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Story

Basically, the story is the same as the film. It begins as Batman enters the scarecrows lair, and is drugged with Crane\'s toxin. At this point, he flashes back to his training with the league of shadows. At this point, the story unfolds just like the film.

Game Play

This game is a whole lot of fun. If you are like me, and enjoy challenge and ease of game play, you will enjoy this a lot. The action is mostly stealth based, much like Tom Clancy\'s Splinter Cell. There are some situations where you have to use stealth, or you are shot to death, (I learned this a frustrating amount of times.) The fighting is great as well, relying on the sweet new moves shown in the film. You can punch or kick, much like any other game. However, sometimes the game promps you to hit (Y) which produces a context sensitive movement. For example, if enemies surround you, you hit the button, and it triggers a multi attack, in which Batman performs a jump/kick/spin attack, rendering all the enemies helpless for a couple seconds. There are various gadgets which can be used to great effect, but only at certain times and in certain areas. For example, you have the Batarang, a small, sharp blade in the shape of a bat. Most of the time, you can\\'t use it, however, if you see a circle over a rope or explosive barrels, you can throw it and trigger the response. I will tell you here and now, the game is highly cinematic, and that is either a great thing, or a terrible thing. I for one enjoy good movie licensed games, however, I know a great deal of gamers have nightmares about them. If you are one of those people, by all means, AVOID this game! If you enjoy this style like I do though, you will LOVE this.

Controls

The controls are all quite simple, you will have them learned in less than 30 minutes. If you play video games at all, I would not worry about these. Unlike the complex controls in Metroid Prime, this are very standard, and user friendly.

Graphics

This game is the bomb. The graphics are just phenomenal. The texturing is all done very well. You can see various textures in walls and pipes, cars, clothes, etc... Another highlight is the extremely advanced facial animation. I have never played a game with this much of a resemblance to the actors of a film, or a living being for that matter. This game greatly captures personalities, movements, and actions of the characters in the film. I found myself gawking at shiny floors more than once. You will not be disappointed with these graphics.

Sound

The in game sound is excellent. The music is not composed by James Newton Howard and Hans Zimmer like in the film, but the game score is very good, and makes a fair replacement. In fact, the score is so integrated, that at times, a punch will be accentuated by an orchestral hit or a burst of brass. Music critics will not be too put off, even though the great film score is completely gone. The sound effects are also great. Explosions, gun fire, even trickling water, beautiful. The only major complaint with sound is in the cut scenes. They tend to crackle and pop occasionally, very strange, considering the quality of the game. The picture is also a bit fuzzy in the cut scenes, not sure what went wrong there... Good cut scenes though!

Appropriateness

-Language This is the biggest issue in this game. About every mild word is used in this game at least 3 or 4 times. The total tally is around 20 profane words, far to many for a video game, and much more than the fantastic film. -Violence This is not a major issue for me. If you enjoy Batman or any superhero, you will not be offended by this. The violence is completely bloodless, and the bodies disappear in a few seconds. However, if you are strongly offended by violence, this is not your game, as much of it relies on slamming thugs into floors and fighting constantly. -Other Issues Not many. The only things that may bother some players are references to drugs, (thugs and gangsters) and sometimes you see crates carrying them. There is a level where you bust one open, and a bunch of bags of powder fall out. If you are strongly against drug content (even portrayed negatively) I advise caution. Another issue is the tone of the game, it is very dark, and Arkham Assylum can get downright creepy. But hey, this is Batman!

Conclusion

This is one of the best games of 2005. The voice acting by, Christian Bale, Katie Holmes, Cillian Murphy, Morgan Freeman and Michael Caine is all great. If you loved the movie, and like a good stealth game, buy this, you won\'t regret it.

Final Score 90%

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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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