Experience what it’s like to be Batman and face off against Gotham's greatest villians. Explore every inch of Arkham Asylum and roam freely on the infamous island.
User reviews: Overwhelmingly Positive (6,712 reviews)
Release Date: Mar 26, 2010

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Recommended By Curators

"Arkham City was great, Arkham Origins was ... not. For me, the best of the bunch is the first, Arkham Asylum. You just can't beat those Scarecrow bits!"

About This Game

Critically acclaimed Batman: Arkham Asylum returns with a remastered Game of the Year Edition, featuring 4 extra Challenge Maps. The additional Challenge Maps are Crime Alley; Scarecrow Nightmare; Totally Insane and Nocturnal Hunter (both from the Insane Night Map Pack).
  • Utilize the unique FreeFlow™ combat system to chain together unlimited combos seamlessly and battle with huge groups of The Joker’s henchmen in brutal melee brawls
  • Investigate as Batman, the WORLD’S GREATEST DETECTIVE, by solving intricate puzzles with the help of cutting edge forensic tools including x-ray scanning, fingerprint scans, ‘Amido Black’ spray and a pheromone tracker
  • Face off against Gotham’s greatest villains including The Joker, HARLEY QUINN, POISON IVY and KILLER CROC
  • Become the Invisible Predator™ with Batman’s fear takedowns and unique vantage point system to move without being seen and hunt enemies
  • Choose multiple takedown methods, including swooping from the sky and smashing through walls.
  • Explore every inch of Arkham Asylum and roam freely on the infamous island, presented for the first time ever in its gritty and realistic entirety
  • Experience what it’s like to be BATMAN using BATARANGS, explosive gel aerosol, The Batclaw, sonar resonator and the line launcher
  • Unlock more secrets by completing hidden challenges in the world and develop and customize equipment by earning experience points
  • Enjoy complete superhero freedom in the environment with the use of Batman’s grapnel gun to get to any place you can see, jump from any height and glide in any direction

System Requirements

    • OS: Vista/XP
    • Processor: 3Ghz Intel or AMD or any Dual Core
    • Memory: 1GB Ram(XP)/2GB Ram
    • Graphics: PCI Express SM3 NVidia 6600/ ATI 1300
    • DirectX®: 9
    • Hard Drive: 8GB free space
    • Sound: Any onboard sound card
Helpful customer reviews
63 of 66 people (95%) found this review helpful
43.6 hrs on record
NOTE: Since this is the first game in the franchise, I will review it as if the sequels did not exist.

TL:DR? See CONCLUSION

INTRODUCTION:
Batman Arkham Asylum is an action-adventure game and the first title on the critically acclaimed Arkham franchise. The game was released in 2009, developed by Rocksteady Studios and published by Warner Brothers Interactive Entertainment. Arkham Asylum currently (as of the writing of this review 2014), holds the Guinness World Record for “Most critically acclaimed superhero videogame” as well as several Game of the Year awards. The Story was written by Paul Dini who's notable work include Batman: Animated Series and Batman Beyond.

In this game Batman, after just having apprehended the Joker, takes him to the now infamous Arkham Asylum. Unfortunately, Batman soon realizes that it was all part of Joker's plan in an elaborate scheme to stage a major prison riot and take over the Asylum. Now trapped, Batman has to stop the Joker and at the same time, discover whatever sinister plot the Joker has started which seems to involve a new drug called Titan.

PROS:
+ Graphically beautiful with amazing locations, well textured characters and environment
+ Excellent Voice acting from the cast, specially on Kevin Conroy (Batman) and Mark Hamill (Joker)
+ Combat Mechanic (Free Flow Combat) that goes well with...
+ Fluid Animation quality where Batman can chain attacks with absolute grace
+ Lots of cool gadgets and upgrades that can aid you in several situations
+ Perfect blend of Action and Stealth without sacrificing either one
+ Scarecrow Segments and Riddler Challenges
+ Great use of the Batman Lore with cameo appearances or references to other characters and locations in the Batman Universe
+ Excellent Story that really draws you in
+ Re-playability due to unlockable Challenges and a New Game Plus
+ Easy to learn controls and game mechanic
+ Relatively medium sized map that rewards exploration
+ Excessive amount of bone breaking physical violence

