Games Inbox: Did Borderlands 3 live up to the hype?

The Tuesday Inbox continues the battle between Super Mario Odyssey and Super Mario Galaxy 2, as a reader accuses Street Fighter II of cheating.

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Not bad

So I see Borderlands 3 has become 2K’s fastest selling game ever (presumably not counting anything from Rockstar) and basically being the biggest game of the year so far. This makes me think two things, the first being the obvious benefit of waiting a while between sequels so there’s more anticipation. I’m certain it wouldn’t have done a well if this was actually Borderlands 6 and you’d been getting a new one every two years. But, of course, that’s not a lesson that publishers ever seem to learn.

The second is that… I’m kind of bored of it all ready. I’m sure 2K don’t care about the reviews, and feel their plan of not sending code out earlier worked perfectly, but I have to say that the ones from reliable sources (GC and Eurogamer, especially) were pretty on the nose as far as I’m concerned.

The guns are more fun but other than that it’s actually a pretty repetitive and uneventful game that I found myself getting bored of a lot quicker than I expected. The humour is also really trying too hard. There are some good gags in there but the constant talking from everyone just made me kind of switch off after a while and stop listening.

It’s not a bad game, I don’t regret getting it, but I’m glad I got it on disc because I’m probably going to sell it pretty soon. Anyone else feel the same way?
Watson

 

Unrealistic colours

If I were to sum up the Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare beta in one word I would say ‘boring’. This might sound a bit harsh because generally it played well. The 2v2 Gunfight mode was new and the return of Ground War was an experience but the main maps were visually bland. Azhir Cave, the desert mountain village map, was OK-ish but Gun Runner and Hackney Yard were so dull in colour palette that the first time I played them both I thought they were opposite ends of the same map! Grazna Raid wasn’t much better.

I’m not saying every map has to have bright neon colours like Black Ops III’s rendition of Nuketown but it’d be nice to have maps with a bit more individual personality. It’s not just the colour pallet, but the settings as well. You could use the same adjectives to describe the latter three maps: run-down, abandoned, derelict, etc.

I didn’t play the beta for Call Pf Duty: WWII so don’t know what those maps were like but the betas for Infinite Warfare, Black Ops III, and 4 all had more interesting maps in terms of visuals and yes, I know those three were set in the future but what’s wrong with a bit of glitz and glamour?

How about a map set around Buckingham Palace or the Houses of Parliament or the Louvre – something that’ll be more fun to play around? Especially when you’re trying to convince people to buy your game.

One of the most fun Call Of Duty maps I’ve played on was Splash from Black Ops III. Set in a theme park, it was a joy every time it came around. I honestly didn’t feel much interest or excitement waiting in the lobby seeing what the next Modern Warfare map was about to load.

I know it seems like I’m whinging on about just four maps out of the probably 12+ that will be shipped but considering this Call Of Duty is supposed to be ultra-gritty and realistic and the majority of the maps will likely be based upon the campaign, I hope we get more than just the military brown, green, and grey coloured maps.
PsillyPseudonym

GC: We think you’re going to be disappointed in that regard.

 

Customer served

How crazy, I had a knock at the door today and it was the postman with a small brown parcel addressed to me. I wasn’t expecting anything particular, so I opened it and inside was an Orb PS4 controller charging unit sent from 365games.co.uk. Enclosed with the gift was a letter saying, ‘Welcome to the 365 Family and that I had been a pleasure to work with and my feedback over the telephone was greatly appreciated.’

Well, the only time I’ve ever bought anything from 365games was when I pre-ordered the game Wreckfest and it was only the other week I asked here on GC if this particular games company were legit? Well anyway, once I had my game delivered on the release date I rang 365 games regarding my bonus car I was supposed to get due to me pre-ordering Wreckfest. This very kind lady at the other end of the phone called Georgia said she would find out for me and the following day I received an email with the bonus code for my extra car!

I just thought it was a very nice touch from 365games to of sent me this nice gift and I can only give them 10/10 for their full customer service and generosity, which seems to be very rare these days.
JAH

 

E-mail your comments to: [email protected]

 

Origin of the Knight

Enjoyed the Batman Reader’s feature at the weekend. Totally agree about Arkham Origins being better than Arkham Knight.

Origins’ story was really good as it was it the early years of Batman, so people didn’t see him instantly as a hero, in fact some people thought he was just an urban legend.

Arkham Knight was more about the Batmobile which totally ruined it for me-– no, I don’t want endless drone fights and never, ever want another stealth tank section as long as I live!

So many important encounters in Arkham Knight were limited to QTEs, whereas you had some proper boss fights in Origins.

Origins did re-use a lot from City but I really enjoyed it, where as I really disliked Arkham Knight.
LastYearsModel

 

Accurate prediction

It’s been said, and I’ve noticed too, that there is a correlation between what is on PS Plus and a future sequel to a game or something from that developer/publisher.

So with Batman: Arkham Knight currently on this month’s PS Plus and Batman Day having recently happened, what are the odds we finally get the official Batman: Court of Owls announcement from WB Montreal in the Sony State of Play?
Oni-samurai (PSN ID)
Currently playing: Shenmue II
Next: God Of War, boy!

GC: As far as we can tell, you sent this before the tweet that may have been teasing exactly that. Good job!

