Borderlands Reviews

After a few early stragglers, we now have a massive wave of Borderlands reviews to bring to your attention.

We start off at IGN with a score of 8.8/10:
Gearbox's Borderlands is without a doubt a slick, satisfying hybrid title for those who know what to expect. If you're a shooter fan curious what the world of Pandora is all about, then you should know that this is a product built on a foundation of statistical progression, character customization, and one that holds item acquisition high above interesting quest structure and narrative. At the same time, it plays like a shooter, requiring twitch skills to dominate the droves of enemies that stand in between you and your search for a mysterious vault. With the opportunity for up to four to join together for co-operative play, four character classes, a dizzying array of firearms, around 20 or so hours of content for a single playthrough and the option to restart with stronger enemies and loot, there's plenty of content here. It's a thoroughly enjoyable journey that offers a steady stream of rewards that remains convenient and accessible. It's something action role-playing game fans looking for an experience more up-close and brutal than genre entries of the third-person variety should have a blast with, and one of the more memorable products of 2009.

The second is at 1UP with a score of "B+":
Call it a first-person Diablo, an evolution of Resistance 2's co-op mode, Monster Hunter for the west, or a party game for FPS gamers. Call it the best example of the transformative power of multiplayer. Whatever you designate it, Borderlands is a decent single-player FPS/RPG that simply becomes great -- when playing with others. Besides, sheer midget panic is something that has to be shared with friends.

The third is at TeamXbox with a score of 9/10:
No, Borderlands isn't perfect, but it's one of those games that transcends most of its faults. I'm also glad it got a face lift well enough ahead of the game's release, so it didn't just blend into the background. Borderlands is one of the year's most enjoyable games, and I highly recommend it even to those who may not like shooters or RPGs, because there's a lot to like from this interesting hybrid.

The fourth is at Destructoid with a score of 8.5/10:
With tons of weapons to find, a great co-op system, fantastic art, and a whole bunch of exploding bodies, Borderlands is worth your money. Even when I feel that the game is starting to get repetitive, there's something about it that keeps me playing. Even my plans to jump into the game for five minutes to grab screenshots would suddenly turn into hour long play sessions without me even realizing it, and even having done most of the quests twice, I still want to head back and try again with a new character class. Despite a few imperfections, the game is simply fun -- and at the end of the day, that's what really matters.

The fifth is at Planet Xbox 360 with a score of 8.6/10:
The campaign alone is very long and feels completely different depending on which of the four character types you choose to play with (allowing for lots of replayability). Complimenting all the action is a visual style reminiscence of the recent Prince Of Persia game, keeping the game graphics as close to the original concept art as possible. We really enjoyed the comic style look (think cell-shaded); with its bold black line edges and colorful inlay; it's always good to see developers looking for new and different art directions to take the graphics. Borderlands is being developed by Gearbox Software using the Unreal Engine 3 engine at the heart, but with many enhancements developed specifically for this game. Gearbox has been around for about ten years and are known for developing Half life expansions, the Brothers In Arms series and co-developing Halo: Combat Evolved ports. Borderlands is now in stores around the world with additional downloadable content already announced. Whether you're a FPS, RPG or racing fan, this is a must-play game and with multiple different gameplay types, it's guaranteed to keep you busy for an endless number of hours.

The sixth is at G4 with a score of 4/5:
Despite these issues, the game is incredibly fun and still offers a good amount of loot satisfaction for the treasure-monger in all of us. Above all else, the shooting is incredibly polished and would stand on its own in a game without randomized guns and RPG elements. Borderlands is meant to be played co-operatively and should not be enjoyed alone. Not everyone will rush to start their second-playthrough, but it's definitely worth playing at least once with a few buddies.

The seventh is at GamePro with a score of 4.5/5:
There's no doubt that Borderlands has its faults but everything that exists around those sticky spots is incredible. The fun I had with the rock-solid gunplay and extensive role-playing elements was considerably amplified by each additional player. Borderlands is an absolute blast that I'll go back to again and again, even if my friends aren't around to help out. Considering how great of a time I had in Pandora, though, I expect they'll be around for a while too.

The eighth is at Games Radar with a score of 8/10:
Borderlands is a very entertaining shooter and a rather bland RPG. It rewards dedication with new guns and new things to shoot at, which is all kinds of fun for players who enjoy MMO-style progression. But if its charm and depth hadn't been abandoned so quickly, it may have been absolutely brilliant.

The ninth is at MTV Multiplayer with no score:
"Borderlands" took me about 17 hours to complete on my first play through, bringing me to level 35. It was an extremely entertaining 17 hours, and I was eager to jump right in to the New Game + mode to take me the remaining 15 levels. And the variety of the different classes definitely encourages multiple playthroughs (especially with other, lower level friends). It's rare that a developer sets out to accomplish a goal, (in this case, "Diablo" with skill-based FPS gameplay) and hits it smack on the head by the end product. The folks at Gearbox did just that, making one of the strongest games to release this year.

The tenth is at Giant Bomb with a score of 4/5:
The structure of Borderlands makes it feel like an MMO game that doesn't require you to rely on groups of other players to enjoy. Though it's probably better when you're playing online with friends, playing alone is still perfectly fine. It's also one of those games that's so strong in parts that its shortcomings become almost glaring by comparison. As such, the game's barebones story, lackluster AI, and insufficient player trading options are real disappointments that prevent the game from reaching its full potential. But when you're frantically trying to stay alive while getting swarmed by an angry horde of gigantic spiderants, chances are you won't care much about that other stuff. Borderlands strongly succeeds where plenty of other Diablo-inspired games have failed miserably.

The eleventh is at AtomicGamer with a score of 92%:
It's easy to create a wishlist of features Gearbox probably could have added given enough time, but when I get in game, I forget about all that and instead find myself hunting down the the next epic gun, taking out multiple enemies with headshots, and enjoying the pop culture and video game references (everything from Diablo and Halo to Quentin Tarantino and Judd Apatow movies are in there). I found Borderlands to be pretty unique in that I was able to forget I was a critic and just enjoy its immensely fun shooter action. I think you'll agree that when you've got guns blazing from four players at once and loot is flying everywhere, Borderlands easily makes up for any perceived shortcomings.

And the twelfth is at Burn360 with no score:
The thing I like most about Borderlands was the art style. Midway through development the style was changed from a gritty realistic style to the final product which is a cell shaded masterpiece. On par with Afro Samurai, I think the game made a wise decision as the comparisons have already been flying between Borderlands and Fallout 3. The controls are spot on in this game and there certainly is alot of good in the game itself. Including the shooting aspects of the game. Guns and the aiming of these weapons are gonna be the meat and potatoes of the gameplay and this element is polished. There are some problems though that hold Borderlands back a little. Frame rate issues occur quite frequently. Not that they detract all that much from the beautiful graphics, but that issue is there. I think vehicle driving could have been handled a little better. Something just felt off, and since there are many times when the sheer distance of an objective will require you to go by vehicle, I think a little more attention could have been payed to this part of the game.