Blackgate Prison was a key location in the story for the video game, Batman: Arkham Origins, as well as where the story of the video game Batman: Arkham Origins Blackgate took place. The prison was located on an island with five primary sectors: The Harbor to the east, the Industrial Sector, the Cell Blocks, the Administration Sector, and the Arkham Wing.
The security guards wore white uniforms that resembled officer uniforms, although some personnel looked like riot guards. In addition, the head administrator was the Prison Warden.
After Arkham Asylum was closed down due to there not being a need for a dedicated facility to house the criminally insane in Gotham City for quite some time, Blackgate became the defacto penal facility in Gotham.
By the time of the events of Batman: Arkham Origins on Christmas Eve, in large part because of Warden Joseph, who focused on the political role of his job instead of maintaining it as well as the highly corrupt nature of Commissioner Loeb-ran the GCPD, the facility was run down. On Christmas Eve, Warden Joseph ordered for a laxing of security in the facility due to being threatened by the criminal kingpin, Black Mask (or rather, a new criminal mastermind known as "The Joker" who impersonated him). That resulted in A Code 10 Break In by the False Facers as well as a hired hitman named Killer Croc who targeted Loeb, who was on Black Mask's payroll, allegedly because he had imprisoned his own men in the slammer and had wanted to change things, but in actuality, because the Joker, (who impersonated Black Mask at the time), had wanted to get rid of anyone who was an asset to the fallen crime lord. Joker succeeded, with Batman unable to save the Commissioner from being gassed in the Execution Chamber. Joker also freed the originally intended execution prisoner, Calendar Man in the process. Batman managed to take out Croc, which resulted in the latter's arrest. Two other assassins, Deathstroke and Deadshot, were later imprisoned after the Dark Knight defeated them.
Later that night, the Joker, after he was exposed as being Black Mask, was imprisoned at Blackgate at Captain Gordon's order (who acted as the leader of the GCPD after Loeb's death). The Joker also ended up undergoing a psychiatric evaluation by Dr. Harleen Quinzel, an intern for Professor Hugo Strange, which resulted in her being manipulated into becoming an inside person for the Joker during his imprisonment. Black Mask ended up arrested and incarcerated shortly thereafter after Batman foiled his drug production at the Church. Not too long thereafter, A Second Code 10 Break In occurred after the Joker had managed to manipulate Dr. Quinzel into supplying him with the security codes for the prison, which resulted in a largely destructive riot with bed mattresses arranged in such a manner that resembled a madhouse floor/wall, tons of graffiti, lots of people killed (some by being set on fire), and a lot of carnage and the release of all the prisoners save for Deathstroke. Batman managed to return to the prison to quell the riot and stop the Joker.
The Joker attempted to force Batman into breaking his one rule against killing criminals by having him fight Bane, by using a heart monitor that was attached to the South American mercenary/terrorist to charge up an electric chair. In order to ensure Batman's only option was to fight Bane, the Joker also set up a bomb in the facility that was timed to go off if either Bane or Batman tried to remove the heart monitor, with enough destructive power to completely obliterate the facility. Batman managed to trick Joker into believing that he had killed Bane by using one of his would-be assassins, the deceased Electrocutioner's Shock Gloves to place Bane into cardiopulmonary arrest.
Batman then resuscitated Bane, although the latter ended up injecting himself with TN-1 out of desperation. All of the exits were sealed, although Warden Joseph ended up shot by a sniper. Batman managed to defeat Bane, the latter of whom was left with amnesia regarding Batman's identity due to the effects of TN-1. Batman was ambushed by Croc, although he was forced to let him go after he was grazed by a sniper shot. Batman then took out the rest of the prisoners before he fought and subdued the Joker in the Prison Chapel. Bane and Joker ended up arrested and were returned to their cells.
After the events of Arkham Origins (when 2 riots occurred in Blackgate on the same night), there were many discussions among Blackgate's inmates, thugs, police officers, and talk show hosts based on the idea that Arkham Asylum could be reopened. Later that evening, Quincy Sharp, a political activist, revealed his intentions to reopen Arkham Asylum, partially due to the manipulation of one of the assassins, Shiva, under Her Master's orders, in light of the night's events in an effort to create a more secure facility for Gotham's most dangerous criminals. In addition, 20 Blackgate Prisoners ended up escaping from Blackgate in large part because of the Joker's earlier riot. Six days later on New Years Eve, The Penguin ended up arrested at GothCorp alongside Ferris Boyle and Mr. Freeze, with Penguin specifically sent to Blackgate for incarceration.
