|Full Name||Howard Branden|
|Occupation||GCPD SWAT Lieutenant|
|Base of Operations||GCPD, Gotham City|
|Affiliations||Gillian B. Loeb|
|Height||6ft 3in (1.91m)|
|Voice Actor||Chris Fries|
|First Appearance||Batman #405 (March 1987)|
SWAT Officer Lieutenant Howard Branden represents the corruption and brutality found within the GCPD. He was on the take from nearly every major criminal syndicate in town and preyed on the weak by extorting money through intimidation. He was Loeb's protege, but with Loeb gone, Branden was looking to secure his promotion through other means. He was not in the running for Commissioner, but he was certain to make sure the next one maintained the arrangements that Loeb had established.
Howard Branden served as the leader of the GCPD SWAT division under Commissioner Gillian B. Loeb during Batman's early years. Branden was notable for his corrupt and excessively violent approach to law enforcement.
Before Arkham Origins Incident
Arkham Origins Incident
On Christmas Eve, Branden worked under Commissioner Loeb and tried to hunt down the masked vigilante known as Batman. Branden, like many members of the GCPD, wanted to kill Batman instead of capturing him, so that he could bring his corpse to the criminal, Black Mask for the fifty million dollar bounty reward. When Branden and his team discovered that Batman was at the GCPD, he made his way upstairs with two of his team to kill Batman, but Captain James Gordon ordered him and the others to hold their fire. Batman then dropped his Smoke Bomb, and was able to subdue Branden and the two men who accompanied him, and escaped the GCPD. Branden and his team then arrived at the Royal Hotel to kill Batman, but he was able to escape in the Batwing, and left the SWAT team to arrest the Joker. At the Gotham Pioneer's Bridge, Branden and the other officers were taken hostage by Firefly and his men. As Batman arrived, Branden told him to untie him. Batman did so, and stated that Branden had been trying to kill him all throughout the night. Branden attempted to punch Batman, but was knocked unconscious and Batman told him that he was giving him the rest of the night off.
Cold, Cold Heart Incident
In the Cryptographic Sequencer, the radio broadcast announced that Branden was suspended from the GCPD SWAT Division when it was revealed that he had his SWAT members hunt down Batman on Christmas Eve.
Arkham Origins Blackgate Incident
After Joker's defeat on Christmas Eve, Branden lost his job as a cop.
Branden was everything wrong with the GCPD. He was corrupt, violent, greedy, and acted more as a criminal than a cop. Branden was not above using the law to his own advantage, which showed when he used the vigilante task force to kill Batman, while all he wanted, was the fifty million bounty on his head. He is also unfaithful to his wife as he cheats on her with another women in My Alibi.
Real Name: Howard Branden
Batman's Database Profile
Branden represents everything that's wrong with the GCPD. He is on the take from nearly every major criminal syndicate in town and preys on the weak by extorting through intimidation. He served as the leader of the SWAT division under Commissioner Loeb, but with Loeb gone, he will be looking to secure his promotion through other means. Branden is not in the running for Commissioner, but he will be certain to make sure the next one maintains the arrangements Loeb established.
- "This 'bat-guy' has some of my men really spooked. Some of 'em are even calling in sick." (Loeb)
- "So, what should I do about it?" (Loeb)
- "Run that past me again?" (Loeb)
- "Like a private contractor?" (Loeb)
- "Ok. Why?" (Loeb)
- "And how am I supposed to know the guy?" (Loeb)
- "What is that? French?" (Loeb)
- "Alright. 'Facade'. Got it." (Loeb)
- "You sure those cameras are off?" (Cop)
- "Alright, but keep it under your hat. Loeb's planning on setting up a special unit. With me as leader, of course." (Cop)
- "We're not stealing, we're borrowing. That way, we don't need to deal with a lotta red tape when we gotta mobilize." (Cop)
- "Nah, we got that covered, believe me. Hey, if you wanna see some action, I could put in a good word." (Cop)
- "Suit yourself, But, remember, if you're not with us, keep your damn mouth shut!" (Cop)
- "Alright-listen up."
- "While you jokers where playing clean up crew at Blackgate, I was making us some money."
- "I worked out a deal with our pal Black Mask. If any of us can kill the Bat before the assassins get to him, we get the bounty - all fifty million dollars of it."
- "For those of you who ain't too good with the math, that means we all retire early."
