|“||Riddler: Riddle me this. Why would a Batman visit an abandoned orphanage?
(Shows live footage of Catwoman blindfolded and tied up)
Catwoman: Eddie, sweetie, you've confused me with Robin. The big guy and I aren't all that close.
(Cuts back to Riddler)
Riddler: Oh, I know! It's because of what will happen to his feline friend if he doesn't get here in time. Shocked, Dark Knight? Stunned? You didn't expect this, did you? That is because you are no match for me, Edward Nigma, the Riddler and your intellectual superior. Did you think I would just forget our last meeting, Dark Knight? You HUMILIATED me. I know you will not beat me this time. It is utterly impossible. You cannot do it. I have won already. I will mock your attempts to solve my conundrums. I will stand triumphant over your bloodied corpse. And as the dim light fades for good in your tiny dullard's mind, your final thought will be how I have bested you. Come to the orphanage, detective. Or she dies.
|~ The Riddler's citywide broadcast to Batman, revealing that he has kidnapped Catwoman, boasting that he will win, and demanding that he come to the Pinkney Orphanage to see what he has planned for both of them in Batman: Arkham Knight.|
|“||Riddle me this!||„|
|~ The Riddler's catchphrase.|
He is one of Gotham City's most professional criminals who is obsessed with proving to the world that he is smarter than all people, specifically Batman. He tasks the Caped Crusader to optionally find his personal trophies and solve certain riddles in a series of challenging puzzles.
He serves as an unseen voice-over antagonist in Batman: Arkham Asylum, and as a prominent antagonist in Batman: Arkham City, Batman: Arkham Origins, and Batman: Arkham Knight. He also appears as a major antagonist in the 2014 animated film Batman: Assault on Arkham, as the unseen voice-over main antagonist of Arkham Knight's sequel DLC episode Catwoman's Revenge, and as an unseen voice-over antagonist in Batman: Arkham VR.
Becoming the Riddler
|“||Think of me as an information broker. I've got data handlers everywhere--feeding me all kinds of interesting stuff!||„|
|~ Edward Enigma|
Edward makes his first chronological appearance in the prequel Batman: Arkham Origins where he enters the city as a new criminal who goes only under the alias "Enigma". After gathering endless amounts of blackmail information that makes Gotham's officials look bad, Enigma plans to publicly release this info on Christmas Eve, coincidentally the same night the Bat is being hunt down by Black Mask hired assassins, so the Gotham citizens will lose all hope in their officials and ultimately end up in the fall of the city politically. The genius criminal realizes that the only real obstacle standing in the way of his devious plan is Batman himself. So, he hires armies of brutal henchmen, plants Batwing jamming jammers around town, and cleverly hides the information's servers in order to slow down his new enemy, whom he later considers his first mentally challenging foe. However, Enigma's plan led to failure, as the Bat used his master interrogation and hacking skills to track down Edward's location and defeat him. After he was apprehended, the newly proclaimed "Riddler" was put into Arkham Asylum only to constantly break out again and cause chaos amongst the city, fueling the rivalry between the Dark Knight and himself.
Working for Waller
|“||Haven't you solved it yet? The Black Spider is Batman!||„|
|~ The Riddler to the Suicide Squad.|
In Batman: Assault on Arkham, which takes place 2 years before the events of Batman: Arkham Asylum, the Riddler was forced to work for Amanda Waller. When he was recurring, Waller implanted a nano-bomb inside his neck so that he wouldn't betray her or the Suicide Squad. During his time working for Waller, Riddler served her as her broker. One day however, Riddler discovered a way to diffused the bombs, and managed to disarm the bomb in his neck. Eventually Waller discovered that the Riddler diffused his nano-bomb, and sent a squadron of military soldiers to kill the Riddler. Just as they were about to kill the Riddler, Batman broke in and saved him. Riddler attempted to escape, but Batman managed to capture Riddler and interrogated him, believing that the Riddler knows the location of a bomb that the Joker had stolen. Unable to get any answers, Riddler was sent back into Arkham.
