Saturday, 15 October 2011

Batman (PC Engine)

So, this game is obviously based on the 1989 live action Batman movie (ie, the good one that isn't from the 60s). Although judging by what I've played of it, it's based on an alternate interpretation where batman is a grim, avenging janitor of the night. For example, the first set of stages has you walking around the streets of Gotham City picking up litter (though a more sensible person might suggest that this litter is the ingredients of Joker Venom. Of course, they'd be fools, since why would they all just be strewn around the streets at random? ) while beating up.avoiding mimes, and the second set has you in the museum, being up goons in puffa jackets and cleaning graffiti off of paintings. I haven't got to the third set of stages yet (don't laugh! There's 12 stages in each set, and they're pretty hard!), but I assume it has Batman going round to Comissioner Gordon's house to do the dishes or something.
It might sound like I don't like this game, but I really do! In fact, of all the Batman games I've played, it's probably my favourite! It's not very Batman-like (though maybe you could stretch your imagination and say that picking up all the Joker Venom ingredients in the first area is a game-substitute for detective work), but it is very fun to play. It also does a couple of things that are unusual for the maze game genre. For example, you aren't limited in your ability to get rid of enemies. In most maze games, you can only take out enemies with a temporary power-up, while in Batman, you just throw a batarang to stun them, them walk into them to make them fly off in an amusing manner. And the power-ups you do get, that do things like increase your walking speed or the range of your batarangs are permanent, even when you lose a life or finish a stage!
The music is good, too. But not very atmospheric, except in the very short (and very nice looking) cutscenes you get between areas.

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