Monday, October 1, 2012
Borderlands 2 Review
Borderlands 2 starts off with a bang. Literally. The train you're on explodes sending you into a frozen wasteland. There you meet the best character in the game. Claptrap, the robotic wonder. The most hilarious and random NPC I've ever seen. He has a misguided idea that you are his minion and he is your master, and pretty much he's right. He sends you fight a gigantic Bullymong named Knuckle Dragger and get his eye back. I'll end the story here so I don't spoil it for people who aren't far along.
There are some useful features of the game, including Second Wind, which revives you if you can kill an enemy while you bleed out. Vehicles are also in play. Driving is fun but the controls are a little sensitive, so you can be screaming down the dusty road and suddenly find yourself airborne in a 90 degree turn from where you just were. The controls for weapons, abilities and pickups are all smooth and precise. The one downside to picking items up, is certain objects can take priority based on proximity rather than direct visual cues. The stats that pop-up can be useful to view which weapons are desirable if you are low on space, but they also block viewing anything else on the ground. The poorest function in the game is the mini-map. The accuracy of it is minimal when dealing with barriers or pits. Driving is exceptionally frustrating trying to gauge the paths. It really could have been done better.
Character skills can be vast, or they can be very specific. Each character's specialties can force you to play the game differently. Currently I am playing as the Commando. His turret is powerful and a particularly effective ally on the battlefield. Other players will enjoy the stealth of the Assassin's sniper, or the devastating sword when up close and personal. Maybe you would enjoy the brute force of the Gunzerker, whose ability whips two guns out to deal extreme damage and who never seems to run out of ammo. Or perhaps you would prefer the Siren. One of only 6 Sirens who can exist in the universe at any given time, Maya has a few abilities up her sleeve. Phaselocking opponents in a stasis bubble allows for uninterrupted fire. Or maybe brainwashing thugs to fight their own buddies. Whichever character you pick, the results speak for themselves.
The best part about this game is the 4 player co-op feature. Battling it out with your buds is some of the most fun I've ever had in a video game. The opportunity to troll is just as much fun as the bond your characters make. A rounded out team with everyone using a separate character is the best strategy, as you get all the uniqueness tossed onto the field. Watch out though. With 4 friends all bunched up together, the loot will rarely be divided evenly. As someone told me, the #1 rule of Borderlands is "YOU SHOOT, I LOOT!"
There are always bigger, badder and more badass weapons to find, so searching for them can be as addictive as the slots. But that's what keeps this game this game interesting. Well, that and finding a few surprises along the way.
Lack of glitches
Weapon pickup displays overwhelming other pickups
Not enough Claptrap
Final Score: 9.5/10 (extra points taken away for not enough Claptrap)