100 of 111 people found the following review helpful
on August 25, 2009
For years and years, gamers (myself included) have played many different Batman video games and have only been let down time after time.
Now, Batman: Arkham Asylum IS that Batman game that you have always wanted to play.
It satisfies every part of you Batman desires and really gives you the feeling that you ARE Batman.
From the strength and power to the gadgets to the stealth and surprise you can bring toward your enemy, it is quite a marvel that a game developer finally got it right.
Thank you Rocksteady!
I do not want to give away any spoilers from the game so the plot is really basic and simple.
The Joker has taken total control over Arkham island and Batman needs to hunt him down to stop him, but not without going through many of Batman's familiar villians in the process.
Batman's gadgets come in handy often, most of the time you will be using his 'detective mode' which is built into the cowl and gives you the ability to see important items in the room and clues to lead you in the right direction.
There will be some moments where you find yourself just playing with all of Batman' gadgets for 10-15 minutes because there are so many of them to play with. (It feeds your inner dork so it's okay!)
Gameplay mechanics are solid and I have yet to find a defect in them or any glitches.
Fighting is very enjoyable, because you can be surrounded by 6-10 enemies and everytime an enemy is about to attack you hit the counter-attack button and continue to fight off all of them at once. Very fun.
The graphics are amazing and highly detailed like you would expect from a PS3.
Voice-over work is superb and Mark Hamill, as The Joker, really steals the show. If they gave out Oscars for Best Video Game Voice-Over Performance then Hamill would easily win it for this game!
All in all, Batman games have been so poor for so long, it is exciting to see a Batman game done right and this is worthy of a $60 purchase.
Go and get it and play it with the lights off in the dark with the sound blasting.
56 of 64 people found the following review helpful
on August 27, 2009
After playing this game, you'll forget all of the other bad comic book in the past.
This is a spooky, creepy, gothic-style sand-box where you play the real Batman. Real in that he can't jump 20 ft high, but rely on his gadgets, skill and intellect to avoid, escape and hunt enemies, find important evidence and scout locations. The fighting mechanics are easy that even a 10 years old child can use it, but the difficulty of using it increases where you have to use some of Batman's gadgets to take down larger opponents. At one of several moments, I had to jump into a group of enemies to get to a location. At first I was hesitant, but then I remember how easy it can be if I remember how to deal with each kind of enemy. First, I see what kind of enemies their are and plan my onslaught. To test and hone-in you fighting skills, you have challenges outside the main game to practice on.
It's not just a button-smashing game, its also a puzzler. You can switch into 'detective mode' to find evidence, trophies and solve environmental riddles as well as figure out how to get to one place to another.
I beat the game in 10 hours, but worth going back to try on harder challenging levels as well as to complete the entire game. Puzzles were very cleaver. I had trouble with a certain type of puzzle that I decided to completely ignore them. Now, I have figured it's skillful ways and hitting myself for not thinking of it earlier.
Two things I hated were the fact that I couldn't get to certain locations and be able to get things without the upgrades I got later. The next problem of mine is that the game ended where Batman goes back to Gotham City.
One actual problem is the Scarecrow challenges. The camera angles and controls aren't that responsive verses the way the main game version. I liked them at first to give me a break from the main story line's gameplay, but became increasingly annoying when trying to time an action. It took me several times pressing on the buttons to have it work.
I can say, Batman Arkham Asylum is one of the best games I've ever purchased.
PARENTS: If your thinking of purchasing this game for your kids, here is what to expect. Light or mild sexual themes. Poison Ivy is presented in a seductive way and mild innuendos from criminals stating, "I wouldn't mine playing doctor with her."
Violence is suggestive. The locations have skulls and bones. Bodies lying in the floor or hang on their limbs(Batman only knocks out his opponents or left to their end, while criminals kill). No gory images if you could on a little blood dripping of Batman's mouth after a hit. No bad language. Basically, if you've watch or seen the animated series then you pretty much see what level of sex and violence it has.
