"I love you Battleborn, but why don't you love me?" A new player's take on the Free Trial experience

It is a very frustrating experience. Well, that’s my TL;DR version for you folks who are busy with things to do in life, but for the rest of you, I invite you to read on. :grinning:

I started playing this game approximately 9 days ago on pc. It was a blast for me. I checked the price on Steam. It felt a bit pricey but… I could see myself picking it up if I managed to get my friends interested.

Here lies my problem. My group wanted to take a break from the MMOs to try something else. Nothing too shooting-based or pvp-centric either. I sang Battleborn’s praises so high that it would embarrass myself on other days. I raved about the large number of melee chars and hybrid melee-shooter ones. I talked about the very well, fleshed out characters that grows on you. I played down the pvp by pointing out it has a fun Vs Bots mode and unlockable sub-campaigns using in-game coins. I told my friends, all of whom have splashed a lot to buy cosmetics stuff in MMOs, that Battleborn also has the same cosmetics and loot which could interest them to grind or buy. But inwardly, I felt that it wasn’t enough to convince my friends who are so used to seeing the sheer number of F2P games in the current market.

With reluctance, I also came clean to my friends about the declining player base. I told them of my own experience, how I waited for an hour (or three) to get a match in a queue separated by novice and veteran ranks. I had the patience to wait the queue because I have read 30+ Battleborn-related online reviews (most of which compared Battleborn vs Overwatch and gloated how the latter killed its competitor) prior to downloading the free trial, and so have been forewarned about the waiting times. The same however, may not apply to my friends or many of the free trial players.

I’m one of those people with lousy patience but I was willing to give Battleborn every single chance. I related in another thread about how I waited 10 hours in queue for a non-existent match, on a Sunday to boot. In any other game, I would declare the game dead and moved on but I thought there could be some sort of hidden explanation here. I began to suspect that apart from separating the novice and normal queues, the game also split the novice queues into two - the first for CR 1 to CR 9 and the second for CR 10 to CR 19. The first only gets access to Overgrowth and Echelon but the second queue unlocks Monuments plus other modes.

Using a common practice in MMOs, I booted up my second pc, created a new Battleborn free trial account and voila , the new account can get into games where my main account at CR 12 couldn’t. They had separate lobbies. I wanted to play and in frustration, I linked my main account to the new account’s lobby and finally got to play some matches. But it felt wrong. It felt like an abuse. It also puts my team at a disadvantage at 4 vs 5 (even though the 5 are bots, they are still a challenge for new players). But I don’t see any other way out, not with the current state of queues. Without this, I would be stuck at CR 12 and many others would be stuck around CR 2. I shamelessly told myself that I was also giving other newbies the games that they needed to rank.

I came to Battleborn pretty late and during the declining part of the Free Trial period. Clearly nothing has been done to halt the loss of free trial players, even though obvious causes have been pointed out by many. To me, it seemed that whomever is running the game is being paralyzed with indecision.

I would like to give my two cents on possible ways to retain free trial players (and to get new players interested! cough my friends cough):

  • If there exists two queues for novices, merge them. Heck, there’s also a thread urging the merge of novice bots battle with normal bots battle, and I’m all for that. I would have liked to play with veteran players on my first day, and having them teach me the basics of the Incursion mode. Now that I have reached the normal queues, I would also like to return to novice queues to guide newer players.

  • Lower the required rank for novices to ‘graduate’ to normal queues. As it is now, novices couldn’t get enough matches to go up. I am currently at CR 22 but I would not have gotten here without the abuse method I described earlier. I believe that the number of free trial players who managed reach CR 20 on their own is a pitiful few, based on my own experience.

  • CR1 players should get to play all modes from the go, or at least access to the Monuments map. It is my favourite Incursion map by far, as it features a subterranean level and some high platforms to jump around.

  • The option to play single player with bots teammates, available immediately at CR1. This allows new players to properly test new heroes as the current Incursion training mode is inadequate and too short. Would also be the preferred mode for pve-centric players.

That’s all for now I guess, time to go back to the frustrating queue. Some online reviews have called this game ‘dead’, but I think Battleborn is far from it as it hasn’t exhausted all its options yet. The people in charge must show the initiative and courage to tweak the free trial experience on a month-by-month basis if needs be, until you see a healthy population increase.


From what I’ve heard, at this point the novice queues are doing more harm than good, and I’m getting very nervous that they’re going to start turning more players off than straight-up PvP.

Let newbies into Bots Battle on teams with vets, maybe they can pick up some tips. Then open up full PvP after level 20 or so.


But that’s hard work.

How will hard work get that microtransactions money?

