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Letters from the Front

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Batman has faced alot of hard consequences in his journey to get rid of the criminal scum of Gotham City, but rarely are we put into his shoes to make those decisions in a game about the famous superhero. Telltale reversed that in their first season of their Batman game which I found to be a masterful story about the Dark Knight himself and this season happens to be more of the same masterful storytelling that was seen in the first season. Telltale’s Batman adventure focuses on the sacrifices Bruce Wayne must make in order to keep Gotham safe, and this weight continues to bear down on the Dark Knight as new players enter Gotham.

This review will be much more different then triple A games, since they’re split into 5 different episodes then a full feature triple A game that is more easier to review. You can read the 5 reviews separately down below.

                                                  EPISODE ONE

Telltale’s story of the Caped Crusader is a dark and mature take on the iconic character that is original and great. If the first season of Telltale’s Batman taught us anything, it’s that you shouldn’t expect the best outcome for the famous and iconic characters of the Batman mythology. Season 2 picks up a year after the events of the original, my Alfred has a missing eye and Bruce Wayne is struggling with the choices that he has made in his quest to save Gotham. The first episode introduces Riddler, who’s been absent from Gotham City for a very long time and as in most Batman stories, he has a grand ego to go with his big brain full of knowledge. At the end of the first episode, all the drama and the tension makes this episode the strongest and I hope the rest of the season continues on this path.

                                                     EPISODE TWO

After a promising start to the second season which came back on the heels of the incredible first season that was a refreshing tale of the Dark Knight himself, the second episode falls flat. The storyline here is uneventful and nothing but filler, the voice acting falls flat, and the ending which sets up for the third episode. This episode kind of stalled this Batman season but I hope it picks up again after a misstep.

Episode Two picks up on the heels where Episode One left off, with Amanda Waller revealing to Batman that she knows of his identity. Episode One shined when Telltale brought many background characters of the Batman lore to the forefront, this episode pushes all of that aside to bring the best of Batman’s rogue gallery to Gotham. Victor Fries, Harleen Quinzel, and Bane have a spotlight shined on them for most of this episode as Bruce Wayne is forced to infiltrate the gang. At the end of this episode, it just falls flat but I hope it doesn’t derail the rest of the season in terms of quality storytelling.

                                                 EPISODE THREE

Just as in anything else, Telltale’s Netflix-style Batman story isn’t immune to bad episodes. Episode Two was just an absolute failure and at the end, I hoped that the rest of the season wouldn’t fall flat and wouldn’t derail the story and I was proven wrong. Episode Three puts the train back on track after a slight derail.

Episode Three quickly picks up from the ending of Episode Two, with the mystery of Riddler’s frozen body resolved in a way that sounds realistic and even better, Bruce Wayne returns as Batman as Bruce has to use Batman and himself burrow deeper into Harley’s evil plans. This episode pushes Bruce and Batman to his limits as we’ll see in the upcoming two episodes and makes sense as the walls continue to close in on Bruce Wayne and putting pressure on the Caped Crusader from all sides. As of now, there are two characters that put Batman’s identity at risk which being Amanda Waller and Alfred who I sense will cave in and leave. Both are in on who the Batman really is and that information is quite powerful. Unfortunately, the ending to this episode is disappointing because it just stops abruptly. I hope the penultimate episode gives some answers for that abrupt ending.

                                                     EPISODE FOUR

The fourth episode is the shortest one yet of the second season and the strongest out of the bunch. It’s also the first in that Batman is not actually seen at all during the whole episode and it helps because it looks like to be a two-part episode with one focusing on Bruce Wayne while the other episode will focus on Batman. The quickened pace helps because story arcs are being tied up for the conclusion of this Batman season.

The fourth episode is the strongest out because the characters seen in the previous episodes don’t even show up here, even less so Batman. What the focus is however on is Amanda Waller’s motives become clear, resolving any issue of me trying to be on her good or bad side. Alfred is seen here again and I have feeling that I am right that Alfred will leave Bruce as Bruce continues to struggle with Batman and I force him to be the darkest version of himself yet in this season and also it takes the biggest step in redefining who the Joker is. I like how this episode isn’t the usual Telltale episode that most of their games are known for which happen to be stuttering, framerate issues, crashing, and much more. Glad that Telltale has somewhat resolved that problem with their long in the tooth engine.

                                              EPISODE FIVE

Episode Five wraps up Season 2 nicely and neatly, much like the first season setting it up for the third season which I hope does come but it’s very much up in the air due to the predicament that Telltale currently is in. One of the biggest draws that I like about the Telltale Batman games is that it has spent the first season and most of this season flipping what you know about the Batman lore on it’s head; Telltale has not been afraid of flipping the lore around in their own standalone universe. The biggest payoff here is that John Doe becomes the Joker and just as I suspected Alfred decided to leave my Bruce as I pushed him to become the thing he fears most as the threat of the Joker pushes him to the brink. This episode and this season are memorable because the consequences have all built up to this and no character is spared and the damage is not only done physically but also emotionally as well.

Episode Five drives the point into the ground that no character is safe and no character in Telltale’s universe of the Caped Crusader is clean. The focus here is on the dynamic between Joker and Batman and mostly about Joker becoming who he is, the Clown Prince of Crime. During the course of Episode Five, it plays out wonderfully with a great impactful climax that sets up for a great ending to this season. Much like the first season, this season kept me hooked and although it kind of slipped it didn’t lose my interest or became boring and kept you on the edge of your seat although it became a bit predictable. Much like the first season, it was very much an Adult-oriented, Mature-oriented Netflix show about the Caped Crusader.

The Finale:

This season was much better than the first with a bigger cast of characters and background characters of the Batman lore coming to the forefront. Telltale’s take on the Dark Knight has been interesting and has been nothing but a fun time that happens to be not only original but also intriguing. The last episode sets up an interesting premise for my Batman and for my Bruce if there would be a third, I recommend this season and the entire Telltale’s Batman story for any gamer who is interested in an original and mature take on the Dark Knight.

 

 

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