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Video Game / The Adventures of Batman and Robin

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Get ready to die. A lot.

The Adventures of Batman and Robin is a 1995 Licensed Game for the Sega Genesis based on Batman: The Animated Series, developed by British studio Clockwork Tortoise. It is a run-and-gun in the vein of Gunstar Heroes, but instead of guns, Batman has an unlimited supply of Batarangs. The game also contains an extended Shoot 'em Up level in the Batplane, and two shorter such levels where Batman wears a jetpack. The game is best-known for its extreme difficulty and its complex acid house-inspired industrial soundtrack from Jesper Kyd.

Not to be confused for the Super Nintendo game of the same name, developed by Konami, which while being based on the same medium, is a completely different game.

Also not to be confused with the Sega CD game of the same name, which despite being developed by the same company as the Genesis version, was built to be an entirely new game that takes advantage of the Sega CD hardware rather than an enhanced port.


Tropes present:

  • Actually a Doombot: Upon defeating the Cheshire Cat, its head falls off, revealing a robotic skeleton underneath.
  • Adaptational Villainy: Invoked. While the Cheshire Cat is probably the friendliest character Alice meets in Alice in Wonderland, in this game, it's a giant, evil, Slasher Smiling boss out to kill you. And it shoots lasers from its eyes. Then again, considering it's just a mindless robot created by the Mad Hatter that we're talking about (who himself isn't very similar to his favourite literary character), it's not too surprising. And not much of an adaptation except in-universe.
  • Alice Allusion: Stage 3 is themed around Alice in Wonderland, including boss fights against the Cheshire Cat, Tweedle-Dum, and the Mad Hatter.
  • Amazing Technicolor Battlefield: The Tweedle-Dum and Mad Hatter boss fights.
  • An Ice Person:
    • Surprisingly averted by Mr. Freeze, who has no ice-themed attacks, instead shooting the same bullets that various Mooks use throughout the game.
    • Played straight with Freeze's henchmen in the jetpack section of stage 4, who wield freeze rays similar to what Freeze uses in the show.
  • Ascended Extra:
    • About 25% of the game is devoted to the Alice in Wonderland-themed Mad Hatter, who was a minor villain in the show, and a B-lister in the comics. Mr. Freeze gets this to a lesser extent, being promoted from major recurring villain to Big Bad status.
    • The Batplane is much more prominent in this game than it ever was in the show.
  • Attack Its Weak Point: Cheshire Cat's nose, and the treads on Harley Quinn's tank.
  • Auto-Scrolling Level: Technically the entire Level 2 is this with the first part being an elevator ride and the second an extremely long Batplane level.
  • Background Boss:
    • Cheshire Cat, except for his nose. Also, Two-Face appears only in the background, constantly throwing bombs into the foreground while you destroy part of his airship.
    • The rematch with Harley Quinn both plays this straight and inverts it, as there's a crane swinging constantly between the background and foreground that Batman must avoid.
  • Balloonacy: Joker fights Batman using a hot air balloon that can perform many impossible maneuvers, such as bouncing along the ground and charging horizontally.
  • Battleship Raid: The airship in the Batplane section.
  • BFG: The game-breaking green weapon is simply a big Batarang that gets even bigger as it's upgraded.
  • Best Served Cold: The ending depicts Mr. Freeze telling a guard to send the following message to Batman: "Revenge is a dish best served chilled."
  • Big Bad: Mr. Freeze.
  • Boring, but Practical: Once you have a fully-upgraded green weapon, the most effective strategy is to stand (or duck) at either edge of the screen and hold the fire button, killing virtually all enemies as soon as they come onscreen and putting you at minimal risk for damage.
  • Boss Bonanza: In the Batplane section.
  • Boss Room: The game abruptly warps the player into the Cheshire Cat's room without any attempt to connect it to the rest of the level.
  • Boss Warning Siren: There's a siren rotating constantly behind each boss's HP display.
  • Bottomless Pits: In the car convoy section of stage 1 and the mushroom section of stage 3. Fall into a pit in either of these levels and Batman will bounce back out with a chunk of health taken off.
  • Canon Foreigner: For a Batman game, there sure aren't very many Batman characters in it. The only characters present from the show are Batman, Robin, Harley Quinn, The Joker, Two-Face, Mad Hatter, and Mr. Freeze. No Batman characters appear at all between the Two-Face and Mad Hatter battles, which accounts for at least half the game. The vast majority of the enemies and bosses are original to this game. The Super Nintendo game, in comparison, features a good amount of Batman's Rogues Gallery, although Mad Hatter and Mr. Freeze do not appear there.
