Developers of Gotham Knights Tease a Uniquely Rich and Expansive Gameplay Experience
Gotham Knights, one of the most keenly anticipated video games of the year, will be released on consoles and PC in October. The planned project is unique from the previous video game series, bringing its own twist to the Batman mythos. It is developed by WB Games Montréal, the same firm that created the critically acclaimed Batman: Arkham Origins in 2013. Following Bruce Wayne’s unexpected death, his old allies band together to protect Gotham City in his absence, despite a mounting crime wave and a deadly mystery involving the enigmatic Court of Owls. Nightwing, Red Hood, Batgirl, and Robin will be put to the test like never before, each with their own special moves and gadgets. of their mentor and father figure, who passed away.
Gotham Knights executive producer Fleur Marty & game director Geoff Ellenor discussed the game’s universe, co-op and opponent dynamics, and teased what players can anticipate in the future game in an exclusive interview with us.
From Robin’s use of a short-range Justice League teleporter to Red Hood’s gun kata fighting technique, each character has their own unique eccentricities. How difficult was it to make each of these characters unique in terms of talents, combat, and movement?
Marty: They all came from the same place because they were all trained by Batman, but it was crucial for us to make each of them unique.
Ellenor: We wanted all of the Knights to be individuals. They’re all rising up to fill the hole left by Batman and the job he was performing. We worked hard to make the heroes as diverse as possible, so that when you pick a hero to play with, you’re not just picking which dialogue and story elements you’ll encounter. You’re getting a sense of that hero’s personality through their move set, and that’s one of the things that makes seeing the individual hero trailers so exciting for us: we get to show you more about how they’re different.
Nightwing, for example, is extremely acrobatic and has a cocky demeanour. He’s not talking about Bruce Wayne’s death since he’s still digesting it. He’s this ridiculously acrobatic character who’s always in the air, and his move set matches that. Robin is a youthful character in our game, which has an impact on his emotional growth throughout the plot. With our game rules, Robin is the most stealthy character and gets the most from his ability to vanish from a situation and reappear from a different angle. It was a lot of fun to imagine how this hero’s personality would influence their mechanics and past, as well as shape who they are.
Marty: It works both ways because Nightwing’s physicality and athleticism are reflected in more story moments. For example, he’s a very tactile figure who will be touching the other guys in the Belfry and other places. Everything comes full circle. [laughing]
The game’s co-op option is one of the game’s most impressive features, allowing players to fluidly bounce in and out of action. How difficult was it to incorporate that while still creating a standalone single-player game?
Marty: The most difficult component of it was the whole untethered co-op experience in viewing the open world because, while you can be together in missions and experience the story at the same time, you can be completely detached and tackling other lines when you’re in the open world. When it comes to the story and character banter, the narrative team had a lot of work on their hands, but it’s a pleasant and engaging thing to accomplish. If you’re not playing in co-op, it can also stand alone. It’s always a delicate balancing act.
Ellenor: When you’re alone in a circumstance, your character is going to say something. You might expect a new line or, at the very least, a different follow-up when you’re with someone else. Your teammate will respond to what you stated, which is a lot of information. We believe it’s critical that, if you’re going to take on our story, you understand that we wanted our story to be unique from the start. A big part of that was showing how the different Knights behave to who’s in front of them, as well as how they work together.
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