– With its distinctive hand-drawn cartoon style, Borderlands is an odd candidate for a remaster because it’s look is frankly hard to improve on. It looked great in 2009, and it still looks great nearly 10 years later as a slightly brighter experience with better, steadier frame rate and a few minor tweaks. That’s both good and somewhat disappointing. On the one hand, it reconfirms that Borderlands still looks and plays the part a decade later.
On the other, it means there’s little reason to return if you’ve already completed the first adventure on Pandora. (screaming) (explosion) – [Character] Ahh, my face, my face, ahh! – [Reviewer] Those with keen eyes may be able to see a difference, but switching between Ultra and High settings on PC seemed like a wash.
There is unfortunately no HDR support here, but consoles will have it, along with 4K on PS4 Pro and Xbox One X. That might add vibrancy to the environments, structures, characters, and weapons, but the graphical style didn’t necessary need a refresh anyway. Consoles do benefit from 60-frames-per-second gameplay though, and the PC version is a free upgrade for owners of the original.
As the cheeky Game of the Year Edition name suggests, this remaster includes all the downloadable content, some of which is great. It also has four-player split-screen co-op, up from the original’s two, at the cost of reduced frame rate. And of course, the main campaign still holds up, thanks to its solid variety of missions, engaging baddies, and a whole lot of still very funny Claptrap humor.
– [Claptrap] Open! Yes! Ow!
– [Reviewer] Other improvements have been made which help to modernize the original in some respects. First and foremost, the addition of the Borderlands 2 style mini-map is extremely welcome. Not having to pull up the full map in the menu to ensure you’re heading the right way makes a positive difference in the general flow of the missions. Inventory management is also better because you can mark weapons as junk and sell them in bulk at vending machines while locking them helps you avoid dropping or selling gear in a store that you wanted to hold on to. It’s also really nice to automatically pick up ammunition and money from the ground, though you still have to manually grab both from chests and lockers. The remaster also adds six new legendary weapons, but none of them dropped during the first 20-hour playthrough.
One big letdown is while Gearbox promised that the notoriously lame bullet sponge final boss had been updated to be a cooler and more challenging fight, the Destroyer is still pretty lame. After starting the final mission at the recommended level, it was even easier than before. The fight was over in less than a minute by simply aiming at its giant eye and ignoring its tentacles altogether. Perhaps the Destroyer is more challenging in the second playthrough, but the first is a pushover. There are a couple of other perks, such as the addition of shift code support, which gives anyone who’s played Borderlands 2 or the pre-sequel on current-gen consoles or PC 75 golden keys and two of the new weapons for Game of the Year Edition.
Plus, the four original Vault Hunters now have five different heads each to choose from. Even though you rarely get to see your own face, it’s a nice feature for co-op, and seeing Soldier with a handlebar mustache is pretty charming. – [Claptrap] See ya next time! Ha ha!
– [Reviewer] Borderlands: Game of the Year Edition polishes up a game that already looked great and played well, so the upgrade to 4K isn’t a dramatic transformation. Improvements to navigation and inventory management removes some of the tedious moments that originally slowed things down, but the changes to the already weak final boss fight make it significantly easier, which is the exact opposite of what it needed. Of course, Borderlands’ campaigns’ gameplay, humor, and charm hold up, which makes it a reliably good time, especially in co-op. For more on Borderlands, check out our graphics comparison and our breakdown of the secrets in the Borderlands 3 reveal trailer. And for everything else, stick with us here at https://mycasinoindex.com/game/tag/fantasy.