Borderlands - Wargaming Forum and Wargamer Forums
Video Games & Software For the discussion of P.C, Console and Hand Held video games.

 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 10-25-09, 05:12 PM Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Concrete Hero's Avatar
Concrete Hero's Flag is: Wales
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Cardiff
Posts: 2,339
Reputation: 1


Default Borderlands


Taken straight from IGN, but I hate reading things from their page, too narrow!

Normally I would wrap this in a quote bubble, but that much italics might be hard to absorb... Its a big one!

So thank you Charles Onyett from IGN

It's that undeniable impulse that pokes at the pleasure centers of the brain when you're looking at that sleek and impossibly flat television at the front of the electronics store. How much better and brighter would life be if only you could bring it home? You consider what's in your wallet, what kind of space rests between credit balance and limit, maybe for a second what your family might think, and perhaps more importantly how jealous your friends would be. It's what drives economies that thrive on consumerism, and that urge to snatch up glittering new toys is what keeps the action energized in Gearbox's Borderlands, a first-person shooter title that caters to the thief, hero, and adventurer lurking in all of us.

For the uninitiated, this is a loot hunting game like Blizzard's Diablo. The action begins and you're flung out into an open world with a handful of quests and legions of baddies who'll do whatever they can to prevent you from killing their leaders, wiping out an arbitrary number of their compatriots, opening drain valves in their hideouts, snatching up important artifacts and documents, or collecting a large number of shiny objects. There's a tale of a secret vault and advanced technology and a snowy image of a female face that pops onscreen when important things are about to happen, nudging you forward and providing additional narrative context, but this isn't a choice and consequence game with morality systems and labyrinthine quest strings. It's the loot that's the real motivator here.

You'll start out with rusty weapons that look as though they've spent a better part of their existence at the bottom of a bog and it won't be long until you find new weapons that not only look better but have improved functionality. As you progress through the game you'll find shotguns, sniper rifles, submachine guns, handguns, and rocket launchers that glow with elemental effects like fire and lightning and can eat enemies alive with corrosive effects or hit with such an impact that it pulps a target into a gruesome mess. There are even more bizarre and powerful alien weapons towards the later stages. Moreover, as you use a weapon, you'll become more proficient with it, further enhancing the sense that your character is gradually but inevitably becoming a ferocious fighter who can shoot, shatter, and burn all obstacles in the way.

As you level and progress through the story you'll be frequently swapping out gear so you're always outfitted with the best, and feel a surge of jittery anticipation every time an enemy explodes into a cloud of candy colored loot. The character class skill trees, however, which are packed with an abundance of passive abilities, are less interesting. Each class gets one and only one primary action skill, which you'll be using frequently throughout the course of the game. The Hunter class tosses out a bird to attack from afar, the Berserker charges forward and smashes foes with his fists, the Siren enters a temporary invisible state, and the Soldier can drop down a sentry turret to help out in a fight.

As you level you'll earn points that can be allocated into skill trees, which can change up how much damage you do, how much damage you can take, and make your action skill a deadlier ability. The Siren, for instance, can add shock damage to her Phasewalk skill, dramatically shorten its cooldown period, and turn into a contagious inferno after every kill. Yet even with all these options for customization, many skills are percentage bonuses to damage or shields that are more difficult to notice during gameplay. Maybe I'm alone on this one, but a greater number of action skills per class and a larger degree of distinction between some of the skill choices would make the tree progression more exciting. While the skills in Borderlands unquestionably do affect how you fight and deal damage, it seems like there was room to do more here. If you do decide you want to switch up how your skill points are spread out across a skill tree, you can easily pay with in-game money to reset it and redistribute points however you see fit.

The large variety of weapons does make up for a few forgettable skill options to a degree. Since the game feels, moves, and plays like a first-person shooter and most of what you'll be doing is firing weapons and engaging in fast-paced gameplay, perhaps that's the reason Gearbox chose to build in so many possibilities for passive percentage upgrades, so as not to slow things down too much. Perhaps that's also the reason there's no collection of armor pieces or anything else of that sort. Character customization, aside from the guns, skills and handful of accessories, is limited to choosing a name and clothing colors. That's not meant as a criticism -- I think the streamlined character customization works well with the game overall -- but it's something you should be aware of before picking this up. Many players will have their hands full juggling guns, class, grenade, and shield mods, to care, but more hardcore gamers looking for more options for bolstering stats might feel something's missing.

