Batman vs. The Joker and an army of ventilation gates

batman arkham asylum mash x to open vents copy

As you probably already know from the previous post, I beat Batman: Arkham Asylum over the weekend. It was really enjoyable and constantly full of stuff to do, even if there’s a few aspects of it that I found bothersome–more on that in a bit–and if someone had simply told me it was more or less Super Metroid plus Deus Ex: Human Revolution sooner, I would not be as late as I am to this crazy shindig. But whatevs, I did it. Not like I’m opposed to catching up on older games. But truthfully, I think I’m now good with Batman for a bit, not feeling the need to bat-glide right over to Arkham City or Arkham Origins. Though maybe that 3DS game has potential…

At the time of kicking The Joker’s clownish ass back behind bars and completing the game proper, my final stats were as follows:

  • Challenges – 2%
  • Riddles – 142/240
  • Upgrades – 18/20
  • Character Bios – 31/42
  • Completed – 73%

Not bad, not bad. But could be better overall. I’ve since gone back and upped all of those stats, now sitting at an 85% completion rate, with everything in the main campaign found, unlocked, and listened to. Whoop whoop, go moi. However, that means, in order to earn the remaining 15%, I have to not only finish all the challenges, which come in two forms, but also do them perfectly for all their medals. Which seems extremely difficult. In the Combat challenges, you fight against four rounds of enemies and earn points by combo-chaining attacks together, never getting hit, and using a ton of variety. In Silent Predator, you are tasked with taking out a group of enemies in a room from the main game itself, with three specific tasks to accomplish along the way. There’s a handful of each of these, and the difficulty between one and another appears to ramp up dramatically. I’ve tried a few and done simply mediocre on ’em, so I can officially wave goodbye to a 100% completion rate.

What I’m really here to talk about is how much you are required to mash the X button in Batman: Arkham Asylum. It’s ridiculous. For all his brawn and muscles and high technology, Batman still has to mash on the X button to pull open/kick out ventilation shafts, rip down glass walls, and topple The Joker off a ledge multiple times during the final fight. That latter reason, I get–truly. But everything else feels unnecessary and is quite tiring, especially when you use the upgraded Batclaw to rip open glass walls from afar, which seem to take more button presses than anything else. Throw in the notion that you’re also, sort of, mashing X a lot during combat to dodge out of the way, and well…that button is getting some seriously loving. I’m not generally opposed to these kind of mini-mash QTE festivals, but Batman uses vents a lot, certainly more than doors, and I don’t understand why it couldn’t have been a simple single button press to open the vent. Is it more interactive? Sure, but it’s badly designed and does not make me feel like a badass superhero.

If you’d like to really stave off any sliver of interest to see how Arkham City and Arkham Origins play out, just let me know if this mechanic is still there. If so, I’ll pass on the mash.

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2 responses to “Batman vs. The Joker and an army of ventilation gates

  1. Pingback: Having trouble surveying the score in Grand Theft Auto V | Grinding Down

  2. Pingback: Trying to thieve as a master thief in Thief | Grinding Down

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