Batman: Return of the Joker

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a game by Sunsoft, and Probe Entertainment Ltd.
Genre: Platformer
Platforms: NESNES, GameBoy
Editor Rating: 7.3/10, based on 8 reviews
User Rating: 7.3/10 - 3 votes
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See also: Marvel Games, Batman Games

Batman: Return of the Joker by Sunsoft puts the Dark Knight back on the streets in yet another battle against his arch-nemesis the Joker. Sure the plot line sounds familiar, but this Bat-adventure is loaded with enough surprises to challenge even the most seasoned Caped Crusaders.

Deja Vu

Fans of the Batman comic book will find this game closely mimics the look and feel of the classic strip that made the Dark Knight a legend in his own time. Sunsoft called upon the same team of programmers that created the original NES Batman to create the sequel. The crew kept some of the best features of the original game but also added some exciting new twists.

Batman himself is about four times as big as he is in the original adventure, and his moves, whether he's crouching, taking a quick glance over his shoulder, or sliding along the ground, are all new. Gorgeous graphics made possible via 3 megs of memory and the SUN5 chip -- SunSoft's custom MMC5 chip -- are about as close to 16-bit as the NES is gonna' get!

This one player game features seven stages of vertically and horizontally scrolling walking, jumping, and flying action. Each stage has two sub-stages, and a third sub-stage where Batman fights a boss or one of the Joker's sinister mechanical machines. The boss battles have a great comic book feel with an unusual system of point-countdown power meters for the boss and Batman.

ProTip: Beat Stage 3-3's boss by always jumping behind him when he's about to fire his gun. It's a little cowardly but blast away from behind!

Batman's "Wonderful Toys"

Batman's task is pretty straight-forward -- battle his way through each stage and survive to defeat the Joker. The Caped Crusader has a Life Meter and takes hits from dangerous obstacles or enemies. There's no way to recharge his Meter.

The Dark Knight has an entirely different Bat-Combat system that's a combo of some slick new moves and the different kinds of ammo he can fire out of his Wrist Projector. Each of the four different kinds of shots (Cross Bow, Bata-rang, Sonic Neutralizer, and Shield Star) have different strengths and weaknesses. Batman can change his ammunition frequently by blasting crates that carry Wrist Projector Ammunition icons. The crafty Caped Crusader will quickly learn which ammunition works best where.

  • Shoot the ammunition icons repeatedly to get them to change to the different types of ammo.
  • The Shield Star is the least useful ammo because its firepower is the least concentrated.
  • Use the Sonic Neutralizer during Stage 1-2. It enables you to clear a path far in front of you while you hang back behind the deadly Zeppelin bomb blasts.

Batman can also supercharge each of the four different kinds of shots to make them extra powerful. Just lean on Button B for a while and then get ready for some special effects. Sometimes when Batman nails an enemy an energy capsule appears. If Batman can grab eight energy capsules he gets the ultimate weapon -- invincibility for a few seconds along with a deadly trail of Sonic Neutralizer fire that blows everything and everyone to bits.

  • To defeat the Joker's knife-throwing crony in Stage 3-2, just hop across the gap and stand behind the crate. Now power-up the Sonic Neutralizer weapon and take him out risk-free!
  • Destroy the statues in Stage 1-1 by sliding up to their base and using a super-powered blast to blow them to smithereens.

The Caped Crusader's smart enough to know he's got to rely on more than just firepower. He can't climb walls in this sequel, but he can crouch, jump, and do a Slide Attack move that helps him out of all kinds of tight spots.

  • When you reach this area of Stage 3-2, creep under the deadly spikes with a little help from Batman's slide attack.
  • If you don't have a strong weapon when you reach Stage 6-2 try to jump to the left of the screen and stay ahead of the mad bomber. Just jump over the spiked balls as they fall. Of course, you'll never beat the Joker in Stage 6-3 if you don't have a strong weapon!

The Dark Knight Returns

More often than not sequels to classic games just don't stand up to the original. Fortunately, top of the line graphics bring Batman: Return of the Joker to life as an original saga whose smokin' guns deliver different (and in some places more) bang for the buck. And the theme music's as cool as the rest of the game. We've got just one complaint. Why give the game endless continues and a password system? The crime-fighting here is fairly tough, but it would be a lot tougher if you weren't able to begin again and again at the same spot. Aspiring Dark Knights will find this game definitely isn't as challenging as the original because of the password system, but don't let that hold you back. This is still one of the best NES games of the year. And that's no joke!

