Goon Review: Batman: The Telltale Series – Episode 5: City of Light

(Presenting the epic conclusion of Mr. Andrew Peters learned take on Telltale’s Batman…Gracious gratitude, your Goon-y Greatness. 😉 xoxo)

Well, here we are. As they say, all good things must come to an end and that they do in the final episode of Telltale’s Batman. Along this journey, we’ve had some ups and we’ve had some downs, but for the most part I would say most of them were up. The game has been really enjoyable and the story has been engaging and capturing of my attention, so it’s kind of bittersweet that this is the final chapter in the saga. For now, anyway. I look back fondly at the series and I think Telltale has done such an amazing job telling a different kind of Batman story, basing it early in his, erm, career (?).

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The choices for Batman haven’t been easy and being that this is the last chapter in this series, I can’t imagine they are going to get any easier. Some of the choices I have been given has caused me great panic and if I haven’t seen the consequences of some of them, I am sure to by now (unless they are holding out to have a choice pay off in the second season). I’m actually excited to see how the series wraps up based on the decisions I made. I already can’t help but feel I made the wrong decisions on some of the choices and that’s all part of the experience; there really isn’t a right or wrong unless you view it that way. Everything you do merely shapes the story, so hopefully you are making the story that you want to play.

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Okay, so we have a few loose ends to tie up, one being of that little shit weasel Oswald Cobblepot who is holed up in Cobblepot Park with some drones trying to lure out the Batman. For starters, I’m pretty sure by now everyone, including the police, are aware that Oswald Cobblepot is the Penguin, so why don’t they just seize his assets? Wayne Enterprises could immediately fire him as CEO and he would have no money or anything instantly, but hey, what do I know. I’m no billionaire like Bruce Wayne who decides (based on my decision, actually) to confront the turd, seeing as how Bruce no longer has any properly functioning tech. Guess he really should have thought about integrating everything into his computer or at least have had a fail safe incase somewhere were to ever break into it. Major oversight for the world’s greatest detective, but I digress. Bruce is only acting as a distraction so that Gordon can destroy the signal that controls the drones and then it’s off to the iron bar hotel for the Penguin.

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I get the feeling things aren’t quite over between Oswald and Bruce, especially seeing that he will remember the final thing you say to him, but we will have to wait and see if he returns for the second season. Speaking of returning – or to be determined, rather – is Catwoman. Trying to flee Gotham on a stolen Wayne Tech prototype bike (almost like she wants to be tracked), Bruce tracks her down to tell her his real feelings, which you can choose to lie about, but how could I? I let Selina know how I, as Bruce, really felt in hopes of it making a big effect on the second season. As far as I know, there is nothing you can do to prevent her from leaving, but it was interesting to see how everything Selina and I had went through played out and to see the results. I think for the most part I was happy with the choices and I can’t wait to see her again, but for now, we still have the matter of Lady Arkham, aka Vicki Vale, who appears to have broken into Wayne Manor and kidnapped Alfred.

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This cue’s the final detective sequences of the game, as you have to piece together the crime scene left behind. A room is destroyed, blood is sprawled across the room… just who in the hell is gonna clean up this mess? If only Bruce still had a butler… Luckily, Alfred is one tough old bastard and leaves subtle clues behind using his blood to let Bruce know where he was taken. As you’re completing these puzzles, you really feel some dread as Telltale tend to be a little unpredictable, so there were moments where I wasn’t sure whether or not Alfred would be alive. Once you solve the first batch of clues, Lucius Fox shows up and gives you access to an older suit seeing as how you have regained access to the Bat-computer, so now we can focus and solve more clues to find the whereabout of Alfred, who has left some rather clever hints that I found to be really fun. Once solved, you not only find the whereabout of Alfred, but you also learn about Vicki’s tortured past to which Bruce does share a connection with and how she turned out the way she did. This also justifies, in a way, her parents’ murder.

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Tracking her down to Arkham Asylum, Batman finds the place has been overtaken by the Children of Arkham, which was no surprise to me. I didn’t exactly expect to waltz in there and nab Vicki. First you gotta go through waves of thugs until you finally reach Vicki for a final showdown. Of course, she begins the fight with the upper hand, threatening to kill Alfred and you are left with a possible major choice to make; whether or not to reveal or identity to her. I chose to reveal myself as Bruce Wayne to her, because even against Alfred’s wishes, Bruce would have done so to save his friend. Plus, we all know that bitch is gonna die at the end of this episode… or will she? That’s the thing about these Telltale games. You’ll just have to wait until the next season to find out! Finally, you are left with one more decision, to visit Gordon as Batman or Bruce Wayne. I chose Bruce, because I felt this was more his story and he needed to publicly clear his name, which he does. All seems well, but we can’t end out the episode until we’ve had a little stinger that shows a familiar face, John Doe, watching him on TV at a bar and remarking that he needs to pay Bruce a visit for his favor that is owed.

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In the end, I thought this was a rather solid Batman story, even if it did take me about halfway through to come around to some elements, like the angle of the Penguin. You get so use to him as a chubby short guy with mob ties, you fail to see him any other way, but the way Oswald is presented in this story makes total sense. There were also some surprises along the way that even caught me off guard, like Carmine Falcone getting plugged! Didn’t see that coming, but it was (again) done in a way that made sense to the story and didn’t feel shoehorned in for violence. Even though I feel Batman was more of a passenger during this ride, I moreso enjoyed the Bruce Wayne parts of the game. Telltale did a fantastic job developing his character, especially his relationships with Selina and Harvey. Speaking of those two, the game offers at least another playthrough to see how your relationships would change with either or both of them depending on the choices you have made. The only real drawback I can actually complain about is that from time to time the detective segments felt a little too drawn out and I felt forced to finish them just to move to story along. This was a little torturous, because if I was bored by them the first time around, I sure as hell am not gonna want to sit through them a second time. It’s not a terrible thing, but hopefully in the second season these will be approved upon. There were also a few technical bugs, like entire persons missing and nothing but their teeth and eyes left behind floating in the air, but it wasn’t game crashing or anything like that. Just removed me from the game mentally as I had a good chuckle.

With a wonderful cast that brought these characters to life and actually made you care about them and excited to see where they were going, I can’t wait to see what Telltale brings in the second season.

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  • I also just realized blood shoots out of the guy’s nose at the end before he’s elbowed.