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Batman returns to the Arkham Asylum

tech reviews Updated: Aug 12, 2011 11:17 IST

Hindustan Times
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Release Date: 18th October, 2011

Yes! Batman is back with

Batman: Arkham City

, the latest action-adventure stealth game and the sequel to

Batman: Arkham Asylum

. The game is developed by Rocksteady Studios and will be published by Warner Bros.

Like the previous edition, this one too is an open world action video game. The story of Arkham City is set one year after Arkham Asylum, where, Quincy Sharp, has taken the credit for stopping the Joker and used this deed to become the mayor of Gotham City. With both the Arkham and Blackgate prisons in no condition to hold prisoners, Sharp buys a land and erects Arkham City. Using Tyger, a private military group to patrol the walls of Arkham City, he brings in all the prisoners. The prisoners are allowed to roam freely as long as they do not try to escape the city. Hugo Strange, a psychiatrist, is appointed to oversee the city but Strange seems to have his own evil plans. The plot has been brilliantly built on the intense atmosphere that was initially created in Arkham Asylum.

The difference, though, lies in the sheer size of area available for gameplay. Arkham City is five times the size of Arkham Asylum, giving ample space and freedom for Batman to roam. The game does justice to what being a Batman means i.e. having all the high tech gadgets and more than everything else, the ability to wander the entire city without any limitations. Speaking of which, Batman can use his ability to glide continuously using his cape to perform a nose-dive to build speed and momentum. The developers say that, once mastered, Batman can glide through the entire city without keeping a foot on the ground. Batman also retains all his gadgets from Arkham Asylum and time has seen them undergo an upgrade. The previous gadgets now possess new capabilities while some new gadgets, like the smoke bomb, have been added.


Since it was found that the “Detective Mode” was extensively used in Arkham Asylum to complete the game, the developers this time have presented the Detective Mode with a twist. The Detective Mode now acts like an augmented reality mode. Instead of letting players see the world, the mode now will be used as an instrument to scan the area for thugs and to identify clues in the surroundings. The game has perfectly combined third person combat with stealth action-adventure. Batman can now battle upto 25 to 30 thugs and can perform a whole new set of punch and kick combos to finish them off. The game also lets you sneak up on your enemies and perform stealth attacks on them. Using his ability to glide, his combat skills, stealth attacks and the detective mode. The player roams the entire city to complete Batman’s primary mission. The game also sees the inclusion of a lot of puzzles that form an integral part of the secondary mission.

The game begins when Two-face tries to publicly execute Catwoman. And we all know what happens next, don’t we? Batman enters the building! Batman, for the safety of Gotham city and to save Catwoman, plunges right into the action. Time for us too to dive into it, isn't it?

The other playable characters include Catwoman and Robin. Catwoman is the “thief” in the game who has her own set of moves and, trust me, they are quite remarkable to watch. Her moves are more acrobatic and she has her own set of gadgets and weapons like claws, whips and bolas. She also gets the “Thief Vision” which helps her locate items for stealing. Robin is available to play in challenge maps.

After watching the trailer and having played the demo version, this Batman game is surely one of my most awaited games in 2011. A collector’s edition is also in the offing.

The cast of this edition of Batman game - Batman, Catwoman, Two-Face, Riddler, The Joker, Harley Quinn, Dr. Hugo Strange and more. You don’t expect me to give away all the fun, do you?