33 of 38 people found the following review helpful
on November 30, 2009
It's been said that Arkham Asylum is the "best batman game" made thus far and whoever said that, was right. This game is fun, no doubt. Playing the game is the closest one can get to actually being the Batman. The freeflow battle system is joyous (once mastered) and the gadgets can be used in fun and innovative ways to solve the puzzles that are presented in the game.
The graphics are very smooth and I didn't notice any frame rate issues. Absolutely everything looks breath taking, from the batarangs to the thugs upon that Batman wantonly stomps. The sound design is perfect: nothing is too loud or too soft and the sound effects don't sound out of place at all.
The only real problem i have with the game is it's length. I beat the game in two sittings in a total of about 8.5 hours. Sure there are things to do after the game is finished, but hunting for trophies and riddles gets old real fast and unless you're the OCD type who has to finish every little thing, bear that in mind.
Arkham Asylum is a good game with a great story but is kind of short.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on November 28, 2009
From Rocksteady studios, who's only previous credit comes in the form of 2006's budget title Urban Chaos Riot Response, comes Batman: Arkham Asylum. While Batman: Arkham Asylum might not be perfect, but it's definitely the best game to feature the Caped Crusader.
If you're a fan of the Batman universe, you'll fall in love with the story. The story is penned by Paul Dini, a former producer and writer for Batman: The Animated series, and a man who clearly knows him his Batman. The story picks up just as the Dark Knight has captured The Joker, and is delivering him to the famed Gotham madhouse. Batman notices something suspicious, however, as The Joker didn't put up much of a fight, and, alas, he is quite right. When The Joker arrives at Arkham, all hell breaks loose, and he's the man behind it all. The events of the game will follow Batman's night in the asylum as he tries to put an end to The Joker's rampage. The plot throws in quite a number of characters from the Batman universe, and even the few who aren't included are referenced. During your adventures in the madhouse, you can find a ton of material about pretty much all of the significant characters in the Batman mythos from their background on down to their first comic book appearance. The game's main plot is fully featured as is, and all the extras will be sure to please any comic book fan.
Arkham Asylum offers quite a number of gameplay elements, and pulls them off well. To put the core experience in simple terms; it's a lot like a Metroid game. You'll venture through the asylum, eager to explore as much as you can until you find a certain key item. You then use said item to venture further into the environment.
But of course, what you do along the way is very important, and luckily Arkham Asylum has quite a variety of activities. To survive the Asylum with as many goodies in tow as possible, you'll have to fight, sneak, inspect, and explore. Arkham Asylum truly packs a lot of variety, but unfortunately falls for the old "jack of all trades, master of none" type deal.
Combat and sneaking are both entertaining, and especially fun to watch, the problem is, however, it takes a while for either of these systems to get especially deep.
The game's Freeflow combat system only consists of a few basic button presses at the start of the game, and one can easily dispatch most foes while just sticking to those few button presses; if you want to make things a little more complex, you'll pretty much only be doing it for the extra points.
The stealth system falls in the same category. It's fun, but it's basic, you really only need your few basic takedowns and gadgets, and anything you do beyond that is superfluous.
Exploration, however, is the meat of this game's fun factor. Arkham Asylum is huge, and at any given time you'll have a fair amount of free reign in terms of areas to explore. But what drives you to want to search every nook and cranny of the Asylum are the 240 riddles one Edward Nigma has set up for you around Arkham Island. These riddles will range from simply platforming to find question mark icons the Riddler has scattered about, or actually solving some riddles that can range from simple to devilishly tricky. Venturing throughout the island with all of Batman's gadgets is fun enough as is, but these riddles really serve to flesh out your experience.
The game also features 8 Challenge Maps, unlocked by either progressing through the game, or solving riddles. These Challenge Maps recreate certain fighting, and stealth sequences found throughout the game, and each map consists of one round of brawling, and one of sneaking. Each map also features a ridiculously tricky "Extreme" mode counterpart which are sure to keep diehard fans occupied for a while. Your scores on each Challenge Map are also uploaded to online leaderboards, which is a nice touch for the particularly competitive players out there. Also, since I'm doing this review for the Playstation 3 version of the game, it's also worth noting that it features a playable Joker on the Challenge Maps, who is quite fun to tinker around with, but at the end of the day simply isn't cut out for the job as the Caped Crusader is.
