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Batman Arkham Origins - A Review


By SeanmcR6 - Posted on 26 October 2013

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RIGHT! Let me start off by saying this is a PC review...a STEAM PC Game review. Let me explain WHY I'm reviewing a PC game on Steam.

Since my last PC built (designed for heavy photoshop and video editing work) was a little light on the graphics card side, I recently bought a new card. A GTX 770 4GB. A monster. So along with my SSD HD, i7 990x CPU and 24GB RAM, I thought I was in pretty good shape to see a new game in it's full glory. The GTX770 came with a free copy of Batman Arkham Origins. I was looking forward to seeing this game in full resolution. The day it came was a happy day.

That, is when the happy stopped. First, there was no CD/DVD...it's a coupon for a Steam game. SIGH. Whatever, it's a free game right?!

Not released until the 25th. Really? I have to wait two weeks. SIGH. Whatever, it's a free game right?!

It's a 26GB download!! Are you kidding me? An entire season of Buffy in HD isn't 26GB. All 3 Star Wars movies on BluRay aren't 26GB. Jesus. Whatever, it's a free game right?!

4 hours later, ok, let's get started. First I turn every single graphics parameter to MAX. Everything. Now let's see what it looks like.

It looks good...Like REALLY good. It's incredible just how gorgeous it is with everything turned up to MAX. WOW. Impressed.

Audio, great. Effects, great. Something about turning on the PhysX engine and watching exhaust from building vents swirls around you as you walk past. Like I said gorgeous!! A funny thing? The real time game play was so nice, it made the pre-rendered cut scenes look like crap. It was jarring just how bad the resolution drop was. This is, after all, why PC gamers are amendment that it's the best way to game. All the horsepower. This isn't my screengrab (cause it wouldn't let me) but this is really what this guy looks like "in engine" when you've got the power to do it! Amazing eh. Love this card :) (and it's killing my render times in After Effect!)

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I really like the free flow fighting style of the Batman games. They're not button mashers. You need to be patient and time your actions, but it doesn't feel clunky. It's a great system. It's identical in this game, except I'm on a PC...with a f**king keyboard. How did I EVER play games like this. It's like the short bus of game controllers. Doesn't matter how hard it tries, it'll always be a little "off". I was tempted to go to the store to buy a 360 controller for Windows...but really, buy a $60 controller for a free game. The Scottish in me won't allow it.

Ok, this is an Origins games...taking place BEFORE the last two games, yet somehow he's got all the toys already. Whatever, it's a free game and I like toys. Let's go.

Then...THUD. The wheels fall off. Batman smells and robin (if there is one in this game) most definitely laid a huge turd of an egg.

Ok, so the story is a little ridiculous. The dialogue is weak and corny (even for batman) Not the voice actors, they're top notch. The scripted dialogue is just really lame in some parts.

I'm playing on Normal and I've finished the first major boss. I found the average baddie to be fairly easy to dispense with, but the first Major boss took me 5 tries and just over a half hour. Of screaming. And swearing. And screaming. Like ridiculous, just...ridiculous. In the end, it's nice to have HARD boss battles, but man, the contrast from regular game play just made it frustrating. If that's your thing, you'll love it. I'm still on the fence.

And now...for the worst part. This game, on a PC, bought and DLed from Steam....is the buggiest POS I've ever played. It's so bad, I don't think I'll even bother to continue to play it. I'm 5 hours in (not including DL) and I have no desire to play THIS game anymore.

After the first hour, I got stuck on a piece of ice while grapple hook pulling myself across some water....I couldn't get off at the other side. After 10 minutes of searching for another solution, I turned to the forums. Ah. BUG.

After beating the first boss, with tears streaming down my face, I couldn't leave the room. The door made the sound like it was opening, but it wouldn't open and I couldn't go anywhere. Another 20 minutes. Another BUG. Quit and restart. SIGH.

Alright, whatever...next "mission" to advance the story. I'm in a room, trap locks me in and I have to use the hookshot to pull a grate off. Grapple up to the vent and I'm stuck. Won't let me climb in. I'm just hanging there on the side of the wall. In the rendering, my hands are half inside the cement. I can drop down, but every time I try to grapple up. Stuck. For the love of... Now, I tried quitting and restarting 3 times. No different. Check the forums, yep BUG. BIG F**KING BUG.

I'm out. I've only been playing the game for 5 hours and I've had to restart my game over a dozen times and been forced to turn to the internet just to make sure I'm missing something (it happens). Crazy. The forums are full of reports of critical BUGS that cease you're gameplay entirely. These aren't simple rendering niggles or clipping errors, they're devastating, major BUGS. Good job Montreal. Mange la merde.

