Tag Archives: Arkham Origins

Batman: Arkham Origins – Cold, Cold Heart DLC Review

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The final (and only real Single Player story based) DLC for Batman: Arkham Origins has finally been released on Xbox Live. Cold, Cold Heart is available at £7.99 À la carte, or free as part of the Season Pass for the game.

Cold, Cold Heart is set on New Year’s Eve, just 6 days following the events of Batman: Arkham Origins which took place on Christmas Eve. It opens with us watching the Gotham City Humanitarian Award being given to Ferris Boyle, owner of Gothcorp. It is being hosted by Bruce Wayne at Wayne Manor who is being a lot more jovial than how he is portrayed in Batman: Arkham Origins considering the short time of the events of Origins ending, and a story that has Bruce Wayne a very surly, grumpy man only interested in “his work”.

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The DLC serves as the introduction of Mr Freeze to the Arkham universe. He attacks the event to kidnap Ferris Boyle using his cryogenic weapons to freeze security and guests. Once the cut scene is over its time to take over; and to begin with you will play as Bruce, fighting his way to get to the Batcave to “suit up”. Considering this is DLC released quite some time after the main game’s release, making the first ten minutes of the DLC nothing more then a tutorial for the combat and predator challenge elements felt a little pointless. No one playing this DLC would need such a basic tutorial and it felt like yet again, WB Montreal simply reusing another element that Rocksteady used in Arkham City, the opening sequence which sees you as Bruce Wayne fighting Penguin and his goons after being captured by Hugo Strange.

The DLC moves through Wayne Manor as you fight your way to get to the Batcave where you are quite clumsily told that the XE Batsuit, designed to deal with extreme frozen conditions, is not quite ready to be used just yet. So in a week since the events of Origins, Bruce and Alfred decide to build this Batsuit, which would be perfect to take on an enemy that uses Cryogenic weaponry but had no knowledge of the villain Mr Freeze before this DLC Story. Well Batman does like to be prepared, but it is just as lazy a way of introducing it into the story as much as Alfred telling you that for no reason whatsoever, the Glue grenades which worked just fine all through Batman: Arkham Origins, was suddenly unstable and all turned to dust so you wont be able to use them. Shame, they had been working a week ago.

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Gameplay wise the DLC has a lot to offer really. From the combat and predator challenges that being inside Wayne Manor and later on Gothcorp as you work to free Ferris Boyle from the clutches of Mr Freeze, to the open world nature once you get to explore the cornered off area of Gotham City, thanks to somehow Mr Freeze finding the time to send his goons to freeze the great Gotham bridge. The city allows you the freedom to explore the area as you would in the main game and it provides plenty of criminal activity to keep you busy.

Other than the main story-line mission, you also have plenty of optional side missions to complete. Some will rely on you having put on the XE suit which happens mid way, as 20 civilians have been frozen and require Batman to thaw them out using the XE suit’s thermal gloves which replace the Electrocutioner’s gloves you confiscated during Origins main story. Despite dealing with the character Anarchy in Origins story, his followers are still hell bent on continuing his work and Bats will encounter them spraying the Anarchy symbol around the city, or starting riots at arranged meeting points planning to set off the same bombs that Anarchy tried to in the main game. Both of which are optional for you as the player to complete during the main story mission and all serve to give you extra things to do, but also come across as filler to expand the gameplay.

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Using the XE suit was also fun at times. It has a great look, but like so much of Batman: Arkham Origins style of borrowing from Arkham City, the design is very similar to the Bat Armour used in the comic book story and animation ‘Dark Knight Returns’ to take on Superman in their big showdown fight. Thermal Batarangs are used to thaw controls that you will need to hack and the thermal gloves give Bats a more firey attack style much as the electricity gauntlets does. It does feel strange for Batman to be quite happy beating up thugs using fire punches, but then its no more improbable than Batman having been making this suit “just in case” he ran into a villain like Mr Freeze without knowing that Mr Freeze existed!

For me, this DLC is good but not great – much like the main game itself which scored just 60% on thisisxbox.com. Cold, Cold heart tells a good Origin story and introduction to the character of Mr Freeze, but it never really grabbed me with its gameplay which felt very “samey” to the main game which is my least favourite to have Arkham in its title. For the price of £7.99 you do get enough to do and a decent story to justify picking it up but only if you actually enjoyed Batman: Arkham Origins. If like me you had put the game down a long time ago and never felt the need to revisit it, then this DLC will give you some enjoyment as you play, but probably short-lived!

The cutscenes tell the main story well enough and its a nice way to round off the Origins of the Arkham series which this game was designed to do as Rocksteady worked on the final chapter of their own Arkham Trilogy (of which they do not include Origins or really even acknowledge its existence to be fair). For £7.99 its ok as DLC but it’s not a massive wow factor for me as an Arkham fan.