Hopefully that gives you a sufficient overview of the types of methods of customization in the game, and has properly prepared you for what kind of experience this is. If you're rolling your eyes at all this information, think it's boring and inconsequential, and just waiting for me to get to the part where I say if the game is any fun or not, then your heart probably isn't in the right place. That's not to say you'll hate the game, but a frenzied, drooling desire to kill, upgrade, kill and repeat is required to really get the most out of this experience. Were this a typical action-RPG loot-driven kill-fest, such a warning wouldn't be necessary, but considering this game is actually a first-person shooter, perhaps not all prospective buyers might be familiar with how it works.

A real danger for this type of game is having all these items, all these methods of customization, and all this content, and then giving you nothing interesting to shoot at. That's not the case with Borderlands. Amongst your enemies, you'll start off against basic bandits who shuffle between cover spots and fire back at you. Some larger bruisers are more aggressive and carry bigger weapons, and others charge directly at you, sometimes while on fire, to hit you with sharp, rusty weapons. Smaller bandits carry shotguns and get thrown onto their backs whenever they fire, some snipe from a distance, some have shields and others don't, and the way they all move around as fights progress keeps the action fluid, frantic and exciting. Occasionally you'll wind up in absurd situations where you're unloading a string of headshots while standing toe-to-toe with foes and still not bringing them down, but such is the nature of games that favor health bars over realism.

Aside from humans, you fight spiky dog-like skags that spit, jump, slash, and generally make your life hell. Winged Pitch Black-like creatures soar across the terrain before tearing down to eye level with malicious intentions. Worms burrow through underground passages and armored insects launch projectiles and spin wheel-like with deadly momentum across the terrain. Factor in some of the more advanced human soldiers who use deployable turrets, shields, and higher quality armor, as well as the more bizarre creatures I won't mention for fear or spoiling things, and there's a nice mix of enemy types and behavior. They also frequently attack in large numbers, which makes the action supremely satisfying if you're powerful enough and able to wipe them all out in one headlong charge, firing and flipping between weapon types and activating action skills in wonderfully violent concert.

From time to time you'll come up against absolutely monstrous bosses, from a fire-spitting flying behemoth to a titanic lumbering quadruped that serve as a welcome change of pace from the standard battles, and some drop unique loot that can't be found elsewhere. Most of these bosses are found in Borderlands' dungeons away from the main hub areas, separated by a load time. The rest of the world consists of large open spaces, beginning with dry and dusty rock formations and ending in snow-capped mountainous terrain.

While it may feel like you're often moving through places that look vaguely similar, eventually you'll come upon swamps and dockyards and more clustered urban expanses that add more of a sense of variety. Within the various dungeons, you'll also be treated to some fantastic views, particularly when entering boss arenas with sunsets illuminating a patchwork of cliffside dwellings bristling with foes or glowing curvilinear designs etched into alien stone. Mixed in with a convenient transportation system with quick-spawn vehicles or a fast-travel mechanic, it makes for days and nights in a detailed, ramshackle world that feels lived-in and that rewards exploration. On the subject of vehicles, though they're in the game, they're in not particularly integral. They do greatly speed up travel, and can be spawned with rocket or machine gun turrets to help vanquish pesky foes, though just ramming things is a far more effective way to kill whatever's in front of you. Up to two can hop onto a vehicle with one in the driver's seat and one on the turret, which leads into one of the game's biggest features, that that's the multiplayer.

It's entirely possible to have fun by yourself exploring the world, taking on quests, and powering up, but it's a far more entertaining and challenging experience with others around. As people join your game, which can happen at any time, enemies will get more powerful and drop more valuable loot. This means you'll want to bring others in for a chance at getting better stuff, and thankfully Gearbox built its multiplayer system so all your character progress, inventory items, and quests completed in someone else's game is carried back into your game. Assuming you and those you're playing with are at the same point in the main story it's possible to quest together, and then when you decide to play again on your own, you can continue on without missing a beat.

