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Veteran Member - Level 11
It's very easy for me to say that I'm an avid fan of the FPS genre, as I devour games like Halo and Battlefield 3 on a daily basis. My second genre of choice would undoubtedly be the RPG, seeing as how my childhood was spent with games like Final Fantasy VI and Pokemon Yellow (most prominently the latter as I've stated many times before). A combination of the two genre's has always been somewhat of a dream of mine, and I've never really seen the formula truly TRIED before. I mean, Fallout 3 was a "shooter" but the actual shooting mechanics left much to be desired. Enter Gearbox with Borderlands.
Now before I delve too deeply into fanboy gush mode before its destined time, I'd like to explain the point of this blog. It's time to give credit where credit is most dearly due, to a studio that is embracing the "fun" that is most related with video games. They're giving us games that I, myself dreamed about in my childhood. They're attacking their fans with never-before-seen gameplay elements, with wide toothy grins on their faces, and giving them experiences that are sure to be talked about years down the road. Here's a few examples of what they have brewing for us.
Note: This is totally a shameless advertisement for Gearbox and their upcoming titles.
Let's get the obvious one out of the way. As I was getting ready to say in my intro, Borderlands is the culmination of awesome, and tearful nerd dreams. You have a wide open world, nearly endless missions, an even more endless amount of guns, and an embracing of co-op both on and offline. Throw that all together, and dress it up with beautiful graphics, and tight gameplay and you have a game like we've never seen before and will probably never see again...
Until September 18th anyways, when Borderlands 2 makes its way triumphantly back into our living rooms, and plagues us with sleepless nights. With four new characters, a story that actually...exists (if you played the first game, you probably remember being confused at the mention of a "narrative"), and even MORE guns.
Gearbox just basically looked at every complaint that fans and critics threw at their first title, and said, "You're right...but we can give you even more." as they're addressing even the small complaints like "repetitive environments" and totally blew up their upcoming game with various settings, and locales. There's even a robust and active city lying in the former wastes of Pandora, which is bustling with NPC's and people to talk to. I believe "fan service" is the correct term for what they've done.
Aliens: Colonial Marines
What might come as surprising to some, and predictable to others, is that I'm a life-long fan of the Alien series. Well a fan of the Alien films BEFORE Alien 3, and it's successors. Alien and Aliens are two masterpieces in my eyes, even though they are both products of somewhat different movie genre's. Alien being a horror film, and Aliens leaning more towards the Action side of things.
A few years back I suffered through the mess that was Alien VS Predator. I've never really been a fan of the Predator movies, and the fact that they threw the inferior monster onto the same screen as the extraterrestrial king seriously irks me. But Gearbox looked past this poisonous combination and decided to make an Alien game that ignores the sequels that came after Aliens, and continues the story set up by the first two movies.
What makes things even better is the fact that they're continuing their co-op trend, and providing a campaign that can sport up to four players online, and split-screen locally. Shooting Aliens in the face with my Niece hasn't sounded this enticing since Halo, as once again Gearbox is bringing to life the fantasies of many Alien fanboys.
Brothers In Arms: Furious 4
Finally, we have a game that has recently been withdrawn back into the depths of Gearbox as it's receiving a mysterious makeover. From what we've seen of the game, it looks nothing like any of the Brothers In Arms titles before it, which were stoic and based heavily upon story. Furious 4 looks to be more in the vein of Inglourious Basterds, as it has a somewhat gorey, and cartoonish art style.
I'm just taking a wild guess, but I'm thinking that the 4 different characters (who are all of different shapes and sizes) consist of different classes, and that the game will offer up to four player online co-op much like Gearbox's most recent titles, along with some added split-screen love. Like I said, just a wild guess.
While little to nothing is known for sure about the title (for all we know, the game might not even be called Furious 4 anymore) I'm hoping that the base idea remains intact. I saw many people scoffing online upon the announcement of the title, but I think a more lighthearted take on the big war would be a fantastic twist for a deteriorating genre.
With two highly anticipated titles standing by in the near future, and a title going through re-conception, it's easy to say that a lot is going on over at Gearbox Software. Borderlands is sure to see more installments in the future (judging from the quality of work that we've seen from mere trailers pertaining to Borderlands 2) and Gearbox has stated that the serious nature that we've come to know and love from the original Brothers In Arms has not been forgotten.
With these two facts, and hope for the success of Aliens: Colonial Marines held in mind, it's clear that Gearbox has a brighter future than their already bright present on the horizon. Also, who knows what other franchises the developer will introduce in the years to come? Anyways, here's to you Gearbox Software. I look forward to throwing my money at you and your insanely awesome titles in the months, and years to come.