A few days ago we posted that the highly anticipated sequel to the blockbuster Video Game Batman : Arkham Asylum has been officially titled Batman: Arkham City. We also reported some brief plot information. “Arkham City builds upon the intense, atmospheric foundation of Batman: Arkham Asylum, sending players soaring into “Arkham City“, the new maximum security “home” for all of Gotham City’s thugs, gangsters and insane criminal masterminds“. At that time that’s all we heard about the game. Well, since then quite a few more details have emerged. More characters, plot details and game mechanics have been uncovered by CVG via GameInformer.
Click after the jump read the main points.
– After taking power, Mayor Sharp declares Blackgate and Arkham unfit, and buys off a portion of the slums of Gotham. Walling off the area and calling it “Arkham City”.
– Sharp then contracts a mercenary group called Tyger into defending the walls. The prisoners are only given one rule: “Don’t try to escape”, with the penalty for doing so being death. Beyond that, they can do whatever they want within.
– Hugo Strange heads the new Arkham, though it seems like this fact is cloaked in mystery to the outside world. Those who look into him disappear.
– A year passes. Two-Face is admitted into Arkham City and he realizes he has to make a move to assert himself in the new prison lest he be eaten alive. He captures Catwoman, figuring a public execution should do the trick.
– The Rocksteady team is aiming for a highly detailed city, on the level of what they did in the first game with Arkham itself.
– Gadgets can now be used during fights – the GameInformer article mentions Batman putting explosive el on the back of one of his opponents during a brawl.
– You can now pull off multiple counterattacks at the same time.
– Many of the super villains have formed gangs, and taken control of different portions of the city.
– The team wants to push the “forensics” angle of the first game more, incorporating puzzles in them that will become more complex as the game goes on.
– Most of the key gadgets that were unlocked late in the first game are available by default.
– Interrogations replace the Riddler maps of the first game.
– Batman can now taunt his enemies via a button press.
– Certain characters have optional sidestories within Arkham city (the article mentions Zsasz), that you can dig into.
– Harley has a new costume. From the article: “Instead of a nurse outfit, Harley now wears red and black pants, and a matching midriff-baring top. Her face paint has been scaled back to a much more subtle degree, and she now has a Joker tatoo on one of her hips peeking out over her waistband.”
– Batman’s been given a new gadget called the “broadcast analyzer”. The article mentions several broadcasts Bats can listen in on, like the GCPD dispatch and Gotham FM. The main usage here has Batman tuning in to listen to a message left for him by the Joker.
– Oracle is missing, so Alfred is the one in Bruce’s ear (at least at the beginning of the game)
– Rocksteady wouldn’t detail their multiplayer plans.
I’m fairly excited for the sequel. I loved the first one. Though, it wasn’t a perfect game. It’s hard to not appreciate all its glorious wonders from stunning graphics, superior voice acting to its fantastic mix of action and stealth game play, but it wasn’t with out it’s problems. The game play was ridiculously repetitive. Disposing of Jokers goons room after room got immensely tiresome. Boss battles were easy and undramatic. Villains were slim. Instead of fighting Scarcrow four fucking times another baddie from Batmans rogues gallery could have easily been added. And, the game length was wicked short, 10-12 hours. The story of the game takes place in the course of an evening, but you shouldn’t be able to rip through it in real time.
Batman: Arkham City promises a vast range of new and enhanced game play, but based off the bullet points above it seems more of the same. I’m basing my opinion on loose information so I have to reserve judgment until I hear more. I’ll be more excited when I hear of more compelling game play. Puzzle solving, usage of a bat themed vehicle, side missions…etc.
Batman: Arkham City is set to be released in the fall of 2011 on PS3, Xbox 360 and PC.