Developer(s) Gearbox Software
Publisher(s) 2K Games
Released 20 October 2009
Genre(s) FPRPG
Mode(s) Single-player, 4 player local and 4 player online cooperative and multiplayer
Ratings MA17+
Platform(s) Microsoft Windows, Playstation 3, Xbox 360 and Mac OS X
See also: Borderlands 2

Borderlands is a science fiction first-person shooter game with RPG elements created by Gearbox Software for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and Mac OS X. The game was revealed in the September 2007 issue of Game Informer magazine and is the first of a planned series. It was released on October 20, 2009.


Borderlands features four-player 'drop-in, drop-out' cooperative online play in addition to a single-player mode, and two-player split screen co-op modes for consoles. Much of the gameplay consists of traditional first person shooter elements, combining a selection of weapons to use and a selection of enemies to battle. Players also have access to color customizable vehicles for vehicular combat. Deceased enemies drop random equipment, which is available to pick up.


Main article: Missions

Like traditional RPGs, much of the players' time will be taken up by missions. There are 127 missions of varying length and complexity, 47 of these being part of the story and the other 80 as side missions. Many of these missions can be completed together. Gearbox wants to encourage players to push themselves just a bit further to complete the next mission on their list. Each mission carries its own rewards, such as new weapons and items, or perhaps revealing a new piece of the story.


The game also features a gun generator similar to Diablo's random item generation system. This new system generates over 17,000,000 weapons. The system randomized the guns by changing nearly everything about them, including barrel length, round type, round size, ironsights/scope, color, building material, and even elemental damage forms added onto the attack.

"We saw a ridiculous amount of guns, but perhaps the strangest was a revolver that fired shotgun shells (similar to .38/.357 shotshells). Gearbox is constantly surprised with what the system comes up with. They've seen rifles shoot everything from homing darts to rockets. 'One of the guns tracks onto something and locks, and after three seconds, [the target] suddenly explodes,' director Matthew Armstrong says." However, such features have not been seen in the game yet.

Player vs. player

Main article: Arena

At any time or place, a player can melee another player to issue a challenge. When the melee is returned, a 1 vs. 1 duel starts. Players can also travel to "arenas" located at  various locations in the game world. These arenas are specifically made for competitive play, where players can face off in both free-for-all games or team-based games.
(winning duels does not win items but is solely for the purpose of fun)

Multiple Playthroughs

After completing the game, players are free to roam the world and wrap up any side missions left unfinished, drop the Vault key off at Tannis and collect their reward and wander around aimlessly. After returning to the title screen and choosing characters however, players can choose to begin Playthrough 2.

On the second playthrough, characters have all of the gear, skills, levels, and money that they ended the game with. All of the enemies scale up, with bandits beginning at level 34, and ascending from there. The names of enemies also adjust to reflect the difficulty setting, i.e. from psycho-maniac-lunatic, midget-little-stunted and Bruiser-Brute-Bully.

At the end of Playthrough 2, all of the enemies scale again, ranging from 48-52 and dropping even better loot than before. Players can revisit and battle most of the bosses, and fight for better gear, participate in cooperative play, and fight in the arenas. Colloquially referred to as Playthrough 2.5, marking the completion of Playthrough 2's storyline missions, all enemies and missions scale to either two levels below or above the character and adapts as characters level up (this carries over to the DLCs, and will significantly increase their difficulty when Playthrough 2 of Borderlands is complete).

Pop culture references

Main article: Borderlands pop culture references

Character Classes

Main article: Classes

The four classes in Borderlands

Borderlands includes four character classes, each with unique skills, abilities and back stories. As characters level up, they gain increases to basic stats, such as health totals and accuracy. Each class also has three unique focus skill trees to develop. There are also accessory items specific to each class. The four classes are:


In the distant future, in the year 2864, several colonization ships head to Pandora, a planet on the edge of the galaxy. The colonists are drawn there in search of a better life as well as vast mineral resources said to be on the planet, free for the taking, akin to a futuristic gold rush. Some time after settling, the colonists discover that there is little the planet offers aside from some decrepit alien ruins. When the companies mining the planet leave, they let loose the criminals they had employed as forced labor and left any other colonists there. Some of the settlers seek to get rich quick by discovering alien technology. Most others are just trying to survive. After seven Earth years, the planet's slow orbit brings a transition from winter to spring, and many horrifying creatures emerge from hibernation.

A beacon of hope for the remaining colonists emerges in the form of a mysterious alien Vault carved in the side of a mountain. This Vault is said to contain vast stores of alien technology and secrets. The only problem is that the people who discovered the Vault were completely wiped out by some sort of protective force. The only evidence of their discovery is a scattered radio transmission, proclaiming the Vault's majesty, but not its location.


Site Score Date Reviewer Notes

&+00 8.5 (Xbox)

8.5 (PC)

8.0 (PS3)

2009-10-21 Chris Watters
1Up &+80B+ 2009-10-19 Thierry Nguyen
IGN &+888.8 2009-10-19 Charles Onyett Editor's Choice Award
Playstation University &+00 2009-10-18 The Dean
Just Push Start &+804/5 2009-10-18 Jon Christopher
Team Xbox 9/10 2009-10-19 Editor's Choice Award
Planet Xbox 360 8.6/10 2009-10-19
Giant Bomb 4/5 2009-10-18 Jeff Gerstmann


8.4/10 2009/10/19
G4 4/5 2009/10/19 Brian leahy

PC requirements

  • 2.4 GHz Pentium 4 Processor or equivalent
  • AMD K7 processors require a patch available here: gbxforums
  • NVIDIA Geforce 8600 GS/ATI Radeon X850 Series
    • Requires Pixel shader version 3.0 or better (ONLY required to activate certain high-level graphics features)
  • DVD-ROM drive (Not required if game is purchased from an online store.)
  • 8 GB of hard disk space
    • 4 GB of hard disk space needed for the complete DLC Pack.


  • The intro song of Borderlands is "Ain't no rest for the Wicked" by Cage the Elephant.
  • The end title song is "No Heaven" by DJ Champion.
  • Awarded Guinness Book of World Records (Gaming) world record for most guns in a video game: 17,750,000

External links

Smallwikipedialogo.png This page uses content from Wikipedia. The original article was at Borderlands (video game).
The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with Borderlands Wiki, the text of Wikipedia is available under the GNU Free Documentation License.