Review by PSPztilb
"There's not really too much more you can ask for."
Batman: Arkham Asylum delivers a very solid, entertaining experience, and manages to keep things consistent and fun throughout its entire length. You play as Batman, doing rather Batman-ish things, when suddenly Joker, and now you're trapped in the Asylum. The game does a very good job of hammering in the idea that you are playing as Batman, and as such, are capable of doing everything he can.
Plot and Story:
The plot in Arkham Asylum has beautiful pacing, and never really falters during its length. The game is maybe ten hours long, provided you don't head for the extra challenges, and the game never hits a dead-spot during this playtime. The overall story for Arkham is simple, but well put together and enjoyable. Describing it in too much detail would of course spoil things, but I can still tell you that it's entertaining, and awesome to witness.
The gameplay in Arkham Asylum is perhaps the most well thought-out part of the game. You're given control of Batman, and Rocksteady does an excellent job of making you feel like it. You're presented with an array of gadgets to solve puzzles, take out enemies, and navigate the environment. Neither the gadgets or puzzles feel tedious, and are often very clever and entertaining in design. The hand-to-hand combat in the game is quite a transition from the puzzles, but not an uneasy one. During battle, you press the square button to attack, the game responds immediately, and you hit something. Simple enough, but enemies rush in from all directions, and new mechanics and ways to attack are thrown in to spice things up. Both the combat and puzzle solving rarely get boring, if ever. The boss fights are also excellently presented and well done. They often feel like a throwback to older 3D action game bosses, which I enjoyed.
Graphics and Presentation:
Excellent. Arkham Asylum looks fantastic, as do the character models. There's never a hiccup in the scenery, clipping is minimal, and the game immerses you instantly and constantly into its design. The graphics work in unison with the gameplay to deliver a very solid look and feel to the Dark Knight and his movements. The lip synching may not be perfect, but you'd have to try to notice something wrong, and that's just silly.
Music and Atmosphere: Not gonna lie, the music in Asylum isn't all that noticeable. Some people seem to think that's a good thing, some don't. I'm pretty firm in my belief that it isn't. The music in Arkham is too quiet, and blends in too well. That may sound silly, being that music is often a big part of Atmosphere, but the music in Arkham may as well not be there with how invisible it is. Other than that, the game does a brilliant job with its atmosphere, and does the best job anything could at immersing you in its setting.
This is a great game. As the night goes on in Arkham, you can see and feel things changing and building up. New gadgets, gameplay mechanics, goons, puzzles, you name it, are introduced at fair and pleasing intervals. The game never gets repetitive or stale, and it's fun to play the whole way through. You can't really ask for more.
Reviewer's Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
Originally Posted: 01/19/12
Game Release: Batman: Arkham Asylum (US, 08/25/09)
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