Three months, and two weeks after Catwoman ended up incarcerated at Blackgate Prison for an attempted burglary, an explosion occurred at Blackgate. That resulted in several of the criminals, from the minor prisoners to "the worst of the worst," who took over the prison in a riot and held the personnel hostage. The Joker, Black Mask, and Penguin (the last of whom was implied to have deliberately stay imprisoned at Blackgate so that he could run his criminal empire in relative safety from Batman) ended up taking control of the Administration Wing, the Industrial Wing, and the Cell Blocks, respectively.
The Joker proceeded to rig the building with explosives as well as a modified riot control gas to ensure his control over the building, as well as massacred several guards, used their corpses as decorations, and vandalized the building with graffiti. Joker then made the place a residential home for himself, captured Warden Joseph and wired him to several explosives after he ambushed him in his office via an emergency hatch that lead to the Sewer. In addition, the Penguin decided to use the riot as an excuse to solidify his power base and gain recruits, and also orchestrated fights among the guards with his "champion," Bronze Tiger, whom he forced into becoming his champion after the latter had refused to join him.
He also attempted to retrieve weapons from the Harbor. Black Mask wanted to get rid of his rivals, especially the Joker whom he hated due to his earlier actions in destroying his criminal empire, forced an engineer to sabotage the prison facility's power generators into overloading with the hopes that it wiped out the opposition, and, assuming that he managed to escape from the prison in time, left him the sole dominant criminal kingpin. Batman was notified of the riot by Captain Gordon, infiltrated the prison facility to quell the riot by scaling the wall from the riverside, and was fully aware that most if not all of the prisoners were thirsting for his blood as revenge for his role in imprisoning them.
After Batman encountered Catwoman, he was forced into an uneasy alliance with her after she told him that the hostages were locked up in the Arkham Wing, and that he needed to take out the three kingpins to gain access to the Arkham Wing. The three, however, fully anticipated Batman's arrival, ordered Deadshot to kill him, and offered him a bounty. Deadshot accepted, although he kept it a secret from each of them that he had accepted all three contracted bounties. Batman managed to defeat Black Mask and Joker at their respective locations, although the Penguin had managed to escape from the Cell Blocks, which resulted in Batman encountering him at the Docks while he retrieved the arsenal.
After Batman took out all three, he accessed the central sanctum of the Arkham Wing, only to discover Bane inside, who was drained of most of his TN-1 and was left frail. Batman deduced that Catwoman's true objective had been to break out Bane, which she confirmed, and explained that an anonymous individual had contracted her with retrieving Bane. Catwoman also told Batman that she struck a deal with one of the three kingpins to lace the building and personnel with explosives, knew full well that Batman could not risk letting the bombs go off just to ensure that she remained in the prison, and thus, buy her time to ensure both her and Bane's escape.
However, because of Bane's diminished status, Catwoman could not get far before Batman caught up with her. Catwoman then fought him, and even temporarily blinded him, although she was defeated. Captain Rick Flag Jr. then took Catwoman back into custody, although not before she relayed that she had been "given an offer [she] couldn't refuse" when she explained her motive. Bane was placed back into custody, with Flagg officially stated that he had retrieved him before he could escape, although in reality he was forced to give him back to Blackgate to save face in the event that his and Director Amanda Waller's operation ended up exposed, with Bronze Tiger and Deadshot were recruited into the Suicide Squad.
Blackgate was not visited during the events of Batman: Arkham Asylum, although it was mentioned that Dr. Young had arranged for Bane to be smuggled over to Arkham Asylum to conduct research on Titan under the advice of "Jack White" (an alias of the Joker as part of one of his grand schemes). In addition, a lot of prisoners from Blackgate, including most of Joker's Henchmen, were placed in temporary transfer to Arkham Asylum due to a mysterious fire that broke out at the location (the fire was strongly implied to have been orchestrated by the corrupt Arkham Guard, Frank Boles under the orders of the Joker). Shortly thereafter, the Joker instigated a riot at the asylum, with Batman, who had just delivered him back to the asylum, was forced to contend with the escaped inmates at the asylum while he stopped Joker.
As with Arkham Asylum, Blackgate did not actually make an appearance in Batman: Arkham City, although it was mentioned. It was rumored by several of the prisoners that, with the creation of Arkham City, Blackgate Prison was converted into a shopping mall, although those development plans were delayed after Arkham City was exposed to be an illegal operation, with all of the inmates who were transferred back to Blackgate as a result of Arkham City's shut down.
Blackgate was confirmed via advertisements throughout Gotham to have been converted into a shopping mall.
