EDITORIAL: 6 Things That Have Me Excited For BATMAN: ARKHAM KNIGHT

The release of  ‘Batman: Arkham Knight’ is  just under three weeks away! With new features like a drivable Batmobile, Dual-Play, and Riddler race tracks. I’m taking this opportunity to talk about the things I’m most excited to see in the final chapter of Rocksteady’s extraordinary trilogy.
Spoiler Warning for those who haven’t played Batman: Arkham Asylum  and Batman: Arkham City.
                                                                                   6. Duel-Play

Last month Rocksteady released a trailer, that showcased a new feature called ‘Duel-Play’. This allows you to enter a mission as Batman and team-up with a partner (Robin, Nightwing etc.). You can switch between characters with a press of a button, without breaking your combo!  This is the first time in the franchise Batman has fought side-by-side with another hero. Personally, I can’t wait to play as Batman and Nightwing! It adds a new element to the almost flawless free-flow combat that the series is known for, switching between the dynamic duo in combat and predator missions is something fans have been wanting since the start of the franchise in Batman: Arkham Asylum.
          5. The Return of the Riddler

The Riddler adds a whole different dynamic to the game. Whether it’s solving riddles, saving hostages or hunting down those pesky ‘Riddler Trophies’. He has been a prominent thorn in Batman’s side since the beginning. What makes The Riddler missions a great side story, is that he makes you think (or sometimes Google) yourself out of  situations. While the combat and stealth portions of the game are great, they don’t take long to figure out, especially if you played the previous two three games. This is when The Riddler shines, he doesn’t what to beat Batman physically, he wants to beat him mentally. Riddler has found a new way to (try) beat Batman, Riddler believes if he destroys the car he can expose the man. Now with a set of race tracks under Gotham City, Riddler puts Batman and the Batmobile to the ultimate test!

      4. Life without The Joker

Batman; Arkham City had one of the most shocking endings in video game history, Batman’s most iconic villain, The Joker, dies. Killing Mister J was a bold move by Rocksteady, and they aren’t backing down from it, they’ve stated many times that he is dead and is staying dead. With Arkham Knight taking place one year after Batman: Arkham City, it is going to be interesting to see how Batman and the rest of Gotham City are taking the loss of the Clown Prince of Crime. Who has risen to power in The Joker’s absence? Is Harley Quinn still mourning his death? What happened to Clayface? We have a lot more questions that need to be answered, hopefully they will all be addressed when Batman: Arkham Knight releases in the coming weeks.

    3.  Play as Red Hood and Harley Quinn

Batman: Arkham Knight has a total of seven playable characters, this is by far the most in the series. What makes playing as Red Hood and Harley Quinn so interesting is you’re playing the bad guy. In one corner we have Jason Todd, formerly known as Robin, he was killed by the Joker and brought back to life (not known how in the Arkhamverse), returning as the Red Hood and showing no mercy to criminals. In the other corner we have Harleen Quinzel, a former psychiatrist at Arkham Asylum, who falls madly in love with the Joker, joins him and becomes Harley Quinn. That’s just the short version of their stories. Each coming with their own story pack, Harley Quinn and Red Hood bring a new level of violence to the Arkhamverse, Red Hood shoots thugs from point blank range, while Harley gasses policemen with a deadly laughing gas. Jason and Harley are two anti-heroes who are beloved for completely different reasons. One being a hero out for blood, and the other being so crazy she’s instantly lovable. As far as anti-heroes go, Harley Quinn and Red Hood rank near the top.
Note: Red Hood is only playable if you pre-order from Gamestop. Harley Quinn is playable when you pre-order  from anywhere. 

2. The Rogues Gallery

The main antagonist of Batman: Arkham Knight is Scarecrow. He has assembled a team of Batman’s biggest enemies, Harley Quinn, Penguin, Two-Face, Poison Ivy etc. Scarecrow hasn’t been seen since Killer Croc nearly killed him in Arkham Asylum. Now coming back with a vengeance, Scarecrow wants to end Batman and all who follow him, once and for all. While Scarecrow and his fear toxin are enough of a problem for The Caped Crusader, the biggest addition is a new character created by Rocksteady known as The Arkham Knight. The Arkham Knight has it out for Batman, with an army of soldiers, tanks, and drones backing him, our new antagonist  is going to push Batman to the limit. So far we know absolutely nothing about The Arkham Knight, theories about his identity range from Jason Todd to a revived Joker, some even think it could be Damien Wayne. This character is intriguing because no one outside of Rocksteady Studios knows a single detail about him, making the inevitable unmasking one the most anticipated moments in Arkham Knight.
          1. Be The Batman

I’ve mentioned Villains, Allies, Downloadable Content, and Race Tracks, but the heart and soul of this franchise is Batman. Whether its racing down the streets of Gotham, clearing a room of armed thugs without making a sound, gliding through the skyline of China Town, or beating a gang with your bare hands, Rocksteady’s goal from day one was to make you feel like you’re The Batman. Adding The Batmobile and setting the game in Gotham City was the final step needed to complete the Batman experience. With two masterpieces in Arkham Asylum and Arkham City under their belt, I can’t wait to see where they take things next in the final chapter of this revolutionary series! Did this get you even more excited for Batman: Arkham Knight? Let me know in the comments.  
Batman: Arkham Knight releases on June 23rd, 2015 on PS4, Xbox One, and PC
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