Why do some people dislike Borderlands The Pre-Sequel?

I didn’t dislike all of TPS, but enough of it wasn’t good enough.

The characters were amazing, especially Athena and Wilhelm, they were brilliantly designed. The Oz kits were great, floating and butt slamming was a fantastic mechanic, especially on Athena who could make the most use out of butt slams. Did I mention that I loved Athena? My favourite melee character in Borderlands so far. Lasers were amazing too, good Ol’ Rosie. And the Excalibastard, which was great on Athena.

No Norfleets or Infinity or Bee, ah what a godsend, no more mindless noobs coming into my lobby just shamfleeting everything or dying every three seconds with The Bee and Infinity on every character.

Then there were the long dialogue moments that really dragged on the otherwise short story. The lack of side quests comparable to BL2. The lack of endgame content. Seriously, the one raid boss was just a slightly harder version of the final story boss. Only one campaign!? What an insult that 2/4 season pass DLC were just characters. At least Timothy was unique and interesting, Aurelia was just another boring sniper class. UHVM felt very watered down too, I was so used to regenerating enemies and OP8 that the lack of those two things made TPS feel easy. I get that UVHM in BL2 was very difficult for new players, but in TPS it was only slightly harder than TVHM.

Other notes, I was a fan of the Holodome. It was difficult, featured bosses and a unique enemy, and a replayable badass round. It was no Murderlin’s Temple, and IMO should’ve been in the vanilla game or accompanied by the Claptastic Voyage, but I thought it was solid and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I was a fan of slag, again in the minority here I think, cryo sucked. Maybe if both were in TPS I’d have enjoyed it more, but where slag was necessary to play through BL2 UVHM, cryo was optional. Again, TPS UVHM just felt easy.

In summary, TPS had some cool new mechanics but left out some core ones from BL2. The biggest letdown was the short story and lack of endgame content, it felt like I had no reason to farm loot other than for The Holodome. If the game had Oz kits and butt slams with slag and cryo, a longer story or at least more quests and raids, and an actually difficult UVHM, I’d have enjoyed it a lot more.

Edit: After discussing it on another topic I realise I forgot to mention the grinder. At first I loved it, then I saw how easy it was to set up a grinding factory with four players and abuse the ■■■■ out of it. Even solo you could manipulate it and use it to grind otherwise difficult to farm loot. It took away the incentive to farm, which is a big part of the first two Borderlands games, and I grew to hate it.

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It took me awhile to begin to appreciate TPS for what it is and not directly compare it to BL2, which I now think isn’t entirely fair. I do think that TPS improves on the formula in many ways (skill trees, low-grav, the Stingray, the Doppelganger as a playable character), but it also misses the mark in other areas (map design, no real farming, no end-game beyond Claptrap’s DLC and HOW IN THE WORLD did they miss that bit?!?).

I’m currently dragging my first FR4G-TP thru UVHM and it’s actually a lot of fun and I’m looking forward to taking him into Claptrap’s DLC…I’m hoping that his comments will live up to my expectations.

Weirdo aside - Felicity’s accent makes me think inappropriate thoughts whenever I’m in that part of the game. I’ve always had a minor thing for women with British accents, and Felicity’s voice is approaching sex on wheels AFAIC.


Sex on mechanical spider legs and thrust vectoring.


Or that.

It still kinda disturbs me that she ends the way she does, TBH.

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Interesting question I was asking myself lately, as I’m trying to finish TPS again. It’s my least favorite installment: BL1>BL2>TPS.

Someone already mentioned ‘platformer’ aspect - it’s definitely a turn-off for me, maps/combat are more 3D and it takes time to adjust (still work in progress). Too many context switches between low gravity, no O2 etc. scenario. Too much of a mental load compared to “shoot and loot” formula I learned to love.

Too many confusing maps: how the heck do I get to Point A from Point B and where is that damn exit?

Story is kind of ‘meh’, and so is music. IMHO, of course.

