Review: Batman Arkham City Harley Quinn's Revenge
Batman: Arkham City was my personal pick for 2011's Game of the Year. For me it was, hands down, the most fun I've had with a videogame in a very long time. I found myself continually returning to the chaos that was Arkham City. When all was said and done I clocked in more than 30 hours. For a single player campaign that (thankfully) never hinted at including a multiplayer mode, it's safe to say that I got my money's worth. Every side mission completed, more than 400 of the Riddlers . . . um . . . riddles solved, and I still have reminders set up on my iPhone to visit the Calendar Man on specific days of each month to acquire the coveted Storyteller Trophy. Rocksteady provided me with a gaming experience that I will not soon forget.
Just when I thought I was done with the villains and thugs that crowd the streets of Arkham City, I receive news that the developers at Rocksteady aren't quite done with the Dark Knight's story. Harley Quinn's Revenge is set in what appears to be a few short weeks after the conclusion to the main story. Without revealing any spoilers, let's just say that she's less than thrilled with how things turned out for her beloved Joker. Like the saying goes, "A woman scorned . . . " Except in this case, Harley is more lunatic than woman, and that makes for a deadly combination.
Jumping into this - roughly 2 1/2 hour - downloadable content, you immediately assume the character of Robin, Batman's acrobatic sidekick. Batman has gone missing and all signs point to Harley Quinn. It's up to you, with the encouragement of Oracle, to find him. Players of either Arkham Asylum or Arkham City will feel comfortable with the gameplay mechanics as they mostly mimic those that made both Rocksteady games so much fun to play. Although not decked out with nearly as many gadgets as The Dark Knight, Robin certainly has enough tools available to him to get the job done. Aside from the standard grapple hook and cape gliding abilities, Robin puts to good use his Shuriken (an obvious replacement for the Batarang), a Snap-Flash detonator, and an impressive staff that can transform into a highly useful shield.
As the story progresses, and Robin has kicked a sufficient amount of ass, he stumbles upon Batman's utility belt. It's at this point that the story takes an interesting jump to 2 days earlier and we're back in the familiar boots of The Dark Knight. From here you'll see firsthand what happened to the Batman and how bad things have become. Fear not fans of Robin, you'll have plenty of opportunity later in the DLC to flap your wings again.
To say this add-on content packs a punch is an understatement. It is, in my opinion, what the basis for all future single player DLC should be based on. Although it doesn't address many of Batman's emotional issues that are alluded to it does leave me with an impression that Rocksteady isn't quite done with the amazing story of The Dark Knight. While Rocksteady has been very direct about not currently planning any new content for their Batman universe, it would be difficult not to think that they'll revisit these characters again at some point in the future.