Borderlands - 360 - Preview 2
Do you love Halo? What about Diablo? Well if so, then Borderlands may be up your alley as Gearbox Software is ready to unleash their very first attempt at mixing the role-playing genre with the shooter genre. Are you ready to dig into the world of Pandora? If so, let’s take a deeper look at one of the year’s most anticipated titles.
Changing up the art style, Gearbox Software made it a point to refer to their new look as conceptual art rather than cel-shading. Having seen one of their artist’s tinkering around with the art style, the team decided to roll with the new look late in development since they determined it would be much more fitting as Borderlands is out to achieve a gritty world to embark through. On top of that, the title is set to feature realistic lighting, so they hope that their fans accept the new look with open arms.
Allowing for four-player co-op, Borderlands is much more about the multiplayer experience than it is about trekking through the world by your lonesome. Providing split screen, system link and online connectivity, Borderlands allows players to trade loot that is found within the session among the group. Many of the loot that is found are player specific, so it’s essential to communicate with one another on what you have found from your recently deceased enemies.
Demonstrating a mission on where one of the four main characters, Brick, heads off to kill spitter skags, Borderlands commands players to work together to accomplish tasks. From the killing of “Badass Fire Skags” (otherwise known as leaders in other games) to the battle of spider ants, Borderlands will employ several team scenarios where everyone will need to understand their basic role in the mission for it to work out.
For the role-playing aspects, the skill tree is decisively in-depth with each of the four characters having three different routes in their skill tree to dedicate points. Brick, the heavy hitter of the bunch, has abilities to go berserk and attack all of his enemies with his fists. This fury allows for an advantageous position over his enemies as they aren’t able to keep up. In addition, other characters in the game include: Mordecai the sniper, Lilith the faze walker (invisibility/cloaking ability), and Roland the all-around solider class that can heal his teammates.
The world of Pandora is a huge open space to explore and look for that “ultimate loot” that the four main characters are in search for. With over 160 missions and three big zones to traverse, the replay value Borderlands is being estimated to being up to 50-60 hours to complete everything in the game. If you are the type that wants to rush through everything, it has been said that you could finish it like any other normal shooter.
Launching at the tail end of 2009, Borderlands is set to release simultaneously for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC.