Batman: The Enemy Within - Episode 1: The Enigma - Xbox One Review


I have played numerous Telltale Games titles over the years, and there are certain trends I have noticed along the way. Usually the first and penultimate episodes tend to drag a bit, for example. While I cannot yet speak for the latter scenario, I have to say I was very impressed with how  Batman: The Enemy Within - Episode 1: The Enigma kicks things off.

As longtime Batman fans might suspect, the title here points to the Riddler joining the story. Now, I have never been much of a Riddler person myself. Growing up I always saw him as kind of a whiny, non-physical threat for Batman, and while he was often portrayed as clever, he came across as a somewhat goofy, non-threatening antagonist.

That being said, this version of the Riddler is a far more threatening one. He uses his hooked cane to vicious ends in combat, seems as though he can take a punch, and has a rather Jigsaw from Saw style of approach to his mind games. I had some concerns about the effectiveness of the Riddler as a primary foil when I first heard about season two, but I am happy to say those concerns have been effectively quelled by the events in this first episode.


If you happened to read my earlier reviews of the first season, I came away impressed with how Telltale Games took a familiar hero and his rogue gallery and managed to shake things up. Expected allies became enemies, and enemies came in flavors that were both a little familiar and at the same time fresh. It was quite the accomplishment and frankly the story went from strength to strength last season, and already season two is kicking off in very similar fashion.

While the actual formula that Telltale Games uses for their adventure titles has not changed a whole lot here - you essentially alternate between moving from one scene to another with the occasional call to walk around and interact with some specific items in your environment while making action and dialogue choices that impact how the story and characters play out - Batman does a better job than most at varying up the types of events you will be performing. For one, the quicktime events are somewhat more complicated than most of the Telltale Games titles. Instead of simply pressing a face button, many times that is coupled with a trigger or directional push while events happen in rapid fire succession. It is never really hard, I don't believe I failed a single one in this episode, yet it helps to convey a bit more of the 'action' side of Batman's persona.


Batman is also known as the World's Greatest Detective and traditionally has a lot of toys at his disposal. Once again these alternate traits are handled pretty well through scenes where you have to control a drone to survey the area or perhaps have to spend time looking at clues in a scene to put together what had taken place earlier in the story. These help to create a more well-rounded representation of a superhero who is as well known for his mind as his physical skills.

One of the only drawbacks for me in this episode was how Bruce Wayne felt just a bit less well represented than he could have been. In season one, Bruce Way's dilemmas were often just as important as Batman's - maybe even more. There was a sort of crisis of faith that Bruce Wayne struggled with from the very first episode last season, and while there were touches of it in this episode, and I can see the potential for an even more emotional and involved tale for Bruce Wayne, outside of two scenes in particular, The Enigma felt more like Batman's adventure.

All in all, I think  Batman: The Enemy Within - Episode 1: The Enigma is getting season two off to a great start. I am already interested in seeing how several of the characters develop, and Telltale Games continues to play to the strengths of this series that they established during season one. If you were a fan of the prior season, rest assured you are getting more of the same with this release.


Game Information

Platform:
Xbox One
Developer(s):
Telltale Games
Publisher(s):
Telltale Games
Genre(s):
Adventure
Mode(s):
Single Player
Other Platform(s):
PC
PlayStation 4

Source:
Provided by Publisher




Article by Nick
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