- "Enough. We only get one night to get this done. So whatever they put you on tonight - I want you to blow it off. Finding and killing the Bat is your number one priority. That clear?"
- "Questions? Shout 'em out."
- "Well for starters, you're gonna keep your damn trap shut. Anyone else?"
- "Look. Y'all put your lives at risk when you signed up for SWAT. Now you want to make the big money, you're going to have to accept bigger risk. That's how it works. Anyone wants out can hand me their badge. Didn't think so. We good to go?"
- "He's good for the cash, trust me. And I know where he's stashing it." (Black Mask)
- "'Cause the last thing we need is a war with Black Mask and his men. Come on guys, let's do this."
- "Bat's on the run and headed this way. Let's secure this room. Fan out!"
- "Remember: shoot to kill-and when Gordon asks, the Bat shot first."
- "Of course he's got a gun! And if he ain't got one, then you know what to do. It's not like you haven't done it before." (Batman)
- "There he is!" (Batman)
- "Stop him!" (Batman)
- "Son of a bitch! To the roof!"
- "Gordon! Clear the line of fire!"
- "Move Gordon. I'm taking him down-" (Aims assault rifle at Batman)
- "Excellent. What about Gordon?"
- "Alright. You men be ready to move when I arrive."
- "6-2, Branden. Has Black Mask responded yet?"
- "Son of a bitch Sionis thinks he can ignore us? What about Gordon?"
- "Dammit. I'm almost there."
- "Branden to 6-4. I'm on site at the Royal. Anyone have eyes on the Bat?"
- "Good. When they come down, we'll be ready for 'em. Get in position." (Batman and "Black Mask")
- "DON'T MOVE, FREAK!" (Batman and Joker)
- "TAKE HIM DOWN! NOW!" (Batman)
- "Give the damn order, Gordon!"
- "Branden to Gordon. We're in place, awaiting your orders."
- "No! Take him down!" (Firefly)
- "Let me go while you still got a chance." (Firefly's henchmen)
- "You idiots ain't gonna live long enough to get paid. Firefly's got a remote detonator. He doesn't need you to set any timers. He's gonna blow the bombs with you on the bridge-with all of us on the bridge." (Firefly's henchmen)
- "Didn't you hear that bomb just go off?" (Firefly's henchmen)
- "You sure about that?" (Firefly's henchmen)
- "Well look who it is...." (Batman)
- "You just gonna stand there? Untie me." (Batman)
- "Come on! Untie me, you freak!" (Batman)
- "Untie me, you self-righteous son of a bitch! (Batman)
- "I heard. But I still got a score to settle with you!" (Tries to punch Batman after being untied)
Challenge Map Introduction
- "Listen up people! I want this Bat bastard take down ASAP. There's a big payday in it for us, so don't screw it up!"
- "There's 50 million bucks riding on this. So I don't wanna hear any excuses. Bag the Bat and let's get paid!"
- "Alright, fellas. The Bat's in the building. You scour that room or all your asses are bumped down to traffic."
- "The suspect's in your vicinity, men, so look alive. Pull this off and we all get to retire someplace nice and warm."
- "Batman's in the building-last seen heading towards your location. Be ready."
- "My file here says this Slade Wilson character is the highest paid mercenary in the world. How about I give a nickel to the one who retires him?" (Deathstroke)
- "And here, men, is a thief. He's come to rob us of 50 million big ones. Let's show him how we feel about that!" (Deathstroke)
- "Okay. Here's the deal. This motherlovin, piece-of-nothin mercenary is movin in on my territory. Bag'em and tag'em so I can forget'em!" (Deathstroke)
- "Look alive men. We've got this motherlovin merc trying to cut in on our action! Let's show'em what happens to those who screw with Gotham's finest." (Deathstroke)
- "MEN! This here assassin's movin in on my scene. How 'bout you teach him what happens when you screw with the law." (Deathstroke)
- "MEN! This thief is here to take what's ours. Do'em in, and make it seem legit..." (Deathstroke)
- "Listen up, men. Your orders are to take out Deathstroke and make it look legit. No loose ends."
- "So this motherlovin Deathstroke thinks he's gonna come to my city and rain on my parade! Put'em in a coffin!"
- "Look alive, men! Deathstroke is in your vicinity! Here to rob us of what is rightfully ours. Make'em disappear!"
