Batman: Arkham City Catwoman DLC Review

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Extra Arkham City action is far from purr-fect

Taking the form of a single player scenario rather than the various combat and predator challenges available for purchase in Arkham Asylum, Arkham City’s first piece of downloadable content fits perfectly into Rocksteady’s second instalment of their Batman games. Although there may be a huge contrast when playing as Batman for long periods only to then be thrust into the high-heeled boots of Catwoman, it flows very well within the context of events.

Begin a new game and you assume the role of Catwoman in the first of four parts of her scenario that are interspersed throughout the Bat’s main adventure. When you start your journey through Hugo Strange’s super-prison as the Dark Knight your first task is to rescue Selina Kyle from Two-Face’s clutches and with the DLC plugged in you get an insight into Catwoman’s dealings with Dr Strange and Harvey Dent.

It’s easy to assume that these intrude on the action at the most misopportune moments but you’d be wrong. The pacing of Arkham City lends itself perfectly to Ms Kyle’s misdemeanours.

As expected, not being able to glide when leaping off buildings is sorely missed

Although there’s a seamless integration of Catwoman’s antics there is a very different feel to the two characters when you change hands. Gone are the Bat’s countless gadgets that you will have grown accustomed to, and reliant on, and in comes a stripped back character that feels like Bruce Wayne entering Arkham Asylum for the first time.

Despite the lack of access to gadgets and abilities her male counterpart has, Catwoman does possess skills that do well to individualise the character. Her ability to crawl on ceilings makes sneaking around that little bit easier and where Batman would use the grappling hook to scale buildings Catwoman uses her whip to pull herself up in steps. Although somewhat tedious it never feels out of place. As expected, not being able to glide when leaping off buildings is sorely missed.

As if Rocksteady couldn’t squeeze enough villainous appearances into the main game the DLC features two more battles against Arkham City’s more sinister residents, culminating in a final confrontation with Two-Face, which rounds off a satisfying, if somewhat short experience.

Once you’ve completed the main game you’re free to switch between the two characters at certain points on the map but apart from new riddles to solve, courtesy of Mr Enigma, there is no real compelling reason to return to the character.

It is a shame that the time spent with Catwoman is so short but any longer could have easily felt like you’re detracting away from the real star of the Arkham City show. Although its length is a plus and her story is handled very well, the transition from the Batman to feline fatale feels like a huge step down.