When the Batgirl: A Matter of Family expansion was first announced for Batman: Arkham Knight, I was ecstatic. Getting to play as Barbara Gordon? How awesome will that be?! Now that I’ve played the story expansion for myself, let me tell you just how awesome (or lackluster) it actually is.

You might be thinking, “Why is there a DLC like this already? Wasn’t this game just released?” Yes, yes it was. However, Rocksteady was not behind this. Instead, WB Montreal – the developer from Batman: Arkham Origins – was the team creating this content.

Batgirl: A Matter of Family does not take place in the wide open Gotham City like the main game does. Instead, the game world is a small theme park that has been built on an old oil rig. The area of the map is not big at all. In fact, it’s incredibly small. However, the oil rig reminded me a bit of Arkham Asylum in how it was set up and how you went about your business (on a much smaller scale, of course).

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The premise of the story is that Joker and Harley Quinn have kidnapped James Gordon (Barbara’s father, for those that don’t know) and a handful of other cops and are holding them hostage at the theme park. On top of that, Joker claims that he will kill Gordon if Batman shows up whatsoever. This is when Batgirl and Robin take matters into their own hands. If you’re wondering how this is possible since Babs is partially paralyzed, it’s because this story takes place before Batman: Arkham Asylum.

The beginning of the game is very linear as you’re tasked with taking out Joker’s men while you and Robin make your way onto the rig and into the open area. Some of these opening fighting sequences utilize the same character-switching mechanic that was present in the main game with Batman/Robin, Batman/Nightwing and Batman/Catwoman (which I thought was a fantastic new game mechanic in the Arkham Knight).

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Once you get past this open part, you start to realize just how short the DLC is going to be. You’re tasked with rescuing three groups of cops that are being held by Joker’s men. These area’s are much like the missions in the main game where you need to clear the area of the enemies. It’s pretty straight forward, you just need to have your sneaky shoes on. There are no side missions for this DLC, the only other thing that you can do is find all of the collectibles which include balloons, Joker teeth, and Harley’s Jack in the Boxes.

Once you rescue the cops from their captors, it’s time to face off against the Clown Prince of Crime himself and Harley Quinn – who is dressed up in her amazingly awesome original costume from Batman: The Animated Series. The final fight is pretty straight forward. Batgirl and Robin have to take out Joker, Harley, and a group of their thugs. Once you deal a certain amount of damage to Joker, it will send you into a QTE, and you will get this QTE a few times before the finale of the battle. Seeing Joker and Harley working together again, in the flesh, is great, but the final boss battle left a bit to be desired. It wasn’t difficult, and if you’ve battled Joker throughout the Arkham series, it just isn’t quite on par with other fights.

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Now let’s talk about Batgirl’s fighting style. This was one of the highlights of the DLC. Obviously she doesn’t have the brute force that Bruce Wayne has, so she has to go about her fights with a different strategy in mind, and the DLC does a great job of showcasing that. Batgirl is able to use her hacking skills to distract and disrupt enemies before she goes in for the hand-to-hand combat. As I mentioned, not only does this give us a different fight style for a character that should have one different from Batman, but it also utilizes her great computer skills that we’ve gotten so used to seeing her use as Oracle.

Unfortunately, there just isn’t enough content in Batgirl: A Matter of Family for it to be relevant. It takes maybe an hour tops to finish off the story, and that was with me taking my sweet time being incredibly stealthy. The story is pretty non-existent, which is really disappointing considering we’re playing with someone we haven’t been able to control before as well as getting Joker, Harley, and James Gordon. The game’s world also isn’t anything spectacular either. It’s incredibly small and there’s not much to explore. With how small the map is, it’s certainly not surprising, but it’s still disappointing that we don’t have any side missions either. Batgirl’s fighting style is a solid change from Batman’s style, but this plus isn’t enough to make up for the rest of the downfalls. Batgirl deserved a quality expansion and a decent little story, and that’s not what we received. Unfortunately, this first piece of content for the $40 season pass is another black mark for Warner Bros.’ while they are still scrambling to fix the utter disaster that is the PC version of Batman: Arkham Knight that was handled by Iron Galaxies Studios.

Batman: Arkham Knight - Batgirl: A Matter of Family DLC Review
Batgirl: A Matter of Family's lack of content and disappointing length is just too much for Barbara Gordon to overcome.
The Good
  • Batgirl's fighting style
  • More of Mark Hamill's Joker!
The Bad
  • Very short
  • Incredibly small map
  • Lack of content and story
6Overall Score
Reader Rating: (0 Votes)

About The Author

Kyle K
Staff Writer

Kyle has been a gamer for most of his life. He's a public relations graduate and a well-rounded console and PC gamer who will play just about anything. Also, he secretly wishes he was Nathan Drake.