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Default Borderlands - Review @ Game Banshee

December 2nd, 2009, 20:23
A review of Borderlands has been penned at GameBanshee by Brother None. As something new for GameBanshee, there is no score attached to the review.
Here are two tidbits from the concluding part of the review:
Borderlands is an odd game that felt unfinished in many aspects. It doesn't do much particularly well, and what it does do well doesn't carry through (the limitations imposed to multiplayer and the sudden cessation of well-written characters and stories after the opening area are two prime examples).
FPS/RPG hybrids are pretty rare as genre combinations go, and that alone may be enough to draw people in. But the execution leaves much to be desired, and the game really lacks lasting value because of it. Such a flaw hits hack 'n slashes harder than most genres, as the crutch of such a game is its addictiveness, and while Borderlands is good at the 60 meter sprint, it falls flat on its face about halfway through the 5,000 meter track.
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December 2nd, 2009, 20:23
Pretty accurate review I'd say. The one thing I noticed was according to most sites I've read, the Hunter's special ( the bird ) is the best of the four. *shrug* I haven't played a hunter myself, not sure who's right.

I like Borderlands, it's a good game and I'm not sure it's advertised or pretending to be something it's not. Being an RPG is a stretch but every game puts that on the box now, Madden 2019 (Football/RPG)!! Borderlands has just as much right to the claim as any other hack'n'slash I've ever played.

I could use a little more environment variety, I like the look but it never changes. Also I think they really dropped the ball with the character trees. Any build I can come up with for my Soldier would play exactly the same. There needs to be more impact on play style with talent choices.

I wouldn't call this a story game but I'm not as disappointed as the reviewers have been. I'm almost done with DA then I'll finish up my 1st Borderlands play through, see this horrible ending I keep reading about.
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December 3rd, 2009, 00:19
The ending is really bad, but, on the bright side, the second playthrough is a lot of fun. Oh, and the hunter's Bloodwing has it's time and place, but the pathing issues can get really annoying.
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December 3rd, 2009, 02:13
It's an okay game SP, but unless you have friends to play through it with, I wouldn't rush out to get it. Personally I was too scattered in my gaming schedule to keep up with my friends, so I ended up playing alone or with random people. Game felt amusing for brief periods but sort of cotton candy, not very substantial. I agree with Lucky's remark about the Soldier's trees — I played a Soldier, and I found the upgrades very unimaginative. If you have only limited skill trees, you ought to design them with more creativity, and they ought to impact the gameplay more obviously.

I dunno. I'm not a loot whore or someone who really enjoys the "hack and slash" type games. I find them too repetitive and shallow. Borderlands was interesting for a while, but I dropped and forgot it once Dragon Age released.
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December 3rd, 2009, 04:13
Originally Posted by LuckyCarbon View Post
Pretty accurate review I'd say. The one thing I noticed was according to most sites I've read, the Hunter's special ( the bird ) is the best of the four. *shrug* I haven't played a hunter myself, not sure who's right.
I'm partial to The Siren's ability. Her phasing ability has saved my behind more than a few times.

In the SP game, I would believe that the phasing ability is a little better than Bloodwing. It has allowed me to escape and heal when I was surrounded and about to die.

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I'm still just a rat in a cage.
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December 3rd, 2009, 18:18
Originally Posted by LuckyCarbon View Post
Pretty accurate review I'd say. The one thing I noticed was according to most sites I've read, the Hunter's special ( the bird ) is the best of the four. *shrug* I haven't played a hunter myself, not sure who's right.
Probably them. I played Hunter less than any of the four character, so I never really experienced him as a high-level character. In my personal experience the Brick's active power is most meaningful because while the other three have powers supplementary to their gun-playing abilities, a correctly-built Brick can survive almost completely on his fists. Hell, my lvl-50 Brick build has to rely on his fists almost constantly, as my weak-sauce weapons do little damage against the higher-level enemies.

Originally Posted by LuckyCarbon View Post
I like Borderlands, it's a good game and I'm not sure it's advertised or pretending to be something it's not.
Yes and no. Borderlands' advertising was a bit overstated, in pretending the "bazillion guns" thing was a meaningful claim (similar to Bethesda claiming "over 300 endings" was meaningful, odd how neither company has been called on said nonsense claim), in making it seem as if Concept Art Style was their thing and completely novel, and in marketing it as an RPG - though as you said, everyone does that for everything nowadays.

Originally Posted by LuckyCarbon View Post
I wouldn't call this a story game but I'm not as disappointed as the reviewers have been. I'm almost done with DA then I'll finish up my 1st Borderlands play through, see this horrible ending I keep reading about.
Ending being terrible aside, did you like any of the characters outside of the Arid Badlands?

Personally I can't stand the Claptraps, for one, or the Guardian Angel, for two.
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December 3rd, 2009, 21:24
Originally Posted by Brother None View Post
Ending being terrible aside, did you like any of the characters outside of the Arid Badlands?

Personally I can't stand the Claptraps, for one, or the Guardian Angel, for two.
Claptraps are irritating, they're not nearly as funny as Gearbox seems to think they are.

Cletus is amusing, yeah sorry, I'm immature and amused by potty talk. Every time he talks about his mama's wrecked girl parts I crack up.

I do really like the female scientist journal tapes you have to track down on several occasions. That's the part of the game that's actually drawn me into the story, there needs to be more of those.

Other than that? No, I can't say that I do. There is very little character after that to like. I really wanted to see more of Nine-Toes, it's too bad they didn't make him into some kind of over-arching antagonist for the first several zones. They tried to do that with Nine-Toes' "boss" but I honestly don't even remember who it was or when I killed him.

Some back story could have helped flush out the plot. A 2 minute intro video with a panning camera intro and narrative to explain the factions. I generally have no idea who I'm fighting or why. Maybe this was in the manual? I have the steam version and never read it.

The sidequests are generally a distraction, a tighter more linear path would have actually helped the story. You spend too much time wandering and collecting to keep a coherent narrative together.

Yet despite all it's flaws, and it has many, I find, so far at least, it's found a niche in my gaming interests that hasn't been filled in ages. It's a good FPS that doesn't take itself so seriously they threw out the fun in favor of realism.
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