It’s time to wash the roadkill off of Marcus’s bus, because we’re going back. Yep, thats right back to Pandora! The original Borderlands exploded onto the scene in Oct. 2009, and was very successful for a new IP. How successful you say, well thirty-three of my fifty-six friends on Steam own this great game. Even better the word around Geekdom is that Borderlands 2 improves on the original in almost every way! So get in, set down, and buckle up its going to be a bumpy ride.
Pandora is bigger and shinier than ever. The good people at computerandvideogames.com reported Borderlands 2 is 50% to 60% larger than its predecessor. So all would be vault hunters should prepare for a long haul. The dangerometer (yes I’m inventing words) is ramped up as well. The new Borderlands will introduce at least a dozen new baddies with improved AI to flank and murder you in some horribly demented way. The most impressive change to Pandora for me is look how shiny it is. It maintains the cell-shaded cartoonish art style of its predecessor, but added a kaleidoscope of bright colors. Borderlands was for the most a bland sandcovered desert wasteland. This was not necessarily a bad thing, but it did get a little redundant.. Borderlands 2 has sand as well ,but also includes grass, an endless sea of mountain ranges, and (according to some screenshots) a tropic forest or two. Just look at the differences in these screenshots.
Most of Borderlands looked like this: rocks, weeds, bland colors, and redundant buildings.
Borderlands 2: Where in the wide wide world of Pandora is this?
Borderlands 2: A cell-shaded kaleidoscope of awesomeness!
Borderlands 2 is still a single-player or four player co-op experience. The co-op in the original was amazing, and there’s no reason to think that will change in the sequel. As for classes well, the names have changed, but the song remains the same. Salvador is the Gunzerker with the ability to dual wielding weapons. Salvador is a big guy (ala Brick). He is built to take damage as well as dealing it out. Zero the ninja-assassin is tall and thin. His power is to strategically place a hologram of himself. This tricks the badies into a easley flanked position to finish of with your sword or a well placed bullet to the brain pan squish. He is also intend to be a long distance headshotting destroyer of men (ala Mordecai). Maya is a siren (the only class to emerge with the same title from it predecessor) She is the stereotypical badass female in the game (ala Lilith and thats ok). that works well for all the elusive women gamers out there, or for you guys who like to play as a chick. Her power is a phase lock which traps the target suspending it in midair. The doomed badie can no longer attack; however, it can still be riddled with bullets. This would will be an invaluable asset for crowd control. Finally this leaves Axton. Axton is a commando, he is a midrange support character (I believe, also ala Roland) Axton special is the turret 2.0 Which almost works as another character dealing damage to anything in range until the ability needs to recharge. Each character has a diverse amount of options in their skill trees, leaving the player the ability to tailor their character to their liking. Introduced in Borderlands 2 is the Badass Point System. These little beauties are earned through you travels by well accomplishing badass feats. BPS earned can be spent on permanent stat boosting abilities, or to change your character’s appearance. With all this depth to the character classes it will definitely lead to a entertaining single player, or (more likely) the best co-op experience available.
Introducing your merchants of death and dismemberment from left to right: Axton, Maya, Zero, and last but not least Salvador!
Here is an example of the character customization using the badass point system
The overwhelming issue people had with the original Borderlands was the campaign’s story. I will not go into details here, but to summarize the story was almost nonexistent, the plot was boring and dull, also the anticlimactic ending was a monumental disappointment. I sincerely hope Gearbox truly attempts to make a fitting storyline this time around. My understanding of the plot goes like this a man named Handsome Jack takes credit for the players’ exploits concerning the vault, and finds a valuable gem inside. These gems appear all over Pandora after the vaults was opened. Jack uses his newfound wealth to acquire the planets largest arms manufacture, Thus positioning himself as the most powerful man on Pandora. Yep you guessed it, his mind is set on world domination, and only you can stop him (with the help of three friends if you want). I believe that is it in a nutshell. If Gearbox can indeed make an enjoyable story that immerses the player in the world of Pandora then Borderlands 2 could be the sleeper hit of the year.
Spoiler alert! Don’t shake hands with Handsome Jack. He’s a dick.
Borderlands 2 will be a must have game this fall The amount of character customization in the game is a real improvement over its predecessor. The superbly polished artstyle, along with Borderlands excessive violence will allow you to paint a crimson red masterpiece with you weapon of choice. The demented fun loving npc that roam pandora are always interesting be them friend or foe, The fact that its co-op is so enjoyable makes this a great game for a group of friends, a Lan, or playing online with strangers. Borderlands 2 is going to be one crazy adventure, and it all starts September 18th. Enjoy the ride!