BAT­MAN: ARKHAM CITY

Herald Sun - Switched On - - Games -

PC, PS3, Xbox 360 Out: Spring 2011 The Dark Knight has been the star of some pretty aw­ful video games through­out the years, but 2009’s Bat­man: Arkham Asy­lum was an ex­cep­tion: a clev­erly crafted ac­tion ad­ven­ture that of­fered play­ers hand-to-hand com­bat, mys­ter­ies to solve and a util­ity belt crammed with gadgets.

Arkham City, its se­quel, is promis­ing all that and more.

The Caped Cru­sader’s lat­est ad­ven­ture sees Gotham City’s most de­vi­ous crim­i­nals re­lo­cated into the heart of the me­trop­o­lis.

In­cum­bent Mayor Quincy Sharp has cor­doned off a sec­tion of the city’s slums for the likes of the Joker and the Rid­dler to run wild away from the gen­eral pop­u­lace, but Bat­man is forced to in­ter­vene when Two-Face de­vises a plan to ex­e­cute Cat­woman.

While the pre­vi­ous game drip-fed play­ers with Bat gadgets as they pro­gressed, Arkham City hands over the full com­ple­ment of Bat-a-ma­jigs from the get-go and thrusts them into a sprawl­ing cityscape with dan­ger lurk­ing around ev­ery corner.

Each gad­get can be up­graded with new ca­pa­bil­i­ties and, in or­der to quickly tra­verse a game world five times the size of the pre­vi­ous game, Bat­man is able to fly us­ing a mo­men­tum­based glid­ing sys­tem.

Vil­lains will be the sub­jects of multi-faceted sub-quests, giv­ing the game more of a free-form nar­ra­tive feel.

With the next Christo­pher Nolan-di­rected Bat­man film not out un­til well into 2012, Bat­man: Arkham City will be just the tonic for hun­gry Dark Knight fans when it’s launched later this year.

TRIS­TAN OGILVIE

Big­ger and bet­ter: be pre­pared for the new Bat­man game.

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