I own and have finished completely the previous two installments of the "Batman: Arkham __" series. For all three games I bought the collector's or special editions. My expectations were high from my two previous experiences, but that is not fair to the readers who have not played the previous games. I will split the review into two: how it stacks up on its own, and how it compares to the rest of the series.
Batman: Arkham Origins a prequel for the first game in the series, Batman: Arkham Asylum. It's a third person exploration game with some features of an RPG, as you gain experience from performing tasks and fighting to expand your gadget arsenal and skillset. The story is set during the first years of Batman's operation in Gotham City as a crimefighter. The police is trying to apprehend him as he is outside the law. It is set during one night on Christmas Eve, where Black Mask, a crime boss, has set a price on Batman's head and 8 assassins answered the call.
On its own, I have to say that this game frustrated me a bit. There was a lot of problems with glitches during my playthrough. There were glitches where an objective was not present even after setting a waypoint, or at times after defeating a foe I would not get a prompt to follow the story. Sometimes I would perform challenges or finished a section and the game would get stuck and not save. Restarting the game has been something I've had to do every time I sat down to play. I even met some challenges, did not get the trophy or challenge acknowledgement, and after turning off the game and starting it another day I would get it. Sometimes the game started to save and lagged to the point I could not move Batman. Again, I had to restart the session. In another part, a fight starts as you walk to a door. 5-6 foes come out the door, but one of them got stuck between the door and walls. I fought and defeated the group but I could not continue until the "area was cleared". This meant the guy clipped between the wall and door, who suddenly was lifted to the ceiling. Somehow, I activated a gadget and tried to attack the thug and got to him so I could continue. Stuff like this plagues the game, which after such a great game like Arkham City it shouldn't have happened. Granted, this is a different developer, but for a high profile game like this, so many bugs and glitches should not have been allowed.
As the third game in a series, it did not do any new things. Yes, it added more of Batman's rogue gallery and provided good boss fights, but even the maps were recycled from the previous game. The layout was very similar to the previous game and the fighting had a similar feel, but was tweaked. Mashing buttons will not help you in this game. Fights have to be taken a bit slower, as a mistimed button press can take your multiplier. The camera tries to do too much in a fight and many times I ended up being hit from behind because the enemy was out of the camera view but magically warped behind me due to the animation sequence.
I did not play multiplayer online as there was no one to play with the 2 times I tried it. Not very interested in multiplayer gaming anyway.
The season pass and extra skins are a nice bonus, but if it's too expensive, skip it. They do not do anything different to the game. The Deathstroke challenge maps is very similar to the Catwoman maps on the previous game. The cool thing about it are the different moves. I'm still trying to get used to fighting with him.
Overall, I cannot give it a high score because of the bad glitches I experienced. In terms of the story and how it ties to the rest of the series, it was an incredible experience. It is definitely the worst of the three games in the series, but if you are a Batman fan, there is a lot of good here worth going for, glitches and all.