Batman - Telltale Series


Genre:    Adventure, Noir 

Developer & Publisher:    Telltale GAmes            

Released:   August 2016             

Requirements (minimum):

  • OS: Windows 7 64Bit Service Pack 1
  • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo 2.4GHz
  • Memory: 3 GB RAM
  • Graphics: Nvidia GTS 450+ with 1024MB+ VRAM (excluding GT) - latest drivers required
  • DirectX: Version 11
  • Additional Notes: Not Recommended for Intel integrated graphics



By flotsam


Batman: Episode 1 – Realm of Shadows

Telltale Games

I could probably stop now. Just knowing who the maker is tells you a whole lot about what you need to know, and probably whether this is for you or not. Dark and character driven, conversation choices guiding the outcomes, finger pecking battles along the way. Limited puzzling, comic style graphics, high production values, and episodic.

Could be any of the back catalogue. Is certainly this one. Which isn’t at all a bad thing.

Realm of Shadows is as much about Bruce Wayne as it is about Batman, and arguably more so. Bruce is backing the District Attorney Harvey Dent in his tilt at becoming mayor, Oswald Cobblepot surfaces after many years, and a catlike creature prowls the rooftops by night as Selina Kyle strolls out with Harvey by day. Vicki Vale comes calling, the gangster Carmine Falcone wants in on the possible new administration and Alfred is Alfred.

The characters are the thing so enough said.

I don’t know enough about the Batman world to know whether all these characters existed at the time and in the way they are portrayed here. But I don’t really care, and by not knowing it doesn’t really matter. They are what they are, and my engagement with them is uncluttered by any broader or deeper detail. You may be different, and therefore any juxtaposition may grate, but I can neither shed light or comment.

What I can say is that this episode lays the table for the rest of the episodes rather nicely. It starts with a bang, languishes a little but then gets going, clunks occasionally on the dialogue but by and large delivers, and finishes on a note that left me wanting to play the next episode.

While much about the Telltale episodic games are the same or similar, there are differences. The finger pecking generally has some different moves and combinations, and while I did think some of the combinations here were a tad ornery (in that the screen said do this and by the time I had read it, found the keys and executed I was too late), by and large this is a forgiving game in terms of the action sequences. First and foremost is that there are sequences akin to your health running out in an action game; that is, you can sustain a certain amount of damage before you fail, as opposed to failing at each misstep. I liked this aspect a lot, and it suited the bat-ness of the whole thing.

Plot wise, you can discover the rest yourself. Except to say that secrets abound,  and there are some intriguing cat/bat interactions, with clearly more to come.

Choices are important, at least as to how your characters will develop. You get to choose between brutality or arrest, providing information to the police or to the press, gentle and not so gentle persuasion to name just a few. Many of my choices were in the majority, but some in the distinct minority. As always, how they impact what follows won’t really be known until it’s played again.

There are some “detecting” bits, which involve combining clues to determine what happened, and in a similar way you combine mobster guards with possible methods of demise to break into a secure facility. Once you have reckoned with your bat-drone. The detecting was a little artificial but I did like the latter scenario. Plus it led to the most intense of the action sequences, which I survived by the skin of my bat-teeth.

I like Telltale, I like comics and the bat, and I liked this.

I played on:

OS: Windows 10

Processor: Intel i7-3820 4GHz


Video card: AMD Radeon HD 7800 2048MB



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