Batman - The Telltale Series Episode 1

Batman - The Telltale Series Episode 1
 
 

It’s safe to say Telltale have found their calling in revitalising the adventure genre, though at times it does feel like they’re just applying the winning formula to whatever license can be attained - perhaps only to sustain their own existence. But I won’t look a bat-car under the bonnet, not when Telltale’s games are quite good. Rapid breeding notwithstanding. I’m a little surprised Batman wasn’t attempted sooner. His double life, detective skills, and face-pounding prowess are aptly suited for the developer’s style.

There is no Batman without Bruce Wayne. Much of this episode covers the tuxedo life of the billionaire playboy philanthropist, the restlessness of his business responsibilities, and the effort it takes to support his rooftop adventures. There aren’t any major league villains as of yet, just a more grounded war with Catwoman and the crime-lord Carmine Falcone. Most of the decisions thus far seem to be gearing the player toward a more restrained Batman, or a more brutal one.

 
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The Telltale formula shines most during Batman’s sequences. The investigatory item sections mould naturally to what are now crime-scene deductions like those of the Arkham games. Each piece of evidence has a corresponding sibling you must physically make a connection with to progress. Far from being difficult, but they’re also not spoon-fed.

The investigative moments will be at their best when they’re at their toughest. Not only for the sake of challenge, but so we feel like Batman - something the quick-time events have nailed down. They’re quick. Really quick. Much quicker than previous games, and much more choreographed. There wasn’t any penalty when I failed – prrobably for seamlessness and the whole “you’re meant to be Batman” thing – but every time I enjoyed the chance to test myself.

So Telltale have actually adapted their brand of adventure gameplay to Batman. You won’t always be thinking about your next conversation quip; you’ll be sitting in the bat-cave doing Batman things, reading dossiers, news articles and intel at your leisure. Complete with Alred’s avuncular remarks and repartee.

This made the game feel longer than I recall Telltale episodes being. Expecting the game to cut me off on a cliffhanger - it kept going - even to a mini-conclusion. Structured like a small season inside one episode, all the while planting suspicions of what’s to come.

Something I’ve always wanted to do is gather friends ‘round while they watch me have fun playing Telltale games. Maybe they could even chime in on decisions, and maybe I could not listen to them, but you can actually do this functionally now with crowd-play. From afar or nearby using almost any device, people can vote on your next choice. Either you’ll get the results to inform your choice, or the game will automatically implement the most popular one.

If Telltale are going to tell a Batman story their way, they must make us feel like Batman. That’s a hard thing to do, because Batman needs to be in control, and giving players options with a character so stubbornly resolute is risky. But Telltale have smartly stayed within the confines of what Bruce Wayne/Batman would do anyway. It’s a clever story full of puns and allusions, and a reassuring start from a studio who were in danger of stagnating.


Batman - The Telltale Series
"The game that finally convinced me to get a Telltale account."
- Batman - The Telltale Series
9.0
Excellent
 
Follow Own it? Rating: R16   Difficulty: Medium   Learning Curve: 30 Min


 

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Comments Comments (17)

 
Posted by birdman
On Tuesday 9 Aug 2016 12:18 PM
1
Sounds excellent, I think I'll pick this up once I can clear out a couple of backlogged games off my system - TTR I'm looking at you!
 
 
 
Posted by Ryzlin
On Tuesday 9 Aug 2016 12:26 PM
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I'm glad you liked it. I do really like TT games, but I do tend to pick and choose the franchises I like rather than playing them all. This one certainly sparked my interest. I'll wait for the whole season to come out first though because Wolf Among Us taught me that I'm terrible at waiting for episodic games.
 
 
 
Posted by LukeB
On Tuesday 9 Aug 2016 12:47 PM
3
I glad the series is looking to be a good tale, can't wait to get my hands on it.... speaking of which, I'm legitimately disappointed in Xbox New Zealand in not getting the Xbox One version up on our store... very disappointing :(
 
 
 
oconnomiyaki
Posted by oconnomiyaki
On Tuesday 9 Aug 2016 1:04 PM
1
9 August 2016, 12:47 PM Reply to LukeB
I glad the series is looking to be a good tale, can't wait to get my hands on it.... speaking of which, I'm legitimately disappointed in Xbox New Zealand in not getting the Xbox One version up on our store... very disappointing :(
Yeah, what the hell is going on with that? The radio silence from them on the issue is rather disconcerting. Song of the Deep is missing too, and it seems more and more games don't appear on the Xbox Store. Solus Project is another one that isn't there. And often, you'll notice the games are released on the PlayStation Store. Sometimes it's not even about the ratings, and that's the case with Batman.

As someone who just bought a new Xbox One S, if this is a trend that continues and Xbox NZ don't say something about it then I might start living to regret that decision...
 
 
 
Posted by SpawnSeekSlay
On Tuesday 9 Aug 2016 1:04 PM
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Ive generally enjoyed all the TT games ive played, WD1, WD2, Borderlands. But I think this peaks my interest more than the others, Ill wait for the full season though.
 
 
 
Posted by Jono91
On Tuesday 9 Aug 2016 3:33 PM
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9 August 2016, 12:26 PM Reply to Ryzlin
I'm glad you liked it. I do really like TT games, but I do tend to pick and choose the franchises I like rather than playing them all. This one certainly sparked my interest. I'll wait for the whole season to come out first though because Wolf Among Us taught me that I'm terrible at waiting for episodic games.
I can appreciate what you're saying regarding waiting until all episodes have released! I've just played through the first episode.... my first ever TT game/episode.... I now have to wait for Ep2 to release......the wait will be torture!
Aside from that, I'm a massive Batman fan, and if this first episode is anything to go by, it should be a fantastic ride!
 
