After two delays, an incredibly lengthy development period and an Arkham spin-off to fill the gap between, Rocksteady’s superhero spectacular is finally with us. Having played it for around 3-4 yesterday, spectacular certainly is the right word to use – it’s packed full of surprises and a clear contender for being one of the best looking games of all-time.
The only downside (so far) is that the Batmobile – able to turn into a tank at a push of a button – is a tricky beast to control. When in combat mode it’s possible to move left and right to avoid fire, causing the Batmobile to slide all over the place completely without grace.
The Batmobile does give Bats some new moves though. Launching a surprise attack by shooting out the ejector seat and through a glass window is the epitome of cool.
Enough first impressions for now – here are verdicts of those who have played through the whole thing:
5/5 – Attack of the Fan Boy: “Rocksteady Studios leaves Batman behind at the top of their game in terms of visual presentation, gameplay, and storytelling. While Arkham Knight’s innovations are few, they are impactful and smart, and all work towards the common goal of giving the player the ultimate power fantasy of being the Batman”
10/10 – Aus Gamers: “Its game-world is wholly realised and gorgeous to look at, but above all else, it tells such an incredible story in so many new and unique ways, it’s impossible to ignore. Batman: Arkham Knight is a Batman experience no self-respecting fan should miss, and if Batman’s not your thing, then make it your thing. You won’t regret it. Trust me”
10/10 – VideoGamer: “It’s epic; it’s grand; it’s addictive; it’s ridiculously good-looking and it’s going to be remembered for a long time to come. A masterpiece”
10/10 – God is Geek: “It’s exciting, beautiful, haunting, dramatic, and compelling. It leaves you breathless, begging for more. This is the best game I’ve played this year so far, and it gets the mind racing as to what Rocksteady can do next”
10/10 – Polygon: “Rocksteady has said this is its last Batman game, and I’m praying to the New Gods that they’re on the level. After Arkham Knight, trying to find more meat on the Batman bone would define futility. After Arkham Knight, Batman has been perfected — and the end result is the best game of this console generation”
9.5 – GameInformer: “I walked away from Arkham Knight shocked, satisfied, and in dire need of someone to discuss the story with. Rocksteady built a special experience that dazzles with its cleverness, intelligence, and ability to shift from kick-ass Batman moments to emotional gut punches to scenes stripped straight from some of Batman’s greatest comic book stories. Lock yourself away, avoid social media and friends, and finish this game. You won’t want this one spoiled for you”
9.2 – IGN: “If this is in fact the last Rocksteady-developed Batman game, the series will end on a high note. Arkham Knight is the biggest Batman game yet, not just in map size, but in the wide range of different types of gameplay, and its collection of characters”
9/10 – gamesTM: “Batman struggles during the Arkham Knight – he’s finally held accountable for his ‘above the law’ attitude – and Rocksteady has masterfully and knowingly deconstructed the man behind the mask with such aplomb, even Alan Moore might give a begrudging nod of approval. This is the best superhero fantasy we’ve ever enacted, and we’re so sad it’s over”
4.5/5 – The Escapist: “The flawless core gameplay, the beautifully designed environments, and the sheer fun of throwing yourself at the challenges of the game are fun for hours on end. This is a game that delivers more than your money’s worth, and gives up precisely what fans of the series wanted: More Batman, bigger and better than before”
4/5 – US Gamer: “Rocksteady brings the story of its version of Batman to a satisfying conclusion. There’s some moments of tedium to be found, but if you want to be the Batman, this is one of the best experiences available”
4/5 – GamesRadar: “An ambitious and successful end to Rocksteady’s trilogy, with a standard-setting open world you must experience. A superior main story and less Batmobile combat would’ve made a huge difference”
7/10 – GameSpot: “Gotham is a dazzling playground where neon lights pierce through the rain and mist; all it takes is a single glimpse to tell you that this is a city in need. Moreover, many individual elements are so carefully constructed, and presented with such flair, that appreciation is the only reasonable reaction. Yet most of these elements–excellent acting, wonderful animations, moody soundtrack–are ones that Batman: Arkham City also excelled in, making Arkham Knight’s missteps all the more noticeable”