I was a fan of these games when they came out on the PS3, but hated Origins after playing it for three hours due to technical issues and constant crashing. Arkham Knight looked good but after the bad taste Origins left in my mouth I didn't bother checking it out and left it for later.
Years later, I repurchased Asylum and City on GOG, and the games, with the added 60fps framerate and higher resolution, are much more fun to play.
Arkham Asylum is a very fun self-contained Batman story, and is both excellent for newcomers to the adventures of the caped crusader and fans alike. Combat is simple and fun, exploration for Riddler's trophies allows you to appreciate the work put in to the enviroments, and the art design is a perfect balance between the gothic nature of the comics and grounded realism. The story is simple and doesn't add much to Batman's conflict with some of his notable foes, which is perfectly fine to be honest.
The game's most noted problems are the weak boss fights and stiff acting when Batman interacts with minor characters. They don't necessarily detract from the fun experience the game is as a whole, but are noticeable once you have to defeat a Bane variant boss fight for the umpteenth time, or just waves of goons with a rogue in the background being annoying.
Overwall, Arkham Asylum is still an example of a no nonsense game that's fun to both experience it's world and story, and picking up all the Riddler collectibles isn't too much of a pain as it would later become in the series. I still highly recommend playing it.
Arkham City is one of those games that gives me goosebumps. Rocksteady really put in a lot of work and effort into cranking up the Batman experience to 11. The visuals have slightly improved, Arkham City has a cold and menacing vibe to it, combat is more varied and refined, the orchestral soundtrack, and the improvements on voice acting make this an example on how great a proper AAA game can be. The story, whilst a bit spotty in some areas, is intriguing and intense, as Batman has to deal with all sorts of threats from more villains than Asylum could allow. The boss fights have been improved, and the world has more sights to see and mess around in.
My major problem with Arkham City would probably be Riddler's side content being a bit overdone for my liking, making a 100% run a chore in my opinion, and the Catwoman segments. I did like the potential of playing some parts of the game as her, but her segments felt vapid and didn't add anything interesting to the story.
Speaking of not adding much, I believe Harley Quinn's Revenge has to be one of the most dissapointing DLCs I've played. It adds a playable mini campaign where you play half of it as Robin and the other half as Batman, but doesn't do anything interesting or even give us an extra proper boss fight. I don't know, it feels like a big afterthought that was either rushed or forced on to justify people getting the DLC content.
Aside from that, I believe Arkham City is a a good sequel and improves upon many aspects of it's predecessor. However, I can only recommend it if you enjoyed Asylum as it's not as much of a self contained adventure.
After really enjoying my time again with both of these games, I might give Origins a second chance soon, and maybe give Arkham Kinght a try aswell later down the line.
- I recently finished Batman: Arkham City. How did it miss out on this gem the last 10 years?
- The Batman Arkham Series is Utterly Phenomenal
- Batman: Arkham
More about Gaming NewsPost: "Batman: Arkham Asylum and Arkham City (PC). Still absolute masterpieces." specifically for the game Gaming News. Other useful information about this game:
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