- Cell Block A
Cell Block A was located within the Cell Blocks Wing of Blackgate, in Blackgate West. Its entry point was marked with a "Blackgate West" sign above the door, and had steps and a hallway that lead down to the section. It was here that the Joker (disguised as Black Mask) broke into the prison on Christmas Eve and conducted his first Code 10 Break In. He, alongside several False Facers and Killer Croc, caused a huge amount of destruction to the entry area. Because of that, Batman had managed to deduce where Black Mask (as he believed him to be) had entered. After he traversed through the damaged access point, Batman saved Warden Joseph from being silenced by one of Black Mask's False Facers to eliminate any loose ends.
The actual Cell Block A section had five floors, one of which was below the access area. Each floor was littered with prison cells. There was also a row of cells in the room beyond. Batman traversed through that section while he tried to locate Black Mask, or rather, one of his men to interrogate them as to where he was headed. Beyond that room was the Holding Cells for Cell Block A, which featured several hallways and several prison cells. There were also gates that were closed down to prevent any escape attempts. Batman encountered a drone that was manned by the Penguin while he traversed through the area, and also defeated several prisoners who escaped their cells at the wrong moment. Because of the closed gates, Batman was forced to use his Grapnel Gun to bypass the gate between him and continue to the Execution Chamber.
The Nexus was the central area between the various Cell Blocks. It was three stories as well as possessed several hallways that were lined with cells. The second floor of the area that lead out of Cell Block A led to Prisoner Processing while the first floor of the same area led to Cell Block C. In the center of the Nexus was an Administrative Room. It also had an access area to what ultimately led to the Panopticon area as well as to the Prison Maintenance area in the Sewer. Killer Croc, as a message to Batman, bit into a guard and then threw him down to the ground while another guard was being intimidated by one of Black Mask's False Facers. Batman managed to knock out Black Mask's Henchman and accessed the Prisoner Processing area. In the second riot, several personnel, including intern Harleen Quinzel, were held hostage by the escaped prisoners, which strongly implied that she was the one who was responsible for the Joker's riot due to being seduced into supplying the Joker with the security codes. Batman managed to knock out the prisoners and saved the personnel, with Quinzel, partially due to Batman saving her and due to the Joker expecting Batman to confront him, and told him that Joker was holed up at the Panopticon area and that he waited for him.
- Prisoner Processing
Prisoner Processing was the area where prisoners were transferred to the various Cell Blocks. It included two check-in areas, one for visitors and one for checking in prisoners, as well as a temporary holding cell. It also had an elevator that led to another section of Cell Block A. During Black Mask's Code 10 Break In, the news crew were imprisoned by both Black Mask's Henchmen and several escaped prisoners in the holding cell, although Batman managed to knock the prisoners out. The news crew were undecided about whether Batman was friend or foe. Batman used his Explosive Gel to blow up a weak foundation on the elevator floor to access Death Row.
- Death Row
Death Row was the area that was used for holding several prisoners who were sentenced for execution, and was accessible via elevator from Prisoner Processing. It possessed several rows of cells, with it having a letter for each floor (A for the first floor and B for the second floor, etc.) with the cell number next to it, and an Observation Deck with a glass window. As it was Death Row, it had a gate that lead to a door, which led directly to the Execution Chamber. Calendar Man was imprisoned in that section. In addition, during Black Mask's Code 10 Break In, after he released several prisoners (save for Calendar Man, who was already on his way to being executed by that time), Black Mask and Croc managed to murder several guards as well as humiliate Commissioner Loeb, while he ranted that the Commissioner, despite being on his payroll, had repaid him by sending "several of his men to the slammer." Batman briefly witnessed that and also knocked out the prisoners who planned to either go out for a drink or otherwise clear the area of guards to repay Black Mask for helping them escape. One of Black Mask's Henchmen sealed himself behind the gate to the Execution Chamber under the belief that the Dark Knight couldn't access it, but Batman proved him wrong and detonated the weak wall near him. Later that night, when the Joker orchestrated his second Code 10 Break In (having done his first while disguised as Black Mask), Warden Joseph ended up shot by a sniper in that area, which forced Batman and Captain Gordon to protect the wounded Warden long enough for a medical chopper to arrive at the premises to extract him. Batman also ended up ambushed by Croc, although the latter ended up grazed by a misdirected sniper round from the same sniper who wounded Joseph.
- Execution Chamber
The Execution Chamber was the place where condemned criminals received execution. The Execution Chamber access had a crossroad of four paths, one that led to Death Row, one that led to the Medical Ward, one that led to the Execution Chamber proper, and one that led to the Prison Chapel. The Execution Chamber itself was a gas chamber, and it was used to gas the prisoners to death. It had a glass wall to protect the personnel who observed the execution from the poisonous fumes.
