Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Batman: Arkham Origins: Initiation review

    Batman: Arkham Origins had a somewhat unfinished feel. In addition to the many bugs, there was also the fact some quests ended abruptly, even if the storyline implied the game was building up to something bigger. One of the more disappointing quests was the one relating to Lady Shiva. Despite being touted as the world's best martial artist in-universe and without, Lady Shiva was nothing more than a re-skinned female ninja and martial artist. Batman said they hadn't seen the last of her but, well, they had.

    At least in Origins.

    The Initiation DLC promises a rematch against Lady Shiva as well as insight into Bruce Wayne's early days of training. Unfortunately, this promising extra is little more than a series of Challenge Rooms followed by a Boss fight. The story, such as it is, is little more than a series of cut-scenes of Bruce's ninja master talking about how worthless the future Batman is before trying to get him killed.

    The premise of the DLC is Bruce Wayne has gone to a remote mountaintop monastery in order to learn the ways of the ninja. Master Kirigi is insulting to Bruce throughout the campaign, saying he doesn't respect the latter's refusal to kill and showing a racist disregard for him throughout. Bruce, himself, never speaks during the DLC but just stands there respectfully the entire time.

If only the DLC was half-as-good as this picture.
    The enemies in Initiation are mostly re-skinned members of the original ones from Origins. The missions, themselves, are just harder variants of the kinds you find there as well. You must sneak around these enemies and take them out silently. You must defeat this entire group all by yourself. Even the final battle against Lady Shiva is nothing special and is rudely interrupted by the presence of other enemies.

   Another complaint about the DLC is that it's actually difficult to find. It's not located on the main menu but the challenge maps and it took me awhile to track it down. The skins for Bruce Wayne as a trainee and a ninja are useful but I'm not sure I'm going to get much use out of them.

    In conclusion, Initiation is not worth buying. The Challenge Rooms aren't even that fun and the final boss fight with Lady Shiva takes forever to get to. Save your money and play around in the Challenge Rooms the game provides for free.


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