Test footage for a never completed Batman game has supposedly surfaced online. The game, once a concept for Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 and titled Gotham by Gaslight never saw the light of day, but a leak has let us have our one and only glimpse of what might have been..
Gotham by Gaslight was to be developed by Day 1 Studios in co-operation with Elseworlds – a branch of DC, the publishing company behind the Batman comics which specialised in surreal and historical interpretations of some of the publishers most popular heroes.
The story supporting the gameplay was based on the 1989 comic story-arc of the same name which featured art by Mike Mignola, the creator of Hellboy, and transported Young Master Wayne into a late 19th Century Gotham City, where ally law-man Jim Gordon and loyal butler Alfred exist but there is no Joker or Bane or even a Harley Quinn to trouble the Bat. Those popular villains from the comics, movies and Arkham Asylum / Arkham City games are absent and instead the main antagonist is someone from the real history of the time – Jack the Ripper!
The two minute video clip shows off some very ropey early graphics and laborious movement from the heavily caped Dark Knight who is decked out in a Victorian style spin on the familiar cowled costume as he leaps rooftops and wanders the streets of a 1889 gothic Gotham, running past uninterested non-playable characters and even another Batman standing bizarrely still amongst the other NPCs. At one point, Bats discards of his cape to reveal a massive collared under shirt. Truly weird.
We’re not inspired by what we see of Gotham by Gaslight and removing such popular villains seemingly makes the game lose its lustre. Batman needs the Joker. They are a winning formula. We must admit the Batman costume here is pretty cool, but the premise works much better as a comic book – We’ll stick to modern day Arkham City anytime!
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