The Riddler is Actually Getting to Me

riddle

Warning! Mild spoilers ahead!

Sure, it’s weird that I’m writing about this but after spending two weeks (I think) playing Arkham Knight every single day, I feel the need to write about it so I can say the time was more useful than just playing a game I liked.

If you’re familiar with the Edward Nygma, aka The Riddler, you can already see where this is going. One of Batman’s most well known villains has a penchant for leaving riddles that can’t be solved by weaker minds and from this, he hopes to stump “The World’s Greatest Detective” aka Batman, and leave him drooling like a baby at how genius Nygma is. And in the Arkham Knight game, he’s really pissing me off.

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You’re already familiar with the set-up. Other villains are opponents trying to accomplish some goal that you can eventually get a hold of and beat down. Off to jail with them! It’s fun. Two-Face, Deathstroke, The Penguin, etc. All of them can be beaten at their own game and digital Gotham is better for it.

But while Penguin’s thugs can be beaten up with Nightwing and his supply of weapons destroyed, and Firefly just needs to be chased down and done away with, the Riddler takes a slightly different approach. After racing the Batmobile through the sewers and teaming-up with Catwoman to solve some Saw-like puzzles, you finally get to face the little nerd that’s been taunting you the entire game until this point. And after facing you in a giant mech suit, he decides to head back underground, refusing to face you until you’ve solved all of his riddles. And by riddles, he means collecting his little question mark trophies that have been placed throughout the city.

The real bane of Batman's existence

The real bane of Batman’s existence

And it is excruciating.

I’ve got the game at 97% completion and was pretty certain I wasn’t going to finish the game by collecting all these stupid little trophies. Then I collected a few more for the heck of it and have found many of the ways you have to go about getting them to be pretty clever. Crazy to think it was someone’s job to place these things in weird locations all around the city that they made.

But after collecting 80 or so of the 243 in the game I started to feel agonized. Sure I could do a walkthrough and I wouldn’t even consider it to be cheating. But you still have to go through the motions.

I’m wondering this is how Batman would feel as a character when it comes to this particular nemesis. It’s like you want to leave him alone but he’s still out there and has involved plenty of traps that would not only murder you, but others as well. So he needs to be brought in. But at the same time, it seems to bother him almost as much when he’s ignored rather than faced. So maybe the way to really beat him would be to leave him alone and let the thought gnaw at him that he’s not more intelligent.

But this is a video game and you’re not playing mind games. You get the trophies or you don’t.

Riddler, especially in these games, reminds me of those people who regularly engage in online debating.

“You spelled that wrong! Ha! Looks like I win! You’re such a moron you can’t even spell ‘The’ right! You thought you could face me in an online debate?? Please.”

He even says at one point that he's created multiple online users names to argue with himself as "the next logical step."

He even says at one point that he’s created multiple online users names to argue with himself as “the next logical step.”

Any little technicality is blown up beyond proportion so they can feel superior.

But if you’re Batman, that’s not reason enough to arrest someone, is it? No but attempted murder is, and planting bombs in thug’s heads that have to be disposed of by the Dark Knight should probably be stopped.

I would love to say I’ve completed 100% of the game but isn’t the point of a game to have fun? I can’t stand these stupid things! Going around, spending seconds to minutes figuring them out and then moving onto the next with no real end in sight- it’s so tedious. But I hate the thought of this little anal cavity being able to receive a royal beatdown but not putting in the work to give one. As Batman, no less.

I think it’s this sort of effect the Riddler is meant to have on the player. Appreciating the creativity put into the puzzles while being annoyed by the sort of neckbeard-like superiority of the guy who placed them.

So bravo Arkham designers, on creating a villain so annoying, your game is next to impossible to defeat.

"F*^# you."

“F*^# you.”

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4 Responses to “The Riddler is Actually Getting to Me”

  1. Sairor Says:

    Yeah, sometimes less is more.

    He was quite tolerable in Batman Arkham Asylum but his daddy issues have only gotten worse after Arkham City.

    • Taylor Says:

      I’m going to have to go back and see if he was like this at all before. I don’t remember him being so neckbeardy before.

  2. Skinny Pete Says:

    It is annoying how the riddler trophies are just used as filler material to give you more to do. It sucks because I actually really enjoyed some of the puzzles. If they would drop the ridiculous number of trophies from 250+ to something more manageable like 100 it would be more compelling to collect them all.

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