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Gotham Knights Fans Hate Red Hood's 'Magic Powers'

Gotham Knights Fans Hate Red Hood's 'Magic Powers'
Warner Bros. Montreal | DC Comics

Written by 

Tom Chapman

Posted 

11th May 2022 14:55

There ain't no family like a Bat-Family, and as we get a first real look at Gotham Knights, a spandex-clad quartet is coming into vision. As a spiritual successor to Rocksteady's Arkham trilogy, Arkham Origins' Warner Bros. Montreal is hoping to deliver a very different story that won't just focus on the Dark Knight.

Set in a downtrodden Gotham City where Bruce Wayne has supposedly died (yeah, we're not buying it either), it's over to Tim Drake, Dick Grayson, Jason Todd, and Barbara Gordon to save the city in their respective roles as Robin, Nightwing, Red Hood, and Batgirl. The first Gotham Knights gameplay reveal gave us plenty to talk about, but unfortunately, not all of it is good.

Why Does Everyone Hate Red Hood?

In an action-packed 15-minute showcase, we got up close and personal with Nightwing and Red Hood. Those who played Rocksteady's games will be used to leaping into action as Grayson, and it was all pretty standard fodder with his electrical Escrima Sticks. We also saw Nightwing fly across the rooftops with his own Breath of the Wild-inspired glider that wouldn't have looked out of place in the Arkham trilogy.

When it came to Red Hood's traversal, players were less convinced. Following the comics, Todd was killed by Joker and then resurrected by the Lazarus Pit. The writers have awkwardly reworked this into Gotham Knights, with Red Hood able to leap around the sky using a sort of magic shield as stepping stones. It's very Doctor Strange but doesn't quite fit here.

The Twitterverse was soon mocking Red Hood's newfound abilities that don't even appear in the comics. "Red Hood got resurrected with magic flying double jump powers, but Batman is 'dead'," moaned one, while another added, "I love how Gotham Knights has the same problem as The Avengers game in that the design requires every character to have equal traversal capabilities so you get sh*t like 'Red Hood has a magic jump'." A third pointed out that we had a perfect way of getting around if we'd simply featured his rocket boots from the comics. 

 

Can Gotham Knights Improve?

Given Red Hood's fan-favourite status in the comics and expanded media like 2010's Batman: Under the Red Hood animated movie, it's a bummer he's gone straight from being Gotham Knight's potential coolest to its potential lamest character. Others hated that Red Hood's brutal edge has been taken away due to him now using non-lethal rounds. His comic book counterpart is known for being a bloody killer, and while we get Gotham Knights is going for a family-friendly approach, it's another big no for many.

Elsewhere, there were complaints about the sometimes janky fighting style. Maybe we were spoiled by the free-flowing action of the Arkham games and what Insomniac Games has been able to do with Marvel's Spider-Man. For critics of these sometimes grainy graphics, there should be good news in the form of a new-gen only release that should hopefully sharpen things up a little. Either way, there's no denying Gotham Knights could improve. Remembering how divisive Todd's inclusion in Arkham Knight was, maybe a great video game version of him just isn't meant to be.