William North first appears in Rocksteady Game's Batman: Arkham Asylum in August 2009. He is a member of the security staff at Arkham Asylum, one of the many guards present during the Joker's takeover of the asylum.
Before Arkham Asylum Incident
Arkham Asylum Incident
Officer William North was among the many security personnel at Arkham Asylum, as the Joker was being recaptured by Batman. North was placed in charge of the lobby area in the Intensive Treatment Center. Before the Joker had arrived, North was tasked by Warden Quincy Sharp, Arkham's newest administrator, with double-checking all security, since he was a high-ranking senior guard at Arkham. He stationed every available guard in the Intensive Treatment Lobby to guard the Joker during his arrival. As Batman drove the handcuffed Joker back to the facility, North himself took an assault rifle and stood guard himself with his phalanx of armored colleagues, ready for anything in their lobby posts.
When the Joker was delivered to Arkham, he was placed under gunpoint by four guards as his security team, led by Frank Boles, strapped him into a handcart just inside the Intensive Treatment Center. They then wheeled the Joker into the Intensive Treatment Lobby, where he was awaited by William North and two of his men. Warden Sharp stood next to Officer North to view the Joker's progress, while Batman followed the villain's escort to make sure that there would be no trouble. As Batman entered the Intensive Treatment Lobby, he approached North and questioned him about the whereabouts of police Commissioner James Gordon, who was also there to supervise the Joker's return to custody: "Is Commissioner Gordon here yet?" North replied, "Yes, sir. He's...er..waiting for you down at Patient Handover. Got here just before you did." He then turned and followed the Joker's escort with Warden Sharp. As Batman hurried to catch up with the Joker and his security team, Sharp turned to North and said, "I want him securely locked away this time. Another escape and I will lose support for my mayoral campaign." William reassured him, replying, "Don't worry, warden. I have every available guard stationed here today, sir." Turning away from North, Sharp responded skeptically: "I hope it's enough, Officer North, for your sake. Joker is our most challenging patient. Curing him will cement my reputation. Inform Dr. Young that her patient is here." North then contacted Dr. Penelope Young, the Joker's personal therapist and the head of research at Arkham, directing her to come to the Intensive Treatment Lobby in the company of guard Maria Andrade to view her patient.
William North and Warden Sharp watched from a distance as Batman and the Joker proceeded on a service lift to a lower lobby area and then through an X-Ray Scanning tunnel, where the Clown Prince of Crime was screened for any possible weapons. Under the supervision of another officer, Aaron Cash, the Joker was then transferred safely to the Cell Block Transfer Corridor. With the Joker's transfer going well so far, William North remained in the lobby area with six of his fellow security guards. Two remained on the upper level, while North posted two more at the area around the Utility Corridor entrance and the X-Ray Tunnel. Two other armed guards patrolled the back of the area. North had no reason to believe anything could happen, while Warden Sharp left soon after, worried about double-checking security.
Meanwhile, the prisoner transfer did not go well with the Joker. At the Holding Cells, Frank Boles unstrapped the Joker from his handcart and turned him over to a new guard and a doctor. They claimed they were going to escort the evil clown to his padded cell, but refused to allow Batman or Commissioner Gordon to accompany them. While taking Joker through the Holding Cells, the villain overpowered them and made his escape. When Batman chased after him, the Joker released all the inmates housed in the Holding Cells to attack the Dark Knight. He then escaped through the depths of the Intensive Treatment facility, leaving murdered security guards in his wake. At the same time, the Joker's accomplice Harley Quinn unlocked all the cell doors throughout the building, releasing hundreds of prisoners. Soon, the liberated inmates had overrun the Decontamination Room, Secure Treatment Transfer, the Transfer Loop, and Patient Handover before the security guards could offer even minimal resistance. The prisoners spilled into the Transfer Loop, using the elevators and overwhelming the three lone guards patrolling the area. Once they gained access to the upper levels and picked up weapons belonging to downed guards, they were able to blast their way into the Cell Block Transfer Corridor and seize control. At the same time, Batman tried to follow them and halt the inmates before they could do any more damage, but he was ambushed by Harley Quinn, who disabled one of the elevators and sent it crashing to the ground floor. Knowing now that the elevator shaft was unsafe, Batman scaled the upper levels by weaving in and out of ventilation ducts and using his grappling gun to scale large heights. Although Harley Quinn's attack did little but slow him down, it was enough. The Intensive Treatment Lobby was the only part of the Intensive Treatment facility not already under the Joker's control, so it was naturally his next target. Although heavily-guarded by William North and his men, they were hopelessly outnumbered by the Joker's hordes of armed inmates on the rampage. An additional loss was the kidnapping of Commissioner Gordon by Frank Boles, secretly in the Joker's employ. After clubbing Gordon with a nightstick, the corrupted Boles dragged the commissioner to Secure Transit and regrouped with Harley Quinn as they decided on their next move.