CONS:
- Detective mode can be abused by perpetually leaving it active since it has no real drawback
- Underwhelming Mini bosses who can be defeated in more or less the same manner
- VERY disappointing Boss (Super Villain) battles which is perhaps the game's greatest flaw
- Combat mechanic can potentially become repetitive
- Games For Windows Live
- Game does not include a Shark Repellent

CONCLUSION:
GREAT GAME and a GOOD BUY

The game is a great comicbook / cartoon to video game adaptation of Batman. Easy to learn and use of the freeflow combat mechanic coupled with a well implemented stealth system makes the gameplay fun. The story is true to the formula that made most Batman cartoons and animated movies great with some added violence and mature content. Engaging and lovely atmosphere that is amplified by the excellent voice acting quality from the cast. Although the bosses in this game does not live up to the build up of the story, it still nonetheless wraps up each story arc pretty neatly.

Highly recommended to Batman, Martial arts or Stealth fans out there. At $20 for its full price this game is worth every penny and it should be a no-brainer when you see it on a sale.
Posted: September 6
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60 of 63 people (95%) found this review helpful
15.4 hrs on record
Here are a few quotes from the game that are reason enough to buy it.

The Joker: [Over the P.A. system] Ding d-ding, dong! Joker here! Here's what's new in the asylum... Some idiot is running around the asylum, dressed like a bat...! I know! Crazy! He should be considered costumed and dangerous.
[laughter]

Thug: Allright the bombs are on the gargoyles.
Joker: Ok, Here goes!
Thug: BUT WAIT IM STILL UP HERE
<BOOM>
Joker: Oops.

Employee's wife: Hello? Is anyone there? I'm trying to reach Steve!
Joker: One moment, I'll see if I can find him!
Employee's Wife: Thank you.
*after a second*
Joker: Sorry, but I can only find his head! I'll get back to you when I find the rest of him!

The Joker: [Over the P.A. system] Tell me Bats. What are you really scared of? Failing to save this cesspool of a city? Not finding the Commissioner in time? Me, in a thong?

The Joker: Paging Dr Bat, paging Dr Bat, is there a Dr Bat in the room?
Posted: August 3
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42 of 55 people (76%) found this review helpful
12.6 hrs on record
When the legendary comic book hero Batman brings Joker back to Arkham Asylum for the 100th time, Joker promptly escapes and takes over the asylum. This is a 3rd person beat-em up, Metroid-vania-ish adventure with a lot of diversity. You'll go through sewers, brick buildings, a clock tower, libraries, ruins, caves, an outdoor courtyard and even the madness of the Caped Crusader's Mind. Since there is backtracking, the game will introduce new elements and paths to the backtracking, so it doesn't seem like a backtrack. New tricks, traps, situations, plant infestations and enemies will stand in your way. You never have a sense of being lost, but there is a lot of ground (and height) to explore.

As you work your way all over Arkham Island, you'll be taunted by the Joker who is voiced by Luke Skywalker for those that remember the old Batman: The Animated Series. Kevin Conroy reprises his role from the series as Batman, and they're both excellent.

As Batman, you've got a lot of controls here, left stick to move, right stick to control the camera, attack button, counter button, stun attack button, duck / stealth button, detective mode button, quick batterang, quick hookshot, grappling hook to climb, quick tool change, aim button, tool attack button, and finally a universal button to not only run, but holding the same button will also jump when you come to the edge, glide and its just batman auto-pilot really. You can double tap the action button to dive roll out of the way, but the times to use it are few and far between. There are more controls than buttons on the X-Box controller.

You unlock several tools / weapons for Batman to use, such as batterangs, grappling hooks, explosive gel and so on. The tools for the most part can be used on the fly against enemies by double tapping the left (batterang) or right (grappler) trigger. You can use explosive gel to set a trap for enemies or blow up walls. Its pretty nice, but its just too slow to set up, so for the most part, you'll just be punching bad guys, dive kicking from gargoyles and grapple hooking up to safety.

Its fun to attack spam enemies and wipe out a dozen enemies. However, enemies with guns will murder you quickly, which is good, because then you need to rely and stealth and tactics instead of button mashing. The enemies will telegraph their attacks, so you can counter them or attack them before they do. Knife wielders will need to be stunned. The system feels good, but again its sometimes just mash 1 button as if Batman were dancing between a dozen partners. The final enemy in a group always has a slow motion knock out where you'll get to see ragdoll glitches and poor hit detection. Is it a game breaker no. Does it happen a lot? Yes and when it happens with every battle, it shouldn't have been accentuated.

