What Is "Batman: Arkham World?"

This past weekend was good for Rocksteady Studios and Warner Bros. Games at the Spike TV Video Game Awards 2011. Even though they didn't win Game of the Year honors (that went to Bethesda Softworks' "The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim"), their big release of the year, "Batman: Arkham City," still scored a number of wins, including Best Xbox 360 Game, Best Action Adventure Game, Best Adapted Video Game and, perhaps most satisfyingly, Character of the Year for the Joker.

During his virtual acceptance speech, the legendary villain dropped what may very well be a hint as to what gamers should expect from the inevitable third chapter in Batman's "Arkham" adventure. The pre-rendered footage of the Joker accepting the award featured the cLown Prince of Crime standing at a podium giving a speech, with the "Arkham City" and Spike TV logos wallpapered behind him. But what got viewers excited were some words printed on the Joker's acceptance speech: "Batman: Arkham World Script." (On the other side were the words "Rocksteady: Confidential.") During the speech, at one point, Joker opted to throw away the script, saying, "I don't think I'll be needing this anymore. Whoops! Spoilers!"

While this could all be an elaborate joke on behalf of Rocksteady, designed merely to get the gaming community buzzing as we continue through the holiday buying season, Rocksteady has already confirmed that it will continue to work on games featuring "Batman." With that in mind, fans are more than happy to take the weekend's awards presentation as hard evidence regarding the next game in the series. Indeed, the buzz around the Joker's script was so strong at one point that, for a while, "#arkhamworld" was trending on Twitter.

At this time, WB Games is staying mum on the situation, so right now it's all pretty much speculation. But one thing's for sure -- the next Dark Knight game can't come soon enough.

"Batman: Arkham City" is in stores now for PC, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. It's also available for download through OnLive.

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