PlayStation 3
Nintendo Wii U
XBox 360
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Product Features

Warner Bros Interactive Entertainment
Release Date
November 08, 2013
Available Platforms
PlayStation 3, Nintendo Wii U, XBox 360

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Batman Arkham Origins

Includes: Deathstroke DLC Batman Arkham Origins is the next installment in the blockbuster Batman: Arkham videogame franchise. Developed by WB Games Montral, the game features an expanded Gotham City and introduces an original prequel storyline set several years before the events of Batman Arkham Asylum and Batman Arkham City, the first two critically acclaimed games of the franchise. Taking place before the rise of Gotham Citys most dangerous criminals, the game showcases a young and unrefined Batman as he faces a defining moment in his early career as a crime fighter that sets his path to becoming the Dark Knight. As the story unfolds, players will meet many important characters for the first time and forge key relationships. PS3 Exclusive Content Knightfall Pack Included

  • Ravi Nijjar November 02, 2013 PS3

    Don't believe anyone who tells you that Batman: Arkham Origins is a bad game. It's actually a very decent game. It just doesn't outperform the two previous entries in the series, which I guess makes it the "Return of the Jedi" of the Arkham franchise: the weakest in the trilogy, but still quite a lot of fun in its own right.

    Building on the gameplay established in Arkham Asylum - and expanded into a fully-fledged open-world adventure in the 2011 sequel, Arkham City - the latest game in the series takes us back to the early days of Bruce Wayne's one-man war against crime, when Batman was little more than an urban legend and the Joker had yet to appear on the scene. This immediately gives Arkham Origins a different feel to the first two games in terms of its story, and gives you the chance to play through some novel situations as a less-experienced Batman who hasn't quite perfected the art of being a superhero yet.

    However, this freshness quickly turns out to be purely superficial, as the core gameplay feels virtually identical to that of its predecessors. So that means more beating up thugs; more hiding on gargoyles to despatch tougher armed opponents from afar; more crawling through vents to find new routes to dangerous or inaccessible areas; more zooming up to rooftops with your grapple-gun; more chasing after clues to puzzles set by the Riddler (or, as he's called here, Enigma); more cracking security codes to unlock doors with your decrypter; more piecing-together of crimes using your detective-vision powers; and more general swooping about in a cape and intimidating bad guys by being the scariest (and best) superhero of all.

    The thing is, while we might have seen all of this before, that doesn't make it any less fun to play. And by expanding the Gotham map to almost double the size of Arkham City, and pitting Batman against at least a dozen different super-villains who are all after his blood, Arkham Origins manages to spruce things up considerably, even if these are largely cosmetic upgrades.

    Also new to the mix is a multiplayer mode that allows you to take control of groups of villains - or Batman and Robin - and play through a gang war between two different criminal factions (including the chance to play as the Joker or Bane at certain points). It's a worthwhile addition to the Arkham franchise, even if it isn't the most polished or extensive multiplayer experience I've ever had.

    Some disappointed reviewers have pointed to the fact that Arkham Origins was developed by a different studio to the one that made Asylum and City (WB Montreal, rather than Rocksteady), but the new developers haven't been stupid enough to throw out all of the stuff that worked about the older games. So, you still get one of the best and most responsive close-combat systems in games today; you still get access to a host of cool gadgets (exploding gel; remote-control batarangs; a grappling claw; glue grenades) that allow a huge amount of variety in terms of the kind of challenges that the game can throw at you; and you still get a story that manages to pull in countless well-known members of Batman's supporting cast, wrapping them all up in a twisty-turny story that all takes place on a single, cold Christmas Eve.

    Because perhaps the smartest thing about Arkham Origins is its release date. As with Asylum and City, releasing a Batman game at a time of year where the nights are starting to grow a little bit longer is a masterstroke, subliminally tying your adventures as a creature of the night to a time of year when you'll already be feeling the effects of encroaching darkness. As your thoughts turn to Christmas and the evenings draw in, you can expect to spend many long and enjoyable evenings on this particular Dark Knight.

    (Disclaimer: I played the PS3 version, so my opinion is based on that, but I'm led to believe that the game is more or less the same on all platforms).

    Ravi Nijjar

  • Rizwan Nazir October 28, 2013 360

    Batman: Arkham Origins

    The Joke's on us....