While there is little enemy diversity, the big appeal comes from the game's characters and situations. You'll fight against some of Batman's biggest villains that are in Arkham. The situations, you'll have to use Batman's tools and some parts the game will spoon feed you what you need to do and other parts, you're free to figure it out on your own. The map will show you where you need to go, but its up to you to get there. You'll have to go through air ducts, go high, go low and every so often go through a door like a normal person. There is a lot of traversal in this game, you're able to swoop down on enemies, glide from place to place, grappling hook up to ledges, hang from ledges, shimmy around ledges. Everything that's been done in Just Cause 2, but now its slower.

As mentioned before, there is a detective mode that basically a hints mode. It will highlight air vents to crawl through, you'll be able to see through walls to enemy skeletons. You will have to use detective mode to track trails of scents and fingerprints. Detective mode will help you to find all of the Riddler trophies, which are usually in high vents. They're not hidden very well and it doesn't feel like a real reward for exploration, more like poor padding for the game.

The real problem here is the canned animations, which normally I have no problem with, but in this game, I really felt the animations. Batman grapple hooking up to a gargoyle, batman pulling a vent off an air duct, batman kicking a vent out of an air duct, Batman pulling an object with the grappling hook, Batman crawling out of a pit. You'll feel it all and some of the animations, you'll need to rapidly press the action button.

On top of all of that, you're unlocking a lot of extras as you progress through the game. Challenge rooms, character art and so on. There is a lot of extra content here.

When you die, you're taken to an animated scene of the Joker or whatever boss you die on to hear a one liner, then sent back to the last checkpoint. That just wasn't needed and wastes time like a lot of the animation. If only there was a setting to turn it off.

With all of that being said, this is still a good, fun game that compels you to play through it. The characters are bright and vibrant. It is a good story, but would it be its flaws would be accentuated more if it were not a Batman game without its cast of characters.
Posted: April 29
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17 of 18 people (94%) found this review helpful
14.0 hrs on record
Great game! if you never played any of the Arkham games then this is the one to start with! The game has great visuals, great combat, and a good narrative. You get a good sum of boss battles, but they're a bit too easy (In my opinion) but the thing that makes this game truly fun is the Joker. The Joker is more relatable to the comics than Christopher Nolan's version of the Joker, but the Joker is still a great villain, and it could be one of the best villains in a video game. A good thing the game does is that the game has a ton of villains, but it does not use the most popular ones (Probably to save for sequels). The villains you will see in the game are Joker, Bane, Ivy, Harley Quinn, Mr. Zsasz, Killer Croc and Scarecrow. I spent 12 hours playing this game, and it is a good length for a game like this, plus there is a reasonable amount of replay value. There are also collectables as well, Ridler trophy's, tapes from patients (villains), and unlock bios for different characters. Also there are challenges as well. The game is a true master piece!
Posted: July 13
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13 of 13 people (100%) found this review helpful
37.6 hrs on record
Just finished this game and I admit it made me understand why the "Arkham" series of Batman games is so popular. The game has very nice and well-balanced mix of combat, puzzle solving and platforming. Lots of effort was put into all mechanics and as a result the player never gets bored with one part or another due to constant variation. Mechanically the game is very solid and it does give you a variety of things to learn in order to be able to progress without getting too overwhelming. All new tricks are introduced at a reasonable pace and most are explained well enough (also thanks to the fact that you are immediately forced to use the new unlocked gadgets in order to progress forward). The game is not entirely open-world and gives you a number of "hubs" or areas to explore and act in while unlocking them one after another. This makes the experience a bit more linear than some might like. Although, once again, the level design is really good and it will make your exploration enjoyable throughout the whole title.
The voice-acting is very well done and so are the cutscenes. The lore obviously adds a lot of charm to the game with lots of nice little details like interviews (voiced dialogues telling about the characters' past) and biographies to unlock and collect. The in-game graphics still look pretty good although some textures and objects do look at little bit outdated (i.e. low-resolution). Some tweaking with the usage of Steam forums might also be required in order to make the not-entirely-optimal port run at maximum resolution and with maximized visual effects even on reasonably modern systems.
The story is reasonably entertaining and holds the game together well to make it interesting for the player. The main questions the game asks (as its name states) are those of sanity and madness and how one can slide from the former into the latter while also asking the player whether the criminals can be considered as "ill" and/or "uncurable". Obviously, the aesthetics of the game is somewhat grim although not without some jokes inbetween (if you like the gags Joker produces).
One (non-crucial) problem consists in the fact that one can not access all in-game secrets that one detects immediately (special gadgets that unlock later are required for this). Thus I have spent some time in vain wondering whether I could not find the right approach to the secret before I gave in and Internet told me those secrets can only be accessed later on in the game.
The DLCs barely add anything to the main game as they do the same thing as other in-game stealth and arena combat pieces only in new locations. So if you are dying to do more combat/stealth, they can serve as some additional fun, but otherwise they are nothing really interesting. Same goes for the challenges, which basically repeat the in-game locations for arena combat and stealth missions with slight variations (enemy composition and/or additional environmental restrictions). While all of them can serve to improve your in-game stealth and combat skills, the main game learning cruve is so nicely adjusted that it is quite enough to just play the "Normal" difficulty mode continuously to gradually learn and use everything that might be necessary to beat the game.
Overall, if you want to start off with the first Batman game that made the whole series so famous, you will not be disappointed and enjoy your time. I heartily recommend this title.
Posted: August 22
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257 of 290 people (89%) found this review helpful
9.5 hrs on record
Still the best Batman game in the Arkham series and probably the best Batman game ever made. The story involves Batman catching Joker easily after a recent robbery and, coincidentally, Joker's gang moved to the Asylum because of an issue at the Blackgate Prison - once inside the Asylum, the Joker escapes and taskes control of the Asylum and prepares to unearth something far worse than what you initially suspect. You play as Batman trying to unearth this plot and once again stop the Joker.

