Batman: Arkham Origins Was Developed Under a Lot of Pressure – WB Montreal
Warner Bros.’ newest offering, Batman: Arkham Origins may look pretty cool with its intriguing storyline, improvised gadgets, and an accessible batcave, but it was'nt always like this. The team at WB had immense pressure on them while developing Origins and faced “resistance and reluctance at every level."
The game's Senior Producer, Ben Mattes, revealed to Eurogamer that the team had experienced "hesitation" from within the company, alongside a certain amount of skepticism from fans.
"Obviously resistance and reluctance exists at every level. There were fans who said: 'They're not Rocksteady, they can't make an Arkham game.' And there were concerns within the organisation that we weren't going to be able to deliver the special sauce of a Rocksteady game,” Mattes stated.
"And there were concerns within our team, like - 'Maybe we've bitten off more than we can chew? Are we sure we're able to dance with these guys? Do we deserve to be in this same hallowed ground?' - but we wouldn't have continued through the years if we didn't feel we had a shot," he added. "I'm really proud of what we've done."
However, Mattes also assured that most of this ongoing hesitation surrounding the game and the capability of the developing team disappeared after WB Montreal started showing off the game. Still, Mattes believes, “a 60-40 split of positivity to hesitation or maybe outright dismay" may still exist among Arkham fans.
“Y'know: 'It's not Rocksteady. It's a prequel. It's not the original voice actors. Forget it. Ignore. Never paying attention to it. But I think every subsequent piece of code we've shown has won over more and more of the public, to the point where it now stands out as an exception if we see someone who's still towing that line of: 'It's not Rocksteady, it's not going to be good.' There's only, like, one in a 1000 it seems now still playing that card," he added.
He also stated that even though the pressure on the team was great, maybe the pressure of having to live up to Rocksteady's past work helped the game and has even pushed WB Montreal to deliver a finished product worthy of the series.
"You don't want to be the guys who messed up and ran into the ground one of the absolute, top-rated franchises of all time. You don't want that at the top of your CV. 'Yeah, I'm the guy who turned a 96 into a 60, that's my claim to fame.' So I think there was an extra desire to create something really great as we were fully aware of the opportunity that we had," Mattes concluded.
Batman: Arkham Origins releases today for PC, PS3, Xbox 360 and Wii U.