Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment has had a huge blockbuster franchise on their hands with the Batman: Arkham series, and it's obvious they aren't going to let it fall by the wayside. Well, some new rumors suggest that there's a new game in the works that may move the franchise forward.
Kotaku is reporting that there's possibly a new game in the works from WB Montreal Studios, the development team behind the sometimes community-criticized Batman: Arkham Origins. The article notes that the team was originally supposed to be working on a Suicide Squad spin-off game that was a co-op game of sorts, but the higher-ups at Warner Bros., had it canned due to quality issues. The team has been rumored to be working on a new entry in the Batman franchise starring Bruce Wayne's long lost kid, Damian Wayne. While the rumor doesn't specifically state this game will be part of the Arkham franchise, that would seem to be most likely.
This is probably a shock to a lot of fans who came off Batman: Arkham Knight thinking that the game would instead focus on a character like the Red Hood or the Arkham Knight. In fact, it would have been awesome if WB Montreal had picked up where the last game had left off, and the Arkham Knight picks up the mantel of the savior Gotham, looking for redemption and forgiveness from the city after terrorizing it.
However, the Kotaku article points to the studio focusing on Damian Wayne instead, which may or may not be a smart move from Warner Bros. Damian is a lesser known character in the Batman mythos, being the son of Bruce and Talia Al Ghul. The conditions in which he was conceived were somewhat controversial, but Damian ends up becoming a top trained pupil under the guidance of Ra's Al Ghul and the League of Assassins. He eventually returns to Gotham to face his father, Bruce Wayne.
The game could technically go a number of different ways. They could spend the first tutorial phase in the game with Damian as a child, learning martial arts and getting good with gadgets, and then, later on, follow the Wayne heir when he gets older and becomes the new Robin.
If it's true that they really are working on the new Batman: Arkham game to follow the young Wayne, it seems like a truly missed opportunity to have focused on some of the more interesting threads introduced in Batman: Arkham Knight. For instance, one would have thought that The Order of St. Dumas could have become its own spin-off series and the next game could have focused on Azrael.
Additionally, there's Dick Grayson and Tim Drake who were frequently used throughout Rocksteady's Batman: Arkham games, but apparently, they won't be using their storylines either.
To be honest, there's really no telling how a game starring Damian Wayne might play out. It could really go either way. It just seems like a step backward to go in a completely different direction when there were so many other interesting playable characters in Batman: Arkham City and Batman: Arkham Knight that they could have focused on instead.
This also brings into question where in the timeline this will take place? The Kotaku article seems to hint at the new game from WB Montreal following closer to the events that transpired at the end of Batman: Arkham Origins as opposed to what happened at the end of Batman: Arkham Knight. For now, this is all just a rumor, and we'll have to wait to see how it all unfolds.