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Warner Bros. apologizes for Batman: Arkham Knight's defective PC port, says DLC delayed

Owen S. Good is a longtime veteran of video games writing, well known for his coverage of sports and racing games.

The publisher of Batman: Arkham Knight has apologized for the abominable condition of the game's PC port and pledged that fixing it is a top priority. As such, any PC downloadable content, due to launch for console editions on Tuesday, has been put on hold.

"The Batman: Arkham Knight fans are extremely important to us and our highest priority is ensuring PC users get the full, high quality experience of Batman: Arkham Knight they deserve," the chief of community management for all of Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment wrote yesterday.

Saying WBIE "heard the PC gaming community outcry of disappointment," he went on to say "we are taking full responsibility for releasing a product that did not meet our quality standards."

On the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, Batman: Arkham Knight is a critically acclaimed video game. On PC, it is the latest in video gaming's trend of heavily marketed products sold by major publishers in a fundamentally broken state.

Arkham Knight's problems on PC are so severe that WBIE pulled it from the Steam online store in its launch week. Steam's new policy of refunds for digital purchases figured prominently in WBIE's retreat.

The PC port of Batman: Arkham Knight was developed by Iron Galaxy Studios. As the crisis grew during the game's launch week, lead studio Rocksteady took over management of the fixes and issued a patch on June 28, though significant repair still is needed.

Arkham Knight's defects on PC include framerates dropping as low as 10 per second while operating the Batmobile, which figures prominently throughout the game. Speaking to Kotaku last week, quality assurance testers who worked on the game said WBIE had full knowledge of the PC port's substandard quality well before it launched June 23.

"At this time, we believe we have identified a number of fixes for the larger issues that were affecting PC players at launch," the community manager wrote. "These fixes are currently being implemented into the game and once we have been able to do some initial testing, we'll have a better idea on the status of our progress." An update on this effort is promised by next week.

Meantime, The Matter of Familya story extension starring Batgirl, will not launch for PC on July 14 for those who bought the $39.99 "season pass" entitling them to all future downloadable content.

"Our continued focus on getting the right PC fixes in place for the main game has had an impact on the development of all DLC content for the PC version of the game," WBIE said. "We apologize for the delay and only want to make sure that any content that we offer is up to the standards that PC players expect."

The Matter of Family will still launch July 14 for season pass customers on Xbox One and PlayStation 4, and then be available for purchase separately on July 21 for those consoles.

"We can also assure you that because of this latest launch, we are modifying the internal review process for all of our games," WBIE promised.

Batman: Arkham Knight was originally planned for a fall 2014 launch. Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment delayed it twice, for purposes of quality improvement.

"For the players who are continuing to play Batman: Arkham Knight on PC, fixes are continually being made to the game as we await the final updated version," WBIE said.

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