If you've read our review of the first season of Batman: A Telltale Game Series, you know we were not the biggest fans of the studio's approach to Batman's world. In addition to some creative freedom taken that was somewhat difficult to accept, the first season of Batman: The Telltale Series suffered from technical problems, below-average graphics, poor pacing, and an unfortunate absence of substantial gameplay.
With such little development time between the first and second seasons, we did not expect The Enemy Within to solve all the problems of the past, and we were right. Many of our complaints remain, at least from what was there in this opening chapter, but regardless, the quality of the script and the high standard of voice acting, along with the introduction of some new pieces on the board, were enough to keep us interested.
As you can no doubt guess by the title of the first episode, Enigma, that is the main villain of this second season, or at least its first episode. As with other characters in the first season, Enigma appears in Batman: The Enemy Within with several changes from what we know from the comic books, especially regarding his past. Enigma is not the only new familiar face to make an appearance. Amanda Waller, responsible for the "Agency" (and the Suicide Squad, not yet mentioned in the game), promises to introduce new problems along Bruce Wayne's and Batman's path, and we are curious to see how this relationship will evolve. A word also for the return of "John Doe", a character that will certainly have a greater role in the episodes to come.
In the first game, Bruce Wayne had a bigger role than Batman, and the same thing is true of this episode. The way Telltale deals with Batman's alter-ego is quite interesting, and more credible than we're used to seeing. As the owner of one of the richest companies in the world, Bruce Wayne ends up having to deal with several inconveniences caused by the fact that he is Batman, and the scrutiny someone in his position would be under in real life.
Some of these inconveniences arise as a result of the choices we made during the first season. Nothing of what we did in previous episodes caused great impact so far, but there were several references. As for new decisions, we haven't really noticed any of true significance, but several left us uncertain about the choices we made, and this no doubt holds the promise of coming back to haunt us.
During the two hours of play (maybe more?), we felt that this first episode flowed rather well, better than some of the episodes of the previous season. The six acts that form Enigma include significant events, and one in particular will leave deep marks on the story. This is mainly due to the quality of the script and the performance of the actors, as there's little to see in terms of actual gameplay.
In most of the acts, all we did involved dialogue decisions or quick time events, which is little for those who like to have more freedom to explore, or options to take in more context. Nothing new here, since this is how Telltale works, and by now you either given up on their games, or have accepted that's the way they make games.
Batman: The Enemy Within has some flaws, most of them common to several Telltale games. The graphics have major inconsistencies, there are forced circumstances that conveniently serve the story, and gameplay is reduced to a minimum. Even so, the quality of the script and the actors performance, along with the way the story flowed, left us interested to see what will come next. As is our practice with games of episodic nature, we will publish a full review when all five episodes are made available.