does Borderlands 3 get good?

DigDog

Lifer
Jun 3, 2011
10,918
807
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..or is it all just made of suck ?

I'm currently on level 12 and i had to resist the urge to uninstall the game.

I've previously played B1 and B2 and had a decent amount of fun, despite the obvious shortcomings of the title - bullet-sponge enemies, visual diarrhea, enemies spam, and generally the fact that it's not really challenging gameplay - but the quirky characters made up for it, and the endless easter eggs, weird touches such as screaming guns, and a reasonably entertaining story.

But now im just so bored. First off, WHY WHY why do unskippable scenes still exist. I hate also the constant voiceovers; i just want to shoot some things, please give me a break - your blah blah isn't even relevant to the gameplay. And, it's not even good. I can take as much Tiny Tina as you care to give, but i fill up quick on Generic Protagonist n1 and Generic Sidekick n2.

Also, jesus, these guns are horrible. HOOOOOrrible. I run out of every ammo (despite buying upgrades) in every fight - and it's not my aim that sucks, it's just that the low damage of teh weapons compared to the HP of the enemies .. and obviously, 3-4 reloads per enemy. OH JOY.
 

EXCellR8

Diamond Member
Sep 1, 2010
3,693
650
126
As a mostly solo player I occasionally found myself getting bored with it too, but I think my gunner build sort of helped level out the experience; made me want to keep playing. In order to make the game challenging for myself, I'd typically get myself way in over my head, do as much damage on foot as I could, and then mech up and try to clean house. It didn't work 100% of the time but honestly I didn't have to do a lot of retreating. I tried to carry a variety of arms, some for long and medium ranges, and good shield and grenade mods. You can get some pretty good firefights going

The game certainly doesn't feel as original as the first two, but overall I still enjoyed the experience. The last couple of worlds you visit are more fun than the Pandora 'lite' map and the city one. There are also some more demanding challenges that you can discover which get pretty hard. Borderlands was never a game I took very seriously, and didn't spend more than a couple of hours with at a time.
 

aigomorla

Cases and Cooling Mod PC Gaming Mod Elite Member
Super Moderator
Sep 28, 2005
18,049
851
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If you like end loot grinding, and ramping up the bullet sponge option, then yeah, it gets better.
If those aren't your tea, then the story is sort of fun and interesting, but let me say this without spoiling you much....

AVA KILLS THE GAME YOU REALLY WANT TO STRANGLE HER AND SHOVE HER OUT THE AIR LOCK
 
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shortylickens

No Lifer
Jul 15, 2003
75,312
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I never liked any of them. Too much inventory management for a dumb shooter.
Doom is a dumb shooter but they figured out a way to make it fun.
 

Zenoth

Diamond Member
Jan 29, 2005
5,046
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I finished it once, couldn't care enough to revisit it after that. I finished it with Flak (the alien guy with the different pets).

I find BL2 to be vastly superior to BL3. I did, however, dig the loot in BL3. Mostly that some loot in later (character) levels and high difficulty settings start to have more interesting stats (finally), but the best part in my book was that weapons stats now can spawn with added points to specific skills. So the potential in build variety is higher in BL3 compared to BL1 or BL2.

But that's it. That's the only positive part of BL3 for me. I didn't like the soundtrack (it's nothing compared to BL2's), didn't like the majority of the characters even including returning BL2 ones. I found Lilith to be very boring in this one (not that she was the best in BL2 but she had more 'punch' and sass to her character there than she does in BL3). Ironically enough, I did like Tannis in BL3 about as much as I did in BL2, very well done character and voiced by the same VA voicing Lilith (Colleen Clinkenbeard ). As a fan of BL2's Tiny Tina I found her to be less memorable in BL3 (I absolutely loved her in her DLC for BL2, amazing work there especially the writing and voice acting). The new young girl (can't even recall her name) that pops up in the story alongside Maya at some point irked me to quite a high level all the way until the end. The "antagonists" twins are a miserable pair that serve more like a cringe comedy duo than 'villains' would. It does "fit" their character to a degree (I.E. they're young, immature, very destabilized kids and act impulsively) but it just wasn't my cup of tea. I mean c'mon, a pair of Sci-Fi streamers are the villains. Like "don't forget to like and subscribe folks!". No. Sorry, but no.

The enemies were boring for the most part, as well. The A.I. is a bit better but ironically it ain't that necessary in this type of game (but it's welcome for some types in particular), even though I could consider it as a minor plus on the side of the bad things in this game. The maps, in particular, or rather their setting and the general environment I thought were pretty boring as well. It's not that they were not well-made, per se. In terms of assets quality, texturing, overall graphics fidelity it's there. It's just that I didn't get 'immersed' much in this game's environments. There were some few exceptions here and there though, some maps were alright; but in general they bored me, especially the first one and the swamp map with the dinosaurs (or whatever those animal names are).

