As far as I am concerned the best DLC from Borderlands 2 was Tiny Tina’s Assault on Dragon Keep, that is a hill I am prepared to die on, leave me there, know it was worth it.
It was such an epic and funny breath of fresh air in what was already an epic game and game series, so when I saw she was getting her OWN game, I was instantly sold. You can see our first play here.
This game is fecking hecking awesome.
That’s it, that’s the review.. ha.. well not quite but it could be.
Anyone who knows me knows that I am the MOST critical of AAA games as they come with such a hefty price tag – £59.99 non-refundable and no demo is a big deal for a lot of people in the current climate, but I trust 2k and we have loved Borderlands SO MUCH in house Shiney that we had to get this.
The first play had 2 hours sail by and the first thing we all seemed to fall in love with was the character creation. It is almost like doing a proper character sheet from DnD, its nerdgasmingly perfect in that regard (I can make up words, Shakespeare did it, shut up).
Not only do you customise the physical characteristics of your lil newbie (AND CHOOSE PRONOUNS!!) but you get to sort out your base states based on the class you have chosen. Which in itself was perfect and the community was demanding that the character maker was a standalone free release to tempt you in (like Saints Row did).
You can choose from Brr-Zerker (not unlike the character I currently play in out Pf2 DnD game), big on melee & frost damage so for this character you would want high strength. It also comes with a unique class feat called Rage of the Ancients and action skills called Dread Wind (which my Barbarian in PF2 literally does) and Feral surge.
I opted for the Clawbringer, as I wanted my little fire breathing Wyvern companion and because I really like the action skills of Cleaning flames and Storm Dragons judgment. Mine is all about the fire and the flames and I love it. I also made mine look very Tabaxi because cats…
Duck is currently loving the world of Graveborn, which is a massive departure from his usual IRL DnD first choice of Bard. He gets a demi-lich companion as his class feat (which is weird and floats around being like a watered down version of Skeletor. The actions skills are called dire sacrifice and reaper of bones (he’s a necromancer, can you tell?) Its all about using their own and then leeching others health to be tanky as fuck in combat. Its certainly cleared encounters fast between the two of us.
I can see myself replaying the game as a Spellshot, the class feat of spellweaving makes more more spell casting and I love being a caster. The action skills are called Ambi-hextrous and polymorph which is about getting extra spells for yourself and your party, noice.
The Spore Warden comes with a little mushroom companion as its class feat (and who doesn’t love a little magic mushroom?) who deals poison damage (which is bad if you have low con – like a lot of NPCs do). The actions skills are Barrage and blizzard, with an etheral bow hitting with 7 arrows and a forst cyclone dealing frost damage over time. Its like magic missile on steroids (you can also get MMs from certain weapons). I have actually added this class as my secondary one so now I have two companions!!
The sixth and final class is the Stabbomancer, I think this one is fairly self explanatory. The class feat is all about upping the chance of landing a crit for maximum damage output with dirty fighting. The action skills are ghost blade and from the shadows, showing that this is the essential rouge of the party with sneaky stabbing and focus on close combat melee damage. I have never played a rouge in DnD and it doesn’t really appeal to me but if this is your jam you will love it.
Jesus this is a long review and I am not even on to game play yet. You still with me?
The voice acting this game is massive A-list and its brilliant. Of course we have Ashly Burch coming back as the shrill and excitable Tina, but we also have Will Arnett, Adam Sandberg and Wanda Skyes making up the party and the main big bad. I can almost imagine a scenario where this is actually a Brooklyn 99 spin off where they try DnD and I am just waiting for a Terry Cruise Cameo or Amy to wander in and have a fit because the player board is so messy.
This brings us onto the other nice feature of this game (but for my community opinion was mixed) about the third person mode where you are essentially on the board wandering around with a bobble headed version of yourself in order to move from one world to the next. Within this third person place there are also side quests and surprise encounters that have to be resolved before you can move on. A feature that has grown on Duck – as has hunting D20’s. At the time of writing this we have only rolled one 20 and were a little let down with the loot but there are so many to find and roll that I remain hopeful for some snacky loot.
The main story is great fun, I won’t spoil it too much but all I can say is that magic missiles got a SERIOUS upgrade at the point we are at right now! We keep getting side tracked with the side quests which all hilariously brilliant and parody things like Star Wars, the Smurfs, the Sword in the stone AND even a battle of the bands – as well as some just plain weird (polka dot goblins…).
Game play will be easy and familiar to any fan of the Borderlands series with guns and upgrades all being the same, essentially. The only difference is that grenades are now your spells and special abilities with the upgrade trees focusing on improving skills and eventually adding a second class ability. I am about to hit level 20 as write this and I feel very epic, like you would in a real DnD campaign.
Now to the downside because yes, sadly, there is one.
The SHiFT match making has been quite unreliable since the game released and as Duck and I want to complete the game together it has meant we have had to take several pauses when match making has gone down. This is unhappy making but with no PS4 patches released for the game since its came out on the 25th its clear that this game unlike most recent AAA we have played is just better all round.
4.5 out of 5
Its a brilliant game, from the amazingly detailed and thoughtful character creation to the fun graphics and brilliant voice acting. The main story is great and the side quests add both value and fun to overall game play, which itself is very Borderlands in its familiarity. The only thing stopping this being a perfect review is the issues with SHiFT causing multiplayer issues. Aside from that if you are already a fan of the BL world, get this game, and if you are unfamiliar with it but love Dungeons and Dragons – get this game! Its time for some goddamn BONKERS AND BADASSES BEYBEY!
Writer/fan girl side note:
This is how much I love this game, it’s my freaking background now on my PlayStation – an honour previously held by the BL2 Tina DLC because of rainbows and sheer fucking epic awesomeness. House Shiney loves this game and whilst it is only March, I think we have a top 3 contender for Shiney Game of the year (if not first place to be honest).