Batman: Arkham Asylum/Gadgets and upgrades
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Throughout Story Mode, you will acquire gadgets and gain experience, which can be spent on upgrades. Gadgets will be given to you as part of the story, while upgrades give you choices between different abilities and boosts. You can earn experience by fighting enemies, solving Riddler challenges, and completing story objectives.
Gadgets are required to complete story objectives and to reach some Riddler challenges. Most gadgets also have a combat application. You can select a gadget to equip from the selector wheel, and then use separate buttons for aiming and activating it. Some gadgets, such as the Explosive Gel and Sonic Batarang have a secondary use which can be activated by yet another button.
- Applicable upgrades
- Combo Batarang
- Batarang Power
You start the game with the Batarang, which can be used to stun an enemy from afar or knock him down, destroy Joker teeth, cut through dangling ropes and hit switches. While aiming, you can move the gray reticle around until it locks onto an enemy or object and turns orange, or you can simply face the direction of your target and tap the throw button. Unless you want to hit a specific enemy (such as the one with the weapon), the quick-Batarang is much faster and is fairly smart about what you're trying to hit. You can upgrade the Batarang for more power, multiple Batarangs and for use in combat.
- Applicable upgrades
- Combo Batarang
- Batarang Power
The Multi-Batarang is available once you've purchased the Twin Batarang upgrade, which upgrades you to two Batarangs at once. Next you can upgrade to the Triple Batarang which lets you throw three Batarangs. The power and combo upgrades also apply to this gadget.
 Explosive Gel
- Applicable upgrades
- Multiple Frequency Detonator
- Auto Proximity Detonator
Explosive Gel is acquired early on in the story from the back of your Batmobile. With this gadget you can blast down walls with support weaknesses and enemies. You can find walls, floors and ceiling with weaknesses by looking in Detective Mode. Depending on how close the explosion is to an enemy, they can be stunned or knocked out by either the explosion itself or debris from a blasted wall. A good way to get a free knockout in Predator mode scenarios, is by spraying the gel on the body of a knocked out guard, and detonating it when another guard comes to investigate his friend's collar.
 Remote Control Batarang
This gadget allows you to control the flight of your Batarang by remote. When you throw the Batarang, your perspective will shift to right behind the Batarang, and you can control its movement. This is a fairly worthless gadget except in one of the Predator challenges in Challenge Mode and in getting the Catch! achievement/trophy.
The Batclaw is acquired through the story and allows you to pull open grates that you couldn't otherwise reach, as well as some crates. It can also be used on enemies by pulling them toward you, making them stumble and eventually fall on the ground stunned. The Batclaw is very useful on enemies on ledges, as a pull perpendicular to the ledge will pull them over for a knockout. Later in the game you also get this upgraded to the Ultra Batclaw through the story, after which it shoots out three lines instead of one. This allows you to pull down walls with weak spots and three enemies at a time. Whether shooting one or three lines, the Batclaw has a quick use button you can double-tap and it will shoot out to the nearest target(s) in the direction you are facing.
 Cryptographic Sequencer
- Applicable upgrades
- Cryptographic Range Amplifier
- Cryptographic Power Amplifier
This device allows you to hack control boxes around the asylum. The control boxes power various things from electric fences to prison cells or other story-related objects. You can find control boxes by tracing the wires (orange in Detective Mode) back to their source. After aiming at a control box, you will see one to five circles filled in on the side of your reticle, denoting the difficulty of the hack. After starting to sequence the cryptography, you use the controls to find the right frequency. You must point the controls in two different directions, each one registering louder or softer noise and harder or softer vibration depending on how close you get. The sequencer's display also goes from black to green as you get closer. Start off by rotating one control through its directions to find the best response, then keep that one there and do the same with the second control to complete the hack.
 Line Launcher
The Line Launcher is acquired through the story, dropped off by the Batwing. The Line Launcher allows you to quickly traverse long distances in a straight line by using your own zip cord. When aiming the launcher, the top and bottom of the reticle need to both light up orange, showing that you have a good attachment both in front of and behind you. If you have one or the other or none, but not both, try repositioning yourself until you have good contact. While sliding along the line, you can cancel it prematurely and drop down where you are. Mainly used to cover gaps too large to jump across, you can also use the Line Launcher to kick any enemies in your way. Always make sure you have somewhere to land when using the launcher, as once you hit the end of the line, you drop straight down.
