The Batman Arkham Saga is back, but there's a catch

Behold, Batman Arkham fans. There will be a new entry in the saga, but it comes with a huge catch.
Batman: Arkham Trilogy. Artwork courtesy of Nintendo
Batman: Arkham Trilogy. Artwork courtesy of Nintendo /

It may be hard to believe, but June will mark nine years since the last Batman Arkham title was released. Arkham Knight acted as the final chapter in one of history's most beloved superhero game sagas created by developer Rocksteady Studios. Since then, a new AAA project has followed that story but didn't feature the Cape Crusader himself as the main playable character. Instead, Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League follows a different set of protagonists in the form of Task Force X as they attempt to put down DC's most iconic heroes. It's a bold premise that few could've seen coming but that - if executed right - it could've taken the world by storm.

However, we all know how that story went.

At the time of writing this, less than 200 active players are saving Metropolis from Brainiac's invasion in Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League. That's pretty low when you consider it's a live-service game that should hook its target audience so that they return to play regularly for an extended period.

On the contrary, Arkham Knight saw an increase in the number of players by 50% after negative reviews started to flood in for Task Force X's latest adventure. That all but confirms we all crave another good Batman game set in the Arkham universe. And, fortunately, it appears that's exactly what we'll get later this year, but there's a huge catch.

Batman Arkham Shadow is here

Coming by the hands of Camouflaj - the developers behind the acclaimed Iron Man VR title - there will be a brand new adventure set in the Arkhamverse called Batman: Arkham Shadow. We even got a teaser trailer that puts us in the perspective of the Cape Crusader as he glides through the rooftops of a deteriorated Gotham City. Even if it is just a pre-rendered trailer that doesn't feature any gameplay whatsoever, it's clear Camouflaj nailed the grim tone that should be expected from any project featuring Bruce Wayne as its titular character.

However, there are two important things to notice. First of all: the game won't be released for consoles or PCs, but rather VR headsets. While it's a little disappointing, it's also worth noting that this isn't the first venture the Arkham saga has seen in the VR world. Back in 2016, Batman: Arkham VR was released to middling and positive reviews. People often criticized it for being way too short (taking just two hours to complete) and because it lacked any replay value. So let's hope Camouflaj can learn from these mistakes to make Arkham Shadow a much better game.

The second thing to notice, however, may be a true deal breaker for most fans.

Arkham Shadow will be a Meta Quest exclusive

There are multiple options of VR headsets people can buy to play their favorite games. However, Batman: Arkham Shadow will skip most of them and be released only on the Meta Quest. So if you don't already have one of Meta's headsets and you want to play the latest entry in the Arkham franchise, the total to do so will be $500 plus what the game ends up costing (which could range from the $20 tag all the way to $70 which is the price of modern AAA titles).

Exclusivity is a deal breaker for a lot of gamers. However, whether you choose to purchase a PlayStation, Xbox, or Nintendo Switch, all of these consoles have a lot of acclaimed exclusives to their names. However, The Meta Quest is a little bit different. Its catalog of exclusives is much shorter and features just a few heavy hitters such as Assassin’s Creed Nexus VR or Lego Bricktales. The inclusion of a Batman Arkham game will surely make this backlog much more solid, and position the console as a strong competitor against other VR gaming headsets. However, only time will tell how well the game will do saleswise.

More will be revealed during Summer Game fest

We didn't get to learn much of Batman: Arkham Shadow aside from the fact that it will be released at some point during 2024. However, it won't be long before we get a clearer picture regarding this highly anticipated adventure. According to the official Meta page, the full premiere will come during Summer Game Fest which is slated to take place on June 7.

Until then, I highly recommend checking out Batman Arkham Videos' easter egg breakdown of the recently released teaser trailer to make the wait shorter. And whenever more details about Arkham Shadow are revealed, we'll break them down here in Bam! Smack! Pow!