Rocksteady Studios is set to release the final game in their Arkham trilogy and once Batman’s behind them, they’ll surely have plenty of free time on their hands. Since they’ve done very well using comic books as their medium, here are a few superheroes that deserve the Rocksteady treatment.
5) Hulk: Planet Hulk
It’s rare to see a video game based on an actual comic book story: Marvel: Ultimate Alliance 2 attempted to recreate the genius storyline of Marvel: Civil War, but fell a little flat. Imagine Rocksteady hiring Greg Pak to turn his landmark Planet Hulk and World War Hulk into a video game. The opening scene would be seen through the eyes of Bruce Banner, trapped in a space ship with a little television blinking on, Reed Richards and Tony Stark are there explaining to Banner why he needs to be shot into space. Cut to his ship crash-landing on Sakaar and being taken as a slave to fight in the arena as a gladiator.
The more he fights, the more his popularity grows, so he becomes very interesting to the faction that wants to overthrow the Red King. This would be the Hulk game that Hulk lovers deserve, just a whole bunch of Hulk Smash until you overthrow the Red King and get back to Earth. Once that happens the play would be able to fight the Avengers off as the Hulk. I’m already clearing a spot on my shelf for this game.
4) The Punisher: Welcome Back Frank
The Punisher’s had some time in the limelight in recent years, two movies and a video game voiced by Thomas Jane isn’t too shabby. I think he needs another game though, and the perfect set up for the game would be Garth Ennis’ Welcome Back Frank storyline. In it, Frank Castle’s back from the dead and doesn’t have a penny or gun to his name. He has to start up a base of operations in New York City and take out the mob boss. This lends perfectly to video games seeing as you always need to start with nothing and slowly grow to the massive killing machine with the skull on his chest.
Rocksteady was smooth enough to nab Paul Dini to write two the Arkham games, so I don’t see why they couldn’t nab Ennis as well to pen some of his signature dialogue. I’d also like to see Thomas Jane again as the voice of Frank Castle just to tie it all together. Add in the run-and-gun you see in hits like Gears of War and Resident Evil and you have a solid foundation for another great series of games.
3) Green Arrow: The Island
Oliver Queen’s one of the most popular superheroes right now thanks to television’s Arrow, so why shouldn’t he have a game of his own? Rocksteady could steal a little bit from the newest Tomb Raider and start when Ollie is marooned on the island, showing how the rough terrain turned him into a superhero after beginning as a pompous entitled brat. You’d survive in the island for a bit until you are rescued, that’s when the fun starts.
As a player, you’ll be able to create Ollie’s crime fighting team with his fortune and your smarts. Slowly cleaning the streets of Star City and opening up bases for you to recuperate in and have munitions. This game would play a little more like Assassins Creed by unlocking areas of the city and making them be under your control. Of course, we’d have to see some baddies right, so why not link the Arkham series to this one and toss in Deathstroke and Ras Al Ghul just to makes this a little interesting. Get Jeff Lemire to pen the story and you’ve got one bullseye of a game.
2) Kick A**
Mark Millar’s one of the most off the wall, violent as hell comic book writers to date, his style would blend very well with a video game. I think that the transition from high school student to Kick A** would be a great on to experience on consoles. They could go the route of Persona and have the game take place in high school where you’re making friends who could possibly join Kick A** in the streets. Then have the other portion of the game take place in the nitty gritty streets where all the action takes place.
The nostalgic gamer in me thinks that going the Final Fight route with these sections would probably be for the best, just with a lot less visible pixels and different character designs. Rocksteady would be able to play great homage to the comic book and to those old side-scrolling games, especially with the new generation. Toss in cutscenes written by Millar and designed by John Romita Jr. and we have a comic book video game masterpiece.
1) Superman: Fortress of Solitude
For being the very first superhero, Superman hasn’t really gotten any love in the game industry. The last game that donned his name that was any good was the very game where he died – The Death of Superman. EA’s Superman Returns had a few good ideas to it, since Superman is invincible, why not make Metropolis damageable and once the city’s destroyed, you lose the game. While that looked good on paper, the game was only passively fun to play and so boringly repetitive that you lose interest after the first level you beat.
Should Rocksteady decide to go the Man of Steel route they could easily make a great Superman game that mimicks the Arkham series. They could introduce Superman in his Fortress of Solitude, playing with Krypto when the containment breaks on the Phantom Zone prison. The Fortress goes into lock-down and Superman must find and defeat all the villains he has cast into the zone. Zod, being the ringleader would be the hardest to beat, and would know all about the Kryptonian technology in the Fortress. I’m thinking he could use that technology to dull Superman’s powers in certain areas in the Fortress.
To fix the problems in areas, Superman would use his “Reporter’s Intuition” to find hints to stop Zod’s dulling of his powers. As you unlock each part of the Fortress, Superman would become more and more powerful until his final battle with Zod. Sounds like a pretty good template for a Superman game to me.
What about you? What superhero do you want Rocksteady to tackle next? Share your thoughts with us down in the comments below!