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S&S; Review: Gotham City Impostors

Posted on the 21 February 2012 by Sameo452005 @iSamKulii
S&S; Review: Gotham City Impostors
Title: Gotham City Impostors
Format: PC, PSN, XBLA
Release Date: Feb 7, 2012, Feb 8, 2012 (XBLA)
Publisher: Warner Brothers Interactive Ent.
Developer: Monolith Productions
Price: $15.00
ESRB Rating: T

The Batman franchise is fairly prolific when it comes to comic-licensed video games; perhaps second to Spiderman. A quick thought on the history of each leads me to conclude that there were very few "bad" games. Once in a while, some developer will attempt to think outside of the box and do something unexpected. Gotham City Impostors represents one of those whacky takes on the license and the FPS genre, and to some extent its successful.
S&S; Review: Gotham City Impostors
Monolith Productions, not to be confused with Monolith Soft, had their last outing in 2009 with F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin. The same version of the Lithtech game engine, Jupiter Extended, that was used in that game is used here. It's also the same engine that runs F.E.A.R. and Condemned: Criminal Origins from 2005. I note these facts because while Gotham City Impostors does not look "bad" it does show some signs of the game engine's age. This may lead some to think of the visuals as blocky. This is especially true when viewed from the perspective of comparison between this and Rocksteady's entries into the franchise. Storywise, this game is very light. Two rival gangs dedicated to Batman and the Joker duke it out on the streets of Gotham City. File this one under parody. This game inspired a small story arc in the actual comics. For a more in-depth look, you can check out DETECTIVE COMICS #867-870.
S&S; Review: Gotham City Impostors
Core Gameplay/Mutliplayer:
You need an XBox Live Gold account to play this game on the 360. I attempted to play the limited single player modes and was stopped by a pop-up to remind me that I did not have the necessary permissions to play the game with my free Live account. Luckily, there is a promotion for one month for $1 currently on Live for those interested in trying out this game. Of course, the primary focus of the game is online play. You have no single player campaign or story mode. Offline single player is limited to training, character customization and player challenges. Multiplayer is limited to online as well, which is unfortunate because I would prefer the inclusion of local vs game play.
S&S; Review: Gotham City Impostors
Online multiplayer is fun and frantic as you face off in teams of up to six players. I managed to get matched on Live in less than a minute. Despite the game being a new release, I was surprised that some of my match ups were with players at Level 40+. Your character does level fairly quickly, however, and you are rewarded for playing as opposed to just doing well in-game. The lack of single player, though, presents a learning curve as you are thrown a lot of makeshift Batman tech to manage including: roller skates, spring heels, grappling hooks, and gliding with dive bombs. One particularly fun mode is a variation on capture the flag call "Psych Warfare." In this mode, you capture a battery for a mind control device and make the other team dizzy. The result for the losing side is a rainbow-swirl floating effect that leaves you helpless, yet seemingly quicker to evade being picked off.
Final thoughts:
Gotham City Impostors is an odd entry into the franchise of Batman-licensed games. This game will live and die by the support of an online community. While some die-hard comic fans may prefer a more canonical romp, this FPS presents a whacky take on the Batman license. This presents the challenges of being unique enough to hold players' attentions and being worthy of its $15 price tag. In this case, the title may not be entirely successful, but the ragtag knockoffs of Batman and the Joker may just be good enough.
Final Score = 7.5/10
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