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War Games: The Aftermath
#1's been a few weeks since the conclusion of the "War Games" event, and now we fans can start to see some of the repercussions of the arc. It promised to change things in a big way, and while the story itself may not have been the best, WG surely did change things. In a big way.

For those of you who don't know...

The War Game in question was a scenario set up by Batman to take over the whole of Gotham crime and unite it under a leader of his choosing, his plant in the criminal underworld Orpheus. Unfortunately, this plan was set in motion by Stephanie Brown without his knowledge, as her attempt to show Bats that she was indeed fit to be Robin. Without Batman's guiding hand to move things along in the proper way, things escalated into a gang war that consumed the city, and let our heroes over worked and vastly outnumbered.

By the time Batman finally figured things out and brought everything to a close, Stephanie Brown (my beloved Spoiler and Robin IV) and Orpheus(Batman's man on the inside) lay dead. The Batman himself, as well as Nightwing and Batgirl, had been seen on live television thus destroying his "urban legend" status, Tim Drake's personal life fell to peices folowing the deaths of several loved ones, the Penguin had been exiled, Nightwing had to come to grips with his involvement in the murder of his longtime foe Blockbuster, and Oracle's watchtower had been outted (mistakenly as the Batcave) and destroyed. And when the dust settled, Black Mask had established himself as the new Boss of Bosses in Gotham.

If that wasn't enough, Robin then decides to leave Gotham for Bludhaven in an attempt to distance himself from Batman for a while, which in turn prompts Bats to send Batgirl to work with him and keep an eye on him. Nightwing has seemingly given up his mantle and city, leaving Robin and Batgirl to deal with a 'Haven coming under the influence of Cobblepot, Batman has once again choosen to take on the city of Gotham alone, and Oracle is left without a workcenter from which to operate.[/spoiler]

My thoughts on the after effects are a bit mixed. On the one hand, I'm enjoying the direction being attempted with Batgirl and Robin, as well as what's going on in Nightwing's title.....but on the other hand I would have loved to have seen all these characters in one city.....after things had died down a bit and had a few talks with one another about their divergent methods and the events of the gang war.

Impacts from War Games can be felt in the books to be sure, but I would have liked to have seen a bit more verbal resolution between characters before the tides of change pulled them further down their particular paths.

(I apologise for the lack of Catwoman information but I haven't been following her adventures since the end of the arc.)
I only read the Batman chapters of the WarGames story, but felt that this one book suffiently kept me in the loop as to what was going on. I like the changes to the status quo, but really don't care for the deaths that occured. Just like The Truth, I was a big fan.

I like that Batman has to go it alone for a while, especially considering his newly reaquired "wanted vigilante" status. And if you guys aren't reading Batman, by Winnick and Mahnke, you are doing yourself a disservice. This new creative team had better stick around a while, because in my opinion, they are some of DC's most talented creators.

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