[Level 2: Human]
Why I want Borderlands - anybody agree?
Wrote up some thoughts about why I want Borderlands otherwise see below and let me know what you think
87 Bazillion guns. Interested? Borderlands asks what if an RPG and an FPS had a baby? Well I’ve seen the result, and it was a hideous monster which cannot be unseen. Fortunately, Borderlands is only hypothetically asking the question, and the hypothetical answer is a combination of Fallout, Diablo and World of Warcraft: World of Fallblo. Sensibly, Gearbox shortened this to just ‘Borderlands.’
Randy Pitchford has tried to incorporate the addictive loot collection aspects and leveling progression of an action-RPG with the visceral, frenetic gameplay of an FPS. Add in a touch of stylized art direction and a busload of procedurally generated weaponry and you’re close to pinning down Borderlands.
While there are some relevant concerns, I’m confident given Randy Pitchford’s lineage that he can successfully craft a unique and rewarding experience.
I don’t know what the question is. The answer is ‘guns’
This game is at its foundation a first person shooter, and every FPS hinges on its guns. Borderlands uses a random generation system a-la-Diablo where most of the guns are created through an algorithm. While this naturally means that most guns will be of the ‘pea-shooters of craposity’ variety, there will always be the excitement of collecting a new weapon and hoping the dice-roll gods smiled upon you.
An additional perk of the random gun generation system is the introduction of a loot fetish to the run and gun gameplay, something traditionally only found in an MMO. The drive for ‘just one more quest,’ or ‘killing one more boss’ to potentially find that epic rare gun is compelling, especially when you have crippling OCD like I do.
The introduction of RPG-esque damage numbers for every shot really ups the ante in terms of damage feedback. When the occasional critical impact strikes and that huge number appears over the head of an enemy and a huge chunk of its health vanishes, you won’t be able to help feeling like you’re packing serious firepower.
Hopefully by the time you reach the limit cap some of the numbers will seem so obscene compared to the start of the game that you’ll gain perspective on how far you’ve come. This will imbue a sense of development that is frequently lacking in pure FPS games where the best they can do for progression is give you a slightly better gun.
Stylized? What does that even mean?
Although it was a late development, Borderlands’ new art style is a welcome one. While every FPS game these days is going for a gritty and realistic style, Gearbox targeted a mix between cartoony and lifelike graphics. Even if some cynical players suggest it was to simplify the graphics and improve performance, who cares? It looks great and it’s distinctive and it will hopefully stay fresh throughout.
Additionally, Borderlands possesses a comic style that is unique. When claptrap, the sarcastic robot guide featured in Borderlands’ promotional videos, asks his microphone operator ‘did your mom burn you with cigarettes as a child?’ or ‘who do I have to suck off to get fucking suicide bomber’s balls to drop,’ you know you’re in for an ‘alternative experience.’ Far too few games have a really cynical tone and although story is not central in Borderlands, hopefully some of that translates through into the atmosphere.
Ok, maybe pedigree is a strong statement given they’ve only developed Opposing Force and the Brothers in Arms series, but I have confidence in Gearbox. Opposing Force seamlessly built upon the Half-Life world and created a unique experience that dovetailed nicely with the original game. While Borderlands is a new IP and therefore won’t have a preexisting cache with gamers, there have been no crippling missteps from Gearbox in the past. There’s always a first time for everything; hopefully this isn’t it.
So it’s all sunshine and buttercups?
There are a few elements of Borderlands that I’m deeply concerned about, and it has to do with online behavior. Of course I’m referring to the great plague known as internet douchebaggery that is sweeping our great nation. There is no system in Borderlands for allocating loot drops in a group, it’s first come first served. This means that teams aren’t encouraged to work together and everybody will make a mad dash to scoop up gun drops.
In a game that is entirely about item collection and trading, this overlooked mechanic is practically deal breaking. The only reason I still hold out hope is that Gearbox will quickly realize how foolish this omission is and release a patch. It seems so easy to implement. I’m sure there’s a coder somewhere with a spare cocktail napkin on hand to pound this out.
Another concern is that Borderlands will seem to be just more of the same. The post-apocalyptic environment in which the game takes place is a bit overused these days, especially after the exhausting coverage Fallout 3 received last year. Hopefully there are enough distinguishing characteristics to keep the environment unique and original.
Notwithstanding these few concerns, I’m extremely excited for Borderlands. Many game types have been mixed before: action-adventure, puzzle-platformer and sports-game-FMV-hybrid, most notably in the late great ‘Madden’s revenge.’ The closest the FPS and RPG have come to really being integrated are games such as System Shock 2 and Deus Ex without fully fleshed out leveling mechanics. Borderlands could inject some much needed originality into these genres.
Best of all, we don’t have long to wait until we can get our hands on this bad boy and its 87 bazillion guns! Who else is excited? Hit up the comments!
Last edited by Technophile; 10-19-2009 at 06:59 PM.