  • Catastrophic Countdown: The continue screen features Mr. Freeze staring menacingly ahead as a clock counts down to Gotham's wintry doom.
  • Cats Are Mean: Cheshire Cat.
  • Charged Attack: Unlike in most games, you charge your weapon by letting go of the fire button for a second or two, then pressing it again. There's also a powerup that reduces the charge time to almost nothing.
  • Cheat Code: To skip the level section you're currently on, pause the game and press B, A, Down, B, A, Down, Left, Up, C. You're welcome.
  • Cheshire Cat Grin: Guess who.
  • Climax Boss: The most visually-impressive fight in the game is against Mad Hatter, who appears at the end of a long level themed around Alice in Wonderland. Mr. Freeze's stage and fight feel like an afterthought in comparison.
  • Collapsing Ceiling Boss: During the fight against Harley Quinn and the crane. Also one of the Cheshire Cat's main attacks. Inverted with Two-Face, who's a collapsing floor boss.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: The projectiles Batman and Robin can shoot are divided into Green (most damage per projectile, low spread, low upgradability, slow energy recharge), Blue (lowest damage, spreadshot, medium upgradability, fast energy recharge) and Red/Orange (medium damage per projectile, spreadshot, highest upgradability, medium energy recharge).
  • Continuing is Painful: If you die your weapon will be downgraded. Since this will most likely happen in a difficult section of a level you can bet things will become even more difficult for you, especially if it happens during a boss fight.
  • Co-Op Multiplayer: One of the few mitigating factors for this obscenely hard game is that a second player can help you out as Robin.
  • Cores-and-Turrets Boss: Two-Face, and the airship during the Batplane section.
  • Cowardly Boss: Harley Quinn and Two-Face.
  • Damage-Sponge Boss: Harley Quinn's tank, Joker, the helicopter, and the Cheshire Cat.
  • Darker and Edgier: The music, compared to the TV series. The Danny Elfman-esque whimsy of the cartoon's soundtrack has been ejected in favor of a harsh, abrasive, industrial acid-house score, courtesy of Jesper Kyd.
  • Delusions of Eloquence: The ending contains a glaring malapropism. One sentence of the closing narration reads "The guard taken aback quickly re-opens the peephole to respond to the low voice emulating from the cell." The word that should be there is "emanating", not "emulating".
  • Demoscene: Many of the hardware tricks used in this game recall the techniques of 90s Amiga demos.
  • Demoted to Extra:
    • Batman's usual nemesis, the Joker, has an unusually small role in the game, being dispatched at the end of stage 1. Even Harley Quinn gets more screentime.
    • Unlike many other Batman games, there are no Batmobile levels; the Batmobile appears only in the stage introduction screens.
  • Double Jump: Sort of. While in the air, you can extend your time in the air by performing a horizontal kick, but it doesn't increase the height of your jump at all. Still useful for dodging enemy attacks, though.
  • The Dragon: Mad Hatter.
  • Dynamic Entry: Downplayed with Two-Face. He is appears swinging on a ladder from his zeppelin... then he chucks a bundle of dynamite on you.
  • Early-Bird Boss: Harley Quinn's tank puts up a long and brutal fight if you don't have any green powerups. New players will probably have to play through the first section of stage 1 several times before they manage to beat her.
  • Early Game Hell: The game drops you right into a swarm of enemies with a pitifully weak un-upgraded Batarang. You'll have to rely on melee attacks until you can get a few green powerups, at which point the game becomes much more manageable.
  • Ejection Seat: Harley Quinn escapes her tank in one of these, and later fights Batman while riding on it.
  • Elevator Action Sequence: The first section of stage 2, including the boss battle against Two-Face.
  • Excuse Plot: The only hint at a plot in-game is a brief introductory cutscene which depicts the villains escaping from Arkham Asylum, and an equally perfunctory ending depicting Mr. Freeze in prison.
  • Eye Beams: One of Cheshire Cat's main attacks.
  • Follow the Leader: The game wears its Gunstar Heroes influence on its sleeve, with its mixture of run-and-gun and beat-'em-up gameplay, aversion of One-Hit Point Wonder, liberal use of Unexpected Shmup Level, and long, multi-phase boss battles.
