Earlier this week, developer Gearbox Software offered gamers their first look at their new title Battleborn in action. However, while the footage was compelling it was only a small slice of a larger pie, and left many to wonder how the full game would work.
Hoping to answer those questions, Gearbox Software has today unleashed a more substantial gameplay video focused on Battleborn's cooperative campaign. Much like the initial video, this cooperative footage is still pre-alpha gameplay, but it does help bring Battleborn's concepts into greater focus.
Although the first pitch for Battleborn seemed to suggest the game was part FPS and part MOBA (multiplayer online battle arena), this footage shows very few MOBA elements, if any. Rather, Battleborn appears to be an evolution of Gearbox's work on the Borderlands franchise, and draws heavily from that game's lead.
For starters, Battleborn offers players a unique cast of playable characters to choose from. Each character offers special combat abilities, skill trees, and weapon options, but all are plenty capable in battle. However, it is only when groups of players work together that the true magic of Battleborn seems to develop, as players unite their various skills against hordes of robotic enemies.
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Gameplay wise, Battleborn has a lot in common with Borderlands as well, bringing that series' fast, frenetic FPS combat to open arenas. But where Borderlands was a little more about emergent gameplay, Battleborn appears more focused on staged events like defending a point or tackling a large boss.
What stands out most to me, though, is the personality of the playable characters and NPCs. Humor has always been of Gearbox's strongest attributes, and even though Battleborn doesn't appear to be as story-driven as other games, there are still spots of humor peppered throughout the demo. Whether or not the writing as a whole will be as strong as this brief portion is unclear, but there were certainly parts that made me chuckle.
Overall, Battleborn looks to be well within Gearbox's wheelhouse, albeit with some slight variations on familiar formulas. The combat has similar qualities to Borderlands, but doesn't rely as heavily on being a straight shooter. And visually the game is very striking; with bold splashes of color and some really cool effects. We weren't too sure what Battleborn was going to be when it was first announced, especially after Gerabox said not to call the game a MOBA, but now the picture has become much clearer.
What do you think of Battleborn's cooperative campaign? What about it intrigues you and what do you have questions about?
Battleborn releases in 2015 on PC, PS4, and Xbox One.