Same Bat-Choices, New Bat-Channel: Telltale’s Batman

Telltale are making a Batman game. Take a trip to Crime Alley and other Gotham hotspots in the brief teaser below.

I really really really really really really really hope that 90% of the game has me playing as Bruce Wayne, trying to pick the most obnoxious behaviours possible so as to maintain my cover as the world’s shittiest billionaire playboy. If there’s any justice in the world, I’ll be able to take things too far and end up so hungover and bloated with vol-au-vents after a prolonged brunch at the mayor’s mansion that I’ll sleep through the Joker’s diabolical plot to make the entire city giggle itself to death.

“THOMAS WAYNE WILL REMEMBER THIS”, the game will say, judging me, as cartoon citizens lie grinning in the streets. As Bruce belches merrily in his sleep, I’ll be sad for the city but glad that the cycle of violence has ended. And Thomas won’t remember a damn thing – he’s dead and young master Wayne is going to have to accept that his caped crusade isn’t impressing any ghosts.

Telltale have already come dangerously close to crossing the comic book universe streams. When they announced that they’d be teaming up with Marvel, they were already intimately involved with Fables, a DC property. That Fables exists in DC’s Vertigo imprint, outside the main cluster of capes and confused continuity, made the urban fairytale noir seem like an independent project though. Superman was unlikely to show up.

Obviously there’s no Telltale shared universe (yet; Poker Night at the Inventory aside) so Batman’s not going to be signing up with The Avengers just yet, but it does seem a bit greedy to have both major comic brands under one roof. Traveller’s Tales have been doing the same thing with their Lego games – something about the word ‘Tale’ attracts major licenses, clearly.

Normally I wouldn’t give a hoot about voice casting announcements, but I’ll be waiting to hear who’s on board for Batman. I do like some Kevin Conroy in my ears from time to time.

Batman, which will be an episodic series, begins next year. Telltale’s announcement does suggest the Bruce Wayne side of the story will be central, which is good. All joking aside, I’m far more interested in the decisions that go toward maintaining a weird double life than I am in choosing whether to punch Riddler in the face or in the crotch.

33 Comments

  1. Premium User Badge

    Aerothorn says:

    I really hope future Telltale games are different…games.

    I don’t much like The Walking Dead, but that has to do with storytelling rather than structural reasons; I’m fine with the story-heavy, choice-and-maybe-consequences model (as long as they let me turn off the immersion-breaking notifications – Walking Dead did, Fables didn’t, I’m not sure what the norm is now?). But Telltale has a lot of people in it and it seems like they should try to make different games for different stories. There’s probably something out there that deserves to be an outright point-and-click adventure.

    Is this just a mobile thing – that this system is easy to port to every platform imaginable, and anything with more mechanical complexity wouldn’t be? Is it a “brand” thing?

  2. Jason Moyer says:

    If even Telltale are making a dark, goffy batman game, I guess there’s no chance to get a decent Adam West or Silver Age game. Boo.

    • mukuste says:

      Even Telltale? The Walking Dead and Wolfamungous, their previous comic-based outings, were pretty dark, so it’s not that surprising they’re continuing in that vein.

      That said, I’m all for more biffing and powing.

    • RedViv says:

      Telltale presents:
      A Tale of Two Bats

      Kevin Conroy as Batman
      Adam West as Batman

      A girl can dream.

    • Turkey says:

      I so wish the rumors that Rocksteady were developing a silver-age Batman game had been true.

  3. theblazeuk says:

    If it ain’t Conroy, I ain’t buyin.

    • HidingCat says:

      Please let it be Conroy, please let it be Conroy!

      • Premium User Badge

        DuncUK says:

        As someone whose introduction to the comic-book Bat universe was largely through the WB games (and I’ve since delved headlong into the comics), I don’t really understand the obsession with Conroy’s vocal performance. Don’t get me wrong, it’s perfectly servicable… but a rather generic, standard ‘holier than thou tough-guy’ charisma vacuum? If anything, it only serves to exacerbate the weakness central to the Batman canon, that of the slight one-dimensionality of Batman himself. I’m not trying to troll, I just want to understand what it is I’m missing.

