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Borderlands

Jan 14, 2010


Crescendo
almost nine years ago

Borderlands is in my Steam games list, but I have since uninstalled it.

I too paid for a quarter of the four-pack deal under the impression that my three other friends and I would play together. While the game is fun enough when playing with others (as are most games), the combination of multilayer connectivity issues and the flakiness of my friends conspired against me.

Unfortunately, if you play the game alone, as I often did because I refuse to play with idiot strangers, you quickly come to release that the game is extremely shallow. Outside of the interesting art direction, the world is just DEAD. Talk about a let down.

The introduction movie sets you up to expect that these interesting characters will engage in interesting adventures, but their potential is completely squandered in the lifeless world of Pandora. Fallout 3 manages to breath life, pathos and character into a post-apocalyptic world; Borderlands only manages an interesting aesthetic depicition of an otherwise sterile world. I don\'t expect Fallout 3 levels of sophistication in an FPS loot-whoring game like Borderlands, but I do expect the world and characters to be alive, to have a personality, to have connections with each other, at least in a basic way. Borderlands is somewhere beneash basic.

When I play this game alone I feel isolated and detached. The NPCs are lifeless mannequins with one or two canned lines at most. Otherwise interesting characters are criminally underexplored and relate to nothing in the world, be it place or person. Without the benefit of playing with friends (due to connectivity issues or flakiness or whatever), Pandora is just a vacuum.

Even if you do have a good group of friends to play with regularly, the stillborn feeling of the game is ever-present. It\'s a damned shame really, as the FPS fundamentals and loot whoring are decent enough. Now they just need to give me a good reason to stay in the world outside of basic gameplay.

Maybe the DLC addresses these issues, but by now I just don\'t give a shit.

Borderlands 2 could be great if they learn from their mistakes.