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Batman: Arkham City preview

Batman: Arkham City

Can Batman finally beat his enemies?


We need to turn Batman into what he hates the most, namely us


If you asked me what game I was most looking forward to this year, I would say Deus Ex: Human Revolution or Elder Scrolls: Skyrim. If, however, you asked me what game I was most likely to play six times from start to finish and consider replaying immediately as soon as I reach the end every time, I’d answer Batman: Arkham City. That’s what happened with Arkham Asylum anyway, and I fully expect the same to happen again.

As I write this, we’ve just had the reveal that the on-again off-again love interest/antagonist Catwoman will be playable in the main campaign of the game – no repeat of the Joker Challenge Map, as it’s been described as taking up 10% of the game. The ridiculously sexed-up trailer shows Ms. Selina Kyle using a bolo to tie up thugs, her trademark whip to swing around the city, and a more lithe fast-paced fighting/playing style – unlike Batman’s more precise and powerful movements.

Now, I’m not too worried about anything in Batman: Arkham City, but if you’ll permit me a quick moan... I’m cross about this, and I know I’m not alone. I do not want to play as Catwoman, at least not in the main story. A bonus for finishing the game, co-operative mode, or Challenge Maps? Sure. But actually in the game itself? Thanks, but no thanks.

A kiss can be even deadlier if you mean it


I want to play as Batman. Arkham Asylum is the only game that has ever got Batman perfectly right, and I have played that game a dozen times. I value the time I play as Batman in the game. I like Catwoman, but I don’t want to be her, nor do I want to play as her. I bought the Batman Begins game, knowing it’d be bad, just to play as Batman – I did not do the same for Halle Berry’s Catwoman. At the very least, I would’ve simply preferred to have playing as her a surprise rather than being told now.

Right, enough bitching, more information. Playing Catwoman is much the same as playing the Dark Knight, just faster and a bit less powerful. Considering that she’s wearing what appears to be just some high-heeled shoes and a load of body-paint I’m not surprised she can’t quite take the punishment Mr. Wayne can. Still, a kiss followed by a high-heeled boot to the face hurts no matter how sexy the boot-wearer is.

She’ll have her own Challenge Maps, her own side-story, and even her own set of upgrades. I don’t know if you actually start the game as Catwoman (which would be a nice twist), but her first appearance leads up to the scene from the first gameplay trailer with Harvey “Two-Face” Dent holding her hostage. Guess it’s Batman to the rescue then.

Game Screenshots