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Batman: Arkham Knight has not had a good launch on PC, to put it mildly. There was, even before Warner Brothers, and Rocksteady started replying, a lot of issues, as documented by our own Andrew Stretch.

This was a case though where sometimes being quiet is the best thing you can do. The first of two posts put up on the Batman: Arkham Knight page suggests setting requirements, and ‘fixing’ the problem by turning down the options. It appears the minimum specs in fact are for minimum 720p/30 FPS instead of the more normal 1080p/60fps that people might expect, and the Ultra system requirements are a NVIDIA 980… and still capped at 30 FPS.

In that post in fact they warn against modifying the ini files saying it will make the game less stable. That is the only way to get more than 30 FPS currently, and also the only way to disable motion blur which some users have reported as crashing the game if  they do so.

The bigger news of the evening though is that Warner Brothers has removed Batman: Arkham Knight from the Steam Store. They have disabled it for purchasing saying, “We want to apologize to those of you who are experiencing performance issues with Batman: Arkham Knight on PC. We take these issues very seriously and have therefore decided to suspend future game sales of the PC version while we work to address these issues to satisfy our quality standards.”

However, it is important to note that while they are saying that, and in the post include a link to steam refunds, the game is still being sold in other distribution methods such as Amazon, Gamestop, Greenman Gaming and others. Getting refunds at those distribution networks may be tougher than via Steam, though at least in the case of Greenman Gaming – who are selling the title at 40% off – they have committed that if the next patch doesn’t fix the game for you they will offer a refund. Humble Bundle has also said they’ve been requested to take down the game from the store and appear to have done so, and are offering refunds through their support page:

What does this all mean? It’s a bit tough to say, though they appear to have come down a bit off their initial high horse and are looking at the game, the worst port since at least Assassin’s Creed: Unity, and arguably worse then that game’s awful port. This is, as far as I know, the first time a title has been suspended for sale on Steam like this, and is almost certainly directly due to the refund policy. It also appears we are seeing downstream effects of the Steam Refund policy on places like Greenman Gaming and Humble Bundle.

Update: It appears that Greenman Gaming have removed Batman: Arkham Knight from their store as well, with an out of stock part added.

Update 2: It appears that they aren’t the only ones. We’ve reached out to several retailers but there are some we can confirm based on statements made elsewhere or storefront changes.

  • GAME UK has according to Eurogamer pulled it from their shelves, though it still is on their website.
  • Amazon has apparently pulled their digital download code as that page is no longer available, and the physical copy is only from third party vendors
  • Walmart no longer appears to be selling any copies at this point in time.
  • Best Buy is still stocking Batman: Arkham Knight in Canada but not in the United States.
  • Gamestop appears to have pulled it in the United States but it is still available in Canada.

Batman Pulled

 

Update 3:

Sefton Hill, the Game Director and Co-Owner of Rocksteady has said they support the decision to suspend sales of the PC Version and are offering any support to Iron Galaxy that they can to fix it. Additionally, all patches on consoles are being delayed until after the PC version is fixed.

What are your thoughts on Batman: Arkham Knight’s launch? Do you think suspending it for sale is the right move? What does WB have to do to get you interested in the title again? Share your thoughts in the comments below!t

More About This Game

Don Parsons

News Editor

I've been a gamer for years of various types starting with the Sega Genesis and Shining Force when I was young. If I'm not playing video games, I'm often roleplaying, reading, writing, or pondering things brought up by speculative fiction.



  • Casey

    This isn’t the first game to be pulled from steam, but it certainly is the biggest. The only other one I know of was some sort of crappy survival game.

    If for whatever reason the patch doesn’t fix it, ill be getting my refund from GMG.

  • baeocystin

    I don’t think it’s a coincidence that they’re pulling sales, now that Steam has a solid refund policy in place.

    Before, devs could launch a buggy-but-anticipated title (like the Assassin’s Creed title you mentioned) and still expect to make good initial sales. Now? Pulling sales until the game is patched is going to be the less costly option than processing refunds.

    Frankly, I see it as a good thing.

  • Übermensch

    My guess is that this was a cynical move. Refunding any future purchasers will likely be more harmful than just holding off a while until it’s stable, and of course, some people on Steam can buy it, run it then write a joke review and get a refund…
    The other thing is, if the title gets pulled completely then rereleased (and maybe given as Premium Edition or something as a goodwill to existing owners), which might happen, it would possibly wipe the reviews.

    At the end of the day, I regret being used as a beta tester, and I am more than offended by their earlier abrasive behaviour and raising of specs, so I’ll see about patches, otherwise I’ll take it back and wait until it’s stable and/or GOTY.

    P.S. Some are pointing out that some shows and cons had stable PC demos running… Obviously we’ve only seen release on the PS4, but some are suggesting the version for port was one of these early demos, or even an incomplete release version for a less powerful console, like the WiiU or last-gen. All in all, this is one of the most turbulent and bizarre PC ports in ages, especially considering Rocksteady’s track record.

