Batman: Arkham Knight is the final game of Rocksteady’s main Arkham trilogy of games and boy is it going out with a bang. Arkham Knight is by far the most ambitious and impressive game of the Arkham trilogy, bringing the series to new heights (quite literally). From the huge, breathtaking open-world map to inventive new gameplay, accompanied by some of the best graphics I have seen on consoles in a long time, Arkham Knight is almost perfect. That is, if you aren’t a PC owner.

Combat in Arkham Knight remains much the same as it was before. Fluid and satisfying as ever, attack combos can be executed with the correct button presses at the correct time in order to take down groups of enemies at a time. The upgrade system offers a constant stream of new combos, however, you are often aided with on-screen prompts to assist you in making the most of your attacks. If that isn’t enough from you, Batman’s usual host of high-tech gadgets are available for you to weave into your combat and takedown strategies.

One of the biggest new features in Arkham Knight is the presence of the Batmobile. The Batmobile is the driving force behind navigation of the large open-world map of Gotham. However, the Batmobile can also transform into a hovering tank upon entering battle mode. This allows you to battle enemies using a host of built-in gadgets and projectile weapons. Many puzzles in the game also involve use of the Batmobile, thanks to the presence of The Riddler. In my opinion, the introduction of the Batmobile is a breath of fresh air in the Arkham series. Gameplay involving the Batmobile is incredibly fun and watching Batman dive from a building into the Batmobile hatch is incredibly cool.

Another interesting addition to Arkham Knight is crime scene investigation. New gadgets allows Batman to analyse evidence and leads, scan bodies and survey environments for useful information. The mechanics are very simplistic, however, they can be a lot of fun to use as they are something different to what we are used to from the Arkham series. Diversity seems to have been the goal for Rocksteady when developing the game.

We mentioned earlier that the upgrade system offers a stream of new combat moves, however, this is not the sole offering of the system. You are also able to upgrade your gadgets, Batmobile and Batsuit, each having their own upgrade trees. By the time you have unlocked everything, you will have a vast range of devices, enhancements and button combinations at your disposal to experiment with and enjoy. The upgrade system is fueled by earning experience points from battling enemies. Adept use of combat combos and hit multipliers will award you with more XP.

The open-world map of Gotham in Arkham Knight feels vibrant and full of life. The neon-rich, dense, rainy environment is beautiful to behold and truly sucks you in. The missions and side quests are scattered across the map, with more options becoming available as you complete each mission. You are often given a number of options to explore and can choose to address them in any order which pleases you. This system feels intuitive and each quest feels relevant to the overall story. I am happy to report that Rocksteady have used very little filler content over the course of the game’s story.

Both console versions of the game look incredible. Apart from some minor issues with Batman’s facial movements, the rest of the game looks utterly incredible. The breathtaking visuals will immerse you into the living world of Gotham through the vivid, clear textures, outstanding rain effects and vibrant, neon lighting. The game plays at a smooth 30 frames per second on consoles and framerate drops are very rare. Rocksteady have done an outstanding job with squeezing the most of the Playstation 4 and Xbox One, however, the same cannot be said for the PC version. As it stands, the PC version is unplayable for most gamers and is inferior to the console versions. However, patches are beginning to improve the performance of the PC version and Warner Bros have committed to fully fixing the PC version of the game.

Overall, Batman: Arkham Knight delivers a captivating experience which I couldn’t put down. The game has incredible depth and is very difficult to fault. It is a worthy conclusion of the fantastic Arkham series and, in my opinion, has surpassed its predecessors and is the best of the trilogy. From the thrilling, inventive gameplay to the gripping story, supported by spectacular graphics, sound and voice acting, Arkham Knight is a must play and is one of the best games currently available on the PS4 and Xbox One. I highly recommend all gamers experience the title, however, it would be best to stick to the console versions for now!