Batman: Arkham Citys Robin design explained with first color art

After months of rumors, a couple weeks ago developer Rocksteady confirmed that Robin would not only be in the sequel to Arkham Asylum (opens in new tab)but is playable in a set of challenge maps. Some were shocked by Robin’s appearance, particularly the shaved head that’s all the rage with space marines these days. Today Rocksteady had an explanation for Robin’s new look, and even included the first full-color image of comic’s premier sidekick.

On the official Arkham City forums (opens in new tab)Senior Concept Artist Kan Mutfic gave some insight into AC’s Robin. “We wanted to create a Robin that players would identify as a contemporary character and move away from the traditional ‘Boy Wonder’ image that most people know. Our vision of Robin is the one of a troubled young individual that is calm and introverted at times but very dangerous and aggressive if provoked.” Troubled individual? Sounds more like other men that have carried the mantle, not so much Tim Drake, the official identity of AC’s Robin.

Kan also clarified the somewhat extreme haircut. “The shaved head is inspired by cage fighters, because we thought that Robin might be doing that in his spare time to keep him on his toes. Still, we kept all the classic trademarks of Robin’s appearance, such as the red and yellow colors of his outfit, the cape and the mask… He is back and he means business.” Robin’s a part-time MMA fighter? That’s pretty unconventional, but we like it, and it certainly separates itself from the “golly gee” boy scout the mainstream world may still see Robin as.

From a comic book nerd standpoint, this version of Robin is tougher than the one we’re used to, looking older, and simmering with more rage then we’re used to. However, this may be Tim Drake, the third Robin, but the look doesn’t match his comic counterpart too well. Tim was the most cerebral Robin; though he could keep up in combat and acrobatics, his best strength was his keen detective skills. This Robin’s aggressive edge fits more with the current Robin, Damian Wayne, or the second, temporarily deceased second Robin, Jason Todd. Perhaps his in-game personality will be an amalgamation of the three.

Jul 6, 2011

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