No superhero has experienced a greater revitalization over the past decade than Batman.
2008’s “The Dark Knight” grossed $1 billion in worldwide box office revenue and is the highest-rated superhero film of all time on review aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes. Now he is the main character of what is arguably one of the best video games of the year, “Batman: Arkham City.”
The game first puts you into the shoes of Bruce Wayne as he delivers a speech about the crumbling infrastructure of Gotham City. Through a series of events, Wayne is captured but escapes, and puts on the Batsuit to stop the troubles in the newly created prison city known as Arkham City.
A sequel to 2009’s “Batman: Arkham Asylum,” “Arkham City” takes everything that worked from the original game and places them in a new, open-world environment: Batman can go anywhere, from the rooftops to the dark alleys. Along the way, he encounters nearly every classic villain, such as the Joker, Two-Face and Mr. Freeze.
“Arkham City” works due to its complete embrace of the Batman canon, but this should not be a roadblock for those who know next to nothing about the character. The game will explain who all these characters are, though there are too many thrown into one story, causing the plot to lose its momentum about three-quarters of the way through.
With easy to pickup controls, the game is very accessible for gamers who have played similar open-world games, such as “Grand Theft Auto” or “Assassin’s Creed.” You can play this game at your own pace, either going through the main story right away, or branching off to the side missions, which take up many hours of gameplay on their own.
This large, open-ended gameplay can be a problem as many side quests and puzzles are hidden so well it may be nearly impossible to find them.
Still, “Batman: Arkham City” is likely the best example ever of adapting a previously created work to a video game. The creators of the game know what makes Batman popular: he has no superpowers, but uses an array of awesome gadgets and his own detective skills to solve crimes and stop the villains of Gotham City.