Desperate to kill the Riddler, Waller sent several members of the Suicide Squad (including Deadshot, Harley Quinn, Captain Boomerang, Black Spider, Killer Frost and King Shark) to Arkham. While most of the members were sent under false pretense that the Riddler had stolen top secret information about her Suicide Squad operation, Killer Frost was assigned to kill the Riddler. During a confrontation with Batman, Killer Frost made her way to the Riddler's cell. Before she was about to kill him, the Riddler told her that he knows how to defuse the bombs.
After which, Riddler and Frost made their way to the Medical Ward. They eventually managed to regroup with the other members of the Suicide Squad. Riddler explained that he can diffuse the bombs in their neck, if they can get him to the Medical Ward. After dealing with some SCU officers, they managed to make their way to the Medical center. When the group entered the facility, The Riddler explained that he was going to perform some electroshock therapy to fry their bombs. All the members, except for Black Spider (as Black Spider volunteered to keep guard) were strapped onto Ol' Sparky, and were given 1,000 volts of current to deactivate the bombs. However, Waller realized what was going on and rigged the bombs to explode. By this point, all the bombs were deactivated...... except for King Shark's bomb, which resulted in King Shark getting killed. Realizing that Shark's bomb went off the other members questioned why Black Spider's bomb didn't go off. It was there when the Riddler realized that the Black Spider was Batman in disguised. The Riddler pulled out a gun and attempted to kill Batman. However, Batman managed to dodged his shots, tossed a Batarang at him, and then knocked him out.
Despite this, The Riddler managed to escape Arkham during The Joker's outbreak.
Escaping from Arkham Asylum
|“||Are you ready for some more? Explore! Find my challenges. And when you fail to solve them and lie blubbering like an ignorant child on the floor, you will know that The Riddler is better than you!||„|
|~ The Riddler|
The Riddler makes his second chronological appearance as an unseen voice-over antagonist in Batman: Arkham Asylum where he, like all criminals, breaks out of the asylum in the Joker's intelligently orchestrated riot. Instead of staying on the hellish island like most, he leaves and hides out in his secret headquarters where hacks into the Dark Knight's communications to challenges him to solve all of his riddles, find all of his maps, and discover all of his cleverly hidden trophies. This is optional to the player, however, but Nigma will constantly taunt them for their "idiocy" until all of the puzzles are solved, Batman sends the cops a tracked signal planted on Riddler's HQ, and the police force burst into his unidentified placement before arresting him.
Taking hostages in Arkham City
|“||Do you know any other inmate in your twisted little penitentiary who is a genius enough to arrange this little chat?||„|
|~ Riddler to Hugo Strange.|
The Riddler makes his third chronological appearance in Batman: Arkham City. After the asylum and Blackgate are closed down and all inmates from both places of incarceration are transffered to Arkham City, an isolated area of Gotham where the criminals are free to roam, the Riddler sets his crime syndicate up again and sends his men out to infiltrate the ranks of the Joker's, Two-Face's, and Penguin's respective gangs to keep tabs on their gang war. With even more complicated traps and even larger burning hatred for Batman, the Riddler turns his evilness up a notch and captures a band of innocent security officers and doctors, setting them around in city in SAW-like deathtraps where the World's Greatest Detective must find them and save them before they're brutally murdered.
Batman first encountered the Riddler at the abandoned church where the Riddler appeared on a projection screen and told Batman about the captured hostages and promising to release them if he solves his riddles. He then gives Batman his first riddle to solve: "I'm an instrument whose music comes from the heart." Batman solved the riddle by walking over to the pipe organ in front of him and discovered the answer was sheet music. Riddler congratulates him and tells him that the first hostage is being held at the courthouse.
