The arch-villain shown in Batman: Arkham City‘s latest trailer could have the upper hand on the Dark Knight from the get-go.

If you thought Batman’s annoyed face looked great in Batman: Arkham City‘s recent brief teaser, wait until you get a look at the extended version shown at the 2010 Spike TV Video Game Awards. Not only does Rocksteady’s CGI work on the Batman: Arkham Asylum sequel look amazing, but the trailer also reveals a villain that is likely Batman’s primary nemesis in the game.

The person the soldier was talking to in the teaser has turned out to be Hugo Strange, known in the Batman comics as an evil psychologist that figures out Bruce Wayne is under the mask and uses this information to toy with him. The team of mercenaries shown was apparently working for Strange.

Strange is seen torturing the captain of what is likely a Tyger mercenary squad, the group that keeps order in the walled-off city prison of Arkham City. The captain’s attempt to take down Batman didn’t work, but it was all just a part of Strange’s plan due to an apparent obsession with the caped crusader. Still, he electrocutes and injects the captain to death to get as much information about Batman out of him as he can. Note to self: Do not become a henchman in the Batman universe.

Strange is using all of the weapons at his disposal, like Tyger, to test Batman and push him to the edge for a currently unknown endgame. After all, the trailer also reveals that Arkham City‘s Hugo Strange knows that Batman is Bruce Wayne just like in the comic books (and possibly Chris Nolan’s upcoming Dark Knight Rises).

This is yet another VGA trailer that has lack-of-gameplay syndrome this year, but Batman is seen taking enemies out in CGI just as he did in Arkham Asylum, so I wouldn’t expect anything less than the quality of the previous title. If Rocksteady has put this much effort into these drop-dead gorgeous cutscenes, it must have a pretty big budget for gameplay as well. Arkham City is expected in 2011.

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