Using Frank as bait, Harley and the Joker decided to send him into the Intensive Treatment Lobby to face William North alone. North had no reason to suspect Boles, since he was oblivious to the fact that Frank had changed sides. Boles thus rushed into the lobby, urging North and his men to go cover the front entrance of the Intensive Treatment Lobby, since the Joker had more inmates that were coming around the front of Intensive Treatment. As several security guards hurried to comply, one of North's colleagues asked how many inmates were present, before it downed on them that Frank could not have possibly known this information. In response, Boles raised an assault rifle and began shooting. He shot the guard nearest to him, then fired on the two guards scrambling for the exit. Surprised by Boles' sudden betrayal, many of the guards were easily targeted and shot dead. When all of the security personnel were either dead, had taken cover, or were injured, Boles shouted for Harley Quinn to join him. She and the remaining Blackgate prisoners finished off the remaining guards, who were overwhelmed despite putting up some resistance. The brief struggle left six guards and three inmates dead, but the Joker finally prevailed. Seeing how he was defeated, William North managed to survive by fleeing into the Utility Corridor to hide. Outgunned, outnumbered, and with no hope of backup, North had no choice but to take cover behind the Utility Room's reinforced door, which he shut. This allowed him to survive the massacre taking place outside. The troubled Officer North, however, knew what was happening. He could see it all on the security feed. After clearing the room of guards, the Joker's men stripped the dead security personnel of their weapons and ammunition, while Harley Quinn betrayed and executed Frank Boles on the Joker's orders.
William North, from the safety of the Utility Corridor, watched while three armed inmates continued patrolling the area outside in the lobby as Harley Quinn and the rest forced open the door to Arkham North and escaped to begin roaming free over the rest of Arkham Island. Although Harley and most of the inmates had left, North had no way of knowing exactly what sort of odds he was up against, and so he remained hidden. The Joker could see Batman liberating Cell Block Transfer on his security screens, so he broadcast a warning to his henchmen in the Intensive Treatment Lobby: "Joker here with a quick update on what's new in the asylum. Some idiot is running around the asylum dressed like a bat. I know, crazy! Personally, I think the best solution is to put him out of his misery. It's the only reliable cure."
After defeating two waves of the Joker's henchmen, Batman investigated the Intensive Treatment Lobby further and entered the upper level. Bullet-riddled bodies of inmates and security guards alike littered the floor, and scattered cartridges were strewn in every direction. He also found the corpse of Frank Boles, strapped into a patient handcart with a green smile painted over his face. Upon making this horrifying discovery, Batman was contacted by the Riddler, who had escaped Arkham and was hacking his communications system to give him a number of puzzles and clues to solve on Arkham Island. Meanwhile, William North waited in the Utility Corridor to see if any more inmates would arrive, then swung the heavy door open, calling for Batman: "Hey, Batman! I saw you clear the room!" He nodded at the Dark Knight and then gripped his rifle with both hands. Batman approached North, who reported, "It was a massacre. Boles came walking in telling everyone to cover the front entrance. Said something about Joker's army coming through the main gate! Two of my guys moved for the exit and Frank shot 'em dead. They never stood a chance." In response, Batman asked North, "Was Boles alone?" William replied, "Thought he was. Then I saw Harley Quinn. She was surrounded by Blackgate prisoners. they were just killing everyone in the room! I...I had no choice. I got in here. Locked the door. I could see it on the security feed. They had someone with them. It looked like the commissioner." Batman decided it was time to inform North of Frank Boles' demise: "Boles is dead. They carried on without him. Must've outlived his usefulness." North said with a lack of emotion in his voice, "Good! He was scum."
William North then turned away from Batman, walking to a dirty corner of the Utility Corridor, where a fallen colleague and friend lay crumpled at the end of a trail of blood, no doubt a victim of Boles' treachery. North turned to face the corpse, before kneeling next to it: "I'm sorry, buddy." He then made a solemn vow: "I'll look after Maria. I promise." Perhaps Officer North was referring to a spouse or child of the deceased guard, but, in either case, Batman left him to his mourning and escaped the Intensive Treatment Center shortly afterwards.
