Batman '89
Image: Warner Bros

In 1993, Konami released Batman Returns for the Super Nintendo, a licensed tie-in that was so well regarded that it recently ended up on our Best Beat 'Em Ups Of All Time list.

However, as the former Konami artist and designer Masaaki Kukino told us in an interview published today, this wasn't the company's first-ever attempt at making a game based on one of Tim Burton's Batman films. As they revealed, four years prior, they were keen to license the arcade rights to the 1989 film, but ultimately things didn't line up.

As Masaaki Kukino told Time Extension:

"...I was at one point planning to license Tim Burton's Batman for the Arcades. I couldn't do it though because other companies got in the way."

The other company he mentions in this scenario is almost definitely Atari Games, which released its own beat 'em up based on Burton's film in 1990. That game is a faithful yet often overlooked recreation of the original film, featuring action-packed batmobile segments and digitized renditions of Danny Elfman's now iconic score.

Given the quality of Konami's licensed arcade games at the time, which included the likes of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, it's hard not to imagine, though, what would have been if the Japanese developer was able to go through with its plans in its place.

You can read the rest of the interview here.