Borderlands 3 introduces Borderlands Science

Play Borderlands Science inside Borderlands 3 today to earn unique rewards and help map the human gut microbiome.

Next time you’re aboard Sanctuary III in Borderlands 3, keep an eye out for the newly installed Borderlands Science arcade game in the corner of Doctor Tannis’ infirmary. Developed in conjunction with McGill University, Massively Multiplayer Online Science, and The Microsetta Initiative, Borderlands Science is a puzzle game that benefits the real-world scientific community as you play.

Borderlands Science presents you with simple block puzzles based on strands of DNA, and by solving them you’re helping to map and compare the microbes contained therein. Completing these puzzles also earns you in-game currency, which can be redeemed for unique Vault Hunter Heads and Skins as well as timed boosters that buff your stats, loot quality, and even experience gains when you jump back into the mayhem of Borderlands 3 proper.

Borderlands Science exists in part because computers aren’t perfect at organizing this data and make lots of small mistakes that can corrupt subsequent analysis, but the game you play to solve this complex task is easy to understand and play. Colored tiles representing different nucleotides appear on a grid; by nudging them up within their columns, you attempt to organize them into the correct rows. It’s not always possible to line up all of the tiles correctly, but attempting these puzzles is still helpful as you’re identifying errors in real-world computer analyses.

Each of the Borderlands Science puzzles has a target score that you need to hit in order to progress and get credit for solving it. Note that hitting a puzzle’s target score doesn’t mean you have to move on to the next one though; often there will still be additional moves that you can make. Going above and beyond the bare minimum that’s required is key if you want to beat the high scores already posted by Tannis and contribute more data to this important microbe initiative.

In case you’re curious about the practical applications for the raw data gathered through Borderlands Science, the human gut is linked to numerous diseases and conditions, including diabetes, depression, autism, anxiety, obesity and more. By mapping these microbes, the hope is that scientists will be able to better understand these ecosystems, which may help guide future research into novel treatments and interventions. For more information, check out The Microsetta Initiative. And if you want to learn more about the methods, check out


This is cool Gearbox. I’m really stoked to try this out and help decode doo doo DNA :stuck_out_tongue:


Here’s what your looking for.

Just saw that few minutes ago on fb. Remind me of a SETI project on PS3.


Play with the poop!


We really need to add a map to these posts when we add stuff to Sanctuary III.

It’s in Tannis’ room. :slight_smile:


Sounds great, can’t wait to farm all rewards.

/ insertpooptrainconductor.gif

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excuse my low IQ but i dont really understand how that puzzle helps to organize data
like, every game challenge that is programmed, always includes the solution already
how exactly does it work?
someone connected all these informations with the puzzles already so how are we helping in that situation?


Double kudos. :smile:


Hopefully this will give me the code so that I can play online without my console crashing or maybe even fix the co-op.


I hold a degree in Biology so I think this is super cool. I can’t wait to try it.

Also I was wondering why McGill University was suddenly showing up in the credits.


From something I read on the arcade cabinet menu.
The “target” score is the best the computer algorithm got. When you beat it “it’s super useful”
Now how does that work. No idea.
Fun game thou. Rewards are nice.

It probably has something to do with increasing the sample size to confirm/deny the algorithm’s results.

I personally find it comforting that computers can still make mistakes.


Yup, quite fine. Got my first rewards, new skin for Moze (playing as Amara :confused:).


Cool tag. :wink:


Do you know if there are heads too?

heh - there’s that purple bug :laughing:

edit - on a larger scale, this sort of research is interesting to me because someday we will take this for granted as something wadded up in the appendix of biology textbooks the way the periodic table of the elements is in chemistry books now. Back before we had identified the elements, we just didn’t know what stuff really was… like that’s weird to me, and that journey of discovery that filled in the blanks, corrected errors, and suddenly the material world made a lot more sense.

I think we’re at this point now with biological research. There are a lot of things in our bodies, much less the world, that we just don’t understand entirely, but those are falling fast, and it’s pretty cool to be contributing to it. This is why I fold, and this is why I’ll have a go at this game.


Check the links in the announcement to MMOS and Microsetta - that should get you started. Or just watch the video - it’s really good.


I proposed an idea like this back around 2000 to some computer science majors for a final project, they said their professor shot the idea down with a laugh as no one would “buy in”.

There’s zero reason that applied creativity shouldn’t enable additional revenue streams for gaming companies to help bolster “increasingly thin” margins, or volunteer initiatives (such as this one) to turn time gaming into real world results and or profits. The SETI project and Folding at Home both did similar things with harnessing “spare” resources people would donate. I can only hope other companies take note of this and we see more benefits to gamers and our communities from projects like this.

Much respect to Gearbox for putting this in place. I look forward to trying it out for myself!

(As a note: I made more enemies than friends with observations like those above. One employer was finally “kind” enough to take me into their office and tell me that they completely believed me, that my observations about what was happening with technology was probably right. But what I was discussing was 2, 5, 10 years out and that the resources would be wasted investing in the initiatives I was championing because we needed to make money now. We could worry about the changing landscape when we needed to deal with it. But not now. I was dismissed from some of those companies. And yet today, most all of them are NOW doing the things I was pushing for back 10 years ago, though many have not yet caught up. And some of them failed completely, at least in part (in my mind) because they never did follow through with some of the things I said we HAD to do. We should see more things like this, but it might be a few years before this happens. The moral of the story: Sometimes being a “futurist” is not always the best path to fame and fortune.)


Next reward is skin for Amara.

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