Batman (The Movie) is a multi-scrolling platform arcade game released by Ocean and severely based on the 1989 film of the same name. It was released in 1989 for the Amiga, Atari ST, PC (MS-DOS), Amstrad CPC, Amstrad CPC+, Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum.
STORY / GAMEPLAY Batman must save Gotham City from a lunatic villain called “The Joker” who plans to take over and bring crime and chaos. The storyline is loosely based on the 1989 blockbuster movie “Batman”. The game features 5 levels of action. Your mission starts at the Axis chemical plant (were Mr. Jack Napier fell into acid and transformed into the deformed “monster” we all know... the Joker!) As Batman, you have to hunt down Napier and fight all his deadly gang members in order to proceed to the next level. Your main weapons are your fists, your kicks and your trusty batarangs. You can also use a bat-rope to climb into higher platforms. On each level, the action perspective changes and you also drive (or pilot) your Bat-vehicles (like in the second level where Joker is chasing you and you have to run to your Batcave driving your Bat-mobile.) While driving or flying, you have to avoid various obstacles and traps (e.g. police blockades) –and, believe me this is NOT easy as the gameplay gets frustrating, at least in most of the game’s versions (actually it’s hard to control the Bat-mobile, while the Bat-plane seems more controllable. There is also a third stage offering mastermind puzzle gameplay!
GRAPHICS / SOUND The CPC version is fine in terms of details, colors and sound but gameplay is rather slow while there are a few frame-rate problems. The graphics are nicely drawn using bright colors (looking almost identical to the more advanced CPC+ port) but still, the level details look better on the C64 version (offering huge sprites, better scrolling and more accurate colors). The screen area is rather small but fortunately this doesn't make gameplay too hard. Note that technically, the original CPC version is a ZX Spectrum port. Also, the CPC+ version looks like a direct port from the CPC, which is rather awkward since the advanced hardware capabilities of the Plus systems is not used! The sound features a nicely composed Batman-theme on the main menu as well as some good in-game tunes along with a few sound effects (which are oddly missing from the C64 version!). Compared to the other 8bit versions, the CPC plays all tunes in stereo (through a 3.5" jack) but the C64 version offers more qualitative tunes due to its more advance sound generator.
CPU: ZiLOG Z80 4MHZ MEMORY: 64 KB or 128 KB of RAM depending on the model (capable of being expanded to 512k using memory extension boards) GRAPHICS: Motorola 6845 address generator, Mode 0: 160x200 / 16 colors, Mode 1: 320x200 / 4 colors, Mode 2: 640x200 / 2 colors, A colour palette of 27 colors was supported SOUND: The CPC used the General Instrument AY-3-8912 sound chip, providing 3 channels Mono Sound (via internal speaker) but capable to offer Stereo Sound provided through a 3.5 mm headphones jack (with pretty impressive outcome!). Also, it is possible to play back digital sound samples at a resolution of approximately 5bit. This technique is very processor-intensive though.