Batman: Arkham City Review
Xbox 360 | PS3
Batman: Arkham City Box Art
System: PS3, Xbox 360, PC
Dev: Rocksteady
Pub: Warner Bros.
Release: October 18, 2011
Players: 1
Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p Alcohol References, Mild Language, Blood, Suggestive Themes, Use of Tobacco, Violence

Unlike the last two Spider-Man games, with their lack of true web-swinging, Arkham City allows the players to feel that they are actually traveling the way that Batman really would: through the rooftops, gliding from peaks, and grappling the side of a building at the last minute. There was not a single moment in which I felt I was not Batman in this game.

Since we're already on the subject of traveling through the city, I do have to bring up my personal annoyance with Catwoman. While it is acceptable for Batman to use his grappling hooks at great lengths, Catwoman's whip is much shorter; she should not be reach the same things with her whip that Batman can with his grappling hooks. I know this might seem completely petty, but it's one detail that pulled me out of the world that Rocksteady has so painstakingly created for this game. In fact, not even Catwoman's thief vision distracted me this much. With Catwoman's inclusion in the gameplay, however, Rocksteady captures another element that is usually missing from Batman games: the Batman of the comics doesn't usually work alone. But all of this does make me wonder how things will play out once Robin and Nightwing are added into the mission-based gameplay.

Batman: Arkham City Screenshot

A simple list of the voice actors is enough to convince anyone with even the slightest bit of pop culture knowledge that Arkham City is a treat for the ears: Kevin Conroy returns as Batman, Mark Hamill returns as the Joker, and Tara Strong replaces Arleen Sorkin as Harley. But while all of these performances are stellar and unmatched, I have to give credit to some of the new additions to the cast. Corey Burton voices Hugo Strange, Troy Baker doubles as Two-Face, Stana Katic as Talia al Ghul, and probably the most surprising of them all is Nolan North as the Penguin. (I dare anyone to truthfully say they knew it was him without being told.) Mix all of this great voice talent in with the fantastic score, which combines elements from every incarnation of Batman from the 60s television show to the more recent Christopher Nolan universe, and you have an almost surreal amalgamation of the best of Batman audio to set the tone and pacing for Arkham City.

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Admittedly, when I first heard of Arkham City I wanted to sit back and be that cynical comic book guy who refuses to believe in it. I wanted to watch it hit the shelves and then crash and burn. It wasn't because I wished ill of the sequel, it was just that comic book fans have been burned way too many times. But I'm so thankful to be wrong. Batman: Arkham City takes the formula we loved in Arkham Asylum and advances it to a level I would have not thought possible in this medium. In Arkham Asylum, I felt as if I was playing a Batman tale; in Arkham City, every takedown I preform makes me want to scream "I am Batman!" Come on, you can scream it too. You owe it to yourself.

By Matt Walker
CCC Editor-In-Chief

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
4.5
Graphics
Simply put, Arkham City rivals some of the best graphics of this generation.
4.3
Control
Nothing out of the way complex, and very much in line with the original.
4.6
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
evin Conroy once again proves he is the only voice of Batman.
4.5
Play Value
There's so much to do here. Arkham City makes you actually feel like Batman, and you will be glad for it.
4.5
Overall Rating - Must Buy
Not an average. See Rating legend below for a final score breakdown.
Review Rating Legend
0.1 - 1.9 = Avoid 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 3.5 - 3.9 = Good 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair 4.0 - 4.4 = Great 5.0 = The Best

Game Features:

  • Batman: Arkham City delivers a genuinely authentic Batman experience with advanced, compelling gameplay on every level: high-impact street brawls, nail-biting stealth, multifaceted forensic investigation, epic supervillain encounters, and unexpected glimpses into Batman's tortured psychology.
  • Batman faces highly coordinated, simultaneous attacks from every direction as Arkham's gangs bring heavy weapons and all-new A.I. to the fight, but Batman steps it up with twice the number of combat animations and double the range of attacks, counters, and takedowns.
  • Players encounter numerous characters from the Batman universe, including Catwoman, Two-Face, Harley Quinn, Penguin, Hugo Strange, Victor Zsasz, Calendar Man, The Joker, The Riddler, and other iconic characters.
  • Catwoman is a fully playable character in Batman: Arkham City with her own storyline in the main game seamlessly interwoven with Batman's story arc. Her navigation skills, combat moves, and gadgetry have been specifically designed and animated to deliver a fully featured and unique experience.
  • Batman has access to new gadgets such as the Cryptographic Sequencer V2 and Smoke Pellets, as well as new functionality for existing gadgets that expand the range of Batman's abilities without adding extra weight to his Utility Belt.

  • Videos / Game Trailers
    Batman: Arkham City Hugo Strange Reveal Trailer - click to enlarge
    Extended Destiny Trailer
    Batman: Arkham City Re-Branded Trailer  - click to enlarge
    Re-Branded Trailer
    Batman: Arkham City Mr. Freeze Trailer  - click to enlarge
    Mr. Freeze Trailer
    Batman: Arkham City Penguin Trailer - click to enlarge
    Penguin Trailer
    Batman: Arkham City The Riddler Trailer - click to enlarge
    The Riddler Trailer

    Screenshots / Images
    Batman: Arkham City Screenshot - click to enlarge Batman: Arkham City Screenshot - click to enlarge Batman: Arkham City Screenshot - click to enlarge Batman: Arkham City Screenshot - click to enlarge Batman: Arkham City Screenshot - click to enlarge Batman: Arkham City Screenshot - click to enlarge Batman: Arkham City Screenshot - click to enlarge Batman: Arkham City Screenshot - click to enlarge Batman: Arkham City Screenshot - click to enlarge Batman: Arkham City Screenshot - click to enlarge

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