I was a shade late to the party with the original Borderlands when it hit consoles in 2009. Most of my friends had already moved on and no one wanted to play but still I found myself strangely compelled by the game as I played through it on my own. What I found was a game that was low on a quality story but extremely high on fun factor. At the time I had vowed that Borderlands 2 would be in my console the day it hit shelves.
Taking place 5 yrs after the events of the original, Borderlands 2 takes us back to Pandora with a 5 new characters (4 at launch with the Mecromancer coming a month later as DLC).
- Maya – The Siren uses phaselock and abilities similar to Lilith from the original
- Salvador – The Gunzerker who takes the role of insane tank over from Brick but can actually dual wield weapons as his special ability
- Axton – The Commando, resembles Roland and uses Auto-Turrets
- Zer0 – The Assassin who can create decoys of himself to distract enemies
- Gaige – The Mecromancer who was not available at the time of release and arrived about a month after the game’s release DLC (free to those of us who pre-ordered). Gaige has a pet Robot who she can deploy to dispatch some serious hurt on enemies.
Much has changed in the short time since the original game. Since the original Vault Hunters defeated the Destroyer, a new valuable mineral called Eridium has begun invading Pandora’s crust resulting in a Hyperion Corporation’s employee known as Handsome Jack seizing control of this new mineral and using it to take over the planet and ruling with it’s citizens with an Iron Fist. Rumors had begun spreading through the galaxy of a larger more valuable Vault on Pandora bringing in Vault Hunters from far and wide in search of these riches only to be killed by Handsome Jack and thus begins the journey through Borderlands 2.
Borderlands 2 takes the gameplay from the original title and build upon it. Just like the original, players start off by picking their character class, and taking on new missions/quests given to them by job boards and by speaking with other NPCs in the world. As the player gains experience and levels up, they can decide which of the 3 specialities they want to assign the points to. 4 Player Co-op makes a triumphant return resulting in loads of laughs, gun play an hours upon hours of social gaming.
The enemies by and large haven’t changed much but there have been some new interesting and challenging additions to the portfolio of endless baddies. Their AI is improved upon to some degree but I mostly found them to be rather mindless. It’s the sheer number of enemies and their attacks that tend to put people on their backs.
All in all Borderlands 2 is just a whole lot more of what the original title brought. Guns, Explosions, treasure hunting, guns and more guns. Hardly a bad thing. The story was still a little to be desired as I found myself just not caring and wishing I could skip past the story moments in favor of just getting on with the looting. I’ve now finished the game 3 times, with 2 different character builds. The Gunzerker and now the Mecromancer. I just can’t seem to get enough of the social aspect of this title because I’m rarely if ever in a game with any less than 3 other people and we all help each other complete missions, Bad Ass challenges or just farming areas for the best loot. I’m now well over 400hrs into this game and while I still have about 5 more games that need to be finished, I keep coming back for more as more and more of my friends get the game and want to play or ask for help. It’s rare that a game can captivate me the way this one has.
This is a must have for any gamer.
Feed Your Console gives Borderlands 2 an enthusiastic gun toting 9.5 out of 10
- 4 player Coop makes for some great social gaming marathons
- New variants on familiar character classes and the new Mecromancer
- Keeping the basic recipe for gameplay the same
- Weak story – I just couldn’t bring myself to care about it