From what I've experienced, it looks like exactly the other two Batman games, only with less story and more boring excursions on the streets. It was pretty, sounded great, but yeah...too many critical bugs. Tried to take some screenshots...but they're doing something funky and I couldn't do them. Weird right? So then I hooked up my HDMI capture card and tried to capture footage, but that just gave me errors. WTF? Why sabotage still/video capture on the PC when you can do it easily on the PS3/360? If they(or Steam) are doing that, it makes no sense.

I'll probably pick this game up for 360 when it goes on sale, but I'm done with this Steam version. Plus, taking up 30GB on my 240GB OS drive is too much, so I'm going to delete it. Oh well, it's a free game right?!

I give this "STEAM" game for the PC a 2 out of 5.

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Q-Bert's picture

I had also just built a gaming PC and had installed Steam. Batman Arkham Origins is on special on Steam and I had been itching to purchase it. Now I know better.

Back to retro-gaming with Homeworld.

SeanmcR6's picture

Hints get stuck prompting users to press the same button.
Some Exotic takedowns not registering correctly.
No autosave during Fast Travel.
Some buildings can be grappled onto but unable to clib
Glide kick doesn't engage while gliding.
Batman seizures while gliding, alternating between landing animation and gliding animation.
Some enemies refuse to engage.
Batman becomes invulnerable after fast traveling from Batcave
Collision issues
-First encounter with Firefly henchmen outside the bottom of the bridge, henchman slides into a closed door.
-Deadshot Museum fight, Deadshot rolls inside the stairs making him unreachable.
Fast travel detection, sometimes it registers as indoors even when outside.
Prompts don't respond when aquiring new gadgets, leaving you staring at your gadget.
Sceene loops when entering the batcave.

[CRASHES/FREEZES]
Crash on startup, game will not load.
Black screen during cinematics.
Black Screen during Killer Croc's fight.
Freeze during Bane's fight.
Exiting the Final Offer
Exiting Penguin's Arena.
-The two doors leading out will not open, despite prompting you to open them.
Muted Audio
-At certain points, mostly after a cinematic, audio will be completely muted.
Inconsistent audio
- Audio turns on and off sporadically for minutes at a time.
- Dialogue is also affected
Faulty event/audio triggers
-Lacey tower's investigation audio triggered by approaching Lacey Towers.
Subtitle settings.
-Will not disable even after disabling them in the options screen.
+Setting subtitles on/off before starting/continuing your game may solve this issue.
Detective mode will not let you scan, it instead shuts down to regular view.
Bowery communication tower.
-Enigma video will not play after hacking the tower.
Freeflow Focus will not unlock despite meeting the requirements.
Batclaw will not disengage.
-During the Penguin's Final Offer mission, on the raft.
*Try pressing the crouch key.
Missing map markers/waypoints.
-Lacey Towers waypoint after exiting the Final Offer.
Invisible Enemies
-During Killer Croc's first encounter.
-During Deathstroke's fight.
Clip out of map and fall into an infinite plunge into darkness.
-When continuing in Royal Hotel.
-Before the steam pipes outside and above Penguin's Arena, reached by crouching and moving forward into the wall.
-After finding the disruptor and using the door.
Game's process won't shut down after exiting the game
Controller promptsalternating between Keyboard icons and Gamepad icons.
GCPD Elevator shaft.
-Possible to go down the shaft after rescuing Gordon, leaving the players stuck.
Freezing while saving leads to save being wiped out.
Raft on Mad Hatter's wonderland prone to getting stuck.
Crash after the "Loose Lips" arms dealer cinematic.
Freeze while Fast-traveling to the Batcave
Enabling PhysX causes more crashes
While "checking for content" due to resolution issues on GFXSettings.BatmanArkhamOrigins.xml
Restarting checkpoint after meeting Joker.
Crash on elevator with grinning manager after copperhead encounter.

[PERFORMANCE]
Stutter/lag in cutscenes.
FPS drops in Blackgate Prison.
Xbox controller is unresponsive at times.
Unresponsive camera during fights.
PhysX not performing properly.
Mouse not responding during fights.
DVD install still requires a 9GB download.
Game does not save/autosave

Coxxorz's picture

The Microsoft Xbox 360 controller for Windows is just $30 at Wal Mart. And it's a real Xbox controller, so you can use it on your console too, when you buy the Xbox version of the game.

Blackwalt's picture

You really only need the USB wireless adapter but you can have the entire package if you want it.

It has been in storage since I bought it under a Coxxorz deal of the week.

Let me know. I can pull it out of storage for next time you are here or I could even get organized to mail it out to Fort McMurray.

SeanmcR6's picture

you can buy just the wireless part? I have 4 controllers...really don't want/need another one! lol

I don't know...I'm pretty much done with PC gaming. I built this machine for video editing and effects work, just thought it might be nice to play games once and a while...but I'm REALLY not digging Steam at all.

Thanks for the offer Blackwalt

Coxxorz's picture

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