Humor, accents, guns, character design/skills - not a problem for me. I’m happy TPS exists, it just did not grab me as much as previous two.


Too many, or not enough? :stuck_out_tongue:

Joking aside, there seems to be at least one of those maps in every game. For example:

  • Borderlands 1
    • Sanders Gorge
    • Jakobs Cove
  • Borderlands 2
    • Frostburn Canyon
    • Lair of Infinite Agony
  • Pre-Sequel
    • Veins of Helios
    • Lunar Launching Station

Did I miss any?

Right, let me refine my theory then: BL1 had both of these confusing maps in DLC, BL2 had one of them in DLC, and TPS has both of them in main game. So, I suspect more navigational frustration in the main story for TPS.

Scylla’s Grove. Where the ■■■■ did that pissy skag go again!?

Eridium Blight gets a bit like that too when you stray off the beaten path or try to find Jack’s grandma’s house for the first time.

Edit: Sawtooth Cauldron is a bit mazey if you don’t know your way around.


I think what that tells us is that some level designers are more into multi-level mazes than others!

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The cutscenes take too long ( first playthrough is fine but multiple playthroughs feels like forever) and I don’t really like Handsome Jack.

I keep playing it cause the gameplay…and being able to jump really high.

There are a number of ways level designers and artists have come up with to indicate the level you’re currently on, and levels above and below you. That’s what I’m looking forward to if there are new multi-level mazes.

You are under a couple of misconceptions.
While I can’t speak for the rest of the world, here in the USA, Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel was heavily hyped before launch

((Those of us who bought the “deluxe” edition of the game were promised dlc’s that were never delivered and this is probably the number one reason the game is disliked. ))

EDIT: The above information is incorrect. There was no “deluxe” edition. You just pre-ordered the season pass and no “story” was promised. Just 4 dlc packs Eurogamer

Think of it like buying the collectors edition of Borderlands 2 but instead of getting the 4 story dlc’s you got The Sir hammerhead dlc, Gaige, Krieg, and the pre-order only arena mode GameSpot offered.

After the initial sales failure 2k shuttered 2kOz, in order to fulfill the minimum requirements of the DLC pre-purchases via collectors editions Gearbox proper took over and finished development of Claptraps Fantast Voyage and the extra dlc characters were slotted into what was innitially reported as story dlc.

I don’t see how you are coming to that conclusion.

This is incorrect. You may not remember or have even played it when it first launched but there were several problems with it. I will list the biggest here:

1.) Patches & Fixes were put on the back burner. In my opinion, this is what killed the game. It was a mess at launch and instead of fixing it they focused on DLC. It had poor performance, choppy framerate, and broken missions at launch.

2.) Leveling - Leveling in the game is horrible. Sadly this is something that could have been fixed but wasn’t. It was adjusted and is better then launch, but even today you could kill everything you run across, turn in every mission, get every bonus, and still be underleveled by the time you get to Zarpadon. That’s on the first playthrough. It’s even worse on subsequent playthroughs. I was level 24 when I finished all the missions and had to grind 2 levels before I could kill Zarpadon. In TVH I was 38 when I finished all the missions.

3.) Game Pacing - This was another big issue. You have huge areas with nothing to do. Poor mission design choices. Like, Missions that have you zig zagging from one end of the map to the other with very little payout, timed quests that are almost impossible to solo, gathering quests handed out way too late in the game, etc…

4.) Uninspired and insufficient gear that can’t be farmed. In the beginning bosses could not be farmed. Let that sink in. You could not farm bosses in a Borderlands game. When they fixed this, you couldn’t farm the big bad. This made it near impossible to get some of the best skins, heads, & weapons in the game. Honestly, they never fixed Zarpadons drops until the Handsome Collection was released.

5.) it was a love letter to Australia - While not bad, per say, it was too niche. Much of the humor went over most peoples heads. Many of the references and wink wink moments did to. It wasn’t funny to us, and what was clever game choices that tied into Oz culture just looked like weird choices.

