Do you think BL1 was the most balanced borderlands?

When I played it back in the day to the hardest playthrough on Mordecai, I remember having many weapons to choose from, I could still die but I still had sustainment, and it was just difficult enough to be enjoyable but not op like Iron bear right now in mayhem 10. Please correct me if I am wrong, but I think this was the best balance ever. TPS actually was not bad either. I can not even point out what made them balanced, those games just were. BL2 restricted you to slag, grog, everyone used the most powerful weapons like harold, bee, at some point despite their build focusing on something else. There was decent variety, but there was overlap with a lots of weapons and gear. It gets a lot of praise, but I think that’s just the sheer content and story talking. Feel free to speak your thoughts if you thought they weren’t as balanced as I remember, or if you know why they felt more balanced.

Add Pre-Sequel into the question. Was Pre-Sequel endgame balanced?


Considering how some lvl 12 gun carried me through the entire story, I don’t think BL1 was very balanced either.


Is it such a bad thing for weapon parts to be superior to weapon level?

It kinda destroys the point of looter shooters. I’d want a game like this to encourage/force me to switch to higher level stuff I find. I find it disappointing if nothing I find for hours throughout the story is really worth picking up.

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This was why they changed the loot system in BL2. There’s no sense of progression or point in looting if the same green AR is outperforming legendaries that are nominally 6 or more levels higher. Or if that low level Hellfire has parts that will carry you through Pt.1 and a good chunk of Pt.2.

The fact that this also applied to the weapons enemies could be carrying meant you could find yourself in trouble quite easily!


Fair enough, it’s been a while since I’ve played. I think maybe the argument can be made for pre-sequel though. Honestly my more favorite game in terms of builds, and I do not think it was as restrictive as BL2

TPS - the bast BL game in so many ways.


BL1 damage scaled linearly with level, which led to the issue that a great low level gun could outperform anything else you’d find 20 levels above. So in BL2 damage scaled exponentially, meaning that 6 levels higher always meant double damage. That was arguably a bit too much as BL2 weapons tended to get useless too quickly, and it led to absurd damage numbers like 3x30M on an OP10 Norfleet. I think TPS was the same, but I’m not sure and don’t quote me on this.

In BL3, it’s still an exponential increase, but it’s a little slower so that it takes 8 levels to double damage. I think that’s a pretty sweet spot, during levelling I found it hit the balance just right.

The problem with BL3 is the end game balancing they’re trying to do. I mean, M10 enemies get x100 HP right now. Just let that sink. They try to rebalance things by increasing some numbers, then they realise that was too far, so they increase other numbers because they’re too afraid of the backlash if they nerf things to hell. And so it goes up and up, and now enemies with x100 HP are pushovers and next they’re going to do Mayhem 15 with x500hp. And then, because that makes them too tanky, they’ll increase damage even more.

It’s got completely out of control. I think what this game needs is nerfing the f*ck out of everything to get it back to reasonable levels. But I’m afraid they’re too afraid of community backlash if they nerf stuff.


I think the loot system as far as determining weapon parts was the most fun in the original Borderlands, and I wish they had stuck with it in BL2.

Basically, in the original game, all weapon parts were randomized (also based on level) but also DETERMINED rarity level. So, it was the case that you could find a really high-scoring combination of weapon parts at a lower level that carried you through lots of the rest of the game, but that’s all tied up in the feeling of gambling and what true RNG really is.

In BL2, rarity level is rolled first and then determines weapon parts, at least is my understanding. You find yourself having to switch to higher level gear much more often, but it also removes and of the legit ‘gambling’ feeling that the original loot system provided in the first game. Every green level gun is the same, as every blue level gun is the same and so on, so on, so it’s not nearly as spicy.

As far as leveling, the first game really doesn’t do a good job of balancing things between progressing though the main story as well as completing side missions. If you are a completionist and do every side mission in the first game you will find yourself quickly overleved and every mission is trivial, for a long, long time. There are a few spots in the game where you can find yourself appropriately leveled and enjoy a good balance of reward and difficulty but actually not that many. So for level balancing I think BL2 did the best job.

When it comes to damage resistance and output scaling I’m sort of torn between BL1 and 2. I sort of love the insane high damage numbers that you get with UVHM in BL2. It also constantly forces you to ditch lower level gear no matter how good you think it is. And maybe that’s not a bad thing, if you take the long-view approach of basically anything is expendable that you pick up except those most coveted of guns that are worth farming for.


Nah. Best balance was probably in TPS. The thing with Borderlands 1 is, it was just so limited that you wouldn’t notice the major balancing flaws a lot of the time.
It also had some issues with how weapon proficiency inherently put revolvers and snipers at a disadvantage because their basic stats were so horrendously inaccurate and their rate of fire and ammo pool so poor, like you need to play for 10 hours basically just using snipers until the bullet will reliably hit where you aimed.
A lot of guns were simply horrible and it often felt like gun rarity had barely an impact, with low rarity items occasionally being strictly superior to a higher rarity counterpart, in spite of having the same manufacturer, level and weapon class.