The graphics in Arkham Asylum are a mixed bag. The environment itself is beautiful, and surprisingly varied. The animations are superb as well, especially for Batman's Freeflow combat segments, which you might at first glance think is choreographed. But, unfortunately, not everything is so hot in the graphics department. For one, the character models, while stylized, need some work, and the animations for all non-Batman characters are stiff. But still, this game has a perfectly good graphics department.
The sound on the other hand, is excellent. The game features awesome sound design, which is masterfully showcased throughout the Scarecrow segments of the game, and the sound effects as a whole are all very well done. What steals the show, though, are the voice talents. Much of the voice cast from Batman: The Animated series returns, and reprise their respective roles in top form, the standout being Mark Hamill's terrific performance as The Joker.
The story mode in Arkham Asylum will last you about 10-12 hours if you try to get through while minimally working on riddles. If you do choose to pursue a good portion of the riddles, you'll likely see a pretty huge increase in the number of hours you'll sink in. The Challenge Maps also provide for a good bit of entertainment, and as previously stated, will be especially addicting for the perfectionist gamers out there.
Arkham Asylum is a great game, it combines tons of different gameplay elements fairly well, has a great story, plenty of extras, good production values, and a surprisingly high replay value. While there are some flaws, mainly in the form of certain gameplay elements that are too basic, and some minor graphical issues, Batman Arkham Asylum is easily the Bat's best video game adventure. Here it is: the best game of this summer. If you're a fan of action adventure games, or of the Batman universe, you owe it to yourself to check out Batman: Arkham Asylum.
21 of 26 people found the following review helpful
on August 26, 2009
Batman: Arkham Asylum is the best Batman game ever made. But that is not the reason that you should buy it. You should stop what you are doing and get this game immediately because it is one of, if not the best, game of the year. It excels in every category, and is alot of fun to play, a quality that is fast fading in this modern gaming age.
The game starts off with you escorting the Joker back to his home away from home in Arkham Asylum. Just before he can be safely stored in his padded room, all hell breaks loose and you are trapped on an island filled with your fiercest foes. The story only gets better from there, and you see villans ranging from Harley Quinn, to the Scarecrow in some of the most psycologicaly thrilling levels since Eternal Darkness.
The Graphics are gorgeous. Period. The voice acting is so good I go to geek heaven every time I hear Mark Hamill give us the greatest Joker laugh ever concieved. Many of the voice actors from the excellent Batman: The Animated Series reprise their roles in this game to great effect. Paul Dini penned the excellent story so have no fear, you will not be rolling your eyes at cliched dialogue the entire game. Think of this as one of the best episodes of the animated series ever.
As I stated in my title You are the Dark Knight, and it has never been this enjoyable. As Batman, you have at your disposal a wide array of gadgets ranging from your standard issue Batarang, to grappling hook, and blasting gel. Every item has a unique function, and often has combat applications for the more adventurous players. Which brings me to the combat. As Batman you have the ability to jump into a group of ten thugs and put generations of Jet Li and Jackie Chan movies to shame. After a few fights you should have the basic mechanics down, and by the time you have logged in a couple of hours you will be racking up 20 hit combos. There are times however, when you won't be able to charge into battle, but will need to use stealth, and badass scare tactics to defeat the more heavily armed foes. There are few things as satisfying as swooping down from the ceiling, tying your foe up, and leaving him to swing, scaring the crap out of the rest of his friends while the Joker taunts his men for their incompetence.
While the combat is fantastic, the area of the game that most impressed me was the exploration. In games past exploration was barely a sidequest and treated more as a distraction for after you had completed the game. In Arkham Asylum you have a ton of interesting things to find from awesome recordings of the villans psych evaluations to engravings chronicling Amadeus Arkhams slow descent into madness. While most games make you turn over every rock and look in every cranny in AA you can find maps that point out the approximate location of the items. And once you find said secrets you are rewarded with extra experience to boost your abilities.
The one gripe I have with the game is that you do not have a jump button. You jump automatically when you reach a ledge. While this seems like it would be a hindrance, in many case it is easier than a jump button. There are a couple of times I wished I had more control over my jump, but not to the point that it affected my performance.