I’ll be serious. Your post was needed in June when free trial became a thing, so GBX would know what they should incorporate before free trial players began scrounging the graveyards.

Now? With population less than 200 on PC, almost everything is no longer worth the investment. I’m not saying they shouldn’t try to make the experience better because the free trial players can’t even play Bots Battle properly, but the damage is so severe that with the state the game is in I don’t think it’s a priority.

Because, you know, getting more players doesn’t equate to more microtransactions.

I believe their priority is the marketplace so people are funding Borderlands 3.


:cry::sob: come to ps4 we are a lot of players and a good community.

Im so sad when i read this kind of pc experience


Wrote something like this already on reddit. I was already thinking about switching platforms, but I had to buy a PS4 or XBox One for that, I had to pay for the respective online service and I would lose over a year’s worth of progress in addition to my preorder and founder status, just to play that one game which I also had to pay for again and which I had to learn from scratch again (I can’t play first person games with a controller …).

This is too much of an investment in time and money for me. I’m sorry. :frowning:


I have also considered switching to PS4.

Have to ask tho, I’m very curious, why does BB have a better PS4 community?
BL2 has a great PC community, always did, still does.

For me the biggest bummer has been the dual connections, BB has puked hundreds of times over the past 14 months.


I know is to much :disappointed_relieved: a lot of $$ specially if you dont live in usa.

But you dont have to worry about gear/lvls those are easy to obtain.

About founder and pre order status… Gbx should make something about it as they must compensate the console migration.


First… We are more…?

Second we have a couple of chats to find ppl to play with and socialize. A lot of “skilled” players are willing to help/train you.

I guess is just the fact that we find more new players/matches and ppl to be a community.


I’ve done research to fully understand why Battleborn’s player base isn’t as high as anticipated and the answer I’ve been getting was “Gearbox shouldn’t have put it’s released date near Overwatch’s”, Clearly indicating it was another fault on Gearbox’s behalf. However Battleborn’s originally released date was intended to be on February 6th, 2016. The reason it got pushed to May was because the information they got from the Closed Technical Test told them that game wasn’t fully done yet.

Now another reason I found out why the player base is low is Duke Nukem Forever and Colonial Marines. Those are pretty obvious but the question I have regarding them is Why when Borderlands 2 and the Pre-Sequel were getting hyped up nobody said anything relating to Colonial Marines and Duke Nukem where when Battleborn was getting hyped people starting bringing those up again? I have no answer for that though I tried looking for one.

Now the last reason I figured out is that it’s not Borderlands 3. Simply put that those who are enjoying Borderlands 2 and the Pre-Sequel were waiting ecstatically for Borderlands 3 to come out so when they heard that Gearbox were making a game that isn’t Borderlands 3 some of the people that enjoyed Borderlands 2 and the Pre-Sequel pretty much just didn’t care about Battleborn.

Sorry for the HUGE essay but kee in mind that this is what I just found while doing my research in the internet which can sometimes but untrustworthy but eh.


Those are a few of the reasons why, yeah. Someone could probably write their economic thesis on all the reasons together though.


Indeed… Like many balance isseus in close beta- open beta and first day.


That’s a very big part of it, yeah. First impressions being important and all.


New player here and i got to say the game is amazing, so glad i tried it, just makes me sad that i can not find any online matches. Im really hoping that things pick up, im passing the word around to all my friends to try this game but with the matchmaking issue not sure if they will stick around.


:cry::sob: yes plz! Tell everyone who listen!!

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pc I assume?

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We’ve got the discord which is better than the console player made communities imo.



yes im on pc, will i have a better chance of getting in a online game if im cr20?

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It’s a little bit better in the normal queues (if you can play at peak times), but not that much sadly. :frowning:

A little advice: You will meet people in PvP who played the game for a lot longer than you. You will probably play many games where you feel like you absolutely can’t do anything (I’ve played for 500 hours and still have that problem). Don’t worry about that too much.

I’ve written a small guide here how you can train the basic concepts in this game in bot matches, maybe try that. Never feel shy to ask high command rank people for advice on how to improve your gameplay. Most people I met in this game are very helpful, they give you tips what you can change with your build and playstyle, some even go the extra mile to invite you to sparring sessions (if you have purchased the game and can join private sessions) or invite you to play with them.

Don’t spit poison at anyone and know when you were defeated in a fair game. You will notice pretty fast then that the community we have (even if it is a pretty small one) contains some of the nicest people you can imagine!

It’s only a game, don’t take anything that happens in a match personal. :wink:


Thanks for the tips, i’m pretty laid back when it comes to gaming.