  • Game-Breaking Bug: A really annoying one after the Cheshire Cat battle. If you're killed on your last life by the Kaizo Trap of Cheshire Cat's head falling off, the game will not go to the continue screen, nor even the title screen, but will instead hang forever in the boss room. The only solution to this bug is to reset the console.
  • The Goomba: The purple guys in stage 1 can be dispatched with a single melee attack, or wiped out en masse with a charged basic Batarang.
  • High-Altitude Battle: The game doesn't say explicitly, but it seems that the Cores-and-Turrets Boss fight against Two-Face is a small part of the airship that Batman destroys later during the Batplane section.
  • High-Speed Battle: Batman fights Joker's balloon while on the back of a speeding semitruck.
  • Hitler Cam: Mr. Freeze on the continue screen.
  • Hit Points: Each boss has 99 of them, though hit points are of differing value from boss to boss. Cheshire Cat takes far more hits to defeat than Harley Quinn on her ejector seat.
  • Hyperspace Arsenal: Batman stores his bottomless supply of Batarangs...somewhere.
  • Jet Pack: Batman gets one during one section of stage 3, and then again during a section of stage 4.
  • Jump Physics: The fastest way to move horizontally is to hold down on the D-pad and mash the jump button so that Batman continually dive kicks toward the ground. Also handy for clearing out Mooks, as dive kicks stun most enemies and deal decent damage.
  • Kaizo Trap: After beating the Cheshire Cat, its head will fall and crush you if you don't move out of the way.
  • Kid Sidekick: Player 2 plays as Robin.
  • King Mook: In stage 3, the player fights a gigantic bouncing Tweedle-Dum in an Amazing Technicolor Battlefield; the smaller Tweedles are the main Mooks for the stage.
  • Load-Bearing Boss: At the end of the Two-Face battle, the elevator you're on collapses.
  • Locomotive Level: Well, not a locomotive, but the last section of stage 1 takes place on top of a convoy of speeding cars.
  • Long Song, Short Scene:
    • "Extreme Boss", a 4-minute long track, plays only during the brief helicopter boss battle at the end of the Batplane section.
    • Inverted with "Psycho Section", which plays throughout three consecutive segments in stage 3. The track has a very definite breakdown and "ending", followed by a few seconds of silence, after which it abruptly restarts. Since these segments collectively take a fairly long time, you're almost guaranteed to hear the track restart at least once.
  • Macro Zone: Stage 3, of the "enemies and scenery are gigantic" variety, fitting with its Alice in Wonderland theme.
  • Mad Bomber: Two-Face's only method of attack is to throw barrages of bombs into the foreground.
  • Marathon Boss: The airship in the Batplane section.
  • Marathon Level:
    • The Batplane section of Stage 2 runs for about 16 minutes with no breaks of any kind.
    • The way the game divides up the stages is unusual. Technically, there are only 4 stages in the game, all of them extremely long, but each level consists of multiple segments that would probably be split among 3 or 4 levels in any other game.
  • Mega Neko: Cheshire Cat.
  • Mercy Invincibility: A strategic variation: while the game does give the standard blinking invincibility for a couple of seconds at the beginning of a new life, you don't have to start a new life immediately after dying. When Batman is knocked down upon losing a life, you can press any button to make him immediately get back up, or you can wait for him to get back up on his own (which takes around ten seconds), during which time he's invincible. This idle period can be highly useful during the more difficult sections of the game, such as during the Mad Hatter fight, where it can allow the player to skip right past some of the harder card patterns.
  • Mind Screw: Stage 3 in general, but then, so was Alice in Wonderland at times. It starts normally enough with the first part in a studio set. But then...
    • The Cheshire Cat boss battle.
    • An outstanding drop in pH right before the battle with the giant Tweedle.
    • Flying through a long Sea of Holes.
    • And finally, the battle with Mad Hatter on a moving track that seems to be suspended in space.
  • Mini-Boss: Several of them in the Batplane section.
  • More Dakka: In this game, Batman is like a human machine gun with Batarangs.
  • Nice Hat: During his boss fight, Mad Hatter floats around in a giant upside-down top hat.
  • Nintendo Hard: A brutally difficult game from the word go. Even the first section of Level 1 will kick a first-time player's ass.
  • No Problem with Licensed Games: The game was well-received, especially regarding its visuals and music.
  • No Sidepaths, No Exploration, No Freedom: All levels progress strictly from left-to-right, except for the first part of stage 2, in which you're on an elevator moving up.
  • Obstructive Foreground: During the jetpack section of stage 4.
