Warner Bros. Focusing on ‘Batman: Arkham Origins’ Story DLC Not Game-Breaking Bug Fixes

Published 1 year ago by

Batman Arkham Origins Joker Art

Batman: Arkham Origins has been a controversial title ever since it was first announced – with many gamers initially branding the property a shameless cash grab. Despite changing developers, the game managed to secure solid (albeit not stellar) review scores and sales. Sadly, the game has struggled to break through a crowded holiday season which included annual Assassin’s Creed, Battlefield, and Call of Duty installments – in addition to Sony and Microsoft’s next-generation console launches – and isn’t expected to reach anywhere close to sales of its Arkham City predecessor.

Warner Bros. is determined to support Arkham Origins (on most platforms) with downloadable content. The publisher has already released the “Initiation” as well as Deathstroke challenge maps, along with several pre-order bonus skins, and is on-track to deliver a highly-anticipated story add-on in the coming months. Unfortunately, the developer is so committed to the story DLC, it sounds as though they’ve shifted resources away from patch fixes to ensure the add-on arrives in a timely manner.

Fans who have been enjoying the game will, no doubt, be looking forward to the upcoming DLC, which is expected to feature iconic Bat-villain Mr. Freeze; however, there are still plenty of players who were hoping to see Warner Bros. Montreal sure-up a number of frustrating glitches. To that end, one especially discouraged gamer took to the Arkham Origins forum in an effort to get an update from the development team on when to expect a new patch.

Batman Arkham Origins Villains Explained

In response, community admin Mercury, dropped the following official (and contentious) update:

Hi all,

The team is currently working hard on the upcoming story DLC and there currently are no plans for releasing another patch to address the issues that have been reported on the forums.

If we do move forward with creating a new patch, it will try to address the progression blocking bugs for players, not the minor glitches that do not prevent one from continuing to play. The issues that are not progression blockers will unfortunately no longer be addressed.

We apologize for any inconvenience this has caused for some of you, and want to thank you for having been patient.

Needless to say, reaction to the comment was overwhelmingly negative – with many gamers pointing out that Warner Bros. Montreal is chasing further money from players without delivering a stable version of the core game. The news is especially disappointing considering that developer isn’t even guaranteeing that they’ll fix an especially nasty (and relatively common) set of bugs that block player progression and force full restarts of the story campaign.

For years, game makers have come under criticism for taking advantage of the ability to patch games by shipping out broken builds before the package is ready (to meet marketing schedules or release in favorable calendar windows) – with the promise they’ll stabilize the experience after launch. Gamers had understandable concerns but most developers have continued to refine their titles through post-release patching – which have, for the most part, caused players to accept the process as the new status quo. However, the situation at Warner Bros. Interactive, who are willfully sidelining a serious problem with their game, simply to pump out further billable content, is an unfortunate realization of the initial concern.

Batman Arkham Origins Mr Freeze DLC

Bugs are an irritating, albeit normal, part of the development process and most gamers would likely have no problem accepting a random game freeze once in a while but the studio’s unwillingness to address actual game-breaking problems in favor of new content is significantly harder to swallow. Had the publisher said they were hard at work on a patch for any progression bugs but would be abandoning minor glitches to polish up the story DLC, most customers would have likely been more understanding.

Of course, this isn’t the first time (this week) that Warner Bros. Interactive has failed to make good on a promise to consumers – having cancelled their Arkham Origins season pass offering on the Wii U (including the aforementioned story-based DLC). No doubt, some of those gamers might have purchased the title on a different console, had they known that the developer would simply abandon development if demand was lower than expected. With so many players locked out of further story progress, not to mention Wii U owners that have been shut out of the title’s multiplayer and post-release DLC, Warner Bros. may have soured a significant chunk of consumers on future Arkham series titles.

That said, it’s hard to imagine that the publisher will change its mind and invest a lot of manpower in fixing all Arkham Origins glitches – but we’ll keep our fingers crossed that they “do move forward with creating a new patch” and, at the very least, deliver a stable version of the title free of game-breaking progression bugs.


