There's been rumblings over the changes being made to Tim Drake for a couple months now. The New 52 has been about change and updating characters. Many have remained the same and only experienced minor tweaks. Since TEEN TITANS #1, there hasn't been too many changes but now we're seeing what exactly has changed.
In many ways, Tim Drake is still the same character. He's still the same former sidekick of Batman. How he got to where he is today is what has changed.
There will be some spoilers for TEEN TITANS #0. Make sure you read that issue to get the full details of what has changed and to find out the complete story of Tim's journey.== TEASER ==
Olympic Level Gymnast
Tim excelled at everything he did. He was on his way to becoming an Olympic gymnast. He had a lot of encouragement and support from his parents. Tim's goal was to be the best at everything. This also plays a part in Tim wanting to become Batman's partner. For every accomplishment he reached, he was constantly setting more goals for himself. Both Batman and his dad were aware that Tim was meant for bigger things.
Batman Was Aware of Who Tim Was
In the pre-New 52, Tim Drake figured out who Batman and Robin were. He made his deductions and when he felt Batman needed a Robin after Jason died, he made his way to Batman and revealed what he knew. The way it's set now is rather than Tim stumble across the deduction of who Batman is, he set out to try to find out. Tim's determination and search for answers put him on Batman's radar. This makes sense in Batman should be aware if anyone was digging into his life, trying to put the pieces together.
We previously mentioned that Tim's parents are alive and in the witness protection program. It is possible that within the time they entered the program and today, they could have been killed. It's more likely that they are still alive and hiding due to Tim's messing around, trying to draw out Batman. His parents were alive when he originally became Robin but it's looking more like there's a possibility they will return at some point since we're seeing this play out in the zero issue.
Batman Brings Tim In
Originally Tim showed up on Bruce's doorstep after he figured out who Batman was. That isn't the case anymore. When Tim's parents' lives were in danger, they asked Batman to look after Tim. They knew he needed and deserved more than a life of "anonymity in the middle of nowhere under an assumed name." It isn't exactly clear if they asked Batman or Bruce Wayne but appears as if they asked Batman. Assuming they would still try to keep up on Tim's life after they relocate, they could easily figure out that Tim has a connection now to Bruce Wayne, which means they also know who Batman is.
The Name Change
We've heard that Tim was never actually called Robin. In the New 52, he went immediately to calling himself RED Robin. When he first arrived at the Batcave, he made it clear that he wouldn't be wearing the same design in costume "out of respect for Jason." He also came to the decision to call himself "Red Robin" instead of Robin.
The main thing that wasn't quite so obvious was the narration from Batman about Tim's name on the very last page. That definitely changes things and you'll have to read the issue for yourself to see what that's all about.