As Batman arrives at the church, he finds police officer, Eddie Burlow, being held captive by Two Face's men who are unaware of working under the Riddler's influence as one of Riddler's men were among that group. After Batman defeated them, he frees Eddie Burlow who explains to Batman that he is the one responsible for Riddler taking hostages and that the Riddler told him numbers to tell Batman: 3-2-5, 7-2-5. Batman decrypts them as radio frequencies, which reveals a riddle saying "if you know me, you'll want to share me. But if you share me, I'll be gone. What am I?". Batman solves the riddle with a puzzle box called the Enigma Machine the Riddler gave to Officer Burlow, which answering a riddle will show the location of the next hostage.
As Batman went searching for the next few hostages, he finds them held captive at various buildings with a green painted question mark on a wall that reveals to be a passageway inside. Inside the buildings, there are several rooms with death traps that the hostages are stuck in. As Batman saves medic Adam Hamasaki, Adam Hamasaki tells Batman the numbers to the frequency: 6-2-5, 9-2-5. Batman solves it and then uses the Enigma Machine to answer the next riddle: "The more there is, the less you see. What could I be?". The answer is darkness.
At the next building where Batman finds officer William North at, Batman frees officer North, who tells him the numbers of the next radio frequency: 8-6-0, 1-2-0. The frequency leads to a riddle: "I have a head, a tail, but never any legs. Do you know what I am?" Batman solves it as penny. Once Batman solves it, the Riddler tells him to bring a towel to save the next hostage, hinting that the next room involves water.
Batman makes his way to the next hostage. As Batman frees the doctor there, she tells him the numbers: 6-0-6, 1-2-0. Batman solves it, revealing the riddle: "I'll be right under your feet, in the midday sun; you cannot lose me, no matter how far you run. What am I?" Batman decrypts the answer with the Enigma machine as shadow.
Upon arriving at the next building and saving the doctor there, the doctor tells Batman the numbers to the next frequency: 1-1-5, 7-8-0. The radio frequency states its riddle: "Hit me hard and I will crack. But you'll never stop me from staring back. What am I?". Mirror is the answer. After solving it, Riddler tells Batman that he'll be shocked as the final hostage will be if he doesn't come to save her, meaning that the final hostage is being tortured with electricity.
As Batman is on his way to save the final hostage, Anne Bishop, however, it was revealed that the Riddler didn't give her a code, as he expected Batman to fail his final challenge. As Batman leaves the room, the Riddler's projection appears, vowing to work on a way to have revenge on the Dark Knight.
After the Dark Knight saves a good handful, he moves on to the final location where the rest of the hostages and the Riddler himself are. After entering, Batman witnesses that all of the hostages all are forced to push a lawnmower like contraption on a railing. The gadget is strapped with explosives, and if the hostages were to stop for even a second, it'll detonate. After Batman managed to sneaks up to the Riddler's office and incapacitates him, Batman frees all the hostages, including Aaron Cash (who was one of the hostages there), and straps Edward to his own contraption, forcing him to tirelessly walk around with it at the possible cost of his life (but unbeknownst to him, it's deactivated). The Riddler was likely arrested afterwards.
Challenging Batman on Halloween
|“||I am the smartest! I am the best! I AM THE RIDDLER!||„|
|~ The Riddler|
The Riddler returns for his fourth and final chronological appearance in Batman: Arkham Knight. He appears as a member of Scarecrow's Army. Once again, he has riddled the city with Riddler trophies and additionally has surgically planted explosives into the heads of rioters in Gotham City. Batman must find these rioters and shock them with an electric batarang to defuse the bombs.
