With plenty of third-person action games in development at the moment, the most promising projects are often overlooked for the most outlandish and new. But for those who remember last year’s Batman: Arkham Asylum, the only game on their radar is the upcoming sequel Batman: Arkham City. And in case you fans were worried that the larger game would be calling on the same old characters, the newest image and details on Batman’s legendary avian adversary The Penguin show just how new a spin the developers are putting on old classics with Arkham City.
While the classic portrayal of Penguin from the old televised Batman television series certainly fits the campy world in which he appeared, for many younger Bat-fans, Danny De Vito’s physically disfigured character from Tim Burton’s Batman Returns takes the top spot.
With just one image released of the monocled crime-lord it’s clear that Rocksteady‘s incarnation will be much more grounded in reality, with his gang of thugs far more dangerous, and far less gimmicky than the skeptics may have been expecting.
The image was found by arkhamcity.co.uk, pulled from today’s Australian Sunday Herald supplement, Play. The image may not contain the extensive character reveal we would like, but it does give a clear picture of the gritty and grimy look of both Penguin and his henchmen.
Click the image below to see for yourself:
The image depicts The Penguin without his trademark top hat and cigarette, so what’s immediately apparent is that the developers at Rocksteady aren’t just sticking to the classic tropes and mannerisms of the character. We know that Arkham City‘s Riddler will be different, so the team is clearly making sure that all of Batman’s enemies make sense in the world of Arkham City.
The Herald also includes some comments made by Rocksteady’s Dax Ginn explaining the changes the team is bringing to Penguin’s appearance and behavior, and to his trademark henchmen. The intimidating, one-armed leather-garbed goon in the image above is also a clear departure from the gimmicks of the past, and according to Dax, the large blade he’s brandishing is directly connected to Penguin’s new personality:
“The way that penguin has always been portrayed is as quite an aristocratic, well-spoken gentleman who’s got these twisted delusions of grandeur…So we’ve made him a really horrible, nasty piece of work – but still with the delusion of grandeur. He dresses well, but in a poor taste, and we’ve made him this brutish, brutal guy but also key into collection fascination that hes had through out the years.
“Penguin’s faction is much more about the collection that he has within his museum of all sorts of things but one of those things he collects is heavily artillery. so when you come up against his thugs in the street they are all going to have seriously heavy weapons and that develops throughout the game as well.”
It seems that Penguin’s compulsion is being shifted from birds to collecting weaponry, which should make for a much more dangerous opponent. With so many different villains to fight in Arkham City, it’s good to see that each gang is being given subtle differences, from weapon types to simple tattoos distinguishing their allegiance.
It doesn’t take much to keep hordes of thugs from blending together, so any differences are welcome. On the plus side, we know that the sequel will have more boss battles throughout, and with apparently over 40 hours of gameplay to make our way through, that variety will be needed.
What do you think of the changes being made to Penguin’s character? Are you happy to see some of the sillier aspects toned down for the gritty atmosphere of Arkham City, or were you looking forward to some bird-related humor? Let us know in the comments.
Batman: Arkham City will be coming to the Xbox 360 and PS3 this October 18.