Season 2 of the Borderlands 3 DLC is here and is coming out with a huge bang! With the release of the Designer’s Cut, Borderlands 3 brings back old favorite characters, Axton and Salvador, and we get to see what these two have been up two since the events of Borderlands 2. Along with a new skill tree for each of the Vault hunters, the new DLC has something for everyone to continue, or even begin your adventures in the Borderlands universe.
Jumping off the back of season one’s last DLC, the Psycho Krieg and the Fantastic Fustercluck, with its rich story content and emotional send-off for two much-loved characters, to the start of Season 2 Designer’s Cut DLC, with a return of Axton and Salvador starting their game show of sorts with a battle royal twist. Saying this, with the Arms Race content I can’t help feel a little underwhelmed in story content this time around, especially with it being a less story-driven affair and more of a battle royal of sorts.
Don’t get me wrong, the concept is great, with yourself and any vault hunters starting with no gear to speak of. As stated rule number 1 of Arms Race; you start fresh, no bringing your gear in! Rule number 2; what you find you keep, with a catch. If your team loses, so is all the gear you just earned, and rule number 3; a match is only over when all your team members are dead, but teammates can be revived. With having to find weapons and gear from scratch to be prepared for a challenging boss fight at the end.
With the emphasis mostly on exploring this new map to get better gear, I found that I did enjoy this concept, and the fact that you can only choose to extract a few weapons each time you jump into Arms Race makes it more worthwhile for replayability. However, you can use the extractors before you reach the ending boss and sacrifice some of the more valuable gear you find, but doing so may jeopardize your chances during the battle, and the more you explore and fight, the more of a chance you get for legendary weapons and gear. So if you’re catching up and want to grind your character up a bit more this game mode is perfect not just for you, but that friend you want to get into Borderlands 3.
Talking about the new map itself is not too big in scale and can be easily explored, but like many battle royales, there is a type of murder cloud that restricts areas off over time, which can certainly add to the replayability aspect. With the map always directing you towards the boss that is always located in the same area, you hope you will be prepared for what lies ahead, and you’ll want to have the right gear saved for your final battle.
Another aspect to the Designer’s Cut DLC is the addition of new skill trees for each of the Vault Hunters, such as Amara’s Enlightened Force, an elemental orb that can be thrown around the battlefield unleashing destruction upon your enemies, along with a little emphasis on melee attacks linked with elemental attacks, and the ability to be a great support when playing with friends. You also have Zane’s The Professional, giving him the MNTIS shoulder cannon, which when activated can fire up to three charges, giving you an edge during battle. Somewhat along the lines of the shoulder cannon from the Predator movies, using this together with his other skill tree unlocks makes Zane a perfect run and gun character.
Now with FL4K’s ‘Trapper’ skill tree, he has a new Loader Bot pet that is a great addition along with a fun gravity snare. Mixing those two together brings a whole new way for a little crowd control and is very useful when taking on several enemies. Plus, who doesn’t love having a new pet? Onto my favorite character, Moze’s Bear Mother skill tree grants her the use of an Iron Cub, a mini version of your beloved mech that follows you around the battlefield, submitting enemies to your iron will!
I do have to say I love seeing this little bundle of destruction run around the battlefield with you. Also, I do have to note the Never Gonna Give You Up passive ability will never let you down in battle, and when you run around in battle, the Iron Cub won’t desert you.
In conclusion, the starting of season 2 DLC may lack in the way of story content, but it makes up in setting the foundation for new and old players to jump back into the Borderland universe. From the new skill trees to the Arms Race DLC, players can expect this to just be the beginning of something bigger in the long run.
- Fun gameplay
- The expected Borderlands style of humour
- New skill trees
- New map
- Great way to power level your character
- Not much in the way on story content compared to previous DLC