While the game launches on November 20, it is unclear whether or not the first DLC pack will be available as well (Photo : 2K Games)
Borderlands 2 is at once infectiously insane and mechanically practical, placing an infinite number of randomly generated guns at players' fingertips, but giving each weapon manufacturer a very specific function. Gearbox Software's latest is a "just five more minutes" game, constantly respawning a carrot on a stick that promises new weapons, armor, character and vehicle skins, shields, and class ability upgrades inside the next rabid Skag that gets in the way. Latinos Post was able to play through the first few hours of the Xbox 360 version of the game and will be continually updating this page as a Review in Progress.
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The first thing that Borderlands veterans will notice is the fresh cast of characters comprised of Maya the Siren, Zero the Assassin/Sniper, Salvador the Gunzerker, and Axton the Commando. Once a character is selected, the game wastes no time establishing a quirky antagonist named Handsome Jack, in customary Borderlands tradition. It seems as though the patchwork narrative of the original game has been reworked, tapping that trademark Gearbox personality to craft a cohesive story this time around.
Co-op is the life blood of the Borderlands franchise and the developers know it. Small but significant refinements litter the game's mechanics and remove nagging annoyances from the original. Borderlands 2 streamlines trading, welcoming players to hold the B button while looking at their co-op partner to bring up a menu that allows each person to trade four items at a time. In the past, one player would have to drop their weapons on the ground for other players to pick up. Players will also now automatically pick up money and health that lies on the ground.
During my brief session with the game, I assumed the role of Zero. As an offshoot of Mordechai, the sniper from the original game, the Assassin provides strategic advantage at long range and in close quarters. Zero's special ability channels the phase walk skill of the Siren from Borderlands 1, granting players invisibility and the abiliity to place a hologram decoy. I often found myself triggering the ability, sneaking behind enemies and hacking away with Zero's sword for critical damage. The strategic options are sure to open up further as the Assassin levels up.
Stay tuned for updates on this page, as Latinos Post has only skimmed the surface of Borderlands 2.