Batman: 10 Things Unique Only To The Rocksteady Arkham Version Of The Character
Rocksteady’s Batman Arkham series sits atop a pedestal of excellence. The dark, gritty open-world games tell a compelling story of the Dark Knight protecting Gotham. Each game saw Batman go up against not just one or two baddies, but nearly his entire rogue gallery. Whether it was Arkham Asylum or in the streets of Gotham, countless thugs were asking to get their heads knocked in.
There have been many iterations of the characters since his debut in 1939. Whether he was in movies, television shows, games, or comics, Batman always sought justice. Throughout the Arkham series, Batman experiences moments of self-doubt and being on the brink of failure. Rocksteady unearthed different layers in Bruce Wayne and showed a more complex Batman. By creating these original titles, certain things remain unique for Rocksteady’s version of the Caped Crusader.
10 Expanded Rogue Gallery
Throughout Batman’s cinematic history, there’s hardly a time when Batman is up to his nose in villains. Usually, the standard list of baddies that includes the Joker, Penguin, Riddler, Catwoman, and Harly Quinn typically suffice for the evildoers department. While Rocksteady leaned heavily on the standard baddies, especially with Joker in Arkham Asylum, the developer went above and beyond in delivering new and interesting enemies.
In Arkham Asylum, even though the Joker is the ultimate bad guy, Batman faces off against Killer Croc and Zsasz. Arkham City introduces Hugo Strange, Calendar Man, Solomon Grundy, and Clayface. Arkham Knight brings the dangerous Azrael and, of course, the Arkham Knight. Other than the comics, no iteration of Batman has ever fought any of these villains, so finally seeing the Dark Knight get a little diversity in his rogue gallery is a sight for sore eyes.
9 Unnatural Strength
Throughout his career, Batman has always been a master of martial arts. He’s trained under Ra’s al Ghul, leader of the League of Assassins, so enemies should think twice before engaging in a brawl with the Dark Knight. But there’s one other thing that enemies should also consider with Rocksteady’s Batman: His unnatural arm strength.
Bruce lifts weights and exercises, and hits from the bat suit might be a bit harder with the armor. But there’s no way that Batman should be upper-cutting thugs multiple feet in the air or drop-kicking them twenty yards away. Batman doesn’t have any secret super-strength powers, so the only explanation is a powered-up suit. Imagine the suit having hydraulics in the arms and legs. That could definitely do some damage.
8 Go-Go Gadgets
Due to the lack of superpowers, Batman’s forced to rely on his own brains, brawn, and whatever he can fit in his utility belt. Standard gadgets include a grappling gun, smoke grenades, and of course, the famous Batarang. Usually, that’s all Batman needs to get the job done, but Rocksteady made sure its Batman would require a bit more.
In Arkham Asylum, Batman uses explosive gel to break down walls or to even disorient thugs. The explosive gel is utilized throughout the series, something that wasn’t used anywhere else. Batman also has a voice synthesizer, shock gloves, and a freeze blast device. It’s rare to see Batman with a wide assortment of gadgets at his disposal, and that’s something that seems to have been forgotten about the character.
7 Arkham Asylum
The title of the first game of the series and its setting, Arkham Asylum is fully operational in the Rocksteady universe. In other iterations, Arkham has always been shown as being abandoned, deserted, or run down. The entire first game takes place in the asylum after Joker locks it down.
Being able to walk the halls of the asylum and explore the many different areas of Arkham was an impactful experience that helped build the world. Watching Batman interact with the inmates and almost lose himself in Arkham was a crowning moment in his character development.
6 World’s Greatest Detective
Something that seems to get swept under the rug is Batman’s detective skills. Lauded as the world’s greatest detective, Batman investigates for clues and analyzes crime scenes far more than cracking skulls. Rocksteady developed an intricate system for Batman to study for clues to determine his next course of action.
