During Guardian Con, Gearbox had a panel for Borderlands 3 which went over some of the accessibility features and they announced new online and social features for the game. The panel also shared the plans that Gearbox has for the next version of the ECHOcast Twitch extension.
One of the biggest accessibility features that was announced during the gameplay reveal event was level syncing. Gearbox wanted to “ensure that Borderlands 3 can be enjoyed by as many players as possible, regardless of how much time they have to play or any challenge they might face in life. Level synching allows just that by configuring everything from the loot to the enemies so they are at your level. This means that high-level players and low-level players can play together without having to worry about it being too easy or too difficult, everything would be tailored to your specific level. Other accessibility features include “fully re-mappable controls, Xbox Adaptive Controller compatibility, extensive support for subtitles and closed captioning that includes text size and opacity options, aim assist, toggle for headbob, auto-mantling, running, and crouching.
One of the new social features that was discussed was the new pinging system which is “particularly useful if you play cooperatively without a mic-lets you quickly and effectively communicate the positions of enemies, loot chests, guns, and other points of interest by highlighting them both in-world and on the minimap. It sounds very similar to Apex Legends ping system, which Fortnite also took notes from. This is the first time a game that isn’t a battle royale has had a ping system. Other social features include items that were sold by friends can be obtained in vending machines and the mail system that can be used to send items to each other. You can also partake in missions that your friends went up against rare enemies which will guarantee to spawn to you if you take on a mission from the bounty board on Sanctuary III. Discord integration and new matchmaking options are going to be available for Borderlands 3. “Asynchronous matchmaking lets you keep playing while the system searches for players to pair you with, and you can use activity group-based matchmaking to search for players who are playing the same mode that you want to or who have made similar progress through the main story, for example.” Gearbox also introduced a new Free-for-all Dueling feature that allows for opt-in 1v1v1v1 multiplayer.
New ECHOcast version 2 features include mobile support, subscriber bonuses, Moxxi’s Mixer Events, and Badass Viewer Events. If you are a subscriber, it will increase your chances of winning loot during streams. Moxxi Mixer Events allow viewers to buy streamers in-game cocktails using Twitch bits. These cocktails will either offer a buff or debuff. The ingredients are voted on by the viewers. Badass Viewer Events let you spawn a badass enemy into a streamer’s game. It will be named after you or another viewer and you will get to vote on how the enemy behaves. “Should it heal? Taunt? Level up? Depends how badass you want your badass to be!” Borderlands 3 releases September 13, 2019, for the PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.