Tuesday, September 8, 2009

What have I been up to?

As some of you might know, aside from being a massive zombie lover... I am a huge fan of Batman.

I'm going to go on record here for what ever it may be worth, and say that Batman is the ultimate comic book hero. Hell... he is the ultimate hero period.

I'm pretty sure that I have read every Batman graphic novel that is worth reading... which is all of em.

The recent Batman comics have been pretty interesting too.

With Dick Grayson ( the first Robin) taking up the mental of the Bat, and Bruce Wayne 's son Damion as the new Robin. Not too sure how I feel about Tim Drake as the Red Robin, I think that comic line needs a little time to sink in.

Needless to say I'm gonna read em all any way because I like to get as much Batman as I can. That is why two months ago I pre-ordered my self a copy of Batman Arkham Asylum: Collectors Edition!!

When I first heard that there was a brand new Batman game coming... I didn't care much. Batman games have always been nothing more than a source of disappointment for me. But when I started seeing videos and screen shots of Rocksteady's Arkham Asylum, I was more than intrigued.

As a chracter Batman is someone who is very interesting. And a lot can be done with him visually and story wise. But you hardly get to see this out side of the better comics. As not only a fan...but an avid gamer... the idea that Rocksteady looked to be capturing the spirit of the comics I loved so much was a fun thing to watch develop

I started following development on the game on almost a daily basis. Logging on at work and dashing straight to Goggle to search for any new info I could get my hands on. The more I learned about the game, the more I wanted to play it. I was a little skeptical at first... seeing as how the developers previous title was a little something called 'Urban Chaos' which I had never heard of.

But right of the 'bat' the game looked like it was going somewhere great. Rocksteady had won me over with it's take on the look of Batman, and the game as a whole was nothing short of breath taking, but great graphics are pretty much every where these days. What sealed the deal was the attention to Batman detail. From the concept and idea of the game... to casting the greatest 'Batman' ever Kevin Conroy as the voice of our caped crusader. Then came Mark Hamill... and it didn't stop there.

When I heard Paul Dini was the guy writing the script for the game... everything was in place. I had long been a fan of Dini ever since he started writing for Detective comics. Later on I found out that he had written for the Batman Animated series... which in my mind was the closest any media form out side of comics had come to capturing what Batman is inside my head.

Until Batman Arkham Asylum came along.

Living here in Fiji... it took me a damn week and a half to down load the demo for the game off of Xbox live when it came out. but man was it ever worth it.

I played that thing to death...

Yes my desk is messy...

I actually got the game a week after it had been released. Funny thing is, I was expecting it in on the 3rd of September... and on the day the guy I ordered the game through said that I won't be coming in till the next. Just the idea of having to wait just that one extra day made my stomach hurt.

Thank god his shipment got cleared by that afternoon... so I got the game after all :D

As soon as I ripped into it... I wanted to cry.

This game is a beauty. As I said the graphics are so kick ass... and the controls are easy enough to pick up and play. But watching this baby in action is something else.

As an avid Batman fan... it was such a pleasure to see my hero brought to 'life' with such pain staking detail and care. I'm not gonna bother writing some kind of gonzo review of the game here... as tones of reviews for the game already online.

But to sum it up...

You play as Batman (Duh) and you've just captured the Joker and taken him over to Arkham Asylum... which is mad house where all the crazy Gotham villains end up. The ones that 'normal' correctional facilities can't handle. When you get there... low and behold the Joker springs a trap and now Batman has to face of against the crazies that Arkham as to offer.

The story unfolds as you sneak here... detect stuff there and beat the shizz out of thugs every where.

The game-play it's self is broken up into various stages. While you explore you have your detective skills which you use to find clues as to what to do next. You also have a fancy set of stealth moves to take out bad guys from the shadows... and when all else fails. Punch people in the face.

The game is also a treasure trove of Batman trivia... drawing from all aspects of my favorite heroes history. Hidden through out the game are little hints to numerous Batman Villeins as well as interview tapes of some of the inmates that you can collect and listen to. These were so cool because they have this tape deck reel sound under the voices, mixed with the awesome voice acting... to make for some spooky listening.

The art style of the game is worth a mention too. Aside from being just flashy graphics... the environment really sets a certain mode through out the game. I love the look of Batman too. To me it looks a bit like the Micheal Keaton Batman crossed with todays Cristian Bale rendition. (By the way... I liked the Micheal Keaton one better. Say what you will about Tim Burton, but Batman '89 was the shizz)

As for the Joker... it seems the fellaz over at Wild Storm who did the art concepts for the game, went with a crazier version of the more traditional Joker.

As a fan... this baby delivered so good. I was a bit worried about forking up so much cash for the collectors, as there was some bad crap floating around on the inter-web about it. But I actually was very happy with it.

Normally I would have been on here writing all kinds of stuff about the game as soon as I had gotten it. Like I have done with my other games... but I could barely stop playing it enough to write this entry :P

My only grip with the game was that it ran a little shorter than I had expected. I got it on a Thursday afternoon and I was done by Saturday morning. But the game comes with these mad challenge rooms where you have to carry our certain tasks in order to score medals and shizz. That's a lot of fun.

Hats off to Rocksteady for making such an awesome gaming experience. Not only for Batman fans... but also for gamers every where. My buddy MJ who never reads comics... is actually looking forward to getting this game for his PC when it comes out.

I could go on and on about how cool this game is... but I'm going to stop typing and go back to playing it.

O but let me just say that Scarecrow levels are the best...

Edit: I just read through this and it reads like such a Batman fan boy post that I would be ashamed of my self... If I weren't a Batman fan boy :P

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