Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel – PC
Developer: 2K Australia
Publisher: 2K Games
Release Date: NA, Oct. 14th, 2014
Nerd Rating: 8/10
Reviewed by Kidd
Alright guys, so it’s been six days since the release of 2K games, “Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel,” and BOY am I in love with it. 2K Games might very well be labeled in history as making some of the best, more notably funniest, of games as the Borderlands trilogy. I still remember that crisp day when I got my very first Borderlands game, and I have been a fan ever since. Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel takes an interesting dive into Handsome Jack’s history and rise to madness from being a low level Hyperion Programmer to a Power hungry war lord with the power of a god. Hell by the end of the game, if you’re anything like me, you’ll fall in love with the handsome devil yourself.
The game comes with four playable characters such as Wilhelm who was a previous Borderlands 2 boss. In addition to him, the main character Athena was also an NPC in the Secret Armory of General Knoxx. Nisha was also an optional boss in Borderlands 2. And of course, Claptrap is our well-known Vault hunting companion and the mascot of the entire Borderlands series. This drastically improves the gameplay for Borderlands fans who are in it for the story, getting to see the origins of their most beloved characters.
Taking place in the timeline between Borderlands 1 and Borderlands 2, this game focuses on Hyperion’s enigmatic rise as well as Handsome Jack’s descent into insanity. The story starts with Athena being interrogated by Lilith the Siren as she questions her choice to join up with Handsome Jack in the first rise. Explaining herself, she was too poor to pass up the job. Nisha wanted to have fun. Unable to go against his programming, Claptrap was forced to. As we well already know, Wilhelm already worked for Hyperion.
As you’re thrown into the game not much changes from the last one. You have to run around the Hyperion ship fighting Dahl soldiers and trying to save Handsome Jack. But as soon as you go through this preliminary stage of fighting and shooting, you are sent to the moon where the real fun begins. As Claptrap, I was able to scour the moon for hours without need of oxygen, and that might have been the greatest thing. You’re able to practically fly in this low gravity environment and butt stomp your foes.
You’re introduced to new wonky characters who die hard Borderlands fans new and old will come to love. They even brought back something that was missing from Borderlands 2, the cray cutscene titles for bosses. They’re the things that made me love the first one, and the second one needed a lot more. They bring it back in their crazy niche way along with turning up the heat drastically. I have never died as much in a Borderlands game before, I’ll tell you that much for sure.
Now, after seeing the amazing gravity system and double jumps and butt stomps, I already loved the game. It was so innovative for an original idea. Now, introduce Cryo weapons and Laser guns. Simply. Amazing. I hated them at first, because I only found laser-like shotguns. But I gave the game some time and found Ghostbuster-esque lasers which absolutely dominated on the battlefield. And freezing enemies solid? Well, it was like I was born to do it.
Another great instance of gameplay that also comes from choosing Claptrap the Fragtrap as your character, you are introduced to Vaulthunter.exe a program that is Claptrap’s special ability. Using this skill analyzes your situation and picks the most optimal outcome for that situation. Some instances bringing a Claptrap minion out to wreak havoc on your enemies, other times to turn into a pirate ship with fully loaded cannons. Sometimes you’ll even bring a full on laser disco party trashing all enemies in your way. However the outcomes are usually totally subjective and or random, but that’s kind of Claptrap’s life isn’t it?
Now, as much as I hate to say it, we have to talk about the flaws. Through the game I encountered many different obstacles in gameplay and in travel. My first experience: the driving system. Horrible, absolutely disgraceful. Due to the moons’ gravity, it’s like you’re driving a Tonka truck in a pool and I’m not exaggerating. Not until much later in the game when you get the stingray, is it even possible to tolerate the driving. Then it’s just barely acceptable. You’ll find yourself falling short of jumps, running off cliffs, and hitting every invisible wall known to man as well as every small pebble being the next Mount Everest.
Moving on from driving, we focus on the bugs. Unable to know if Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel handles better on the Xbox due to losing mine, I know this PC version had too many bugs to count. Starting with facing the Red Belly Boss, my character killed Belly and not Red. Red seemed to lose himself in the rafters and simply stare at me, while my objective pre-emptively updated it self into being done with the mission. What was I rewarded with? Unrelenting waves of midget lunatics and no opening of the gate to next area. Knowing it was a glitch I powered down the game and rebooted it. Now, I was back in the Hyperion base with all of my equipment and I had the exact same objective after killing Red Belly. But, I was unable to get back to the moon because I had to get into the moonshot cannon once more – and it didn’t let me. Rebooting my game once again fixed the problem, but did I really have to experience twenty minutes of glitch city to get to the end of a five minute mission?
Throughout the game there were many more glitches and bugs including a mission where I had to buttstomp brain bugs. My game would not register it when I did it though and after searching and scouring the internet I found out I had to remove all my skill points. Why? Because playing as Claptrap the Fragtrap you have a Fragmented Claptrap skill tree. And if you update a particular skill, the skill where it allows you to release an cryo nova every single time you buttstomp, the elemental damage will register first and not the physical damage of the butt stomp. Throwing these glitches and bugs aside, they can’t throw me off of the love I have for Borderlands. After playing every single one, multiple times through completion and mountain dew filled weekends, I totally am still in love with this game for all it’s worth. In a game where story is all that counts, that is what I’m there for. The story. The story of how Handsome Jack rose to power and how all these vault hunters came to hate him. That is all I really want in a game. I’m no COD fan, hell I cheat half the time just so I can see the rest of the story. But that’s just me!
All in all, this game is not for everyone. Honestly it’s only for those die hard Borderlands fans in my mind due to the attraction of the story and origins. However, this game will make you grind on side quests, and many of them, to get to that precious story.
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