Happy Weekend TAY!
Another week has come and gone. I’m still cutting down on the caffeine and not enjoying that one bit. I’m now down to about one caffeinated beverage usually sometime after dinner. I am sleeping better, but it is like waking up refreshed in hell. Oh well, I quit smoking years ago so I imagine this will just be another long and painful journey.
On the gaming side of life, I managed to play quite a bit of Batman: Arkham Origins last week and I am totally digging it.
I know Origins seems to be the black sheep of the family, but I’m not sure I get why. I should say that with my aging-swiss-cheesed-brain I don’t remember Arkham City in clear detail, but maybe that lends to my impartiality here.
I enjoy the manageable map size. There is a great quick travel system but even just hoofing it by batgrapple everywhere doesn’t take all that long (and it’s so pleasant to do). I am very familiar with the map already and it is apparently twice the size and height of Arkham City. The landscape is filled with unique buildings and a great visual style. It is certainly a great take on Gotham.
I’m also very fond of the story. The writing and voice acting is surprisingly well done. Everyone so far feels like they really committed to their roles (except for Shiva). Roger Craig Smith does a great job as Batman and his voice fits the character very well. I was all set to hate Troy Baker doing the Joker, because it is very hard for me to think of the Joker without Mark Hamill at the helm, but Baker does a fantastic job. The story itself is strong and keeps me wanting more. I think the whole premise is very well laid out and makes excellent use of the list of villains.
And the villains are awesome to fight. I remember many of the boss fights from the previous Arkham games and I don’t remember them being quite as exciting and challenging as the boss fights in Origins.
I think much of this is due to the difficulty. I am playing on Hard and I think this game is quite a bit harder than Arkham City. The enemies are quicker and the combat feels a little faster. Combine that with a harder to pull off “free flow combat system” and (as Super Arppis pointed out) the large mobs of regular baddies that are completely relentless. This results in even regular thug battles that often kill me. If there is a group of twenty people with a couple of knives; I’ll definitely have my work cut out for me.
It is the difficulty and the threat of death that makes this game more exciting for me. I don’t remember feeling as threatened in Arkham City. As someone who loves adrenaline rushes and tension from my games, Arkham Origins sure hits a lot of the right notes for me.
Like I said though, I have a hazy recollection of Arkham City, so maybe if I revisit it I’ll find it a superior game. Still, there is nothing wrong with Origins for me and a lot that is very right.
We have a quiet time at home planned this weekend and the weather is supposed to be almost summer-like. It will be Batman: Arkham Origins for me and maybe Rock Band 4 for the family.
So, what are you playing this weekend?