I have played all the Batman games since the Nintendo NES days. I had high expectations for this game and they were mostly met. However the game had numerous glitches the most frustrating of which was the controls. I suffered several deaths in the middle of fights due to problems with the controls and was even more frustrating trying to swap tools in a hurry. These are things that should seriously be considered in future titles. That being said it is still a worthy game for fans of the series.
Out of all 3 games in this series, this one by far is the weakest. Repetitive game play becomes almost painful. Most missions and levels are nothing more than fighting a group of bad guys , all of them always armed with the EXACT same weapons.....knife, gun, bat, shield and a electric baton. I almost began avoiding fights simply because I got so tired of the same exact fight sequences.
Batman's free roam while grappling onto buildings has been GREATLY reduced. You'll spend more time gliding around looking for an "allowed" grappling point , then you will actually grappling.
Also, it becomes frustrating when you realize the complete break in continuity. Example, Batman is capable of successfully blocking Deathstroke's sword attacks without receiving any damage, and rightfully so. He is wearing an armor plated Bat Suit. Yet a common thug is able to , not only slice and injure Batman with a KNIFE or machete, but they are fully capable of killing Batman!!!
Boss fight scenes are also repetitive and some bosses you'll actually fight several times.....THE SAME WAY!!! It's blatantly obvious that this game was simply made to be a quick "cash cow", riding off the success of the previous releases. It's kind of sad that the Joker is the main enemy yet again , and there is really no point for this , as it isn't even fully explained. Thanks to Game Fly, you can rent this one and send it back.
The game looks great, no question about it. The controls are better than they were in Asylum, but still a bit clunky compared to City.
The two main shortcomings this game has in my opinion:
1.) The main storyline is way too short, probably the shortest of the trilogy. Once you're done with that, the side missions kind of feel like a chore. I gave up about an hour after finishing the main storyline.
2.) The villains are mostly enemies you've fought in the two previous installments. Some of them you'll have to fight multiple times throughout the game, which seems a little lazy as far as game design. Others, the fight lasts 30 seconds, if you even have to fight them at all. Seems like a missed opportunity.
Since the game is a prequel to the other two titles, the story doesn't hold many twists or surprises either. 'Dramatic' moments have no meaning since you already know a certain character is/was also in the other games.
The bright side are the graphics and the atmosphere, and the large gameworld. The batcave could have been a nice addition, although in reality it doesn't really add much to the game. You can talk to Alfred and pick up a new gadget every now and then, that's it.
The fast travel option seems like a good idea, but you have to jump through so many hoops to unlock an area for fast travel that it's easier to just travel normally.
All in all this game was decent, where it could have been great.