Select Start: ‘Arkham City’ opens its doors to the public

Brian Bertrand

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.

Email This Story

[media-credit id=21 align=”alignnone” width=”400″]‘Arkham City’ opens its doors to the public[/media-credit]In 2009, an up and coming video game company, England-based Rocksteady, breathed new life into the Batman franchise with ‘Batman: Arkham Asylum’. Two years later, the asylum has expanded and the inmates now have an entire city as their psychotic playground in ‘Batman: Arkham City’.

Comic book fans may remember Hugo Strange, who takes Bruce Wayne as a political prisoner. The Dark Knight fights his way into the city to take out Strange while dealing with his old enemies, including a major reunion with The Joker.

When one thinks about Batman, the first things to think of are the gadgets. This game has everything that one could ever want from a yellow utility belt; from batarangs, to freeze grenades, to a frequency disruptor.

Combat has also been greatly improved with a much better countering system, which allows you to counter multiple targets at a time. This comes in very handy during some of the dream sequences in the story.

The attention to detail is staggering. Aside from the stars of the main story, some of Batman’s secondary adversaries make an appearance as well, causing Batman to investigate crimes they continue to cause. It actually adds to the game’s replay value because of the elaborate length of the crimes.

Gameplay itself makes a much better balance between normal and detective modes. You no longer need to use it solely as your night-vision but now more as a tactical planning set up to track your enemies. For instance, when I move into an important area of the game, I can see every important structure better without detective mode but I find myself still using it to find nearby enemies and what their level of danger.

As far as the flaws go, there really are not too many. Sometimes it seemed that characters are actually looking at the Caped Crusader during the dialog and the story does sometimes throw you off. In the beginning of the game, when Bruce Wayne is walking through the processing center of Arkham City, the second criminal that talks to you definitely looks like he is looking to the right of him instead of right at him, even when zoomed in.

Two main objectives, take out Hugo Strange’s operation and find the cure for the Titan-infected blood that The Joker (voiced by Mark Hamill in his final performance of the character) injected into Batman.

Along with an elaborate mix of investigation side missions, ‘Arkham City’ calls for countless hours being put into the game. I think I lost track of time at least four times because I just needed to find that bullet casing or dead body before I was able to find a good stopping point.

The game is a feast for fans of comic book and stealth games alike. For a franchise that has not had a good reputation for its video games, Rocksteady proves itself  to be one of the better developers. Batman: Arkham City, for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC, gets four and a half item boxes out of five.

‘Batman: Arkham City’ has been rated “T” for teens by the Electronic Software Ratings board and contains alcohol references, blood, mild language, suggestive themes, tobacco use, and violence.