The lights are on
The Joker is loose in Arkham City and it's up to Batman to
stop him. After the surprise hit
of Arkham Asylum, Rocksteady had big expectations to fill. From the minute I saw the Gotham City
skyline to the credits rolling, I had trouble putting the controller down. Arkham City has this incredible ability
to immerse the player in the world instead of the story.
For an open world game, Arkham City is on the small side,
and with the addition of the Grapnal Hook it feels tiny. But what it lacks in size it most
certainly makes up for in character.
Around every corner there's an opportunity to do something. Maybe you hear the screams of a
political prisoner getting mugged or a ringing phone; maybe a Riddler informant
is hiding out in a larger group of gang members or you see a mysterious figure
watching you from afar. Wherever
you go there is always something to do, and Rocksteady does a great job of
making you feel like Batman.
In Arkham Asylum Joker gets sick, so when Batman gets to
Arkham City, it's his job to hunt down Joker, uncover the secrets as to why the
city was sectioned off, who Hugo Strange is and what sort of terror his mysterious
Protocol 10 will bring. That being
said, Arkham City is chalk full of interesting plot developments and several
twists I did not see coming.
The story has resonated with me in such a way that I'm
begging my friends to hurry up and beat it, so I'll finally have someone to
talk about it with. It is not only
one of the best comic book stories around but it's one of the best stories in a
video game, I've ever experienced.
An immersive world and fantastic story will fall short if
the game play is lacking. Luckily
Rocksteady completely delivers and it feels better than ever to dropkick some
thugs. You'll start the game with
the best gadgets from the first game and get many more useful tools and
improvements throughout. Every
gadget has a quick trigger mapped to the controller for fluid use in
combat. Most can be upgraded
through a new leveling system, which adds another personalized feel to the
game. Each player can shape Batman
to his or her play style, this time around.
Arkham City has blown me away and still has me coming back
for more. I've beaten the game but
still have hundreds of Riddler trophies to trackdown, Augmented Reality
Training to complete, playing through a much more difficult New Game plus
option and improving on my skills as Batman in the challenge maps. It's almost overwhelming how much there
is to do.
Rocksteady added all this content and threw more in with the
addition of Catwoman as a fully playable character. She is quicker than Batman but less precise. Navigating around with jumps and a whip
won't always get her to the roof she's aiming for but a couple quickly timed
button presses and she's well on her way to the destination. Much like Cole from infamous she
scurries up the sides of buildings to cover ground quicker.
Though Catwoman is quicker than Batman, she is also
softer. Just a few punches in
combat and she'll be down and out.
So it's interesting to see how Rocksteady's combat system works with
different characters. Personally I preferred Batman over Catwoman but it was
interesting to think about all the different heroes who's fighting moves would
fit perfectly into this fighting formula.
Arkham City is a phenomenal game that keeps the player glued to the
controller, I loved every second of my play through and eagerly anticipate the
Solid review. Stay tuned for a special blog between born4this and I where we talk about the game...you might enjoy it.
Thanks, I'll for sure check it out. Also thanks for the mention in Blog Herding.