Download Batman: Return of the Joker


System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP
  • P-200, 32 MB RAM


System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

Game Reviews


The streets of Gotham are once again in a state of chaos. The maniacal Joker has assembled his army of thugs and sent the Gotham crime rate soaring. The police can do nothing and the only one who can stop the Joker's sinister plans is Batman. Join the Caped Crusader in this new adventure that introduces new characters and special weapons developed by the Bat Computer. Fight your way through the Joker's heavily armed super fortress and go face to face with the meanest villain ever on the NES.

  • Manufacturer: Sunsoft
  • Machine: GameBoy
  • Theme: Action
  • Available: June 1992
  • No. of Levels: 5

The popular NES title is now available on the GameBoy! You control the Dark Knight on a mission to rid Gotham City of the Joker's evil henchmen. You must fight through five stages in an attempt to reach the Joker before he can take over Gotham City! Use various weapons that you pick up along the way such as Batarangs and the Bat-rope. The Joker must be stopped and Batman is just the guy to do it!

People say:


I loved the original Batman cart on GameBoy and while the sequel is not much of a stretch beyond the territory laid down in the first entry, it is still an enjoyably intense piece of video gaming. Great graphics compliment the action as well as equally impressive sounds and musical scores. A GameBoy winner!


Now this is what a spectacular GameBoy cart is like! It has controllable action, surprisingly good graphics, excellent game play, and a good license behind it. The good game music is an added plus. The difficulty curve starts off easy and gets harder at a reasonable rate. Don't miss this super cart!


Now this is what a GameBoy game should be! This sequel to the first Batman game is not quite as intense, but every bit as good. The graphics are good for the GameBoy and Sunsoft has packed tons of action into this portable cart. The music is excellent and the game play is solid. Can't wait for 16-Bit!


I really enjoyed the first Batman for Game Boy and the sequel is no slouch! The game has enough techniques and variety to keep it ahead of the standard Game Boy line. The graphics hurt it enough to knock it down a couple of notches, but if you don't mind B&W, Batman 2 will be a hot game for you.

It takes an experienced company to make a great GameBoy cart. Granted, with a big name license and a previous track record of successful Batman games, Sunsoft had some of the hard work already done for them, but strip away the glitter and it is the game play which determines if the cart will sell. In this case it's got it all and it's going to be a hit!

The Caped Crusader is being forced out of retirement as the Joker isn't dead! And this sequel won't just ride on the 'cape-tails' of it's predecessor as it's all new. This version won't be based on the movie. Rather the story will come from the D.C. comic series, The Dark Knight. All of the backgrounds and depictions will reflect a comic book essence. While still retaining the dark, ominous backgrounds and game play from the original, the sequel will be improved. Featuring dual action scrolling with extra help from a MMC 5 chip, Batman, Return of the Joker will be one of the most sought after games this Christmas!

The Joker is dead! or is he? Find out in this sequel. Batman will face many new battles as he takes on the toughest criminal minds in the ultimate test of skill and power.

The Joker's back -- and that's no laughing matter! However, the Caped Crusader is on the job. Here's a look at a preliminary version of Batman: Return of the Joker.

The Dark Knight Returns

Sunsoft switched on its Bat-signal and summoned for this sequel the same team of programmers who worked on Batman. But rather than rehashing the previous game they made some radical improvements. The most noticeable change is the size of the sprites -- they're at least twice as large as those in the original!

There's also a new Bat-combat system. Batman gets it done with a Bat-rang Wrist Projector that powers-up to become several types of weapons -- homing Batarangs, the Cross Bow, the Sonic Neutralizes and Shield Stars. Hold down the fire button and each weapon unleashes its own heavy duty blast. For close quarter combat, Batman can pull a devastating slide kick. Batman can also collect Energy Capsules to become temporarily invincible! Does Batman really need all the firepower? What do you think!

This manhunt takes place across seven stages, each with at least two rounds. The action begins in the Cathedral (where the previous game left off) and trashes dangerous hot spots such as Snow Mountain and the Island of Ha-Hacienda. Five stages hide treacherous bosses including the explosive Mine-droid, the cruelly calculating Master C.RU., and, of course, old laughing boy himself, the Joker.

The Joker's Last Laughs?

Batman: Return of the Joker looks awesome!

Batman may have thought the Joker was done for, but he's back. Now the caped crusader must once again save Gotham City.

Snapshots and Media

NES/Famicom/Dendy Screenshots

GameBoy Screenshots