New Tales From The Borderlands Review - Forgettable Story, Unforgettable Characters

One of my biggest gripes because of the mainline Borderlands show is its humor. I’ve had good quality laughs playing, but Borderlands’ jokes land similar to a shotgun blast in which some hit among others don’t. That’s fine in bursts, but shotgun blast after shotgun blast will get exhausting. Telltale Games’ undertake this world, Tales from Borderlands, remedied this by giving a far more nuanced and subdued undertake the humor coursing through franchise’s veins. It became among my personal favorite Borderlands games, having great tale and unforgettable figures. 

I’m pleased to report Gearbox’s undertake that formula in brand new Tales from Borderlands keeps that exact same love of life having greatly enhanced artistic design more based on the show’ second entries. Additionally includes a cast in the same way unforgettable – We currently want a lot more of them. Regrettably, however, the whole package is disappointed by way of a lackluster overarching narrative lacking cohesion, and I’m left wishing Gearbox provided these figures a much better tale to occur within. 

New Tales from Borderlands includes a couple of familiar faces and names with Tales from Borderlands’ Rhys, now CEO of gun-manufacturer Atlas, as well as other mega-corporations like Maliwan and Tediore. All of the game occurs on Promethea, which Borderlands 3 players should recognize.


Altruistic but internally selfish scientist Anu teams with the woman used street-smart bro Octavio, their assassination bot LOU13, and Fran’s Frogurt owner Fran. Together, they try to protect Promethea from the Tediore intrusion, secure a concealed vault treasure and, finally, try to produce and alter the planet by having an anti-gun unit. The tale sets this up quite well in the 1st bout of this five-part tale, and I also had been excited to see in which it went. But simply several hours later on, I happened to be kept confused. 

Without spoiling such a thing, the tale bounces between apparently random subplots that feel unimportant to your main conflict. At one point, I’m hopeless to dodge a Tediore intrusion. Then, one hour later on, I’m for a Shark Tank-like game show attempting to pitch Anu’s unit to investors. Then, my main concern is apparently to start a company amidst the rubble associated with Tediore intrusion that’s nevertheless ongoing. I needed a lot more of the save-the-world narrative the very first episode create, however the part beats and actions as you go along are distracting and loosely connected above all else.

The tale does put it self up well, having sweet minute of the bow over the top, by enough time the credits rolled, I happened to be pleased to have observed just what this squad of figures had. I simply want the whole game showcased the cohesion We felt in the 1st and last episodes. 


Story apart, brand new Tales from Borderlands features four of my brand new favorite figures within world. Anu is funny and quirky in a vintage scientist-getting-in-the-way-of-herself method, plus some late-game revelations add more level to the woman character that we appreciate. Octavio plays it cool, and I also had enjoyable shaping the sort of “cool” he could be with my alternatives. Fran is just a sexually-confident middle-aged girl who’s reserve subtlety in support of outright telling individuals, “we should bone tissue.” She seems the absolute most just like a classic Borderlands character – having few fart jokes, too (admittedly, one of these simple made me personally laugh a whole lot).

LOU13 had been my personal favorite, however. Their deadpan humor and their journey to split free of the parameters of their assassination development kept me personally smiling the whole method through. Each character shined in their own personal means whenever separated, but together, my personal favorite conversations in entire game occurred, permitting each riff regarding the other people in unique means. 

Of program, the prosperity of these moments arrived down seriously to Gearbox’s exemplary character writing while the alternatives the overall game introduced me personally with at both trivial and crucial moments in narrative. I really could set Fran with a large energy play of the remark whenever arrested by Tediore troops, or I really could simply have the woman respond to questions by simply making fart noises. We enjoyed crafting my undertake all these figures and Gearbox, just like Telltale, excelled for the reason that respect. 


Mostly gone would be the Telltale “this individual will keep in mind” notifications. The theory is that, this is usually a good touch, since it eliminates that gamified element from formula and permits the gamer to call home using their alternatives without understanding how they affect the tale. Used, however, We missed them. Without these tip-offs, conserve for a couple random people that happen without description, we felt like I’d lost a little agency. Yes, I happened to be selecting your choices i desired, but we struggled to patch together exactly how my actions impacted the grander narrative. The moment responses are there; it had been very easy to inform if Octavio, as an example, didn’t like just what Anu stated. But exactly how my actions correctly changed the wider narrative stayed a secret. I’d guesses throughout, but We wonder if choice X resulted in Consequence Y.

We additionally had beenn’t impressed in what I happened to be doing once I had beenn’t picking discussion alternatives. Gameplay comes down seriously to swiping kept, appropriate, up, or down, or pushing a key, mashing it over and over, or keeping it down. Sometimes, you’ll circumambulate a tiny area to get cash or consult with locals, however these didn’t do a great deal for me personally. This kind of adventure game play had been the conventional years back at height of Telltale’s development, however it seems old now, and I also desired more variety. 

Occasional minigames, like a parody of the turn-based JRPG, or any other in which I’d to hack right into a computer by detatching NSFW spam for a display, aided for the reason that respect, but we nevertheless desired more.


Vaultlanders, a minigame that seems numerous times in each episode, is just a enjoyable minifigure-based combat game but limited to the very first couple of times. You can find Vaultlander numbers to gather in each episode, and every features its own stats and abilities, however it matters small. We never ever struggled to beat an enemy rather than focused on my abilities or stats. That’s because playing involves mindlessly spamming the assault key and sporadically dodging by swiping a way once the enemy assaults. As with any others minigames, this 1 could be missed totally, but I happened to be desperate to look for a function for the addition in game and played through each one of these. Regrettably, i did son’t look for a function, that quickly became pace-breaking annoyances I’d to manage once I simply wished to return to the tale. 

Still, once my 10-hour journey in brand new Tales from Borderlands finished, I happened to be pleased to have observed it. There’s good inside, however it’s often muddled by dated mechanics that feel more obligatory because Telltale did them in the last game in place of one thing essential to its satisfaction. The cast is very good, so when a character-driven experience, this game excels. I simply wished Gearbox propped them with an account since strong as their specific arcs.

Ultimately, Brand new Tales from Borderlands is like a lot more of equivalent and fans associated with very first are going to love this particular, but trained with’s been almost eight years since that very first one, i desired a lot more of an development.

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