Today during The Borderlands Show, Gearbox revealed the first actual details about the main fixture of its coming year of Borderlands 3 content, a new mode called Arms Race which is replacing traditional story DLCs and is focused on âa new way to play.â
The first hype-generating bit attached to the concept is that it finally marks the return of the last two long-lost Vault Hunters from Borderlands 2, Salvador and Axton, who are acting as commentators for Arms Race, which is meant to be a sort of reality show. I would not expect a ton of story content from the pair of them other than witty quips, but hey, at least theyâre back.
The actual mode is a blend of a whole bunch of different things. Mainly, itâs a battle royale, but instead of 100 Vault Hunters dropping in to fight to the death, itâs just 1-4 Vault Hunters dropping in, gearing up fighting AI enemies, avoiding a shrinking storm, and winning by taking down a boss.
The idea is that you start with nothing, none of your weapons or perks or even your action skill or Guardian Ranks, but over time you will be able to kill enemies and get increasingly better drops of loot, white to green to blue to purple to legendaries. Iâm not clear on if thereâs a âdropâ to get your action skill or other perks back or not. It did not sound like it which would be an odd choice for a game that is also…debuting four new skill trees at the same time.
The idea is that you can find both ânormalâ legendaries to use in combat as you play through a round, but also legendaries that are new pieces of loot specific (possibly exclusive? Not sure) to the mode that you will need to extract from various stations around the map, or after the final boss at the end, in a way that reminds me somewhat of The Divisionâs Dark Zone.
This is battle royale rules, so if you die, and canât get a second wind, youâre done, and you lose whatever youâre holding if you havenât extracted it. Thatâs why this is probably best played with friends, as not only can they manually revive you, they can bring you back at stations around the map like Apex Legends. Not sure how I feel about another team-focused activity in a game that still doesnât quite have matchmaking down, but weâll see how it goes.
Arms Race is part of Season Pass 2 which covers content for the coming year. As one last bonus, that pass also includes the most substantive cosmetics the game has offered yet, four skins that are more than just heads or recolorings, but fully new models for each character called the Multiverse Final Form cosmetic pack which imagines what the characters might look like in another life, had they done something else instead of become Vault Hunters. Theyâre really good! I wish theyâd do more of these.
Arms Race launches on November 10 alongside the next-gen version of the game, and of course all the new skill trees which have already been detailed. It feels like itâs destined to get buried for a while in that launch window, but more is planned for the entire year, so you can always come back to it. I will have my impressions of Arms Race and the new skill trees up before launch.
So yeah, interesting new mode, some sick new skins and some old friends returning. Not bad.
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Borderlands 3, Gearbox Software, Season pass, Roguelike
World news – US – â????Borderlands 3â???? Reveals Arms Race Mode Details, Brings Back Salvador And Axton