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Batman: Arkham Asylum

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Critic Reviews 92% add missing review

Adrenaline Vault, The (AVault) ( ) (100%)

I’ll be frank: Batman: Arkham Asylum is one of the most enjoyable and most compelling games that I’ve played in a long time. It’s like a good book; once you pick it up, you won’t want to put it down until you’ve read it all the way through.

Jan 29th, 2010 · Windows · read review

GamesVault (10 out of 10) (100%)

Polecam Batman: Arkham Asylum każdemu, nie tylko fanom Batmana. Jest to naprawdę jeden z najlepszych tytułów jakie ukazały się przez ostanie miesiące i murowany pretendent do gry roku! Gra jest warta wydania na nią ciężko zarobionych pieniędzy. Na pewno nie pożałujecie!

Oct 5th, 2009 · Windows · read review

GameSpy ( ) (100%)

In fact, Rocksteady just needs to rename itself Batman Studios and hire Paul Dini to write annual sequels. The lackluster combat isn't enough for me to slag an otherwise stellar game; the fact that I'm still glued to my TV, trying my hardest to achieve 100 percent completion (something I reserve for only my very favorite stuff), should tell you that I got over that little pockmark pretty fast. If you're a Batman fan, this is the best treatment the World's Greatest Detective has ever received in videogame form -- and if you're not a Batman fan, Arkham Asylum will change that. This is how to make a licensed game.

Sep 18th, 2009 · Windows · read review

Impulse Gamer (10 out of 10) (100%)

Batman: Arkham Asylum is the ultimate Batman experience, hands down.

Aug 2009 · Windows · read review

Gaming Nexus (A) (100%)

For Batman fans, this game is a long time coming. Taking the Unreal engine, Rocksteady has gone and made a truly fun superhero game and it looks incredible on the PC. If you have the NVIDIA hardware to play with, it looks even better and includes features that you can't find on the console versions.

Sep 22nd, 2009 · Windows · read review

Gaming since 198x (5 out of 5) (100%)

Magistral et addictif, ce sont les deux mots qui viennent à l'esprit lors d'une partie de Batman: Arkham Asylum. Magistral parce qu'absolument tout, qu'il s'agisse de la réalisation à l'écriture en passant par la maniabilité a été fignolé avec la précision d'un horloger suisse. Addictif parce que même après l'avoir terminé, on n'a qu'une seule envie: y retourner et mettre à mal le mode Défi. Un hit incontournable et l'un des tous meilleurs jeux de l'année.

Oct 6th, 2009 · Windows · read review

Game Over Online (98 out of 100) (98%)

This is very nearly the perfect game. I’m leaving myself some ceiling in the game review rating, but that’s just a formality. This game is as close to 100% as I’ve ever seen. If you’ve ever wanted to play Batman, were more than a little disappointed by the previous Batman Vengeance, and still own a pair of Batman Underoos™ even though they’re way too small and were probably the wrong thing to wear on your wedding night, you have to run out and buy a copy of this game. Run over your own mother if you have to. If you don’t have the money, sit on a street corner with a cup and beg to unleash your Caped Crusader within. Sell your blood. Who needs all of it anyway? Or a kidney! Likely an entire generation will go by and never find a better gaming dollar spent. Don’t miss it!

Sep 23rd, 2009 · Windows · read review

OMGN: Online Multiplayer Games Network (9.7 out of 10) (97%)

If you’re looking for a great licensed game with melees, stealth, intellectual puzzles and more, then Batman: Arkham Asylum is for you. The richness of the experience and depth of the game have a lot to offer just about anybody, fans of Batman or not. If you don’t already have this game and want to add a solid title to your collection, then you can’t go wrong with the Dark Knight’s latest game.

Nov 30th, 2009 · Windows · read review

YouGamers (96 out of 100) (96%)

It may be too early to dish out "Game of the Year" awards, but Batman: Arkham Asylum is a good contender. At the very least, it is the best of the licensed titles this year - if not the whole decade. The trick? Arkham Asylum is a game that would be great even if you took away all the licensed bits and replaced everyone with a generic hero and some generic villains. Yet it also fully embraces the license and manages to be a Batman game that "gets it", going beyond than the standard "caped crusader beats up random thugs and catches the villain" kid friendly story and gameplay. It is a darker, more mature Batman.

Oct 12th, 2009 · Windows · read review

GameWatcher / Strategy Informer (9.5 out of 10) (95%)

Forget any reservations you might have about Arkham Asylum on the PC - it’s unreservedly brilliant. In retrospect, we may have got a bit carried away in awarding the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions a whopping 9.5 out of 10, but then repeated play has failed to dim the game’s appeal any. For that reason alone, the PC version is genuinely worthy of the very same score. We’ve said it once, we’ll say it again - truly this is the Batman game that everyone has been waiting for. It’s genius.

2009 · Windows · read review

GBase - The Gamer's Base (9.5 out of 10) (95%)

Ich muss zugeben, dass ich noch nie ein grosser Batman-Fan gewesen bin, doch seit dem letzten Film The Dark Knight hat sich mein Interesse an der Fledermaus deutlich gesteigert. Insbesondere der offensichtlich erwachsene Stil, der auch in Arkam Asylum fortgeführt wird, sorgt für Begeisterung! Entwickler Rocksteady Games hat es tatsächlich geschafft, den Kinofilm mit Heath Ledger noch zu toppen. Die Geschichte um Joker, der die Irrenanstalt für besonders gewalttätige Verbrecher für seine finsteren Machenschaften in seine Gewalt bringt, ist zwar nicht sehr originell, trotzdem aber ultraspannend in Szene gesetzt.

Sep 21st, 2009 · Windows · read review

IGN (9.3 out of 10) (93%)

Batman: Arkham Asylum is the greatest comic book videogame of all time. This is an adult Dark Knight story that is well-told, packs some truly fun gameplay elements, has topnotch voice talent, and feel like it's part of Batman canon. If I have to nitpick, I wish the cutscenes looked better as they can distract from the tale and that the AI was a bit more responsive, but those are tiny flaws that shouldn't distract from the big picture. Rocksteady nailed what Batman is supposed to feel like. Fans, rejoice.