 
 
Posted by Ryzlin
On Tuesday 9 Aug 2016 4:32 PM
1
9 August 2016, 03:33 PM Reply to Jono91
I can appreciate what you're saying regarding waiting until all episodes have released! I've just played through the first episode.... my first ever TT game/episode.... I now have to wait for Ep2 to release......the wait will be torture!
Aside from that, I'm a massive Batman fan, and if this first episode is anything to go by, it should be a fantastic ride!
I'm a big fan of the Batman universe but can give or take Bats depending on how he is written. I'm the horrible person who tried to end Arkham City by leaving Batman to die and Catwoman leaving with the treasure.

Gods strength sir, and may you survive the wait between episodes!
 
 
 
Posted by kiwiatlarge
On Tuesday 9 Aug 2016 7:17 PM
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9 August 2016, 12:26 PM Reply to Ryzlin
I'm glad you liked it. I do really like TT games, but I do tend to pick and choose the franchises I like rather than playing them all. This one certainly sparked my interest. I'll wait for the whole season to come out first though because Wolf Among Us taught me that I'm terrible at waiting for episodic games.
Yeah, they've become very much like Lego games now. Sure you could play all of them and get some easy trophies, but they are too samey for me to play all of them.. I just pick what interests me now.

The Walking Dead started it all for me and I'll probably play all of them because I'm so far in. The Wolf Among Us was curiosity because it was the first game I tried that wasn't TWD. But, I have no interest in Game of Thrones, so thus no interest in that game.

Tales from Borderlands is my favourite, not only because I love the games, but the characters and story kept me glued, and I particularly loved the way they integrated the feel of the weapon dropping and upgrading of the fps games into it. It was very 'easter-eggy' the way if that makes sense..
 
 
 
Posted by CoffeeAddict
On Tuesday 9 Aug 2016 7:44 PM
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I really hope that the decisions have significant outcomes in the latter episodes. I really liked it, decent mood with a good detective mode.
 
 
 
Posted by Nick2016NZ
On Tuesday 9 Aug 2016 8:03 PM
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How does it run performance wise? I've read that it has framerate problems and stuttering on both the PS4 and PC versions, this is actually what's making me hold off on it. Would be good to know if what I've read is true or just exaggerated.
 
 
 
Posted by Benny
On Tuesday 9 Aug 2016 9:14 PM
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9 August 2016, 08:03 PM Reply to Nick2016NZ
How does it run performance wise? I've read that it has framerate problems and stuttering on both the PS4 and PC versions, this is actually what's making me hold off on it. Would be good to know if what I've read is true or just exaggerated.
Barely occurred. Only happened with one scene, and that was only for 10 seconds. Not anything worth mentioned.
 
 
 
Posted by Ryzlin
On Wednesday 10 Aug 2016 5:24 PM
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9 August 2016, 07:17 PM Reply to kiwiatlarge
Yeah, they've become very much like Lego games now. Sure you could play all of them and get some easy trophies, but they are too samey for me to play all of them.. I just pick what interests me now.

The Walking Dead started it all for me and I'll probably play all of them because I'm so far in. The Wolf Among Us was curiosity because it was the first game I tried that wasn't TWD. But, I have no interest in Game of Thrones, so thus no interest in that game.

Tales from Borderlands is my favourite, not only because I love the games, but the characters and story kept me glued, and I particularly loved the way they integrated the feel of the weapon dropping and upgrading of the fps games into it. It was very 'easter-eggy' the way if that makes sense..
Yeah, it is like the Lego games. I fell in love with TWAU because I'm a fairy tale nerd. I haven't gotten around to Borderlands yet, but I might bump it up my play list after seeing how much you like it.
 
 
 
Posted by Coddfish
On Thursday 11 Aug 2016 8:26 AM
2
10 August 2016, 05:24 PM Reply to Ryzlin
Yeah, it is like the Lego games. I fell in love with TWAU because I'm a fairy tale nerd. I haven't gotten around to Borderlands yet, but I might bump it up my play list after seeing how much you like it.
Tales from the Borderlands is the best they've done since The Walking Dead S1. It is very important that you play it as soon as possible.
 
 
 
Posted by CoffeeAddict
On Thursday 11 Aug 2016 9:03 AM
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11 August 2016, 08:26 AM Reply to Coddfish
Tales from the Borderlands is the best they've done since The Walking Dead S1. It is very important that you play it as soon as possible.
I concur to this sentiment, the game is the balls.
 
 
 
Posted by Ryzlin
On Thursday 11 Aug 2016 11:48 AM
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11 August 2016, 08:26 AM Reply to Coddfish
Tales from the Borderlands is the best they've done since The Walking Dead S1. It is very important that you play it as soon as possible.
I'm going to shock you even more and say I think I actually already have it on PC... As soon as my latest assignment is done it may be getting a workout.
 
 
 
Posted by birdman
On Thursday 11 Aug 2016 1:45 PM
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9 August 2016, 01:04 PM Reply to SpawnSeekSlay
Ive generally enjoyed all the TT games ive played, WD1, WD2, Borderlands. But I think this peaks my interest more than the others, Ill wait for the full season though.
Good call mate, the complete or GOTY edition would be the way to go, or wait for the PS+ freebie lol...
 
 
 
khanghi
Posted by khanghi
On Tuesday 23 Aug 2016 6:41 PM
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This is such a nice post about games. I very much like to play different kind of games online. Generally most of people want to play online games which is very much interesting for everyone.