Borderlands 2 is going to be the hot release this year for a lot of gamers. Last month, 2K games released the debut launch trailer, showing the four new characters and some of the gameplay, but we want to know more.
Gearbox Softaware's Anthony Burch gives us the goods in an interview with El33tonline. Burch gives us a lot more details about improvements to the game in general and even some details about the new character's abilities.
"We’ve got a lot of enemies returning from the first game – psychos, skags, and so forth – but we’ve got at least a dozen new enemies in Borderlands 2. We’ve also improved the AI for all the enemies in the game: skags will now transmit their elemental type to other skags (so a fire skag can do a ground pound and set all the skag pups around him on fire, turning them into fire pups)"
Burch goes on to talk about the improved AI of the enemies, making for a more fun and challenging experience. "Our enemies are now more complex and require more strategy – really effective teams will be able to take down, say, a Nomad Torturer (a new enemy who fights with a midget strapped to his massive, bulletproof shield) very easily by using one player to draw his aggro while another flanks him."
He says the weapon system will return with a larger variety of guns to collect. Like the first game, each in game brand will feature its own perks and strategy. "If you get a Dahl assault SMG, it’ll only shoot in burst-fire mode, but it’ll do really high damage and have a practically non-existent bullet spread. If you get a Tediore SMG, you’ll chuck it like a grenade every time you reload it. If you get a Maliwan SMG, it’ll always do a buttload of elemental damage. Each manufacturer has its own gimmick, so each gun feels totally different from every other gun."
Burch goes into detail about the character classes, their skills and what makes each one unique.
Maya mirrors Lilith from the first Borderlands, incorporating elemental and phase abilities into her fighting style. The main difference will be the elimination af the Phasewalk ability and the introduction of the Phaselock.
"Maya’s Phaselock skill is a crowd control ability. By Phaselocking an enemy, she takes them out of the fight for a limited time – the enemy can’t hurt the players, but the players can hurt the enemy."
Salvador is the berserker class, using brawn and firepower to blast through enemies quickly.
"Salvador has three skill trees: the ’rampage‘ tree, which is about all dual-wielding all the time, the ’brawn‘ tree, which is about being a badass tank who takes lots of damage, and the gun lust tree, which is about doing crazy stuff with weapons."
"There’s a skill called ’No Kill Like Overkill‘ that converts all excess damage from a killed enemy into health – so, say, if you do 100 damage to a guy who has only 1 hp left, you get 99 health."
Aston will be the soldier class character, ala Roland from the first Borderlands.
"Axton has an auto-turret much like Roland did in the first game, but Axton’s can be upgraded to do stuff that Roland’s turret could only dream of. For example, if you invest in the ‘Mag-Lock’ skill, you can toss the turret onto walls and ceilings to flush enemies from cover."
Finally, Zero mimmicks Mordecai. He can be deadly with a sniper rifle or with melee attacks at close range.
"Zero is both a melee fighter and a sniper – depending on which skills you purchase, Zero can either be spectacularly strong at close range, or at long range, or both. He’s got a skill tree that’s all about sniping, as well as a skill tree that’s about getting in close and dealing ludicrous damage with melee weapons. His action skill, Deception, allows him to become invisible and create a decoy of himself on the battlefield."
Borderlands 2 Improvements:
- -More guns. More environments.
- -Appearances by the first Borderlands characters: All four playable characters, Dr. Zed, Scooter, Claptrap
- -Over a dozen new enemies will be introduced.
- -New four player operated vehicles.
- -Each character has on average 30% more skill abilities than the original
Borderlands 2 is scheduled for release on September 18th in North America. The game will be playable at the PAX East Convention in Boston April 6th, so plan on more information being available at that time.