5704 in-depth character profiles from comics, games, movies

Early Batman looking very dramatic

Batman

(Bruce Wayne) (Earliest version)


Power Level:
Game system: DC Heroes Role-Playing Game

Context

This character profile is a snapshot of Batman as he appears in the historical 27th issue of Detective Comics, cover-dated May, 1939. It doesn’t go any further.

For ’em folks who asked, we don’t have a full Batman profile at this point because he’s amply covered by the official DC Heroes RPG material – and those stats serve as very important benchmarks. They’re keystones to the system, so they’re not going to move much. So we stick with the occasional profile of a very specific version of Batman, such as this one.


Background

  • Real Name: Bruce Wayne
  • Marital Status: Single, though soon to be engaged to Julie Madison (Secret Origins #6, Detective #31)
  • Known Relatives: None at the time
  • Group Affiliation: None
  • Base Of Operations: Gotham City
  • Height: 6’2” Weight: 195lbs
  • Eyes: Blue Hair: Black


Overview

The “Bat-Man” is a mysterious and adventurous figure. He fights for righteousness and apprehends the wrongdoer, in his lone battle against the evil forces of society.

In his secret identity, he is Bruce Wayne, of the idle rich. Wayne has a close friendship with Gotham City Police Commissioner Gordon.


History

Unknown at the time of his first story. But I think we all know 15 versions of this story, at least, so pick your favorite and run with it.

As a potentially interesting detail, this version of Bruce Wayne was born on April 7th, 1915 (Month from World’s Finest Comics #33, Day of month from Star-Spangled Comics #91, and year from America vs the Justice Society #1).


Description

Batman is a fairly tall man wearing a solid grey jumpsuit, extremely dark blue trunks, boots, gloves (sorry—I just can’t imagine that they were supposed to be purple…), cape, and cowl, with a complicated-looking belt around his waist.

The jumpsuit, itself has a small insignia in the center of the chest resembling a pair of bat-wings. His cape is scalloped to have a similar effect.

The cowl covers the Bat-Man’s entire head, except for his mouth and chin. It makes the remainder of his head appear more rounded. It also has large horn-like “ears,” which stem from near the neckline, reaching their points at about the same height as the cowl rounds off.

In his identity as Bruce Wayne, he is relatively good-looking, and always wears well-made suits.


Personality

It is unknown at this time what the Bat-Man’s personality is really like. He is grim and callous in battle, but makes a good impression as a “nice guy” as Bruce Wayne.

Beyond that — such as his drive to save people from the fate that befell him as a child when his parents were murdered in front of him — would be pure speculation at this point, of course.


Quotes

“A fitting end for his kind.” (as a murderer falls into an acid vat)

“Ho hum ! I’ll leave you to finish your work… I’m going home.” (as Bruce Wayne)


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Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG Print Friendly

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The Bat-Man

Dex: 07 Str: 04 Bod: 04 Motivation: Seeking Justice
Int: 07 Wil: 08 Min: 06 Occupation: Millionaire, presumably
Inf: 08 Aur: 07 Spi: 07 Resources {or Wealth}: 10, minimum
Init: 025 HP: 035

Skills:
Artist (Actor)*: 08, Acrobatics*: 07, Detective*: 07, Martial Artist*: 07, Thief (Stealth)*: 07, Vehicles (Land)*: 07

Advantages:
Expansive Headquarters (Wayne Manor proper, as the Batcave would not be “officially discovered” until 1940), Intensive Training, Lightning Reflexes, Notoriety, Sharp Eye

Connections:
Commissioner Gordon (High, but only as Bruce Wayne)

Drawbacks:
Mistrust, Secret Identity

Equipment:

  • AUTOMOBILE [STR 06, BODY 06, Running: 07, R#2. The Bat-Man’s car was capable of outpacing police vehicles by a good margin. Other than that, it appears to be a standard late-1930s-model coupe of indistinct brand. It’s red, with darker (black?) doors. This will soon be replaced by the better-known dark blue 1938 Lincoln Zephyr conversable coupe]
  • COSTUME [BODY 03, Gliding: 0]
  • Batman will also acquire a number of gadgets, ranging from the Batrope (Detective #28), chemicals from his utility belt (Detective #29), the Bat-Gyro (historically Detective #31, though now created in Batman: Black & White #4), and Batarang (also Detective #31), before the year is out]

Design notes

No gun, because it didn’t appear in the first issue. In fact, the Golden Age Batman only carries a gun in Detective Comics #33. However, I allowed the Gliding cape, just for kicks, since it was mentioned in the “liner notes,” and it is sort of an interesting concept. Also, DEX and INT have been reduced, slightly.

By John Colagioia

Helper(s): Sean MacDonald, Dan, minor details from the now-defunct http://www.intelcities.com/Hobby_Lane/argent/batman.htm

Source of Character: Detective Comics #27, 1939 (only)

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