Sep 11th, 2009 · Windows · read review

ComputerGames.ro (92 out of 100) (92%)

Fără să o mai lungim, dacă încă nu eşti convins că merită să-i acorzi lui Batman: Arkham Asylum o parte din timpul tău nepreţuit, ia demo-ul, joacă-l şi pe urmă dă o fugă-n magazin şi cumpără-l. Iar după ce-l termini, rezolvă toate enigmele şi găseşte tot ce-i de găsit.

Oct 11th, 2009 · Windows · read review

2404.org PC Gaming (9.2 out of 10) (92%)

Batman: Arkham Asylum is a remarkable achievement. I need to stress just how thoughtful and smart its progression is. The way you make your way around Arkham is executed so well, and everything about the game is polished to an almost offensive sheen. Just as much as Arkham Asylum is an excellent game, it’s a game that wouldn’t be as great if the Batman fiction weren’t intertwined with the game’s framework in such a substantial and integrated way. It’s a must-play through and through.

Sep 27th, 2009 · Windows · read review

CPU Gamer (9.2 out of 10) (92%)

Batman: Arkham Asylum is a remarkable achievement. I need to stress just how thoughtful and smart its progression is. The way you make your way around Arkham is executed so well, and everything about the game is polished to an almost offensive sheen. Just as much as Arkham Asylum is an excellent game, it’s a game that wouldn’t be as great if the Batman fiction weren’t intertwined with the game’s framework in such a substantial and integrated way. It’s a must-play through and through.

Sep 27th, 2009 · Windows · read review

Cheat Code Central (4.6 out of 5) (92%)

I can say with confidence and cannot stress enough, Batman: Arkham Asylum is, without a doubt, the best Batman game ever created. It does more than give you the Batman game you want, it gives you a video game that you could play repeatedly, even if it didn't have the caped and cowled Dark Knight in it. With a massive world to search, an easy to adjust combat system, stealth action, audio logs to find, and challenges galore, Batman has finally come into his own in this medium. There are so many extra things and enjoyable moments in Arkham Asylum for fans and newcomers alike, you'll be glad you are a fan of Batman and video games.

2009 · Windows · read review

3D Juegos (9.1 out of 10) (91%)

Batman: Arkham Asylum es un triunfo con todas las letras: Acción, sigilo e investigación apuntalan un combinado realmente poderoso. El mejor trabajo con la licencia de Bob Kane que hemos visto hasta la fecha, y uno de los mejores videojuegos de superhéroes de la historia. Rocksteady se pone en el mapa con su El Caballero Oscuro de los videojuegos.

Sep 16th, 2009 · Windows · read review

PC Games (Germany) (90 out of 100) (90%)

Arkham Asylum hat mich gleich doppelt überrascht: Zum einen ist das Spiel selbst ein Knaller, zum anderen kann man die PC-Konvertierung fast schon als perfekt bezeichnen. Deshalb hier mein Dankesschreiben an die Entwickler: Für zwölf Stunden Spielspaß der Extraklasse, für eine Präsentation auf Hollywood-Niveau und für die Erkenntnis, dass Comic-Versoftungen genial sein können. Zweiflern sei an dieser Stelle gesagt, dass selbst die Batman-Hasser in meinem Freundeskreis dieses Spiel lieben – ein größeres Lob kann es gar nicht geben!

Sep 16th, 2009 · Windows · read review

videogamer.com (9 out of 10) (90%)

Batman: Arkham Asylum is everything you'd want from a Batman video game. It takes the licence and uses it in ways that make sense both for the character and for a game, giving players the chance to become one of the most popular super heroes of all time. There are a few niggling issues, but nothing that gets in the way of what is undoubtedly one of the best games of 2009. Whether you fancy skulking in the shadows, smashing slow motion fists in into a goon's skull, or simply using some cool gadgets, you can do no wrong with what is Eidos' best game in years.

Sep 23rd, 2009 · Windows · read review

GameSpot (9 out of 10) (90%)

Regardless of whether you're getting sucked into the Story mode or competing for high scores in the Challenge mode, Batman: Arkham Asylum does an outstanding job of letting you be Batman. Everything about this game--the impressive visuals, stirring soundtrack, superb voice acting, fiendish puzzles, hard-hitting combat--feels like it has been lovingly crafted by a development team that's both knowledgeable and passionate about the source material. Miss out on this one and the joke's on you.

Sep 11th, 2009 · Windows · read review

Game Captain (90 out of 100) (90%)

Eieiei. Oder auch "uiuiuiui". Was auch immer, wie auch immer: Batman: Arkham Asylum macht Laune. Schlicht und ergreifend. Ob es nun die Kämpfe sind, die Grafik oder die Akustik – ich fühlte und fühle mich bei diesem Titel einfach gut unterhalten, war ein Teil des Ganzen und das ist doch das, worauf es ankommt. Sicher, es gibt auch Schwachstellen wie die angesprochenen Clippingfehler oder hier und da eben auch mal auftretende logische Schwächen oder Planlosigkeit bei den Missionen. Trübt das den Gesamteindruck? Nein. Wer auf Superhelden steht, muss zugreifen, es gibt nichts anderes für Fledermäuse als dieses Spiel. Und wer ein gutes Spiel sucht, bei dem die Atmosphäre stimmt, der ist hier ebenfalls gut aufgehoben – sollte aber den Controller der Maus/Tastatur-Variante vorziehen.

Sep 20th, 2009 · Windows · read review

UOL Jogos ( ) (90%)

Diante do retrospecto decepcionante de jogos estrelados pelo Homem-Morcego, "Batman: Arkham Asylum" surpreende. É o jogo definitivo do Cavaleiro das Trevas, que não só apresenta mecânicas e ambientação sólidas, mas também honra a complexa e intricada mitologia do herói. Com produção de primeira, é facilmente um dos jogos mais interessantes e envolventes do ano, seja você fã do personagem ou não.