  • Cred

    yeah
    pull it off and fix it

    what else could they do, stop selling on steam and make their own store that sells non refundable steam keys?

  • Fizzles

    Can’t be a worse game than alien: colonial marines.

  • Guy Montag

    And I thought the Japanese were terrible at PC ports.

  • Corey Marshall

    Guessing that Steam refunds are the primary reason they pulled it, but the negative response has been pretty huge and it’s affecting hype of the launch as a whole. Sure that had some to do with it as well.

    I love this so much. Gamers giving publishers crap en masse and financial consequences result in a very visible bloody nose from WBRocksteady. Something tells me bad PC ports are not going to be quite so common. ^_^

  • Dr Dub

    I called it at the time but I said that the refund policy will probably lead to the end of simultaneous PC version releases and maybe even some games no longer seeing a PC release.

    In fairness though games like AC Unity and DA:I may as well have never been released for me.

    I use SLI and always have the latest top of the range non-Titan cards (980ti now) and both were still unplayable months after launch due to flickering issues etc and I threw in the towel before they were fixed – assuming they ever were.

    So just remember when it happens and games are delayed or just not released that you are no worse off than if the game had been shoved out the door in the same state as Arkham or Unity.

  • B_R

    Too bad Steam’s return policy wasn’t out before Mortal Kombat X’s release, or there may have been a similar result.
    It’s good to see someone is finally taking responsibility for giving PC users thrown together ports that no one is happy with.

  • SevTheBear

    Indeed. The refund system seems to be doing it’s job and are sending the publisher clear a message.

  • SevTheBear

    I really hope someone at WB games have red ears. I know people are pist at RockSteady and IronGalaxy for this shitty PC port. But IronGalaxy only had like 8 weeks to make the port (which ain’t that much time) and the team is only 12 people.

  • Mike

    Here’s a question for discussion:

    If WB manages to get the bugs worked out of the PC version and they relaunch it, should the old Steam Reviews be wiped?

    Quick argument for yes: Since it would be a new version being released, old reviews (and horrible scores) would only be relevant to a version no longer available.

    Quick argument for no: It is just as important for buyers to know the bad history of a product, rather than open the door to legitimizing review wipes which could be easily abused.

    I’d be interested in hearing others’ thoughts on this.

  • Alex

    Good, good!

  • SevTheBear

    When the new version comes out, of course the reviews should reflect the relaunched version. But a reminder that this game was a giant mess on launch should stay in the review. Companies like WB needs to learn that rushing games and hired unfit studios for the port jobs has a negative effect.

  • Garbagio Dumpsterino

    Whiny entitled gamers! You think you deserve a non-buggy game? Cry babies.

  • Toastrider

    Day One: Garry’s Incident, and Ride to Hell: Retribution are the only other notable titles I can recall being pulled. Infestation: Survivor Stories (formerly The War Z) was temporarily pulled IIRC.

    Still, this is definitely the biggest title, and I’m hoping AAA devs will take this as a lesson to heart; don’t use your customers for QA.

  • Toastrider

    As I noted elsewhere, Iron Galaxy better get their shit together if they plan to port Killer Instinct to the PC.

  • Toastrider

    My heart bleeds. I’d prefer to wait a few extra months for a game that didn’t shit out its intestines all over my hard drive.

  • bladestorm91

    Only 8 weeks? Holy shit, I had a feeling that they would the largest reason for the disastrous port with Rocksteady being unable to do anything about it. But if it’s like this then the biggest reason for this shit port has to be Warner Bros being arrogant twats.

  • SevTheBear

    I heard some say that it was 6 weeks… not sure if this is true. But it doesn’t change that they gave a team with only 12 people less then 1 month to port at game to a system platform with over +100 different hardware setups. Just think if this had been Linux and Mac as well…

  • duder

    i just hope the sheeple will finally stop pre ordening this rubbish

  • coboney

    The situation there is that they claim the 8 weeks cause they got the pc steam key 2 months ago. However, they might have had the source code before that. We don’t know on that and neither Iron Galaxy or Warner Brothers have responded to us reaching out to them

  • Souvik Roy Choudhury

    Hopefully, the sarcasm will not fly over people’s head. 😛

  • Übermensch

    I find it quite refreshing how the period of insults and corporate shills faking reviews lasted less than a day, and was immediately called out by gaming media. Normally, we’re used to companies (and some outlets) having that one go on for days, even weeks or months… (Looking at you, BioWare and EA) In fact, it could possibly even be put down to rogue agents.

  • Übermensch

    Weren’t they all crappy indie scamware, though?

  • Übermensch

    The strange thing is that Rocksteady had development builds running on PC for various games events up until recently, which were obviously running okay. I’m not saying they were shippable, but I’m thinking maybe because WB Games were saying “MAKE LOADS OF DLC RELEASE IT ON ALL PLATFORMS PROFIT PROFIT PROFIT” they were the ones behind the outsourcing, and so the management from Warner basically made co-operation between devs really hard.