Batman’s Best and Worst Games

Batman: The Movie Arcade - 1991
Atari - Arcade

Again based on the film, this old-school beat-em-up featured actual voices and themes from the film. There were also first-person driving sections in the Batmobile and Batwing where you had to shoot cars and helicopters out the way, respectively. Of note - the batsuit is modeled exactly like the one worn in the movie - none of that cute purple nonsense.

Batman: Return/Revenge of the Joker - 1991-1992
Sunsoft - NES, Genesis, GameBoy

Strangely billed as a semi-sequel to the film yet primarily taking inspiration from the comics, the Joker is back and Batman needs to kill him - again. Side-scrolling action levels rule the roost here, with different weapon power-ups. Also known for having some of the best graphics ever seen on the NES as the actual Batman and character sprites were much larger than before. Inventive and also one of the last times we’d see the Batman license based solely on the comics.

Batman Returns - 1992-1994
Konami - NES, Super NES, PC
Sega - Genesis, Master System, Sega CD, Game Gear
Atari - Lynx

Never mind the already saturated market in the early-mid 90s of Final Fight clones, Batman Returns was actually pretty damn good (at least on the SNES). Based on the incredibly dark Tim Burton sequel, you walked from left to right, beating the crap out of clowns, Catwoman and the Penguin in levels based on the film. The Genesis version contrasted wildly - with levels containing a darker color palette and resembled a straightforward action game.

Batman: The Animated Series - 1993
Konami - GameBoy

The first game based off the amazing cartoon, you control Batman (and occasionally Robin) in another side-scroller beat-em-up. At the end of each level, you fight one of the main villains from the series - Joker, Riddler, Catwoman, Mr. Freeze, etc.

The Adventures of Batman & Robin - 1994
Konami - SNES
Sega - Genesis, Sega CD, Game Gear

Again - two wildly different games. In the SNES version, only Batman is playable as he traverses environments faithful to the animated series and fights just about every main villain. The Genesis version on the other hand was notoriously frustrating (seriously, we hated that game), but at least Player Two got to play as Robin. Each boss fight was also played in a different style (Mode 7-like scrolling for Mad Hatter, use of jetpack versus Mr. Freeze). The Sega CD version was just like the Genesis one, except with added driving levels and animated custcenes made specifically for the game.

Justice League Task Force - 1995
Acclaim - SNES, Genesis

Evil badass Darkseid is about to take over Earth and it’s up to the Justice League to pound the crap out of each other. Wait - really? Apparently the only way to defeat the evil mastermind is through beating the pulp out of the other heroes in this generic, glitchy and unbalanced fighting game. Oh yeah, Batman’s in the cast.

Batman Forever - 1995-1996
Acclaim - Super NES, Genesis, GameBoy
Probe - GameGear, PC

Based off the neon pageant masquerading as the third film (we know, we really loved it when it came out), this hideous beat-em-up featured motion-captured characters (think the Mortal Kombat digitized fighters) and had you punch and kick similar-looking thugs to death. At the end, you fight a mo-capped Tommy Lee Jones and Jim Carrey. Can’t forget this soon enough.

Batman Forever: The Arcade Game - 1996
Acclaim - Arcade, PlayStation, Sega Saturn, PC

Another beat-em-up, this time with foreground/background depth like Final Fight - Batman Forever: The Arcade Game enabled you to play as Val Kilmer and Chris O’Donnell yet again. For this go around, you collected a shit-ton of power-ups like screen exploding grenades or flaming batarangs. Naturally, you can cause a 400-hit combo on a random thug. He’s already dead, Batman. He’s already dead.

Batman & Robin - 1998
Acclaim - PlayStation, Saturn

Mike Nelson of Mystery Science Theater 3000 fame called Batman & Robin not the worst movie ever made, but the worst thing ever made. By extension, a 3D beat-em-up starring George Clooney, Chris O’Donnell and Alicia Silverstone that handles like crap and looks like shit based on the worst thing ever made probably isn’t worth your time. Oh, Batman. You and your follies.

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  • undawater - January 27, 2009 9:06 p.m.

    I remember being totally in awe of the driving levels of the Sega CD versions of Batmans Returns... they were cutting edge at the time!
  • kamikaz3e124 - May 2, 2009 7:39 p.m.

    Every comment between blutal and nicksayswatup are gay.
  • Coolbeans69 - May 7, 2009 1:47 a.m.

    Anyone here watch jamesnintendonerd? His review of return and revenge of the joker made it pretty clear how bad it was
  • mastersword369 - June 20, 2009 12:06 p.m.

    @coolbeans: Avgn is great! the batman reveiws are great, especially the "final battle" with the Joker
  • CtrlAltDe1337 - August 25, 2009 5:28 a.m.

    you couldn't tell from the lack of info on Lego Batman and no info whatsoever of Arkham Asylum?
  • Cyberninja - August 25, 2009 2:37 p.m.

    whats with all the hate with the first comments yes we all know batman is happy
  • GamesRadarBrettElston - August 25, 2009 5:25 p.m.

    @cart00n It's not a reprint. All articles are live on the web forever. We merely posted a link back to it for those who missed it the first time through. A "new" version would only add Arkham and more LEGO to the list, as they're the only new Batman game since this published. That necessitates a warning?
  • Felixthecat - August 25, 2009 6:42 p.m.

    Well done Brett, you really are something to behold with your smooth style of dealing with situations, kudos.
  • garnsr - August 25, 2009 10:52 p.m.

    This doesn't really say which are the best or worst games, there's hardly any critique of the quality of any of these games.
  • gatornation1254 - August 26, 2009 9:20 p.m.

    What the fuck where did this article come from? The first comment is from 11 months ago.
  • EffinChrys - September 3, 2009 11:44 p.m.

    When the fuck did we get ice cream!?
  • nicksayswatzup - January 14, 2009 2:34 a.m.

    all of you are gay (and so is wonder woman!)
  • gunwraith - January 27, 2009 7:46 p.m.

    It's gay that they left out one of the best batman games of all time. "Batman" (1990) for gameboy. Challenging, addicting, and good graphics.
  • GamesRadarShanePatterson - April 27, 2009 9:39 p.m.

    didn't forget batman for gameboy at all. it's apart of the "batman" entry. look at what systems i included. it was apart of the same franchise release.
  • swordworld04 - May 1, 2009 2:12 p.m.

    first comments make me lul reCAPTCHA: explain blair
  • kamikaz3e124 - May 2, 2009 7:41 p.m.

  • JohnnyFirebird - May 15, 2009 3:29 a.m.

    JohnnyFirebird is gay. It's true. I kind of liked the Batman game for the SNES, and the Batman game coming out for the Genesis was a long time coming... looked like it would be import only. I saw pictures of it in Video Games & Computer Entertainment magazine and watched them longingly. Then I played it. It was alright.
  • michaelmcc827 - August 24, 2009 10:31 p.m.

    wow this was dug up from a year ago lol...and pain shatterson wrote it, ah what nostalgia. funny to be on the front page though
  • GamerTagsSuck - August 24, 2009 11:33 p.m.

    Why yes. Yes it is funny that it got dug up after so long. And the Angry NINTENDO nerd kicks ass. The AVGN, who is the same guy, kicks only slightly less ass because he does all old systems.
  • Hurricrane - August 25, 2009 1:25 a.m.

    another fine retrospective from Mr. Patterson... even though he's supposed to be dead... minor details!

Showing 1-20 of 29 comments

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