  • Off-Model: In the intro, the artwork of Batman and Robin standing atop a skyscraper looks a bit dodgy. This is odd, considering that the rest of the game's art is very nice.
  • 1-Up: There's a several hidden throughout the game, some of which only appear upon fulfilling certain conditions. For example, you can get one right near the start of the beginning of stage 1 by clearing five Mooks in a row from the upper deck with a single charged Batarang.
  • Orchestra Hit Techno Battle: The entire game is this, thanks to Jesper Kyd's acid house-influenced soundtrack.
  • Out-of-Character Moment: Remember that episode where Batman bombarded the villains with thousands of Batarangs? No? Just go with it.
  • The Pawns Go First: Two-Face lets his minions do most of the fighting.
  • Piñata Enemy: The main source of health pickups. It's not always easy to tell which enemies will drop them, though.
  • Poison Mushroom: In Stage 4, the powerups that normally cycle between green, blue, and red also have a blank grey power-down added to them. Touch a powerup while it's grey, and you instantly revert back to the basic, un-upgraded gun you started the game with.
  • Ratchet Scrolling: You can only go right.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: Mr. Freeze on the continue screen.
  • Rock Beats Laser: Batman is able to destroy tanks, airships, and giant robots just by throwing a lot of Batarangs at them.
  • Scenery Porn: The game revels in its smooth-scrolling faux-3D backgrounds.
  • Scoring Points: That do absolutely nothing.
  • Shark Tunnel: Stage 4.
  • Shout-Out: The Mad Hatter sports elongated eyelashes on one of his eyes.
  • Slasher Smile: Cheshire Cat.
  • Slippy-Slidey Ice World: Averted, in a game where Mr. Freeze is the Big Bad, no less! Stage 4 has plenty of water in it, including an underwater tunnel, but no ice anywhere.
  • The Smurfette Principle: Harley Quinn is the only female character in the game.
  • Soundtrack Dissonance: What music would you think appropriate for an Alice in Wonderland-themed level? Did you think of acid house? Well, Jesper Kyd did.
  • Spread Shot: The red weapon. Unlike the Trope Namer from Contra, it's awful.
  • Stationary Boss / Pivotal Boss:
  • Tech Demo Game: Almost every level and boss battle is based around some kind of technical wizardry with the Genesis hardware. The game, as a whole, feels adjacent to the Amiga demoscene.
  • Traintop Battle: Not quite a train, but Btman fights Joker's balloon on the back of a semitruck.
  • Turns Red: Almost all bosses change tactics when their health is low.
  • Took a Level in Badass: The player, once they fully upgrade their weapon.
  • Unexpected Gameplay Change: The Batplane section. Also, Batman wears a jetpack for two separate sections in stages 3 and 4, including the final battle against Mr. Freeze.
  • Unexpected Shmup Level: The Batplane section, and then again in the jetpack sections of stages 3 and 4, including the final battle against Mr. Freeze.
  • Unstable Equilibrium: When you die, your weapon is also downgraded a level, meaning you're likely to die again against the thing that just killed you.
  • Unwinnable by Mistake: If you're killed on your last life by the Kaizo Trap of Cheshire Cat's head falling off, the game will not go to the continue screen, nor even the title screen, but will instead hang forever in the boss room. The only solution to this bug is to reset the console and start the whole game over. You may want to use the level-skip Cheat Code in case this happens.
  • Vehicular Assault: Most of the bosses. Harley Quinn's tank, Harley Quinn's ejector seat, Joker's balloon, Two Face's airship, Mad Hatter's giant floating hat, and Mr. Freeze's floating platform thing. Also, all of the bosses in the Batplane section. Cheshire Cat and Tweedle-Dum are the only bosses that aren't in some sort of vehicle.
  • Victory Pose: After defeating a boss, hold A or C and Batman will throw his cape up to look more badass.
  • Video-Game Lives: You start with three lives, and there are a scant few extra lives hidden in containers throughout the game. While the game does give you six continues, you could easily burn through all of those on stage 1.
  • Villain: Exit, Stage Left: Harley Quinn blasts off in her ejector seat after you destroy her tank, but you track her down soon afterward.
  • Wackyland: Stage 3, which is themed after Alice in Wonderland.
  • Wake-Up Call Boss: The first level boss has no mercy for new players. It will teach them the hard way how bosses in this game works, with a great variety of attack patterns, making trial and error the only way possible to defeat it. Many of the bosses in the following stages feel easier after the first one.
  • Wraparound Background: Every level in the game consists of these, most of them with a faux-3D effect.

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