Because he doesn’t have any powers, Batman must rely on his wits and outsmart most of his enemies. Integrating the detective system and highlighting the importance of it shed some much-needed light on another forgotten skill of the Dark Knight. It does get touched on in Telltale’s Batman game, but…let’s not talk about that.
5 Two Bat Caves
Every superhero needs a secret hideout. But only one superhero needs two of them. After the first bat-cave beneath Wayne manor was built, Batman must have had an epiphany or a vision of Joker taking over Arkham Asylum because for some reason he built a second bat-cave underneath the asylum.
This second hideout contained the same luxuries as the original, decked out with a supercomputer and lab materials for conducting experiments. Unfortunately, the cave gets a bit destroyed by Poison Ivy’s plants, but at least Bruce can say that he was right in having it built in the first place.
4 The Fate of Jason Todd
If there’s one glaring glossed-over area in the Arkham series, it’s Batman’s relationship with his disciples. Robin shows up in Arkham City to offer Bruce assistance, but naturally, he refuses. Robin does eventually come to Bruce’s aid in the Arkham City DLC, so score one for loved ones. The finale of the trilogy, Arkham Knight, sees the rise of a new villain by the same name. Teamed up with Scarecrow, the Arkham Knight is hellbent not on taking over Gotham but destroying Batman.
The huge twist is that the Arkham Knight is once-thought-dead Jason Todd. Comic book enthusiasts know Jason Todd once donned the name Robin until the Joker seemingly killed him. Instead, the Joker merely kidnapped Jason and tortured him. Thinking that Batman would never come for him, Jason began to hate his mentor and became the Arkham Knight. The Arkham Knight is a new persona for Jason, who typically becomes the Red Hood. Jason will eventually become the Red Hood in the Rocksteady universe, but after his time as the Arkham Knight.
3 Blood Infection
In Arkham City, the Joker knocks Batman unconscious and infects him with his poisonous blood. As a result of Joker’s failed TITAN injection in Arkham Asylum, he’s become deathly ill and his body is starting to decompose. Joker injects Batman to force him to find a cure to save the both of them.
Joker never attempted anything close to what he did in the Rocksteady universe, so the idea of Batman being poisoned by tainted blood probably wouldn’t happen. However, the Dark Knight has dropped his defenses when it came to Poison Ivy, so poisoning the Bat isn’t completely impossible.
2 Death Of A Clown
Even though comic books are works of fantasy and imagination, it’s rare and chilling to witness death. Shockingly, Rocksteady decided to kill off Batman’s archnemesis — the Joker. Batman was unable to get a cure for Joker’s tainted blood from the TITAN injection.
Arkham City ends with the Joker collapsing in a coughing heap, the life being drained out of him until he’s left on the ground with an icy smile on his face. For as long as Batman and the Joker have battled each other, seeing the Clown Prince of Crime meet his doom didn’t feel right.
1 I Am Batman
If there’s one superhero that values their secret identity above all else it’s Batman. Through everything he does, Batman makes sure that nobody finds out that he’s Bruce Wayne. Unfortunately, the unimaginable happens. Captured by Scarecrow, Commissioner Jim Gordon is forced to remove Batman’s mask, revealing to all of Gotham that he’s actually Bruce Wayne.
Usually, in those moments, something happens at the last second to save the hero. Not this time. Rocksteady took the ultimate step in defining their Batman by having his worst nightmare come true. Unmasking Batman leads to Bruce initiating the Knightfall protocol. It’s because of this reason and so much more as to why Rocksteady’s version of Batman separates himself from all the rest.
NEXT: 10 Annoying Things About The Batman Arkham Games
- Batman: Arkham Knight
Upon graduating from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, Avery Feyrer experienced working as a Web Content Editor at the local sports radio station in Arizona. After realizing his true passions were in games, Avery began writing game reviews for his personal website (coffeescorner.com) before becoming a regular contributor to MP1st. Avery specializes in creating all kinds of lists, which prompted him to apply as a List Article Writer for The Gamer. You can find Avery on Twitter @CoffeeBlack_910.
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