Xbox One Review: Battleborn

Gearbox throw down the gauntlet in the MOBA FPS battle…

Battleborn comes from the brains of the Borderlands series, so you can expect many similarities between that series and you can definitely see it in its visuals and presentation, but Battleborn is a very different game…
Gearbox have made the first attack on the MOBA FPS genre, while Overwatch’s beta launched on the same day as Battleborn launched. Now, both games are out and while I have yet to render my verdict on Overwatch (which should be sometime next week hopefully) it wouldn’t be fair of me to try and pit these two against each other until then…so I will proceed on to just what Battleborn is all about.

The good news is that even though Battleborn is online-only, it does have a co-op story mode with you and 4 other players. The roster of characters you can choose from is a real mixed bag of different looks, but also different skills and different weapons. The story is a bit on the light side, but it does have the trademark Gearbox sense of humour that they perfected in the Borderlands series. What is a misfire though is the dialogue in missions that act as one-liners that you will hear over and over, which will get annoying after just a few levels.

There’s plenty of characters to level up, as well as the promise of more through future DLC. I do love the characters in their visual style and they definitely have good personalities, plus I love the whole anime intro for each mission. It looks like a modern version of an old Saturday Morning cartoon, which is definitely something we older gamers all miss.
Multiplayer is, of course where you’ll find the most fun. I did have a few issues finding competitive matches compared to the co-op missions, but I’m sure it will improve over time. The matches I did get into were crazy, but fun. It definitely feels like a combo of a MOBA and Team Fortress 2, which I suppose was the real first MOBA FPS. It’s too soon to tell if Battleborn will be successful against it’s opponent, or if both will simply fail to entice gamers to pick it up, but I personally hope they give both an equal chance.

My only criticism I have of Battleborn other than the repetitive one-liners is the lack of content at launch. I know we’ll be getting some more through free and paid DLC, but it does seem light on the whole…which is a little disappointing. Having said that, there’s still plenty to do and now it’s even reduced in price.

The Verdict

Battleborn won’t be to everyone’s tastes, but for those MOBA fans, Borderlands fans or simply FPS fans…it’s hard to deny Battleborn is an intriguing game, one that I definitely recommend picking up. Sure, it’ll have stiff competition from Blizzard’s Overwatch, but maybe there’s enough room for both. Time will surely tell on this one, but I hope they balance off each other nicely.

Score: 8.0