Also, Riddler has created an army of robots which he intends to use against Batman. He invited Catwoman for a "job", claiming that he wanted to employ her to steal a device for the robots so that they would be working again. However, the robots were completely functional, and one of them grabbed Catwoman once she arrived. Riddler has the robots and one of his henchmen take Catwoman to the abandoned Cyrus Pinkney Orphanage on Miagani Island. There, she is blindfolded and tied to an electric chair embedded in the main room. She then has an explosive collar placed around her neck, which needed nine keys to be defused. Batman is forced to come to the orphanage as per Riddler's broadcast in which he threatens to kill her if he doesn't. He complies and arrives, unblindfolding and untying her from the electric chair. Shortly after, the two are pitted against Riddler's robots. After destroying them through teamwork, Riddler informs the Dark Knight of the objective of his twisted game. To save Catwoman, Batman must solve tasks in special Riddler rooms throughout the city and inside the orphanage, obtaining a key after each solved task. After obtaining all keys and removing the collar, Catwoman and Batman are faced by Riddler who has built a giant mech suit to be able to take on Batman in a physical fight. However, he swiftly uses a hidden elevator to enter his hidden bunker, claiming that he would only fight Batman should the Dark Knight solve all his riddles. After finding all Riddler trophies and solving all riddles (243 in total), Riddler resurfaces and takes on Batman and Catwoman in a fight, losing to their combined forces. Batman knocks out Riddler and delivers him to the GCPD where he is locked up with the rest of the supervillains. Following Scarecrow's defeat and Batman's identity is revealed, the Riddler is the only villain who refuses to accept that Bruce Wayne and Batman are the same person. It's completely unknown if he refused to believe it because he thought that Bruce Wayne being Batman didn't have any sense or that he was jealous that the Scarecrow ended up being the one who unmasked Batman instead of him.
Though his intellect is staggering, Nigma's IQ was only dwarfed by his insanity, inferiority complex, violent behavior and intense narcissistic hubris. Despite this he was emotionally immature and a child at heart. Still traumatized by his cruel childhood and his abusive father who undermined him at every turn. Though in his eyes, he is a flawless and infallible human "colossus" (or in his own words "The World's Greatest Everything") Nigma displays multiple flawed anti-social behavior, one of them his childlike behavior and because of this his characteristics, even into adult years similarly represents that of an adolescent teenager. Amongst these traits of his childishness are competitiveness, recklessness, stubbornness, pride, rash outbursts, fiery temper, aggressive tantrums and sullenness. Despite being megalomaniacal, psychopathic and egocentric, at his core Nigma is deeply insecure and emotionally scarred. Having never received the recognition he (or at least believed he deserved) it stands to reason that he pathologically has to prove how smart he is, especially to himself and displays what appears to be an inferiority complex in contrast to his overconfident demeanor. Also despite being defeated, incapacitated and humiliated multiple times his pride is never diminished nor is his magnificently over-fed ego and will constantly think that he would come out on top, never thinking that history would repeat itself. He shows cowardice at times, a prime example is when Catwoman, out of revenge for kidnapping her on Halloween steals all his funds, he begs her for mercy.
His hypocritical arrogance can be evident at times. While he assures his hostage, Catwoman that he does not cheat he actually admits during patient logs to Doctor Young that he once did cheat in his school's competition as to impress his father who saw through this and hit him for lying. Later in the game he actually places his adversary, Batman in a "fight he couldn't win" by swarming him with Riddler-Bots that only Catwoman could hit. Nigma defends this while being taken to the GCPD stating that Batman should have been able to hack into the robots mainframe and defeat them all. Undeniably his greatest weakness was that he considered himself undefeatable (ignoring that he has been countless times in the past) and his arrogance makes him grotesquely reckless and overconfident. Examples include when Batman had defeated the final Riddle Room and rescued the hostage, he gave her no code, showing that he had no doubt in his mind that Batman would not be able to defeat his final room. His egomania was so powerful that in captivity at the GCPD while being confronted by Aaron Cash with a taser he still continues to defy his captor which leads to him being electrocuted.
