The Review you Deserve of Batman: Arkham Knight
Gotham City is one vicious mistress that gives its citizens no rest. The Jokers death was supposed to give the city some peace of mind, but instead has the populous wondering what new chaos will come next? Fear has flooded the city and now Scarecrow with his new champion the Arkham Knight has made claim calling out the Batman to face his fears! Once again we must dawn the cape and cowl to save the citizens, but this time there might be no coming back.
Batman has saved the city, peace happens for a moment and the Scarecrow screws that all up by unleashing a powerful fear toxin that gas masks are useless. Scarecrow has been plotting revenge against the Dark Knight which made sense throughout the series. Since he has been a key side character and is always failing to take us down as the Batman. The city is now evacuated and the enemy believes they have you cornered, but you never cage yourself with a vicious animal, especially one with skilled back-ups. You will not be fighting solo for long with the aid of Nightwing, Robin and at times Catwoman for a new form of dual control mechanics in combat. However, who is this Arkham Knight that seems to have such a grudge for Batman? This sort of hatred feels almost familiar and concentrated as if they have a personal past with one another…who could that be? That answer will be for another time.
Controls are Key:
I have said this before and I shall keep saying this. Batman has one of the best combat features in any fight mechanic adventure game I’ve ever played. If Rocksteady redid the Matrix video games, that would be the greatest thing in gaming history. As the Batman, you have access to all his combat skills and in Arkham Knight, the combat is upgraded to involve more environmental takedowns. Between using the lamps or slamming an opponent into a circuit breaker it all comes together in a magnificent ballet of carnage. There is even a new ability called Fear which is long overdue. Pretty much you get the drop on your enemies and go into this timed event where after you take down your first victim you have to use the right analog to move the camera quickly to your next target and keep going until it is done. It gets the ball rolling in your favor while you get ready to fight off the rest of the minions.
Your gadgets can be utilized better this time around as the grapple hook can zip you towards an enemy for a take-down. You still have access to the classic abilities against gun-wielding enemies with your smoke bombs or grapple claw to disarm them. One of the best features is the Batmobile. Finally, we get what we asked for and have full usage of the famed Batmobile and I have to say driving this sexy beast is annoying as all hell! It has what I call a “loose and tight” feature where you switch from pursuit mode to battle mode. The pursuit mode is standard where you can utilize the boosters and a stationary missile launcher when targeting an enemy vehicle. The battle mode helps you move in a 360-degree direction with a nasty cannon and if you successfully hit enough enemies you will gain an auto missile target system.
However the moment you get hit by the enemy you will lose the ability and have to start over. This Batmobile comes fully loaded with a grappling hook that you will utilize in missions and of course it can drive on walls in certain situations when needed. Pretty much your Batmobile is your true sidekick that features a remote control feature when you are pinned and need to solve certain aggressive and non-aggressive situations. I can’t speak for everyone else but the vehicle mechanics are a bit clunky, but since it is the first time going for vehicles in the game I can let it slide…like the car does when you perform a powerslide into a freaking wall. Seriously Lucious Fox is going to be pissed after I am done.
I want to talk more on the Dual combat system which is fun and hilarious for your combo meter. Pretty much the better you do in combat the faster you can switch between characters by pressing one of the shoulder buttons to execute a team-up combo. In a sense, they added a co-op feature without having to deal with another character. You notice that a lot in video games that you become your own player two which works sometimes, but they should do an AR challenge mission where you can team up with another person to fight adversaries.
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Graphics Make Gotham Alive:
Rocksteady knew how to bring Gotham to life in video game form by making the city and its people give off a grim personality. I’ve played many Batman titles, but when the Arkham series came out (except Origins. Sorry can’t stand that game) we were gifted to being one with Bruce Wayne as Batman and what to expect when taking on crime-fighting. The game characters are all what we were hoping for and more. I never thought I would have so much joy in taking down Two-Face, Penguin, Poison Ivy, and many other villains. They just all come to life so beautifully and bring off this intimidation factor that was only seen in comic books.
You just get to admire the city as you glide or drive through each well-detailed area. There is an appreciation when you see a comic book come to life, especially in video games.
This game gets Freaky:
There will be jump scares galore and apparently, a nifty first-person shooter is involved sometime during the game and that actually pleased me even more. Going through Batman Arkham Knight has been one big scary surprise with many fear-induced and criminally insane situations. This is one living comic book that I can get behind and since it takes parts of The Killing Joke and Death in the Family that I recognized. The M-rating for the game makes a whole lot of sense with the carnage coming from the fear toxin and at one point you have to play as a certain villain in which you go on a killing spree, which was actually fun until it took a psychological turn for the worse, but it made the character of Batman so much greater as a fictional hero. So on that good job Rocksteady for freaking me the hell out throughout the game.
Now for the Bad:
I already mentioned the controls of the Batmobile take some getting used to, but at times it came to be fun to get around too. The Riddler’s side missions are a bit tasking at times, but I guess I have grown tired of them and wanted to see someone new that dealt some pretty deadly side quest. This would’ve been a great opportunity to grant another villain to perplex the bat, but they rehashed the same guy even though he is popular I just wanted a variety. It just felt as if they didn’t know what to do with Catwoman even if she was a great part of Arkham City as a playable character. I believe Rocksteady could have brainstormed something better. That’s about it.
For the PC enthusiast out there you might have some concerns. Now, this has nothing to do with your systems that some PC gamers want to believe, but rather it is on the developers’ side of the situation. This is why the PC versions have been yanked off the shelves. The PC master race is going to need some serious downtime until the game is re-released this fall. In this case, I am glad I have both options because I do feel that some games are good on consoles and others are good on PC. WB Games and Rocksteady, it happens do not feel bad.
The Not so bad:
People are expecting me to be upset about the reveal of the Arkham Knight is so easy to figure out. Let me be very clear on this because I am getting tired of explaining how this works. We are geeks, nerds, and of course gamers who read manga and comic books. We are capable at this age, to figure out things a lot quicker than those that do not read comic books as much as we do. So yes you figured out who the Arkham Knight is…here is a cookie for being “that guy!”. Because guess what? Not everyone is going to figure it out so easily as we did. In that, it was an A for effort, but if I were to do things differently I would have just made him more vicious and not a lackey to someone else. The character was enough of a badass to be able to stand up on his own and probably take over the city by killing the villains while Batman is investigating what is going on. It could’ve been like that particular DC Movie with a certain name involving a hooded character…just saying. I am going to leave it at that before I spoil the surprise.
Batman: Arkham Knight, comes fully loaded with a hefty amount of downloadable content if you pre-ordered that is with Harley Quinn side missions, Red Hood side quests, and Scarecrow Mission packs. I have not gotten to them as of yet, but all the content and the addition of all things you have to do in the game give you a valid reason to spend the $65.31 on this title. You will be playing Batman for a long time and with that Batman Arkham Knight receives 4.5 out of 5.
All right citizens there is still more work to be done. Please check back as we dabble into the DLC of Red Hood and Harley Quinn side stories. Stay frosty gamers.
Edits were done by Debbie Poon of VGTidbits.com