For those of you clamoring for more Borderlands, get ready for an exciting 2014 that is poised to deliver in spades. This past weekend at PAX East 2014 the public had it’s first in-depth look at the latest edition to the Borderlands franchise, Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel.
Borderlands: the Pre-Sequel takes place between the stories of Borderlands and Borderlands 2 and introduces four new playable characters including Athena, Wilhelm, Claptrap, and Nisha. All of these characters will be very familiar to fans of the franchise, including Clap Trap who has been a staple in the series and one of the main characters.
The story will follow Handsome Jack’s transition from being a beloved hero to a hated, evil villain. Handsome Jack has crashed the Hyperion space station into the moon and as his employee, you’re helping Jack fix it. The story will also explain why Elpis, Pandora’s Moon, looked significantly different in Borderlands 2 than in the first Borderlands. To top things off, the game with take place on the moon complete with low-gravity, new moves, guns, elementals, oxygen kits and lasers.
Athena, the Gladiator is one of the newly introduced playable characters. Athena’s ability is the kinetic aspis which she can pull out, like a force field, to absorb damage and then throw her magnetic shield at enemies (think Captain America) to discharge the absorbed damage. What about when she’s in multi-player mode? Friends can unload damage upon her before a fight, arming her with like a nuke ready for battle.
Nisha is expected to be a melee-centric character.
Although Wilheim’s ability was not described in-depth but apparently players will see his transformation from human to a robotic version of himself.
Claptrap is the character you either love or hate. I found him wildly entertaining in Borderlands 2, but would a playable ClapTrap be annoying? Gearbox and 2K Australia are aware of this concer and judging from their comments they seem to embrace it; “Some people will love Claptrap. Some people will hate Claptrap, as it’s always been,” says Armstrong. “We would not be surprised to see – not to get too deep into what Claptrap is or how he works – but we fully expect to see servers that are called ‘No Claptraps Allowed,’ where if you join as a Claptrap, you get kicked. We’re okay with that.”
According to Matt Armstrong, Borderlands franchise director at Gearbox, part of the reason is that Borderlands 2 just can’t accommodate any more DLC. “Every time you make a new content or DLC for a game, it takes up more memory than the original game,” he says. “So every new weapon, every new gear, every new class, all that stuff takes up memory. We simply ran out.” As for why Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel won’t be appearing on Xbox One and PlayStation 4, Armstrong says the Borderlands audience is still on Xbox 360, PS3 and PC. “The install base [on Xbox One and PS4] isn’t quite there yet,” he says. “They’re doing fantastically well, and it’s going to be great in the next couple years, but I think we’re going to go where our fans are.”
One exciting new element in play for Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel is the use of the low-gravity. Using the moon’s gravity players can jump higher and together with a jetpack, ice weapons and a newly introduced ground pound attack, this game plans to not only provide Boderlands fans with something exciting but also give a fresh take on the franchise.
Characters and saves from Borderlands and Borderlands 2 will not carry over into The Pre-Sequel, which is set for a fall 2014 release