 Sonic Batarang
- Applicable upgrade
- Sonic Shock Batarang
The Sonic Batarang emits a sound beacon that will draw the attention of the closest guard. When the guard comes to investigate, he will either walk right up to the Batarang or stop a distance away, and after discovering what it is, he will destroy it if he can. If upgrades with shock capability, you can stun any thugs who come within range. By holding the aim button, you will be alerted when the enemy is close enough by the reticle turning orange. The Sonic Batarang has a long cooldown period in between uses, and once you've used the shock mechanic to detonate it, it can no longer be used in that area.
There are twenty possible upgrades that come in six different types, and many upgrades have certain prerequisites before they can be purchased. For gadget upgrades, you will need to have the gadget before the upgrade becomes available (Explosive Gel and Cryptographic Sequencer). Some upgrades also require that you get the previous upgrade before they become available. These are the different types of upgrades:
- Combat: Improves Batman's combat abilities.
- Predator: Adds a stealth takedown ability.
- Armor: Adds to Batman's health bar.
- Batarang: Adds various uses for Batman's Batarang.
- Explosive Gel: Adds abilities to the use of Batman's Explosive Gel.
- Cryptographic Sequencer: Adds abilities to the use of Batman's Cryptographic Sequencer.
You can purchase upgrades by spending experience points gained throughout the story from beating enemies, solving Riddler challenges and completing story objectives.
- Upgrade costs
- Upgrade 1: 2,000
- Upgrade 2: 2,000
- Upgrade 3: 2,500
- Upgrade 4: 3,000
- Upgrade 5: 3,500
- Upgrade 6: 4,000
- Upgrade 7: 4,500
- Upgrade 8+: 5,000
- Experience obtained
- Normal Thug: 25
- Plant Pod: 25
- Pipe Thug: 35
- Armed Thug: 50
- Knife-wielding Thug: 50
- Lunatic: 50
- Joker teeth: 50
- Stun Baton Thug: 75
- Riddler Trophy: 200
- Interview Tape: 200
- Riddle: 200
- Riddler Map: 200
- Chronicle of Arkham: 200
- Titan Thug: 1,000
- Bosses and story objectives: Variable
|Special Combo Throw||Allows you to perform an unblockable throw against an enemy when combo multiplier is high enough.||N/A|
|Special Combo Takedown||Allows you to perform an unblockable instant takedown against an enemy when combo multiplier is high enough.||Special Combo Throw|
|Special Combo Boost||Reduces combo multiplier needed for throw and instant takedown from 5× to 8×.||Special Combo Takedown|
|Combo Batarang||Allows you to use the Batarang to continue your combo after reaching 3× combo multiplier.||N/A|
|Critical Combo Strikes||Allows you to perform a stronger strike worth twice as much damage and twice as much increment to your combo multiplier after attaining a 3× combo multiplier.||N/A|
|Inverted Takedown||Allows you to hang and drop from gargoyles and string up an enemy below if you can see them.||N/A|
|Armor Upgrade V1||Adds a segment to your health bar.||N/A|
|Armor Upgrade V2||Adds a segment to your health bar.||Armor Upgrade V1|
|Armor Upgrade V3||Adds a segment to your health bar.||Armor Upgrade V2|
|Armor Upgrade V4||Adds a segment to your health bar.||Armor Upgrade V3|
|Batarang Power||Increases the power of the Batarang, resulting in longer stuns.||N/A|
|Twin Batarang||Allows you to throw two Batarangs at once.||N/A|
|Triple Batarang||Allows you to throw three Batarangs at once.||Twin Batarang|
|Remote Control Batarang||Allows you to control a single Batarang in-flight after being thrown.||N/A|
|Sonic Batarang||Allows you to throw a Batarang with a suicide collar decoy beacon that will draw the nearest guard.||Thugs start wearing suicide collars|
|Sonic Shock Batarang||Adds the ability to shock an enemy approaching the Sonic Batarang to knock them out.||Sonic Batarang|
|Multiple Frequency Detonator||Allows you to select one or two gels to detonate instead of all of them.||Explosive Gel and rescue Dr. Young the first time|
|Auto Proximity Detonator||Explosive Gel automatically detonates as soon as an enemy gets close enough.||Explosive Gel|
|Cryptographic Range Amplifier||Increases the range in which you can use the Cryptographic Sequencer.||Cryptographic Sequencer|
|Cryptographic Proximity Amplifier||Reduces the direction possibilities for each control from eight to four.||Cryptographic Sequencer|