Gearbox reveals a first look at a game which I really hope is Borderlands 3

3 min read

Gearbox GDC

The 2017 Game Developers Conference kicked off this week, uniting industry professionals with a light smattering of media as new technology across hardware and software platforms were shown off. As usual, Epic’s Unreal engine took plenty of the spotlight as that particular piece of game development software happens to be used by just about every studio around.

It’s about as ubiquitous as a Windows operating system, an engine that offers a surprising amount of malleability when tinkered with properly to avoid the late 2000s habit of every game featuring impossibly-steroided super-soldiers in action in earlier incarnations of the Unreal engine. One such studio which managed to make Unreal technology shine on their side? Gearbox, whose Borderlands games featured a rich palette of cell-shading and bright colours in its various guises.

Gearbox now have their hands on the latest Unreal tech, and they showed off their progress with it at the Epic GDC presentation in San Francisco. And the rendering tech that they hinted that “may use in a future Gearbox game”, looks an awful lot like a Borderlands sequel. “It allows the scene to simulate in real-time,” Gearbox big cheese and part-time magician (I’m not making this up) Randy Pitchford explained via VG247.

Gearbox GDC (1)

Gearbox GDC (2)

Gearbox GDC (3)

As time of day changes, or, as, maybe conceivably we have different physics if we, for example, were to explore different planets. There might be different physics and the sun and the moons might be in different positions than what we’re used to on Pandora.

Borderlands on planets other than Pandora. Well it’s about time! If you played to the end of Borderlands 2, you’ll be well aware of the revelation in the climax of that game: That mysterious alien vaults were hidden not on Pandora but also on various other planets throughout the galaxy. Pandora has pretty much been mined dry by this point, so a third Borderlands game facing newer exotic threats would be welcome.

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If that screenshot above is an indicator that is. Gearbox is working on a new Borderlands once they wrap up the DLC on Battleborn, so expect some news regarding that sequel to finally manifest in the near future.

Last Updated: March 2, 2017

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  • Alien Emperor Trevor

    Given the ending I would’ve been surprised if we weren’t going to other planets in Borderlands 3.

    And well done on the revolutionary idea of having different sky boxes & physics on different planets, Randy.

    • Matthew Holliday

      “Different physics”
      aka plugging in stuff from the pre-sequel where they feel like it.

      But so long as Randy can get past this habit of nerfing all the guns that make the game fun, I’ll be stoked.
      Also something to replace slag.

      • Original Heretic

        Nothing wrong with the slag from BL2. It was a great mechanic to include.
        And playing Siren, it was kickass when her ability also slagged enemies.

        • Matthew Holliday

          Slag is great, just needs better implementation.
          Siren was fine, her ult does it automatically, and cooldown reduction stuff was easy to get on her, so theres never a shortage of slag with her, but other characters would have to sacrifice stuff to get it going.
          and simply switching weapons is just a paaaaaaiiiiiin.

          • Original Heretic

            Mechromancer also had a slag ability in one tree for her robot.
            At the end of the day, it IS a game that is meant for team play. And NOT including a Siren in a team is silly.
            Her healing was essential for the huge boss fights.

          • Matthew Holliday

            Most of the people I co-opd with got bored after a playthrough or two, and never had the patience to really grind for the correct loot, so by the time team play mechanics starting becoming relevant, I was the only one left playing, lol.
            And when they came back, I was 50/61/72 and they were still in the 30s

            Game was too long for effective co-op.

          • Original Heretic

            Ah that rather sucks!

            Well my mates and I jammed this together for over a year (it became our “go to” multi game), and we kept at pretty much the same levels all the way through.
            We jammed every Sunday. It was awesome.

            Every now and then, when we feel nostalgic, we still pop it in.
            We played through the campaign, all the way through, more than 10 times together, with various characters.
            If your love is strong, it ain’t too long!

          • Matthew Holliday

            haha, I never had the patience to play only every Sunday, well done for sticking with it 😛

          • Original Heretic

            Don’t get me wrong! We jammed solo during the week, but Sundays were our multi days.
            That’s when all the weapon swops and big monster hunts happened as well!

          • HairyEwok

            Only healing i ever got was from playing technomancer (our siren was stingy and never used her ult), where when you have a full clip you regen health… oh and then there were the life leech grenades.

          • Original Heretic

            Kak one! I was always the Siren in the group and when I jammed with my team, I made sure I was specced for healing.

          • Alien Emperor Trevor

            I’d disagree that it’s meant for team play, it was perfectly balanced for SP. I had multiple playthroughs with a bunch of chars all solo. Out of 360 odd hours in B2 I spent maybe 5 playing with other people.

            Only time you needed a team was with raids & the 3rd difficulty mode, which was when slag become mandatory as well – and I just skipped that.

          • Original Heretic

            It was more fun with other players, especially if they were your friends and not some random online strangers.
            The classes complemented one another beautifully.

          • Matthew Holliday

            Even most raids where doable solo, terramorphous and pyro pete were both pretty straightforward.
            I never did get hyperius without the siren exploit though.

  • Magoo

    Must.. not.. jump.. on.. the…


  • Original Heretic



    And now that I’m somewhat calmer, that does, indeed, look like a place for a hero. (BL2 intro song reference, for the uneducated)

    • Magoo

      Well it sure ain’t no heaven. 😛

    • HairyEwok

      definitively a place to call “home”.

      • Original Heretic

        I’ve also got “How’d you like me now” playing in my head, but that song is now also a Storks reference (damn funny scene that!), so it’s been somewhat tainted!

  • HairyEwok

    Saw the vid before I went to work. I kept staring at that character and thought how she reminds me so much of that ReCore girl.

    • Matthew Holliday

      The production asset looks like a regular raider, having a design for generic bad guy number 4 isnt much.

      • HairyEwok

        I’ve not seen any female raiders ever in borderlands. I’ve only seen females in towns, quest givers and playable characters. (would be cool to see female psycho’s and raiders)

        That asset character looks like the Soldier class for the new borderlands they aren’t working on.

        • Matthew Holliday

          Being a soldier also crossed my mind, with the back thing and shoulder guard, but the colours and design are very raiderish, guess theres not enough content to make any kind of real guess.

          • HairyEwok

            True the colours on her do turn towards raider colours, but then again its borderlands were talking about and all of us who played the game know how many different colour schemes there are when you go into the customization station.

          • Alien Emperor Trevor

            The helmet looks a bit Crimson Lance-ish to me.

          • Matthew Holliday

            Maybe a bit too flying saucerish, but I definitely see the resemblance.
            Not sure how that works into the lore though, what with their pandora soldiers being abandoned and stuff.

  • All the Borderlands!

  • Craig “CrAiGiSh” Dodd

    Really hope it is Borderlands 3 but not a rushed production like the Pre-Sequel was.

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