Battleborn is an arena-type battle game with lots of playable characters. Brought to you by 2K Games and Gearbox, initial expectations for the game were set high. The 25 playable characters provide a vast mix of skills, abilities, and classes. Want to be a tank to soak up damage? Go for it. Want to be a long-range support player volleying arrows at your foes? Have at it. Want to be a maniacal penguin in a huge mechanized combat suit? Yep, it’s here too. Did the game live up to the hype it was given before launch? Only one way to find out!
Blue Ball Score: 11 out of 25 balls
As a first-person shooter, the controls are very simple to pick up. The controls will vary slightly from character to character. Melee characters might have a few different button layouts than weapon wielders for example. However, nothing is off the walls here and you shouldn’t have any problems adjusting to different characters. And with more heroes than you can shake a stick at, you’re certain to find something that you like.
In general, gameplay moves fast and the battlefield is hectic. Imagine ten Sonic The Hedgehogs running around with guns and magical abilities… and then give the critters a nice mixture of PCP, LSD, and bath salts… and you will find Battleborn. You’ll need laser-sharp focus as the game will demand your full attention. Grab a buddy to squirt eye drops directly in your sockets since blinking will be an afterthought. In fact, consider yourself lucky if you remember to even breathe. Your eyes will be begging for mercy as they are tortured and violated into submission. Tears stream down your face like a glacial waterfall, and the whites of your eyes turn redder than a baboon’s hairless ass. Good luck solider.
Whether you are destroying n00bs or AI minions, the battles become extremely repetitious. Story mode missions are fights through wave after wave of enemies until you reach your end goal. Use your primary attacks, then use your special attacks, then use your primary attack while your specials recharge, and repeat the process until you’re dead or the AI is dead. Multiplayer modes play the same way, except the enemy has special attacks too. In the end, it just felt empty and dull.
The new wears off fast in this game, and as such earns 3 balls.
After the Prologue, you’re able to play the story mode, if that’s what you want to call it. You’ll be matched up with 4 other players to take down a mission. The missions basically provide background story to a particular character, and drive you towards finding out what happened with the universe. Only a single star, called Solus, remains in the universe and the remaining species all head for the last shining beacon in existence. Battle commences between all of the factions until they are eventually united against a common foe. As you play and raise your “command” level by earning XP, you’ll unlock new characters, each with their own set of skills and abilities. You will need cooperation from all of your teammates to achieve success, otherwise you are destined to be a failure. I found that my team could care less if we survived or not. They just ran around aimlessly like a dog chasing its tail. I’d recommend you play with friends if at all possible. Also, the option to go at it solo is available, but no one wants to play with themselves! It’s always better to have a partner!
If you’ve read my reviews in the past, you know that I am not a fan of rinse-and-repeat style gameplay. As such, story mode only gets 3 balls.
If you’re somehow able by an act of Congress to get into a match, you’ll find the cocaine fueled energy doesn’t dissipate. You’ll have trouble finding out where you are getting hit from as you are pressed into a panic attack. Anxiety turns to anger until you respawn and can breathe. I found myself switching characters often to try the different classes and unique skillsets of each hero. I never found one that I loved, as each one had their strengths and weaknesses. My main problem with the multiplayer was the lack of balance. Players that are 50 levels higher than you have better abilities and heroes available, and quickly outmatch you at every turn. You don’t stand a chance until you make it through the long grind to reach a high level yourself. Good luck.
Multiplayer provides three modes: Meltdown, Devastation, and Incursion. Meltdown is your typical team deathmatch style, where the most kills win. Devastation is similar to a Call Of Duty Domination game mode, where each team earns points for controlling three points on the map. Incursion is more of a battle-arena type game mode, where you must push into the enemy base and destroy two sentry bots. I found matches to be long, irritating, and boring. A single incursion match can last up to 30 minutes, and after you add your wait time from matchmaking, you’ve just spent an hour to play one match. Awesome (sarcasm).
An unfair advantage to high level players, absurd matchmaking times, and a lack of variety in game modes earns a dismal 1.5 balls.
Sounds are a bit abysmal. They seem flat and uninteresting. Perhaps that’s because the developers knew that 126% of your attention span would need to be dedicated to the bloodbath on each map. Or perhaps they just didn’t give your ears the attention that they deserve. The world may never know the answer to this enigma. In any case, what we do know is that they certainly could’ve done a better job.
Ordinary graphics and dull sounds earn 2.5 balls.
In conclusion, the game had promise but couldn’t live up to the hype. A large cast of characters wasn’t enough to keep players’ interest and the game is dying just like the in-game universe. At this point, I’m not sure anything could save it. I wouldn’t recommend this game to anyone, but I would recommend watching the intro on the webs. The opening cinematic is the Solus in the game, the only shining star. Battleborn earns a total of 11 balls out of 25. Ugh.