The highly anticipated video game Batman: Arkham City was released last week and has received incredible reviews and universal acclaim. And while I may not be much of a gamer, I’ll be damned if I wasn’t first in line to pick up my copy.
But then again, if someone put dog shit in a box and slapped a bat logo on it and I’d probably wind up buying it.
Playing Batman: Arkham City truly is a blast.
However, if you are a massive Bat-fan like myself then the experience of getting to grapple and glide around Gotham City in between beating the snot out of thugs and supervillains is nothing short of thrilling and euphoric.
The game’s developers, Rocksteady, followed in the footsteps of their previous hit Batman: Arkham Asylum by hiring legendary Batman scribe Paul Dini to craft the sprawling narrative of Arkham City.
As a result, Dini spins a thrilling yarn that tells an original Batman story while satisfying fanboys by having the Dark Knight clash with dozens of villains from his Rogue’s Gallery.
Joker, Penguin, Two-Face, Poison Ivy, Harley Quinn, Bane, Mr. Freeze, Ra’s al Ghul — the gang’s all here and each character is used brilliantly in a combination of main story and side missions.
The Riddler in particular has a starring role in one of the best side missions by making you run around the bowels of Gotham solving brainteasers and puzzles in order to save civilians from elaborate death traps.
Amazingly, it doesn’t come off as campy at all. In fact, the storyline is done in a very exciting and realistic way, which is pretty impressive considering the character is an obsessive compulsive geek with a question mark fetish.
And did I mention that you get to play as Catwoman? Because you do. And since this is a third person POV video game, you spend pretty much all her missions with this view:
Perfect digital booty aside, the Catwoman missions are great fun, and despite her terrible dialogue (one of the game’s few weak points) they give the player a chance to engage in combat in a much different style than that of Batman.
But in the end, there’s one determining factor that makes playing this game the most enjoyable and exciting thing I’ve done in ages.
You actually get to be the motherf***ing Batman.
Unless you actually are a traumatized billionaire with access to cutting edge military grade gadgetry and willing to devote decades to martial arts and criminology training, then the odds are you’re never going to come close to being like Batman.
But with Arkham City, all you have to do is pop a disc into your video game console and you’re suddenly in the Dark Knight’s boots, cleaning up the streets and ass kicking evil doers with a vengeance, all without leaving the comfort of your home.