Sep 15th, 2009 · Windows · read review

Gameplay (Benelux) (90 out of 100) (90%)

We kunnen geen enkele reden bedenken om dit spel niet in huis te halen. Zonder twijfel dé sleeperhit van dit jaar!

Sep 30th, 2009 · Windows

Jeuxvideo.com (18 out of 20) (90%)

En sublimant la forme grâce à PhysX tout en conservant le fond synonyme d'expérience inoubliable, Rocksteady a doublement réussi son pari : Magnifier son oeuvre tout en permettant à tout un chacun de savourer un titre exceptionnel malgré un terrain de jeu limité, des mécanismes tournant vite en rond ou le fait d'être passé complètement à côté des combats de boss. Pourtant, Batman Arkham Asylum n'en reste pas moins un monument qui ne demande qu'à ouvrir la voie à d'éventuelles suites. On en frémirait presque d'avance...

Sep 18th, 2009 · Windows · read review

Gameswelt (88 out of 100) (88%)

Wie nicht anders zu erwarten, zeigt sich Comic-Held Batman auch auf dem PC von seiner Schokoladenseite. Spielmechanik, Steuerung und Grafik – alles bewegt sich bis zum Abspann stets auf sehr hohem Niveau. Damit reiht sich Batman: Arkham Asylum in die (leider noch) übersichtliche Riege gelungener Lizenzversoftungen ein. Wir wünschen uns mehr davon! Für Erzfeind und Paradiesvogel Joker ist Rocksteadys Werk damit ein Grund, zum Lachen in den muffigen Keller zu gehen. Haha!

Sep 17th, 2009 · Windows · read review

GameStar (Germany) (87 out of 100) (87%)

Ich bin weiß Gott kein Batman-Fan, aber herrje, das ist mal ein tolles Spiel! Allein diese erhabene Art, wie sich Batman bewegt: Der rennt nur in Ausnahmefällen, ansonsten schreitet er, so sicher ist er sich seiner. Da macht es schon Spaß, einfach nur auf einem Dachfirst zu stehen, den Umhang wallen zu lassen und die nichtsahnenden Gangster zu beobachten. So, ich muss wieder los: Batman wartet auf eine zweite Tour durch Arkham.

Sep 11th, 2009 · Windows · read review

Krawall Gaming Network (86 out of 100) (86%)

Kein anderes Superhelden-Spiel konnte mich bisher so fesseln wie „Batman: Arkham Asylum“. Die Story zieht einen dank cineastischer Inszenierung sofort in ihren Bann und lässt einen aufgrund zahlreicher Plottwists nicht mehr so schnell los. Der Gameplay-Mix aus Brawler und Stealth-Action macht ebenfalls Spaß. Über die etwas dürftige Gegner-KI kann man angesichts der Allmachtsgefühle, die der Titel erzeugt, hinwegsehen. Lediglich das etwas eintönige Missionsdesign und die Backtrackingpassagen stoßen sauer auf. Aber auch diesbezüglich kriegt „Arkham Asylum“ im letzten Drittel wieder die Kurve. Unterm Strich bietet das Abenteuer nicht nur „Batman“-Fans genug Stoff für zwölf bis fünfzehn unterhaltsame Stunden. Also, nichts wie ran an den Flattermann.

Sep 15th, 2009 · Windows · read review

Gamona (85 out of 100) (85%)

Batman: Arkham Asylum bietet eigentlich alles, was man von einem Videospiel des Dunklen Ritters erwarten darf: Finstere, detailgetreue und höchst atmosphärische Umgebung, filmreife Inszenierung, hervorragende Charaktere, tolle Sprecher, intuitives und spektakuläres Kampfsystem, etliche Rätsel, viele Zusatzinhalte - auch abseits der Hauptstory - die das Erkunden lohnend machen. Comicspielerfanherz, was willst du mehr? Nun ja, ein wenig mehr Spieltiefe würde z.B. nicht schaden. Die Kämpfe sind spektakulär, nutzen sich jedoch relativ schnell ab. Viele Gameplay-Elemente wiederholen sich zu häufig, so hätten auch die Bosskämpfe trotz beeindruckender Hintergrundkulisse etwas mehr Tiefgang vertragen können. Jede der guten Ideen hätte noch ein wenig mehr Pepp und Variation vertragen können, die einen zu routinierten Spielablauf verhindert hätten. Doch keine Angst: Das ist glücklicherweise Kritik auf sehr hohem Niveau!

Aug 28th, 2009 · Windows · read review

JeuxActu (17 out of 20) (85%)

Un peu sorti de nulle part, Batman : Arkham Asylum clôture les Grandes Vacances (ou commence la rentrée, c'est selon) de la plus belle manière qui soit. Grâce à sa réalisation haut de gamme, son gameplay riche et intuitif et son ambiance unique, le titre d'Eidos et de Rocksteady captive notre attention dès la première minute, en nous emmenant dans une aventure pleine de surprises et d'amusement. Nul doute que Batman : Arkham Asylum fait désormais partie des jeux incontournables qu'il faut posséder dans sa ludothèque pour ne pas passer pour le benêt de service.

Aug 28th, 2009 · Windows · read review

Total PC Gaming (8.4 out of 10) (84%)

We’ve gushed about Arkham Asylum for far too long now, revealing ourselves to be major comic book geeks in the process. While it isn’t perfect, we’ll render our final judgement in the style of the patron saints of comic book fan boys everywhere. Best. Comic. Book. Game. Ever. ’Nuff said.

