Danger was stirring in the shadows of the quiet GOTHAM CITY night. BATMAN was no stranger to the night-shrouded streets of Gotham...Nor to the dangers they hid. But on this particular night, he knew the hazards he was about to face were greater than usual. He would sum up the trouble in two very deadly words: THE JOKER! The CLOWN PRINCE OF CRIME was on another mad rampage, beginning with a raid on the GOTHAM CITY MUSEUM. Though The Joker had made good his escape, the Dark Knight was hot on his trail. He might have even caught the mad criminal genius before went to ground if not for the woman The Joker had left bound to a ticking bomb on the roof of the Museum! Batman freed her...mere seconds before the bomb blasted the Museum to a pile of flaming ruins! But the woman was a witness...and she had all the information Batman needed, directing him to The Joker's current location: the GOTHAM CITY BRIDGE. There, the Joker had prepared a trap for the CAPED CRUSADER. Maybe The Joker just got too cocky, but the trap he sprung for Batman backfired and the criminal clown wound up falling from the bridge. Batman tried to save him, but The Joker chose death over dishonor and plummeted to the watery abyss far below. Then things really got crazy as the rest of Gotham City's criminals rushed in to fill the void left by The Joker's death! Now, utilizing every weapon and supercharged machine at his disposal, Batman must combat the criminal hordes threatening Gotham's peace...all the while trying to discover the identity of the unseen enemy plotting to plunge Gotham City to a fiery death!
--From the GBA Batman Vengeance instruction manual.
Batman has been a part of American pop culture since before the Second World War. During his long reign as one of the most popular American heroes, Batman has fought crime across virtually every different media platform. Batman has been reintroduced to each generation in a different fashion. From comic books, to movies, to campy TV shows, Batman evolves each time he is resurrected. One of the most popular of Batman's reintroductions was as an cartoon in the ever popular Saturday morning cartoon lineup. Luckily, the cartoon rendition of Batman is the version that has made its way to the Gameboy Advance in "Batman Vengeance". The cartoon graphic style is easily recreated on the Gameboy Advance, and the game looks very similar to the animated show. "Batman Vengeance" has impressive graphics and sound, and keeps the game fresh by using a variety of play modes.
"Batman Vengeance" appears to be a side-scrolling platform jumper at first glance, but the side-scrolling levels are only a fraction of the game. During the side-scrolling stages, Batman must make his way across the level, avoiding pitfalls, and battling the joker's minions. The side-scrolling levels are fairly challenging and fun to play. The side-scrolling mode's quick pace is maintained by giving the player a chance to continue upon death, immediately respawning the player at a checkpoint. The technique helps prevent frustration from falling into the same pit repeatedly because the player can quickly get to the segment of the stage that they expired on. You would think that this would make the game incredibly easy, but it does not, as a matter of fact, if the player wasn't given the option to immediately respawn mid-level, the game would be exceptionally difficult and not nearly as fun.
The player must also navigate over-head, block moving, puzzle levels, which are quite fun and require some thought. The player gets to control Robin to complete the puzzle levels, which occur randomly throughout the game. The player also gets to drive the Batmobile through "Spy Hunter" inspired levels. The Batmobile levels feature a short time limit, making them one of the most challenging modes in the game. The player must dodge obstacles, hit jumps, and beat the clock to progress through the levels. The Batmobile isn't the only Bat vehicle that that makes an appearance in "Batman Vengeance", the player also get the chance to soar high above Gotham city in the Batplane, where Batman fights the Joker's Zepplin. The different modes of play make appearances according to the players progress. Each mode of "Batman Vengeance" feels as though it could almost stand alone as the sole mode of play, each mode has different weapons, gadgets, and controls, providing depth and preventing the modes from feeling like mini-games.
"Batman Vengeance" is perhaps the most solid Batman game on the market, other the "Arkham Asylum" series (which is limited to the newer generation of consoles). "Batman Vengeance" has great cut scenes, gameplay, sound effects, graphics, and variety. This is a different kind of Batman than the Dark Knight, and is definitely kid appropriate. While it might be modeled after the Saturday morning cartoons, don't dismiss "Batman Vengeance" as a kids game, or you might be missing out on one of the best super hero games available.
"Batman Vengeance" features over 21 levels, with several different play modes assigned to various levels according to the plot. There are four different modes of play in all.
Side-scrolling stages appear in levels 1, 2, 9, 12, 15, 17, and 18. The player will guide Batman through these levels in a 2-D side view. Batman has a health bar in the upper left hand corner, when the bar is drained Batman will die, but be given a chance to continue. Batman must fight and jump his way to the end of the stage to complete the level. Batman has Batarangs, Smoke bombs, and Health bottles at his disposal in his inventory. Though Batman's items are limited, extra quantities can be found throughout the stages hidden in wooden barrels. Break the barrels with an attack to collect the item.
Batplane stages appear in levels, 5, 13, and 21. The Batplane stages are forced, side-scrolling levels. The Batplane can shoot projectiles, and temporarily become invincible by using an electric shield. The projectiles are limitless, and shoot as fast as the player can push the button, while the shield operates on a meter that drains when the shield power is used, and refills slowly over time.
The Batmobile stages appear in levels 3, 8, and 11. The stages are presented in an overhead view. Batman can shoot an unlimited number of projectiles while in the Batmobile. The player must accelerate through the level before the timer expires. If the timer expires, the level will be failed, forcing the player to start over.
The puzzle stages appear in levels 6, 7, and 14. The player solves the puzzles stages while playing as Robin, Batman's trusty sidekick. During the puzzle stages Robin must fight enemies, drag objects to clear a path, use a Batcrawler, and unlock doors using passwords. Robin has a health meter that, when depleted, will fail the mission.
There are also a number of boss stages that appear in levels 4, 10, 16, 19, and 20. The player will fight bosses as Batman, equipped with various gadgets.
"Batman Vengeance" also features an ADVANCED mode that can only be accessed after the normal mode has been completed. The ADVANCED mode allows the player to replay all of the levels except the boss levels. The level objections will be different than in the normal mode, usually requiring Batman to collect a certain amount of objects and clear the stage before the time runs out.
"Batman Vengeance" recalls progress by utilizing a password system.
|Up||Move / Climb / Move elevator / Look Steer|
|Down||Move / Crouch / Drop (while hanging) / Move elevator|
|A Button||Jump / Glide / Hook ride / Punch / Accelerate / Shoot|
|B Button||Punch / Move boxes|
|R Button||Use item / Shoot|
|L Button||Toggle items|