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What we already know about Batman: Arkham Asylum 2

ALSO FEATURING…


BLACK MASK

We certainly didn’t expect this minor Batman villain to feature in a sequel, but the trailer clearly indicates that he will. With the exception of Arkham Asylum’s gate at the beginning, the largest and most obvious sign in the footage reads “SIONIS” in big block lettering. Roman Sionis is Black Mask’s true identity.

Who is Black Mask? He’s a childhood friend of Bruce Wayne who also lost his parents. Only he was the one that murdered them and then carved his trademark headpiece out of the wood from his mother’s coffin. As an adult, he ran his father’s cosmetics business into bankruptcy by selling a beauty product that disfigured hundreds of unsuspecting women. Wayne saved the company, much to Roman’s everlasting resentment. This dark past is referenced twice in the first Arkham Asylum game.

We’re not sure why the SIONIS sign is located inside an amusement ride. Perhaps the trailer is simply mashing locations together, and Batman will be forced to visit a cosmetics factory – or department store – full of horribly scarred Sionis test subjects. Gotham Splicers, anyone?


THE SETTING


“Arkham has moved.” Those three words appear at the end of the trailer, and they make up the sequel’s official website URL. Where the asylum is now located, however, remains up for debate.

Some fans are already speculating that the game will be open-world, with all of Gotham City free to explore. Yes, the camera zooms back to reveal skyscrapers and urban transit lines, but we seriously doubt that the entire metropolis – or even a substantial chunk of it – will be included. The series is not sandbox, and a probable release in late 2010 / early 2011 does not give developer Rocksteady enough time to transform it into such. Don’t expect a fully operational Batmobile or Batplane. Not yet, anyway.

Besides, look at those makeshift concrete walls. That hastily strung barbwire. The familiar Arkham guards. The asylum is still a secure, self-contained location that will consist of several separate buildings, or sections. Sections like the previously discussed, now dilapidated Iceberg Lounge. Or the Sionis cosmetics factory. Or Gotham General Hospital, where Joker got his blood bag. Or this:

Not to bore you with more bragging, but we called this back in September, too:

“Batman’s always battling villains on rundown roller coasters, or chasing them through cobwebbed funhouses. Gotham City clearly has at least one out-of-business carnival… possibly dozens. Like the asylum, this setting is bordered, manageably sized and packed with themed zones. The Joker is right at home here.”

And voila, the trailer includes an abandoned amusement park, complete with creepy track-riding corpse. Need more evidence? At the start of the video, when the camera is pulling away from the Arkham wall and through the passing train, there’s a poster to the left side. It’s barely visible, but we think it reads “Wonder City – Cancelled.”


THE STORY


A final prediction. One that we’ve put forth twice already (here and here). One that seems more and more likely, the more and more we watch this teaser trailer. Batman: Arkham Asylum 2 will be based on the No Man’s Land comic miniseries.

As we wrote in September:

“Gotham is ravaged by an earthquake, quarantined by the U.S. government and abandoned by much of the population. Gangs and supervillains carve the metropolis into territories: Mr. Freeze, Zsasz, Poison Ivy, Bane, Scarecrow, Joker, Two-Face and even Lex Luthor all claim a piece of the pie. Batman would have to visit each area in turn, slowly but surely taking back his city.”

Why would Arkham Asylum be moved into the middle of the city, where insane criminals can easily wreak havoc on the infrastructure and citizenry? An earthquake or other far-reaching disaster is the only feasible explanation. Since Joker’s injuries imply that the sequel takes place relatively soon after the original, perhaps Arkham and Blackgate inmates were moved temporarily so that repairs could be made to their respective facilities. After all, the asylum was just torn apart by Poison Ivy’s tentacles, while the prison is still damaged by Joker’s fire.

Then the earthquake struck, “temporary” turned into “semi-permanent” and the crazies ran loose on Gotham’s streets. Batman will have to enter the new Arkham and restore order once more. If you doubt us, check out the trailer’s final logo. It’s concrete. It’s cracked. It’s crumbling. It’s No Man’s Land.

Dec 15, 2009


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67 comments

  • DoubleD - June 25, 2010 4:51 p.m.

    i cant believe no-one noticed this before.... in the video at about 1:30 theres a sign above the ride that says sionis....maybe reffering to the black mask(real name Roman Sionis)
  • Spartan11794 - April 1, 2010 6:53 a.m.

    now the official site is rubbing dent in our faces
  • dietaryraptor - January 16, 2010 9:42 p.m.

