Batman: Arkham Knight

Batman: Arkham Knight is a satisfying ending to this great series, it’s a shame that once those credits start rolling you’ll know it’s truly over

By Grayshadow, Posted 04 Jul 2015

Back in 2009 Rocksteady Studios did the impossible: they made an outstanding Batman game. Since then the Batman Arkham series has received massive acclaim from players and critics proving that superhero video games can be good, and it has reach its finale. Batman Arkham Knight builds on all the revolutionary combat mechanics with powerful new moves and unique enemies first introduced in Arkham Asylum, and expands the world with a larger and more detailed Gotham. The Batmobile joins the fray in this final installment and with an assortment of iconic Batman villains, making Batman: Arkham Knight an outstanding game to end the series on.

Batman: Arkham Knight,Noobfeed,Rocksteady,WB Games,

The past Arkham games never shied away from Batman’s demons and Arkham Knight is no different. Batman is tested with each new confrontation, attempting to resolve each new problem while questioning his role as Gotham’s hero. Within this 12 hour journey you’ll encounter many familiar faces and dive deeper into Batman’s psyche as he attempts to maintain his sanity and save Gotham once again.

The Arkham Knight and Scarecrow take center stage as the story’s main antagonists. Despite having his name on the cover of the game, Arkham Knight’s frame begins to frizzle out as the story progresses, becoming more of an annoyance than an actual threat. Heavy hints are dropped throughout the story that makes this masked assailant less of a mystery and more of a placeholder for when Scarecrow isn’t around. However, several strong performances given by the various other villains revive the odyssey and kept me hooked, especially the unexpected ones that left me shocked.

This time Batman can explore Gotham in its entirely. All three islands are coated in a dark and stormy atmosphere, teeming with bright neon lights and heavy wind. All the districts are beautifully detailed and have distinct landmarks such as Ace Chemicals and Wayne Tower. Light reflects off the wet landscape and impressive textures brings each character to life. While Arkham City looked remarkable, it’s clear Rocksteady took their time to ensure no detail was left unchecked when designing Arkham Knight.

Batman: Arkham Knight,Noobfeed,Rocksteady,WB Games,

Don’t expect any civilians on the streets. Once again, the entire city has been evacuated, this time after a public demonstration of Scarecrow’s new fear toxin. After threatening all of Gotham with a widespread dispersal of the toxin, everyone left Gotham, leaving the city to the criminals. Car chases litter the streets and hulking rioters stand ready to kill Batman on the spot. However, you won’t only have to depend on gliding to travel from each portion of Gotham. This time around through Batman has full control of the Batmobile.

Ever since it was teased in Arkham Asylum, players have been clamoring to get behind the wheel of the Batmobile and it was worth the wait. This monster of a vehicle can easily plow through walls and criminals. Equipped with nitro boost, anti-personal rifle, and rocket-launchers, Batman’s choice of transportation can chase down criminals and deal damage. With the press of a button this massive car turns into a tank, with better mobility, great for destroying heavily armored drones and knocking out enemies when Batman is trapped.

The Batmobile can be remotely controlled and in several instances, and is required to escape  seemingly impossible situations or solve puzzles. While some situations require clever movement, some challenges feel forced, almost like Rocksteady was trying to fit the Batmobile into as many missions as possible. While driving the Batmobile is easy enough, having to navigate it through a series of ramps and bridges can become vexing quickly.

Batman: Arkham Knight,Noobfeed,Rocksteady,WB Games,

While the tank battles offer refreshing change after controlling Batman for long periods of time his signature combat and predator challenges remain the highlight. Building on the existing mechanics of Arkham City, players now have over a dozen new moves to master. At first Batman feels unstoppable but eventually new gadgets, weapons, and enemies force the player to prioritize targets and constantly be aware of what is happening on the battlefield. During select combat situations, Batman can team up with Nightwing, Robin, Catwoman, and the Batmobile to perform visually stunning takedown attacks and take control of them. While this adds little to the overall gameplay, teaming up with other allies adds flair to these limited fights.

After each fight you’re rated based on how well you maintained your combo meter and fighting style. Taking less hits, maintaining your combo, and using varied attacks increases the amount of experience you’ll earn. Earn enough and players can spend points into one of 6 categories that include combat, gadget tech, gadget skill, Batsuit, Batmobile, and Batmobile weapons. Each one provides unique bonuses that can increase Batman’s health, his gadgets effectiveness, or the performance of the Batmobile.

Batman has an array of new tools but nothing compared to the new multi-takedown tactic, perfect for knocking out up to five targets at once. Other improvements include the voice synthesizer that can lure enemies into traps and the ability to hack drones and turn them against their handlers. However, these enemies are not easy prey; on the contrary, these AI opponents will cover one another, destroy perches, deploying mines, setting up turrets, detecting your detective vision and firebombing vents. During both styles of gameplay you’ll encounter many adversaries such as the medic who revives fallen allies and provides electrical shielding to comrades, heavy mini-gun wielding brutes, drone handlers and enemies that block your detective vision.

Batman: Arkham Knight,Noobfeed,Rocksteady,WB Games,

Speaking of detective vision Arkham Knight has a returned with new updates. Like Arkham Origins, players will rewind crime scenes to understand how important events happened, scan important areas, and bodies, for significant clues and analyze important information regarding criminal activity happening in Gotham.

The campaign is excellently coupled with a series of side quests that are built around stopping other notorious Batman villains such as Penguin, Two Face, and The Riddler. Each one of these missions are centered on a specific gameplay style and theme. The Riddler has players hunting down hidden trophies, interrogating henchmen for trophy locations, completing Batmobile challenges and solving well riddles; Two-Face has him stopping a series of bank robberies in a timed predator challenge; Penguin has players teaming up with Nightwing to stop Penguin’s illegal weapon smuggling business.

Rocksteady has closed the final game in the Arkham series on a high note. While the Arkham Knight remains the low point of the game, the myriad characters and challenges in this dazzling playground, coupled with new game plus and ranked challenges, ensures that players will continue to soar through the skies and drives in the streets of Gotham for hours of entertainment. Batman: Arkham Knight is a satisfying ending to this great series, it’s a shame that once those credits start rolling you’ll know it’s truly over.

Adam Siddiqui, NoobFeed
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General Information

Platform(s): Xbox 360, PS3, PC
Publisher(s): Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
Developer(s): Rocksteady Studios
Genres: Action-adventure
Themes: Batman
Release Date: 2015-06-23

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