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Arkham: Origins – Cold, Cold Heart DLC First 30 Minutes

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2CQ3dN31Jis

Above is a 30 minute vid for the new DLC set to arrive on Arkham Origins from April 22nd. The DLC is centered around Mr. Freeze, and includes a whole new environment to explore. Cold, Cold Heart takes place a week after the events of Origins and Bruce Wayne is hosting an event at his Manor, which Mr. Freeze gate-crashes.

As we previously reported – Batman will get a new ‘Batsuit’ to allow him to take on the cryogenic weapons used by Mr Freeze and his goons, a suit which will also bring new combat options.

Cold, Cold Heart goes live on 22nd April for PC, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360

Arkham: Origins – Cold, Cold Heart DLC First Look

DC Entertainment have released an exclusive video where WB Montreal Developers discuss the new DLC For Arkham: Origins, Cold, Cold Heart. The DLC story introduces the Bat Villain Mr Freeze for the first time in the Arkham universe. Set one week after the events of the main game, this cold hearted deadly enemy picks his moment to rise up and targets an event being held by Bruce Wayne.

The DLC will see a new area of the city opened for gameplay. Batman will get a new ‘Batsuit’ to allow him to take on the cryogenic weapons used by Mr Freeze and his goons, a suit which will also bring new combat options.

Cold, Cold Heart is out on April 22nd for Xbox 360.

Arkham Origins – New SP DLC Teased for Mr Freeze

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WB Montreal, the developer studio created by WB Games just to produce Arkham Origins, has teased a big New Year Announcement and via their Facebook page have released a picture teasing what the next SP DLC content could be.

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The image suggests that WB Montreal have taken to ‘Batman: The Animated Series’ for this DLC story. ‘Heart Of Ice’ was the first episode to introduce Victor Fries aka Mr Freeze. Arkham series fans will remember Mr Freeze from Arkham City, who had a key role in the story. With the large amount of source material for Arkham Origins taken from Arkham City, it will be interesting to see how this story and possible origin story for Mr Freeze will play out as DLC. No release date has been given

Arkham Origins – New Hunter Mode arrives for MP today

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Arkham:Origins gets a new MP mode today with the release of  the all-new “Hunter, Hunted” multiplayer mode available for Xbox 360, which players can access by jumping into the Batman: Arkham Origins online multiplayer mode.

The “Hunter, Hunted” multiplayer mode brings the excitement of “Last Man Standing” to Batman: Arkham Origins.  The new 3v3v1 mode pits three Bane thugs, three Joker thugs, and Batman against each other to be the last team standing. With no respawns, the new “Hunter, Hunted” mode takes Batman: Arkham Origins multiplayer to a whole new level of intensity with heightened tension, risk, and rewards.

Whether you’ve been playing multiplayer since release or are just starting out now, this is a great time to have a go and unlock a few extra items!

Arkham Origins – First SP DLC Released Tomorrow £5.49

Set high in the Paektu-San Mountains of North Korea, the Initiation Add-On follows a young Bruce Wayne as he faces his ultimate test. Players will embark upon a series of challenge maps that test their martial arts training across exotic locales, including a bamboo forest and a mountain top monastery. Fans will face fresh enemies along with an epic final test to prove their worthiness to Bruce’s greatest and most pitiless teacher, Kirigi.

Stand alone price is £5.49 but it is included in the Season Pass. It will be the first time in the series that Challenge maps have had a story driven style, but they fit in with the premise of Bruce Wayne proving his worth following his training to become Batman.

Arkham Origins: Voice Actors Coming to GAME Stratford

 

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Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment today announced that UK fans of the highly anticipated Batman: Arkham Origins will soon have the chance to meet Roger Craig Smith and Troy Baker, the voices behind Batman and The Joker.

To mark the launch day of the next instalment in the Batman: Arkham series, games industry veterans Smith (Voice of Batman) and Baker (Voice of The Joker) will be meeting fans and signing copies of the title at GAME’s Stratford store between 09.00 and 11.00am on Friday October 25th.

 

 

Eurogamer, Expo Hands on – Batman Arkham Origins

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This article is the opinion of the author and in no way reflects a side-wide opinion. Each author attended Eurogamer separately – look out for other opinions in due course…

I was very fortunate enough to not only get hands on with a playable demo for Arkham Origins but also to attend the Eurogamer Expo developer session for the game as well as an opportunity to speak with the developers from WB Montreal as well.

(Dev Session begins at 07:03)

I am a huge Arkham fan, and have much love for the work Rocksteady have done to bring a true graphic novel level experience to a comic book adaptation. Both Asylum and Arkham City were amazing games both for story and especially for gameplay and it came as quite a shock when it was announced by Warner Brothers that it would be their brand new WB Montreal studio who would be taking over from Rocksteady to bring us Arkham Origins, a prequel story set before the first two Arkham Games.

