Arkham City would be a tough place to vacation, but Batman isn’t there by choice. Instead of sun tan lotion and trunks, he’s packed a huge variety of gadgets to keep the unwashed mass of criminals off his back. Here we tell you the best tips and tricks to use them and keep the Batman out of harm’s way.
The High Dive
If you want to fly across the city at high speed, there are two tricks; the grappling gun (below) and converting your height into speed. Diving for just half a second before pulling up will boost your speed enough to return you to your previous altitude but faster than before. Remember you still need turning space to clear any buildings, so always pull up early – especially during any dreamlike sequences…
Catching Mr Penguin
To defeat the Penguin in the museum, you first need to catch up to him. He’ll throw rooms of enemies at you, including a Titan and something horrible beneath a frozen lake, then retreat to a podium, where you can only take him down by first enlisting the help of Mr Freeze and by secondly recovering a weapon deactivator from Freeze’s stolen suit. Once you’ve done this, reaching the Penguin is a doddle – defeating him, well, that’s another matter.
When you start playing, it might take you 45 minutes to get across the city; by the end you can do it in ten easily, or perhaps quicker. The trick is boosting using the grappling gun. While flying use the grapple to hook onto a distant, high point. Double-click the A button to build up speed as you travel and when you hit the high point you’ll launch high and fast. As you lose speed, just rinse and repeat.
Beating Mr Freeze
The key thing to remember about Mr Freeze is that, despite his sluggish movement, he’s smarter, tougher and more deadly than you – especially in your current state. Never try the same trick on him twice – he’ll have adapted to it and come up with a strategy to counteract it. Like any of the locked down rooms, doing takedowns from above and below are great – as is luring his large metal suit into water or towards magnets, before turning the power on… You can bring up a menu with a list of potential strategies on it if you run out of ideas.
You’ll see the Riddler’s little puzzles all around the city; once you’ve solved a few, you’ll find that the Riddler has informants amongst Arkham City’s criminal gangs. Save the informants for last, then interrogate them instead of knocking them out and they’ll tell you the locations of the Riddler’s trap chambers. Here he’s hidden away hostages he’s taken, which you can access as you solve more fiendish physical puzzles. Take your time in the chambers – they require more of your skills and equipment than any other part of the game.
Most of the equipment you acquire can be used rapidly in combat; you start with batarangs, useful for delaying enemies, but you slowly gain more powerful toys. Use the explosive gel quick use to dodge then detonate enemies, the freeze and electric quick-fires to take troublesome enemies out of action, and the wire quick-fire to disarm weapon carriers. You should always focus on knives, tasers and guns, as they have the ability to rapidly damage you. If you’re in trouble, stun, smoke-bomb and/or dodge.
Your batarangs need a tweak or two before they get really useful, but even the basic batarang can be quickly deployed in combat, if you pull the left trigger on a gamepad. The sonic batarang can distract an enemy, while the remote batarang can get remote enemies or scout areas.
So, you get to fight the Joker. Big surprise. However, this is one of the harder in-game fights, as old paint-face is accompanied by a Titan-infused giant, a one-armed henchman with a giant hammer, and lots of henchmen, some with knives. And two miniature trains endlessly running everyone over. Keep your distance, use your shortcut moves and focus on taking out isolated enemies. If you can use your super-stun on the Titan and ride him, do so, as he’ll knock a lot of the others down. Electrocuting the hammer guy is also handy, as he’ll knock around everyone next to him.
A lot of the Riddler’s scattered question marks require the use of your toolset. Particularly useful is the line-wire, so you can climb onto your wire, and also use it to change your direction mid-travel. Similarly, explosives can be used to trigger switches and remote electrified batarangs can be used to hit switch boxes behind closed doors.
Playing as Catwoman requires you to use your Arkham: City Pass. Once you’ve done that, her missions weave seamlessly into the main story. She travels differently from Batman, leaping huge distances quickly, then clambering more slowly up walls. In combat, her moves are more limited and she’s more fragile, but she runs silently and can climb on the ceiling, making her a stealth takedown specialist.
BATMAN: TM & (c) Comics. (11)