Up to four players can venture together, and it's highly recommended that you try this out because of how chaotic and addictive it can be, especially with a mix of character classes at a moderately high level and good equipment. And for console gamers, it's also possible for two players to explore Pandora in split-screen mode. One thing I'll also recommend is that you're going to want to play with people you know. There are no looting rules in Borderlands, so if an item drops to the ground, anyone can snatch it. Should you bring in some random person to your game and they see a neat purple item drop that's just perfect for you, it's well within their ability to grab it and duck out. While it's better if you play with others, it's best if you play with those you can trust.

Assuming you are able to get a four-person game together, there's always the question of who's going to get the loot. Sure, one class may have a particular skill build that makes them better with SMGs, but what if a nice shotgun drops and everyone in the party has been building their shotgun proficiency? Here the user interface saves the day. When you look at an item sitting on the ground within a certain proximity, a giant item statistic readout pane pops up onscreen that displays all the stats and special effects and how they compare to what you're holding. Switch weapons and its comparison arrows indicating better or worse quality will adjust accordingly. After everyone takes a look and someone decides to pick it up, you can then easily match it up against all the other items sitting in your inventory, letting you know which might be best to use. Anything you don't want could then be sold at any of the game's vending machines, or dropped back onto the ground to allow others to look at its statistical popup and see if it could be useful. This kind of ease of sharing and user-friendliness goes a long way in making quick pickup games far less of a hassle, pulling off the equivalent of World of Warcraft-style item linking in a handy, accessible manner.

There's also the question of replay value, which Gearbox took into account. After you're finished with one playthrough and have completed all the quests in the game world, you'll likely be somewhere in your mid-30s out of a total 50 character levels. The game lets you start over using the same character, bringing along all your experience, skill setups, items, unlocked inventory space -- everything but your quest progress. The good news is upon restarting the world powers up around you, meaning starting level enemies are right near your level and the items they drop are given a boost. This should be a familiar concept to anyone who's been gaming long enough, but it's nice to see it included here, letting friends progress to the cap with their characters by recycling and giving a jolt of strength to the existing content. Even the elite versions of monsters, called Badass in the first playthrough, are upgraded to BadMutha in the second, and bosses will drop the same but more powerful versions of their first playthrough items.

Perhaps after you're all done with that and everyone's maxed at 50, it's time to see who could win in a fight? Well, the game gives you the option to do that as well. At any time you can melee a teammate to try and initiate a duel, and beyond that it's possible to head to special dungeons for some arena player versus player combat. This is a mode purely for fun, but it's nice to see it included since it gives you more of a sense of what all your equipment can do against a human opponent instead of the legions of AI-driven foes you've been melting and dismembering all game long.

In case you've read this far and are still scared off by the game's complexities, it's a surprisingly accessible experience considering all its varying elements. Someone unfamiliar with loot drop styles of games will still have to spend a little while getting acquainted with the game's systems, but overall it's easy to get in to and isn't a game that revels in player punishment. For instance, dying on the field of battle can be circumvented by killing an enemy while in a bleed-out state, and if you're playing with others they can just walk over and revive you with no required special skills. If you do miss the revive window and actually die, the game respawns you at a conveniently located waypoint and only subtracts a percentage of your cash -- you don't lose experience, items, or anything else. Though you do have to keep track of inventory space and ammunition counts, nothing like weapon or item durability ever enters into the equation, minimizing the amount of micromanaging necessary while restocking in town before heading out again into the field, keeping the focus on action.

Through all of this, Borderlands also manages to maintain a strong degree of personality thanks to its sharp, stylized visuals. On consoles the framerate can be a bit jittery in large-scale fights, but otherwise the game's a pleasure to behold, with enemies that actually respond to being pegged with bullets, snapping back their heads, sending them reeling, and occasionally triggering special elemental deaths. It's got nicely detailed open environments, a huge range of weapon models, and though a little more enemy variety would have been appreciated, there's still plenty to take in and admire.