        Mark Hamill on the other hand, now that’s a performance to get excited about.

        • cshralla says:

          Isn’t it bloody obious you should watch Batman The Animated Series and Batman Beyond. You’re pretty much saying “what’s the big deal with Christopher Lee? I just saw him in the Star Wars prequels and I don’t see whats so great about him.”

  4. ribby says:

    We’ll see… Telltale are capable of great things, but they’re also capable of fairly mediocre things.

  5. skyturnedred says:

    I really hope they don’t keep recycling the same art style. It’s getting a bit old.

    • Premium User Badge

      DuncUK says:

      Me too, although I think that art style is a big indication of the limits of their talent and manpower.

      • colossalstrikepackage says:

        I don’t mind it so much. And you could argue it’s their signature style. I’m more concerned about the story and wish they’d get rid of QTEs altogether. I get it – I’m meant to panic. But it shouldn’t be about pressing the right effing button.

  6. Risingson says:

    Telltale have not done any good thing since they decided to dumb down the narrative and the games. I still do not understand how can you seriously praise “The Walking Dead”, a game so dumbly obvious that it has a little girl for dramatic effect.

    Yes, give me some hours, weekend will be in, and all my hate will be tempered.

    • Old Rusty Dusty says:

      It’s not a game, it’s an interactive TV show. Treat it like that and it’s a fantastic way to tell a story. It’s light years ahead of the AMC show in terms of narrative and writing.

  7. Brosecutor says:

    “Alfred will remember that.”

    • colossalstrikepackage says:

      “The Riddler’s crotch will remember that”

  8. elderman says:

    If only they would make a Linux build. This is something I think I could get my partner interested in.

  9. Phantom_Renegade says:

    Tales From the Borderlands and Wolf were amazing. Walking Dead and Game of Thrones were pure shit. (I’ll make allowances for the Asher bits before he got to Westeros which were fun.)

    The grimdarker TellTale gets the more their games are bad.

    The usual disclaimers should apply as well, buying a season pass is only slightly less stupid then pre-ordering. As for being Batman, we’ve already got 2 and a half solid games for that, so this should focus on Bruce Wayne and I’m not convinced he’s interesting enough to build a game around.

    If this turns out to be fun like the Flash has been on TV (Which could be pretty dark at times) I’ll buy the crap out of this though.

    • Zankman says:

      “Popular and well-received series is pure shit” – Edgy Kid

    • colossalstrikepackage says:

      The Flash is pure crap.

      Drops mike. Walks away.

    • Jason Lefkowitz says:

      I wanted to like Tales from the Borderlands, but as I played through the first couple of episodes I kept failing to find any actual game in it. It was just dialogue choice / dialogue choice / quick-time event / dialogue choice. It didn’t feel like an adventure game so much as it did a pop quiz.

      I liked their earlier Sam & Max games a lot, so I was disappointed to find their most well-reviewed modern effort to be so fluffy.

      • ribby says:

        But it’s entertaining…

      • Old Rusty Dusty says:

        You’re missing the point of modern Telltale games – They aren’t games at all, but rather interactive TV shows. Personally I love the medium, and the ability to have some impact on the Storyline as it goes along making difficult choices. I’ve watched a lot of newer and older TV shows, and honestly Telltale does a better job at creating a narrative and writing interesting characters than much of the stuff that’s out there today. Try watching the Walking Dead TV show, and seriously make an argument that the writing and story is better than the Telltale games… it’s not even close even though AMC has a huge budget for writing and actors.

      • death_au says:

        I’m really really hoping Telltale will go back to some of their actual point-and-click adventure stuff for this, bringing some actual detective work back to the “World’s Greatest Detective”. I don’t just want to make decisions, I want to actually work some stuff out for myself, too.

  10. RedViv says:

    I’m not surprised that they pick these devs. If there is one thing about comics that still remains true, it’s that they love the TT.

  11. rustybroomhandle says:

    Press X to bat.

  12. ooshp says:

    I did like TWD and Woofwoof, but I feel Dontnod outdid them with Life is Strange. It made me feel like an emotionally confused teenager again, which I usually need illegal substances for.