Grave Gamer News & Views — wb montreal

Arkham Origins: New Trailer, Screens, and Playable Character This...

Arkham Origins: New Trailer, Screens, and Playable Character

This fine day has brought with it more than enough news for true fans of the Caped Crusader to go completely bat-shit over.

First up, a full trailer depicting an eloquent exchange of fists between Batman and hired killer Deathstroke.  Other personalities that make the cut – and Bruce’s life infinitely harder – are Deadshot, the marksmen that never misses, and Black Mask, the criminal ringleader that’s turned Gotham into a murder circus.  Gameplay doesn’t make a cameo, unfortunately, what with the whole trailer being fancy, schmancy CGI, so your eyes will have to chow down on the screens above for now.

Pre-ordering a copy of Batman: Arkham Origins scores you the inclusion of Slade “Deathstroke” Wilson as a playable character in the game’s challenge rooms.  Slade comes stocked with two of his own challenge maps and two skins.

Rounding out the rest of Origins news, let’s touch on this casting kerfuffle.  Initial reports had it that longtime Batman voice actor, Kevin Conroy, would not be reprising his role in the third Arkham game.  Everyone got sad, then angry, and rightfully so.  Then, Mr. Conroy up and outs his involvement, stating he wasn’t able to talk about it beforehand, having had to wait until the new title’s reveal.  While press quickly took this to mean Conroy would be Batsy once more, Warner Bros. squashed that insinuation into the ground.

Instead, our young Dark Knight will be voiced by Roger Craig Smith, whose laid down vocals for the likes of Ezio Auditore and Chris “Boulder Punch” Redfield, and the new Joker will be played by Troy Baker – a modern voice acting veteran most recently associated as Booker Dewitt in Bioshock Infinite and Joel from The Last of Us; more fittingly, Baker was Two-Face in Arkham City.  That still leaves the matter of Kevin Conroy, his role still unannounced, but the great detective in me thinks we’ll likely hear him narrate the affair as the older, battle hardened Batman we all love and wisely fear.

Arkham Origins Teaser Trailer Teases Better Trailer WB...

Arkham Origins Teaser Trailer Teases Better Trailer

WB Montreal(’s marketing team) dropped this nugget on the web earlier today.  What ensues is about twenty seconds of our boy Bats duking it out with Slade Wilson, aka Deathstroke, who is just one of eight hired killers bent on ridding Gotham City of its winged rodent problem.

The tragedy of tragedies is that we’re only treated to pre-rendered...

Batman: Arkham Origins (PC/PS3/X360/Wii U - October 25th, 2013)...

Batman: Arkham Origins (PC/PS3/X360/Wii U - October 25th, 2013)

Not seeing the Rocksteady logo anywhere near this title has left many skeptical, but maybe their blessing over the prequel will quell some concerns?  No?  We’re in the same boat, old chum, but what WB Montreal has planned for the Gotham’s protector sounds too interesting to dismiss this early.

Turning back the clock on his career, Origins focuses on an unrefined, mildly brash Batman who hasn’t quite mastered all the skills necessary for Dark Knighthood.  It’s Christmas Eve and a who’s who of DC villains are gunning after Bats courtesy of Black Mask.  Spanning both Old Gotham (years before its conversion into a prison colony) and New Gotham, Batman traverses a world twice that of Arkham City attempting to learn why he’s been marked for death.

Playing off of the city’s reticence of having a masked maniac soaring over their rooftops on the nightly, Batman can win the people’s trust by completing side quests like shortening Gotham’s Most Wanted list of villains and stopping “Crime in Progress” events such as saving a snitch from certain pavement-y doom or helping a GCPD squad fend off armed thugs.  Batman’s notoriety, and the city’s perception of him, changes after every act of good grace.

Even more than his superheroism, though, the narrative and gameplay revolve around Batman the Detective.  Scanning the environments with detective vision, just as in the first two games, returns, but Batman can now also review clues and play out crime simulations from within his Batcave, piecing together evidence as he finds it.  And there will be no shortage of clues as Old Gotham is riddled with cases for players to solve.

Fans will be pleased to know what they love about the Arkham series won’t change in the third installment: the heavily polished free-flow combat remains nearly untouched and stealth is practically the same, though WB Montreal promises new tactics and moves will be available with unique enemy types to unleash them on.  The new “Dark Knight System,” which prompts players with stealth and combat challenges that increase in difficulty, also looks to cut your teeth like never before.

I really do like what I hear and word of Rocksteady’s helpful guidance over gameplay mechanics and some other aspects, though minimal, is encouraging.  The Arkham games really have raised the bar not just for comic adaptations but for any game daring to enter the action-adventure genre.  I don’t believe for a moment Rocksteady’s work on Batman can be topped – extremely tough act to follow – but I’d sure as hell like to see Origins come close.