When Batman: Gotham Knight was delayed into next year, I was a little disappointed. It was then I realized there was a whole Batman game I still had yet to play. Booting up Batman: Arkham Origins, I was enjoying the slightly more linear Dark Knight action I loved from the Rocksteady games. Then I came face to face with a man named Slade Wilson. You may know, and loathe, him by a different name: Deathstroke. After struggling with this infamously difficult boss fight for a while, and even reading a few tutorials, something finally clicked and I realized that the fight is actually quite easy. I’m here to ease your pain by explaining just how to kick Deathstroke to the curb with little effort.
First off, it helps to understand why exactly this boss fight seems to be difficult. It comes down to a couple of simple things. For one thing, the game does a pretty terrible job of explaining why you’re performing poorly during the fight. It flashes up a message that says “don’t counter Deathstroke’s counterattacks too early” or something to that effect. While this is technically a correct statement, I’m getting to that, it doesn’t explain what the heck they mean by it. The other thing they’re doing to inadvertently make this fight much harder than it needs to be is to actively train you to do the opposite of what you should be doing in this battle during the rest of the game. With that, let me put how to beat this fight easily into one sentence:
Be patient and wait for the counter button to appear.
Your response to this might be “but Ben, only countering him will make the fight take forever.” I see your point, but you’re misunderstanding me. You’re free to punch the crap out of Deathstroke all you want! Now you’re probably saying “okay, but now he’s doing one of those seemingly random unblockable counters and killing me.” Now this is where that previous sentence takes effect. If there is even a hint of a quick-time event starting, you need to immediately stop hitting buttons and wait for a button prompt. Any time Deathstroke counters you and you don’t get the option to block, it’s because you hit a button during his counter and the game is punishing you for doing so. I promise you, if you wait for a button-prompt to appear on the screen, it will appear as long as you didn’t already hit a button.
The reason this is so unfair, is because up to this point, the game strongly encourages you to hammer away on the counter button during fights. All of a sudden, you have to be very precise with your counter button presses or the game punishes you. Without any prior context for this kind of fight and little-to-no explanation that it suddenly works this way, it makes for a confusingly difficult fight.
I promise if you use this technique, it will make this boss battle go by a lot easier. Then you can get back to satiating your Batman fix before that shiny new one comes out next year. I’ll try to get a video up of the fight with commentary and I’ll add it to this page as well. Good luck and let me know how it goes!