To be transparent, I’m a PS4 player. I like looter-shooter games and I don’t mind the farming process. I think thousands of hours of Diablo 2 and 3 (which I still play at lest one class each season start) it says it all. And yet I have less and less calling for Borderland 3. So, I tried to see what bothers me. I’ll not give much details as I think all are experienced by all players by now.
Except the pompous name, there is no significant difference from Normal. Going through this with all 4 characters is one of the most boring and unrewarding activity I did in a triple A games in many years. A simple higher quality rewards from main story, a few additional side quests only in this mode, and a higher loot drop chance it would make the journey forth it.
I know, Mayhem 2.0 is on the way. I will just say that, as soon as is more approachable M4 than M3, it says it all.
I know it’s a PvE game and detailed balance is not a must. However, the differences are too big. And a basic thing applied by the games since 3 generations back is missing: survivability vs. damage output. This is totally unbalance. I’m not going here to explain here for each class. I’ll just say that the efficiency of combat healing for each class is totally off-balance vs. the damage output. For me Fl4k is the worst on healing capabilities, especially on rakk. Bosses, low density combats are OK, otherwise he’s struggling.
Moze is fun. The main problem with her for me is that she does not have a fast pace tree. Iron Bear is so weak still vs. other classes action skill damage output. There is single build that can make IB viable. But IB is in each tree! You have no way around it, which is bad on so many levels. Amara: Slam, Cast, Grasp; Fl4k: Fade, Rakk, Gamma; Zane: Barrier, STNL; Clone; Moze: IB, IB, IB. This in the condition where demolition have such a big range. Turrets, Explosive Nets, Airstrike, Cover fire, Mortar, Bazooka, Heavy cannon, Tanks… You got the point! How cool would be the action skill to be a heavy cannon that when it shoots even the grass stops growing? And it can be augmented with fire, ice or radiation. A build with faster pace than IB.
The menu is so slow. IB in/out takes ages, Until rakk animation is finished your life is half at best (unless stay 1 km away of the enemy). Until barrier is picked after deployed during combat takes seconds. On classic controller layout, 50% of the time it brings the correct weapon only after pressing 4-5 times, which in combat is stressful when happens. There is a clear drop in responsiveness the more effects and foes are on the map.
No builds management
The fact that we need to pay for resetting the build is one of the worst development decision for this game. It’s by definition a game that revolves around experimenting and playing with builds. Why penalize us for playing as intended? You should let us play how we want. You like us to have a challenge? Fine!, Add contents that do not allow us to change the build once started, like the raid.
We need a way to save our builds and load it at will. I think 3 slots per class will do the trick. Resetting and trying another build we should be able to do it anywhere (unless in a restricted activity).
No farming mode
This is called Adventure Mode in Diablo. It will solve so many issues we have now with farming. In this mode you could add additional check-points, add a switch for instance reset which will allow us to farm without the save/load process which is on console 80-90% of the total farming time. In this mode you ca add from server so many additional activities and surprises, while story line may follow a different path.
I will not mind to make my way to the boss in Athene and suddenly to have Malliwan special forces team to appear to try ruin my day. When defeated, surely we are rewarded. Even more, you can add community events where up to 10 players can meet to take down a fortress or a vault monster that appears through a rift in space-time triggered by the Destroyer’s death or something.
The map of Captain Hunt is now unused for no reason. Why not to be a permanent event, like a mini raid? In a week is infested by wild life, in another by malliwan, in another by CoV and so on. Surely, with the possibility to reset the event when fast travel at the beginning. You can add more of these maps and rotate randomly between. Or, until then, the same, and never know what mobs you get each time.
No real End Game
Same say that farming is a valid end game activity. I personally disagree. Farming is a mean to improve your efficiency and capability to do the end game activity. In Diablo is the chase for a higher greater rift and to reach first in the lather board. You want to do that 100 level Great Rift to see your name there. In Borderlands 3 farming leads to…
Proving Grounds , even buffed a little bit, are not an end game activity. Are not worth it and are not rewarding still. Dedicated drops are once in a blue moon and when are chest rewards, will be every single time with the worst legendary and the most common ones in the game. You do not have the feeling that you beat an end game event but another random badass.
Malliwan Takedown: is the closest for an end game event but is the only one. Should I say that the dedicated M4 specific loot drop is maybe 0.01% change to which you add all other RNGs? We need far more activities like this to keep us busy. Being only one, it becomes boring, especially when the floor is always and over and over again filled with pretty much the same common legendary that no one will ever used unless a miracle happens and a patch will make it good.
