Batman Games Ranked

Image Source: IGN

I have forever been a follower of the caped crusader. From TV and film, to comics, to video games if the Batman donned the cover there was a pretty good chance, I would buy whatever it was. Over the years we have been graced with some amazing Batman games on a variety of consoles. Going as far back as 1986’s Batman released on the Amstrad, MSX, and Spectrum. But what are the 5 best Batman games? In this list I cover my personal top 5, with the only requirement for consideration being that Batman is the titular hero. So unfortunately, Lego DC Super Villains or Injustice will not be in consideration for this list.

5- Lego Batman

Image Source: CD Keys

Back on the PS2 Lego reigned supreme as they found a massive spike in popularity and demand following the success of the Lego Star Wars games. TT’s next project to legofy was DC’s own guardian of Gotham- Batman. The first Lego Batman game featured unique mechanics compared to the Lego Star Wars series, with Batman and Robin being able to switch out into different costumes. These outfit changes provided the player with certain abilities which would need to utilize to solve puzzles and progress through levels. The roster consisted of 46 characters including fan favorites such as: Joker, Catwoman, and Bane along side Batman and Robin.

This debut installment in the game series would be the only one to provide a full villain campaign that mirrored the main story. The idea was eventually brought back and expanded upon for the fourth game in the series Lego DC Super Villains released in 2019. I actually had the pleasure to play Lego DC Super Villains demo (which consisted of the first level) at 2018’s Eurogamer. One can also see TT saw the unlimited potential of branching out into other Ips, and the potential of the Lego game genre. With other franchises following in the footsteps of Star Wars and Batman, getting their own Lego game(s). Franchises include Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, Marvel, Pirates of the Caribbean, Indiana Jones, Lego Movie, and The Incredibles.  

4- Telltale’s Batman

Image Source: Nintendo

Offering a more cinematic gaming experience Telltale’s Batman released in 201? It was successful enough both commercially and critically to spawn a sequel titled Into the Shadows in . The story followed Batman as he struggled with conflicts arising in both Batman’s and Bruce Wayne’s lives. With the two ultimately being more connected than it originally seemed. The series offers good takes on various DC characters such as  Harvey Dent (Two-Face), and Oliver Cobblepot (Penguin).

The story also takes your decisions into consideration when calculating how Gotham see Batman, a symbol for justice or just some violent vigilante. Your decisions decide! The Batman IP is also one of the few franchises they can still realistically look at adding to again. As Telltale are already in work with WB in their development to the much-awaited Wolf Among Us 2. Which is a prequel adaptation of the Fables comic series.

3- Arkham Origins

Image Source: Games Spot

WB Montreal’s spin off of the Arkham Franchise, Arkham Origins is sometimes seen as the black sheep of the series. With some fans being in uproar that they developers still couldn’t make a story without the Joker. All trailers and marketing seemed to show Black Mask as the main antagonist yet pretty early on you have to investigate and solve Black Mask’s murder. The Joker of course is revealed yet again to be the main villain. Merely been disguised as the recently deceased Black Mask. With Origins being a prequel, it is set before any of the Arkham series and as such had the most potential to do a story without the Joker.

However, the whole bounty on Batman storyline is incredibly enthralling. You will see numerous of Batman’s heaviest hitters come chasing after you, instead of you chasing them! This subversion of the superhero genre is really refreshing and can keep your entertained in a Joker infested story. As when Arkham Knight came out the Joker was still ever present meaning the clown prince of crime has been in every single Arkham game as the main focus or one of them. With this disappointment being said Origins does hold high in other regards. The boss battles are some of the best in the whole series, with Shiva and Deathstroke being my fav boss fights of the whole series.

The fight with Deathstroke with leave you sweating, stood out of your seat, creeping closer to the TV as your fingers start to bleed from the hectic quick time events and blocking. But when you defeat him, you feel unstoppable!  Gameplay, especially combat, flows well, and has some of the best combat abilities in my opinion. Electrical gloves are amazing and remained notably absent from Arkham Knight. Yet in this game you are free to unleash all the electrical fury you wish!

2- Lego Batman 2: DC Superheroes

Image Source: Radio Times

Yes, I know another Lego game, but yet again one of the best! Lego Batman 2: DC Superheroes has a special place in all of Lego video games. It was the first Lego game to ever have a voice cast. With the developers deciding to opt for a more traditional form of dialogue rather than the iconic Lego series hums and grunts. It also widened the scope of the DC Lego games with the focus broadening to include more of the DC franchise. The gameplay was improved upon from the original by adding more character skills to allow for more puzzles. Other improvements saw the playable roster inevitably increased, from 46 to 50 (+10 through pre-order DLC). Unlike the originals roster this one included playable characters from outside Gotham, including Superman, Wonder Woman, and more.

This was the first Lego Batman game to also offer DLC. The two DLC packs released The Heroes Pack and The Villains Pack which both included five playable characters. With both DLC packs originally being offered as preorder bonuses. The Heroes included were: NIghtwing, Katana, Shazam, Zatanna, And Damian Wayne. The Villains Included were Bizarro, Captain Cold, Black Adam, Black Manta, and Gorilla Grodd.

1- Arkham City

Image Source: YouTube (Throneful)

Arkham City is and will always be one of the best video game sequels of all time. Arkham City is the video game equivalent of Empire Strikes Back. It takes everything good about the original and adds so much more depth. Expanding the game world to not only include Arkham Asylum but the whole city of Arkham. The games combat and stealth mechanics were improved upon by Rocksteady ensuring solid gameplay which one can still go back and play a decade later. Although I still hate that gliding section. The story features one of the best twists in a Batman story, and finally sees Clayface get some of the spotlight.

The story isn’t low on the villains either with Joker, Clayface, Ra’s Al Ghul and more featuring within the dynamic enthralling story. The games story is by far the pinnacle of Rocksteady’s various Batman narratives.

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