Gotham City Impostors Review
Welcome to Gotham silly.
The appeal of a creative license as rich with material as DC’s Batman is clear and one can hardly blame studios with access to the license from milking it. Rocksteady even showed us that this can be done remarkably well. The odd thing about Gotham City Impostors is that there is no Batman, Robin, Joker, Catwoman or even the Penguin… the protagonist here is Gotham itself. Now the surely sounds bizarre especially since, for starters, there is hardly a defined look to Gotham in the sense of being able to recognize it and distinguish it without prior knowledge. However, as the name suggests, Gotham City Impostors features Batman and Joker wannabes, frolicking around Gotham armed to the teeth and wrecking havoc. It’s all a bit of fun, and if that were the the game’s mission statement, one could stay the ship never really steers off course.
Gotham City Impostors is a multiplayer only first-person shooter. There is no single player campaign, only a tutorial and some challenges. The point is to team up with fellow Batman or Joker impostors and fight for dominance of the streets. The game is wacky by design and attempts to take this wackiness through to all game modes, gadgets, locations and even menus.
The game does not really break new ground, as far as shooters go, but surprisingly manages to sustain a specific mood throughout. It is not a massive game, as a digital download title it sports a appropriately modest 3 game modes with the promise of DLC (of the free and paid variety) however the perks of dedication and leveling up are quite entertaining. From the onset, one can tell that character customization will play a big part, however, the sheer quantity of customization options that gradually become available is encouraging. The key word here is ‘gradually’, as various options unlock as your rank improves, compelling you to hit the servers.
Once again, Gotham Impostors is not about pioneering so do not expect much innovation in the game modes though the Psych Warfare mode does have a certain comic charm…or perhaps cheek would would be a better word to describe it. In addition to the classic Team Deathmatch, you have Fumigation and Psych Warfare modes, both of which are designed as team activities and are derivatives of Capture the flag and Protect the base. Ruling the streets of Gotham is apparently a team sport, so there is no free-for-all solo deathmatch.
While it is disappointing that other Gotham City ‘stars‘ such as the Penguin, Two-face, Catwoman don’t have impostors in the game, the wealth of customization options keeps the Bat v Clown dichotomy interesting for as long as required. Perhaps a more relevant complaint is that GC Impostors matchmaking system is not refined. Seeing as its all about teams, the system does not care too much for skill matching, which effectively means a rank 2 noob can easily be tossed in with a ruthless gang of 50 somethings in rank thus making you more like fodder than an actual participant.
GC Impostors is not a looker but it has got some character…especially in the menus. The way instructions are presented is quite amusing, as are many of the the costume options. There is something admirable about a game that doesn’t try too hard, doesn’t take itself too seriously and is content being unremarkable. It has a ‘let’s stop the pissing contest and just have fun’ attitude which is completely fine… in fact, it made me appreciate the game even more.
For all intents and purposes, the game is technically crude and boasts mild fun at best, in terms of gameplay, but shrewd design decisions save it from the abyss of mediocrity. It is not a classic and may never win awards or be attributed to cult-status, but Gotham City Impostors is a fun shooter that never forgets why its on our systems – to bring low-maintenance wacky entertainment.