Mar 9th, 2009 · Windows · read review

4Players.de (84 out of 100) (84%)

Es ist der Triumph eines Superhelden! Denn was Batman auf Arkham Asylum leistet, ist nicht nur ein weiteres Action-Abenteuer, das auch unter einem unbekannten Namen funktionieren könnte. Die Art und Weise, wie sich der Schwarze Rächer bewegt, wie er tüftelt und wie er seinen Feinden das Fürchten lehrt - das IST Batman! Schade aber, dass das Spiel nie über das rudimentäre Abspulen der immer gleichen Prinzipien hinauskommt. Kleine Variationen gestalten den Ausflug in die Irrenanstalt zwar abwechslungsreicher, aber nicht lebendiger. Selbst mächtige Zwischengegner überraschen nur selten mit cleveren Manövern. So sind es alleine die ausgezeichnet getroffenen Comic-Kulissen sowie die hervorragenden Charaktere, die dem Spiel seine Klasse verleihen - nicht zu vergessen die angenehm kniffligen Rätsel des Riddlers. Unter dem Strich, wo sich spätestens nach dem letzten Kampf einfach zu viele Minus-Zeichen angesammelt haben, steht deshalb in der Tat ein inhaltlich beinahe perfektes Batman-Spiel.

Sep 18th, 2009 · Windows · read review

Absolute Games (AG.ru) (83 out of 100) (83%)

Бэтмену жутко не везет с играми. Разные жанры, студии, платформы — и почти ни одной хорошей вещи за четверть века. Кто бы мог представить, что удача улыбнется команде, за плечами которой — шутер «про спецназ», и издателю, застрявшему в финансовой яме!

Oct 3rd, 2009 · Windows · read review

Cheat Happens (8 out of 10) (80%)

Sure, it has its flaws, but compared to the Batman games of the past, Arkham Asylum is a how-to in the world of superhero video games. Make no mistake about it, this is the Batman game you’ve been waiting for – and one of this year’s standout titles.

Sep 1st, 2009 · Windows · read review

Player Reviews

The Dark Knight at his very best.

The Good
When I saw the first pictures and gameplay videos from Arkham Asylum I wasn't very convinced. It looked decent, but not great. I was dead wrong.

From the very first second of the intro Arkham Asylum had me spellbound. It conjures up a great atmosphere that blends the comics, Batman 1989 and The Dark Knight into one lovely entity. It's dark and brooding, but also fun and spectacular.

Many characters from the comics make appearances and cameos. The Riddler, for example, has planted clues and trophies for Batman to solve and find, in order to unlock challenge modes and whatnot.

The main villain, though, is The Joker. Naturally. The unsettling psychopath is the natural nemesis of Batman, and he comes off as truly menacing and disturbing in Arkham Asylum. Brilliantly voiced by Mark Hamill, you really feel Batman's frustration with The Joker as he murders and destroys everything in his path in order to execute his diabolic plan.

The gameplay is complex and simple at the same time. As Batman you have to fight, sneak and use your detective skills. And jump around on platforms, of course. The controls are very intuitive and easy to learn, making the game a joy to play. The fights flow smoothly as Batman performs blocks and combos and breaks a few bones in the process. It's extremely satisfying.

There are lots of stuff to find and unlock in the game and as the story progresses you get more and more advanced equipment which to use in order to get to hard to reach places. This means that you can always backtrack in order to reach new areas when you have completed the story. So even when you have completed the game, there is still more to do. The challenge modes, for example, are quite entertaining. These consist of different arenas where you are supposed to beat up bad guys as flawlessly as possible to get high points, or to sneak and silently take out bad guys as quickly as possible. It's relaxing fun, although quite challenging.

What works best in the game is the atmosphere and that all the aspects of the game (fighting, stealth, platforming, detective) work so well together. You constantly have something to do. Always a threat that needs to be averted. And you get to kick plenty off ass along the way. And all along the way the game is extremely satisfying. It's just as fun to weave long combos together in a huge fight as it is to silently take out armed guards.

The Bad
There's not much to complain about, but there are some aspects that could have been better. The biggest flaw with the game is the boss fights. Most of them are a bit uninspired. The part where you meet Killer Croc in the sewers was disappointing, and I would have liked to get some closure in a big final fight with the always menacing Scarecrow, but sadly you never get the chance to.

Even the final fight with The Joker is more or less just a retread of a fight you have done all through the game. These fights are very entertaining so it isn't really such a huge problem. I would have liked some more spectacular fights with Batman's arch enemies, though.

In order to unlock all challenge modes you have to backtrack a lot and search through the whole asylum in order to reach all those places you couldn't reach when you passed through the first time. I really don't see the fun in running around in an empty asylum collecting trophies after the story is completed. I guess it is a good thing that there is more to do for those who love to collect all sorts of things in their games, but I don't have the patience for it. I just want my challenge modes unlocked so I can play them already.

These complaints are minor, though. All in all, this game delivers, big time.

The Bottom Line
The perfect Batman experience. Whether kicking ass in bone-breaking fights or sneaking around on ledges, this game is thoroughly satisfying.

by Joakim Kihlman (231) on Oct 6th, 2009 · Windows

Fear the dark knight

The Good
Batman is been paid somehow as he deserves. After some good films directed by Tim Burton (films that have little to do with comics, but good films anyway), Joel Schumacher buried and destroyed the bat. Since that moment, nothing remarkable, but then, without a great fanfare, Christopher Nolan directed Batman Begins, an incredible film about the superhero that was a new beginning., and the film that Batman deserved. Nolan did what he should with Batman, and the confirmation arrived with The Dark Knight.

This evolution of the superhero in the movies has a similar path with the evolution in the games. We have some good games for the 16-bit (maybe the best one Adventures of Batman & Robin for Genesis), but they're only funny games and nothing more. It all changed when Batman Arkham Asylum arrived.

The most important thing is the fact that Batman Arkham Asylum is not just the best superhero game released, we're talking about one of the best games made in some years. When people started to talk about this game, some people started to think that it was not going to be as good as it was looking at the moment, but when they played the game themselves they realized that an incredible game was released, a game made with respect, an homage to Batman as never made before. Talking about the homage, we have a lot of information during the game with biographies of many characters, as well as many different antagonists selected for the game.