While visuals are one thing, what may surprise some is the game's sense of humor. The few recurring characters are quite funny, mostly due to some solid voiceovers delivering witty, snappy dialogue. The Wall-E-like Claptrap robots, with their penchant for dancing and personalities that draw from seemingly bottomless wells of enthusiasm, consistently serve as a source of comic relief, and you're guaranteed to laugh at the self-deprecating style of Tanis' audio logs. Over the years we've seen so very many action-RPGs lose their sense of mood and character under an avalanche of statistics and magic effects, but that can't be said about Borderlands. It stands out because of its visuals, entertains thanks to its well-designed gameplay, and frequently tickles your sense of humor as foes squeal in pain as lighting shoots from their disintegrating foreheads while your character class jeers and taunts and moves on to the next target. A thumping soundtrack kicks into gear during battles, the game's overworld music tracks lock in well with the tone of the world, and everything in Gearbox's virtual space feels like it fits.



Gearbox's Borderlands is without a doubt a slick, satisfying hybrid title for those who know what to expect. If you're a shooter fan curious what the world of Pandora is all about, then you should know that this is a product built on a foundation of statistical progression, character customization, and one that holds item acquisition high above interesting quest structure and narrative. At the same time, it plays like a shooter, requiring twitch skills to dominate the droves of enemies that stand in between you and your search for a mysterious vault. With the opportunity for up to four to join together for co-operative play, four character classes, a dizzying array of firearms, around 20 or so hours of content for a single playthrough and the option to restart with stronger enemies and loot, there's plenty of content here. It's a thoroughly enjoyable journey that offers a steady stream of rewards that remains convenient and accessible. It's something action role-playing game fans looking for an experience more up-close and brutal than genre entries of the third-person variety should have a blast with, and one of the more memorable products of 2009.



Personally I think thats awesome cover art, but some people have complained... I say funk them, what about you?

I have yet to get a hold of Borderlands for myself And wont be able to till the end of next week.

Concrete Hero is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 10-25-09, 09:59 PM
Senior Member
 
hells_fury's Avatar
hells_fury's Flag is: Australia
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Australia
Posts: 1,192
Reputation: 1
Default

im in the same boat of having to wait till friday for PC release. me and a friend have it pre ordered and are planning co oping it on the sat after work.

i love the change in artwork, its different which makes it so much nicer to look at, but at the same time maybe they could of released it with the option to go with realistic graphics or to have cartoony graphics to make everyone happy. i know people who whined about the art.

im looking forward to the looting hehe, been a while since ive played a good looting game and i cant wait, the videos make it look fun as. ive got my fingers crossed that it delivers.

a warning on a crossbow

'It is a serious piece of killing equipment and should not be purchased by children under the age of 9. '

if your bored my MSN is hells_fury@live.com, add me and ill talk with anyone :p

hells_fury is offline  
post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 10-25-09, 11:39 PM
Senior Moderator
 
darkreever's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: New Jersey, little ways out of NYC
Posts: 6,754
Reputation: 23


Default

Been playing it for some time now and I gotta say I'm loving every minute. The map is huge, tons of enemies, lots of guns, and the game is great whether you go it alone or take on the world with some friends. I have a loner soldier built for single player gaming, and another soldier built for teams; each have a few similar skills but after that the similarities end. My loner is all about dealing loads of damage and taking less of it in return, my support soldier is all about exactly what I just called him, supporting the team.


Problem I have with teams is if you have even one selfish member, it devolves to every man for himself. We had to kick out one of our original group because he would leave us to fight off the enemy while he looted the place and proceeded not to share.


Gamewise, I remember being told that once you start a game you will see no loading screens. I can say beyond a shadow of a doubt that that is crap; every time you go to a different area you get a loading screen and seeing the word loading while you wait doesn't help with the whole no loading screen bit.

Damnation is paved on good intentions; subtle and sugar coated or blunt and honest
A hero is someone who steps up when everyone else backs down.
Popularity is what people strive for when they lack the strength to be themselves.


Seriously, is it really that hard to write reviews without spoilers?

Reporting Posts - read this
darkreever is offline  
post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 10-26-09, 04:08 AM
Senior Member
 
Wusword77's Avatar
Wusword77's Flag is: USA
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: New York
Posts: 1,624
Reputation: 4


Default

This title is with out a doubt worth getting. I personally love the game and find it to be one of the best experences I've had all year. While its not going to win any game of the year awards, I'd give that to Uncharted 2 (and I've played Modern Warfare 2), it is by far the most fun I've had playing a game this year.