 

Unexpected quality

Two brief things: did you know there was an animated series of mobile phone free-running game Subway Surfers? I attach a link to the first episode to prove it exists. I would’ve thought Temple Run was more popular to be honest.

Then there’s the new Olympics game with Mario and Sonic. Am I crazy, but does it actually look pretty good? I could well be proven wrong on that point…
DMR

 

New retro

Just wanted to see if there was any interest in the new upcoming Intellivison Amico console coming out next year? Looks like an interesting new piece of tech. GameCentral, do you think it will have some success?

With Tommy Tallarico onboard and with a passion for gaming I feel excited for something new. Especially seeing that they are developing a new Earthworm Jim game. Your thoughts?
SlimsyWolf82241 (gamertag)/Burkehare01 (PSN ID)

GC: We have to admit we know very little about it or the original Intellivision, but we’ll certainly try to cover it when it’s released.

 

Top marks

Interesting Reader’s Feature on Super Mario Odyssey but I feel it did the game a disservice. Not in terms of whether it’s better than Galaxy or not, which ‘m not overly concerned about, more that the piece didn’t convey just how much fun it actually is. I picked up a Switch this year and the first game I played was Odyssey. I spent most of the time playing with the biggest grin on my face, which lasted all the way to getting all 880 Power Moons (I know you can buy more).

The experience was just a sheer joy from start to finish and I thought it had a really good mix of old and new. I loved the nostalgia of the 2D sections (my first console was a NES), especially the way they seamlessly dropped in and out of the levels with little fanfare or need for explanation. Equally, the newer ideas were just as good. I never knew that what was missing from my life was the chance to have Mario jump from a skyscraper on a scooter wearing his boxer shorts and a sombrero. I now feel complete. It wasn’t just me, both of my kids completed the game (13 and 11) and were blown away by it.

I would hope it’s reputation does stand the test of time. Definite 10/10 from our household and another example of how Nintendo are peerless.

However, we’d also welcome a rerelease of both Galaxy games for the Switch. Not played them for a while…
James

 

Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here

 

Something new

I won’t go over the reasons I think Super Mario Odyssey is the best Mario game ever again, in the end it’s all subjective, but what I would like to do is strongly discourage Nintendo from ever making Super Mario Galaxy 3. This may be controversial but as far as I’m concerned Super Mario Galaxy 2 was not a successful Mario sequel. Really it was little more than an overgrown expansion of the first title having originally being planned as Galaxy 1.5.

It’s still a good game but I had definitely begun to lose interest before the end. It’s quite unusual for Nintendo to have two mainline Mario titles on one console but the one time they did, which was an unequivocal triumph, was with Super Mario World and Yoshi’s Island on the SNES. Why was Yoshi’s Island such a classic follow-up? Nintendo’s brave decision to do something different.

Without meaning to be unkind, people calling for Nintendo to just rerun old games from their back catalogue are displaying a severe lack of imagination. Something which luckily Nintendo themselves have in spades. Could I have imagined Super Mario 64 and its full 3D world before seeing it with my own eyes? No. Could I have imagined F.L.U.D.D. and Sunshine’s oil-cleaning gameplay before seeing it? No. Could I have imagined Galaxy’s gravity and globe-trotting mechanics before seeing it? No. Could I have imagined Mario as a T-Rex, a tank, a giant fist, and over 40 other lovely surprises before seeing it? No.

In all these cases Nintendo could have just rested on their laurels and served up more of the same. But that’s not them. I’m sure people would have wanted and even enjoyed a cookie cutter sequel to Super Mario World back on the SNES but would it have had the same lasting impact as the inspired new gameplay in Yoshi’s Island, one of the greatest games ever? I don’t think so.

Nintendo are the best because they think up new stuff no-one else can. Personally, I am always desperate to see what they come up with next, not see them dwell on their past glories. Odyssey may be my favourite Mario game now but I know Nintendo will come up with something even better in the future, if not on the Switch on some future console. I for one can’t wait to be surprised again.
Ryan O’D

GC: We’d always prefer something new too but framing Super Mario Galaxy 2 as a cookie cutter sequel seem grossly unfair. It’s our favourite 3D Mario and superior to the first.

 

Inbox also-rans

I recently bought John Wick 3 on Blu-ray and thought it was brilliant. I have a digital copy for download which I have no need for and maybe one of your readers would like the code.
David Clixby

GC: That’s very good of you, thanks.

This is quite an interesting video I saw on YouTube it shows how the computer cheats in the original Street Fighter II.
Andrew J.
Currently playing: Halo: Spartan Ops co-op (Xbox One)

 

This week’s Hot Topic

The subject for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Tolly and asks what video game franchise have you played the most entries from?

With FIFA 20 coming out this week is it a sports game series or other franchise that gets yearly sequels? Or it is something that comes out more rarely, but you always make sure to follow? How many of the games do you still own, compared to selling them off to buy the next one?

How loyal are you to video game franchises and are there any you’ll buy automatically because they’ve never let you down? Does that extend to spin-offs and would you consider yourself a collector?

E-mail your comments to: [email protected]

 

The small print
New Inbox updates appear twice daily, every weekday morning and afternoon. Readers’ letters are used on merit and may be edited for length.

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