Gotham in ‘Batman: Arkham Knight’ is 5 Times Larger than ‘Arkham City’

By October 1, 2014
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Here at GeekNation, we’ve been pretty open and honest about the outright love for the Batman: Arkham game series. We’ve posted comprehensive reviews on every game (Arkham AsylumArkham CityArkham Origins, and Arkham Origins – Blackgate), have conducted interviews with talent involved with the series, and spilled every detail we knew practically the minute after Arkham Knight‘s announcement. Naturally, when a new bit of news comes to fruition about Rocksteady Studios’ finale with the Dark Knight, we pay attention — especially when the news is literally this big.

The universally acclaimed second game in the beloved series, 2011's Arkham City leaves some massive boots to fill. Arkham Knight gets the chance next year.

The universally acclaimed second game in the beloved series, 2011’s Arkham City, leaves some massive boots to fill. Arkham Knight gets the chance next year.

At last week’s EGX gaming convention in London, IGN managed to grab a few words with Rocksteady marketing manager Guy Perkins, and he discussed the inherent elements that each of the previous Arkham games created by the developer tried to bring to the forefront in their explorations of the titular character. He talked about the pride the studio takes in the narratives they create, and how each of the stories in the previous games have been designed around a core facet of gameplay.

Obviously Asylum was the starting point for that, but the intimate cat-and-mouse gameplay between the Joker and Batman really demanded it took place in the pressure cooker of the Asylum. So that had its place for that story, but then we took that into the open world to give players the next piece of the Batman armor as it were, which is the grappling gun and the ability to glide. The introduction of those pieces really required a bigger game world to support them, but then the big thing that was always missing for us was the Batmobile. It was always missing but wouldn’t have worked in Asylum or City, so to build an open-world around that was crucial.

These words should be particularly encouraging for Batman fans, since the new, defining element of the forthcoming game — the iconic Batmobile — is obviously one of the most advanced and capable machines and weapons in Batman’s entire arsenal. Batman, of course, needs a vehicle to traverse the harsh Gotham streets that is unmatched in terms of speed and deft mobility, and it seems that the development team at Rocksteady understand that. That means that such a behemoth of a vehicle can’t barrel through narrow streets with somewhat limited length — you have to unleash the boundaries of the city so that the car can have room in which to thrive.

To that end, Perkins states that the game map in Arkham Knight is about 5 times larger than the one present in Arkham City, in order to accommodate everything that the team wanted to do with the Batmobile, and allow the player to freely roam around the city very much as Batman himself would.

Perkins also let slip that the development of Arkham Knight didn’t exactly start recently. Apparently, it began even before Arkham City shipped to retailers in October of 2011. The studio is very conscious of the fact that they want to go out on a high note with the series that put both themselves and Batman on the proverbial video game “map.”

We gave them Gotham City, we gave them Batman at the height of his powers and we gave them the Batmobile. I think those three elements come together to make a great game. If people go away feeling like it was awesome, we’ve done a good job.

Gamers worldwide will get their chance to find out if they deliver another knockout punch to the adventure game genre when Batman: Arkham Knight glides onto store shelves and into digital download queues on June 2nd, 2015.

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Chris Clow
As a former comics retailer at a store in the Pacific Northwest, Chris Clow is an enormous sci-fi, comics, and film geek. He is a freelance contributor, reviewer, podcaster, and overall geek to GeekNation, Batman-On-Film.com, The Huffington Post, and Movies.com. He also hosts the monthly Comics on Consoles broadcast and podcast. Check out his blog, and follow him on Twitter @ChrisClow.