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Borderlands 3: Every Handsome Jack Reference in the Game

The Handsome Jack Villian of Borderlands 2 returns for 3, sort of

One thing many fans noticed about Borderlands 3 is the lack of Handsome Jack. The devs did go on to tell everyone why they were interested in moving passed the villain to someone new, as many felt that it would undermine events that took place in Borderlands 2 and The Pre-Sequel, so fans shouldn't be expecting a surprise return in DLC.

That doesn't mean that Handsome Jack, the beloved Borderlands villain with a quip, would be completely off of the table for 3. In fact, there are several instances of Jack returning for the fourth installment in spite of the fact that's he's quite dead, so here's a list of Handsome Jack Easter eggs found so far.  Be warned: this article contains minor spoilers for Borderlands 3.

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Handsome Jackie

Handsome Jackie

Handsome Jackie is a Crew Challenge target that shows up in Skywell-27 on Promethea. And yes, she's wearing Handsome Jack's mask, which may remind several of their time wearing the mask in Borderlands 2, despite how weird it could be. She is a target for Zero's quest to get players the best gun in the game, the Vicious Lyuda.

The Handsome Jackhammer

Handsome Jack has two guns named after him in Borderlands 3, and the Handsome Jackhammer is the first. This gun is a random world drop, which means it can drop from almost anywhere in the game, but seems to have a higher drop rate from the Handsome Jack super fan, Handsome Jackie. It's one of the best drops for this Borderlands 3 boss fight. This Hyperion-made legendary sub-machine gun not only has some interesting qualities, but it also speaks in Jack's very recognizable voice.

The Handsome Jackhammer Borderlands 3

Some of the things the gun says are: "Why don't you find a Hyperion constructor and get me out of this gun? I'll give you... don't have my wallet with me... you know what, let's put a pin on that and stick with the gun for now," and "You have great taste in weapons; I'll give you that, kiddo."

One of the most interesting bits from this gun is the flavor text. "Everyone thinks they are the hero of their own story." While Handsome Jack is definitely a villain, he often boasted how he was the hero of his story and how the player was just another bandit. It's what makes him a favorite Borderlands character and fantastic antagonist, and also what makes this little bit of text so heartbreaking.

The Nimble Jack

This shotgun is a pretty standard Jakobs shotgun with a couple of exceptions such as massively increasing  accuracy while the player is airborne. Also, critical hits don't consume any ammo. These ensure that the Nimble Jack is one of the best shotguns in Borderlands 3. It's flavor text says, "Jack be nimble, Jack be quick, Jack jump up and kill lunatics." While that's a pretty obvious nod to the nursery rhyme of Jack be Nimble, it also may be linked to Handsome Jack as well. This gun is a random world drop as well, but seems to have increased drop rates from Handsome Jackie. If it's a reference to Jack or not, it's a pretty sweet gun and worth farming for.

The Handsome Jack Backstory Side Quest

The Childhood's End side quest in Borderlands 3 is all about Handsome Jack and his backstory. It begins with a portrait of Handsome Jack as he was before he become the CEO of Hyperion. The vault hunter is instructed to find Jack's daughter's, Angel, old toy, which has apparently been imbued with her memories as some side effect of her siren powers. Some of the memories are insanely sad and play with the gamer's heartstrings. For those interested, the below video shows all the memories from that mission.

Handsome Jack was Almost the Villain

This isn't really an Easter egg, but it's an interesting fact all Handsome Jack fans would want to know. It's not even really a surprise but Gearbox began the Borderlands 3 storytelling process with how to bring Handsome Jack back (even though devs have confirmed that Handsome Jack is really, really dead). This video below gives a breakdown about what made Gearbox move away from Jack and pick up the twins:

Since development of Borderlands 3 begin as soon as Battleborn was released in May of 2016, and as the video above mentioned, that influential video about the 10 things no one wanted to see in Borderlands 3 was made in September of 2017, there was a long stretch of dev time where Jack could have still been the villain of 3. This could further suggest that there may be a bunch more Handsome Jack references hidden in the game that no one has found yet.

Borderlands 3 is available for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Google Stadia, and Windows.

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