Batman: Arkham City Game of the Year Edition ain’t cheap, but the game is worth every penny — and I don’t feel that way about many games that cost 40 bucks. It’s a more-than-worthy sequel to Batman: Arkham Asylum. It builds upon the elements that made the first game so memorable without losing the atmosphere and feel of its predecessor.
Developed by Rocksteady Studios and released by Feral Interactive for the Mac, Batman: Arkham City GOTY is packed with all previously released downloadable content including the Harley Quinn’s Revenge pack. The graphics are gorgeous, and the gameplay is easy to learn — though you’ll need a proper gaming mouse with two physical buttons and a scroll wheel. This, of course, rules out Apple’s Magic Mouse.
Batman: Arkham City GOTY builds upon the foundation of Batman: Arkham Asylum, but it’s five times larger than the game world in Batman: Arkham Asylum. Here’s how the game is described: “Arkham City is a vast, open world, gothic metropolis hiding a deep assortment of side missions, secrets and puzzles that Batman will need all of his skills and gadgets to discover and solve. Along the way, players will use Batman’s signature Free Flow combat system to square off against countless thugs and a nightmarish rogue’s gallery including The Joker, The Riddler, Two-Face, Harley Quinn, The Penguin and Mr. Freeze.
“The Harley Quinn’s Revenge mission, a standalone story set two weeks after the events of the main game, sends players back into Arkham City as both Batman and Robin. Players must utilize each of the characters’ unique combat and investigative skills to uncover Harley’s vengeful plan and shut the gates on the urban mega-prison forever. Additional DLC includes the Catwoman pack, in which players become Catwoman in a subplot that takes place alongside the main story, and the Nightwing and Robin bundle packs, which allow players to become Robin and Nightwing as they take on the game’s challenge mode.”
As in Batman: Arkham City, you, as Batman, will face off against multiple bad guys. You’ll use the Freeflow Combat system of combining attacks, counters and gadgets together to do battle. Then there’s the predator mode in which you (Batman) have to use your stealth and wits to systematically take out your enemies. I really found the the predator maps, with options such as “double takedowns,” usable.
At some points in the game, you play as Catwoman, sometimes as Robin, and sometimes as Nighthawk. Unfortunately, you don’t always get to choose when to switch between characters, which I found to be a bit jarring.
Also, you’ll need a fairly beefy Mac (see the system requirements below) to truly appreciate the game, especially since you’ll want things to flow smoothly in your role as crimefighter.
Despite a few gripes with the game, if you enjoyed Batman: Arkham City, you’ll enjoy the expanded options and bigger, badder world that Batman: Arkham City GOTY offers If you’re new to the franchise, you’ll find yourself immersed in a gripping game that tests your reflexes and your mental prowess.
Batman: Arkham City GOTY for the Mac retails for US$39.99. It’s available for direct download from a variety of digital partner sites worldwide including http://www.feralinteractive.com/. A mini-site dedicated to the game is available now at http://www.feralinteractive.com/en/mac-games/bmac/ and trailers can be found at http://www.youtube.com/user/feralinteractive.
Minimum system requirements call for a 2GHz Intel Mac with at least 4GB of RAM, 256MB or better graphics card, and Mac OS 10.7.4 or later. The game does not support the following graphics cards: ATI X1xxx series, ATI HD2xxx series, NVIDIA 9400, NVIDIA 7xxx series, NVIDIA 320M, Intel HD3000 and Intel GMA series.
ADR rating: 9 out of 10