The king of loot shooters is finally back!
It feels good to say that as it seems like the series hasn’t had an actual new release in a very long time. In fact, The Handsome Collection (Borderlands 2 and The Pre-Sequel) has been released (and continues to be released) on nearly every platform under the sun. It was time for a new game and Gearbox finally delivered…well, a trailer at least.
The official news came at PAX East, an event held annually in Boston, Massachusetts and one that I regularly attend. Knowing that Gearbox had a lot to share, I made it a priority to be in the crowd that day. For my troubles and everyone else’s, we all got a pretty cool Borderlands psycho mask. It was like a badge of honor and for the rest of the day, this would be how we recognized each other out on the show floor.
With about 3,000 people stuffed into the main theatre, Randy Pitchford took to the stage to kick things off. Love him or hate him, there’s no denying that Pitchford is super charismatic and really knows how to work the crowd. He set the stage for what was to come and eventually gave way to Steve Gibson who runs the Gearbox Publishing arm.
We got some pretty cool announcements and reveals like Bulletstorm coming to the Switch, an impressive looking Risk of Rain 2, a new game from the TinyBuild team, new DLC for We Happy Few, and more.
Honestly, though, Gearbox knew why everyone was there so the scene shifted back to the Borderlands franchise. The VR game was up first, and while I’m not into VR at all, I’m impressed with how much the team listens and responds to feedback. Not only did they just add support for the PS Aim device(a community request) , but the team is also in the process of reworking all of the DLC from the core game and will be added to the VR version this summer for free. Not bad!
With a slightly older Tiny Tina confirmed for the next Borderlands, Pitchford came out to introduce a new tabletop game called Tiny Tina’s Robot Tea Party through a magic trick. Again, Pitchford oozes charm on stage, especially when doing magic, so I didn’t mind this segment one bit. He invited two members of the audience up on stage, and each gave them a sealed package of the game. He also had a wrapped gift for one of them as well as it was their birthday, but that was put away for the time being. Opening one of the game boxes, he had the first person sign their name on a random card they picked form the deck, then had the second person open the other box and count 47 cards out. Unfortunately, that deck did not have the signed card as we all expected. However, he brought back the wrapped gift and had the second person open it, with the signed card inside. Pretty nifty trick. Oh, and the tabletop game sounds interesting as well, having players try to be the first person to assemble a CL4P-TP robot before others can.
From there they confirmed the original Borderlands was getting the long-awaited Remaster/Game of the Year edition, though the trailer they prepared for it completely borked out each time they attempted to play it. Hilariously, the trailer broke each time Marcus began saying “So you want to hear a story…”
Instead, developers at Gearbox took to the stage to discuss some of the improvements like 4K support, quality of life changes, a remade lost boss fight, etc etc. The Handsome Collection is also getting an Ultra HD update for free on April 3.
With all of that out of the way, it was time. Pitchford hyped the crowd then dropped the new trailer on us. Unfortunately, technical glitches again reared up with a few stutters at the beginning. It didn’t matter, the crowd went nuts. Pitchford came out after and tried to play the trailer again, only to see the same stuttering issues. You could tell he wasn’t pleased, especially considering that the team had been plugging away on this for 5 years only to not be able to reveal it in the way the studio had hoped. Thankfully, the issues were eventually resolved and the trailer played again in all its glory.
While no information was given about the game or even a release date, the trailer was still very impressive. Borderlands 3 is like the melting pot for every game in the franchise so far. Yes, that even includes the excellent spin-off series Tales from the Borderlands. So many characters are being pulled into this game from Rhys and Vaugh, Sir Hammerlock, Ellie, Lilith, Mordecai, Brick, Tiny Tina, Moxxi, Tannis, and more. The trailer also introduced the four new vault hunters and the villain which is actually a pair of twins this time around. Either way, seeing Borderlands back is enough for me.
Word on the streets is that more news will be available in a few days on April 3. I don’t think that’ll include an actual release date, probably more of a release window. My guess is we’ll get to see the 4 vault hunters in action, their skills, and perhaps learn a bit more about the twins. Either way, I’m excited to see what’s new. I’m thrilled this series is back. It’s been way too long.