Batman Forever: The Arcade Game

Batman Forever: The Arcade Game

It's cheesy, it's a horrible conversion of a horrible game based on a terrible movie, and I can't look away from it.

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Genre:
Arcade Action
CDs: 1
(?? Megs)
Players:
1 to 2 Players
ESRB: Kids to Adults
Animated Violence
Publisher:
Acclaim
Retail Barcode:
0 21481 21083 2
Memory:
1 Block
Developer:
Iguana Entertainment
Sony ID:
SLUS-00387
Accessories:
None
Released:
December 3, 1996
PSRM:
005580

It’s a fight to the finish as Batman and Robin take on the dark side of Gotham City’s underworld! Power-up with devastating special moves and gadgets, then master the unique combo system which allows up to 400 hits! Batman Forever: The Arcade Game…100% computer rendered street brawling arcade action!

  • Two-Player Arcade Armageddon featuring the Dynamic Duo
  • Power-up to access Devastating Special Moves
  • Powerful gadgets – Batarang, Shockwave Bomb, Taser Gun, and more!
  • Computer Rendered Heroes and Villains!

Review

Quick Capsule: Hello train, meet wreck. The game based off of the arcade game based off of the movie is one of those rare gems where no matter how bad you know it is you just can’t turn away.

A side scrolling game a la Final Fight heritage, Batman Forever fails on all cylinders sans one; hyper combos. As your stiffly animated character literally slides across the playing field, you can mash on the buttons in different Street Fighter patterns to see if any combos can be unleashed, resulting in 200 hits. The problem is, most enemies only need 4 hits to die, and bosses fall off around the same number, thus rendering the option useless.

To make matters worse, the game follows the insane psychotic color scheme of the movie, which means your eyes are bathed in pastels and bright primary colors that should never have met on-screen together. Cobble that with the horrible pixelated characters, awkward animation, and an almost seizure inducing set of special moves, and you have a concoction of visual crap with no game play to save it. 

Except I can’t turn away. As horrible and cheesy as all of that sounds, it’s become one of the best guilty pleasures. Throw on a GameShark with Infinite health and a Turbo Fire controller, and it’s just a surreal experience.

As of this posting, it’s averaging in the near $100 levels on eBay. It ain’t worth that much cheese, trust me.

Media

Screenshots

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Variants

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Trivia

  • This wasn’t the first Batman arcade game! There was originally a very limited production of a side scrolling game for the original Michael Keaton Batman that never saw a home release. It too was a side scrolling fighter, but with classic 2D images and driving sequences.
  • Acclaim must have had a weird licensing deal where they could have the characters, but not the costumes. In every game they made based on the Forever movie, Batman and Robin’s outfits don’t match up. Batman’s costume has an oversized insignia, while Robin has some minor coloring issues. Don’t even get me started on the 16 Bit version costumes…ugh.
  • Plenty of sound bites from the movie are used in the game, a particular favorite being The Riddler quip, “Now THAT’s impressive!” after the player performs a high ranking combo.
  • Practically every aspect of this game is digitized; i.e. just like how Mortal Kombat was developed. Sadly this really shows, since whenever you’re in a crowd no one really matches up.
  • Also released on the Saturn. The only real comparison would be the Saturn’s ever-so-barely better character renders, and that’s about it.
  • Despite teasing you in the opening trailer, and even having it bring your characters in, there’s no Batmobile stages to be had.