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Video Game / Batman: Arkham VR

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Batman: Arkham VR is a Virtual Reality game taking place in the Batman: Arkham Series, after the Joker's plot in Batman: Arkham City, but before the events of Batman: Arkham Knight. Playing through the game, however, complicates its relation to the others in the series.

Controlling Batman, the player navigates their way through the Caped Crusader's investigation of Dick Grayson's (Nightwing) tragic murder and the disappearance of Tim Drake (Robin). It has been released for both Playstation VR and on PC (where it utilizes the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive instead).

The game provides examples of:

  • Absurdly-Spacious Sewer: The fourth section takes place in one of these, where Robin is being held captive by the Joker.
  • All Just a Dream: The murder of Bruce's parents in the prologue is just one of Bruce's nightmares. So is the whole game.
  • Alternate Universe: It is pretty much stated by Riddler to be this, especially given that Nightwing is alive during the events of Arkham Knight. That's because this game is actually just a nightmare Bruce is having.
  • Arc Number: 425, referencing the issue the Joker made his debut in.
    • One of the radio frequencies Batman can tune in on and receive a message in is 425 MHz.
    • The code to the coroner's vault is "425".
    • The number assigned for the crowbar Joker used to kill Jason Todd is 425-176.
    • The eskima stick recovered from Nightwing's murder is labeled 761-425.
    • Joe Chill's cell which is occupied by the Joker is listed as Cell #425.
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: Almost literally in the Joker's bio; among his serious crimes which do include arson, murder and the like, several smaller "crimes" are also brought up, like littering.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Nightwing didn't land a single hit on his murderer in their scuffle, who manages to break Dick's jaw, arm and ribs before finishing the fight with a neck snap.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death:
    • Batman can re-watch the death of Jason Todd in the Batcave, where Joker guns him down mid-sentence for answering a question Joker had asked.
    • Nightwing's jaw is shattered in one punch and he is easily beaten into a stain on the ground, topped off by him getting his arm broken. When he tries to grapple away as an escape, his line is sliced mid-flight and he plummets onto a railing, completely shattering every rib in his body. He's finally put out of his misery with a sickening, ruthless neck snap.
    • Robin is devoured head-first by Killer Croc while Batman is forced to watch.
  • Downer Ending: Batman's revealed to be the murderer, having his mind been taken control of by the Joker. Somewhat mitigated by the fact that this is just a nightmare Batman is suffering through.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: The Riddler chastises you for solving a Riddler Puzzle at the scene of Nightwing's murder, saying that you searching for trinkets is showing disrespect towards the departed.
  • Exact Words: While being interrogated, the Penguin tells Batman that the witness to Nightwing's murder said he knew Batman would be coming after him. As in to kill him too.
  • First-Person Ghost: Batman's model may appear full in mirrors, but normally, he seems to mostly just consist of two floating hands groping the map for the solutions to puzzles.
  • Foreshadowing: There are a few subtle indications that the entire game is just a nightmare Batman is having:
    • Any time an alarm sounds, regardless of context, it sounds exactly like the alarm clock you hear at the start of the game.
    • The song "Rock-a-Bye Baby" appears as a Recurring Riff, including the piano sheet music, Martha's music box, on the local news radio station, and during the coroner's reports, as well as Joker singing a twisted version of it during the ending if you achieve 100% Completion.
    • The voices faintly audible inside Arkham Asylum all come from the nightmare/flashback to the Waynes' murder.
    • The "Unknown Transmission" you can find using the Batcave's radio scanner is a voice reading off a sequence of numbers; if you translate them into letters using the Caesar cypher, it reads "WAKE UP BRUCE".
    • One of the things written on the Room Full of Crazy's walls is "Inception".
    • When you conduct a High-Altitude Interrogation on the Penguin, he screams "WAKE UP YOU IDIOT!"; while one might think this is directed at the Mooks Batman knocked out, the fact that he uses the singular rather than the plural suggests he's yelling at Batman himself.
    • And of course, the not-so-subtle facts that the game ends with Nightwing and Robin dead (the former killed by Batman himself) and Batman seemingly locked in Arkham and/or losing control of his mind to the Joker, all of which directly contradicts Arkham Knight.
  • The Fourth Wall Will Not Protect You: Almost said word-for-word by the Riddler, who has become so intelligent he's realized he's not fighting Batman - he's fighting the player.
