You make good points about the story and how well it’s told but all the shitty humor prevents me from taking any part of this game seriously. Asking me to care about characters that are constantly cracking jokes is that exactly: a joke, and what little serious dialogue there is is so poorly voice acted it’s hard to tell if it’s supposed to be yet another joke or not.
I fucking love the soundtrack to FTL.
I am actually surprised you took such a serious look at the game. I always associated it with something like Saints Row as it seems to take no serious tone at all. I feel like your view is one of those that looks way to deep into a story and makes it out to be something it isn’t. You say it is a serious game yet the game does nothing but throw jokes at you for nearly 80% of the game. It seems to be yelling at me to not take it serious. I have to say you are giving it way to much credit. I am also disappointed they didn’t make a unlimited NG+ for the sequel as farming the so called 2.5 endgame gets rather boring once you have done all the quests and it would be nice to revisit them with stronger weapons. Unfortunately the only way to do that is to join another person who has not done them yet.
“While I won’t necessarily disagree with these points, I just argue that they’re putting off an entire game for very small flaws.”
Thank you for hitting the nail right on the head.
I don’t get something, I love the game, but a few plot holes bug the hell out of me. There’s a side quest for handsome jack where you can kill yourself and he will pay you for it, laugh at you and call you a sellout, completely ignoring the fact that you can’t be killed and will respawn if he kills you, so why does he bother trying to kill you anyway? The respawn machine is made by Hyperion, why doesn’t he sabotage it or something? Why can Bloodwing and Roland die while they’re supposed to be revived by the Hyperion respawn? Why doesn’t Jack get revived with the Hyperion respawn? If it was a regular revival station like in Borderlands 1, I’d be fine with it, but in this game the characters acknowledge it, the machine itself talks, it even belongs to the bad guys, so what the hell?
Jack’s flaw is hubris. Despite the fact that you’re going to keep coming back to life no matter how many times you die, Jack is certain that he’ll be able to keep killing you and you’ll ultimately prove to be nothing more than a nuisance once his main plan is complete. As far as he’s concerned, you dying to try to stop him is just putting more money in his wallet so he lets you try to foil his plot, certain that you’ll fail and he’ll succeed and that’ll be the end of it. As for Roland not coming back, he likely had to remove himself from the New-U network in order to not be tracked by Hyperion, same for Lilith and Mordecai and Brick. If any of them died, it’d have been the same.
Or you can ignore all of this and just say it’s a silly video game.
yeah, I see what you are trying to say about the story and it’s quite a fair point, but I argue that these references shouldn’t have been there in the first place. I don’t expect a game made by a multimillion dollar studio to stoop so low as to insert the equivalence of knock-knock jokes in place of actual writing. The story itself can hold itself up very well, especially for those who goes the extra mile to complete the secondary quests, but these memes should have never been in such a mega-production…
There is also a brief analysis of the work environment in gearbox made by another reviewer, you should take a look at it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fpXcgCHKKok&feature=plcp
I disagree. You make a good point that the game is definitely still enjoyable sans story, but I don’t think that even if you took away the poorly written jokes you come away with a single well written character.
The most EGREGIOUS problem with the writing is the numerous plot holes. I’m about 25 hours in, but, unless they tie them up brilliantly in the last few hours, here’s my problems.
1. The importance of “Vault-hunters.” As far as I understand, Vault hunters are just mercenaries in search of their fortune. Yet everyone applauds your arrival like you’re the United Liberation Army. I mean, my comprehension of the story elements could be horrible, but, What exactly makes your money grubbing character a hero again? It kind of removes the “oh it’s a gritty morally questionable universe” when everyone praises you like Kim Jung in North Korea.
2. The Hyperion revival machines…Come on, are you serious? The respawn machines are owned by the bad guys? This can only lead to one of two conclusions. A) The writing is hilariously bad and they never tie up this loose end. B) It’s a “JUST AS PLANNED WE WERE MANIPULATING YOU THE WHOLE TIME” explanation…which, is hollow, because it’s made obvious as the only alternative at first death. Which leads me to my next point:
3. The overarching plot – Without spoiling anything. The plot twists are incredibly predictable and banal at best (At least the ones I’ve seen), and because I felt the characters were bland and boring, I had a hard time appreciating ANYTHING that was going on. The contention that Handsome Jack is well written is misplaced I think, but, I’ll save that judgment for when I beat the game.
1. Handsome Jack kills all the Vault Hunters. Being one (Actually choosing to come to Pandora because god knows why) means that… well, as the game puts it, faced off Jack and lived. Even though he wasn’t really there, but still, you survived. Hooray.
2. Yeah, it’s bullshit.
3. Nah, I liked some of the directions the plot took, but one of them really came out of nowhere.
Overall, for me, it’s a 6~7/10. Could be better, but eh. I pirated it, so I don’t have to deal with the fact that I gave Gearbox money for this game.
Good stuff. It’s nice to see that you didn’t just shit all over the game, like some other people have.
Seemed to me that everyone I played with loved the humor, but mostly from the dialogue, not from the references in weapon names or quests. I absolutely loved Claptrap in this game, much more than I did in the first.
Just a question. Were the reference jokes in the game deliberately done by writers and/or devs because they thought people would find them funny (which they aren’t) or are they more like easter eggs or references that the writers and/or devs just to have fun?
