Now that Batman: Arkham Origins has been officially announced, players have been anxiously awaiting more news as to which villains they will see in the game. Concept art revealed characters such as the Deathstroke and The Penguin, but it will be Black Mask that Batman must take down in order to protect the City of Gotham once again. Learn more details about our newest foe after the break.
Hardcore fans of Batman are well aware of the treacherous and vile ways of Black Mask, but casual fans may be scratching their heads as they enter into the world of Arkham Origins. Players who dug around and found all of the bonus content hidden within Arkham Asylum and Arkham City were given back story behind the character, but this time he will be upfront and after the Bat.
In a recent interview with Game Informer, Creative director Eric Holmes shed some light on the decision to cast Roman Sionis aka Black Mask as the central force behind The Dark Knight’s reckoning:
“We realize that Black Mask is not necessarily as prominent in people’s minds as some other classic Batman villains, so we realize we also need to do work to explain why he’s really cool and make him felt in the game. It’s not something people bring a lot of baggage to when you see the Black Mask, so we have to do the work to make him scary.”
I respect Holmes’ decision to dig deeper into the annals of Batman’s illustrious past. Having not chosen The Joker again as a central villain, it brings greater opportunities for fans old and new to learn more about their favorite superhero. Holmes is not playing it safe by picking a semi-familiar villain and that gives him the best advantage to head the franchise as his own, away from Rocksteady Studios path. Holmes continues:
“Black Mask is new money. He’s rich. He’s very, very powerful. He’s made it. He’s known for being brutal and sadistic. And particularly at this point in the Arkham franchise he has enormous resources. He is the number one gang leader in Gotham. And has easily the most power in the city. Roman Sionis is suspected for a lot of things, but nothing’s pinned on him. The Janus Cosmetics company is his background. He inherited a family business related to cosmetic chemicals and ran it into the ground, and then turned it around into a huge criminal enterprise selling drugs. You see Sionis branding even in Arkham City. The steel mills are Sionis facilities. His money primarily comes from the drug trade.”
The way Holmes describes Black Mask is very hopeful for the game. With his influence, we can assume he is the one who will be calling on the eight assassins to hunt down Batman. As previously mentioned, we can count on Deathstroke to be a part of the bunch, but who will be the other seven? Deadshot could be a great potential assassin – he was seen in Arkham City. With his marksmanship abilities, Deadshot could bring a whole new level of long distance game play to the franchise.
The Penguin – pre-pop-bottle to the dome – was also shown in the concept art, but he is more likely a plot connection than a potential threat. The Justice League was rumored to be a part of this game at some point, but now that we are gaining more details, I can’t see that happening. I would hope for more Catwoman, Robin, and Batgirl to play a more intricate part of this story – Alfred too.
Mark Hamill has claimed that Arkham City would be his last voice appearance as The Clown Prince of Crime, but it’s never too late to rebut your statement Mr. Hamill. We all know he will make an appearance somewhere in Gotham, so let’s cross our fingers and hope for Hamill to return.
It seems as though Batman has his hands pretty much full. Who do you think Warner Bros. Games Montreal will choose as the eight assassins Black Mask will call on? What other characters do you hope to encounter throughout the game?
Batman: Arkham Origins will be available on October 25, 2013 for the Playstation 3, Xbox 360, Wii U and PC.
Source: Game Informer