I’d also like to point out that one of the main reasons why you feel less forced into a particular gear meta in Bl1 is because most of the really good stuff is either obnoxiously rare and hard to get (basically all pearls, hybrids etc) or there is just not a reliable way of farming them so whether you are gonna be using that Unforgiven Masher or that Bessie simply depends on whether you get it at some point.
The reason why so many Bl2 players are using the Harold, the Bee, the Fastball and the Grog is because it is really easy to get your hands on them without having to farm for hours on end, unless you are looking for literally perfect parts.


Nah, you are actually right. We don’t need huge numbers to simulate a difficulty and fit everything in the right spot. Making the game actually playable and healthy. Not too weak but also not too overpowered. Just right.

people often throw around balanced for TPS but game was so horribly easy due to cryo in game that i could not play longer than 4 months and i played all vhs. i can’t even name one challenging thing in that game. last round of clap dlc arena? ehhh nah

amen brudda

But it also meant that if you’d win the battle you could look forward to getting that awesome gun that was shredding you mere seconds ago.

I’m quite sad that they ditched that enemies would drop the weapon there were holding, very few things were more awesome than realizing that the enemy was holding a legendary and anticipating its drop.

I’ll never forget my first time when I found a really high level Repeater and couldn’t figure out why the damage was way lower than my rubbish underleveled version till I realized the insane fire rate of 20+, doesn’t matter how little damage it does when you can land 20-60 crits the instant you pull the trigger :star_struck:

I’ll put a vote in for the original game. I didn’t mind that some guns could carry you through a few levels - it meant if you found a gun you liked you could use it for a while, and given that there wasn’t much end game that was a good trade off. And you would eventually find a decent upgrade, you just weren’t forced into changing weapons, often for ones you really didn’t like, every 2-3 levels like you did in BL2.

The gun mechanics were better in the original game, too. Stompers really felt like they had some meat to them, while you had a genuine choice between DoT or straightforward bullet damage which gave you a lot of options for gear. Guns in *Borderlands * felt like guns with occasional side effects, while guns in BL2 were all about the effects and often didn’t even feel like guns at all.

For me the system they changed to for BL2 was a definite downgrade. They’re back on track a bit with BL3 and generally I think they have a nice balance there.



Could win just by standing still.

(Okay, I’m exaggerating. A bit. But not much.)

Did that with Maya after the Cloud Kill buff a few times.

You could do something similar with Aurelia if you dropped back down to NVHM, but that always felt like cheating.

I think you nailed it. BL3 has a lot of fun in normal mode, and it’s early game is probably better than the other borderlands games. but it’s the mayhem endgame that is crazy. I think my original post was more about the endgame rather than the early game. If I remember correctly, BL1 endgame and BLTPS endgame felt better to me. It was difficult but not crazy bullet spongey for many guns. Obviously there were the best guns for each character, but there were substitutes that got the job done decently well. I think BL3 has the issue where there are many guns that really don’t cut it. At least to me, I only play moze so I can’t speak for other vault hunters, but many guns that should work don’t. Super shreddifier moze, terrible, ogre moze, terrible, they should be decent mobbing weapons but they aren’t. At least that was before 6/25 patch, idk about now. If anybody got those weapons to mob decently, lmk :slight_smile:

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I recently got an M10 Orge world drop with 125% fire damage annoint and it sucks ass. You’d think because the Ogre i got combines kenetic and fire damage it’d be good against shields and melt flesh but nope. The Lob I got with the same annoint combines cyro and fire damage and melts through shields way faster, in addition to armor and flesh.

I’d say Borderlands 1 definitely was closer to ideal than most of the other installments.

Borderlands 2 did so much right, but I don’t think it was developed with an actual idea of where Gearbox wanted the cap. Plus I don’t think they predicted OP levels and UVHM regen causing such an inflation.

TPS, I suspect they went at it with a slightly better approach. Knowing they didn’t want as harsh of a scaling curve as 2, but not just a copy of Borderlands 1.

Borderlands 3 felt pretty good for leveling through a lot of it. I had my doubts as soon as M4 looked to be inflating health to artificially pad fight times, and as soon as I heard what M10 was I worried it was going to never stop, health climbing an insane amount to bloat every fight.

I don’t know for certain, but @billthebetta or @Stouty22 might have a better knowledge on this, didn’t DoT do some weird scaling thing with player level?

Honestly, I loved this feature. The amount of times I’d panic when I heard a Lance troop with the whooping of the General Knoxx Eridian blues was always a fun thing.
Never see the shot coming, you’d just burst into flames or see acid burst around you.

I never felt forced into using a handful of items for Borderlands 1, I often used all Eridian stuff, for fun.
TPS I could use a lot more stuff because why not.
Borderlands 2, and now 3, I feel I needed to use specific items or builds and I don’t get to just mess around with quirky and gimmicky stuff at a level with some challenge but not hobbled by Modifiers.

(I haven’t played 3 since end of April however. Time hasn’t been something I’ve had the luxury of)