The Pretty Backgrounds Thread

To me, the most underrated part of Battleborn is the art design itself, and, specifically, that of the backgrounds.

They serve their purpose, but when you take time to really soak in the landscape, either on the icy world of Bliss or the smoky, gloomy world of Tempest, it’s hard to argue that, man, these backgrounds are really something!

Lately, a pet project of mine has been taking pictures of the backgrounds and, when you do so, you find that these weren’t just hastily put together for the sake of it, that these backgrounds have so much depth to them.

So, to the art team at Gearbox, you guys rule, and in celebration of that, I thought I would post up the photographs I have taken. Note, not all maps and episodes are below, but if you would like to, you can add them here.

Note: I really love the design of the clouds on Tempest, like this one. Another one that comes to mind (which I don’t have a photograph of) is the beginning of The Sabatour, which has excellent cloud designs!

Note: On Outback. I don’t think I noticed this fossil before, or of I did, I didn’t take time to really look at it.


Note: The fact the sky is full of these floating pyramids is something, but even more impressive is the fact a lot of them seem to have been uprooted from the ground.

To me, ZIGGURAT calls back to the days of Crash Bandicoot and old school games that had secret areas. This whole world is being uprooted from the looks of things, and it adds a real mystical feeling to the game. Also, we need a map with secret entrances. K?

Note: Weirdly shaped mountain.

Note: This is on Horizon. There’s, of course, the massive fighting Transformers but to me the part I like the most is this swamp down at the ground and those weird cotton candy trees. Not sure they’re edible though.

Note: Outskirts, which is also at Tempest. Unlike the other Tempest maps, this one is lighter. I couldn’t get a photograph of it, but at the shards where the first grinders are, there’s a massive entrance of some sort. There, you’ll find some atmospheric lightning that is very cool to look at!

Note: Not really a background, as such, but a part of the stronghold in AaTTR has this dam that I always love.

Note: Far off in the distance, you can make out a small temple. Pretty neat!

Note: Again, these uprooted floating bridges, this time on Bliss. Notice they have Japanese architecture?

If I end up getting more, I’ll add them here. Which brings to mind, wouldn’t it be great if Battleborn had a photo-mode? Or, better yet, a published art book maybe?

I know looking at pretty backgrounds isn’t everyone’s favourite pass time. Most people are just intent on spilling as much blood as possible or gaining points to win the round, but I thought I would share these just because I have nowhere else to put them.

If @Jythri could point me in the direction to the people in charge of these backdrops, I’ll buy them a beer. How much beer does an organic drink? Twelve gallons?

If you have a favourite background, why don’t you let me know?


Every game should have a photo mode. That’s why I spent more than 40h doing super eye-candy screenshots in Mad Max’s photo mode.

Battleborn has some very awesome screenshotable views, but the UI and large guns/hands/weapons are just a big no-no.


Totally agree, this could be a beautiful shot:



Didn’t they win an award for art design?

1 Like

The beautiful photo mode in the ultra-beautiful Horizon Zero Dawn added an entirely new level of awesome to the game for me, as I am rather serious amateur photographer myself.

Uncharted 4 has one, also!

Great thread @ripley !

In observer mode, you can fly out into these backgrounds and discover there’s more hiding behind it, by the way. It’s all geometry hovering around in the sky.


I never knew this. I’ll check it out!

Very pretty geometry at that.

Perhaps if you flew in into it, it will send you into orbit like the rest of the game’s geometry.

I used to have Ekkunar backgrounds as my desktop wallpapers. They’re both Sunless Sea wallpapers now, but I’m still rather fond of the Ekkunar ones. I might switch back sometime.

I play as Pendles sometimes just so I can run around and get screenshots of the various backdrops and other beautiful things in the game. I swear I feel like I am looking up or down more than straight in front of me half the time.


I’d have to credit a lot of people. Really our environment art and level design team.

Scott Kester, our art director, drove most of the vision. He’s a genius, and it was my distinct fortune and pleasure to work with him on both BL2 and Battleborn.

A few others I could mention:
Chris Neeley, Jacob Christopher, Graeme Timmins. About another twenty names that I can’t recall offhand.


What’s interesting about that is that we actually use some very clever post-processing to flatten the LOD geometry in the distance to create that artistic, surreal flattened look to distant objects. It’s a key point of the Battleborn style.


I noticed that especially in story missions where the maps are bigger, the way the long-distance load is treated is excellent. Mad props.

1 Like

It always frustrates me when ppl tell me they didn’t like Battleborn because of the art style. It’s so freaking good!

I would take an artistic/cartoony looking game over a hyper realistic shooter any day! :ok_hand:

1 Like

…The world is like that, I’d tell you how freakin good it is being Vegan but you’d digress.

1 Like


Observer mode?



I’m vegan too and I have no idea what you’re talking about :stuck_out_tongue:

When beginning a private match, swap teams until you end up in observer mode. Then you can swoop about

1 Like

(*) PvP Only, which I imagine would require a minimum of 3 people to use it. I would love to be able to just load up ANY map and fly around as one of these with a built-in camera mode for taking screenshots.


[edit] Idea: @jythri why not make a piece of cosmetic only gear that adds a little remote controlled pet drone for taking aerial screenshots? Make it something you buy from the marketplace for platinum.


So is being “The Red-Bar Observer” when you lag around in flight? :smirk:


…What I meant was, anything can be picked to illustrate that people are divided on topics.
Nobody should be surprised that anyone is against the Art style in Battleborn even if all of us enjoy it.

1 Like