The game is the perfect combination between beat 'em up and Stealth games, that made the game more dynamic. Without a doubt, the Stealth parts are the most remarkable, you'll feel like a true superhero with many different weapons (none of them are useless) and different ways to defeat your foes. Your foes will react at every action that you do in this game, they'll fear you once you start defeating their partners, which is something really funny (for you, not for them of course...) The beat 'em up parts are good too, with a perfect battle system with many different and suitable movements. In spite of this, when you begin the game you don't have the special movements and it may look a bit limited, what's more, in the first battle you may think that his game is just a beat 'em up game where you're only going to push a button many times to fight your foes, but nothing further from the truth.

At the beginning, the storyline looks a bit typical, but when you progress the storyline turns better. The depth of the story is enormous, specially when you face the scarecrow, which is one of the best parts of the game. Facing the scarecrow means facing yourself, your fears and all the things that made Bruce Wayne to become Batman. Every confrontation with the scarecrow is placed in an strategic point of the story, it's good because it made the game varied. The number of confrontations with him are just the confrontations that the game needed.

Music has an important part of the product. It's more gothic than orchestral in some parts, and it's the perfect ambient for the perfect game. The music is the perfect accompaniment to carry out your plans to defeat a handful of thugs without being noticed. Voices and FX are great too, like the other aspects of the game.

Graphics has no defects, making a compact game without nothing to threw it up. Animations are amazing, special facial animation, and textures are magnificent. You can admire that work with the models in the main menu, by unlocking some concrete secrets. Stages are big with many details and different elements.

Gameplay is precise, not just the incredible battle system. Moving all around the island is a pleasure using all your "powers", soon you'll feel comfortable with the controls and you'll be exploring the whole island without any problem. A good point for the game is the fact that you don't have to open the menu to select a weapon, you only have a map screen (and the secrets and biographies) and nothing more, so, the game is very flowed. You have also different difficulty levels.

If all that's not enough, there are secrets all over the island. You'll be addicted soon to find them all because it's not something really difficult, and it's really funny. To help, you can take the secrets map (which is also a secret) in the game to know where they are hidden. That's something good because most of the times you'll find that valuable item once you've reached most of the secrets of a concrete area, and with the map you will not spend a lot of time wondering where the hell are the rest of the secrets.

To finish with, besides the main story and the secrets on it, you have a challenge mode where you have to reach a score (in beat 'em up challenges) or achieve concrete goals (the stealth ones). Stealth mode is specially funny, with many different goals to gain the medals. Without any doubt, a extra mode for a perfect game.

The Bad
There are no things that I didn't like of this game. The worst thing of the game is that it's not long, but it's so funny that it looks that it lasts the half. When you're near the end you'll start to pray for more.

To find fault with the game, most of the big enemies need the use of the batarang to defeat them. Only the battle with Joker and the one with Poison Ivy are different about that.

The big problem of a game like this is the fact that the shadow of the game is going to be really long, and to repeat its success something really hard.

The Bottom Line
Arkham Aylum is one of the best games made in a long time, not just the best superhero game, I'm talking in general terms. You'll feel like you're the dark knight, knowing all the things that you're going to do in each moment making possible incredible strategies for a game that combines stealth with beat 'em up.

Fear the dark knight.

by NeoJ (398) on Dec 6th, 2009 · Windows

Unique in many ways

The Good
I am going to do things a bit different from other times and I would really appreciate a little feedback. If anybody reads this, I would love it if you could send me a PM on this website and tell me if this new style of reviewing is better than my usual method. With that said, enjoy the review and thanks for any help you may offer:

The game is very accessible to people interested in the game, but without back-story. Only a few lore-references and useful character bios.

The combat is very smooth and fun due to the fast moves and overall intuitive controls.

Sneaking feels satisfying and tactful.

The story is well-written and additional dialogue tapes help to flesh it out a little.

Story is also well-paced.

Fun challenges to be found.

The commentary you hear characters giving changes depending on where you are and at what stage of the game.

The Bad
The Joker is not as visceral as he was in the movie.

DRM is beyond stupid.

The game is very linear, but has a lot of open areas with no enemies in it. This leaves me with an hour of work every time I come somewhere new.

Detective vision is obnoxious

Very often you need to go to insane lengths to save random characters who die a few minutes afterwards anyway.

Boss-fights aren't spectacular.

The Bottom Line

In this game the player takes control of Batman who has just apprehended his rival, an insane murderer called The Joker. Upon returning him to the asylum (that is located on a large) island Joker makes an escape and releases all the convicts, including some of the major villains from the Batman lore. The island quickly falls under Joker's control and it's up to Batman to punch all the villains back into their holding cells.

What is interesting is that Batman comics go back to like 1939, but the game demands little to no knowledge from the player. Instead, the game turns around the isolated event on the island and characters never really talk about events that go back too far or are unconnected to the task at hand. This is comparable to how you can play Mario Galaxy 2 and never ever have to have touched upon a NES before. For those who are interested in learning more there are a number of character bios and interviews that can be found in-game (more on that later) that flesh out the characters a bit more.

Another major plus is that not all the villains in the Batman lore make an appearance. Prior to playing this game, I took the time to sit down and watch "The Dark Knight", after that I looked up a list of Batman villains and found myself somewhat staggered. The game instead circles around a core group of the more interesting villains; Joker, Harley Quinn, Scarecrow, Killer Croc, Poison Ivy and Bane. The pacing is also not too bad and at the beginning you notice that Batman is struggling to get his bearings, but as time passes you will soon take out the first villain and then run them all down a lot quicker. It doesn't feel too rushed, but at the same time it never really drags on too much either. If I have to give out one complaint though, it's that Joker is not as insane as he was in the movie and comes off more as a clown. While that is certainly the idea of the character and heck he even wears clown make-up for crying out loud, in the movie he was more than just that and came off as very threatening too. He also uses guns to kill people a lot, while in the movie his kills were very well-crafted and visceral (such as ramming a man's head into a needle stuck in a table early on).


Batman: Arkham Asylum is a very rare example of a game that brilliantly mixes combat and stealth together in one tasty soup. The reason for why Batman always appealed to me as a character is that he doesn't have superpowers, he can't just conjure webs out of the ether or turn into a green giant. Batman has to use his wits and his hard-earned combat abilities to make it through the day and that is very visible in this game too. When combat shows up, Batman stands out as an obvious powerhouse, but when enemies bring guns into the fray or alarms, you'll have to sneak through ventilation shafts and hang from the ceilings to survive properly.