As for William North, he stood guard over his friend's body for a short while longer, then decided to risk going someplace else to accomplish some good or find a new area to wait out the Joker's takeover. He remained in the Intensive Treatment Center until some time later. After Poison Ivy overran Arkham Island with her mutated plants, she recruited many of the security staff to her cause. The monstrous plants smashed through the walls of the Intensive Treatment Lobby and detected William North. Instead of behaving aggressively, however, they released some of Poison Ivy's specialized toxins into the air, which affected North and allowed Ivy to control his mind. As an indirect result, North's eyes turned green and he maintained a blank expression. A number of mind-controlling spores repeatedly formed a cloud around his head to keep Ivy's control over him strong. When she was ready, Ivy gave orders to the zombified North to join Eddie Burlow and go to the plant-overrun Arkham East. Dropping his rifle, North complied instantly. Ivy's mental commands made him believe that he was following her orders because of some infatuation with her. She posted North and Burlow in the Flooded Corridor near her lair to guard the entrance to the Elizabeth Arkham Garden in the Botanical area. Some time later, Batman arrived to stop Poison Ivy from destroying the island. His footfalls on the newly-planted vegetation in the floor alerted her to his presence, and she dispatched her two zombified security guards to deal with him. Her mutated vines smashed through all barriers in Batman's way, allowing him to enter the Flooded Corridor without much problem. Ahead, the Dark Knight glimpsed a large vine blocking his view of the Flooded Corridor intersection, and Poison Ivy told him, "Come to me! Ivy's waiting." As the large vine shifted, it revealed Burlow and North standing perfectly still behind it. Batman approached them, and they turned around at the noise, prompting Ivy to remark, "I've got myself a little security, Batman. They'll just die if anything happens to me." This also caused North and Burlow to rush Batman with their fists, shouting, "And we love her." Batman's keen eyes were quick to notice the cloud of mind-controlling spores floating around William North's head which had infected him. Forced to battle hand-to-hand with the two men, Batman was understandably reluctant. However, he beat both security guards senseless on the floor and ended the fight as quickly and as painlessly as possible.
After invading the Elizabeth Arkham Garden and defeating Poison Ivy, Batman left for a final confrontation with the Joker. As for William North, he and Eddie Burlow regained consciousness a short period of time later. Sitting up and complaining of sore minor injuries, North appeared to have little memory of his time under Ivy's control. Clutching his aching head, North staggered to a nearby park bench, where he seated himself with his head in his hands. The exhausted and battered Burlow also recovered, quietly sitting down as well. Together, the two of them waited out the remainder of the Joker's takeover in the Botanical Gardens, with North returning to his regular duties after the Joker's final defeat at Batman's hands.
After Arkham Asylum Incident
North lost his job after the asylum was shut down due to the Arkham Asylum incident. He eventually joined a volunteer medical team into Arkham City in order to do some good.
Arkham City Incident
The Medical Team was ambushed by Harley Quinn and some of her goons at the Medical Center. When Batman arrived, North was taken hostage by one of the thugs, but was quickly saved by Batman.
After Arkham City Incident
- When the Joker's hordes of inmates overrun William North's position in the Intensive Treatment Lobby, the Joker plays a security audio recording of the incident over the Arkham intercom to Batman while in Secure Transit, allowing the players to piece together what exactly happened. The Joker opens up with a greeting to Batman: "Hey, Bats! I know you can hear me. I've got a little something for you to listen to. Harley [Quinn] and Frank [Boles] are nearly out of the building with [Commissioner Gordon]. How are they going to get past all those guards? Let's have a listen, shall we?" The dialogue for the recording is as follows:
- (Frank Boles enters the Intensive Treatment Lobby, noticed by William North and the other guards.)
- Security Guard #1: "Hey Frank! Where you been?"
- Frank Boles: "Joker's got more men on the way. They're coming around the front of the asylum. Gotta stop them from getting in. Quick, get over there!"
- Security Guard #1: "Dammit! C'mon, everyone! Cover the main entrance!"
- Security Guard #2: "How many are there, Boles? Wait, hang on, how do you know what..."
- (Frank Boles opens fire with his gun.)
- Security Guard #3: "Boles! Frank, what are you doing!? No! Put it down...!"
- (More gunfire.)
- Security Guard #4: "Frank, what the hell!?"
- (More gunfire until finally the room goes silent.)
- Frank Boles: "Quinn. It's clear. Get your ass in here."
- Harley Quinn: "You're some piece of work, Frankie. A girl could fall for someone like you."
- The Joker: "Stop flirting with the hired help, Harley."
- Harley Quinn: "Don't worry, sweetie. You know I only have eyes for you."
- The Joker: "Did you hear that, Bats? Sounds like Frankie is working out just fine. Another valuable employee for the organization."
- North appears on the Joker combat maps.
- For one of the riddles, his office has a picture of the advertisement of the Penguin's Iceberg Lounge.
- If you go back to the Transfer Loop near the killed guards outside Decontamination when following Frank Boles, a voice can be heard on two guard radios:
- Guard 27's radio: "Hello, can anyone hear me? Report in. Guard 27. Guard 27. Come in."Guard 32's radio: "Guard 32. Paul? Are you there?
- Dammit!"Both radios: "If anyone can hear this, we are at the Intensive Treatment Lobby. Blackgate Prisoners have broken free and are attacking the building. We are under assault by the front entrance. I repeat, we are under attack."
- It was likely that North tried to contact the other guards for assistance as he was the only survivor of Frank Boles' betrayal.