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Are you going to buy an Xbox One X This Holiday Season?

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Game Profile
Game Boy
GENRE: Action
October 27, 2003
Lego Batman 2: DC Super Heroes

Gotham City Impostors

Batman: Arkham City

Batman: Arkham City

Batman: Arkham City

More in this Series
 Written by D'Marcus Beatty  on December 04, 2003

Review: I am Batman!

Generally, superhero games aren't really that super. Games of this genre rarely, if ever, give players the feeling of actually identifying with the superhero represented, of allowing the person to live a day in the life of their favorite comic-book hero. Truthfully, games in this genre are more likely to be a generic action game with the licensed hero's face painted on the protagonist. Batman: Rise of Sin Zsu attempts to defeat this failing, and makes a commendable effort, but unfortunately falls short, just as ninety percent of all games based on a famous license.


Batman: Rise of Sin Tzu does have a couple of things going for it. Primarily, the character of Sin Tzu was created by Jim Lee, a legendary and revered comic artist and creator. Sin Tzu is a hunter/warrior, much like Kraven of Spiderman fame, who is looking for a challenge and decides that perhaps Batman can offer him the sport that he is looking for. Sin Tzu was created by Jim Lee solely for use in this game (and its console counterparts), and is definitely a step in the right direction for license-video game relations. However, even the Lee-created character leaves the GBA version of Rise of Sin Tzu a dry experience for gamers.


B:RoST does boast lovely graphics with very well animated characters. Batman is done justice (no pun intended for fans of Justice League) here, as his movements are fluid and graceful, much like the character himself. However, beyond the graphical engine, the game offers very little to keep players entertained. Batman is a master of many forms of martial arts, but in the game he is very limited in his repertoire of moves. When compared to its console brethren, who not only boast more moves, but also the choice of three other characters, Batman GBA offers very little in the way of variety. Batman basically has one primary attack, although he does have access to his batarang, gas pellets, flash bombs, and bat cables.


However, since players must hold down a button to access Batman's accessories, the utility belt isn't quite as handy as it should be. Players attempting to whip out the batarang to teach a young hood a lesson must be quite a distance away to allow for the charge time, and then the hood must be within range of the GBA's small, portable screen, of which is slightly longer than the batarang's range.? Together, this means that there is only a small margin of error when trying to use anything other than Batman's standard attack.


There is also the combo move, which is a super attack that Batman can use after filling a combo meter. This move, though powerful, is little more than a pre-set animation sequence that distances the player from the game. Gamers should have been given more control here instead of just allowing them to choose when to activate the move.


There are a lot of platform elements to the gameplay, which isn't necessarily bad. However, some of the elements of gameplay are ridiculously implemented for stretching out the game and take the Dark Knight out of character. One thing that was particularly poorly done were some of the puzzles, such as Batman having to find a timed switch, activate it, then rush to enter to opened chain-link fence before the time runs out. The Batman that most gamers are familiar with, however, would more than likely just climb the fence rather than foolishly rushing to beat a timed gate release.


Finally, the most frustrating thing about Rise of Sin Tzu is the lack of a save system. Each new area offers players a passcode to allow them to return to the area later. This means a lot of stop-and-go for players to write down their passwords. This game (like almost all games since the 16-bit generation) really should've abandoned the password system for some type of save system.

Bottom Line
Batman: Rise of Sin Tzu really isn't a bad game, although it cannot be called very innovative or good either. It provides a mediocre gaming experience for Batman fans. Pick this title up only if you really love Batman, or you really love action platformers.

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