So today is the day that Batman: Arkham City hits North America, and although fans around the world will also soon have their copies of the game, there may be some people still on the fence about buying the game (but I haven't heard of one, yet). So I wanted to run through some of the great reasons to but the game and stay up all night playing the game.
"You'll get out, eventually. I'm too busy to keep fighting you." -Batman
Probably the most important reason to buy the game is that it is the sequel to Batman: Arkham Asylum. Arkham Asylum was a game that everyone thought would be good, but were still hesitant based off the history of past Batman video games. The game was both critically and financially successful and cemented the idea built into the game about a possible sequel.
Rocksteady has decided to not only play off the events of Arkham Asylum, but also build on it. The tech that you used as Batman carries over to the new game and will add a variety of new gadgets as well. The fighting mechanics grow even more, and don't forget the enhanced glide capabilities. The story line is probably the largest carry over.
"Come to Kitty!" -Catwoman
The events of Batman: Arkham City take place roughly a year after the events that have happened in Batman: Arkham Asylum. Quincy Sharp, the former warden of Arkham Asylum, is now mayor of Gotham City. Based on the DC Comic tie-in comic, it appears that he is under the control of Hugo Strange. We know from the comics that Strange is obsessed with finding out the identity of Batman and by the looks of the original trailer for the game, he already knows it.
Arkham Asylum has been deemed unfit to contain the villains of The Batman Universe and part of Gotham City is cordoned off to become a walled in prison. The villains are transported in and instantly form gangs and recruit henchman to carry out their wishes to try and become the most powerful of the inmates. But which villains will be in the game?
"I want him dead! Dead, dead, dead, dead, dead, dead. Understand?" -Harley Quinn
Well, it seems like from the very first assets for the game were released, we knew that there was going to be more villains in the game than what we saw in Batman: Arkham Asylum. It also seems that we have had a new villain announced every month since the first trailer was released. In some regards, that is true, because we know that there a lot of villains that will be in the game. Batman has always had the best rogues' gallery of all comic book characters, and this game will be demonstrating that ten fold.
So who is in the game? Let's roll through the list of who we know will be in the game.
Hugo Strange: Manipulator behind Arkham City and he knows Batman's secret identity.
Joker: Still suffering from the effects of the Titan formula and teaming with Harley Quinn out the Sionis Industries facility.
Catwoman: Is she friend or foe? We know that she will be stealing things and be a playable character.
Two-Face: Operating out of the court house in his usual moniker.
Harley Quinn: Mad at Batman for beating Joker up at the end of Arkham Asylum, could still be nursing Joker back to health.
Penguin: Has a British accent and can be found at his trademark location, the Iceberg Lounge, where he keeps Grundy in the basement.
Solomon Grundy: Possibly imprisoned by Penguin in the Iceberg Lounge.
Bane: Could be teaming with Batman at some point and although still has an anger issue.
Riddler: His trophies return with a bigger twist and we are promised that Batman will come face to face with him.
Poison Ivy: Will appear in the game, although her level of prominence is unknown.
Mad Hatter: Recently revealed in the Playstation Qore episode, but other than appearing nothing else is known.
Calendar Man: Known that he would appear from the debut of the first trailer, rumored that he will be part of side missions.
Mr. Freeze: Appears to be working out of a police headquarters, but it seems his main motive is still saving his doomed wife.
Deadshot: Will be in Arkham City taking people out, assassin-style, another set of side missions for Batman to solve.
Killer Croc: May or may not be in the game, was in Arkham Asylum but it is unknown whether he will appear in the sequel.
Talia al Ghul: Was announced at Comic Con and leaves the question of will her father make an appearance?
Victor Zsasz: Also mentioned to be part of the side missions.
Hush: This has not been confirmed, but based on the DC Direct action figure line for Batman: Arkham City, this character has a good shot at appearing.
Black Mask, Maxie Zeus, and Ratcatcher: All rumored from the beginning although none have been confirmed.
If you were keeping count, that is at least fifteen different villains appearing in the game and there we are still told by Rocksteady that there are more secrets to be revealed once you start playing the game. But how will Batman defeat all of them by himself?
"You can't win, Batman!" -Penguin
The answer is that Batman is not alone. Despite what the most recent trailer suggests, Catwoman, Robin and possibly Nightwing will be making on screen appearances in the game. Catwoman will be playable in a segment of the game and we know that both Robin and Nightwing will be playable in at least the challenge maps.
Batman may be the ultimate heroes, but time and time again shows that he knows how to plan things out. By bringing in his closest allies, Batman ensures a victory by the games end.
"When you see what I've been planning all along… <maniacal laughter> You'll just DIE!!" -The Joker
For those of you who are gamers and think you have seen everything, you haven't. For those of you are skeptical because the game is based off of a superhero, let's role through some of the ratings that prominent gaming organizations have given the game.
Videogamer.com – 10 out of 10
IGN US – 9.5 out of 10
Joystiq – 4.5 out of 5
Eurogamer – 9 out of 5
Digitalspy – 5 out of 5
G4TV – 5 out of 5
Gamespot – 9 out of 10
Computerandvideogames.com – 9.5 out of 10
GamePro – 5 out of 5
GameTrailers – 9.3 out of 10
So the verdict is, go out and buy it now. While video games do take a chunk out of your wallet, this game will give you some of the best entertainment you can buy of the year. Batman will get beat up, but he is going to give a much larger beating than he could ever receive.
For those of you who want to save your money for charitable organizations, we have teamed up with Warner Bros. Interactive to give away one copy of the Xbox 360 version of the game. All you have to do is email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with your name and tell us which villain you are looking forward to the most. Contest ends this Friday, October 21 at 11:59PM CST.
So now you have no excuse not to get the game. What are you still doing here?
Posted by Dustin Fritschel