Batman: Arkham Knight, one of 2014's few truly next-gen titles, gets a new trailer from Rocksteady, showcasing the Batmobile and some short glimpses of in-game action.
“Gotham, this is your only warning,” a disembodied voice proclaims over the new gameplay trailer for Batman: Arkham Knight. “Abandon this city or I will unleash your greatest fears. Tonight Gotham falls, a city of fear rises. There is no saviour. No more hope. No more Batman.”
It’s safe to assume the voice belongs to Scarecrow, who featured in Arkham Asylum as one of the game’s most memorable villains. Here Scarecrow compels Gotham’s citizens to leave the city limits, or face terrifying consequences. In Arkham Knight, Batman is forced to take on the combined efforts of the Rogues Gallery one last time in an effort to save Gotham.
From the trailer’s official video description:
Scarecrow returns to Gotham City to unite the Rogues Gallery in a master plan to destroy the Batman once and for all.
When the citizens of Gotham are forced to flee, the remaining criminal gangs converge to take control of the city. Undermanned and overpowered, Batman aims to even the odds by bringing his legendary Batmobile to the fight. This showdown between criminal masterminds and the Dark Knight will decide the future of the city that Batman is sworn to protect.
As is the unfortunate case with gameplay trailers these days, the majority of the trailer above is actually made up of cutscenes, which Rocksteady can just barely get away with calling ‘gameplay’ because Arkham Knight‘s cutscenes are all done in-engine. What this means is that none of the footage in the video is pre-rendered; the actual gameplay should look for the most part as good as the cutscenes. What you might not realize is how much of the trailer actually is real gameplay. After about the halfway mark when the Batmobile has its dramatic reveal, a lot of the quick shots in the subsequent montage appear to be real in-game action, including perhaps most importantly, a quick look at the Batmobile driving up the wall onto the ceiling of a tunnel. We also get to see a couple quick frames of Batman beating thugs to a pulp, which seems to be true gameplay as well. The truth of the matter is that Arkham Knight is pretty enough that from the right angle, even real game footage looks like a cinematic to eyes that have grown accustomed to the ancient tech of PS3 and Xbox 360.
In addition to Scarecrow, the trailer offers a look at some other villains including the Penguin, Two-Face and the new eponymous Arkham Knight, whose identity has yet to be revealed by Rocksteady (though we took a few guesses as to who the Arkham Knight might be). We also briefly get to see some of Batman’s allies, namely Jim and Barbara Gordon, the latter of which we know will play a much larger role as Oracle this time around.
But of course the star of the show is still the Batmobile, which serves as the biggest departure for Rocksteady from Batman: Arkham City. The developer has made Batman’s iconic vehicle the center of their marketing push, and while the car is impressive (And the chicks dig it) we haven’t seen much of anything else. Batman: Arkham Origins, which was a side-game of sorts made by WB Montreal, failed to do anything particularly interesting with the game’s existing mechanics, though its middling success shows that recreating nearly the exact same formula as Arkham City toes the line of acceptable for consumers. Rocksteady is more reliable than WB Montreal with the franchise, for sure, but hopefully there’s more to Batman’s arsenal in Arkham Knight than a big, sexy car. We still want to punch thugs and hide in the shadows from time to time.
We’ve put together a comprehensive breakdown of Batman: Arkham Knight already, but there’s still a lot of information Rocksteady have yet to unveil. You can expect to see much more of The Dark Knight at E3 2014 in June.
Batman: Arkham Knight launches October 14, 2014 for PS4, Xbox One and PC.
Images: DC Entertainment/Rocksteady