It’s been almost a week since Batman’s latest game released to widespread critical acclaim from both critics and fans of the DC superhero. Anyone who’s sunken endless hours exploring the various nooks and crannies of Batman: Arkham City is aware that there’s a ton of available side content to explore besides the initial campaign (which is awesome by the way).
Super villains to track down, ringing phone booths to answer, challenges to complete, and countless riddles to solve are just some examples of the Dark Knight’s extracurricular activities to tackle during his free roam time. With such a high to-do list on hand, it can be easy to skip by the Easter eggs that the developers at Rocksteady filled into the open world of Arkham City. If you though Arkham Asylum was a tribute to fans of Batman with all its hidden treats, wait until you uncover the secrets lurking beneath the curtains in the sequel.
Here is a rundown of the bits you may have missed the first time around as well as possible hints at a sequel to Batman: Arkham City.
Massive spoilers below, you have be warned.
Killer Croc’s cameo
Yes, you do find Croc’s hidden lair and the broken neck collar that lead to his defeat by Batman in Arkham Asylum. The savage meat eater makes a quick return in Batman: Arkham City if you know where to find him. After defeating Ra’s al Ghul and getting his blood sample, head back the way you came from in the sewers and you’ll run into a gate blocking your exit. Throw a remote controlled batarang at the button behind the open passage and out pops Croc. His appearance is similar to that in Arkham Asylum, as are his death threats to Batman about devouring his corpse in the near future. Gotta love the guy’s enthusiasm.
Black Mask IS in Arkham City after all
The very first trailer for Batman: Arkham City (not the cinematic teaser) had a brief snapshot of Gotham crime lord, Black Mask, getting pummeled by Hugo Strange’s personal elite Tyger guards. Fans thought he was a sure lock to have a strong presence in the game after seeing that he was actually set to appear and not just a wild rumor.
Well, it seems that that exact image of him seen in the trailer is his only actual moment in Arkham City. At the very beginning of the game when you are controlling Bruce Wayne and proceed to get in line with the rest of the inmates, on your right is the notorious Black Mask, alive and kicking. Actually it’s the guards attacking him who do the kicking after he threatens them with a chair.
Once the helpless villain is on the ground, uttering insults while repeatedly getting hit, the sense of disappointment begins to settle in. A war brewing in Arkham City is perfect territory for a character like Black Mask and it’s a shame he wasn’t given more screen time, especially since his alter ego’s Sionis Industries buildings occupy a large portion of the city where Joker himself resides in. Nonetheless, the fact he’s actually in the game is still worthwhile of mention.
Harley’s having a baby!
If you return to the Steel Mill after completing the game, some goons gossip about Joker’s supposed death and that he could possibly still be alive. Up in the office area where Harley’s outfit from Batman: Arkham Asylum is on display, right next to it lays a pregnancy test that shows a positive sign very clearly. This is major implication that Harley is in fact pregnant with her boyfriend’s child, and that idea alone can lead to untold possibilities available for the next game in the series. On top of all that, during the credits you can listen to Harley singing her own version of a classic lullaby. Is it true? Can we be fighting baby Joker in the next game?
The secret hatch
In the Industrial District where the two cranes overlook the icy water below, there’s a boat that has a hidden hatch on it. No indication of being able to open it is apparent, but once you pull out your trusty device and attempt to hack it do you realize that this secret was meant to be hidden for a reason. After a difficult security level to bypass, a passage opens below that leads to a first-person perspective of the ship’s contents. A creepy atmosphere is instantly the first thing that’s noticeable, along with the crawling insects that are scattered around the walls and incased in containers for exanimation.
An unknown person, who looks to be one of Joker’s men, is seated in a chair at the end of the vessel. Once you get closer the man suddenly begins to writhe and croak in pain before he lifelessly slumps back into his seat. The only clue of whose boat this belongs to is the invoice slip that is posted on a wall that states it’s owned by Carmine Falcone’s shipping company. The real question is what individual used this boat and for what reason. Scarecrow’s a good guess, since his schemes usually involve sinister scare tactics that can kill someone through the overdose of fear toxin.
Using the Crypographic Sequencer to uncover radio broadcasts was begging to be utilized for discovering unmarked recordings, and sure enough, Rocksteady laid seeds for future confrontations with anonymous villains by leaving cryptic messages to decode. If you tune to some stations that list a bunch of numbers in order that’s followed by a chime sound, this is one of the three hidden sentences meant specifically for the Dark Knight. Here is each station and the corresponding decoded message that comes with it.
5 15 9 7 21 18 18 14 3 5 24 15 12 7 22 3 10 5 15 9 22 3 8 25 26 15 16 25 10 15 17 25
Decoded as: “YOU WILL PAY FOR WHAT YOU HAVE DONE TO ME”
9 23 9 12 12 18 5 20 21 18 14 2 1 20 13 1 14
Decoded as: “I WILL RETURN, BATMAN”
3 20 26 18 26 16 24 1 11 4 24 9 3 8 5 2 12 18 6 16 7 11 3 10 17 5 13 4 21 8
Decoded as: “I AM YOUR DARKEST NIGHTMARE DARK KNIGHT. GOTHAM WAITS FOR HIS SAVIOR.”
All of them are incredibly deceiving since almost every villain of the Bat has a grudge against him after being defeated for the hundredth time, so the idea of one in particular returning for vengeance doesn’t narrow it done too well. Ra’s al Ghul maybe, especially since he’s practically immortal thanks to his Lazarus Pits. Hush is also a good guess judging by the note his cameo appearance ends on.
For those who bought the game and got the Catwoman DLC free, you’ll know how much fun it is playing as the ferocious feline. She’s the complete opposite of the Dark Knight and using her in combat or slinking around enemies is smooth and extremely responsive. Before going into an unrelated tangent on the beauty of controlling Catwoman, it’s worth pointing out her character specific alternative ending.
At the end of her last mission she must decide whether she helps her partner in crime from a pile of rubble or to ditch him for two suitcases full of very shiny (but never seen) loot. All feminists and selfish minded individuals probably chose the latter, which has Selina walking away into Gotham carrying with her the retirement funds she just stole from Strange.
Credits roll and you can hear Barbara Gordon (a.k.a. Oracle) sending out a distress call for any type of help possible. In her panicked broadcast she mentions that Batman is dead along with her father, and that Joker’s forces have taken over Wayne Manor. Doesn’t sound like a pretty picture, but thank God for the rewind button which the game applies right at the time that you wished you would have too.
I think that just about does it, at least for now. As we keep playing though I’m sure we’ll discover more hidden goodies that Rocksteady has so graciously sprinkled throughout.
Did we miss any secrets or easter eggs? Let us know in the comments.