Arkham City Fully Explorable From Beginning

April 12, 2011 Written by Tyler Minarik

It sure would be hard to believe Batman is the super hero we all know and love if his movement was restricted to certain areas due to a minor obstacle or impediment. That’s why Rocksteady Studios is letting him explore the entirety of Arkham City right from the opening of the game.

Batman: Arkham City is the upcoming sequel to the 2009 smash hit Batman: Arkham Asylum, and anyone who has played the incredible original should be more than excited to get their hands on more. Rocksteady Studios delivered what is perhaps one of the greatest games based on a comic book hero ever, but that doesn’t mean they’re done pushing the bar. After learning from the results of Batman: Arkham Asylum, they’ve decided to make various improvements, and a primary one is the transition to a more open world style. They commented recently on this in an interview with CVG, where Dax Ginn, Rocksteady’s Marketing Games Manager, was asked about difficulties with directing players on where to go in a non linear setting:

Well the open world aspect, everywhere that’s open to the sky is available to the player from the off. So they can go anywhere they want and that was the emotional feeling that we wanted to convey; you’re Batman, you can do what you want. That’s the empowering thing that Arkham Asylum didn’t really deliver because it was such a linear, tight, intense story.

It definitely makes a lot more sense for the dark knight to be able to follow his own path as he sees fit. With a whole city at his feet (or wings, if you prefer), and all the gadgets, vehicles, and tools a millionaire superhero could ever need, what could possibly impede him from heading down town and busting up some gang members? Not much, and should you decide to do so, expect a load-free commute, since the entire city will be one piece, rather than split into sections like Arkham Asylum. When asked about this, Dax replied:

It’s all open, all the time. Our technical director was like, “What? You want an open-world that’s open all the time that’s five times bigger than anything we’ve done before? Are you crazy?”

And then subsequently asked about load times:

Not in the exteriors, you saw the loading from going inside the courthouse from the outside but no it streams seamlessly throughout and that has been a massive, massive challenge.

Holy split seconds Batman, we’ll be there in no time! Considering the scope of Arkham Asylum, and that Arkham City is supposed to be five times the size, this seems quite impressive. By combining these tidbits with the fact that Batman will start this round with all the gadgets acquired from the previous game, we can expect the opening to be just as exhilarating as the end game from Arkham Asylum. If Rocksteady manages to build upon that throughout the entirety of Arkham City, we may have a stellar game of the year candidate on our hands. They still have about a half a year to put the finishing touches on everything, with the game currently scheduled for release in late October. We simply can’t wait to swoop out of the darkness once more and string thugs up by their boots in Batman: Arkham City, but until then stay tuned to PlayStation LifeStyle for more information as it arrives.