Owners of the Xbox One and PS4 who’d expected to play Batman: Arkham Knight on June 2nd find themselves in a very awkward situation this morning. For the second time in as many calendar years there’s a new Batman: Arkham Knight release date.
Warner Brothers, Batman: Arkham Knight’s publisher, announced the new Batman: Arkham Knight release date in a simple post on its Twitter feed this morning. Instead of picking up Batman Arkham Knight on June 2nd, Xbox One, PS4 and PC users can expect the game to launch on June 23rd. That’s roughly a three-week delay.
Usually, a delay of a three weeks isn’t terrible. Delays allow the developer to work out any bugs they’re seeing long before the game arrives on store shelves. In an industry where some don’t show that courtesy to gamers, it’s much appreciated. The problem is that Batman: Arkham Knight was originally scheduled for release last fall. It was going to be a system seller, an easy way for Microsoft and Sony to convince Xbox 360 and PS3 users to upgrade to the Xbox One and PS4.
Delaying a game once is bad enough. Delaying a game twice hints at a problem with either development or marketing. Which is the case here remains unclear. What we do know is that excitement for this game is at an all-time high.
We are pleased to announce our new release date – Batman: Arkham Knight will officially launch worldwide on 06.23.15 pic.twitter.com/3XEBhghpK6
— Batman Arkham (@BatmanArkham) March 23, 2015
A trailer release today only serves to build that hype even more. Titled “Officer Down”, this new Batman: Arkham Knight trailer doesn’t focus on cut scenes or include developers talking about things we’ve only gotten short glimpses at. Instead, it’s 7 minutes and 41 seconds of actual Batman: Arkham Knight footage taken directly from the PS4 versions of the game.
In the trailer, players talk to Police Commissioner Jim Gordon about the situation in Gotham as armed thugs and criminals overrun his forces. Batman appears out of nowhere just below the rooftop-mounted Bat signal. He assess the situation and tells Gordon to order his men to stay out of the way. When Gordon turns his back, Batman disappears just like he does in the Batman television shows and movies.
Batman immediately contacts Oracle, getting her to triangulate where a cop car is so that he can save to vulnerable members of the GCPD. In past games players had to grapple and then launch themselves off rooftops to quickly move between different locations. To “even the odds” as he puts it, Batman summons the Batmobile that we first got a lot look at last year. In the game users will be able to send a signal to the Batmobile telling it where to show up. We see Batman use more than a few missiles to chase down attackers in the game. Batman: Arkham Knight will be the first time gamers have been able to use the Batmobile in the series.
To be clear, anyone who already has a pre-order will have their pick up day moved to June 23rd. In the meantime, users can still continue to slowly pay on their pre-orders with no problem. A standard version of Batman: Arkham Knight for Xbox One and PS4 costs $59.99 and includes some extra mission content at GameStop. GameStop will also carry Batman: Arkham Knight Batmobile Edition. For $199 users get the content free with a pre-order, an exclusive character skin pack, a limited edition comic book, a steel case for their game an 80 page art book and a statue of the Batmobile that transforms like the one in the game. A third version of the game with the extra content, but without the Batmobile statue will sell for $99.