Developer: Telltale Games Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment Platforms: Android, iOS, Microsoft Windows, OS X, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One Mode: Single-player Genre: Graphic adventure Available Now
“Enter the fractured psyche of Bruce Wayne and discover the powerful and far-reaching consequences of your choices as the Dark Knight. The fate of Bruce Wayne, his dark persona, Batman, and Gotham hang in the balance.”
by: Mitchell Cole
Enter the Dark Knight
Batman is perhaps one of my most favorite characters in all the universe be it DC, Marvel, Image, Disney, it doesn’t matter. The tale of Bruce Wayne and the creation of the Batman character has always mesmerized me as The Lone Ranger did for young Bruce Wayne on that fateful night along Crime Alley all those years ago. Telltale Games is a young, talented group whose games I have enjoyed over the years, including The Walking Dead, Back to the Future, & Jurassic Park to name a few. I was hooked the moment Telltale announced its partnership with WB Games in bringing the story back to the Dark Knight’s Gotham City.
In a break from its popular, Arkham Knight series, WB Games has licensed its product to Telltale Games to deliver a different perspective of the Batman. Gone is the Arkham Knight style of fighting and traversing the skylines. Instead, players are presented a more box-in storyline in which players must develop key relationships, solve puzzles, or make those all-important Telltale choices that will carry over through each episode totaling five episodes altogether.
Bruce Wayne is Batman!
The story of Batman has long been told and re-told so many times that one begins to wonder what REALLY happened on that fateful night in Crime Alley. Telltale Games took many popular beliefs and morphed them into a plausible, (albeit shocking) direction in which the Wayne’s may not have been so infallible. For me, the story was so shocking at first, I was angry but after some time and playthrough, I soon became engrossed and curious about how it all unfolds for Bruce Wayne and the Batman.
At his core, Batman is a detective. Batman must use his not only his immeasurable wealth and technology to save the day; but also, his wits and detective skills to unfold each plot throughout each episode. Graphically, I enjoyed the Telltale engine’s re-imagination of the world of Gotham. Characters are well created and thought out. Choices play a big role in any Telltale game and Batman is no exception, though each choice-set ultimately leads to the same conclusion. I was a bit disappointed with how little ‘choice’ we really had. Granted, the story is well-known so there is little room for deviation but I still felt the choice factor was diminished.
I was hesitant about fighting as Batman in a Telltale game but can report that fighting as Batman is easy and intuitive. The learning curve is very forgiving, lending itself to a wider audience of gamers. Missing a button here and there will not be a huge penalty that I found. So long as you keep the pace of the action up, a few miscues are forgiven. (Fighting as Bruce Wayne and Selina Kyle is STILL some of the best action no matter the Batman title!)
The Pulse of Gotham
Gotham feels alive and sick all at the same time thanks in part to great audio and music. Subtle nuances between scenes or a gripping action track make each episode, each scene more gripping. Gotham needed a fine soundtrack to convey the sense of desperation and despair Telltale painted. Passive tracks during conversations are no distraction while the audio is your typical bag of good ‘n bad. I sincerely enjoyed the voice modification box Bruce uses as the Batman. Finally, technology caught up with that glaring detail in my mind.
A- (Add to Your Library!)
Overall, Batman: The Telltale Series plays masterfully yet with a huge ease factor directed at casual gamers rather than core gamers. I enjoyed each episode and always recommend players to wait until all episodes are released before purchasing a Telltale Game. If you have played a Telltale game before, you already know what to expect in visuals, story, & delivery but at times, I felt the choice was taken from me no matter what choice I chose. This was a brief feeling as I quickly move on and become engrossed with the outcome, overall. As a Batman or Telltale fan, this title should be in your library. Other casual or core gamers should certainly give it a shot, especially if you are smart enough to find that great sale that seems always looming over Telltale games.