Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Top Five Batman Games of All Time

The announcement of not one but two new Batman games (Batman: Arkham Origins and Batman: Arkham Origins Blackgate) has sent the gaming world abuzz. We, too, at SuperPhillip Central are excited as well, and we thought we'd take this opportunity to list our favorite games starring the Dark Knight. Get your utility belt, cape, and cowl, and get ready to sit down and peruse our picks for the best Batman games of all time.

5) Batman: Vengeance (PS2, GCN, XBX)


Batman: Vengeance is based off the second Batman cartoon that premiered on Kids WB. This time Ubisoft published the title alongside a joint deal with Warner Bros. A majority of voice actors from the cartoon were prominent in the game, and that only added to the look and feel of the game. The actual gameplay itself had Batman running through open environments making up the various levels of Vengeance. All of Batman's tools were at his disposal: grappling hooks, batarangs, flash bombs, and more, to help him get the drop on the villains ruling Gotham City's streets. With accessible combat, nearly an hour of engaging cinematics, and an original story that will have players hooked till the very end, Batman: Vengeance ranks number five on our list.

4) LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes (Multi)


The recently released LEGO City Undercover got us thinking a lot about this fourth game on our list. It's LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes. Instead of just dealing with Batman and his trusty sidekick Robin, players were able to control the likes of Superman, Aquaman, the Martian Manhunter, and even play as some villains too. Each character archetype had their own abilities, which allowed them access to areas other characters could not. As for Gotham, the city was an open world setting this time around, with plenty of nooks and crannies to find new characters, vehicles, and challenges to complete. While the LEGO series of games are not for everyone admittedly, SuperPhillip and the gang here really loved and found LEGO Batman 2 immensely charming and fun.

3) The Adventures of Batman & Robin (SNES)


Based off the award-winning and critically acclaimed 1990's cartoon that aired on Fox Kids, The Adventures of Batman & Robin released on the Super Nintendo, Sega Genesis, Sega CD, and Game Gear. We'll be focusing on the Super Nintendo version, which we consider the definitive version. The game was an action platformer where Batman could equip different gadgets like x-ray vision, for instance, to advance in the game's multiple levels, each ending with a battle with a famous Batman villain. What sets The Adventures of Batman & Robin apart is the supreme amount of variation seen in the levels, whether in gameplay or level locale. Also, it just gives us awesome memories of the excellent 90's animated series.

2) Batman: Arkham Asylum (Multi)


Many were skeptical about Batman: Arkham Asylum. In fact, at the time, developer Rocksteady didn't have much to their name except a generic-sounding first-person shooter known as Urban Chaos: Riot Response. It was until the reviews came in from various media outlets that people began believing, and when they actually played the game? Step back, boy. To call Arkham Asylum one of the best superhero video games of all time would not be something we'd call hyperbole. It really is that great. Set up as a quasi-Metroid styled game, with Batman gaining new gadgets to access previously unreachable areas, Arkham Asylum was a marvel of game, combat, and level design, a one-two-three punch of greatness.

1) Batman: Arkham City (Multi)


Our pick for the greatest Batman game of all time put the Dark Knight in an open world setting where crime, criminals, and psychopaths roamed the streets. Arkham City was simply everything about Arkham Asylum that fans of the game liked, but bigger and better. While some don't appreciate the larger setting of the game, we found it liberating and less claustrophobic. Figuring out cases, participating in optional tasks, and showing Riddler who's boss by solving his riddles and collecting his trophies scattered around Arkham City all made for an excellent and replay value-filled time. The game was a who's who of Batman characters, featuring the likes of Joker, Penguin, Riddler, Poison Ivy, Two-Face, Catwoman, and many more that we won't spoil for those who still haven't tried the game yet. (Seriously, play it. Now.) The same combat that tested players' reflexes and skills with combos returned, and it flowed just as splendidly as Arkham Asylum. If you're looking for the ultimate Batman experience, get under the Dark Knight's cowl with Arkham City.

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That is our list of the best Batman games. What are your favorites? Let everyone on the interwebs know by posting your thoughts in the comments section.

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