While the sneaking does work really well, I often went for combat regardless of that. The reason is that the game utilizes a very clever engine that makes combat feel very flowing and natural. You don't just awkwardly string together combos, you will have to deal quick blows, switch between baddies and keep an eye out for enemies that you can counter. When punching you can also steer in a direction to make Batman leap for another enemy and this is where the flow comes in. Because you can switch so easily I managed to rack up pretty decent combos and for once enjoy a beat-em up game.

Navigating through the asylum works pretty well too, but lacking an auto-run functions is kind of obnoxious. If auto-run turned off for stealth sections, then that would make sense, but here you have to keep your thumb on the space in order to run. Especially when backtracking this can get very annoying or when you're spotted by some armed thugs and kinda want to get the hell out of the fight. Other then that, Batman uses a variety of gadgets that help him opening up parts of the asylum; a grapple hook allows him to reach ledges normally out of reach, explosive gel blows up weak walls, a claw can pull down items and that line-thingy can help you cross large gaps. There is also small computer that allows Batman to hack doors and open them up.


Batman has a problem that I run into an awkward amount of times lately and that is graphics that are simply too dark. Even when messing around with the Gamma-settings a bit, the game's environments are still so dark that I run into walls or have to zoom in if I want to see anything. The art-style is also very familiar to people who play a lot of modern games and this title seeks to recreate the realistic and gritty feel that the movie had as well. It's not too bad, but I feel like opportunities are been missed to go all-out with Joker's style.

Overall Batman does a decent job in terms of presentation, but it never rises past it. Perhaps the only remarkable points are some of the story-heavy sections that often involve Scarecrow, something we rarely see in mainstream games these days. If anything, it proves that a widely popular title (6.3 million copies sold!) doesn't need to have a tacked-on multi-player of any kind. I was however surprised when I was browsing some articles on relyonhorror.com and found that Batman was credited as an "honorable mention" among horror games. I admit that the Scarecrow sections are fascinating a way, but horror is a much different kind of sandwich, if you ask me.

One thing that I have to mention, even though it has little to do with in-game presentation, is the irritation that is caused by the DRM present in this game. I have debated with myself over purchasing this game for at least a month, not because I wasn't sure if I would like it, but because I tried a pirated copy to see if the game was fun, but ran into so many layers of excessive protection that I started to doubt if the game was customer-friendly or not. Tucked away in the smallest corner of the sales page is a note saying "4 times activation limit", meaning the game may only be activated on four different systems. This is vague at best because sometimes replacing the hardware on your system counts as a separate activation in the world of DRM and sometimes it can just mean that every single re-installation eats up another precious activation. Even when buying the game on a service as great as Steam, this rule still applies, even though it goes in against everything Steam stands for. Also obnoxious is the forced use of Games for Windows Live, which literally demands that you log into or make a Windows Live account in order to freaking SAVE your game. This is once again regardless of whether or not you are using Steam, ignoring the fact that Steam has a Cloud service and can make save-files locally on the user's system.


Batman: Arkham Asylum actually strikes me as a game that isn't too bad to pick up and replay every once in a while. The focus on combat and the lack of expository cut-scenes makes sure that you never really have to sit through anything grating and in the few cases that the game does take away the control from you, the cut-scene that follows it can often be skipped immediately. The game also has several difficulties, so after completing it once, it can be fun to revisit if with a meatier challenge ahead of of you.

The game however offers little in terms of customization and while it is possible to get upgrades for Batman, you get enough points to get everything that's available to you. Even if that was not the case, the upgrades don't really make much of a difference to the gameplay, so it's unlikely you're experience will differ that much from the first time you played.


Though the Joker is your main target throughout the game, there is a very large side-story on the side which involves "The Riddler". As the name implies, this villain is obsessed with Riddles and would very much like to test his wit against Batman's detective skills. His challenges come in several different kinds, the most prominent of which are the actual Riddles. Every time you enter a room where a challenge lies, you get a message containing a riddle. You then need to look for the item that the riddle refers to and use detective vision to capture it. Detective vision is a mode in which you get a colored filter over the screen, all the enemies show their skeletons (X-ray) and important items start to glow. It sounds interesting, but since you pretty much need to have it on all the time to spot Snipers, weak walls and receive general information, it feels like something that should have been implemented better, preferably in the regular HUD.

Aside from the riddles there is also a large amount of collectibles that you can find; "Arkham statues" that reveal a large part of the asylum's background story are hidden in secret locations, Interview tapes are character-specific recordings that flesh out the villains a bit, Joker Teeth are obnoxious buggers that you can destroy and the trophies are more or less filler content. This brings the total of collectible items to 240. To make this more do-able, the game provides you with constant commentary from Riddler himself, which is very enjoyable. What starts out as arrogant comments soon turns into disbelief as you slowly solve each and every single riddle.

That's where the in-game content ends, but outside of the story, there is also a challenge mode. Personally I have always resented these modes and this particular one is a clear example as to why. The challenges all exist outside of the story and contribute little to nothing to the narrative or experience of the game. All they do is put you in a room with a few baddies and say "Hey, hope you mastered the mechanics. Good luck". There is not even a set goal, you sort of need to get a certain amount of points in order to get the best ranking and if you don't get the best rankings, you won't be able to get a 100% save. I have always stood by the notion that getting a 100% should always be a case of will; I was willing to spend hours scouring every last nook and cranny for the collectibles, I was willing to see the story through to the end, I was willing to go through the many fights just to get all the upgrades. Challenge modes aren't about will, but more about skill, which is a completely different kind of virtue. If a casual player were to put in all the hours to get the items and even complete the game, then he or she will run into a brick wall, just because they aren't capable of putting together endless combos with varied attacks.


