How Gotham Knights Compares To Spider-Man Remastered
When a new superhero game is released, it’s inevitable that it’s going to be compared to classics like Marvel’s Spider-Man and the Batman: Arkham series, and Gotham Knights is no exception. With a focus on younger heroes exploring large cities, the two games perhaps have more in common than some others in the genre. That being said, the comparison isn’t always favorable for Gotham Knights.
Marvel’s Spider-Man and its Remastered rerelease is one of the most popular superhero games, made by Insomniac in 2018, and remastered in 2020 for the PS5 and 2022 on PC. Gotham Knights has only just released and is WB Games Montréal’s first Batman game since Arkham Origins released in 2013, though the Caped Crusader is not playable this time. Instead, four members of the Bat Family – Robin, Batgirl, Nightwing, and Red Hood – are playable, giving more variety than Spider-Man Remastered in terms of the number of available characters. Despite this, Marvel’s Spider-Man has the best version of Spider-Man, more than making up for the lack of variety.
Visually, both games are nothing to scoff at. Gotham Knights does feel slightly lackluster compared to Rocksteady’s Arkham Knight, which was massively ahead of its time. However, the interiors are where it shines, and these certainly reflect the visual style of most Gotham City depictions more than the outside spaces. Spider-Man Remastered is a graphical powerhouse, taking full advantage of being a souped-up version of Insomniac’s already visually impressive PS4 release. If Gotham Knights ever ends up receiving a similar remaster, it could be truly breathtaking.
Gotham Knights Lacks Spider-Man’s Level Of Polish
Where Gotham Knights really begins to flounder is its combat. Fighting even just common enemies feels as if the player is taking on great foes, because to call them damage sponges would be putting it lightly. Worse, Gotham Knights players can break Batman’s one rule of never killing anyone. Damage numbers popping up removes the immersion from the combat, and enemies being so bulky means that stealthy fighting is not possible in the same way that it is in Spider-Man Remastered. For a game made by the developers of an Arkham game, from a series which mastered stealthy combat, it’s a shame to see such a clear downgrade in that department.
Performance is another scenario where Spider-Man Remastered beats out Gotham Knights. Swinging around New York City feels incredibly smooth, with a consistent frame rate. The same cannot be said for Gotham Knights at all, with this perhaps being the game’s biggest problem. From a stuttering frame rate to a litany of glitches, the possibility of the game being rushed to release seems more likely with every newly discovered glitch, despite multiple launch delays. It also echoes the troubles Rocksteady had with Arkham Knight’s PC launch, and it doesn’t help that Gotham Knights was capped at 30 FPS by WB Games Montréal.
Unfortunately, Gotham Knights just doesn’t stack up with Insomniac’s Spider-Man Remastered. It also doesn’t stack up to other recent Batman games. Although some enjoyment can be found in Gotham Knights, especially for big fans of its playable characters, it’s not even close to being in the running with other titans of the superhero game genre.