Borderlands 3 Still Has Surprises In Store, One Year After Release


As the pioneer of the so-called “looter-shooter” sub-genre, Gearbox Software’s Borderlands is a brash and in-your-face action-RPG series with an infinite supply of guns and a squad of badass, quirky vault hunters to get to know. After a short hiatus between entries, 2019’s Borderlands 3 was an explosive return for the franchise’s bizarre yet enticing nightmare gallery, filled with big guns, fast vehicles, and tons of pop-culture references. However since the release of 2012’s Borderlands 2, the landscape has changed, with the rise of other looter-shooter games like Destiny 2 and Tom Clancy’s The Division. Because of this, Borderlands 3’s non-subtle and more energetic approach to the loot-grind was simultaneously a nostalgic sight and something of a throwback to the early 2010s shooter.

At launch, Borderlands 3 was a solid return for the series, keeping up with the many tenets of collecting loot, nailing fast kills with your character’s expanded suite of abilities, and a plot that sought to tie up many of the franchise’s long-gestating questions. However, it wasn’t without its criticisms. While the story was a lot more sprawling in comparison to previous games, it didn’t quite land many of its more impactful moments, and its endgame content left people wanting after the story’s completion.

But like its direct predecessor, Borderlands 2, the most recent entry in the series was a game in progress and it has evolved in some significant ways over its first year. Since its September 2019 release, Borderlands 3 has seen a suite of changes and revisions that have not only fleshed out its universe but remade the original endgame loop (known as Mayhem mode), upping the thrills and keeping people invested post-campaign. In many ways, this first year of content for Borderlands 3 has gone a long way in further defining the game’s