Today, after actually years of waiting around, we finally heard from both WB Montreal, and Rocksteady about the two new games. Neither of which will be out in the next year….
Let’s start with Montreal’s Batman game, that technically doesn’t have Batman in it. Bruce is dead and it’s up to the entire Batfamily to take up the position of dealing with Gotham’s criminal scum. While I’m not fully convinced that Batman is actually dead, I can see it being the “twist” that comes into play around the last half of the game that Bruce faked his death. But on the other hand I can see it actually being Montreal’s choice to stick to it and have Batman actually dead. It’s weird, because while they say it’s not in continuity with Rocksteady’s Arkham Trilogy, there seems to be a lot of overlap of story ideas. Barbara Gordon is not crippled and has not become Oracle, but Wayne Manor is blown to smithereens and Bruce is dead just like in Arkham Knight. So it’s a big toss up. The CGI trailer which was around 7 minutes long showed very little of how the game was actually going to look, but they did do a gameplay clip in a secondary video.
The Gameplay video was much more telling of how exactly the game is going to actually be. The big thing that is getting everyone talking is how much of a “Games as a Service” it looks. With solo & co-op modes being introduced, it looks like it’s going to be fully online at all times. Co-op players can join sessions and drop out whenever and the game world seems to be fully open at all times. Areas are only gated by enemies with level caps, just like in The Division games or the newer Assassin’s Creed games. Enemy health bars and hit point numbers popping off at every hit reveal a lot about how this game seems to just steal ideas from other popular games… Which isn’t really saying anything new, this is WB Montreal that we are talking about. It’s why Arkham Origins is terrible. They are the B team, that comes in after the ground work was laid, all the hard parts done, and then the real devs walk away and Montreal comes in and makes a cheap low quality knock off version of what was popular and give it that good ol’ low quality college try.
I can’t say I was originally excited at all, and with the gameplay I seem to be steadfast in my apathy for the game. It’ll come out sometime next year, when nothing else is out and I’ll play it and enjoy it for what it is. I don’t expect it to be anything near the level of the original Arkham Trilogy, but exactly as lackluster and boring as Orgins was. Interesting idea, if it wasn’t made by the inferior team.
Now… Let’s talk about Rocksteady. After being dead silent for over 5 years, and multiple tweets of “Calm before the storm” tweets literally years ago, they finally announced what they’ve been up to, which is a Suicide Squad game. You know, that super ultra popular franchise? No? Yeah, no one actually cares about Suicide Squad, that movie bombed years ago, and the only reason it’s getting a sequel is because Deadpool Harley Quinn is in it. Before I go on, yes. I have a HUGE issue with Harley being turned into Deadpool. It’s boring, unoriginal, and a very light take on it. Harley was just a fun loving character before, but now they’ve turned her into a 4th wall breaking chick with ‘tude who needs to be as foul and grotesque as possible. Part of Harley’s appeal originally is that she was cute and sexy without being overly so. Spunky and sly with a hint of twisted humor as she was Joker’s girlfriend after all. But now there is no subtlety, just Beaver jokes inserted and the propaganda push of “SHES A LESBIAN!!!!” which is just about as subtle as propaganda gets. No she isn’t, stop writing your agenda to an already established character…. Uh… ok, I think I got that out… Now lets get back to Suicide Squad.
So after literal years of silence we get a CG trailer that possibly maybe perhaps shows off the possibility of what the characters could look like. I say all that because of two things. 1. This is a CGI trailer with absolutely no actual gameplay or character models. We are shown the hypothetical with CG. Name one single CG trailer for any game or movie where it actually looks anything like the end product. You can’t, because it doesn’t exist. No CG trailer ever looks remotely like the final game, because it’s all made up and done by an entirely different studio most of the time. I can almost guarantee that Suicide Squad won’t look anything like it what was shown… so why should I care in the slightest? I shouldn’t. The second reason is because it’s given a release date of… 2022… it’s the middle of 2020 right now and this is going to be a big game, so it’ll probably release in the holiday time frame…. And to pile up on top of it, what large huge game doesn’t get delayed at least twice at this point? So the actual reliable date for this game will almost undoubtedly be Early/mid 2023 after a delay or two.
So what do we get after 5 years of frantically waiting? A big fat goose egg of nothing substantial. Rocksteady is making a Suicide Squad game, that probably has been tampered with by the WB/DC executives for years now to make it into the most cookie cutter pre-fabricated mold of a popular game that probably has been scrapped twice to this point. Coupled with the fact that the game isn’t coming out for another two years AT LEAST, it probably will look EXTREMELY different than what was imagined up in that CGI trailer.
I’ll just leave you with a game comparison to remember. Bioshock Infinite’s announcement trailer vs its actual game.