As the Arkham series continues, or more specifically as he continued kept getting defeated, Nigma becomes more deluded and his mental health state deteriorates even further. While in Arkham Origins, he focuses solely on releasing blackmail data to the general public, in later games he obsesses totally over assuring intellectual dominance over Batman. As well at the beginning of Arkham Knight, he denies having an ego and refers to himself as Batman's "one true enemy" when in reality, though he understands that Nigma is dangerous moreover considers him a plight annoyance and normally handles him after the major threats (Joker, Scarecrow, Bane etc.). This is further emphasized when Scarecrow reveals Batman's identity as Bruce Wayne to the world and Nigma mocks him over thinking he could hide his true identity from him, indicating that he was the one who unmasked Batman while in Arkham City, when confronting Strange through the Interview Tapes he has no idea of the Dark Knight's real name something which stayed this way throughout the series. However it is possible that Nigma believed that he always knew Batman was Bruce Wayne because in AO he has a chart of two names whom he believed were the Bat; Wayne and Harvey Dent being them. However he does not confirm his own theory so it does not count.
Though the full aspects of Nigma's past have not been divulged, it's been hinted he was constantly bullied, by both his father and peers. In these regards it is a second factor of his intense resentment towards the Caped Crusader, not only how Batman constantly undermines his intelligence by defeating, imprisoning and humiliating him but how he has begun to compare the Dark Knight to his childhood bullies, specifically how he constantly uses physical force to arrest him, something that only worsened his obsession in defeating him. He even goes as far to describe Batman as both a "pugilist" and a "thug" and admits that he has a perfect memory of every time the latter hurt him. Amongst other things Nigma possesses deep-rooted hatred for his father, shown during his final battle with Batman at the orphanage he scream in his direction, "DIE FATHER! I mean Batman!".
Despite his signature penchant for riddles and tendency to place his victims in extremely complicated death traps, Nigma was also highly knowledgeable of people's metaphorical "skeletons" in their closets, dark pasts and secrets. He was able to amass enough data as to use it as extortion and blackmail in Arkham Origins which he planned to release to the general public. It's unknown what Nigma's incentive is in this, there have been hints that Nigma considered this another form of vigilantism but states that his methods were more "refined" than that of Batman's however he also knew it would cause anarchy, proving him to be the psychopathic cyber-terrorist he is. His knowledge of people's buried secrets was further shown during the Interview Tape with Strange in which he reveals he knows of him manipulating Jervis Tetch to use his mind control formula as to manipulate Quincy Sharp into opening Arkham City, as well he was also aware of Strange's custom-made Batsuit that he cried into, doubting that he "wasn't worthy" [to be Batman]. Nigma however was also extremely frustrated about how, unlike Strange he had no idea who the Batman was and when he discovered such he demanded for Strange to tell him, which he refused, leaving him totally blank for words.
|“||Can you hear me, Batman? I know you can. It is I, Edward Nigma, the Riddler! And, more importantly your intellectual superior.||„|
|~ Riddler to Batman.|
|“||(sarcastically) "So you did it. Well done. I would expect a child to work that one out, let alone the world's greatest detective.||„|
|~ Riddler sarcastically congratulating Batman.|
|“||Does your head hurt, Batman? Understandable. You're no match for me.||„|
|~ Riddler's arrogance.|
|“||Can we just agree I'm cleverer than you?||„|
|~ Riddler boasting.|
|“||It's the E. Nigma Show!||„|
|~ The Riddler.|
|“||I am Edward Nigma. The world's greatest detective.||„|
|~ The Riddler.|
|“||I pity you trying to defeat my challenges."
There's no shame in cheating. If you admit you cannot solve my challenges." Fiddle diddle diddle. Answer my riddle." You're response is as predictable as it as banal. Goodbye." You're quickly approaching the point of no return. I'd turn back if I were you!" I'm disappointed, Batman. You do realize there are other ways to overcome obstacles beyond smashing them!?" Crawling around in vents like a common rat. How...expected!" Puzzling, isn't it?" Well, well. If it isn't the King Thug himself." You're cheating aren't you? You're getting help from someone. But who...who's smart enough to outsmart me!?" You must be feeling pretty good about yourself, Batman. I mean, you took down all the towers! Which means you've foiled my plan...except, oh wait, I already have all the data I need. And as soon as I'm done uploading it-so will everyone in Gotham." Haven't you solved it yet? The Black Spider is Batman!"
