It’s a Bird! It’s a Plane! It’s… a Rumor!
The rumor mill has been abuzz recently with murmurs of a Rocksteady Superman Game planning to be announced this year. Rocksteady Studios is the team responsible for the Batman Arkham series (Arkham Asylum, City, and Knight, respectively).
Rocksteady has been teasing an unnamed project since January of this year ever since they sent out this tweet:
Rocksteady's unofficial mocap support crew, fresh from a test shoot. pic.twitter.com/fXrUkbDFmR
— Rocksteady Studios (@RocksteadyGames) January 16, 2018
Then, they followed that up a few weeks later with this:
The Rocksteady Mocap studio. Calm before the storm… pic.twitter.com/creAOFtsBW
— Rocksteady Studios (@RocksteadyGames) January 30, 2018
After two cryptic messages so close together, Rocksteady has been suspiciously quiet ever since. These leaks come from a user on the 4Chan message board, so they should obviously be taken with a heaping helping of salt. But this isn’t the first time, even recently, where detailed leaks on message boards have led many to believe the source of the claims. The leaks say that:
- The game will be made by Rocksteady
- It will use the Unreal Engine 4
- It will contain a large, open world version of Metropolis (about 3 times the size of Arkham Knight with a lot more buildings)
- You will not be able to play as Clark Kent
- The main villain is Brainiac
- Superman will be significantly depowered from his comic book version, closer to his power level from The Animated Series
- There will be semi-destructible environments akin to Arkham Knight, but no buildings will be falling over or anything crazy like that
- The combat system integrates the flying, similar to Dragon Ball Z, where you can punch someone, and then zoom towards them and repeat
- It will be set within the “Arkhamverse”
- There will be tons of easter eggs to Superman’s lore, and some to the events that took place in the Batman Arkham Franchise
The leaker also states that there is a separate, multiplayer Justice League game in the works, with announcements planned for E3. The leaker claims this explains the recent hirings from Rocksteady on their site for multiplayer game designers. Also, the leaker states that this Superman game will act as a proof of concept for this future Justice League game.
Normally I don’t take much stock in rumors. However, there are reasons to think these claims MAY be legitimate. The fact that Rocksteady has been teasing a new game, the level of detail in these claims, plus the fact that it would just make sense. This June will mark 3 years since the release of Arkham Knight, and the last we heard from Rocksteady was the middling Batman Arkham VR released in October of 2016.
Also, the last big game from DC was Injustice 2. NetherRealm Studios seems to be done with that game, and many suspect we will be seeing a Mortal Kombat 11 announcement this year at E3, which follows NetherRealm’s alternating schedule of; Mortal Kombat game, Injustice game, Mortal Kombat, etc. This leaves nothing big coming up for DC games in the coming year, and with Square Enix coming out with their new Avengers title, it doesn’t seem likely that DC and Warner Bros. would rest on their laurels and let Marvel hog all the spotlight.
Another possible reason this may be true, is that Rocksteady has not denied these claims. Sometimes the best indicator of truth is non-denial. If something is false, companies are quick to put out the flames of untrue rumors. So the fact that we have heard nothing from Rocksteady may speak volumes.
Again, these are all rumors, and may be only partially true, or completely false. Personally, I hope the rumors are true. It is time for the Man of Steel to get a truly great video game, and Rocksteady are the perfect candidates to do for Big Blue what they did for the Bat. It may seem hard to remember now, but before Arkham Asylum, Batman had almost as bad a track record in the video game realm as Superman.
Hopefully we hear more at E3, which is now just over a month away.