Now, to answer the original question of "does it get better"?

That's obviously very subjective but for me at least the story did have at one particular spot late in the game its sort of semi 'redemption' moment. I do say "semi", because it's very brief but I did like it.

Just in case this may be spoilers territory. So for me that positive part of the story was essentially Typhon DeLeon, the 'First Vault Hunter'. I'm not sure what's the general consensus on him by the community but I for one thought that he was the best new character in the franchise so far. The voice acting is perfect for him, the writing is very good, his actual story (once more is revealed as you learn more of him from his recordings, and himself later on) is actually pretty good. And near the end when I couldn't care less anymore about those two twins and had already turned my brain off for doing whatever it is I was doing in the story just to get done with it this Typhon DeLeon guy gets in the story and turns it around enough for me to wake up again and mentally go "ZZZZzzzZzzz--hu-mmm-oh OH yeah sorry I'm here! I'm here! So, where are we now?". I'm not sure what 'clicked' but he's just intelligently made for the story. The big problems are two fold with him, however: 1) His presence (in person) in the game is WAY too brief for how good he was made, and 2) I could sort of see where he would end in the story but I almost wished there was room for more of his character in a future game or a DLC but... of course... he was just there to help move the story along to the next step, a mere tool.

Now when it comes to pure gameplay alone outside of the story... it depends on a few things. In general, for a BL game it's about two things: Loot, and Playable Characters and what they do and what's their gimmick. For me, even though I do find BL3's loot overall more 'refined' and providing greater build variety potential, the Characters are extraordinarily boring this time around. All of them. The least of which I picked up to finish the game once and that was it. I greatly miss Axton and Gaige from BL2, they were my favorites and basically both were the main reasons why I finished BL2 about 7 times so far; 3 times for each of them, and one time with Zer0. So for BL3 I decided ultimately to stick with Flak and just force myself through the story. Even though I wouldn't go as far as to say that I "enjoyed" Flak, he did have a pet (three choices too) and offered me some respite during fights thanks to the pet actually doing things on his own with its proper A.I. to fight and help me. That's also why I loved Axton in BL2 with the turrets (up to 2 of them with the skills) and Gaige with her awesome robot that moves around and also does things on his own without the need to aim at specific targets or command him to do anything specific if you don't feel like it.

In the end that's the most lacking aspect in gameplay for me in BL3, no passives that help much, no "companion" style tool to help much (outside of Flak's pet) by your side, and coupled with mostly boring maps, cringe antagonists and a story that I couldn't care about and was terribly paced on top of it... yeah, but... no I suppose that the final answer should be that the game "didn't get better" overall, save for some very specific and isolated 'better parts' near the end, it wasn't enough to exclaim at any point something like "Finally! I'm actually starting to really like this game now!". Nope. I didn't want BL3 to end up like this for me but it did. Then again, no biggie, I still have BL2 which is a masterpiece in comparison to BL3 in my book.

Now I don't "hate" this game. On its own, I guess, it's 'alright'. I'd still give it something like a 6.5/10, it's passable for one playthrough; then move along and forget. It's what it did for me anyway.
 

Stg-Flame

Platinum Member
Mar 10, 2007
2,739
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Collectively between all two and a half other Borderlands games (not counting the TellTale series), I have over 4,500 hours logged. I've played maybe one hour of that with other people so needless to say, I'm a bit of a fan. That being said, I knew I was going to wait until it hit Steam (screw Tencent) and I'll likely wait until I have a new PC just to experience it properly, but I have watched some gameplay videos from friends and I was just really unimpressed (and I stayed away from all gameplay footage prior so my expectations were already low to begin with). I think they had a great thing with the first game and they just expanded so perfectly upon it with the second game, Randy kinda ran out of ideas and didn't know where to take the series which is likely why he let 2K make that TPS abomination. Hopefully by the time I get around to building a new setup, the game will have been polished a few times.
 

DigDog

Lifer
Jun 3, 2011
10,918
807
126
I think they had a great thing with the first game and they just expanded so perfectly upon it with the second game, Randy kinda ran out of ideas and didn't know where to take the series which is likely why he let 2K make that TPS abomination. Hopefully by the time I get around to building a new setup, the game will have been polished a few times.
That makes sense.
Meanwhile i've found a hack to skip the intro scene, (which is nearly half an hour long) and start a new game because i really wasn't feeling the Siren character.
 

