The Telltale games are becoming a movement in their own right; story driven, choose-able path adventure games where you follow a character and make choices on their behalf, occasionally taking part in action. Telltale set their games in the worlds of popular shows and games, from The Walking Dead to Borderlands, so fans of those products will usually enjoy the Telltale version.
A new kind of adventure for Batman
The latest to get this treatment is Batman in the aptly-named ‘Batman - The Telltale Series’, arguably their biggest move yet, bringing us a dramatic tale of the dark knight.
Batman - The Telltale Series is a huge new entry into the hall of fame for Batman games. Recently there was the massive if somewhat shaky success of the Arkham series, which proved that fans love the classic, comic book Batman as much as the ‘realistic’ reboots seen in the movies. As fans of Telltale games know, they produce games with a distinct comic book style which lends itself perfectly to Batman and Gotham City. Even the font of the title screen screams of the deco style seen in the Batman cartoons of the 90s. The game focuses more on Bruce Wayne, the man behind the bat, which makes sense as Telltale games let story and personality come to the fore while action sits back. The story also focuses on the more relatable characters of Gotham, such as the Falcone crime family and Harvey Dent, which are ripe for drawing psychological comparison with Bruce.
Looking good and full of choices
The obvious first thing to notice about Batman - The Telltale Series is that while it looks great, this is a Telltale game and not a photorealistic game. They focus on comic book style artwork and you will see black lines around faces, rather than attempts to make picture perfect textures. Fortunately, this is something you adapt to almost instantly and it allows the game to run very smoothly on any machine, even mobile devices. You get a little more action than in previous Telltale games too, which largely revolves around quicktime button pushing events, but the real meat is in making choices for Bruce which have a clear impact later on in the story. Expect some emotional moments and hard decisions! These are given more dramatic impact by the fantastic voice acting skills of Troy Baker as Bruce Wayne/Batman, Travis Willingham as Harvey Dent/Two-Face and Laura Bailey as Selina Kyle/Catwoman. Scenes of the gloomy Gotham cityscape are captured perfectly, while the music is bang-on the tone of the 90s cartoon and to an extent, the Arkham game series.
A huge win for the caped crusader
It’s no surprise that Batman - The Telltale Series is huge, with fans all over the world. This game takes one of the legends of comics and a mechanic for in-depth storytelling, a marriage people have wanted for a long time, then combines them into a tour de force. If you ever want to see what makes Batman tick and really get drawn into a story, this is the game for you. With strong artistic style and lots of meaningful choice, you will find yourself playing this again and again.