Darkest of Nights | Batman: Arkham Origins Review
Updated: Apr 17, 2019
The third installment of the Arkham Series, this is a prequel to the first game Arkham Asylum, five years prior in the timeline. It’s Christmas Eve and Arkham's worst has broken out from Arkham Prison. It's up to Batman to stop the bad guys, and survive through the hardest night of his life.
So Batman stumbles upon a plot to end his life, again. The bad guy, Sionus Black, hires the world’s greatest assassins to kill batman through a 50 million dollar bounty on his head. Sure Batman could stay indoors and pass the night, but what kind of fun would that be? Besides, he can’t just the assassins wreck havoc upon Gotham.
Alfred has got dinner warmed up, but Batman’s gotta do what Batman’s gotta do.
The graphics in the game is stellar. This game's graphics is extremely polished. For an open world game, frame rates are steady without any noticeable lag or pops. Object interactions are smooth, and Batman reacts well to his environments, jumping off walls mid-combo, with destructible objects galore.
The cut scenes are superb. There is a clear difference in the CGI and in-game cutscenes, but the quality difference isn’t extremely noticeable. The good thing is that the way they laid out the cut scenes really immerse you in the game. It would flow straight from mid combat to cut scene to plot line development and segue back to gameplay.
I was disappointed that the Kings of Batman VO, Kevin Conroy and Mark Hamill did not reprise their iconic roles for this game, but with talents like Roger Craig Smith, and Troy Baker as the Joker, our main characters were preserved well. They are famous in the industry, and kudos for their brilliant voice acting in this game.
Interestingly, there was a decision to provide access to the majority of the equipment at the start, so the learning curve is slightly steeper than the previous batman games. They automatically assume you know ground takedown is RT+Y (triangle) and that combo takedowns are Y+B and so on, without teaching you in some sort of tutorial. The lack of scaffolding may turn new players to the series off.
Combat is smooth, if not smoother than previous games, and you’ll find yourself enjoy watching Batman using his different combos and moving around and interacting with the environment accordingly. The game mixes it up with hand to hand combat, puzzles which you use your tools to solve, cryptographic sequence puzzles, and predator missions.
The predator missions are, in my opinion, the best. You feel bad-ass swooping around from gargoyle to gargoyle, hanging bad guys and taking down unsuspecting sniper watches. Then you sneak around and silently take down foes. It absolutely nails the mood of a Batman game.
The difficulty is moderate throughout the game. If you’re familiar with Asylum and City, you’re probably not gonna have problems, but on New Game+, clearing large groups of enemies have proven to be quite difficult for me, personally.
All I can advise you is, keep calm, be on the defensive, dodge as many attacks as you can, and fit in as many punches as you can in between without leaving yourself too vulnerable.
In the end, I enjoyed the game through and through. It proved difficult at some points, but it was challenging, not torturing. I really love this game and really just can’t fault it. The story moved at a good pace, and even though there was quite a bit of traveling in between, I didn’t really mind, cause there were a lot of things to do. I got sidetracked constantly, with the many side missions along the way.
I never was short or something to do. I got lost in Arkham City the way a good game should immerse you in. Everything you do, batman say, draws you deeper into that world. Every plot line and development make you yearn for more. This is really something every batman fan can’t miss.