Batman: Arkham Origins is available on PC, PS3, Wii U and Xbox 360.

Follow me on Twitter @benkendrick.

Source: Warner Bros. Interactive [via Polygon]

TAGS: Batman, Batman Arkham Origins, PC, PS3, Warner Bros. Interactive, Wii U, Xbox 360

  • jwalka

    fix the heading so people don’t get confused 😛 they said game breaking bugs will be fixed (eventually), just minor stuff won’t.

    • Mo

      Agree with jwalka. Your title is wrong.

      • http://gamerant.com/author/benk Ben Kendrick

        Both the title and content in the article is accurate.

        They specifically said “IF” they do another patch, they will only address game-breaking bugs. “IF” not “WHEN.” “IF we do move forward with creating a new patch, it will try to address the progression blocking bugs for players.”

        The main point: “There currently are no plans for releasing another patch to address the issues that have been reported on the forums.” Meaning – currently no plans for another patch at all. Not even one that addresses the game-breaking bugs.

        • http://gamerant.com/author/dyce/ Andrew Dyce

          And if a developer even says “if we release another patch,” that’s a pretty strong sign that it ain’t happening. If there was even a chance they were planning one, they’d simply refer to their next patch and keep the date completely vague.

          • http://www.facebook.com/DownloadableConflict TaboriHK

            Yeah if anything I think the title is pretty fair. They could have titled this piece, “WB Not Interested In Doing The Bare Minimum” and would still be accurate.

  • http://screenrant.com boogoo

    I’m surprised they were so honest about it.

    • Pak55

      That’s a good point. It still feels dirty but least they did not waste people’s time or get their hopes up. I guess that counts for something.

  • http://www.the-voices.net Shane

    Wow, while I’m not an EA fan, at least I support that they halted DLC development to fix BF4 bugs.

    This just seems like a money grab.

    • IAmRatchet

      The whole game was a money grab. Rocksteady left to do their own thing for a bit, but WB still wanted another Arkham game. But they knew they didn’t want a sequel because then the fans would be mad because they’d f*** it up, so they decided to f*** up history instead by making a prequel.

      It’s not a bad game, it’s just not as good as the Rocksteady games. We all knew that the minute it was announced they weren’t making it.

  • Michael

    Looks like I won’t be getting this game because the developers don’t care about their player base, only their wallets.

    If fans can create their own patches at least for the PC version to fix the minor bugs then maybe I will give it a chance.

    • DR34P!RATE

      Wow… sadly, this is NOT the first WB property that this has happened with.

      Monolith (developers) under WB (pulishers)released a fund but completely broken console MOBA with a setting in the Lord of the Rings universe called Guardians of Middle earth.

      It released on both consoles with HUGE issues, a couple were fixed, a couple were improved, most were ignored. They even ported over to PC to grab a little more cash with the same result.

      Monolith/WB did the same thing with Gotham City Imposters. I am not sure how EA managed to grab worst company status two years in a row with this crap going on at WB. Probably because fewer people know about it.

  • GeeEmm

    Way to go WB! LOL

    • DR34P!RATE

      Oh, and let’s not forget that every Mortal Kombat game published by WB has AWFUL connection issues for multiplayer.

  • B bop

    Oh well, doesn’t matter anyway because I won’t be playing it any more as I’ve traded it in and am not interested in any further dlc. I am just going to wait for rocksteadys big announcement on there next game!!! I am hoping it will be a batman superman game that will be epic!! And if anyone can make a good supes game it’s rocksteady !! With co-op mode!!!! Open world game just imagine the possibilities! I’m clearly over excited myself from an announcement that may never happen lol.

  • http://www.facebook.com/DownloadableConflict TaboriHK

    Remember when this game was not yet released and there were those videos from WB talking about how “honored” they were to be part of the “legacy” of this series and blah blah blah?

    Please? Anyone? Remember this the next time you hear a company talking about how ‘seriously’ they take a project that has been shifted over to them to make a cash grab. Their job is wholly just to tell you “what you know is true isn’t actually true, we swear!”

  • Isaac

    Sad and lazy. Get it together WB!