Joey Sack ‘17 / Emertainment Monthly Staff Writer
The hype surrounding Batman: Arkham Knight has been building since its announcement back in March, with news about the amount of detail in all of the character models, the design of Gotham, and, most importantly, the importance of the Batmobile. Now, we have our first look at where all of that detail goes into with the new trailer for Batman: Arkham Knight, which features gameplay footage of the game for the first time. So let’s take a look at the world that Batman: Arkham fans will be jumping back into this fall.
The trailer opens with shots of the Gotham City that players will be exploring, along with the same threat by Scarecrow from the announcement trailer, but with no special effects altering his voice. We see glimpses of Dr. Jonathan Crane, and can see that the syringes on his hand are noticeably shorter than they were his Arkham Asylum appearance, and they’re not connected to his fingers this time. Scarecrow warns that “tonight, Gotham falls, a city of fear rises,” which not only announces his intentions but also makes a reference to a couple Easter eggs from Arkham City: the password to enter Crane’s boat in Arkham City, “City of Terror,” and one of Scarecrow’s cryptic radio messages, when decoded, reads “Fear will tear Gotham City to shreds.”
After Crane’s warning, we see the Bat signal light up in the sky above Gotham, Batman suiting up, criminals wreaking havoc, and we even see Two-Face with the Penguin. This is indicative of the fact that all of Batman’s major rogues are joining forces to kill the Bat once and for all.
There are then several short clips of events and activities in the game: first, we see shots of the Batmobile revving up before driving through what appears to be Gotham City’s Chinatown. We see shots of Batman beating up thugs and ejecting from the Batmobile, as well as giving us glimpses of things you can do with the vehicle of choice for the World’s Greatest Detective: shoot missiles, plow through anything in its wake, and drive on ceilings and walls. It shows that Rocksteady isn’t messing around when they say that they want to make you feel like the Batman; from just this short exposure, you get a taste of what’s to come; you can feel the superhero-charged awesomeness radiating off of this trailer. The trailer ends with Batman running from a barrage of bullets, and then we see the Arkham Knight in action for the first time, and hear him say, “There is no savior. No more hope. No more Batman.”
This trailer reiterates the chaos that will reign in Arkham Knight providing a major challenge for the Caped Crusader. The enemies interact more with the environment in this game than in any other Arkham game before it. They turn over cars and create all-around disorder in the streets, a departure from the previous installments where, admittedly, the thugs would often just stand around waiting for Batman to swoop in and kick their asses. The graphics of the actual gameplay, albeit shown in short clips, look crisper and more lifelike than ever before.
More importantly, we finally get to see the mysterious Arkham Knight in action, as well as hear his voice for the first time. He doesn’t sound like any character that we’ve seen in the games so far, which fits with Rocksteady’s claim that this militaristic version of Batman is a new character written especially for the game. The image of Batman running from an enemy’s barrage of bullets and being knocked to the ground by that same enemy sends a clear message: the Caped Crusader may have met his match.
One thing to bring up about this trailer is that, while the snippets of gameplay that we get to see are great, the way the scenes are cut together makes it difficult to really let all of the improvements from the last games sink in; you really have to pay attention to feel like saying “wow, that’s a big upgrade.” Also, some of the scenes look more like the cutscenes that you will run into throughout the game, instead of actual gameplay, though with San Diego Comic Con and the E3 convention coming up, it’s likely that Rocksteady is keeping the big stuff under wraps until then.
Batman: Arkham Knight is expected to be released on October 14th, 2014, on the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. People who pre-order the game can play as Harley Quinn. Prepare to become the Batman.