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Batman: Arkham City Gameplay Trailer Analysis

What will the premise for Arkham City be? We give our educated guess in this analysis!

Ah, springtime! The time of the year when things begin to heat up, flowers start blooming, and when comics, video games and movies tend to get really interesting. Last week during the Game Developers Conference here in San Francisco, many members of the press got their first sneak peek at the demo for Batman: Arkham City. Those that were lucky enough to get into the show and take a closer look at the game play footage were not only impressed, they were mystified! In fact, the footage prompted Giantbomb to ask a couple of interesting questions about the upcoming game

Based on the demonstration footage that GB caught at GDC, something called "Protocol 10" is going to make a big impact in the upcoming video game. According to the article, after successfully saving Catwoman, Batman interrogates her for information regarding Doctor Hugo Strange's "Protocal 10," which was presented as backwards audio during the video. We can only guess that Protocol 10 is going to be a big part of the game- and unfortunately, it isn't something that is brought up or mentioned during the most recent gameplay footage released by Rocksteady. However, there may be some interesting clues as to Hugo Strange's possible motives. Over the course of the last several months we have seen a plethora of images leaked online that hint at what we can expect going into Batman: Arkham City; and even though a picture is sometimes worth a thousand words, it's often when everything comes together that we can really begin to see the bigger picture. We decided to take that minute and a half worth of footage, and do some detective work ourselves.  

 == TEASER ==

Batman: Arkham City picks up one year where Batman: Arkham Asylum left off. Just as it was hinted in the first game, and in many of the interviews and images that we have seen, something has completely changed Gotham City, and enabled everyone that had been locked up in Arkham Asylum, to roam free- seemingly under the control of the Arkham Asylum's Warden, Doctor Hugo Strange.   

The gameplay footage opens with a close up of Doctor Strange who looks to be in Arkham Asylum, with the faint sound of a respirator in the background. Based on the image, Strange could very well be operating on someone, something he is known to have done in comics to many patients- including pre-crisis Bruce Wayne

The footage opens with Strange and pans quickly to the image of Batman looking out at Gotham's rooftops. Strange is heard saying, "Have you ever considered that this is all your fault? That your presence creates these animals?" This very concept is what keeps Batman going in the comics, so it's no shocker that the creative team would integrate that into the new game. The idea that Batman's existence is what prompts the rise of psychotic super villains isn't a new news. In fact, that very idea is what propelled Frank Miller's famous Batman tale, The Dark Knight Returns. Published in 1986, DKR takes place in the future where Batman is 55 years old and has come out of retirement. His return awakens the Joker who has been comatose for years. The Joker is a contrary force that is prompted an awakening by Batman's return, proving that without Batman, there would be no Joker. 

The image of Batman looming over Gotham transitions out and the focus moves to the Joker's Playground, further reinforcing this idea that perhaps if there were no Batman, there would be no chaos. 


The video pans to Gotham's court house and the fact that there are "Arkham City Inmates" roaming freely around the court house is indicative that they have the flexibility to roam the city with little restriction. 

Could it be that Black Mask will make an appearance in the upcoming game? 

If you caught some of the previously released images, you may have noticed that Two-Face will be making his debut in Batman: Arkham City. The footage depicts him holding Catwoman captive, debating whether or not to kill her. It is in this scene that Batman saves Selina's life and proceeds to interrogate her about "Protocol 10," (though it's not specified in this footage).     

The scene switches from the brief dialogue (and evident chemistry between the two characters), to full fledged action. In a previous interview, Rocksteady developer Sefton Hill stated that more than just the game's setting would have to change for the sequel. Hill inferred that giving Batman some new toys and gadgets would not be enough because he will be "fundamentally facing a new game world and [a] totally different range of enemies in this game [Batman: Arkham City]. The image above demonstrates a new move, where Batman enters the scene gliding downward, fist first, stunning a group of Arkham City inmates. Needless to say, he's got some pretty cool new moves. 

One of the cooler gameplay features in Batman: Arkham Asylum was the ability to glide with the assistance of a grappling hook. Here, Gliding is taken to a whole new level and will enable Batman to attach himself to moving object like Helicopters, for example. 

The ability to glide will be expanded, and will be utilized as a defense mechanism throughout gameplay as well, which is demonstrated in Batman's display of dodging oncoming ammunition mid flight. 


In addition to expanding his gliding capabilities, it seems that "detective mode" is back- but with some upgrades. Not only will Batman be able to scan his adversaries, but also surrounding objects. 

The big question is what will the premise for Batman: Arkham City be? As with it's predecessor; Batman: Arkham Asylum; Batman: Arkham City will not only take all of it's characters, but also many of it's concepts directly from the comics. Based on what we know, Arkham Asylum has been moved off the island and into a blocked off area of Gotham City where Hugo Strange has been appointed Warden. Just as in the comics, Hugo Strange knows Batman's true identity, which he very likely will use as leverage to analyze Batman, but since it might be hard to have him on Strange's operating table, he'll be forced to analyze Batman from a distance. I predict that Strange will quickly realize that the best way to analyze Batman, is to use Arkham City and all of it's inmates against him. As Warden, Strange has established a set of rules, or "protocols" which must be abided by all patients and prisoners of Arkham. If I had to guess, "Protocol 10" could refer to a hit placed on Batman. Perhaps in the upcoming game, Arkham City are the hunters, and Batman is the hunted. Think Gavin Lyall's 'The Most Dangerous Game.'  What do you think the premise of the Batman: Arkham City will be?  And just in case you haven't already checked out the gameplay trailer, here it is! 

