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Hands-on: Batman: Arkham Asylum


After we got to get an eyes-on with Batman: Arkham Asylum's single-player campaign last week, we were hankering for our first hands-on with the game. Luckily, Eidos brought the title to E3 this year, offering more than just the challenge rooms (available for play on kiosks at your local big box store) but also a slice of gameplay from the single-player campaign. Twenty minutes later, we had silently "not murdered" a slew of baddies employing the game's Detective Mode, and found ourselves smiling ear to ear.

A cinematic guided us through the intro to the game -- essentially dropping off Joker at Arkham Asylum and witnessing the subsequent takeover of the facility. And that's when we started sluggin' dudes. Lots of dudes -- with big veins popping out of their arms. Each punch felt surprisingly satisfying and various on-screen commands helped to fluidly guide Batman's blows from one enemies' face to another.

Gallery: Batman: Arkham Asylum | 34 Photos

Soon after, we got to put the game's silent takedowns and grappling hook mechanisms to the test, to which we can attest both work quite well. Entering Detective Mode, we easily snuck around Arkham's heights, Bat-hookshotting from gargoyle to gargoyle, occasionally swooping down to kick some fool in the chest. Which worked really well. For example, we were able to silently glide over a handful of heavily armed thugs, drop behind them, sneak up on each one and silently put them down.

The whole scene gloried in violence, with the game even slowing down to show you the gritty detail as you finish off this or that enemy. To be honest, the entirety of our time with the game felt well-polished and got us all the more excited for the game's upcoming August 25th release date. Here's hoping the rest of the single-player campaign lives up to our demo.

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