When it comes to the depiction of Batman, the interpretations can be as varied as the villains he faces. Between WB Games Montreal’s Gotham Knights and Rocksteady’s Arkham series, the differences are more than skin-deep. Let’s delve into how these two renditions of the Dark Knight compare, looking at character depth, emotionality, and the relationships with the Bat Family.
The Arkham series and Gotham Knights offer two unique takes on the caped crusader. Fans were widely disappointed with Gotham Knights due to lacking a playable Batman and an underwhelming narrative. On the other hand, WB Games Montreal has always portrayed Batman as an emotionally rich and comprehensive character, contrasting the cold and stoic nature of Rocksteady’s Batman.
One significant difference lies in the way Batman treats his companions. While Gotham Knights’ Batman fully respects and protects his Bat Family, Arkhamverse’s Batman often comes off as unempathetic. This divergence becomes especially evident in the handling of Jason Todd’s storyline, where Rocksteady’s interpretation arguably feels like a retcon.
Looking back at the launch of Gotham Knights, fans had little patience for an action-RPG DC game where Batman wasn’t playable and the villains were sparse. However, WB Games Montreal’s mindful approach to Batman’s portrayal has been commendable. Even in Batman: Arkham Origins, the prequel to the Arkham series, Batman is portrayed as a robust character, rounding out Rocksteady’s interpretation.
WB Games Montreal Understands Batman’s Emotionality Better Than Rocksteady
WB Games Montreal’s Batman stands out for cherishing companions, unlike Rocksteady’s version, who always seems to push loved ones away. The latter’s penchant for belittling antagonists and showing cold exterior towards Bat Family companions seems unjustified. In contrast, Gotham Knights presents Batman as someone able to respect and adore his Bat Family.
One of Rocksteady’s controversial decisions was neglecting how each sidekick was recruited. This led to a lack of empathy from Batman, except towards Oracle in Asylum. The inclusion of Jason Todd’s story felt like an afterthought. In contrast, Gotham Knights shows an experienced yet caring Batman who dies twice to protect his city and family. The Arkhamverse’s Batman’s “death,” on the other hand, feels selfish rather than protective.
The way Gotham Knights’ Batman differs from Arkham’s Batman is not just about the suit and gadgets; it’s about character depth, emotion, relationships, and storytelling. WB Games Montreal’s version wins praise for its emotionally connected portrayal and respect for the Bat Family. It represents a Batman who is not only a hero but a mentor and guardian, showcasing why the character has been beloved for generations. Rocksteady’s interpretation, while strong in other areas, falls short in these key aspects, offering us a unique comparison of what makes Batman truly Batman.