Borderlands, a game that has yet to be copied

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Run.Shoot.Kill the angry shotgun midget.Raid his corpse for loot, rinse and repeat, with varying enemies, weapons and abilities. That’s Borderlands in a nutshell for you, as that set of repetitive motions makes up the core of the game. But heck, it’s a set sequence of actions that I just happen to love repeating over and over again. It’s a fantastic formula, and one that the gaming industry hasn’t copied, surprisingly.

Talking to Gamasutra, Gearbox boss and quite possibly the tallest man in the industry today, Randy Pitchford revealed how surprised he was that the Borderlands formula hadn’t been copied already.

“We’re in an industry where people do nothing but steal from each other. I’m actually astonished that we’re about to launch a sequel and no one’s stole it from us,” Pitchford said.

The formula’s right there. No one’s stolen it yet. That’s weird. Not that I want anyone to steal it, or I’m challenging people to steal it.

But it’s that very same formula that made the original Borderlands a hard sell in the first place, due to the fact that Gearbox went to great lengths to keep that style of gameplay a secret before launch, to avoid such competition.

“When talking about Borderlands 1, it was really confusing, because on one hand we gotta scream from the highest mountain to get attention because it’s a new IP. On the other hand, it’s like, ‘Shit, we don’t want to tell people our secret because then they’re all gonna copy it because it’s so good,’” Pitchford said.

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The end of September is drawing ever closer, and I’m pretty keen for the game, as it’s the one that I’ve been looking forward to the most this year. And Pitchford has a point, because unlike other games out there which are aped, cloned and reproduced like cockroaches on steroids, there really isn’t any other title that has flagrantly copied the shoot ‘n loot formula.

And with such a high benchmark set by Gearbox, it’s one hell of a task to do so in the first place.

Last Updated: July 24, 2012

Darryn Bonthuys

Something wrong gentlemen? You come here prepared to read the words of a madman, and instead found a lunatic obsessed with comics, Batman and Raul Julia’s M Bison performance in the 1994 Street Fighter movie? Fine! Keep your bio! In fact, now might be a good time to pray to it!

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