Granted if you have no friends the game is somewhat boring, but if you got people to play with its the best game out there at the moment.
Wusword77 is offline  
post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-01-09, 12:32 PM
Senior Member
 
hells_fury's Avatar
hells_fury's Flag is: Australia
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Australia
Posts: 1,192
Reputation: 1
Default

got it 2ish days ago, been co - oping with freinds, 30 hours of playing, level 44, on the second play through and im no where near bored. sadly its a workday tomorrow haha but prob hit level 50 by next friday with ease, any conformation on the max level, so far ive just heard rumors on a max level of 50 which sucks.

im a ranger ^^ they are some epic pawnage, the bird is unbelievable OP in duels, 1 hit KO on the same level, againts the AI enemies its not so bad, also love the ignore shield skill, so good, saved so many bullets for me

a warning on a crossbow

'It is a serious piece of killing equipment and should not be purchased by children under the age of 9. '

if your bored my MSN is hells_fury@live.com, add me and ill talk with anyone :p

hells_fury is offline  
post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-01-09, 03:20 PM
Senior Moderator
 
darkreever's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: New Jersey, little ways out of NYC
Posts: 6,754
Reputation: 23


Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by hells_fury View Post
any conformation on the max level, so far ive just heard rumors on a max level of 50 which sucks.
Max level is set at fifty, but why does that suck? Its gonna take you another one or two playthrough's just to get there and you already spent thirty hours getting to forty four.

Its already taken you over a full day to get as far as you have and it'll take you at least another 6-12 hours to reach the limit unless you play nonstop. (It took me over a week to bring my lone wolf support gunner to thirty six and beat the game once around.)

Damnation is paved on good intentions; subtle and sugar coated or blunt and honest
A hero is someone who steps up when everyone else backs down.
Popularity is what people strive for when they lack the strength to be themselves.


Seriously, is it really that hard to write reviews without spoilers?

Reporting Posts - read this
darkreever is offline  
post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-01-09, 08:39 PM
Senior Member
 
hells_fury's Avatar
hells_fury's Flag is: Australia
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Australia
Posts: 1,192
Reputation: 1
Default

it sucks because theres a limit, i know they need a limit but for me, in a game it starts to lose its appeal once i max. im upto crazy earls on the second play through atm so a fair distance from actually beating the game, ill most likely get to 50 when i beat the game again and then what, all thats left is challenges really of just killing stuff, fun but it does get boring after a while

a warning on a crossbow

'It is a serious piece of killing equipment and should not be purchased by children under the age of 9. '

if your bored my MSN is hells_fury@live.com, add me and ill talk with anyone :p

hells_fury is offline  
post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-10-09, 08:54 PM
Senior Member
 
Wraithian's Avatar
Wraithian's Flag is: USA
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Cheyenne, WY
Posts: 924
Reputation: 1


Default

Hey, yes yes, "oooh, this bastard's pulling some threadnomancy shit--kick his ass!" But hear me out first...

New DLC coming out for this fan-fuckin'-tastic game on the 29th. Offering...*wait for it...* STORAGE! Yes, that's right kids, all that fantastical shit you have to either pawn or pitch because you just don't have the goddamn room in your inventory due to multiple class mods for reconfiguring your character, the guns that are great only in certain situations, and the ass-ton of medkits people seem to think necessary, can find a nice, comfortable home in the bottom of a storage crate where it will never see the light of day again.

"Moxxi's Underdome Riot," releases on the Xbox marketplace January 29th. Read more here: http://gbxforums.gearboxsoftware.com...ad.php?t=89792 and here: http://www.fragland.net/news/Second-...-corner/21676/

Oh, and self-important plug here--anyone looking to work with a lvl 50 Mord, hit me up: WraithHeart on XBL.

Level me up! I, too, wish to storm the lands of mortals reaping what is truly mine...but for now, I am but a wee spot of energy...

Clicky!





"I embrace death without fear as I embrace life without regret."

Last edited by Wraithian; 12-10-09 at 08:56 PM. Reason: Forgot to enter the goddamn link.
Wraithian is offline  
Reply

  Lower Navigation
Go Back   Wargaming Forum and Wargamer Forums > HO Off Topic > Video Games & Software

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Wargaming Forum and Wargamer Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in









Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome