Friday, 29 August 2014

Batman: Arkham Origins Wii U Review

Arkham Origins is an odd game . It's not bad, nor is it great, it's simply not as good as the Rocksteady developed games. Where Arkham City pushed the series forward, Origins keeps it in place. There are subtle changes like a larger focus on the Bat-cave, The Bat and a crime scene reconstructing mechanic which is really cool but otherwise it's the same game. This isn't a bad thing though as the core game is amazing, just like Arkham City. 

The story is that a whole bunch of assassins, with A-listers like Bane and B-listers like Electrocutioner are trying to take out Batman during the night of Christmas Eve. Batman has only been at it a couple of years, he hasn't even me the Joker, so it's quite a challenge for him. You'll solve crime scenes, best up henchmen and engage in fantastic boss fights. 

Analysing bullet holes and tracing out a gunfight is deeply entertaining in a CSI kind of way and seeing a young Joker and Batman have their first meeting is hugely enjoyable though lacks a "Some men just want to the watch the world burn moment." As an aside here Troy Baker does a great Joker, he's no Mark Hamill but he's good. Smith's voice is just typical gruff Batman voice but I guess it does the job. 

The GamePad comes in handy as maps and menus are accessible on the fly and the whole game can be played on its screen though you need it displayed on the TV first so you can go into options to enable this feature. Holy annoying design Batman!

There really isn't much else to say about how the game plays, it's Arkham City but with a different scenario. The same goes for the graphics (which are solid but nothing special) and the soundtrack (which is pretty good but again, nothing special). Sadly the multiplayer is absent from the Wii U version so I can't say nowt 'bout that. 

Like I said, it's an odd game. It's good, there's very little bad about it. But the fact it doesn't push the series forward, like Rocksteady did with City, is really irritating. 

Arkham Origins could well be seen as the Bane of the series's reputation, a Joker card in an otherwise classic deck, it really put the Freeze on the trilogies' progression. A pair of "Killer" Croc's on an otherwise sharply dressed man. A Penguin when you wanted a Snicker's. 

But ultimately it's a good game, enjoyable from start to finish and well worth a play but easily missed if you'd rather just wait for Arkham Knight and Rocksteady's return to the developers' chair.

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