- "The world's greatest assassin thinks he's gonna cheats us out of our money? Yeah, we'll show him how that works out." (Deathstroke)
- "Men, put a bullet in this assassin's head and make it look legit. We got paperwork to file." (Deathstroke)
- "Alright, men. Get me the assassin. Lethal force is authorized." (Deathstroke)
Progress of Henchmen
- "You three! Show this Wilson character what happens when you mess with Gotham's best!"
- "Ya kiddin' me? Three down? You should all be ashamed.
- "You two. Finish this!"
- "Stay sharp fellas. He's closing in on your location. Might already be there."
- "You see anything out of the ordinary-your orders are to shoot on site."
- "Remember: there's 50 million bucks riding on this, so no slacking!"
- "Come on fellas...I'm countin on you..."
- "Keep it together...keep it together..."
- "Keep it together fellas."
- "How long you can keep this up, Batman? You're out numbered and out gunned. It's over."
- "When I get a hold of you, Batman, you'll wish you let one of my guys put a bullet in your head."
- "You're through, Deathstroke. You hear me? Through."
- "You're through, assassin."(Deathstroke)
- "When my men get through with you, merc, you'll wish you stayed outta Gotham!" (Deathstroke)
- "How did you ever make it into the academy!?"
- "What the hell did they teach you in the academy? Get the merc!" (Deathstroke)
- "Last chance, merc! Get out of my city!" (Deathstroke)
- "You think you can come here and disgrace the law. You wait, you little nobody!" (Deathstroke)
- "Fellas! Don't let the mask scare ya. He's one man." (Deathstroke)
- "How can one man be givin you such a hard time!" (Deathstroke)
- "Find him!" (Deathstroke)
- "What the hell is going on down there?! You're supposed to be Gotham's finest. But here you are, getting your asses handed to you by some costumed freak!"
- "Listen up fellas-it's all on you now. Bring down the Bat so we can grab the bounty!"
- "I got a nice slab laid out for you in the morgue, Batman. You're gonna love it."
- "Disappointed don't even come CLOSE to how I feel right now."
- "I'm gonna teach you what happens when you mess with the law!" (Deathstroke)
- "You're gonna let this lowlife come in here and steal fifty mil? YA KIDDIN' ME!?" (Deathstroke)
- "Wake up, boys!"
Predator (KO'd Henchmen)
- "The Bat got someone! Didn't I tell you to watch your corners!?"
- "Sound off! The Bat just took one of you down!"
- "Report, dammit! Who got taken out!?"
- "Dammit! Stop letting him do that!"
- "Officer down! Stay on your toes!"
- "Hey ladies... stop daydreamin'."
- "Dammit! Watch your backs!"
- "What's goin' on down there?"
- "Officer down! Officer down!"
- "We've gotta man down!"
- "Girls! Wake up!"
- "You kiddin' me?"
- "Man down!"
- "Girls! Wilson's making a fool out of you. Get it together!"
- "How you plan to beat this guy twiddling your thumbs?"
- "Ya kiddin me."
Game Over Scenes
- "You should've turned yourself in when you had the chance. Alright boys! Get this trash outta here." (Batman)
- "Hm, not much to look at up close. Don't know why everyone was so afraid of him..." (Batman)
- "Looks like justice has finally been served, fellas. Now, to see what's under that mask....." (Batman)
- "They call this one Deathstroke, correction, huh they CALLED this one Deathstroke." (Deathstroke)
- "Your life ain't worth the dirt you lie on, Get this sorry excuse for an assassin outta here." (Deathstroke)
- In the GCPD, when the player entered the room where they had to use the Remote Claw to go over Branden talking to his division of SWAT about "Black Mask's" bounty, it was actually possible to defeat him and his entire SWAT team. However, once they were defeated, there would be no reward, just a massive amount of experience points. Also, it was also very hard to beat the entire team in New Game Plus, as the entire team would be both armed and armored. Basically, the only way to do that was to use the Quickfire Explosive Gel after reaching a x12 combo and then immediately performing a Multi-Ground Takedown, which instantly cleared out most of the room.
- In "I Am The Night", a very annoying glitch could happen, where the SWAT Team was onto you even before you used the Remote Claw, and forced you to restart all over again.
- Likewise, you could also take out Branden's entire SWAT Team again in the GCPD Server Room after Batman met Barbara Gordon for the first time. Even though they were all armed, it was much easier task given the layout of the room. The story-line didn't change and there was only a massive experience point for doing so.