Step inside the Batman universe with The Arkham Asylum Files: Panic in Gotham City

Batman Arkham Asylum. Courtesy of Infinite Rabbit Holes and Motiv PR.
Batman Arkham Asylum. Courtesy of Infinite Rabbit Holes and Motiv PR. /
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Have you ever wanted to become a hero in a mystery-adventure series? Do you love the characters from the Batman universe? A new interactive, mixed reality game called The Arkham Asylum Files: Panic in Gotham City is on a mission to put players inside a new kind of Batman experience that blends a tabletop game with escape room puzzles and video storytelling.

The Arkham Asylum Files: Panic in Gotham City is a game like no other we’ve seen before. It’s described as an “augmented reality adventure game that combines storytelling and technology,” and what it really does best is create a collaborative experience where players have a leading role in a new Batman mystery story.

Divided across seven different hour-long chapters, the game involves players moving through a series of unique challenges to unlock new clues and pieces of the story. These challenges involve a combination of watching video or digital content, using physical game pieces that come in the box (over 100 of them), and solving puzzles with interactive augmented reality.

In this game, augmented reality is what gives Gotham life beyond a board game. And you’re not just using AR to make it look like a character is in the room with you. Rather, you’re using AR to animate the paper elements of the game in ways that move the story forward and present the players with crucial clues. And yes, over the course of the game, you are building a physical 3D Gotham on your living room table.

Batman Arkham Asylum. Courtesy of Infinite Rabbit Holes and Motiv PR.
Batman Arkham Asylum. Courtesy of Infinite Rabbit Holes and Motiv PR. /

What is it like to play The Arkham Asylum Files: Panic in Gotham City?

We had the chance to try out the game earlier this summer at San Diego Comic-Con, and we were blown away by both the storytelling elements and the game-play experiences. For fans of television series and movies with Batman characters — especially Harley Quinn and The Joker, you’ll love how video is the driving force of this game.

Even if you’re not usually someone who plays tabletop games with friends, the file-box format of this game experience makes it extremely user-friendly and walks you through challenges (with hints if you need them too!). Each challenge is unique and utilizes AR and game pieces in new ways. Maybe the AR allows you to see hidden text on a document, but maybe it also allows you to step inside a bank vault and use physical keys to break out.

Which characters do you encounter in the experience?

There are several popular Batman characters included in the video content, augmented reality, and puzzles. The story is centered around fan-favorite Harley Quinn, who is back in Arkham Asylum. In this world, she’s not there as a patient, but has returned as a therapist who is “helping figure out what’s going on in the city, and uncovering the backstory behind a young vigilante who has conflicting, but understandable views with Batman.

Along with Harley Quinn as the main character, you’ll interact with The Joker, who is your host and guide through the digital media and video content. Along with Batman himself and other characters from Gotham City, you’ll also be introduced to brand new characters in the universe.

Batman Arkham Asylum. Courtesy of Infinite Rabbit Holes and Motiv PR.
Batman Arkham Asylum. Courtesy of Infinite Rabbit Holes and Motiv PR. /

What’s included in The Arkham Asylum Files: Panic in Gotham City game box?

This is no ordinary tabletop game box. Players will open the actual file box to the Arkham Asylum Files. Game pieces, clues, challenges, and instructions are all included within the “files” that are organized strategically in the file box for gameplay. Altogether, there are over 100 physical game pieces.

Digitally, players will also access over 40 minutes of exclusive video content via an accompanying mobile app that’s available at no additional cost. This is where you’ll access the new media, AR, and other character surprises along the way.

How long does it take to play The Arkham Asylum: Panic in Gotham City game?

Each group will move throughout the game at their own pace, but Infinite Rabbit Holes, the game’s creators, estimate that the entire adventure will take between 8 -10 hours to play. But don’t worry — they don’t expect you to move through that in one sitting (though you could).

Rather, the “files” of the Arkham Asylum Files are the various chapters in the game that divide the story into chapters or acts. In total, there are seven different chapters (each taking a little over an hour) so that you can easily jump back into the game at an accessible starting point whenever you and your teammates are ready to continue.

Each chapter involves a mix of board game elements, AR, puzzle solving, and of course — brand new animated and live-action cut-scenes featuring Batman characters that were developed exclusively for the game.

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The Arkham Asylum Files: Panic in Gotham City game is currently available on the Infinite Rabbit Holes site and some other game retail locations. The game creators have confirmed that this will be the first in a series of three games. Follow Infinite Rabbit Holes for more news and updates about this immersive series!