To this day, this game still has amazing visuals, Batman himself covering around half the screen, looks the part and stands strong and confident as the character should as well as the texture work on his suit are top notch - the rest of the game fairs the same, since the game has been given an outstanding amount of care and work into every area you go through. Not one area in the game feels exactly the same as another even if they look similar. Very stellar work of textures all around overall.

I don't say this is the best Batman game out there for no reason - gameplay is pretty basic "Brawler" style with very minor puzzle solving, but what makes this game different, from, say a game like Assassin's Creed - is the "Free Flow combat system" the game has. The combat is slightly similar to the first Assassin's Creed, except - the flow combat system allows Batman to basically jump from one foe to another in a very fast manner, almost rythmically, to get a combo counter to go as high as you can while still making it challenging by giving the foes still standing a fighting chance and implementing counters.

You can also explore the entirety of the Arkham Asylum as you unlock areas and you can do a variety of things while exploring, you can face groups of enemies scattered around, you can do Riddler Challenges - whom are a bunch of mini puzzles scattered around the Asylum that involves the use of Batman's Detective Mode, these range from finding a specific item found in the area or marks that require the Detective Mode to find and a "Complete the Mark" type of game that involves you scanning the area from specific places to complete a full mark, etc - Riddler trophies, and a bunch of case files to find out more background information on Batman characters and villains (as well as the history behind Arkahm Asylum) that are often very well realized and fun to hear.

The Detective Mode & Gadgets: You'll be using these a LOT on your trudge through Arkham Asylum. Ranging from the standard Batarangs and Grappling hook (used for mundane objectives such as getting to and pulling out vents from hard to reach places, etc), the Explosive Gel (Used a lot to surprise enemies, to find weak walls to find trophies and secrets and to progress in the story as well!) and a bunch more. The Detecive Mode helps you analyze weak walls to use your Explosive Gel on and other gadgets as well as analyze enemy/allies conditions and, more important later on in the game, to find out which enemies carry weapons or are special enemies.).

So in general, if you ever wanted to know and feel what a life in the day of Batman is, this is definately your game, more so than the sequels (imo). From the excellent assets and sound to follow it up with, and the pitch perfect gameplay to go along with it, this sits as one of my favourite video game experiences and currently my best experience playing as the legendary Dark Knight.

A++
Posted: November 25, 2013
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