I finished Batman: Arkham Asylum last night. The dream is over and it only lasted three days. Too bad. Now that I'm done the game, I don't really feel like the Dark Crusader. Too bad. So I'm back to my training: 20 laps in the pool during lunch, a 25 mile bike ride this morning and Jiu Jitsu in the evening. But before I get back into it here at Building Batman why don't I review the game for? Just a few comments.
I'll do it in a Pro-Con format and start with cons because the good drastically outweighs the bad and so I want to finish on the positive notes:
1) The game was too forgiving. They made this soundtrack and setting that are as creepy as could be. It's really tense BUT because Batman just re-spawns whenever you screw-up, there are no consequences for my actions and therefore I'm not scared. Why did Resident Evil work so well so long ago? Because not only was it scary in all the ways that a scary movie was but if you as the player screwed up there were terrible consequences: you might not have anymore ammo for hours, or maybe you would die and have to start from a point that felt like it was at the very beginning of the game. Batman: Arkham Asylum lacked that. Since I wasn't concerned about any consequences, the tension that they worked so hard to make so good was diffused.
2) The game was very linear. Although it was placed on an island and you could theoretically go anywhere, in actuality there was only ever one path and it was always right in front of you. I'm not asking for a game like Fallout but give the world's greatest detective multiple ways to go about solving a problem.
1) You couldn't have this game without Batman. In many ways, it's not just 'another Batman game' but it's a game about Batman. You couldn't just be anyone with a boomerang. The game actually explores his character.
2) It's not the rogue gallery vs Batman. It must have been so tempting to just trot every Batman character in and say, "Everyone against Batman!" Instead, Batman is stuck in a crazy storm. It's all about him and the Joker. When other villains show up they are there on their own terms and for their own reasons, not just as super-henchmen in the Joker's scheme.
3) Paul Dini wrote it (really the last two just boil down to this).
4) Mark Hamill is amazing.
1 week ago