Before we finish this up, I would like to remind all readers that I would really appreciate feedback on this new style. You can send me a PM on this website or my Backloggery account of the same name, thanks once again for any help you can offer. Back to the important things though: a recommendation. Well, fans of the Caped Crusader are certainly in for a treat with this one, but like I said before, you don't need to be a fan to get into this game. The combat, decent presentation and good integration of the story make this a very appealing game for the mainstream-gamer and the extra content offers a nice challenge for the Completionists out there. Casual players are also not excluded, but not particularly played to either.

by Asinine (957) on Jul 21st, 2012 · Windows

Atmospheric and Innovative Stealth-Action

The Good
For all the impact he's had on comics and all other kinds of media, Batman's portrayal and success as character has always been confusing. He's innately dissonant in nature: here we have an emotionally scarred, near sociopathic man haunted by events of his childhood, who fights crime in a grim dystopian city where it's always night and the glass is always half full (...of BLOOD!). One who dresses up in a rubber animal suit and is directly responsible for many of the tropes of the campy, childish silver and golden ages of comics. This disconnect is most jarring in the comparison of the infamous Adam West Batman of the 60's TV show and classic comics, and the gritty, harsh, GODDAMNED BATMAN of the modern age and the Dark Knight film series: the same character seen in a different light can become completely unrecognizable. If anything, Batman's characterization has been dreadfully inconsistent, which is not too big a deal, especially considering his roots in comics. However one thing is certain, which Arkham Asylum makes perfectly clear: Batman is a Badass.

Much as the animated series of the 90's has been praised for, the Batman of Arkham Asylum perfectly balances the new and the older sillier Batmans from across the decades. Dark and edgy but also completely unashamed of its quirky comic roots. Not just for Batman as a character but for the franchise as a whole: while it is most reminiscent of the aforementioned animated TV series (mostly due to its returning voice actors and script penned by writer Paul Dini), this is no specific Batman, but ALL of them. And the sum is most definitely greater than all of its parts, because this is arguably the best adaptation of Batman the franchise has ever seen. A celebration of what makes Batman great: The Essential Batman.

Arkham Asylum, uncommon for a licensed game, is completely unique in its execution. Whereas most licensed games can usually be summarized as something along the lines of "RPG", "shooter" or most common historically, "platformer", Batman is its own animal. It's sort of a cross between a gadget-based action-adventure like Zelda, with a battle system somewhat like a 3D beat 'em up, and a completely unique take on stealth like nothing that has come before.

As expected, gameplay relies heavily on utility belt gadgets, such as batarangs, bat explosive goo, and at least three variations on the bat grappling hook. Speaking of which, echoing Bionic Commando, the jump button is gone and replaced by a grappling hook, and arguably for the better. It's automatically aimed and fired at the press of a button, and will have you zipping around rooms, from ledge to ledge or gargoyle to gargoyle with ease. The whole thing feels extremely streamlined, but manages not to come across as being too casual-friendly: the easier to manage controls make it less aggravating and allows the player to deal with the tense and difficult stealth combat situations, rather than having to wrestle with the controls. Other toys are used in predictable but welcome ways, such as the explosive gel which serves as the remote-controlled answer to Link's bombs, or the upgraded bat-grapple which is used to pull down obstacles and reel in enemies.

In terms of exploration, it is fairly solid and comparable to something like Metroid Fusion in its structure and linearity - a semi-linear exploratory adventure game with frequent options side-paths and optional backtracking, and a linear main road with frequent twists and turns. It does a decent job disguising its relatively straightforward path by making it sometimes difficult to find exactly what is the right way out of the particular puzzle room you're in, and littering the various secret trapdoors and air ducts with hidden character logs and collectible trophies courtesy of Batman's nemesis, The Riddler, who is portrayed as a bloodthirsty and insane genius with an inferiority complex. One of the most satisfying aspects to the exploration is solving his riddles, which are given as hints leading you to various decorative objects lying around the Asylum, sometimes hidden in plain sight, sometimes devilishly hard to find. These unlock character bios for plenty of people in the bat's rogues' gallery, some of them very obscure.

Melee combat is adequate. You have a fairly standard punch and kick combo, as well as some throws and takedowns which seem to be used automatically when the combo meter is racked up. Every standard attack is initiated with the press of a single button. More interestingly, you have the ability to interrupt and counter any incoming melee attack with the press of another button and proper timing. Opportunities for these maneuvers are shown by a symbol appearing over enemies' heads, depending on difficulty. You also have a finishing attack, usually smashing enemies' faces into the floor with your enormous fist. This is all liberally sprinkled with a healthy dose of slow motion. It's mostly unnoticeable while you are playing, but when watching someone else play the amount of slow motion is fairly jarring. It runs extremely smoothly with very few cheap deaths - you are given a directional dodge roll which mercifully seems to make you invincible to attacks that only graze your hitbox, and the counter system allows you to make it through most altercations unharmed, with skill. Things get a little tense when enemies with unblockable knives, assault rifles, or worse, stun guns show up, but you soon learn how to prioritize and take out mooks in the proper order depending on what they're carrying. There are few differences between enemies besides what weapon they're carrying, but it manages to mix things up enough to keep things interesting.

The boss battles are a mixed bag. The introspective drug-induced hallucinations provided by the Scarecrow are surreal and atmospheric with excellent sound and art direction. But the way you actually fight him isn't particularly amazing. Similarly, the boss fight with Poison Ivy is quite visually impressive but consists mainly of 'shoot the boss in its weakpoint and don't get hit'. Worst of all is Killer Croc's battle, which should have been tense and unnerving, but is effectively tedious due to its ease and predictability. Additionally, there are an alarming number of re-skinned minibosses which are fought by simply throwing a batarang and side-dodging.

