Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel
More of a good thing
By Bradley Lewis
(Full disclosure, I am huge fan of Borderlands. I have put extensive hours into the previous two games, which includes completing all the DLC for both games. So the following may have a slight bias, but then again it comes with (too) many hours in the franchise.)
The planet Pandora has provided many memories to gamers in the previous installments of Borderlands. We have encountered the Vault, a surprise turn of events in the story, hilarious spoofs of pop culture, and also Butt Stallion. All of this was humorous and many hours of gameplay, but the developers have decided in this installment to mix it up with a change of setting. This time 2K Australia has taken us to a different location- Pandora's Moon.
Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel starts out with a name that gives us a new word and adequately describes the events of the game. Borderlands: Pre-Sequel (PS) takes place in between Borderlands 1 and 2. The game involves the villain of Borderlands 2, Handsome Jack, as well as many other characters from the Borderlands universe. All of the Vault Hunters that you play in this game have been characters in other Borderlands' games, whether it be in the actual games or in their DLC. We of course encounter our favorite dancing robot in Claptrap, but this time as a playable character. The other playable characters include Athena- from The Secret Armory of General Knoxx DLC from Borderlands 1, Wilhelm- from Borderlands 2, and Nisha- also from Borderlands 2. This is in fact a pre-sequel.
Borderlands: PS is exactly the sort of game that you expect it to be, especially if you have played any of the previous installments of the franchise. It is an FPS that has a distinct cartoonish style that likes to make fun of itself and all other game types. There are many side missions that are directly aimed at poking fun at other popular games or at pop culture. This is what makes Borderlands fun and interesting. It does not take itself all that serious and it is very entertaining while doing so. Ultimately if you liked either of the previous games then you will not be disappointed, or will you?
As a looter-shooter, Borderlands has always been a game that gives you "Guns, Guns, Guns." There are in addition to all the previous gun types, a couple of new ones. The laser weapon type and also the railgun. The laser weapon type is very effective but has the kick of a mule when you fire it. it fires a continuous beam that does particularly high damage if you can keep the beam on your target. The railgun is an immensely powerful single, sometimes multiple, beam weapon that can kill most opponents in just a couple shots but once again it kicks like none other and has a small clip size/long reload times. Both are great additions to the game, but while reviewing we found that laser weapons to be the most bang for your buck.
Borderlands: PS brought brings many previous memories of the franchise back to light, while also improving on the previous game. Borderlands used to involve much running around over long distances that made the game monotonous. However, since you are on the moon of Pandora, movement in Borderlands: PS is much better. With much less gravity on the moon, you can jump extremely high. With being on the moon, also comes a lack of atmosphere. The game addresses this concern at the beginning, in which you have little O2 bubbles around your head that you have to keep filled with oxygen. Pandora's moon has plenty of oxygen though, you just have to be in the right places to find it. There are what you could call, columns or springs of oxygen that spring forth from the surface of the moon that replenish your supply, and also enemies drop canisters of oxygen after you kill them some of the time. Oxygen is necessary for obvious reasons, it slowly dwindles your health if you run out. The bonus to the new oxygen meter are the perks that come with your oxygen system that can lead to more unique benefits depending upon the amount of O2 you have or the fact that you are airborne. Also since you can jump much higher on the moon, you also have the ability to use your O2 supply to boost one time in mid air which means you can increase the amount of distance you travel in any direction, which helps when you need to make a 90 or 180 degree turn in mid jump.
Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel is as stated previously more of a good thing. There is nothing revolutionary in the game. They seem to have just taken the formula from previous games, added some new features, and tweaked a few old ideas. There is still the same comedy and parody of pop culture and other video games. You will find yourself laughing at some side quests and see that they are directly poking fun at famous movies and people. It is an enjoyable FPS that can bring along the co-op fun that you may be pursuing.
Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel receives a 8.3 out of 10.0 from Game Review Radio.
You can follow Bradley Lewis and his thoughts on politics, video games, life, and just general sports knowledge on Twitter @BradleyDLewis. You can also follow all of us here at Game Review Radio on Twitter as well @GameReviewRadio.