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There’s a tempering of expectation of sorts when it comes to Gearbox and 2K Games’ Borderlands franchise that you know what you’re getting from the start and for many, that’s enough, but let’s not pretend this title will ever reinvent the wheel when it comes to first-person shooters. The humor of the game is sort of an acquired taste like how there will always be the loyal base that follows The Simpsons and South Park everywhere it goes so it never gets canceled. You get the typical character depth or lack thereof from previous titles reminiscent of the late ’90s and 2000s first-person shooters.
The main villains in Borderlands 3 are the Calypso Twins, who have about as much range as villains as the taunting Frenchman guard in Monty Python and the Holy Grail as they perpetually remind you how much you suck. The single-player campaign has enough depth to forage on without getting too distracting, but it would be nice if the dialogue can be skipped. Obviously, you want to explore your surroundings every which way for money to purchase upgrades and the ammo is plentiful enough around that you hardly need to purchase to restock.
As per previous games, you have the ability to customize your character’s abilities with their own tech trees. The character types are about the same with the Amara, the Siren, Moze, the Gunner/mech fighter, FL4K The Beastmaster and Zane Flynt, the operative. Most of the characters are self-explanatory with Amara for those who love blending magic with their gun-fu, Moze for mech-type fighting and firepower, FL4K if you want to use pets, and Zane if you want to use spy-tech like clones and specialized shielding. The driving is as fluid as ever.
The game controls as well as its predecessors. I had to cut down on settings, because of the initial choppy framerate, which according to Gearbox will be rectified for the PC edition soon. The occasional slowdown wasn’t as bad as Bioware’s Anthem at launch. Otherwise, Borderlands 3 checked all the boxes for expectations of the series, but it didn’t add anything new to the table. Once you get through the single-player mode, the real meat of the fun is in multiplayer.