Batman: Arkham City - Nightwing Bundle Pack Review

The Nightwing Bundle Pack lets you tackle Batman: Arkham City's Riddler's Revenge challenges with an enjoyable assortment of new gadgets and abilities.

Sometimes, heroes of the night get tired of spending hours searching the streets for bad guys to clobber and armed thugs to sneak up on. At times like these, it's nice to have the option to walk into a room and instantly be confronted by a dozen mean-looking dudes who want to destroy you. The Riddler's Revenge challenges in Batman: Arkham City give you the opportunity to jump right into a stealthy standoff or an all-out brawl, and the conditions for earning medals in the predator challenges encourage you to employ specific techniques to take down the bad guys. The new Nightwing Bundle Pack lets you face these challenges as Dick Grayson, and he has an enjoyable assortment of unique gadgets that make tackling stealthy situations as this former Boy Wonder distinctly different from doing so as Batman or Catwoman.

The Riddler's Revenge challenges are broken down into combat and predator situations. In the combat challenges, Nightwing plays quite similarly to Batman. He has his own set of animations that show him making smooth use of his two stun sticks, twirling them gracefully and hitting enemies with them in ways that might make you wince with pain. But aside from the useful ability to stun surrounding enemies with shock waves and bolts of electricity from his weapons of choice, he doesn't bring much to combat scenarios that sets him apart from the other playable characters. It's in the stealthy predator challenges that his unique abilities get a chance to shine.

Like Batman, Nightwing has the batclaw, which can yank guns from enemy hands or pull enemies over railings, incapacitating them. He also has the line launcher, the disruptor, and the batarang-like wing-dings. But his remaining tools are quite different from those available to Batman. As Nightwing, you can target enemies who are around corners with your escrima sticks, which automatically ricochet off of surfaces and hit their marks, knocking the poor saps to the ground temporarily. If enemies are standing close together, you can also use these sticks to target several and knock all of them down with one throw. You also have three wrist darts that can either stun an enemy or, if you land a headshot, knock him out completely. Nightwing's wrist doesn't stay perfectly still, which makes nailing the timing and landing a headshot on a distant thug a thrill. And he has an electrical blast that radiates out in all directions when you jump down, instantly stunning any enemies who get caught in its radius. This ability lets you safely take a more confrontational approach, rather than waiting for groups of enemies to split up.

Each predator map has three medal challenges, and these differ depending on the character you select, so you're encouraged to approach these differently as Nightwing than you might as Batman or Catwoman. For instance, the Triple Ricochet medal challenge requires you to knock down three henchmen at once with an escrima stick, and the Head Shot challenge is won by taking down an enemy with a well-aimed wrist dart. So there's an incentive to revisit the 12 predator maps included with the main game as Nightwing, and to visit the new predator map included with the Nightwing Bundle Pack as Batman and Catwoman.

Don't let the fact that he's a cartoon character fool you; Nightwing can bring the pain.

The layout of the new map, called Wayne Manor Main Hall, is standard, with plenty of vantage points and vents to crawl through; the most interesting thing about it is that it offers a glimpse of Batman's elegant home. The pack also includes one new combat challenge environment, the Wayne Manor Armory, and gives you a choice between two skins for Nightwing. The default skin makes the character look like a smug, cocky jerk, but the other is a delightful duplicate of his design from Batman: The Animated Series. It's humorous to see a cartoon version of the character occupying a world in which everyone else has a more realistic look.

If you own Batman: Arkham City but prefer confronting thugs within the context of the game's story to doing so in the Riddler's Revenge challenges, the Nightwing Bundle Pack (which costs $7.00) probably won't make these isolated challenges more enticing. However, if you do enjoy these scenarios, Dick Grayson's unique abilities and the different medal challenges that go along with them make suiting up as Nightwing a fresh and enjoyable new way to take out bad guys and stake a claim to the leaderboards.

The Good
Nightwing's gadgets and abilities change predator challenges significantly
Character-specific medal challenges give you a reason to change up your approach
The Bad
Nightwing doesn't bring much new to combat challenges
7
Good
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2 comments
captainwonton
captainwonton

no review of robin? or is it pretty much the same?

barren167
barren167

 @captainwonton So far as I can tell, 'tis roughly the same: A new character with an alternate costume (well, actually two I think) and a few new maps for challenge mode. Same idea, just different characters.

Batman: Arkham City More Info

  • First Released
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    Developed by Rocksteady Studios, Batman: Arkham City is an action adventure that builds upon the intense, atmospheric foundation of Batman: Arkham Asylum.
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    Developed by:
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