    Incredible, that's the only word I can use to sum up what Warner Brothers Montreal have done with Barman Arkham Origins. Incredible in the sense that they managed to ruin one of the most perfect and engrossing superhero franchises ever to grace a console generation.

    When I heard a new studio was taking over the reigns from Rocksteady, I like many other fans of the previous 2 Arkham games become concerned that the game would not live up to the high standards. Then we started to see some gameplay screens and learned that the same game engine and free flow combat mechanics had been handed over to the new developer to re-use. What could possibly go wrong?

    Well, it turns out - a hell of a lot. I should have realised something was seriously wrong when it became apparent there was a review embargo in place to only be lifted on the day of release (October 25th). A developer/publisher only enforces such an embargo for one of 2 reasons. They do not want any spoilers for the game from game journalists or their game is not good and they do not want pre-orders cancelled.

    It seems that Arkham Origins falls squarely in the second camp.

    First the good parts:

    The graphics look good and in-line with the wonderfully realised world which Rocksteady created;
    The story is interesting, highlighting Batman in his early career and still in most part untrusted by Commissioner Gordon and the GCPD;
    Menu music is engaging and has undertones from the recent Dark Knight Rises movie;
    The actual map play area is bigger than Arkham City, so plenty to do;
    Firefly boss fight was good;
    Mad Hatter side mission very nicely done;
    Bane boss fight was thrilling;
    Voice acting for Batman and Joker were surprisingly good.

    Now for the bad:
    Frame rate is all over the place often even cut-scenes for the Batwing appear to stutter;
    Animation for characters speaking look as if they have been done in isolation from the voice recording, so look completely out of place;
    The game regularly freezes, sometimes whilst mid-flight as you move to an area (Requiring a restart of the console and losing any unsaved progress);
    The WBID online element has issues which mean the game will sometimes not even start, simply showing a "busy" message - Requiring anything up to 3 or 4 restarts of the console (Can be eliminated in part by disconnecting from Xbox Live);
    The camera during combat is temperamental, often zooming in to the point you are unable to see who you are meant to be fighting;
    Grapple hook points around the city appear to have been forgotten for most places in the map so maintaining a flight by grappling and boosting cannot be done smoothly leading to the character stopping and restarting;
    Sound mixing is quite bad, which becomes much more apparent on a home cinema system. Heavy bass thuds during combat seem to be randomly engaged resulting in instances where you are unsure if you have downed an enemy or if they are coming back for more;

    AND FINALLY, the combat....

    Rocksteady created what many believe to be one of the most perfect free-flow combat systems for a game. If you got hit during a fight with multiple adversaries, it was usually YOUR fault. I'm sad to say that WB Montreal have managed to tinker with it to its detriment.

    During combat, the AI enemies are much faster than even the hardest setting in the previous Arkham Asylum / Arkham Origins games. Some might interpret this as being more of a challenge, but that falls by the wayside when the fundamental mechanics are problematic. There appears to be some bug in the coding that means even if you are countering an enemy strike, it's 50/50 whether you are successful. Therefore most of the time you are having to think whether to counter or evade and in doing so you break the combo meter. Enemy AI are able to hit you even being up to 6 feet or so away and attempting to use gadgets during fights becomes useless as the animation for some moves is so slow that whilst you are doing them you end up getting hit. I played the game on normal mode and I struggled in getting what I would call a decent run during combat so I can only imagine how bad it would be on higher difficulty settings. This is coming from a someone who completed both previous games with 100% on all story, challenge rooms and DLC.

    I thought the above issues were specific to the Xbox 360 version but reading forums it appears that even the PS3 version suffers from the same issues.

    To say I am disappointed would be an understatement. I am a huge fan of the Arkham series and despite reservations, was prepared to give WB Montreal a chance to prove themselves with this game, but I have been left with a bad taste in my mouth. Despite having been given the blueprints of the previous games to use, they delivered a shockingly bad, unfinished and problematic game that should never have been released in its current state. It seems their QA testers were on leave.

    Other game sites have given scores of 7 or 8 out of 10, but none of them had the guts to explain to the paying gamer that the game just does NOT live up to the quality bar set by Rocksteady. At best I would give it 5 out of 10 and that's only because I'm being kind.

    Save your money and wait for Rocksteady to announce their next game, which needs to repair the damage done here.