I always remember seeing easter eggs or references and thinking, “Oh, neat” instead of laughing. Kind of like, a reminder that the people who made these games are, well, people. You know how there are people who put up posters of things they like in their room? Kinda like that.
I only ask this because Tim mentioned in his review that the cringe inducing jokes aren’t really that many and you’ll have to look for them to encounter them, which makes them sound more like easter eggs.
>writer from destructoid
>”bullet 2 da knee”
yeah fuck this grind/reddit fest
>ignoring a game based solely on /v/ hate
>ignoring a good game because of a few irrelevant issues
>playing games for story
>caring about where the writer is from
You are a faggot, that is all.
I’ve also put about 100 hours into the game thus far, and have never encountered the “bullet to the knee” joke. The only reason I actually found the Minecraft area was because it was plastered all over the internet. The most overt “meme” referencing I’ve seen in the game was the double rainbow area, mostly because it was an achievement. I thought the majority of the actual humor was pretty funny, including the sidequest with that asshole Dave. People are blowing the meme shit way out of proportion.
The jokes are so bad and so distracting I assumed the rest of the story was just as God awful and didn’t care for a moment to take a deeper look.
I’m not even talking about the bullet to the knee thing, didn’t even know that was in the game. There’s just so much stupid stuff being said everywhere you go. Not to mention it seems that EVERYONE is gay. Every time a significant other is brought up that person is the same sex as the person talking. Over and over it happened and it got old.
So, yeah, I didn’t think Handsome Jack was anything special at all with his Butt Stallion bits, even though I did chuckle at that.
Why so much hate about the “bullet to the knee” joke ? … I mean, the first Borderlands did it first, before Skyrim, so it was an inside joke …
As for the review, it was good but please 1) be more consistent: jumping from backstory+tiny tina to a more conventional “bullet-point” review was kind of a let-down, I liked your insight on Tiny Tina, going into “auto pilot” with a traditional review was too standard and mainstream 2) trust your opinion more: You didn’t find the humor cringe-worthy ? Perfect, it’s not necessary to report other people’s opinion, it’s their problem, stick to your experience and your experience alone.
As for the criticism of the game story and humor: cmon, this is not Bioshock and it was never meant to be: it’s a First Person DIablo that bases itself on a psychological trick to keep the player hooked
Thank you for giving the game a fair shake. Yes, there are some annoying jokes, yes, there are some eyerolling attempts at referential humour, but at the end of the day, people are bitching over an extremely small amount of content out of a very large amount. I kind of feel that these people are actively seeking for reasons to hate it and settling on the most visible, if not necessarily the most damaging flaws and then blowing them out of proportion just for the sake of writing the game off. For me that’s a dead giveaway that they’ve not given the game a fair chance, because it does have some actual flaws outside of a few shitty jokes, the biggest ones for me being the mostly useless map, annoying flying enemies, retarded timed missions and the massive anticlimax at the end of the main plot. However, even these are relatively minor in the grand scheme of things, and I feel that this has been the best offering from the big-budget studios so far this year.
Without wanting to delve into the game as a whole right now, I can say that I don’t follow your conclusion that Handsome Jack is a rounded, not-unambiguously-evil antagonist. Jack is one of the most irreconcilable, abhorrently cruel and despicable bastards I have encountered in a videogame since Kefka. He takes a painstaking, childlike glee in harassing his enemies, and takes gross enjoyment out of exploiting and torturing them. In fact if anything he reminds me of General Serrano from Bulletstorm, whose dialogue was specifically intended to invoke thoughts of belligerent, foul-mouthed teenagers on XBox Live.
If you want to indicate that Jack intends to wipe the world clean of bandits and monsters, and that makes his moral alignment ambigious, I’ll point to his every other action. Jack’s sole motivation is his own ego and self-gratification. Nothing he does is out of a desire to better the lives of anyone but himself. He actively abuses every underling or being in the world that isn’t himself, and this in a world where technology is so ridiculously advanced and Hyperion’s resources are so limitless that extending an olive branch and a chance at a new life to the people of Sanctuary would be a paltry gesture.
I love Jack as a villain because of his lack of ambiguity, and he in fact proves that extravagant malevolence is a wonderful way to motivate a player against the ultimate adversary.
I think most of, if not all, of the criticisms of the humour are misplaced. The framework many are operating under here is “Gearbox meant for the audience to laugh at Borderlands 2′s jokes on the surface level.” If this were a valid premise, I would agree: the jokes are heavily juvenile. However, Gearbox seems to have intended for us to see irony in the juvenile humour: the light-heartedness that many have to hyperbolic (to the point of silly) mass violence; the blatant immaturity and condescension of a corporate leader/tyrant; even something so small as the toilets that spray shit and loot out. From the tragic circumstances that Tim pointed out, these over-the-top elements clearly do not fit, which is why their presence is ironic. You’re not meant to laugh at things like Jack’s “Butt Stallion” joke, but the situational irony behind him so childishly taunting the player from his high position of power. He’s a dick who resorts to making butt jokes, yet he’s in control of a planet with a largely-untapped high potential for energy and new, deadly technological advances. How is that not funny?
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