Massive multiplayer games have just gone out of style these days. Anyone else remember how much they've spent on subscribing to games like World of Warcraft and Ragnarok? The accumulated amount of money would have probably gotten us our own cars if we had saved 'nuff.
MOBA is partly to blame. It's free, for the most part, faster-paced with an even more toxic environment. I've had my own share of getting treated like shit - and there is often an alluring cash prize for competitive players. Not to mention some Twitch players can actually make a living out of playing MOBA games. I've never been that good in MOBA games, and it's quite hard to get into it when it is dominated to the skies by hardcore players. My own friends prefer to stir away from playing it, and rather just watch and cheer on their own computer screens as spectators.
I'm just not interested in MOBA to take it on my own. What I'm interested at, are fighting games and shooters. So, when titles like Overwatch and Battleborn, are announced and recently hit shelves, I'm sold till kingdom come.
Let's talk about Battleborn for this article.
Don't worry - this isn't a grudge match between Overwatch and Battleborn, both are different enough from each other.
Have you see the Battleborn prologue? Well, Gearbox is known for showing off some really cool intros and Battleborn has one that sets standards.
The Aeon Flux-ish art style with Deltron 3030's newest song, Countdown, sure knows how to set the mood with Battleborn. It almost makes you wish the game instead was an animated movie series that could laser burn eyeballs with so much awesome happening.
The shit side here is that the animated opening gave us a shit-high standard of what the game may look like. When the game actually starts and you're introduced with the familiar Borderlands-esque graphics, it feels kind of a letdown. I'm not saying the graphics are terrible, it's very stylish really. However, it's not as stylish as the animated intro and we'd all want to play with 'dat' graphics instead. It's a small thing to bother, but nice to point out.
Battleborn, in a nutshell, is the larger version of Borderlands. The art style, the humor, the character's weirdness, it's all Borderlands. It might have as well been called Borderlands Online. It's ridiculous and fun.
There are two main game modes. The campaign mode, which can be tackled on by yourself with one of the 25 launch characters, or you can play with a group of five and try to save the last few minutes of the entire universe. This part of the game wears down quickly. It's nothing more than a practice ground for you to get a good feel of the game's mechanics and to be familiar with the character you're using. That's not to say Battleborn's campaign mode lacks story. In fact, there is a good chunk of story material in the game, which is, decent. Plus, you've got 25 available characters, each with their own background stories added to the mix.
The amount of characters and their stories can be quite jarring though, considering that each of them hailed from some point of the universe. That doesn't mean their stories aren't interesting. They all have their own sets of skills and play styles. It's not just another character in the first-person holding a gun or a sword.
The second main game mode, where Battleborn is really played, is online multiplayer. There are three multiplayer modes. Capture Maps, is a territorial dispute, where teams must capture and defend three specific areas from their opponents. The first team who reaches 1K points wins the game. Thankfully, it isn't simply a shoot-the-other-guy. A few twist elements have been added, such as AI enemies for leveling up and the ability to build defense mechanisms to make things a little bit more difficult for the opposing team.
The Incursion mode plays similar to MOBA games. As a team, you're tasked to defend a station, with a bitch of an attitude. It sorta plays like an escort mission, which is really cool and somewhat annoying as your attention is divided between defending your base, attacking your enemy's base, and staying alive. There's more about this mode I haven't mentioned and it is best to just experience it. It's all Borderlands-humor.
Finally, there is the Meltdown mode, which has creeps spawning and attacking borders, with you escorting them. This is where all the chaos happens, with no one else to worry about, or area to defend, this is where you just blast your way through enemy lines.
Players are awarded with gear from every play. Gears are buffs and you'd need to collect shards to activate them. Up to three gears can be equipped and prepared for each loadout. Once you have selected your gears, you're stuck with them through the duration of the game.
There is room for a lot of improvement. Future updates are exciting as we may get new characters, new maps, new gears, new everything. It's an all-out ride full of crazy ideas put together in a blender. Battleborn is a damn fine game, but it's just not a great, epic game.