During the first break in, Black Mask (or rather, the Joker) brought Commissioner Loeb to the Execution Chamber, and killed him in there under the pretense that he no longer served his interests, much to Loeb's protests. Batman paid a visit to that location to save Loeb, but arrived too late. Batman later returned to that area again, to prevent the Joker from escaping, and narrowed down his location to the Prison Chapel.
- Medical Ward
The Medical Ward contained a stretcher and some medical equipment, and was accessible via the Execution Chamber Access. Batman briefly visited that location to access the ducts to directly access the Execution Chamber in a failed attempt at saving the corrupt Commissioner Loeb from execution at the hands of Black Mask.
- Security Corridor
The Security Corridor was a hallway that led to the Execution Chamber, and presumably to the Execution Chamber Access. It led to a place with restricted access point that led to a heliport. Batman, after he escaped from the Execution Chamber, pursued Black Mask through that area.
- Watch Tower
One of several Watch Towers at Blackgate West. It contained various fuel containers and overlooked the cliff to the sea. During the first riot, Batman confronted Killer Croc, who deliberately stayed behind while Black Mask and most of his henchmen escaped via chopper to fight and kill him. Batman then defeated Croc and escaped capture by the GCPD led by Captain Gordon, although not before he left Croc for capture and learned that seven assassins other than Croc had been hired by Black Mask to kill him.
- Cell Block B
Cell Block B was located within the Cell Blocks Wing of Blackgate. It led to the Panopticon, and was lined with various floors of cells. It had a hallway and stairs that lead up to it, as well as a checkin/waiting area. The block itself had some prison cells on at least two floors. Deathstroke was imprisoned here after he was defeated by Batman and was arrested by the GCPD. However, Deathstroke did not participate in the second Blackgate Riot, as he was sour with the Joker for "wasting his time." Batman accessed that prison block to access the Panopticon due to the Joker holing himself up at that location, and also defeated several escaped prisoners, some of whom fought themselves in a blood frenzy.
The Panopticon was located beyond Cell Block B of the Cell Block Wing, within the south wing of the area. Its access point was littered with prison cells at least three stories up. In addition, the Panopticon itself had a lowerable platform that contained a generator for the Electric Chair. It was also directly above the Maximum Security Ward. During the Joker's second riot at Blackgate Prison, he took Warden Joseph hostage, holed himself up in the Panopticon area, and anticipated Batman's arrival. Joker then forced Batman to fight Bane to the death upon his arrival. Captain Gordon and some GCPD officers arrived there to quell the situation, although Gordon ended up being taken hostage by the psychopathic clown after he hooked himself up to the electric chair, which raised the stakes for Batman. After Batman faked Bane's death and resuscitated him, he blew up the floor after Bane injected himself with TN-1.
- Maximum Security Ward
The Maximum Security Ward was a location within the Cell Block Wing, and was located below the Panopticon. It contained several cells and pacification devices. Adjacent to it was the Control Room. After Bane injected himself with TN-1, Batman detonated the floor beneath them, fought the engorged Bane in the area, and knocked him into several power pylons in order to subdue him. However, Batman ended up knocked through a wall by Bane.
- Control Room
The Control Room was an area adjacent to Death Row. It had several security monitors. Batman accessed that area after he defeated Bane for good.
- Prison Chapel
The Prison Chapel was a place of worship for the various prisoners. It contained several pews, an altar, and several stained-glass windows. During the Joker's second riot, Joker attempted to escape via the Prison Chapel, and collapsed in front of the altar exhausted, but was very amused by the violent events of the night. Batman, tracked down his location from Joseph and Gordon, confronted the Joker in the chapel, fought and subdued him, and narrowly resisted his temptations to kill him right then and there.
- Cell Block C
Cell Block C was one of the Cell Blocks in the Cell Blocks Wing. It was adjacent to Cell Block B and the Exercise Yard. After he received a tip from Catwoman, Batman proceeded to access Cell Block C to access the Exercise Yard to find Penguin.
- Exercise Yard
The Exercise Yard was where the prisoners were placed to do routine exercises in the area. A Watch Tower was situated nearby. During the Third Blackgate Riot, the Penguin transformed the Exercise Yard into his own personal gladiatorial ring, where he had his "champion," Bronze Tiger, fight several prisoners and eventually Batman to the death. Batman, based on a tip from the inmate Catwoman, located Penguin there and was forced into a deathmatch with Bronze Tiger.