Let’s take RedBelly for example. His legs are his crit points. Most of us thought it was a Master Blaster reference from Mad Max. The boss makes no sense but once you learn he is an homage to Ned Kelly (an infamous Australian bushman and worth a read) it clicks.

The game is full of moments like that.

6.) Most of the legendary weapons could not be farmed. The grinder makes this a bit of a mute point but it is true none the less. Most legendaries were world drops and not farmable.

7.) Bad boss fights. Many of the boss fights were just tedious and not very fun for many people.

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We were told from the beginning that two of the season pass DLCs would be characters, nobody was misled. The fact that two DLCs were characters and one was an arena is something that was not received well by the community, but nobody was misled, everyone just expexcted a DLC package like BL2.

I may be misremembering, but IIRC GBX was always going to do CFV themselves, just like how they outsourced the first three DLCs for BL2 but made TTAoDK.

I played from release and had all four characters at level 50 before the first DLC was revealed, and this was never a part of my experience.

This is the worst complaint I’ve ever heard. I’ve played with plenty of Americans and Europeans who got a lot of the jokes, and some who didn’t, and some Europeans who don’t get the jokes in American games, and even some Americans who don’t get the jokes and references in American games. The world is not one country, complaining that a game primarily made in Australia has Australian references that you don’t understand is ludicrous. I still don’t understand why Mario is an Italian plumber fighting magic turtles to win the favour of a blonde princess named after a fruit, all made by Japan. Who cares.


When I read the fine print before pre-ordering, the “four DLCs” were listed as a campaign, an arena, and two extra playable characters. Which is what shipped. You can argue that some of those items aren’t what you would consider DLCs - I’ve seen all sorts of arguments both ways on what counts as such - but we all got exactly what was advertised.


2 posts were split to a new topic: Pre-Sequel Angst

That debate was getting way too personal.

Since the history of 2KAus shuttering, Luxy’s whatever being dropped because it was decided to do Clappy’s Voyage instead, and everything else is all well in the public realm, I think we can safely leave all that behind and move on.



I think your post answers some of your own questions. When people say “Game A sucks”, they usually mean “It’s not as good as Game B”. If BL2 is a much better game, then TPS automatically “sucks” in comparison.

Now, I’m going to be cantankerous and answer a slightly different question: Why didn’t I even buy the game until a couple months ago?

  1. Handsome Jack in BL2 was, by far, the most terribly-written, obnoxious, unbelievable villain in video game history. As such, I was extremely reluctant to waste time on a game all about him.
  2. In TPS, you play the bad guys, and I generally don’t have much interest in that kind of roleplay.
  3. What does “pre-sequel” even mean?
  4. It’s not even made by Gearbox. It has to suck!

Now that I’ve played it, what do I think?

  1. Jack was written well in TPS, wasn’t the bad guy until the end, and Zarpedon didn’t suffer from all the problems BL2 Jack did.
  2. I picked Athena since she was the only character with any real face time in previous games who wasn’t Claptrap. And because she wasn’t really a bad guy. I think it helped a lot that Athena happens to be the narrator of the main story, but I really enjoyed how they wrote the story so the main characters were helping the bad guy without inherently being the bad guys themselves.
  3. In retrospect, it obviously means it’s the prequel to BL2 and the sequel to BL1. Probably could have just Googled that. Though Borderlands 1.5 sounds better to me.
  4. I think it had all the ridiculous “charm” of a Borderlands game, and I loved how the Australian influence made Elpis feel like we really weren’t just on Pandora in space, but in a completely different culture. Who cares who “really” made it?

So even though all my hesitations were ultimately unfounded (for me), I heard a lot of people talk about those things as issues they had problems with in the game.

