Borderlands 2 - Review

Author: Gianluca "Ualone" Loggia
Date: 2020-07-30 19:50:30
Released three years ago, the first Borderlands was one of the most surprising games of the current generation of consoles. For its ability to amalgamate in an almost magical way two genres usually very distant from each other: that of subjective shooters and that of role-playing games. But also for a respectable general quality level. That aroused amazement, yes, and not a little. Also because, let's remember one thing: Gearbox, who were they? Before Borderlands, the answer is (was) distinctly "boh". Only a hipster in the world of video games would have the courage to say: “Eh, but I knew them, I played their Half-Life expansions, very valid (among other things, I played them before Half-Life itself came out, which incidentally I find very mainstream), and I also tried the various Brothers in Arms, not bad, yes. With Borderlands they got a little lost, come on, marketed. I won't play 2 ". And you don't know you're lost, man.

Borderlands 2 does a very smart thing: it realizes that it is the sequel to a great piece of game and it clings strongly to the winning features of its predecessor, trying not to spoil anything that the videogame gourmets have appreciated three years ago . The graphic style, to begin with. That cute cartoon face (stuck to an excellent rearrangement of the Unreal Engine 3) is still all there. And it succeeds, if possible even more clearly, in an enterprise that - judging from what you see in other games - must be really difficult: to present a post-apocalyptic world ... with colors! Nothing gray of death. Not at all costs, at least. The world is in ruins, genetic mutations are on the agenda, deserts are wasted. Yet, oh, red, green and yellow are still visible. Even blue doesn't seem to be affected too much by toxic gases.

Even the game, in essence, has remained the same. A truly incredible mixture of role-playing and subjective shooter. A somewhat simplified World of Warcraft filled with firearms. The skeleton totally based on the quests (main and secondary, with a lot of them) is not the only thing that the Gearbox saga has borrowed from the giant of Blizzard. Even the talent trees with which the characters are built, as they rise in level, are deadly inspired by the most famous MMORPG of all time (which in the meantime, however, the talent assignment system has upset it). Even the colors that indicate the rarity and effectiveness of the weapons are the same: white is useless, with green one begins to reason, blue is good, purple and maybe orange are the ones to aim for. But the fact is this: if something works, oh, it works. Who cares who copies who, as they always say at Apple (or perhaps somewhere else, but a lot, in fact, who cares). And Borderlands 2, needless to say, works. Exactly how its predecessor worked. In fact, a little better.

All at attention in front of the work done by Gearbox.

If there was one thing, in fact, of which someone (not all, eh, someone) had complained a little about the first Borderlands, this was the script. The feeling could have been that of finding oneself to grind quests only to accumulate experience points, level up and obtain more and more powerful weapons, in order to better face even more difficult quests, and repeat the process practically indefinitely. Which, let's face it, putting it this way doesn't sound bad. And in fact it wasn't bad at all. So what? And so nothing, the story was not that great anyway. Well, the good news is that in Borderlands 2 the script and the dialogues are absolutely among the strengths of the game. But also the ways and rhythms with which the main story and the many secondary stories are proposed is truly remarkable. It is not possible to step into a quest without enjoying a written dialogue, written well. Do you have to collect five different pieces to put the pump motor together? Well. With each piece collected, the non-player character who has entrusted the task to the player will make himself heard with a joke, an encouragement, a comment of some kind. And maybe it will be interrupted by another character who will be ironic about everything. The more things you do, the more Pandora (the planet on which everything takes place) comes to life in the eyes (and ears) of the player, with grotesque anecdotes and completely insane background, which on more than one occasion manage to snatch a smile, if not a convinced laugh. And for sure they become attached to a world that results, as you move forward in the game, very well hatched.