Just in time for E3, Telltale Games finally released screen shots for its Batman: The Telltale Series, which is set to arrive sometime this summer.
Those screen shots, though, show a game that looks and feels a lot different from the Bat-sized elephant in the room: Rocksteady's iconic Arkham series. This is a completely new kind of Batman game, unlike any we've seen before.
"We've been hard at work at Telltale creating an all-new iteration of the iconic Batman story that puts players in the suit of billionaire Bruce Wayne, just as much as it will put them behind the mask, deciding how to carefully navigate a complex drama, rich with action, crime, corruption, and villainy lurking around every corner of Gotham City," Telltale CEO Kevin Bruner said in a press release. "The complex life and fractured psyche of Bruce Wayne has lent itself to becoming a bold evolution of the signature Telltale role-playing experience, and we couldn't be more excited as we prepare to debut the series to players across the world this summer."
Here's how Batman: The Telltale Series will differ from the Arkham franchise.
From The Page To The Screen
The Arkham games worked off of the Unreal engine as Rocksteady chose to give the Caped Crusader and his world a grittier, more realistic look that had virtually nothing in common with what you see in the pages of a comic book. However, in Batman: The Telltale Series, characters and settings are much more stylized, with the idea being that players are stepping into the brightly-colored world of the comic books themselves. This is Telltale's traditional style, and it's drastically different from what Rocksteady does with its games.
The Man Behind The Mask
Another key difference is that, right off the bat (we're paid by the pun), Telltale's Batman game is focused exclusively on Bruce Wayne, aka Batman. This isn't a game about the Joker or Catwoman or the Riddler. This is about Batman doing what he does best: being a detective, solving crimes and catching the bad guy. That's not to say that Telltale's game won't feature the villains we know from that universe, but the screen shots released only focus mostly on the character that is Batman.
Choices With Consequences
Something Telltale does better than almost every other developer out there is put players in the shoes of its games' characters. Batman is no exception, and it's likely that the player — as Batman — will have to make some pretty tough choices throughout the game that will ultimately affect how the story plays out. This type of branching storytelling was not something the Arkham series dove into too extensively.
The Dark Knight Detective
Although the Rocksteady games featured a fairly extensive Detective Mode to use whenever the Dark Knight had a mystery to unravel, it seems that the Telltale game will focus just as much on the "crime solving" as the "crime fighting." Telltale understands very well how this could work, and already gave players something similar in The Wolf Among Us: at its heart, that title was a detective story.
The first episode of Batman: The Telltale Series releases this summer on consoles, PCs and mobile devices.