Gotham Knights will be here later this month and will come with an entirely new experience than what fans of the Arkham games are used to. And one major update coming to the game is co-op, which will allow two players to freely roam Gotham’s open world in different locations and take on different activities from one another.
Recently, Game Informer got a hands-on gameplay experience where they reported their first impressions and takeaways from the game. And while there is a lot of great bits about what we can expect in Gotham Knights, the Co-Op functionality stood out the most.
When players pick up the game on October 21st, they will be able to take on the story solo on their own, or join another player and help them progress through cooperative gameplay. Interestingly, developer Warner Bros. Montreal explained that while two players can join each other in Gotham’s open world at the same time, they will not be tethered to one another and can freely explore Gotham and take on different activities if they want (save for campaign/story missions that require players to stay together). To reiterate, players will not have to be in a certain proximity to one another when they join in co-op and can explore completely opposite sides of Gotham’s open world at the same time if they want.
For instance, while story missions that progress the campaign will need both players focused on the task at hand, other activities around the city can be freely explored simultaneously with both players on the opposite side of the map kicking different bad guy butts while playing as one of the four playable characters. This creates an entirely new dynamic that we have never seen in an open-world Batman game before and will allow players to jump in and help out another player at any point and freely allow them to leave and go do something else at ant time if they feel like it.
While the co-op gameplay sounds awesome in that regard, the game is restricted to only two-person co-op, despite there being four playable characters. WB Montreal claims this was a necessity as it best supports the game’s narrative. Game director Geoff Ellenor elaborated on this by saying:
“Storytelling is also one of our really important pillars of the game. We really wanted to deliver on that. So as we went through our early prototyping, we kind of, at some point, drew the line that four players together is like a party moving in a general direction. And it’s fun, but it’s not storytelling if the experience becomes more and more about the social experience and less about the story you’re experiencing in the game.”
The rest of the article dives deeper into combat changes and other major takeaways from their two-hour hands-on experience with Gotham Knights and is definitely worth the read.
Gotham Knights releases on October 21st for PS5, Xbox Series X|S, and PC via Steam.