The playstation three version allows you to use the joker in the challenge maps so if you own a ps3 get this for that.
This is an incredible game, and you owe it to yourself to play it.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on March 18, 2010
I too am tempted to label this game as "definitive"; it's easily, quite clearly, almost overwhelmingly, THE best Batman game to date and better than some of the movies. You get to play Batman from a third or more second person perspective, which works great for the game. The gameplay is very well designed with full freedom to move and look around; you never feel inhibited in your exploration of the island. Even when you're gliding from place to place, you have control of the character, not game-imposed limitations of perspective or design. In addition to henchmen, escaped lunatics, and the more celebrated inmates to take down, there are many riddles to solve, and island secrets to discover, that will keep you busy for many, many hours of fun - even more if you don't use Riddler's maps.
Since it's only set at Arkham Asylum, engrossing as that may be, I can't exactly call the game definitive. But, the flexible RPG freedom should serve as the model for future Batman games, for sure. The graphics are terrific as well, especially character graphics. I did get the sense that disc compression may have been optimized for the limitations of the XBox version, rather than the PS3's BD disc capacity, which is 5x more roomy than DVD, as blocking and posterization are noticably problematic from time to time. But, the graphics still looked great overall, even at the unforgiving front projection screen size I played on. I also appreciated the decision to include a brightness adjustment for aligning your display's calibration with the unique disc encode without having to blindly adjust your TV settings themselves - I wish all games (and movies for that matter) would include the same.
My only real criticism of the game is with the bosses. Most were just far too easy, especially The Scarecrow, which also suffered a very limited remote perspective play style that was completely out of place with the rest of the game. Even if Batman was supposed to be under the influence of fear toxin, it still felt a little lazy. I personally feel that having clearly defined boss stages, where you're trapped in a room against some tough opponent is more cheaply unimaginitive than homage to games of yesteryear. To me, such limited flexibility in gameplay isn't nearly as fun as the RPG type style that the majority of this game conforms to. That is unless it's done really well like in Uncharted 2, where you don't even associate the challenge as being a boss type stage.
So, the game isn't pefect. For parents who might be reading, it's also not very appropriate for young audiences. But for Batman fans old enough to handle death and a foul word or two and who are able to forgive the gameplays few inconsistencies, this game is simply one you have to play through at least once - it's that good. While it's definitely more challenging at the hard difficulty, the story and dialogue isn't quite as interesting on my second pass though, unlike Uncharted 2, which after 3 plays through the storymode, was still just as fun for the story and script alone. Maybe if I set it aside for a few months, it'll seem fresh again - though by then part two should be knocking at the door. Can't wait!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on December 8, 2010
All the other reviews are correct in their praise of this game. It is amazing beyond a shadow of a doubt. I have been waiting years for a game like this to come out, and this far surpassed my expectations.
However, there seems to be a problem that many people are having: the corrupt save game data bug.
17% into the game, I was just about to kill some joker goons when all of the sudden, I get an error message on the screen saying my save data is corrupted and needs to be erased in order for me to play the game. I am then thrown out of the game and booted to the PS3 XMB. What? You mean to tell me that I'm going to have to do everything I've done all over again? Especially considering that I was taking the time to solve riddles and collect trophies? This is ridiculous.
Some will say, "well, you shouldn't have turned the game off while the autosave icon was flashing," but I was in the middle of playing when it happened. I have never turned the game off when the save icon was flashing. I have played video games since I was 3 years old and am now 21; I think I've learned that one already.
Upon this happening, I searched on google to find if others were having similar problems, and to my unsurprise, they were. Some people were saying they got through 90% when it happened. Some were saying it kept happening to them over and over at the same point in the game. And, the kicker is that it is reported happening on EVERY version (PC, PS3, XBOX 360).