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Edited by weapon154

I'm... pretty sure the Joker is just getting the side affects from the titan formula.

Posted by CasimirAngel

Looks awesome!

Posted by StarKiller809

That looks amazing! I played the first one again and I really want the second one.
Posted by shockwave632

I'm... pretty sure THAT LOOKS AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by Avenging-X-Bolt

for some reason im just not excited yet....
Posted by Grim

at the end, Batman said Joker lied, and there was nothing wrong with him. 
 it gott me thinking that its possible Joker faked an illness, and so someone (government or whoever) locked down Arkham and the surrounding areas. 
 doesnt really matter what my predictions are though. I'm just hoping we get to see that Penguin/Two-Face gang battle... and fight in it!

Posted by darth bul

Posted by clumsyninja

There's also a suppose cameo of Clark Kent on the trailer, you only might see his back. Also wasn't GBC where Jimmy Olsen work for awhile.

Posted by jamdown

i hope the graphics are going to be better in the actual game
Posted by haydenclaireheroes

can't wait for this game

Posted by jazzblade

cant wait!

Posted by InnerVenom123
Holy balls...
Posted by Deranged Midget

Perfect song choice, definite buy.

Edited by Jordanstine

You know what the BIGGEST PROBLEM for this game is going to be!!!!?
Whether to get it for the Xbox 360 or the PS3!

Posted by ApeKindaBaked

Purely amazing. Can't wait for this game. Mortal Kombat first though :)
Posted by GTG12

Looks amazing.
Posted by SnickerSnack

this is f-ing awesome @_@

Posted by Pokeysteve

I hope Catwoman doesn't have too big of a role in this. I really don't like her and she annoys me. Other then that though I can't wait for this. Need to get back to work on my time machine now. 

Posted by ExistenceBiker
 what is the titan formula
Posted by tobiasPUNK

Can't wait! The first one was so amazing, even the Riddler's puzzles were fun. I hope the Riddler actually makes an appearance in this one.

Posted by MysterioMaximus

I have to change my pants...

Posted by webling
Posted by Girth

Game of the year.

Posted by marriott1984

very cool indeed can't wait for to come out :)
Posted by VprVnmSRT10

I absolutely loved the first game. I played it 3 times start to finish. Cant wait for this game.  
This is probably the only comic based game I enjoyed. 

Edited by TrulyAlive

Not that I mean to second guess you, Sara, but Dr. Hugo Strange was not Warden of Arkham Asylum in the first game (and from what I understand there's no indication that he will be in this one.) The warden was Quincy Sharp. 
There's also a few things that caught my eye in this trailer that wasn't covered here that I posted a blog about over on GB
I would have posted here instead, but hadn't noticed there was a thread running.

Posted by TheSheepHerder

Hopefully this won't need a really demanding PC to run.
Other than that, this game is going to be awesome.

Posted by The_Warlord

What's the name of the song?

Posted by spartan92
short change hero by the heavy
Edited by Eyz

I'm glad Harvey and Selina look both great and as the in-game artworks in Arkham Asylum presented them...however, quite sad Harley Quinn is much trashier than she already was in the first game. Couldn't they use the original costume, as she did in those artworks/bio of the original game?
Wait..nope! Wouldn't sell enough the game to those horny kids/nerds/gamers... now she looks generic and slutty...

Posted by LikeableZombie

Looks so good

Posted by Yummylee

Great to hear that even Two Face has also had his Animated Series VA counterpart once again filling the role.

Posted by NXH
@Jordanstine said:
" You know what the BIGGEST PROBLEM for this game is going to be!!!!?  Whether to get it for the Xbox 360 or the PS3!  Ahhhh!!! "
Posted by Out_of_Space

I'm sure that it's gonna be amazing.

Posted by Fantasgasmic

I want it to be Black Mask (with the Sionis Industries building from the other trailer) but I wouldn't be surprised if it was just a guy in a balaclava. Also, is it just me or does that last Joker silhouette look like he has devil horns? I know its not a byproduct of the Titan formula from Arkham Asylum, its just weird scars/lighting in the video, but at first glance it confused me.

Posted by BoOMbOoMpOw

AAAAAAAHHHH this is so freaking awesomeee !!!!!!

Posted by KRYPTON

Can't wait for later this year

Posted by NightFang
@Deranged Midget said:
"Perfect song choice."
Posted by SpartanAmbrose
@tobiasPUNK said:
" Can't wait! The first one was so amazing, even the Riddler's puzzles were fun. I hope the Riddler actually makes an appearance in this one. "

Your wish has been granted!
Posted by Mumbles


Posted by Mumbles
the heavy- short change hero
Posted by cmaprice

The "Black Mask" picture in question looks like Jim Gordon with a sack over his head to me.

Posted by ARMIV

Posted by yeopop

For some reason I can't explain this images didn't excited me.
Posted by Lvenger

Nice analysis. I can hardly wait for this game to come out now although I wish it was in August as it was originally suggested rather than in October. Now I'm going to have to buy a couple of other cheap games to supplement myself till Arkham City comes out :( Ah well.

Posted by sgoodwi

YEAH!....cant wait until october

Posted by PrincessSolaria


Posted by Jimbo

Great song choice and a great trailer.  Kinda reminds me of that first Assassin's Creed ad.  
Actually, the first game felt like it was quite strongly influenced by AC to me and this seems to be moving even further in that direction.  No complaints from me about that.

Posted by KZR

I'm speechless...

Posted by Octagon Freak

Looks pretty sweet!

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