Graphics:
8.0
Gameplay:
7.3
Sound:
7.6
Control:
8.1
Replay Value:
7.9
Overall Rating:
7.7
Online Gameplay:
Not Rated
Publisher:
Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
Developer:
Warner Bros. Games Montreal
Number Of Players:
1-4
Genre:
Action
Release Date:
October 25, 2013


Batman: Arkham Origins is one of those games that feels like it has a split personality. On the one hand, it features the dark yet oddly attractive style that is unique to the Batman character; on the other, it’s like dealing with a cocky individual who knows he has skills, but isn’t always willing to prove it. In other words, while the latest Batman effort is undoubtedly a solid, entertaining game, it lacks that “wow” factor we enjoyed in previous iterations. Maybe it’s because we’re not sensing anything new and the stakes are higher with each new entry…?

Strangely, one feels somewhat underwhelmed right from the start. The graphics are good but for whatever reason, I’m not anywhere near as impressed as I was with Rocksteady’s productions (remember, Warner Bros. Montreal handled this game). The animations are wonderfully fluid, most of the special effects are slick and refined, and the character modeling is awesome. But really, it’s the design that I find seriously lacking, as the so-called open-world setting just doesn’t cut the mustard in my eyes. Plus, they superimposed a lot of linear plot-advancing missions over a pseudo-sandbox format and frankly, it doesn’t work well.

The sound benefits from a decent yet surprisingly sparse soundtrack, and a set of accomplished effects that add a sense of urgency to every situation. The voice actors (particularly Troy Baker and Roger Craig Smith) do a great job with the admittedly amateur-ish writing and overall, the audio presents us with an engaging atmosphere that is very reminiscent of the comics. More could’ve been done with the music and some of the scenes are just a tad too hammy for my liking, but that’s okay. We accept a certain level of cheesiness when it comes to superheroes, don’t we? The technical aspects are good throughout, but not advanced enough to blow you away.

Here’s the premise— Villain Black Mask has put a $50 million bounty on the Caped Crusader’s head and as a result, eight super-villains have come to Gotham in an attempt to cash in. As you might expect, Batman is besieged on all sides by freakish enemies, which means the player must always be vigilant. Vigilantes bein’ vigilant, right? Get it? …okay, moving on; the game features well-planned pacing that allows you to familiarize yourself with Batman’s skills and gizmos. Such pacing adds a sense of balance to the adventure, but I really wish our surroundings were less…bland.