Holy exciting news, Batman!  Warner Bros. and DC just announced the next installment of their acclaimed Batman: Arkham franchise.  It comes in the form of a pair of games called Batman: Arkham Origins (for console) and Batman: Arkham Origins Blackgate (for handheld).  This is a big deal for Nintendo.  I mean, sure, it was cool that the Wii U launched with Arkham City, but it was hard to really get excited about a game that was already a year old.  These new additions will launch simultaneously.  The Wii U and 3DS will get the new games at the same time as the PS3, Xbox 360, PC, and the Playstation Vita.

As suggested by the title, the games serve as a prequel, tackling Batman’s early years as he navigates Gotham City, learning his role as the Dark Knight.  The handheld version, Blackgate, is being touted as a companion game to Arkham Origins, giving additional details and depth to the story and to Batman’s past.  I’m actually really pumped about this direction.  It will be cool to see a young, unexperienced Batman, trying to figure things out and not yet the hardened vigilante we’re used to seeing.  If done well–which, come on, it will be–it will be a great to see Batman grow into the Dark Knight.

This is a huge deal.  Nintendo is usually getting the short stick when it comes to awesome third-party games, getting ports too late or not at all.  Arkham: Origins will rectify this to some degree, and I can’t wait to see an Arkham game developed with Nintendo systems in mind.  Especially with the success of the 3DS, getting an Arkham game of its own will be a fabulous addition to Nintendo’s handheld family.

Look for Batman: Arkham Origins and Batman: Arkham Origins Blackgate on 25 October 2013, wherever you live and whatever console you own.  Check out www.batmanarkhamorigins.com for more info.