Batman - The Caped Crusader

PC
  • 1988

  • FormatVideo & Arcade
  • TypeAction Adevnture
  • SystemMicrocomputer

This was a game was developed by Special FX Software & released by (UK Based) Ocean Software in 1988.

Batman’s face eerily disintegrates into becoming a skull signifying the end of your game@CheekyCrissy

Ocean Software were one of Europe’s biggest game publishers in the 1980’s with it’s main body of work consisting of TV / Movie Tie – ins and Arcade Conversions. It is kind of coincidental but in the following year Tim Burton would be bringing his very unique vision to the big screen. (Thus changing how we all see the Dark Knight and of course turning the entire franchise on it’s head) But back to this game!

This game goes back to the comicbook roots (And possibly the light hearted TV show of the 1960’s) And is best described as a side scrolling ‘Arcade-Adventure game’ Yes, you ARE going to be defending yourself against bad guys, the only way you know how, with a BIFF & a POW, armed with a trusty ‘Bata-rang’ & using punches & kicks. But this game really isn’t much about that.

The game’s focus is in solving puzzles to gain points (Or Percentages at the Pause / Subscreen) By picking up items along the way and using them. There are TWO stories you can play in this game, of which play separately from each other. (So in essence you were getting ‘two’ games for the price of one.) Each game pits you (BATMAN) against two deadly enemies in the ‘Batman’ universe, The ‘Penguin’ or the ‘Joker’. In the ‘Penguin’ Story, you have to close down a hidden Master Control Computer to shut down his army of robotic penguins. In the ‘Joker’ Story, the Joker has kidnapped Robin & has plans to blow him up. You ARE essentially going up against a hidden sandclock as you play. Batman’s face eerily disintegrates into becoming a skull signifying the end of your game, but you can control this by replenishing Batman with candy sweets along the way or by attacking thugs on screen. Hit them enough and they will drop a candy for you to use.

The easiest way to do this more quickly (And effectively) is wait until they reach the edge of the screen and then repeatedly punch or kick (Throw Batarang if you are equipped with one) And he will drop the candy and run off screen. (A visual cue that you have defeated him) The thugs in this game do not necessarily die, but will run off screen and drop food items. Some areas need obstacles to pass. (An ID Badge is needed to pass one area, while in other areas, you will need a Rope or a Picklock) Visually it is very bright & colourful. With a ‘Panelling’ Technique reminding you throughout playing the game that you ARE playing within a comic-book universe.

Each representing a ‘Window’ . It is important to point out that graphics in games during this era, were there to serve a purpose. This was an era where gameplay was arguably ‘King’. I have a particular fondness for my cousin’s Commodore 64 version of the game, rather than my own Atari ST that I had at home. (Which also goes to prove the point, in that graphics don’t necessarily make the game, no matter how pretty it looks) Batman is a slow moving character (Until you are able to find the sneakers / trainer shoes, but even they don’t last very long) Why the developers made your character slow moving is something of a mystery, but it builds a tense pace to the game, as you constantly fighting thugs pretty much ‘survive on’ rather than avoid.

The puzzles have SOME logic to them, (ie. When your character is standing NEXT to a computer and there is a computer disk by your feet with the clue at the top LEFT of the screen saying (Insert Disk) is pretty straight forward. While other puzzles will leave your head scratching for some time.

Both games have their own charm to it (And difficulty level to match) Music on some games can get a little repetitive (Though THANKFULLY this is optional) Sound effects are a little basic but this is expected. This is not a beat ‘em up game as such. This game was released on all formats at the time. Amiga, Atari ST, Commodore 64, Amstrad & Spectrum and is available to play on Emulation.

Review by Cris Christou Follow him on twitter here: @CheekyCrissy  

Batman: The Caped Crusader LongplayCLICK the carousel below to see the gaming pics and videos:

Batman: The Caped Crusader (C64) - In-Game Theme

  • 1988

  • FormatVideo & Arcade
  • TypeAction Adevnture
  • SystemMicrocomputer

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