Continuing the Trend

To say I was impressed by the first episode of Telltale’s Batman series would be a massive understatement, I felt like I was exploring new ground and interacting with interesting characters that I know and love, yet, I hardly knew them at all. Telltale’s take on The Dark Knight has proved to be incredibly unique, unique enough to keep Batman and it’s mythos fresh. Episode 2: Children of Arkham continues that trend and further improves on it, with incredible character development, difficult choices, riveting combat sequences, and a genuinely great story.

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Bruce and Selina have some really clever interactions throughout the episode.

The Same but Different

Episode 2 picks up right where Episode 1 left off, and in classic Telltale fashion, whatever choices you made in the previous Episode affects the next, and it’s incredibly apparent in the first 5 minutes. I started to feel legitimately bad about one of my choices in particular and i’m sure that’s a feeling i’ll eventually get used to. Gotham City is still in the middle of an election, and the counts are close. It’s coming to an end, but crime is still at an all time high in Gotham City, and it’s your job as Batman to deal with it in the best way possible, all while trying to find out what mastermind plan is in the works behind closed doors. My eyes were glued to the screen for the hour and a half it took to me to finish it (a lot shorter than episode 1) and I never once felt bored or that it was dragging on. The main star of Children of Arkham is the development of characters throughout the course of the episode. We get to know a lot about the Waynes and Bruce as a character himself, as Episode 2 further explores what caused him to become the Batman. There were legitimately challenging choices I made throughout the duration of the episode, and as I think of them now, i’m sure i’ll come to regret them later. Simple things like choosing whether or not to visit Mayor Hill as Bruce or Batman can change the entire dynamic and gameplay of the episode and I look forward to playing through again to make the choices I missed out on. Combat in Episode 2 is just as good as Episode 1, with an awesome bar fight with Catwoman about half way through. The lack of a crime scene section was a little disappointing, but I can understand why there isn’t one. One thing that Telltale have been consistent with is taking the same characters i’m familiar with, and turning them into something i’d never expect. I like to think I know Batman lore fairly well, and the fact that Telltale are still surprising me with their vision of The Dark Knight is to be applauded. Characters are being shown in lights they’ve never been shone in before, it’s fresh, new, and I absolutely love it. Episode 2 manages to look as good as Episode 1, with detailed character models and average environments. Performance is still an issue though, and it seems the game can never keep a consistent frame rate, but it’s definitely not unplayable.

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We learn more about Joe Frost, and why he did what he did.

Verdict: 9/10

Telltale’s Batman series has been incredible so far, and I really hope they keep it up and only get better from here. It’s shaping up to be my favourite Telltale series, with excellent choices, great combat scenes, interesting takes on characters, and meaningful character development. The usual flaws hold it back from being perfect, but hopefully Telltale can iron them out in Episode 3.

Positives

-Interesting takes on old characters

-Genuinely gripping story

-Incredible combat scenes

-Great character development

-Difficult choices throughout

Negatives

-Inconsistent frame rate

-Short episode

Thanks for reading guys, The Bioshock Collection is up next and it’ll be up tonight!

Harry.

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