Ever since a Southern California company by the name of Specular Interactive was discovered to be behind the arcade racing title H2Overdrive, they have been on our map. I had a chance to visit their offices back in 2011 to get a hands-on look at their second arcade title, Dirty Drivin‘ which was a fun experience. Dirty Drivin’ came to the scene about about 2 years after H2Overdrive did and it being 2013, its been two years since that made its way into arcades. The next game in their lineup is Batmobile, based upon the famous superhero driving machine from DC Comic’s Batman. Details have been found on it via an artist that has published a bunch of items about it online which you can see below.
One question that is sure to pop-up in just about everyone’s mind when they hear about this game is “Which Batmobile?”. Believe it or not, there have been so many variations of the Batmobile that there is a book about it as well as a website dedicated to the history of the vehicle since 1941. There is no “one” Batmobile and so Specular gives players choices from a selection of Batmobiles to drive but the exact roster is unknown at the moment. Some of those included are the Tumbler (from the recent Batman Begins/Dark Knight movies), the Tim Burton movies model and a few others as you can see from these pictures as found on the artist demo reel site.
As the Batmobile itself is a unique driving machine, the creators of this game have set about to create a unique experience among the many arcade driving game competitors out on the market. A vast majority of driving/racing games have been variations on either closed circuit or branched course races. Batmobile instead appears to be an open-world driving game where you receive objectives to complete including goals such as “Takedown 3 Arkham Bombers”, “Stop 4 Art Thieves”, “Take out 3 Bane’s Mercenaries” “Take out Tanker Trucks” “take down Nuclear transport primers”, etc. There are also boss battles, such as battling Mr. Freeze’s Freeze Mech. Various famous characters are found in the game – The Joker, Mr. Freeze, Bane, Penguin, all who have their schemes to make Gotham a living hell, unless Batman can stop them. From the video below, the game has a Chase HQ2 vibe to it, although with much faster action and weapons.
UPDATE: While the video was originally posted a while back, it was removed yesterday just a few hours after we reported it.
Here is some demo footage that has been discovered on an artists reel. The images above also came from this artist, Michael Tran. There’s no telling how “beta” these shots are – the video and screens were apparently posted this past April but we will be sure to share more as soon as we get it!
In terms of a Batman game in arcades, there were some efforts in the 90s that gave us Batman (Atari Games, 90) and Batman Forever (Acclaim, ’96). Both were scrolling fighters, which the general story of The Dark Knight fits into. In more recent times, his last appearance in an arcade title was GlobalVRs Justice League: Heroes United and there also was Stern Pinball’s Batman which was based upon the newer movies of Batman Begins and The Dark Knight. He has of course appeared it numerous console games, the Arkham Asylum and City games being the most recent. Out of all the Batman games I have played however, I don’t know of any where you are focusing exclusively on the Batmobile (yes there was Batman Returns on Sega CD which is close thanks to extended driving levels but there was also some platforming parts too). Until now of course.