I’ve been gone just a single week with the flu, and yet somehow in that short span of time Warner Bros have only goneand announced a new Batman game! That’s titled Arkham Origins! That’s not going to be made by Rocksteady! Wait….what?
So, Warners Bros have officially announced Batman: Arkham Origins, the third game in the massively popular Batman: Arkham franchise. This time around, though, Rocksteady won’t be at the helm, instead developement will be handled by Warner Bros Montreal – Montreal apparently now being the place where every game ever gets made.
In an interesting move Batman: Arkham Origins is going to take place several years before the events of the first two games, featuring a “young and unrefined Batman.”
Some small details regarding the game have appeared via Game Informer, who announced that Batman: Arkham Origins would be the feature of their May cover. According to the first of their coverage on their website, Batman is not just starting out as a crime-fighter at the beginning of the game, but up until this point in his career the only people he has fought have been ordinary criminals. Origins will chart what happens to Batman when he encounters supervillains for the first time, including a certain Oswold Cobblepot, who is yet to get his famous alias. In this particuilar case classic Batman baddie the Black Mask has put a price on Batman’s head, forcing him to battle it out with various characters over the course of Christmas Eve, including Deathstroke.
According to Game Informer’s feature Batman: Arkham Origins will stick with the open-world formula of the last game, but now there’ll be even more space to explore – twice that of Arkham City, to be more specific. The entire area which became a walled-off prison in the last game still exists, but now it’s called Old Gotham and will be radically different to what we saw in Arkham City. Meanwhile cross the bridge to New Gotham and you can expect massive skyscrapers to provide plenty of opportunities for some gliding fun. Scattered around the city will be a variety of side-quests that you can tackle, including numerous crime-scenes which will make use of improved detective gameplay mechanics.
So, there’s a lot to take in, here. The obvious initial concern for most is that it’s a new developer at the helm, and as we all know gamers aren’t always happy with new. This doesn’t concern me too much, though, mostly because all the major groundwork is already there, so it’d be pretty hard for Warner Bros Montreal to cock it up. Mind you, studios have managed it before. My bigger concern is that a new studio taking over may be the first signs of Warner Bros wanting to turn Batman into an annual franchise, alternating between developers like the Call of Duty series does.
My other concern is a simple one: why would I want to play an unrefined Batman? I loved the past two games because they let me play as Batman, a Batman at the peak of his abilities. I honestly struggle to see why I would want to play as a Batman that’s still learning, and hasn’t yet developed his arsenal of gadgets and skills. IN fact, I’m generally just unsure of it being a prequel, though I do appreciate the choice to have the Black Mask as the primary villain rather than going down the route of bringing back the Joker.
And if I’m just going to complain about stuff, then I’m a little disapointed that Origins isn’t going back to the structure of the first game. I enjoyed exploring massive world of Arkham City, but I still feel that the Metroidvania approach of the first game suited the gameplay more.
These, though, are utterly unfounded concerns of mine. We know relatively little about the game, after all. Except the release date. We know that. Warner Bros have announced that Batman: Arkham Origins will release worldwide on October 25th for Playstation 3, PC, Xbox 360 and Wii U. No mention of nezt-gen consoles.