If there is one genre lacking from today's current Video Game market, it's the superhero genre. Ever since the conclusion of the Batman: Arkham series, superheroes have been all but absent from video games. Sure they may live on in the massive multiplayer online game - or simply MMOG - DC Universe Online and the now discontinued, toys-to-life game Disney Infinity, but we have yet to have a new story based video game based on a superhero since last June. Luckily for us, there are more then a few upcoming superhero games on the horizon, and more than certain look to be worth the wait.
1. Batman Arkham VR
Announced at this year's Sony E3 conference, Batman Arkham VR marks the return to Rocksteady's Arkham universe. Rocksteady marketed the Arkham games with the tagline "Be the Batman", now they are taking it to a whole other level. Arkham VR will let you investigate a murder all while gazing through the eyes of the Bat.
Rocksteady have released a description of the game which states
Batman: Arkham VR is an intense murder mystery in the style of the classic Batman comic books, but with a strong dose of the dark psychology that the Arkham games are well known for.
A psychological mystery VR game? Take my money Rocksteady. We have already had a taste of what Batman VR could be like with one of the series' highlights, "detective mode". If the murder mystery part holds up, then it looks like we will see a lot of the detective mode implemented into the story.
If all of this wasn't enough to get you excited for Batman VR, the trailer was narrated by Mark Hamill's Joker, what more do you want?
2. Batman: Return To Arkham
Yes, Batman makes his second appearance, and with good reason. Batman: Return To Arkham, a remaster of Arkham Asylum and Arkham City, has been heavily rumored ever since the jump to PS4 and Xbox One. Many news outlets began to speculate if the remaster was real when Xbox refused to release the two titles for backwards compatibility. The rumour became reality when Rocksteady announced that the two Game of The Year winning titles would be coming to PS4 and Xbox One with all previously released DLC with it.
The game previously suffered a setback as it was pushed from its July 26th release and is now "delayed indefinitely" to refine the games. While many are angered and disappointment by the delay, it is a smart move on Rocksteady's behalf. Arkham Knight had many issues upon release, one which rendered the game unplayable on PC, so to delay the game to refine it is a smart decision.
While the game is delayed indefinitely, I believe we should expect a holiday release date. They are just looking to refine the game, so I can't imagine the delay would last beyond 2016. So expect to be playing Return to Arkham over the Christmas period!
When will Warner Bros. Montreal announce their "super secret" superhero game as the "not so super secret" Superman game? The game has been leaked from numerous sources, and was even spoiled by a LinkdIn CV, so it is only a matter of time before the game is officially announced.
Warner Bros. Montreal have tried their best to keep the game away from the eyes of the public. Unfortunately many leaks have revealed elements of the game, and now the early hype train has started for a game that is still only in development.
The reason for this hype? It is developed by the same team that created Arkham Origins. Yes, Arkham Origins has been criticized, but that mainly lies with the inclusion of Joker, not the gameplay. The gameplay, if anything, has been perceived as the better of the last-gen Arkham series games.
A Superman game that improves on the gameplay of Arkham Origins, stars Brainiac and Doomsday, and is based in the same universe as Batman? That is the recipe for a groundbreaking game.
4. Batman: A Telltale Series
The third appearance of Batman on this list, but it is well deserved. Telltale Games have a proven track record after successfully adapting popular franchises such as The Walking Dead, Borderlands and Game of Thrones. Adapting Batman for a Telltale game will prove to be a challenge, but one that they will no doubt overcome.
Batman is a character that can transition from open world to point and click very smoothly. The detective side of Batman, which the series is implementing, will fit in well with Telltale's formula of players choices affecting the game.
The game boasts an impressive voice cast, with the two greatest video game performers, Troy Baker and Laura Bailey, voicing Batman and Catwoman, respectively. The game's first episode is confirmed to be released this summer, and is due to finish at the end of 2016.
5. Spider-Man PS4
The game that everyone is talking about, Spider-Man PS4, was definitely E3's surprise announcement. No one had any idea that there was a new Spider-Man game on its way, never mind that it was being developed by Insomniac Games. Insomniac Games are best known for their work on the Xbox Game of The Year, Sunset Overdrive and the much-loved Ratchet and Clank series, so there is no doubt that the game is in good hands.
The game's trailer showcased Spider-Man's crime-fighting and web-crawling abilities while also showing the in-game rendered New York City. Everyone was soon boarding the hype train after the trailer, but it looks like they will be waiting on their destination for quite some time. Insomniac announced that the game's release date will not be announced any time soon, so expect it to be released summer 2017. Insomniac will likely shoot for this release date as it will coincide with the release of Spider-Man: Homecoming.
Sony have confirmed that the game is the beginning of their plan to develop more video games based on popular Marvel characters. Can you just imagine a Rocksteady-esque game based on Daredevil or Punisher? Take my money now!
It is definitely a good time to be a comic book geek, and even better to be a gamer. Rocksteady are definitely committed to DC Comics games, and the Spider-Man game is part of Sony's plans to develop games based on popular Marvel superheroes. While we currently live in the Golden Age of superhero movies, we are definitely witnessing the dawn of the Golden Age of superhero video games.