Reason: removed links
If it bleeds, He can kill it
The more i hear about this game the more I want it. I dont know wheter to keep playing something else or get this now. I know that if I do get it I will get immersed and I`ll be running around all day, like you said "The drive for ‘just one more quest,’ or ‘killing one more boss’ to potentially find that epic rare gun". To me its like Fallout but with a shit ton of guns. I just dont want to pick it up, get half way through and then have to stop cause of MW2. The rest of my year is done once I get that game.
[Level 11: Spinal Tap]
There are lots of live feeds on Justin TV. I looks kinda... soulless? Like you are literally just playing to get better guns. The shooting mechanic looks so fucking 5 years ago, I dunno. I'm getting it anyway, fuck you.
[Level 6: Robot]
The main advertising bullet point for this game is it has up to 87 Bazillion guns.
Sure it has four player co-op but after you beat the game, am I really going to keep playing to get a thousand different guns, let alone 87 Bazillion?? Doesn't look like my bag. I'll wait for Infinity Ward's latest CoD for my FPS needs. A hodge podge mash up of a FPS and light RPG elements doesn't appeal to me.
[Level 6: Robot]
I'm getting it. I'll probably get MW2 when it gets cheaper now with all thats going on with it.
And I love vehicular combat.
[Level 2: Human]
Yeah I hear you ...
and I definitely worry too that it's going to be soulless ... hopefully they will have some interesting environments etc. and continue to support / refine the game but who knows ... is the diablo loot mechanic enough for me? Probably ... I have obsessive tendencies ... but hopefully it all comes together. I wish there was more customization of the characters.
[Level 4: Cyborg]
Diablo loot mechanic makes any game good. Just look at Sacred 2. Biggest pile of fail ever, if it weren't for it's loot system I would of never purchased it and played it to death. It's also the reason I bought, beat, and Enjoyed the hell out of Too Human, and can't wait for it's sequel.
I don't think the weapons sold me it was more about the co-op with freinds ( sniper/hunter FTW )
The hunter guy has a pet hawk as a weapon. Roland from The Dark Tower anyone?
[Level 6: Robot]
Because he's the only one to ever use a hawk as a weapon? Actually, he did use it more effectively that most though.....Now that I think about him, I am going to play as the Hunter exclusively for that reason.
Originally Posted by Jon Bloodspray
[Level 2: Human]
I wonder if the game doesn't sell that well, which given the whole industry is down (NPD numbers just came out weak for September below expectations) it probably won't ... whether they're really going to support it post release ... maybe most people just give up on it and all teh balancing tweaks etc. don't get done.
I was thinking more of the sniper in TF2 I feel obliged to quote him everytime I kill someone using a sniper borderlands will be no different
Not saying he was the only one, just saying that's awesome. Love me some mid-world.
Originally Posted by CaffeineKnight
I don't see any reason that Gearbox wouldn't support it. They've already announced one DLC pack, and you can tell that they guys are really behind the game. They won't just give up on it. They're not going to patch it every week, but, hell, even bankrupt Ascaron supported the console version of Sacred 2 somewhat. I'm sure Gearbox will do better than that at the very least.
Originally Posted by lstill01
[Level 5: Mech]
I've only recently jumped on the "hype train", still a little unsure to by it now or hold off. The more I see and read about the gameplay though, the more it reminds me of a first-person Phantasy Star Online for some reason. That is actually what is really selling me on the game right now. Of course, Borderlands could remind me of just about any action RPG but I'm most familiar with PSO. I'm probably just crazy though :P
Also, I've been looking around and haven't been able to find out whether Borderlands will have dual-login for split-screen play on the PS3 or not. I'm sure it will, or at least it better haha, but I was wondering if anyone heard anything about it.
The sure way to set yourself up for disappointment is to hype yourself up full of expectations.
[Level 2: Human]
Ha nice ... and yeah - I'm sure hyping yourself up a ton is a good way to get disappointed ... like how everybody hyped Uncharted 2 a ton and then it was *pretty good* like one of the 5 or 6 best games of the year, not 'omg the greatest game of all time.' At least in my opinion ...
Originally Posted by Gatsby
Don't worry I'm not overhyped for Borderlands, in fact I'm already sort of worried / factoring in disappointment especially given no trading system but we'll see - I'm 'cautiously optimistic.'
[Level 3: Humanoid]
I'm pretty excited for this game. I agree with most of the points in the OP, ecspecially the 87 bazillion guns. The fact that I can get a (probably) unique gun is awesome. Talking with friends about interesting guns that we've seen will last longer than the week it takes for all of us to beat the game.
I'm pretty pumped for this game, but I'm not expecting a game of the year.
Am I the only one who notices that this guy keeps spamming his blog in each thread he starts? I thought I reported it once, guess I'll give it another whirl.
2008. Wildwood, New Jersey
s'funny. When I first heard about and saw the screen shots for Borderlands, I was neck deep in Fallout 3. So I got caught up in the post apocalyptic hype. But as time went on, I became less and less interested with the prospect of playing this game. Then just last week I removed it from my GameFly Q completely. I don't play multiplayer, and the 87 Bazillion guns(or whatever) isn't nearly enough to get me excited about it. Maybe some day I'll give it a go, but right now, it is just a 'meh' to me.
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