Game Over Lines
- The Riddler is one of the two villains of the saga to appear in all four titles and play an antagonistic role against Batman, the other being the Joker.
- In all four titles, Nashton is portrayed by Wally Wingert, who also voiced one of the Almighty Tallest in Invader Zim.
- The Riddler has a very similar voice to the Cluster Ambassador in My Life As A Teenage Robot also voiced by Wally Wingert.
- As one would expect, the closer the player gets to beating the Riddler, the angrier and more aggressive he gets. At first, he is a level headed taunter, but later, he is bursting into outraged tantrums. He even slightly breaks the fourth wall by accusing the player of looking the answers up on the Internet, though he may not necessarily be breaking the fourth wall in this ocassions, as Google is stated to exist in the Arkhamverse in Batman: Assault on Arkham.
- As the game series progresses, The Riddler become more and more filthy. It's possible that the Riddler has become so obsessed with outsmarting Batman with his riddles and traps, that he began to ignore his personal hygiene.
- Outside Xbox, a YouTube gaming topics channel, made an opinion-based video stating 6 reasons on why they think Riddler, or at least the Arkhamverse version, is easily the most worthless Batman villain.
- Reason 1: "His plans make absolutely no sense (Riddled with problems). In Origins, he plans to blackmail key city figures with data packs of valuable information...that he leaves lying on the street, in Asylum, he escapes the island and leaves trophies everywhere, that let the authorities track his location and later repeats this plan in City, which ends poorly again, and finally, he built lots of elaborate race tracks in Knight for no reason and kidnaps Catwoman."
- Reason 2: "He is terrible at riddles (May not know what a riddle is). Many of the riddles he gives are poorly written or make no sense, "What's dead? YOU", "What walks on four legs, then two legs and finally three legs", Answer: A baby if you cut off it's legs and then give it a crutch."
- Reason 3: "He lets Batman try to solve his puzzles over and over with no penalties, this is pretty self-explanatory."
- Reason 4: "He builds a Batman-proof robot (Uses it on Catwoman). In Knight, Riddler builds an army of Batman-proof robots, which sounds great, but he fails to foresee a scenario in which someone other than Batman fights the robots, like Catwoman. However, he also builds Catwoman-proof robots, that he only uses when Batman is around, instead of just building a Batman and Catwoman-proof robots."
- Reason 5: "He is allergic to punches. Since most Batman villains are characters who can go toe to toe with Batman mentally or physically, Riddler is useless because, as stated before, he is an complete idiot and can't take a solid punch without going to pieces."
- Reason 6: "Batman's identity eludes him (STILL). Despite being a genius with a knack for solving puzzles, Riddler can't deduce Batman's obvious secret identity and comes up with random and stupid explanations for how he gets his equipment, and even when Batman is unmasked for all the world to see, Riddler denies who he really is, simply because he didn't figure it out himself."
- Surprisingly in Batman: Arkham Knight, one of Riddler's riddle clues say, "Joining your mission came with a cost, this empty reminder shows just what she lost," which is a reference to Barbara Gordon fighting alongside Batman as Batgirl, her career coming to an end after bring shot in the spine, paralyzing her. Scanning her batsuit solves the riddle. This could just be a puzzle by the developers themselves, or the Riddler was well aware of who Barbara was before she became paralized; however, it seems unlikely as he never mentions or references the event to the caped crusader.
- In Batman: Arkham Knight, during the last Riddler challenge "Condemned", if you head in the wrong direction, Riddler will randomly ask Batman if he has to hover in front of the Batmobile waving a flag and telling him where to go. This could be a reference to the Nintendo series of kart racing games, Mario Kart. In those games if you head in the wrong direction, Lakitu hovers in front of you and holds up a sign telling you to turn around.
Groups and Gangs