‘Fanservice’ can have multiple meanings. The most common definition is why Mai Shiranui from King of Fighters wasn’t allowed in Super Smash Bros Ultimate. While the other is about sticking in references big or small to please the fans. Like Heihachi breaking out his Tekken 7 Rage Art in Netflix’s Tekken: Bloodline, or the Dramatic Finishes replicating scenes from the Dragon Ball series in Dragon Ball FighterZ.
So, never let it be said that CyberConnect2 didn’t do their homework when they made Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure: All-Star Battle. They gave it a bundle of links to the series, and then added a few more for the new and improved All-Star Battle R. Here’s a bunch that only the keenest fans would recognize.
9 Friends Look Out For Friends
One of All-Star Battle R’s additions is support characters. Players just pick their main, then they pick a second character to leap in and attack or defend them when they’re on the receiving end. They can pick anyone they like, whether the characters are friends, colleagues, enemies, or completely unrelated to each other.
But if they are friends, the support character will make some remark. Usually, they just call out their name, with Joseph calling for Caesar, Caesar defending his ‘Sensei’ Lisa Lisa, etc. But others make other comments. Josuke and Rohan don’t care for each other, so they only help each other out of obligation. Josuke’s phrase, ‘shikata ga nai’, essentially means “If I must” or “It can’t be helped”.
8 New Parts For Familiar Faces
When the original All-Star Battle was released, the anime had just completed its first season. So, while they got all the Phantom Blood and Battle Tendency cast in to reprise their roles, everyone else was new. Only Daisuke Ono, Wataru Takagi, Showtaro Morikubo, and Kappei Yamaguchi would make it into the anime as Jotaro, Okuyasu, Akira Otoishi, and Shigechi respectively. The new cast made it into the follow-up Eyes of Heaven, but were replaced with the full anime cast for All-Star Battle R.
That doesn’t mean everyone was replaced. Just reshuffled. ASB’s Giorno, Daisuke Namikawa, became ASBR’s Anasui. While the original Anasui, Yuichi Nakamura, became ASBR’s Bruno Bucciarati. Toshiyuki Morikawa went from being one main villain (Part 5’s Diavolo in ASB) to another (Part 4’s Yoshikage Kira in ASBR). Shō Hayami voiced one Dio devotee in ASB’s Father Pucci, then became another in ASBR as Vanilla Ice. The Part 7 & 8 rosters remain the same as the original ASB, except Yūki Kaiji is now pulling double duty as Johnny Joestar and Koichi Hirose now.
7 Grand Heat Quirks
Everyone in the game has two super moves: a Heart Heat Attack (HHA), and a Great Heart Attack (GHA). They’re more or less super moves based on techniques the characters use in the series. Jotaro’s Star Platinum pummels the opponent to bits. Polnareff (no longer ASB’s Eiffel) slashes them at high speed with Silver Chariot, etc. Others have their quirks.
Part 4’s Josuke Higashikata’s Crazy Diamond heals the opponent before smashing them back down. It even gives the paraplegic Johnny Joestar back the use of his legs before taking it away again. While Pannacotta Fugo’s GHA isn’t actually based on anything he does in Part 5. It’s a move he does in the finale of his spin-off novel Purple Haze Feedback by Kōhei Kadono. Here’s hoping it becomes an OVA someday.
6 Famous Last Words
If Jonathan gets KO’d by Dio Brando’s HHA, the camera will close up on him getting struck by it like in the manga. If he’s finished by a jab, he slumps seated like how he passed away. Do the same with Caesar, and he’ll produce a blood bubble. While Esidisi’s body shoots out his brain and nervous system.
Less gross but just as grim, Shigechi will call out for Josuke when Kira finishes him off with his Sheer Heart Attack super move. Rohan will call out Koichi’s name if Kira’s alter-ego, Kosaku Kawajiri, finishes him with his own Bites the Dust GHA. If Josuke takes revenge and beats Kawajiri, he’ll stammer as he attempts to ‘push the switch’ like in Part 4’s final battle.
5 Counter The World!
The most iconic battle in the series is Jotaro Kujo taking on Dio at the end of Part 3: Stardust Crusaders. As such, CyberConnect2 put in a bunch of references to it. If Part 3 Dio drinks blood from a Joestar member, he’ll grind his finger against his temple, matching what he did after drinking Joseph’s blood in the series.
Most famously, his GHA has him stop time and drop a road roller on his opponent. If Jotaro is on the receiving end, they can press Down, Down+Stand Button to escape the explosion. Likewise, the two can counter each other’s Time Stops by stopping time again to switch the freezing effect. Provided they have enough meter.
4 Location Location Location
Every stage in the game has its own hazard, be it a falling chandelier, a pouncing Dio crony, or even a ghost with a knife. Though some are immune to its effects. Akira Otoishi doesn’t get hurt by the lightning strike in the Morioh Town stage because he has an electric-powered Stand. He still gets hurt by Mariah’s power cords though, so it’s not all-encompassing.
Other stages offer Dramatic Finishes where an enemy suffers one nasty fate or another. Regular enemies get smashed out of bounds in Dio’s Mansion stage, while vampires like Dio, Vanilla Ice, and the Pillar Men fry to a crisp. The jagged rocks at Boing-Boing Cape have Koichi’s sound effect on them, so the opponent bounces harmlessly off into the sea. The Bear Sign at the Philadelphia Seaside is pulled inwards by Funny Valentine’s power as per the manga, so it moves closer to the victim as they get sent towards it. Sometimes the simplest things can be bizarre.
3 Gold Experience Requiem Bites The Dust
Giorno Giovanna’s Gold Experience Requiem GHA boosts his attacks, helps him glide in midair, and makes him immune to any and all damage until it runs out. Its only drawback is that it’s slow to activate, giving the opponent time to smack Giorno out of it. If they can’t do that, they have to spend awhile on the defensive instead.
Unless they’re playing as Kosaku Kawajiri. In canon, he was the first person to gain a Requiem Stand as he gained his “third bomb” Bites the Dust from a second arrow strike. So, if he manages to connect with his GHA in ASBR, he’ll not only damage Giorno, but switch off his Stand as well. He’ll be back to his regular Gold Experience instead.
2 Gold Experience’s Swing
Giorno can always respond with his HHA for revenge, where Gold Experience grinds its fist right into the opponent’s face and inflicts lag on them. The camera gives the player a nice close-up of their poor character wincing from its “dull, slow pain”.
Some characters have special reactions to it too. Gold Experience will grind its thumb in Jonathan’s eye, replicating the outcome of his boxing match against Dio Brando. If it hits Part 3 Dio, it’ll match Jotaro’s skull-smashing attempts from their fight. Polnareff will stick his tongue out à la the time he tried to point Hol Horse out while being held hostage. While Bruno, the original victim, acts like he did in the series, wonky jaw and all.
1 No Spoilers!
Pucci had his own reaction to Giorno’s HHA in the original ASB. But it was taken out of ASBR. Why? Because it was technically a spoiler. As was Pucci’s unique ’13 Phrases’ meter, what happened when it filled up, and his original GHA. This wasn’t so bad in 2013, but now there’s a Part 6 anime running, it would suck if anime-only fans learned the ending before it came out.
This alternate Pucci will likely become DLC for ASBR, HHA reaction and all. Until then, players can enjoy a simpler, smoother version of Pucci with a new GHA based on White Snake’s illusion powers. Johnny and Gyro’s GHAs still re-enact their final encounter with Funny Valentine from Part 7 as it’ll be awhile before that gets animated.