The review for episode 1 can be found here.
The second season of the Telltale Batman series, Enemy Within, continues its strong start through episode two, which, more than anything, is divisive – and this is a good thing. In episode two, it's Bruce that takes the helm far more than Batman, with 99% of your choices coming from his lips, not from behind the cowl. This change in dynamic is a fresh addressing of one of Batman's more powerful, yet underutilized aspects – his skills in deception.
Throughout the episode, as it was in the first, Wayne must test his alliances, balancing between truth and lies very carefully. Not only is his life on the line, but the lives of those around him. The player has to be careful who they let get close, while being aware that Bruce is unable to thwart the newest, biggest threat, purely on his own.
More so than in season 1 of the series, liberties are taken with some of the classic Batman characters, which is refreshing to say the least. While the characters are tried and true, you begin to expect certain events to play out when they show up, and because fans are so familiar with them, those hunches often turn out correct. By tweaking dynamics and relationships of the characters, Telltale continues to surprise me with this Batman outing.
Based on the end-credits breakdown of decisions, which tallies your choices with those of other players, this episode is very divided. Too often, players are given choices and there's one that is the clear popular choice. This usually involves romance or saving a life, but since episode 2 doesn't delve too much into the former, the player base was mostly split on how they went about saving lives and preventing more carnage. This speaks to the writing quality when players are divided in this way.
While the selection of choices was great, the two problems I had with the game were in fact related to choices. A major choice from the previous episode was more or less ignored in the second, with a character who more or less swore off helping Batman returning immediately to lend a hand. Another major choice, near the end of episode two, was poorly worded, leading to an unintended action.
I find it hard to believe episode 3 could entirely overlook the consequences of the previously mentioned choice, but I wouldn't be surprised either. There were some clues being hinted at that lead me to believe that yet another choice is ignored, or rather the outcome works no matter the choices you made. It's a problem that too many Telltale games have, and one that I was hoping would be rectified with this latest season. Still, two points do not make a pattern, so hopefully episode three breaks the mold.
|+ Small tweaks breathe new life into old characters.||– Some major choices lead to the same outcome.|
|+ Choices are well balanced.|