I had a chance to see a behind-closed-doors presentation of Borderlands 3 as well as get a little hands-on time with the game. In that time, I got the chance to play with a new vault hunter, see a new world, and learn some of the new things coming to the game. The tagline for the game is “Mayhem is Coming”, which after seeing more of the game and playing it, I believe that it is a very appropriate and accurate statement. It’s not just coming, it’s everywhere.
The new Vault Hunter that they revealed here at E3 is the new Gunner Moze. What makes Moze unique is her action skill Iron Bear. Iron Bear is a mech that can be outfitted with a variety of different weapons that can change how you play the game. The three skill trees for Moze is Demolition Woman, Shield of Retribution, and Bottomless Mags. Each skill tree will have different weapons associated with them. In the Demolition Woman tree, players can outfit Moze with a grenade launcher, Shield of Retribution has a rail gun and a unique melee option, and Bottomless Mags comes equipped with a Minigun. One of the cool things about Moze is that you can equip different weapons to the Mag, you’re not just limited to only having two miniguns or two grenade launchers, it’s still an option, but you’re able to utilize two different weapons. Alongside each weapon, each skill tree also has another unique aspect to them such as the Shield of Retribution class having a bear claw attack as a melee weapon. The class also allows for party members to hop on the back of the Iron Bear and fire a mounted weapon while Moze is firing her attached weapons.
The demo I got to play was the same footage that was shown at the reveal event with Mouthpiece as the boss at the end. One of the things that took me by surprise was the feel of moving and shooting. The new movement abilities such as mounting ledges and sliding fit right in with the gameplay and the gunplay really feels like a step up. It’s also really easy and intuitive to change firing modes by simply pressing down on the d-pad. Every gun I was able to use felt really good to shoot and using the Iron Bear was a lot of fun, especially when you use different weapons. Just like every Borderlands, the boss or miniboss, Mouthpiece was very unique. If you’ve seen the reveal, you know that you fight him while several speakers are all around the arena as they go off. He has a shield, so the strategy is simple, but the added element of making sure you don’t get hit by a speaker blast adds an extra element as well as other enemies trying to kill you. After defeating them, a lot of loot popped out and it is an extremely good feeling, which is what Gearbox wanted. They said that one of their goals was to reward you immediately after taking down a boss.
Some of the other things that were shown off in the presentation related to the social, settings, and customization that are in the game. The new world that they showed off is called Eden-6. Eden-6 was taken inspiration from the Louisana swaps and they wanted each new world to feel completely different from Pandora which was mostly a wasteland. Some of the new social aspects of the game involve your friends. If you or a friend sells something to a vendor, it will be available for either you or your friend to buy if they choose to. You can also send items to your friends, via the mailbox feature. New customization options include being able to change the colors of a skin. Borderlands 3 will release on September 13, 2019, for the PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.