Over the weekend, Warner Bros. confirmed that Batman remains a big part of its interactive future. In an interview with the PlayStation Blog, Ames Kirshen, vice president of product development for the Arkham and DC Comics games at Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, stated, “Batman is one of the cornerstone IPs for Warner Bros. With the Arkham series, we were finally able to realize the full potential of the character.” It's not a very bold statement, though it is an obvious one.
Since Lego Batman first arrived on the scene in 2008, the Dark Knight has had quite a run of success with his various video game incarnations. Combined with the Batman: Arkham series, the pointy-eared millionaire has easily recorded tens of millions of game sales over the past seven years. Given the recent success with Batman: Arkham Knight (horrible PC launch notwithstanding), it makes a lot of sense for Warner Bros. Interactive to keep the big guy around in some form or another, even if current fan-favorite developer Rocksteady Studios is claiming to be done with Batman.
Not that Kirshen was very forthcoming with just what those future plans might entail. “We don’t have anything to talk about at this time, but the possibilities are endless with a character as dynamic and beloved as Batman,” Kirshen said. It's a wonderful bit of vague PR speak that we've come to know and expect from the gaming industry, and makes it seem like Kirshen is letting us in on a little secret when in fact, he's not saying much of anything at all.
Even with the shroud of secrecy, we do have a little bit of a potential idea for what awaits Batman video games. Considering there's a Lego Batman movie on tap for 2017, which given TT Games' (developers of the Lego franchise) history, means a game will likely be coming then, too. Batman's also a big part of Lego Dimensions, which just arrived at retail, and there is more DC Comics content coming to that very game over the course of the next few months.
As to the future of more "adult" Batman games, that is a bit more of a mystery. Given that all of the Arkham Knight content isn't even available yet (the game did only come out a few months ago mind you), it's incredibly unlikely WBIE will be shedding any light on the future of the Arkham series, or a potential replacement. We've heard rumblings in the past of a potential Justice League game, but that seems wildly ambitious given the number of characters and abilities that would need to be realized, when Rocksteady won't even let you play as anyone but Batman in Arkham Knight.
Whatever the case for Warner Bros. Interactive's plans, you can be sure Batman will be a part of them. He's the only hero the company has had any real success with in translating to the video game format, outside of fighting games, and with his popularity seemingly never in question, it's just a matter of time until we see the Dark Knight digitized again.
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