    The Riddler: It was you, wasn't it? Behind every humiliation, the author of EVERY defeat! I suppose you thought your precious "fourth wall" would protect you.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: The game cuts to Arkham Asylum just as Killer Croc grabs Robin by the head, sparing the player from the bloody details.
  • He Knows Too Much: The witness to Nightwing's murder lasts only long enough to tell the Penguin that he saw Nightwing killed and that Batman would be coming after him as a result. The reason is because the witness saw BATMAN kill Nightwing and would be coming to shut him up.
  • High-Altitude Interrogation: Batman inflicts this upon the Penguin to find out clues on Dick's murder. Penguin actually chews him out, saying that he's supposed to ask questions before he tries to scare his victim shitless.
  • Hijacked by Ganon: Nightwing's murderer is The Joker, after having taken over Batman's body, because of his infected blood being in his veins.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: One of the crimes listed on Joker's rap sheet is cannibalism.
  • Interquel: Seems to take place between Arkham City and Arkham Knight, and might be a nightmare Bruce is having about the Joker's infection.
  • Irony: The game ends almost the exact same way Arkham Knight does, but in reverse. But considering how Arkham Knight ends and how this game happens before it. It seems like Batman deliberately put Joker into his cell as payback for the nightmare he put him through.
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: Subverted, despite the fact that you can watch Jason's death tape in the batcave. In Knight, many felt that the hallucinations made the Knight's identity too obvious, but some who have not played Knight might not connect the dots. In short, Rocksteady managed to add in Knight's The Reveal without spoiling the game.
  • Leave No Witnesses: When the witness of Nightwing's murder makes it to the Iceberg Lounge before he can get to him, Bat-Joker blows the whole place up to make sure he and anyone he could have told all died. Unfortunately, at least one person did survive: The Penguin, who then tells Batman about it the next day when the Bat investigates Nightwing's disappearance.
  • Meaningful Echo: In the final sequence, a few lines from throughout the game are repeated with new, much darker contexts:
    • When Batman finds Nightwing's body, he wonders how "the best fighter [he] ever trained" could be killed; at the end, the line repeats as it's revealed that Batman was the killer.
    • Joker's sarcastic quip of "The Dynamic Duo, together again!" when you find Robin comes back as the Joker seems to gain control of Batman's mind and body.
  • Mind Screw: Batman opens the window to Joe Chill's cell to find the Joker inside. Joker tells him to come closer, before laughing, since now it turns out Batman's the one in the cell. Batman sees a mirror, and suddenly the bodies of Robin and Nightwing appear as Batman realizes he was the one who killed them, then turns to the mirror to see the Joker looking back with blood covered hands.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • Bruce accesses the Batcave by playing a certain tune on the piano.
    • Queen Industries has apparently had a series of murders, which Robin was investigating. This is also a Call-Forward to Knight, as the perpetrator is one of the Joker patients, Christina Bell.
    • Joker refers to himself as "Dr. J Reko" in the autopsy report, the same alias he used in the "Mad Love" episode of Batman: The Animated Series.
    • The telephone Alfred calls Bruce on is red, like the Adam West Batman series.
  • Neck Snap: What finally put Nightwing out of his misery.
  • Noodle Incident: The Joker's rap sheet lists his many, many crimes, many of which imply a serious story, without giving any context for them. This includes things like several different forms of animal baiting (including "rhino baiting", followed by "failure to adequately restrain a rhino"), "spectacular larceny", "cyberbullying", "enthusiastic manslaughter", "unlicensed cabaret entertainment", "unlicensed dentistry", "cannibalism", "impersonating an airline pilot", and "regicide".
  • Nostalgia Level: The final section takes place in Arkham Asylum, complete with a familiar PA jingle.
  • Overly Long Gag: The computer listing off Joker's many, many, MANY prior convictions.
  • Room Full of Crazy: Cell 425, Joe Chill's cell, is filled with messages scrawled in blood by the Joker. The Joker mentally traps Batman in here in the ending.
  • These Hands Have Killed: After the player realizes that Batman was the murderer, they can look down and see Batman's hand, without gloves and covered in blood.
  • Tomato in the Mirror: Batman was Nightwing's murderer all along, which he realizes as he looks in the mirror of Joe Chill's cell and sees the Joker.
  • What the Hell, Player?: Riddler will chastise you when you solve one of his puzzles at Nightwing's murder site.
    The Riddler: Is now really an appropriate time to be searching for trinkets? Have some respect!