Borderlands: The Handsome Collection
Developed by Gearbox Software, Armature Studio & Iron Galaxy Studios
Published by 2K Games
*Please Note: This Review is of the PlayStation 4 Version*
I’ll be covering both of the stories in this review, because Borderlands has never really been about the story plus they do really play off of each other considering that the events of Pre-Sequel leads into Borderlands 2.
So I’ll start with Pre- Sequel which covers the rise of Handsome Jack and his change into the tyrannical villain that we all love, basically the game follows Jack trying to build up a Robot army and trying to find a Vault or some such, I honestly don’t really remember how the story really goes, I was more interested in the gameplay instead of the story, basically when it comes to the story, the best thing I can really comment on is how Jack changes over the course of the game, it’s pretty cool to see how one of the best villains of all times was created.
Borderlands 2 is pretty much more of the same, story once again isn’t this games strong point, but I have played this game more than Pre-Sequel so I can remember it a lot better, basically the story is about trying to take down the tyrannical Hyperion corporation’s leader Handsome Jack who has been trying to once again find a vault and by doing so he has been slaughtering the people of Pandora using his Mech army.
So as I have said the stories aren’t too great in these games, but I will say that both games do have a pretty great cast of characters, Moxxi, Scooter, Claptrap and of course Handsome Jack himself are fantastic characters and very memorable, especially Jack, who as I said earlier is a definite contender for greatest villain of all time.
Borderlands has a pretty cool style of gameplay, on the surface it is a basic first person shooter but Borderlands is also an RPG game, each character has their own set of skills and upgrades which you can get by gaining experience through killing enemies and finishing missions.
The main meat of Borderlands is of course…The guns, this game has a metric crap load of guns, and nearly all of them are different, these differences can be anything from doing lighting damage or fire damage to throwing the gun and having it explode to reload it (One of my favourites), changing your guns is one of the best parts of the game, every time you get a new gun that kicks even more ass than your current one is a great feeling to get, it’s simply addicting and I will always love that element of the game.
Both Borderlands 2 and The Pre-Sequel don’t really play that differently, honestly I’d say the only differences they have are the use of an 02 gauge in Pre-Sequel and the different characters. The 02 gauge doesn’t really play that much of a difference in the game honestly, apart from the very beginning I actually completely forgot about it.
So overall Borderlands is a pretty fun FPS game with some nice RPG elements and a nice looting system, I’ll say that the game pretty much should be played in Co-op, it really makes the experience a lot more enjoyable.
Borderlands doesn’t have that great of a soundtrack to be honest except for maybe the opening cut scenes, really whenever music does play it gets drowned out by the sounds of gunfire and explosions, and speaking of gunfire and explosions, I really think this game needs some work done with the sound effects, I just feel that the guns simply don’t sound that great, I hope that in the future Borderlands games they really improve the sound effects and make them sound a lot more realistic.
The voice acting in both games is pretty much superb, every voice actor delivers their lines perfectly and make nearly every line somehow sound hilarious, mainly helped due to both games excellent writing, the star of both games is most definitely the voice of Claptrap (David Eddings), he always delivers his lines with great enthusiasm and even manages to do Claptraps voice with an Australian accent in Pre-Sequel.
Borderlands graphical style is a Cel-shaded comical style, it does make the game certainly look unique over all the realistic similar looking FPS games that are out nowadays but simply technical speaking Borderlands doesn’t really look that great, especially now that it is on Next-Gen consoles, I (and Matt who played Co-op with me) didn’t notice any real graphical changes at all in this version, the only thing I can really say that was different is that the frame rate for me was a little better and didn’t drop as much, although it did drop a few times still.
So yeah, really don’t expect the best visuals in this game but I personally do like this games style since it does set it apart from other games.
You could get a pretty good bit of time out of these games, depending on how much you decide to do side missions I’d say these games could both range from about 20-40 hours, which is pretty great, plus both games come with all the DLC which includes the extra characters so that could easily add another 10 hours or so to the games, I should also advise anyone to play this game in Co-op because it highly improves the experience when played with friends.
As per usual both games have a set of Trophies/Achievements to acquire.
Overall you’ll get quite a good bit of content in these games, so if you want a FPS game that you can sink your teeth into, this would be a pretty good choice.
So as a whole I’d say Borderlands: The Handsome Collection is a pretty good bundle to get, especially if you’re a fan of Borderlands or even if you simply want to get into the series, I think anyone should at least give Borderlands 2 a try, but I will say that Pre-Sequel is by far the weaker part of the bundle as it just really isn’t anywhere near as good as Borderlands 2.
Simply put, if you want to get a Fun Co-op FPS game to play with friends or if you wish to get into the Borderlands series, then I’d say this is the best place to start.
Score = 7.5/10
- Very fun addicting gameplay
- Fantastic cast of characters
- Great voice acting
- Lots of content included
- Borderlands 2
- Stories are very weak
- Soundtrack isn’t memorable at all
- Visuals are a bit dated
- Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel
Borderlands: The Handsome Collection is available now on PS4 and Xbox One. Thanks go to 2K for supplying the game & Assets used in this review. Be sure to let me know what you thought of the review in the comments section below and be sure to stay tuned to UGNN for all your gaming news and reviews and remember to follow us on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
Review By Jonnie Dixon