With Borderlands being a very successful franchise, Gearbox continued their success with Borderlands 2 in 2012. Releasing countless of DLC packs, and later on a pre-sequel to Borderlands 2. These 2 heavy hitters were one of the best Looter-Shooters out there and to this day still, are very popular choices amongst the masses. Of course being no match, graphically, to games like Destiny or Anthem (rest in peace Anthem). Or at least, they were. With Borderlands 3 releasing later on this year, Borderlands 2 and the pre-sequel get a UHD patch, which brings them up to par with their counterparts, or does it? Has Borderlands 2 still got the magic and appeal that it had all those years ago, or did it become a stale and faint shadow of itself in this now 2019 market? Does this Handsome Collection truly live up to its name? Or should it have been left aside to make room for Borderlands 3? Well, time to find out in this review of Borderlands 2 – Handsome Collection.
- UHDriffically designed: One of the first things that you’ll notice the moment you install the UHD pack, is that everything looks wonderful. The colors pop out and the world just looks that much sharper. Tiny intricate details on guns and just, anything in the world, get enhanced and brought into the picture. Your scopes show what you are looking at even when you’re not zooming in. Tiny dangly bits show up crisp and clear. The NPC’s look a lot more lively (hellooo Moxxi… Am I right lads?). Sure it brings out everything, even the flaws (more on that later). But I got to say, this pack really livens up the game and makes it a lot easier to look at. So if you’ve got a television that supports UHD and HDR? Don’t forget to download these after installing the game! They really do A LOT for the game!
- Big-Mawthfull of content: I’m truly not over-exaggerating when I’m saying that Borderlands 2 is a content filled wasteland. But The Handsome Collection takes that and shoves in even more content. Being all the previously released DLC for both games. And trust me, this amounts to over 100+ hours of game time. More if you decide to grind and farm! Not a lot of games out there gives you this amount of content, for the price that you’d be paying for this one. So if you haven’t played Borderlands 2, this is the best bang for your buck! A sure must have for anyone interested in the Looter Shooter genre!
- Vaultuable Loot: Okay, I’ve been putting a lot of emphasis on the words “looter shooter”. But why? A game like destiny does the exact same thing, right? Well, that’s true. Destiny does have this kind of loot system. But don’t forget, they are kind of limited in their loot. Borderlands has billions of possibilities, and then some. Each gun can have a different kind of grip, stats, element, added effects,… There are unique ones out there. But even these unique guns have their own kind of randomizer. And yes this can make farming for a specific variant difficult but on the other hand. That’s what makes this series great, the randomness of the loot.
- Cringetronical Effects: The UHD texture packs bring out a lot of detail in this enormous world. And sometimes, even more, than you’d want to see. Like how illusionary the effects that the game uses, actually are. For instance, the wind blowing sand up on a dune? It might look nicely done. But when you’re walking around the dune you’ll notice that effect starting to get flatter until… it’s a pancake. Yeah… You can literally walk around some effects and see how it works. True cringe, but nothing game breaking. Still, a pity to see this, but I can’t really blame them as this is a game that came out in 2012. I did get quite a laugh when I first met Roland in Sanctuary. His neck and head were protruding so far forward, it looked like his neck grew longer.
- Glitches get Stitches: Unfortunately, this still isn’t a perfect game. Glitches are still present and come up to annoy you from time to time. Sure it’s not very often. But they’re still there. Like weapons that would suddenly clip through the ground and disappear. Or you getting stuck on invisible barriers. Sure nothing game breaking (thank god). But when you’re farming for a certain gun, and that gun then decides to fall off of the map, making it impossible for you to gather? You’ll surely grumble for a while. Or when you’re trying to do a timed quest and the end is in sight, only to fumble it because an invisible pixel makes you crash into it, losing precious seconds. Resulting in a failed quest and forcing you to go through it all over again? Yeah, you’ll be pulling out more hair than you’d wish for. Look at Dae Jim, do YOU want that? Don’t think so…
- Feeling like Cl4p-TP: Borderlands is huge. And I really mean massive. With all this open world for you to discover and run through, you might start to feel a bit like Cl4p-TP does when he is hosting his party. That’s right. Lonely. Now, given the fact that there’s a lot of chatter from the NPC’s and more than enough quests to go around. This feeling won’t come immediately. But the deeper you get into the game ‘s story and an ever-expanding world for you to roam around in. A slight twinge of loneliness might start creeping in. Sure there’s a lot for you to kill and re-kill every time you trek through these desolate places, you’ll still get that “man, I wish I had a friend to run along with me”. My advise? Get a buddy to play with you, or heck, maybe even dabble with the matchmaking. Sure it’s not always perfect, but there are more than enough players out there that are either, going through that same lonely feeling and feel like the vast emptiness could use an extra buddy, or high-level players wanting to power boost you so you can play the UVHM (Ultimate Vault Hunter Mode). Which is basically the end-game content.
- Shoving Borderlands 3 down my windpipe: It’s no big secret at all that Borderlands 3 is going to be huge, and gearbox is preparing for a grand release. Which I can fully understand as it’s been in production for a while now and gets released in just a couple of months. But the ad that’s shown in BL2 and BL2 Pre Seq. as well as the instant link to the pre order page is just a bit too much. We have all seen the ads, we have all seen the trailers. We all know its coming and where we need to be if we’re going to pre order. But why advertise it in every game as well? There’s no need, like, at all! True fans have already pre-ordered. And others that are interested will most likely wait for reviews (hopefully ours).
★ Score: 78%
Borderlands 2 – Handsome Collection truly delivers on what it says it’s going to deliver. A handsome collection. With all the previously released DLC for both games included in one bundle paired with 2 free updates which are the UHD packs, this one truly outshines more recent looter shooter games. I am more than looking forward to Borderlands 3 and hope that they continue their love and dedication for this franchise! Exciting times are ahead!
Developer: Gearbox Software Publisher: 2K Games
Played on: Xbox One X Also available on: PS4 and PC
Alexis spent 30+ hours exploring pandora en gaige-ing the enemies!
Achievement difficulty for 1000 Gamerscore: Yeah 100+ hours will do the trick I think? Maybe? Dunno…
Perfect for: Co-op players, Looter-Shooter fanatics!
Xbox Game Store link: Click here