Ajay

Diamond Member
Jan 8, 2001
6,982
2,308
136
It's a decent dopamine blast most of the time. There are some really tedious moments - running stupid errands to level up. A couple of bosses at higher levels that have a bazillion hit point that just take too long to kill. I've found it to be overall pretty fun as an RPG/Shooter. Like @shortylickens mentioned, inventory management is a pain, at least the game pauses while you switch out weapons to take out a particular foe.
 

sandorski

No Lifer
Oct 10, 1999
67,438
2,607
126
Loved the first one, never could play beyond the first hour on the second before losing interest. I think I just got all I needed with the first.
 

zinfamous

No Lifer
Jul 12, 2006
101,094
15,213
136
I love it. I preferred the first two, especially the first, but at least with this one, all vault hunters are pretty good at this point. It wasn't that way early on, but they all seem decently balanced, instead of just Amara breaking everything and everyone else trying to play catch up, about 10 places behind.

But--yes, the voice overs are way more annoying in this one than any other. I get tired of the endless chatter and just wish you could shut them down--especially after you've gone through everything before (you can skip cutscenes....but only on additional playthroughs).

I haven't played it in about a month though, so I haven't even tried the current seasonal event, which is supposedly really great. I have burned out twice already with this game. In some ways, I think the main story is actually just too long.

But I still like the formula in these games. I'm glad it hasn't changed all that much, and at least they removed the bullet sponginess that you got wtih UVHM in BL2. ...okay, maybe the new versions of Mayhem added that back in, but again, I haven't tried the update yet.

I still like that all classes are now viable. Moze was good early on with a rather broken mechanic that was ..."fixed" and pissed people off, but she's actually way better now across several styles, not just stupidly tossing infinite grenades. Her action skill actually works now, which is silly that her entire character design--summoning a playable mech--was completely useless for nearly half a year. Amara is still godly and essentially unkillable when you trick her out, but Moze is way up there with damage, as well as Flak. ...Zane doesn't outright suck like he used to.
 

Ajay

Diamond Member
Jan 8, 2001
6,982
2,308
136
I get tired of the endless chatter and just wish you could shut them down
OMG THIS! Freaking COV chatter bots do drive me crazy. I've wasted hours just turning off speakers to get them to shut up!
 

zinfamous

No Lifer
Jul 12, 2006
101,094
15,213
136
OMG THIS! Freaking COV chatter bots do drive me crazy. I've wasted hours just turning off speakers to get them to shut up!
Yeah, it's definitely worse with the twins, but it's a problem throughout the game. All of the sidequest, or one-off story NPCs, just go on way way way too long over your voice com. I think Randy and his people jsut like themselves too much and refused to edit down any of the dialogue to make it tolerable from a gameplay perspective. It's just so much added noise. The game already has tons of noise and the obnoxious "we like hearing ourselves write" exposition is horribly annoying.

...I do play these games thoroughly, so I'm many playthroughs invested, which really just means grinding, so at that point I'm just playing my own music or pod casts or something over the dialogue. I do like to keep the sound effects up and bgd music, to some level, but all of that dialogue still creeps in (I still like hearing the VH quips as they murder things, so I never can control the dialogue that I want).


Another thing...this game is definitely made emptier without Scooter and Zed. Those were my favorite characters in the franchise.
 

aigomorla

Cases and Cooling Mod PC Gaming Mod Elite Member
Super Moderator
Sep 28, 2005
18,049
851
126
Sorry AVA is the queen when it comes to annoying.
 
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ondma

Golden Member
Mar 18, 2018
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It actually got *worse* after the introduction of Mayhem 2.0. Even normal mobs are now bullet sponges for 99% of the weapons in the higher levels of Mayhem. Only a very few weapons are viable in Mayhem 2.0, above level 5 or 6. Why bother with "billions of guns", when only a very few are viable in the endgame. Plus there are a lot of scaling issues with shields, grenades, etc.

Hopefully (supposedly) these issues will be addressed in patches soon. I am not counting on it though, as all Gearbox usually does in patches is nerf whatever few fun guns are left in the game.
 

Stg-Flame

Platinum Member
Mar 10, 2007
2,739
199
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Yeah, it's definitely worse with the twins, but it's a problem throughout the game. All of the sidequest, or one-off story NPCs, just go on way way way too long over your voice com. I think Randy and his people jsut like themselves too much and refused to edit down any of the dialogue to make it tolerable from a gameplay perspective. It's just so much added noise. The game already has tons of noise and the obnoxious "we like hearing ourselves write" exposition is horribly annoying.