The fact that with each patch and hotfix something else is messed-up in the game is well known. Having so many issues to fix and so many balance to do (some that comes with nerfs that defies any logic) we actually don’t know what is planned for us. Not even high level. You know, something official. In a way I get it. With so many resources needed to fix things, you cannot know when you can use them to actually create things.
I think the community still waits to see why worth staying with B3 and not go back to B2 (which say a lot) or other games.
No manufacturer bonuses
I think this would make us bring some variation for the weapons of choice. Some small bonuses for using 3 or 4 items from the same manufacturer to bring some bonuses. E.g. General on 3 items 30% magazine size increase. Then specific at 3 and at 4 of the same manufacturer. You can even limit like bonus for 3 activated in M3 while both for 3 and 4 items of the sme manufacturer it activates in M4.
Ideas as I write this post: Atlas: 3 - critical automatically apply homing shots for 5s, cooldown 8s; 4 - all homing hits are critical for 5s. Jakobs: 3 - every 3rd consecutive hit is guaranteed critical, 4 – critical ricochet are increased by 1; Vladof: 3 – every 3rd consecutive hit reloads 3 bullets from magazine, 4 – every 3rd consecutive hit does double damage; Malliwan: 3 – charging is decrease by 75%, 4 – 50% reload, projectiles speed and splash damage increase; Teodore: 3 – base and splash damage increase by 20%, 4 – throw kills spawn 4 MIRV homing to nearest target.
Grenades and Shields lack of diversity and utility
At first glance, one will say that there are many to chose from. But is absolutely false. If I’m not mistaken, currently there are maybe 4 shields that are used by the majority of players. As for grenades, these are mainly used for their anointment and merely to distract some foes with it as none have a damage that will make a difference in any battles. Maybe this is why there is the challenge to actually kill with grenades…
Shields : Most have from too little to non-sensical benefits while their low capacity is totally unjustified. These needs a total overhaul in my view, to offer us more options and variation. As a note, the nova perk is really bad as the IED unless it really makes a difference in the battle. Both barely tickles the foes. Maybe the frost nova with Amara glitch but not because is doing damage, because it freezes the foes giving you time to, you know, kill them.
Grenades : as a general aspect, all needs buff. HEX was nerfed to the ground while was the only one viable. Again a design flaw. Grenades, in any real combat, are making a difference. The mistake here is the number we can carry. 11 grenades are far too many and so with the un-nerfed hex, in M3 you could have Gigamind killed so easy by all classes using only grenades. If are only 5 or 6, then you could buff them seriously. In addition, some needs their behavior a bit redesign as on top of the fact that do no damage, are so easily dodge that literally don’t even touch the foes. It’s a reason why tracking ones are desired. Bouncing ones should bounce towards the foes to keep them in the blast radius. Single hit ones should have huge blast radius and base damage.
I have all trophies for B3, every map 100% achievement, 500 guardian, all 4 classes TVHM M4… So, I really play the game. There is one repeatable quest with the delivery (worst) and Malliwan Takedown one. And… That’s it. I think there are 2 months since I’ve seen a hunt quest on the message board. As is the hotfix deployed, I think quests can be deployed too. New ones too. Chain ones that in each day is a step leading to an epic battle for last step that is handsomely rewarded when completed. Something to do and break the brainless chain of farming, something that call us to login and play.
Personally I will remove the Airborne (B3 is neither Anthem nor Destiny) and Slide (so little utility for so little weapons to worth its existence) ones. These two dilutes artificially the chance to get the anointment you need. The game mechanic is not build to support these anointments.
I fear there is a lack of imagination when comes to anointments or some limitations that prevents coming up to better options. I will not say more about this as I cover it in another post together with Eridium reroll or Eridium Anointment idea. I just say that Anointments desperately needs an assignment matrix that prevents to be rolled when makes no sense (like amo regen on Infinity Pistol, Sliding on Snipers, consecutive hits on single shot weapons, etc.)
I will follow to see if there is any evolution. Events like chest rewards (which by the way were nerfed so much in the week 2 or 3 that even the golden chest shows a legendary once in a blue moon) for me not worth my time. There are many places with easy to reach red chests in the game. Another 95% save/load activity. But after 50 red chests I got the same 10 worthless items over and over again. So, why bother? I have more changes by actually farming a boss, which makes the event null.
I will still login time to time driven by nostalgia unless something changes for the better, and have something to do that do not brings boredom in 30 min pf playing.
So, have fun Vault Hunters and see you when I see you!