Sure, I could start another save file, but it would take me a leap of faith to play this game knowing that I could have to restart at any moment. I am just not willing to do that, as it is extremely frustrating and a waste of time. Up until this mishap, I loved this game. The gameplay is excellent, but I'm just not sure that I can love it anymore. If you don't care about this issue and are willing to risk losing all your data on the playthrough, then maybe this won't bother you. MAYBE You'll love this game even though you may have to start over a couple of times. But to me, it's not worth it, and I know that there are others out there who would feel the same as I do. There are other good games other than Batman that I still haven't played. Red Dead, Demon's Souls, Ratchet and Clank, 3D Dot game heroes...even Black Ops. I'll move on to them instead.
Overall, this is extremely disheartening for me and ultimately, a let down. I guess I'll have to wait until "Batman: Arkham City" is released. Big shame...
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on May 16, 2010
Fun game, controls are little wonky at first. After playing Assassins Creed 2 then playing this it was kind of a let down since I heard this was so great. I liked AC2 better. There are certain areas that Batman should be able to climb but cant because it would be to easy for the scene. Overall its fun.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on December 12, 2010
There have been some good, bad, and indifferent Batman games over the years. I'm pleased to say that Arkham Asylum falls under 'good'. As a matter of fact it's the best Batman game yet.
With the Joker on his way to the gloomy nuthouse it's safe to say that he's not going to be a problem anymore right? Wrong! He deliberately manipulated Batman and many others in order to get inside the asylum and execute an outrageous plan of mayhem and death that involves some of Bats' most famous foes. A long hallucination scene induced by Scarecrow's poison is the highlight of the game.
As Batman you have to explore every murky corner of the island from long-forgotten caves and sewers to the high-security penitentiary. There are plenty of thugs and convicts along the way that need beating up and pulverized as well as 240 Riddler challenges. It's not particularly hard but there are some parts of the game that will have you tearing your hair out in frustration and absolutely hooked until you beat it. There's also loads of trophies and some DLC for those who need to get more out of it.
Kevin Conroy and Mark Hamil return as Batman and the Joker. To me, and to most people, Conroy IS the voice of Batman. Forget the nobody who has taken over in recent years with poor interpretations like The Batman, and Batman: The Brave and the Bold. If it's not Conroy, it's just not right.
However, the only real complaint (and it's a big one) I have of the game is a common flaw among all video games these days. The X button just has to many functions, often resulting in Batman doing something you don't want him to do, which can lead to death. This is especially infuriating during the Joker Challenge matches.
Adrenaline-fuelled fight scenes
Harley Quinn is gorgeous
Not much of the Batmobile
Lasting Appeal B
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on August 1, 2010
I love the Dark Knight. He's my favorite comic book character. I know, a lot of people say Batman is their favorite, but I really am an all- out Bat-nut. I have more than 100 Batman graphic novels on my bookshelf. I've read just about every Batman story ever written. I'd like to think I'm a tough critic when it comes to all things Batman. Without question, Batman: Arkham Asylum is the best game based on a comic book and more true to the Dark Knight than any videogame, TV show, or movie. It's better than a lot of Batman comics to boot.
Though there is some combat, the focus is on Batman's stealth abilities and his detective skills. Rocksteady got every aspect of the big bad Bat right -- from his use of gadgets, to his intellect, to his unwavering will to pummel evil into submission. This game has references to Calendar Man and Maxie Zeus, along with a great cameo by Clayface and an amazing performance by Mark Hamill as the Joker. Top to bottom this is an amazing piece of work and a real tribute to one of comics' greatest characters.
What I loved, is that Arkham Asylum doesn't get tied down with traditional boss battles. Sure, there are goons to smack around and some of the bosses are of the more typical game variety, but there are many you don't truly fight. I won't spoil any of these moments, but, as is the case in the comics, often the real challenge is getting to the enemy. Once Batman is upon them, it's pretty much a foregone conclusion that he's going to win. Games in the past tried to force Batman into these ridiculous situations where the Riddler or Penguin are somehow combat equals with the Dark Knight. There's not a single boss battle in Arkham Asylum where I thought, "This is totally out of character."
My gripes are minor. Batman can sometimes still look a bit awkward when he runs into parts of the environment, the AI should be much better for a stealth-heavy game and the Killer Croc sequence is long and repetitive. But otherwise, this is one of the best games I've played this year.