• Borderlands 2 First Look

    So I was one of those kids, I bet theory can remember, who was hyping up Borderlands since its announcement in late 2008. The rarely seen genre of RPGFPS really appealed to me as I really enjoyed the S.T.A.L.K.E.R franchise, the dark undertones and post-apocalyptic backdrop that we see in lots of todayís films and games. The art style was gritty and realistic, a kind of pastiche between Fallout, Diablo and Call Of Duty, was pretty damn groovy too. Then a few months before release the head designer of Borderlands, Randy ĎWhatís a release date?í Pitchford, decided it would be a great idea to change the art direction entirely, from the grimy wasteland realism to a cell shaded brown. I use the word brown to describe the setting because thatís what it was, not a barren wasteland with motes of dust swirling into the deep blue canopy of sky, it was just brown, lots of brown.

    The fact that they made this decision so late meant they hadnít the time to iron out the kinks, though apparently they did add a lot of the dark humour that makes the game what it is in this period so it wasnít all bad. However there were lots of things that consumers really didnít like, such as the promise of a billion guns, which not dissimilar to Peter Molyneuxís empty promises, was complete lies. All the guns looked the same and the player models reloaded all the guns the same loading an invisible pistol clip into a shotgun with a revolver break, just one of the few irritating rougher parts of the game.

    Unlike a lot of large companies gearbox actually listened to its player base and took in all of the woes we had with the game and Borderlands 2 is beginning to look like Borderlands patch 2.0. A huge list of improvements have slowly come to light as we get closer to the September release date, here are some off the top of my head:

    • A gun randomiser that actually freakin works, 87 bazillion guns FFS.
    • Better player models with the ability to customize your appearance (not just your colour like Microsoft paint).
    • A hugely improved enemy AI and smoother animations (in some of the videos Iíve seen bandits roll flip and dodge bullets like bare chested ninjas).
    • Varying zones with a lot less brown (nice giant mushroom forests, lush wild reserves and snowy tundras that donít look like a kid spilt milk on a work surface).
    • LOADS OF NEW PC OPTIONS (check out cl4tpís love letter).
    • A mini map!
    • Lots of new enemies! (Including the goliaths that if you shoot of their helmets they start killing bad guys for you, but they level up after every kill and can turn into badasses then come mess you up.)
    • An arching plot with a villain that you can actually relate to and will have a satisfying ending (hopefully), not squid...
    • The skill trees are a lot more useful and fun now, more practical options and less numbers and percentages (the commandos turret actually looks different depending on your skill tree choices).
    • More dialogue and human interaction, more than just 3 blokes in a town, with some nice sounding voice acting to accompany eccentric and unique characters (like the 13 year old psychopath Tiny Tina).

    Thatís all I can think of about now; Iíll do a full review when it comes out if I can actually bring myself to stop playing it. If you liked the first then youíre going to absolutely emphatically love this game, especially with the new improved multiplayer! Hopefully you enjoyed my first article.
    Comments 1 Comment
    1. Fungum's Avatar
      Fungum -
      Nice first look, looking forward to this game but sadly will have limited time to play it with college and mists of pandaria
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