Speaking exclusively to IGN
, Batman: Arkham City
Game Director Sefton Hill has revealed that there will be no multiplayer feature in eagerly awaited sequel. There's no way of misinterpreting Rocksteady's intentions with this statement:
There have been a number of rumors circulating about a multiplayer mode in Batman: Arkham City so let me start by saying, once and for all, that Batman: Arkham City is a "single-player only" experience.
Hill qualified the teams decision by inferring that the decision to include a multiplayer element would have detracted from the quality of the core of the title's experience:
...when we investigated adding multiplayer we asked, "If we use all of the energy that is required to create multiplayer and instead focus this on the single player, would that deliver a better overall game?"
With the game now coming to the final stages, I can honestly say it would not have been possible to deliver Arkham City the way we wanted to if we'd have added multiplayer.
Hill added that multiplayer experiences may be 'fashionable', but with Batman: Arkham City
in its near finalised state, the team are 'convinced' they have taken the right decision.
The interview conducted with IGN also touched upon the massive Easter Egg in Batman: Arkham Asylum (Xbox 360)
, which dropped a massive hint to the location and likelihood of a sequel. "I wasn't sure anyone would ever find it", Hill admitted.
It was also noted that consideration and planning for the sequel began "around the start of 2009", and in the months to follow, the development team gradually shifted focus from supporting Batman: Arkham Asylum
to the sequel. The interview also revealed that the fantastic praise heaped upon first game made developing an evolved sequel more difficult:
Honestly, the biggest message we received from people was, "keep doing what you're doing," which was great. I suppose in some respects the fact that there wasn't a single piece of unified feedback where everyone said "please add this one thing" was a testament to the first game, but it did make designing the sequel more challenging.
Though The Joker returns, Rocksteady have managed to up the stakes for Bruce Wayne this time around with inclusion of Hugo Strange. His presence within Arkham City
will deliver extra tension, as he knows who the man behind the mask is. "Batman is vulnerable and exposed in a way that he has never been before", explains Hill. Thankfully, players unfamilar with the character are assured this won't pose a problem for them:
... don't worry if you've never even heard of Hugo Strange. Arkham City tells the story of the first time Batman has crossed swords with Strange, so you will know a lot more about him by the end of the evening.
The other exciting character inclusion in the game is that of Catwoman. By now most of us were aware of this fact, but the interview divulged details on why it was felt her inclusion in the game was important:
Catwoman, always following her own agenda, is someone who really spices things up for [Batman]. She's independent, strong minded and not aligned with any of the existing super-criminals who are already inside. Batman's presence in Arkham City presents a very interesting dilemma for them both, not only because they have so much history, but also because they are both in an incredibly hostile environment with nowhere to hide in the middle of a brutal turf-war.
In summing up, the interview asked how the success of Arkham Aslyum
, and the expectations that brings, was influencing development. Quite simply, "It really is bloody terrifying". However, we're allowed to get quite excited at the prospect of Rocksteady Studios attempting to take on "technical and gameplay challenges we wouldn't have dreamt of attempting beforehand".Batman: Arkham City
will be with us in Q3 2011. More news on the same Batchannel as it arrives.