Harley Quinn's Revenge Impressions

by Andrew Reiner on May 29, 2012 at 07:04 AM

It's a dark day for Harley Quinn. With a veil covering her face and black tear-stained eyeliner streaking down her checks, Harley is in no mood for visitors. Batman picked the wrong day to knock down her door. After entering her lair, he hasn't been seen for days. If you haven't played Arkham City, be warned that these impressions contain spoilers.

This single-player DLC begins with the love of Harley's life gone. We also see follow-up on the pregnancy test Easter egg from the end of Arkham City. The DLC picks up right where the base game left off, giving players a look at the deconstruction of the asylum and a hint as to where the next game in the series might be heading. With Batman missing, gameplay shifts to his trusted ward, Robin. Let out a groan if you must. Rocksteady Studios' version of Robin (Tim Drake) is mature, confident, and unlike many versions of him seen in comic books, movies, and television shows, is a more colorful version of Batman. His master has trained him well, and he ends up being a fun character to control in the story-based missions. Although his move set is the same featured in his challenge stages, we get to see how it applies to obstacles and puzzles. His shield can block turret fire, and his explosives are used in interesting ways. He isn't as powerful as Batman, but his bo staff always lands a satisfying smack (or 20) on enemies.

Just when it seems like this is Robin's story, the game transitions to two days earlier to show how Batman went missing. Control is handed back to the Caped Crusader, and as the plot progresses, shifts back and forth between the two characters. Batman relies on all of his old tricks and tools, yet this DLC's combat encounters don't feel like repeats from the main campaign. The enemy formations are slightly different, and a new enemy type is introduced toward the end of this short story.

Both characters are tied to great gameplay sequences, and Harley Quinn is as crazy as ever. The episode also hints at Batman maybe not being himself after the death of Joker.

The DLC is available now for $10 (or packed in with Arkham City Game of the Year Edition). I thoroughly enjoyed revisiting the city, but the story and action in this DLC doesn't reach the same heights as Arkham City. Even so, I walked away from Harley Quinn's Revenge with exciting theories about what may be coming next for the series.