From the video above you can see the developers themselves discussing what they have brought to the Arkham series, and it was the demo played on stage that fans attending Eurogamer Expo were able to play on the show floor. The demo stand was my first stop after the session itself, and after playing was lucky to get an opportunity to discuss the game with the developers for a good 20 minutes after playing.

It is has been made clear that Rocksteady gave their blessing to WB Montreal for Origins, and provided the technology used to make Arkham City to them so what you have with Origins is a game that has the same feel and look as City. Playing the demo felt perfectly natural from exploring the much large world of Gotham city to the free flow combat which has kept the speed and fluidity of City.

What felt new about what WB Montreal was the addition of random crime events which you as a player as either choose to stop or to ignore depending on your current objective. What is new about the combat in Origins, is that depending on how well you fight, the XP you collect will be based on your grading once the combat is complete. The more “Batman” you are the higher the grade and higher the XP you get. I like this new style, being rewarded for being more Batman is a nice touch and will help players learn to do more then just jump in and button mash till everyone is down.

Detective mode has also been improved upon by WB Montreal with Batman now having the ability to recreate a crime scene piece by piece to see how an event took place. One of the criticisms Arkham games have had in the past, is that the detective side for Batman in the games felt very automatic. Switch on detective mode, scan a clue and the game would connect the dots and show you where you needed to go next. This new style of having the player search for clues at a crime scene and then rewinding the crime itself from those clues in order to discover the cause or find new clues feels very true to the Batman from the comics, because Batman is a detective as much as he is an action hero. WB Montreal have given fans the chance to experience this aspect to Batman, who in Origins is only two years into his career as Gotham’s Dark Knight.

As well as the main villains who are out to collect the bounty put on Batman’s head by Black Mask, other lesser known characters will make an appearance to give Batman missions to do such as the Anarky. In the demo, you come across bombs set to explode by Anarky and using detective mode you track down Anarky and get introduced to a new enemy archetype in the Martial Artist. This enemy is able to counter more of Batman’s attacks more so then a standard thug. The AI is very good and matching your attacks so you need to change up from just doing normal standard attacks in order to take them down. Replacing the Titan enemy from previous Arkham games in the large heavy armoured enemies. You battle these like you would a Titan, stun 3 times then attack until Bats rips off their armour then repeat to put down. This is again a great way to build your combo metre and mixed in with a battle with other thugs will test your skills to try and get a high grade.

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The demo ends with Batman discovering Joker and coming face to face for the first time with his brutality and violence. Origins will have Batman being introduced to some of the biggest Villains in his universe for the first time, and if the story follows the example shown in the demo, each encounter is going to be something quite special, not just for fans of the Arkham series but for anyone who is a Batman fan.

Speaking with the developers, they acknowledged their concern for how loyal Rocksteady fans of Arkham would react to their series being taken over by a new Studio in WB Montreal. They told me that they wanted to stay true to what Rocksteady have built as a series and to what fans expect from an Arkham game but also wanted to give fans a new experience worthy of their time. With the addition of a full Multiplayer mode, WB Montreal wanted to give more for fans to do, but they have not forgotten what loyal fans loved about the challenge maps which also make a return for Origins.

I asked them if they planned on revealing any more villains before release and they confirmed that there will be no more revealed before launch so fans got a surprise when playing the game. They understood the need to build hype for the game especially with Origins being the first non Rocksteady game and the first not to feature the voice talents of Mark Hamill as The Joker and Kevin Conroy as Batman, but did not want to give so much away that fans have nothing left to look forward to discovering once they get to play the final game. One of the reasons they chose to set the game as a prequel was so they could make their own story without the worry of undoing the lore created by Rocksteady in their games. They respect what fans have come to know, and felt that in a prequel story going right back to when Batman was new to crime fighting they could tell a new story but keep the series legacy whole.

Overall, the concerns I had for Origins have gone. Whilst I am still not sure about the MP addition, the fact that everything that I loved about the Arkham series to this point is still there means I still get the game I would expect for the series. The story itself, as a comic book fan of Batman, has a real Year One and Nightfall kind of feel to it, and with Batman meeting so many villains for the first time, it will be great to see how that comes together on screen. I am very much looking forward to Origins and adding it to my Arkham Collection, fans of the series can rest easy knowing that Arkham is in safe hands. WB also announced that a season pass will be available for Origins so there will be DLC to follow release that will feature skins, Challenge maps and MP content as well as SP Content such as playing as Bruce Wayne on his final test before he becomes the Batman.

Batman Arkham Origins is released for Xbox 360 October 25th