With the Harley Quinn’s Revenge DLC, gamers have another chance to go back to Arkham City. The question is, is it worth the trip? Warning: there will be SPOILERS for the ending of Batman: Arkham City.
Two weeks after the events last year’s insanely successful game, Harley Quinn has escaped back into the now-closed Arkham City. Distraught by the Joker’s death, Harley has gone even crazier, holing herself up in the Industrial district that used to be Joker’s territory and taking cops hostage. Batman went in to rescue the hostages, but has been missing for two days. Robin takes it upon himself to infiltrate Harley’s new base and find his mentor.
Harley Quinn’s Revenge is a really good idea, and the kind of DLC they should make for story-driven games. After the ending of the original story, the question of the aftermath of all the deaths that occurred deserves to be answered. It’s intriguing to find out that both Joker and Talia’s deaths have had such an effect on Batman that both Robin and Oracle are worried about his state of mind. And of course, seeing Harley go even crazier, decked out in her new widow look and dressing all her thugs in her colors just adds to the crazy cake. At one point, she even breaks down crying thinking about what Joker would have done to the hostages in her place. It’s also interesting listening in on the thugs as they discuss Joker’s death, and argue over whether Batman killed him or not.
Gameplay-wise, it’s the same as the game I gave a perfect score to last year. As Robin, you have access to a new way to approach problems using his unique gadgets, and combat and stealth is still so satisfying. You play through as Robin, exploring the new location of the Dry Dock, then it flashes back to Batman and how he originally explores the Industrial District to find Harley’s new base, then back to Robin and then Batman again. All the things you remember in gameplay from the main story are here: stealth, combat, taking on massive rooms with armed thugs and then dealing with interrogating and detective work. It’s all still here.
You can sense a “but” coming, can’t you? The biggest problem here is that it’s so damn short. I beat the whole thing in two hours. Considering how engaging the main game was, that’s just not fair. It’s like getting a big bowl of ice cream and it’s already gone in a few bites. The other problem I had is a story problem with Harley’s master plan. It’s just… not much of a plan. I get that she’s broken up over Joker, but this was the moment for her to become a much bigger threat. The final complaint is a minor one, but I would have loved to take Robin for a spin around Arkham City. I know his gliding isn’t as good as Batman’s but still, a chance to go exploring the massive world with a new character was lost here.
Harley Quinn’s Revenge does raise the bar on DLC and what it can give us, and raises some interesting questions for what will happen when they (more than likely) make a sequel. It’s just a very short ride. Still, it is better than some of the other DLC that can be released for a game these days.
|Still the same great gameplay from one of the best games ever made, and a chance to see the aftermath of its story, plus the chance to take Robin for a spin in a plot.||Way too short, and a few missed opportunities.|