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Batman: Arkham City Passes The ESRB Trial With A “T”

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The ESRB published their rating for Batman: Arkham City last night. The game received a “T” rating, which isn’t too much of a surprise. You won’t find anything overly crazy in the ESRB summary either; this is a Batman game, after all. Some of the dialogue is interesting though:

 

This is an action-adventure game featuring characters from the Batman franchise. Players assume the role of Batman as he investigates Arkham City, a neighborhood overrun by psychopathic criminals and former prison inmates. As players explore the city and infiltrate hideouts, they punch and kick criminals in melee-style combat, using various gadgets (e.g., explosive gel, smoke pellets, a grappling gun) to defend themselves against gun-wielding thugs and villains. The frenetic combat is highlighted by cries of pain, punching sounds, realistic gunfire, and slow-motion effects. In some sequences, players must solve puzzles or use stealth to incapacitate enemies and free hostages; when players fail a challenge, the hostage will lose his life. Some environments contain bloodstains on the floor or furniture; other cutscenes depict spots of blood on injured characters.

 

During the course of the game, some female characters are dressed in form-fitting outfits that expose large amounts of cleavage; one background sign depicts the silhouette of a woman and the words “Live Nude.” The dialogue also contains some suggestive references (e.g., “The anger, the frustration, the hints of repressed sexual tension” and “Sure could go for some porn right now.”). One sequence depicts a character smoking a cigar, and there are various references to alcohol (e.g., “She got a little drunk and killed her classmates,” “I’d give anything for a nice cold beer right now.”). The words “b*tch,” “a*s,” and “bastard” can be heard in dialogue.

 

I do wonder who “She got a little drunk and killed her classmates” refers to. Do we know anyone of the sort associated with Batman’s rogues gallery, or perhaps it’s just a reference to some random gang member?

Ishaan Sahdev
Ishaan specializes in game design/sales analysis. He's the former managing editor of Siliconera and wrote the book "The Legend of Zelda - A Complete Development History". He also used to moonlight as a professional manga editor. These days, his day job has nothing to do with games, but the two inform each other nonetheless.