The main attraction and what will most likely win the player over is the stealth combat. Typical of stealth games, you can crawl through ducts, lurk directly over mooks' heads without them looking up, and peek around corners. What makes this completely different from Hitman or Metal Gear Solid where you enter and dispatch enemies completely undetected, is that your enemies will inevitably know you are there, watching them from the shadows. And you want them to. As you take them down one by one, you can watch and hear them become noticeably more agitated, looking over their shoulder often, shooting at random noises, and nervously shouting at you when they have no idea where you're coming from. This is all supplemented by the hilariously malicious taunts of the Joker, who is quite possibly the worst person anyone could ever work for. And hunting them down feels really good. There are no enemies in Arkham Asylum: only your prey.

One of the most helpful items to supplement your stealth in Arkham Asylum is the Detective Mode, a sort of X-ray vision and all-purpose scanner for the various forensic activities the game has you participate in. More effectively, this amounts to institutionalized wall-hacks, allowing you to see enemy skeletons from anywhere in the room, as well as whether they are carrying a weapon. X-ray vision in stealth is nothing completely new (Perfect Dark may have been the first example), but this game does it so well that when gadgets of the sort become standard equipment in the stealth action hero's toolbox, they will have most likely done so following Batman's example. Knowing where baddies are at all times is extremely helpful, and going back to sneaking around otherwise will be quite difficult. Besides that, it highlights in orange items of interest such as the many convenient human-sizes air vents for you to sneak around in, as well as breakable walls and collectibles. This presents a minor problem, as with no disadvantage to leaving it on constantly, players will inevitably run around with the screen completely blue-tinted and outlined, obscuring the beautiful graphics.

On that point Arkham Asylum doesn't disappoint. While it suffers slightly from the same graphical problems as most 7th-gen games, with textures and normal lighting giving characters and certain objects the appearance of naugahide or resin anime figures, it looks impressive in motion, and even seems to have passed that textural uncanny valley for some character models, especially Batman's, in game. The textures for Bruce's enormous, manly chin are so high-res you can easily see his hair follicles in glorious HD. And the game takes pleasure in you doing so: during the events in the game, Batman grows an astounding amount of stubble to accompany his battle-torn bat-suit, over the course of only a few hours. Other characters weren't as lucky. Harley Quinn, in her horrifying and sexy new outfit, has hair which appears to be made of PVC. Something similar happens with Poison Ivy, where the vines covering her almost naked body are cut from the same polygons as her skin and cloth, with normal lighting compensating for the compromised geometry. One annoying flaw is the foliage: in 2009 I never thought I would see plants rendered with the 'clusters of leaves turning so they always face the camera' effect, but it still appears even in an otherwise graphically superior game. Those flaws aside, the game looks simply excellent.

The characters are presented with plenty of charisma, especially Batman himself who oozes manliness (er, in a family-friendly way of course). Voice actors from the well-received animated series reprise their roles for major characters, and the new guys they got to do voice work do a very good job as well. There are no voiceovers that fall below the line of adequate. The music is dark and heroic, and fits the tone of the game perfectly. The writing isn't particularly amazing for its dialog, but the storyline itself is fairly engaging. As expected it has Batman facing the Joker in Arkham Asylum, where all hell has broken loose. While following the Joker's trail Batman uncovers a conspiracy involving Arkham staff to produce a toxin with effects like super-steroids. You apprehend various Batman villains one by one and save the day.

The Bad
Overall, Arkham Asylum is nearly flawless. The framerate drops occasionally at obvious loading spots, and it sports the same styrofoam physics engine games have been using since early last gen which often does humorous things with ragdolls. But for a game with such seemingly open stealth combat and pseudo-platforming, there are surprisingly few bugs. In a single playthrough I encountered only two such errors, and neither were game-breaking, one only requiring me to load from the checkpoint which was passed a few seconds earlier.

The game is a bit shorter than perfectly ideal. It feels like it would have been the perfect length if you took on just one more villain before the (somewhat anti-climactic) final showdown, perhaps Mr. Freeze. Nevertheless it should be seen as to the game's credit that it's over before it wears out its welcome.

Another thing that will bother anyone used to games such as Fallout 3, where nearly every single device can be picked up, read, hacked or otherwise interacted with is that very few of the objects seen lying around really do anything. Almost nothing even has physics with which you can knock it around or play with it, as pointless as that may sound. Everything that is even remotely important is highlighted orange when looked at through your detective mode scanner. One can only imagine how much more immersive and entertaining the game would have been if you could interact with the various books and terminals scattered about the asylum.

The PC version isn't inferior at all to its console counterparts, but it does not take full advantage of the platform. There are no options to change the controls in-game - you have to do it from the launch menu. Other luxuries PC gamers might be used to such as quicksaving are also absent. Make no mistake, this is a PC port of a console game. There is some rather nasty DRM present even in the Steam release, which may bother some. None of this is a big enough inconvenience to make the PC version worth skipping.

The Bottom Line
Minor nitpicking aside, as a complete package Arkham Asylum does not disappoint on any front, something highly admirable for a licensed game. While it is undoubtedly the best comic-based game ever, one need not be a fan of Batman to find something to love here - it is an excellent game in its own right, and anyone with an interest in action, stealth, or cinematic games should check it out.

by GeoffPS (24) on Nov 11th, 2009 · Windows

I'm Batman

The Good
I got sucked into the game, I almost forgot what time is it. The gameplay is really awesome, the combat mode is really addictive, makes you want to fight a lot of enemy and not getting hit the same time. The graphics too is astonishing, the story is good. All the thumbs I have is all up, yeah!

The Bad
The only down of the game is that I didn't get to fight the other enemies like Mr. Freeze, Catwoman, The Penguin, and other major villains. Also didn't get to ride the Batmobile and the Batjet. Other than that, no more.

The Bottom Line
A-must-play game, the experience is awesome especially when fighting enemies, the flow of animation during combat mode is seamless. Just be careful not to be addicted. =)

by Valroman Francisco (30) on Dec 23rd, 2009 · Windows

Plus 75 player ratings without reviews

Contributors to this Entry

Critic reviews added by Caliner, Dariusz Sadkowski, Patrick Bregger, Alsy, Cavalary, CalaisianMindthief, Zerobrain, Geamandura, jaXen, Cantillon, chirinea, Jeanne, Renat Shagaliev.