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Review of ‘Batman: Arkham Asylum’

August 5, 2010

You obviously have to be wary with games linked to film franchises, but then again why take any risks these days when metacritic can all but guarantee 90% satisfaction?  More generally, you should be wary about making any assumptions, and here I made the false assumption that this was linked to a film franchise in the first place.  It’s actually linked closely to the original comic book and animated TV series, I am told.  This is good, because you’re just ‘being Batman’, you’re not ‘being Christian Bale being Batman and doing all the things you already know he’ll do because you’ve watched the film, like, five times’.

The original plot is fine, the characterisation is excellent (although does it fit with the Batman mythos that every baddy becomes super fat?), as is the setting.  Why don’t more developers realise that making one place seem like home (whether it’s The Asylum, or Hyrule Field, or Liberty City) is far more effective than forcing us to traipse through a hundred beautiful nowheres?

The artwork and direction are consistently impressive.  The only aspect of the game which I really hope they improve on in the sequel is the combat.  It’s got all the right ingredients, but never feels as fluid as something like Bayonetta.

If you know anything about games, you will have already bought this, so this review is almost entirely redundant, but at the time of writing it seemed preferable to lorem ipsum in bulking up my fledgling site.

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