Batman Arkham Origins is my favourite dark knight game

5 min read

Arkham Origins (6)

It’s been two years since Batman: Arkham Origins was released. Two years since fans were subjected to a buggy mess of a prequel that could barely manage a fast-travel system before crashing into a sea of glitches and flames. Man, what a difference time makes.

And that’s because since then, Arkham Origins has actually become…pretty damned good. In fact, it may be my favourite game in the series. And as much as I enjoy ribbing PC gamers, I have to admit that it is PC gaming which redeemed Batman Arkham Origins for me.

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Now before Geoff eggs you on to form a moderately upset mob, hear me out. There’s a big difference between favourite and the best. I still think Batman: Arkham Knight is the best Batman game. But dammit, Arkham Origins has managed to win me back since 2013, now that it works the way it was supposed to.

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Because back in 2013, the game was pretty much broken for me. It crashed consistently. The frame-rate was slower than Sandy on a treadmill and stuttered more than King George VI at a public event. But listen, none of that matters now.

The game has been properly fixed, and is no longer more jarring than something which jars terribly. I’ve run out of analogies at this point.

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And that has made a world of a difference. Who would have thought that a video game running smoothly would be better received? Mind you, this is thanks to me playing it on PC, with visuals properly ramped up.

But I love it. I adore it. With a graphical engine which doesn’t resemble a clown car crash, I can properly enjoy it now. There’s a fantastic story within Arkham Origins, a prequel that does the caped crusader better justice than 2005’s Batman Begins.

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It’s the Die Hard of Batman games, a Christmas story where the dark knight has to face down a gauntlet of assassins who are after the $50 million on his head, with a magnificent twist hidden in the second act. It’s also a story that leads down to one of the most enjoyable boss fights ever committed to a video game:

That fight is just beautifully paced. It’s a titanic struggle on WWE levels, with a give and go attitude that remains white-knuckle tense all the way through. It is one of the very best fights ever, and a sublime example of focusing on only one aspect of the Batman, and maximising the potential of that gameplay mechanic.

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Like I said, Arkham Knight is the best Batman simulator out there. It has plenty going for it, and I’ll probably have to make a strong case later this year about why it’s the best racing game of the year. But Arkham Origins has redeemed itself.

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Two years on, and it has managed to become the kind of game that I was looking forward to at launch. It’s grim, brutal and I think Roger Craig Smith is the best successor to Kevin Conroy’s Batman.

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And it’s a game which you can pick up for mere pennies these days, whether it be a Steam sale or from dodgy third-party website based in a Russian gulag. Maybe it’s time to give Origins a second chance, because I’m no longer even calling it Arkham Oranges anymore.

Last Updated: October 6, 2015

Darryn Bonthuys

Something wrong gentlemen? You come here prepared to read the words of a madman, and instead found a lunatic obsessed with comics, Batman and Raul Julia’s M Bison performance in the 1994 Street Fighter movie? Fine! Keep your bio! In fact, now might be a good time to pray to it!

  • Pariah

    Slow news day?

    • na




      • Pariah

        • Hammersteyn

          Look how happy that orphan is.

  • Hammersteyn

    “fans were subjected to a buggy mess of a prequel that could barely manage a fast-travel system before crashing into a sea of glitches and flames”…………..oh right. PC gaming….

    • Jonah Cash

      The Playstation version was also a big bug fest! If there were more than 10 people on the screen it started to slow down more than any Max Payne game has ever slowed down even in bullet time…

      • Hammersteyn

        Did not know that. Maybe the master race makes a bigger noise when it comes to broken games?

  • Mistake Not…

    Blasphemy! No, but the concept was awesome, and that Deathstroke fight was amazing. I did that super difficult playthrough where it’s one-death-game-over, but the game bugged out at the stupidest moment and I dieded. So screw this game.

  • Alien Emperor Trevor

    I had to replay that boss fight quite a few times before getting it right. I enjoyed all 3 Batman games on PC though, can’t really pick a clear favourite because they’re all the same really.

    • Once you’ve got the rhythm down, it’s a beautiful boss fight.

      • Pariah

        That’s the most creative way to describe masturbating I’ve ever heard. But good on you #ForeverSP blokes for sticking together.

        • Hammersteyn

          LOL! wait……..sticking?

          • Pariah

            It’s so nice when people get the double entendres we leave behind.

        • Mistake Not…

          With me it’s like a Dark Souls boss fight. It always ends with crying.

    • Mistake Not…

      >>Searches for counter argument.

      >>None found.

  • AfricanTime

    not yet played, playing the Arkham city, bought all three for 20 dollars last month from PS store, was a Batman sale or something. hopefully it will be different from City, it is a good game, but missions are a bit repetitive

  • David Weatherhead

    I just picked this up and playing it now. I was gonna skip straight to Arkham Knight, but because of it’s removal from Steam I decided to leave it till next year and play Origins instead… and I’m not disappointed, really enjoying it so far.

  • Grand Admiral Chief

    You need to treat your p#$$& better D

  • Jonah Cash

    I played it about 3 months after it came out and it had two patches to download by then if memory is correct. The game was just pure awesomeness! Will get the new one next year when they release the full game 🙂

  • dsyfnctinl

    AMEN!! Give this man a f*&cking Bells!!!!

  • R1ker

    Damn – I had to fight Deathstroke 3 times. First time I defeated him by constantly garpling and punching him. Some of the cut scenes did not render and in the end I stood in a room where Deathstroke was knocked out and no doors open for me to leave. Reload. Did the fight again and got stuck in a wall. Reload. 3rd time lucky and I could finally pass the level. Oh yes – and that was on PC. That fight prevented me from pre-ordering Arkham Knight. So thank you Oranges 🙂

  • E3

    Darn right, man, – I think Origins had it all – boss battles, story, good combat on certain maps. Bugs aside, it’s my favorite one!

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