn-covered bark, you’d need courage in spades to step to Swamp Thing on his home turf.

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Zatanna

Daughter of magical adept Zatara, Zatanna leads a very different double life than most super beings. She makes a living by being one of the best stage magicians currently performing, but she spends her free time saving the world from magical peril. Usually doing super heroics in the same flashy costume she wears on stage, Zatanna is able to make anything virtually happen so long as she says it backwards. One of the most high profile ladies in DC, we hope she can find time to appear in Ecitsujni… er, we mean Injustice.

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Wish list: Villains

Enough of the goody-goody super boy scouts. What murderous, monstrous bad guys do me want to play as in Injustice? Here’s a list of potentials from A to Z.

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Amazo

Why battle the Justice League with a team of super villains when all you need is a robot that absorbs their powers? Built as the ultimate weapon against the Justice League, Amazo is an all-powerful android that uses the League’s own powers against them. A big enough threat that he can take on dozens of JLA members without breaking a sweat, he seems like the more than enough to take on anybody that’ll be in this game.

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Anti-Monitor

There are gods and there are cosmic forces and then there’s the Anti-Monitor. Powerful enough to delete entire universes with little effort, the Anti-Monitor has existed for eons and is the most dangerous force in the DC Universe. A threat big enough to unite heroes and villains, AM would make a great final boss, playing a similar role as Galactus in MvC3. He’s the kind of reality threatening bad guy that makes a perfect final boss.

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Captain Cold

Despite his silly Eskimo parka, weird glasses and seemingly lame freeze ray, Captain Cold is one of the Flash’s most menacing Rogues. Known for his cutthroat leadership skills and ingenious uses for his freeze gun, Cold has been fighting The Flash for decades, sometimes leading teams of Flash’s many other villains. His grounded powers and varied ways for using his freeze ray make him a great candidate for Injustice.

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Circe

One of Wonder Woman’s chief enemies, Circe is a mythical Greek god that has long hated Wonder Woman and her sisters on Paradise Island. Battling WW with an impressive combination of spells and duplicity, she’s a tricky villain, though she’s displayed great power when needed. Her unpredictable magical abilities (not to mention her good looks) might make her irresistible to the developers of Injustice.

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Darkseid

The godlike ruler of planet Apokolips, Darkseid is the very embodiment of evil in the DC Universe. He’s known for incredible strength and stamina, and the most powerful attack in his arsenal are his Omega Beams. Shot from his eyes, the deadly energy beams rarely miss and can kill all but the strongest of beings. Having already starred as the main villain in Mortal Kombat vs DC, we think it’s quite likely he’ll make an appearance in Injustice.

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Despero

One of the Justice League’s oldest foes, in his most well-known form Despero is a double threat. He often occupies a body of supreme strength that easily defended itself against Superman and Wonder Woman at the same time. Plus he has mental powers that can influence all but the strongest of minds. Like Darkseid and Anti-Monitor, Despero is a big enough threat to be the lead villain of the game.

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Doctor Light

If you aren’t a comic book fan, let’s first make a point that this guy is no relation to Megaman’s Dr. Light. He has the ability to control and manipulate light, which extends to force fields, invisibility, flight and powerful energy bursts. An evil scientist, Light is as well known these days for his danger to the world at large as he is for his despicable history of sex violence. If he appears in Injustice, we hope it’s without his background in sex crimes.

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Doomsday

We’ll never get to see a true fight between Superman and Marvel’s Incredible Hulk, but during the Death of Superman story we got to see the closest thing. Doomsday is the unstoppable, unkillable pile of muscle that was strong enough to kill Superman in the early 90s and has been a major threat ever since. We’ve already seen him (or something that looks like him) make a cameo in Injustice’s Fortress of Solitude stage, but does that make it more or less likely he’ll be playable?

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Eclipso

An immortal manifestation of evil, Eclipso is dangerous for many reasons, not the least of which being his incredible strength, speed, invulnerability and dark light rays. But the aspect that makes him truly unstoppable is his ability to possess anyone that touches his cursed gem. Eclipso has had many different identities over the years, and if included in Injustice, we think it’d be pretty cool if his alternate costumes could reflect some of the most famous inhabitants (including The Atom’s former love Jean Loring).

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Metallo

To most comic book fans, Superman’s collection of villains can’t compare to deep rogues galleries like Batman or Flash, but Clark Kent has a few great villains outside Lex Luthor. Take Metallo, a killer robot with the brain of a man and a heart of green kryptonite. He’s always been a very physical threat to the Man of Steel, so he’d make for a fitting (and unexpected) rival to Kal-El.

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Sinestro

With a name like Sinestro, it’s pretty much a given this guy would become the arch enemy of the Green Lanterns. A calculating master planner that wants to protect the universe by controlling it, Sinestro was once the greatest Green Lantern that ever lived. Later in charge of his own yellow ringed army with the same powers as the Lanterns, Sinestro (along with his home base of Quard) would work great in the world of Injustice.

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Professor Zoom

Every super hero needs an evil double in their super villain collection, and Professor Zoom might be the best version of that trope. Dressed in inverted colors of the Flash, the professor was once Flash’s biggest fan in the 25th century, but eventually that was twisted into hate and jealousy. Master of the reverse version of the Speed Force, the ruthless villain is as fast as the Flash, but far more viscous. We hope Injustice includes his devious take on super speed combat.

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Challenge of the Super Friends

So that’s our list of who we want to see in Injustice, but for a fictional universe as vast as DC’s, there are thousands more that could be included. Tell us in the comments what heroes and villains you’d include in your dream roster.

If you’re looking for more news on the game, check out the most recent preview and the game’s home page.

By Henry Gilbert