Having not played past the first playthrough, I’m not really qualified to comment on any kind of end game. I’m going to get my BL2 siren to 80 then probably go back and run the second playthrough of TPS on Athena. But I’ve really enjoyed the speed and movement in combat. Going back to BL2 feels a little clunky.

One thing I wish they’d done better is the O2 requirements. I only ran out of oxygen three times during the game. Once was boost jumping a lot in combat without remembering I was out of atmosphere. The other two were standing around taking screenshots of Pandora and Helios to compare their sizes in degrees to screenshots of Elpis and Helios from Pandora to get relative distances between the bodies. And in none of those cases was I even close to death when I got back to oxygen.

I liked the Metroid Prime 2 gameplay where you mostly had to sprint from light bubble to light bubble early on to avoid death, then you got to come back and explore all the side areas later in the game when you upgraded your suit.

I skipped killing stuff when I backtracked across maps for fetch quests, but otherwise I killed most things and ran all the side missions as I got to them. I saved the DLC until after the main story, and was level 27 when I killed the level 26 Zarpedon, level 29 when I killed the level 29 end boss from the main game, and level 35 when I killed the level 36 end boss in the Claptrap DLC.

If you just run straight through the main story, you’ll definitely be underleveled, but it’s that way in BL2 as well. I skipped most optional content on my mechromancer and beat the level 30 Warrior at level 27.

BL2 does overlevel you if you complete all the content, but I didn’t feel TPS leveling was bad for the first playthrough.

I don’t remember even failing a timed mission. Or any timed missions that weren’t optional.

Kill Meg is optional and I don’t even remember seeing the timer tick down before killing the boss. Pop Racing is optional and I had 18 seconds left on my first try with zero planning or knowledge of the mission. Recruitment Drive is optional, and I had 39 seconds left, again on my first try with no planning.

I can understand someone failing the driving missions on the first try or two if they’re bad at navigation, but they’re really not hard if you put a little thought into learning the routes.

The BL2 timed missions were about the same; the only one there that was at all challenging was the Tier 3 Death Race from the Torgue campaign, and even it can be beaten solo with the slowest vehicle, no Afterburner relic, and no exploits of any kind.

I think the point was that many BL1 and BL2 players are American, and many Americans felt out of place in the Australian humor, and it makes sense that many such players would have less enjoyment of a game they don’t get than one they do get.

It’s not an American reference so much as a 90s D&D reference, but I immensely enjoyed the Tiny Tina DLC from BL2 precisely because I used to play quite a bit of D&D. Picking up the Magic Missile and wondering where the darkness was, then finding out there actually is a Darkness to cast Magic Missile on would be completely lost on someone else, while it made me a tiny bit giddy.

It doesn’t make TPS a bad game. It just means I maybe didn’t enjoy it as much as I would if it was more American with its jokes and references. I’m still not sure who or what the cricket mission was making fun of. (Which probably means it was making fun of me.)

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TPS is kind of a love/hate thing with me. After playing BL2 for a while I fell in love with Jacobs weapons. Of course my first and fave charater was Nisha, and I still have a lot of fun playing her. BUT the thing that bugs me the most is the Flayer. That is and was the only new weapon I was interested in acquiring for my Nisha. Well, after playing 2 characters (Nisha and Jack’s Dopp) to max level 70, for hundreds of hours, I have still yet to get one to drop for me. I have killed thousands of virus enemies in the Motherless board too many times to count, attempted countless grinds to no avail … So I felt like the game gave me the middle finger after a while so I decided to return the favor and stopped playing it for a couple years. Recently started playing again and still haven’t seen one execpt youtubers raving about how awesome it is. Kinda makes me just want to play something else, anything else that i find more fun than frustrating.

The Flayer is probably one of the harder farms in TPS; only one source and (I believe) part of a large’ish loot pool from that source. I don’t think it’s available from the grinder in any case, but I could be wrong there. I can say that I too have way too may hrs into farming one for myself with (so far) zero success.

You can get it from Grinder, the same as other CV’s legendaries.