I feel a little conflicted about the just-announced Batman: Arkham Origins. On the one hand, it's a new Batman game, which - as a huge fan of the Dark Knight - I'm ecstatic about. But on the other, Rocksteady has nothing to do with it.
Arkham Origins, a prequel to the last two games, is being developed by the unproven Warner Montreal. The studio's last project was Batman Arkham City: Armored Edition for the Wii U, a frankly shoddy port of Rocksteady's Xbox 360, PS3 and PC title.
On the other hand the talented Eric Holmes, previously lead designer of The Incredible Hulk: Ultimate Destruction and Prototype, both decent superhero games, will serve as creative director on Origins.
Basically, I'm as worried as I am excited. What follows is my wishlist for Arkham Origins, comprised of ideas collected over the past year. Have other ideas? Share them in the comments section below.
In Arkham City Origins, Batman will meet a number of key characters that play an important part of his future as a crime-fighting crusader. One guess is that Bats will brush shoulders with the likes of Superman, Green Lantern, Aquaman and Wonder Woman.
These are heroes that will go on to form the Justice League, though it's not clear yet whether that will happen in this game, as previously rumored. We're not sure what role they'll have to play in the story yet at all, or if they'll impact gameplay in any way, but that won't stop us from coming up with ideas...
With any luck Warner Montreal will apply the old 'if it ain't broke, don't try to fix it' adage to much of Origins. Arkham City's combat was the perfect balance of simplicity, depth and badassness (Badassery? Badassitude?), but the inclusion of more superheroes could offer an interesting new wrinkle to combat.
We're thinking something along the lines of 'assist' moves, where normal counters can be substituted with a helping hand from fellow heroes. Obviously, we don't want the likes of Superman, Green Lantern and Wonder Woman having all the fun, so their actions should be more defensive.
For example, imagine fighting alongside Superman and then spotting a enemy getting ready to use firearms across the room. Simply tap the assist button and Supes could use a heat vision blast to knock it out of his hand.
Going up against a large mob of thugs? Have The Flash use his super speed to run dizzying rings around them, leaving the goons completely open to your attacks. Want to pick out a certain enemy and separate him from the pack? Get Martian Manhunter to grab him using his elongating limbs and chuck him across the room.
See what we're thinking?