...I do play these games thoroughly, so I'm many playthroughs invested, which really just means grinding, so at that point I'm just playing my own music or pod casts or something over the dialogue. I do like to keep the sound effects up and bgd music, to some level, but all of that dialogue still creeps in (I still like hearing the VH quips as they murder things, so I never can control the dialogue that I want).


Another thing...this game is definitely made emptier without Scooter and Zed. Those were my favorite characters in the franchise.
If you listen to any of the interviews with the BL2 cast, they frequently mention that most of the dialogue is unscripted and it's just them BSing and having fun. If I remember right, Randy said that was one of his biggest problems with the second game is that he had so much great dialogue and he didn't know how to cut it down properly. I also recall someone mentioned (joked?) that Randy's love for all the characters and dialogue is what prompted the major DLCs. He wanted to flesh out the characters more and had a ton of unused dialogue/one-liners he wanted to put in the game.
 

TidusZ

Golden Member
Nov 13, 2007
1,767
1
81
I got to around level 14 and was so sick of all the cutscenes.. just let me clear dungeons and get loot and stop forcing story :/

I uninstalled
 

zinfamous

No Lifer
Jul 12, 2006
101,094
15,213
136
It actually got *worse* after the introduction of Mayhem 2.0. Even normal mobs are now bullet sponges for 99% of the weapons in the higher levels of Mayhem. Only a very few weapons are viable in Mayhem 2.0, above level 5 or 6. Why bother with "billions of guns", when only a very few are viable in the endgame. Plus there are a lot of scaling issues with shields, grenades, etc.

Hopefully (supposedly) these issues will be addressed in patches soon. I am not counting on it though, as all Gearbox usually does in patches is nerf whatever few fun guns are left in the game.
yes, I did read this when the patch landed, after a couple of days. One of the reasons I haven't really jumped into that. I don't want to spend time replacing gear or trying new stuff if the loot tables are currently broken, especially if some later patch might not fix what you already have in your bags.

Though, I do parse through some of the comments on the forums, because there is often this kind of quick rage about how the specific thing they don't like isn't working, but I do see plenty of people getting along just fine with thoroughly viable playstyles, across characters, that don't have much problem playing through mayhem levels. ....but this is always the case with these games, haha.

Also, while Gearbox does indeed have a long history of breaking more things that the community likes than they do fixing them/adding new content, I'd also just rather wait because I don't expect these companies to be at 100% these days. It kinda boggles my mind how angry the internet people get over this, with zero appreciation for the time the devs can actually devote to this work during an actual pandemic.
 

rstrohkirch

Golden Member
May 31, 2005
1,780
154
106
A friend and I played through the game together. He bought me a copy so we could. If I had to play solo I'm not sure I would have made it to the end. It's a much better experience playing co-op.
 

KentState

Diamond Member
Oct 19, 2001
7,799
179
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I put 85 hours into BL3 which I believe was two play throughs with the same character. For BL2 I took each character through twice and found that a more enjoyable experience. Graphically, it's better and there are some things that are improved, but like most modern day sequels, not enough changed.
 

UberNeuman

Lifer
Nov 4, 1999
16,939
3,069
126
..or is it all just made of suck ?

I'm currently on level 12 and i had to resist the urge to uninstall the game.

I've previously played B1 and B2 and had a decent amount of fun, despite the obvious shortcomings of the title - bullet-sponge enemies, visual diarrhea, enemies spam, and generally the fact that it's not really challenging gameplay - but the quirky characters made up for it, and the endless easter eggs, weird touches such as screaming guns, and a reasonably entertaining story.

But now im just so bored. First off, WHY WHY why do unskippable scenes still exist. I hate also the constant voiceovers; i just want to shoot some things, please give me a break - your blah blah isn't even relevant to the gameplay. And, it's not even good. I can take as much Tiny Tina as you care to give, but i fill up quick on Generic Protagonist n1 and Generic Sidekick n2.

Also, jesus, these guns are horrible. HOOOOOrrible. I run out of every ammo (despite buying upgrades) in every fight - and it's not my aim that sucks, it's just that the low damage of teh weapons compared to the HP of the enemies .. and obviously, 3-4 reloads per enemy. OH JOY.
Git gud.
 

Magic Carpet

Diamond Member
Oct 2, 2011
3,241
58
91
I put 85 hours into BL3 which I believe was two play throughs with the same character. For BL2 I took each character through twice and found that a more enjoyable experience. Graphically, it's better and there are some things that are improved, but like most modern day sequels, not enough changed.
About the same here, did one playthrough with Flak and that was it. Didn't like hopping between planets & that claustrophobic ship, called Sanctuary 3. Not happy about slag removed, too. Inventory/map too much hassle really. I might re-visit BL3 in a year, though.
 

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