    I read Batman's NML. And it was a great book. Most of the villians that are in this article are in the book. I believe without a doubt that it takes place in NML. If it does takes place in NML that means no Batmobile due to the destroied streets and no Batboat due to the mines in the river. But still I can't wait to play this game!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • MacFromMCP - December 29, 2009 5:08 a.m.

    Man I can not wait for this games release I just hope that it isnt ruined by being a sandbox style game I hope you guys were right (and knowing you, you are)about the carnival thing it would be cool if you were running round a creepy amusment park kicking bad guy butt on a roller coaster
  • MacFromMCP - December 28, 2009 4:03 a.m.

    this game will be awsome i hope its even better than the first game (which I thought was awsome) I hope that if catwoman is in it its not the haley barey version that movie sucked ass lol
  • CountZero - December 23, 2009 3:45 p.m.

    This game is gonna be great, that much is certain. I just hope they don't ruin Catwoman by spending more time on her tits than on the rest of her character combined.
  • bron1417 - December 23, 2009 12:11 a.m.

    i still have to play arkham asylum but if all this is true (knowing you guys it most likely is) then i cant wait for this game.
  • vegastwan - December 21, 2009 2:40 a.m.

    ok like someone said in one of these comments if you listen closely to the end of the video when the batlogo cracks you hear whispering and i tryed it and i did... now if you compare that to the voice of the scarecrow in number 1... pretty simalar. i just hope they dont put all of these enemys into one game... hope they exspand it into part 3 4 so on. it could be possible we might come across alot of enemys in the game but dont get the chance to truly see them until parts 3 4 etc....
  • karsanchaudhary - December 20, 2009 3:21 p.m.

    ohh! they forgot clay face: FIRST APPERRED IN ARKHAM 1: who was changing into various other game characters, while asking to be let out of his prison cell before batman free's commissioner gordon. CAN BE SEEN IN THE TEASER: (43 seconds) his face on the back of the roller cart.
  • matt588 - December 20, 2009 5:57 a.m.

    does it seem like someone is whispering something just after the batman logo cracks? ps. ordinarily I try to resist recaptcha but this one seems creepliy relevent: jailors to
  • BFMVfan15 - December 19, 2009 5:40 a.m.

    im so ready for this game to come out. I loved the first one.
  • dante1924 - December 18, 2009 11:51 p.m.

    Sorry for yet another prediction folks, but in the first game, Joker said he planted bombs all around the city, and that's why nobody could go to the asylum. Batman said he was lying, but what if bombs really were planted, and disappointed that his titan plan didn't work, Joker got two-face rob the bank, and while batman and gordon were distracted, BOOM! This was his backup plan I previously mentioned. It would certainly explain the explosion in front of him in the trailer! Rocksteady must go to gamesradar while bored. There is almost no possible way that all of these predictions are correct by pure chance!
  • sexyman500 - December 18, 2009 1:25 p.m.

    guess I'll never know the answer to the mysterious jacket *sigh*
  • GiverofSleep - December 18, 2009 1 p.m.

    surely the greatest detective of all time is Nancy Drew?
  • IGiveUFunkButt - December 18, 2009 11:31 a.m.

    Please, God of games, let all of these predictions be true!
  • ComradeKhani - December 18, 2009 3:04 a.m.

    Ivy's plants from the first game could play a role in the earthquake theory. Say Batman missed a few plants; they start spreading, get to the city, cause a massive earthquake, and voila: No Man's Land
  • loganb4295 - December 17, 2009 11:14 p.m.

    It's definitely no man's land except bended a little. i dont really care what batman story it is as long as its as good or better than the first. you've done good rocksteady. don't let us down.
  • ComicJ27 - December 17, 2009 10:22 p.m.

    What I gathered from "Arkham has moved" is that there was the earthquake mentioned. That maybe how the Joker escapes again but I think it takes place a while after the original only because it looks like they built the Arkham gate around Gotham, as a quarantine for everyone who escaped. Just a thought.
  • GamesRadarCharlieBarratt - December 17, 2009 10:06 p.m.

    @Sergesauce024 Did you read the second page of the article? I devoted three paragraphs to Black Mask and the SIONIS sign... @WrathLord03 I mentioned the Two-Face audio clip in my previous speculation feature, "Which villains will appear in Arkham Asylum 2?" Although I'm pretty sure this sequel will take place shortly after the first game, I don't think it will take place within minutes... more like several weeks or months.
  • sexyman500 - December 17, 2009 8:27 a.m.

    so the jacket means nothing?

Showing 1-20 of 67 comments

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