Borderlands: The Handsome Collection - Xbox One

Release Date:

March 24, 2015

Also on:

Xbox One PS4

Viewing USA:

Also on UK.
7.9

Summary:

Borderlands: The Handsome Collection should be a must purchase for any new Xbox One owner who hasn’t already spent a ton of time with the games packaged therein. The Handsome Collection combines Borderlands 2 as well as Borderlands: The Pre Sequel in a way specifically built for the power and flexibility that the Xbox One can provide. Optimizing an already insanely good set of games has turned this compilation entry into one of the premier titles available for the XB1 today. If you like a little bit of insanity in your action/RPG you may have come to the right place. If you are still on the fence then let us explain to you what makes these games so amazing.

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Details

  • Developer(s):
    • Gearbox Software
  • Publisher(s):
    • 2K Games
  • Release Date(s):
    • March 24, 2015
  • ESRB Rating:
    • Mature
  • Player(s):
    • 1-4
  • Player(s) (Co-op):
    • 2-4
  • Online Player(s):
    • 2-4 (Xbox Live)
  • Online Play:
    • Optional
  • Online (Co-op):
    • 2-4 (Xbox Live)
  • Series:
    • Borderlands

Technical Information

  • Required Disk Space:
    • 25GB Minimum
  • Supported Video Output:
    • 1080p
  • Engine:
    • Unreal Engine 3
  • Game Format:
    • Blu-ray Disc
  • Average Playing Time:
    • 80 Hours
  • Kinect Voice:
    • Optional
avatar name

Posted:
2015-07-19

Steven_Shaw

Writer

Xbox One

7.9

Borderlands: The Handsome Collection should be a must purchase for any new Xbox One owner who hasn’t already spent a ton of time with the games packaged therein. The Handsome Collection combines Borderlands 2 as well as Borderlands: The Pre Sequel in a way specifically built for the power and flexibility that the Xbox One can provide. Optimizing an already insanely good set of games has turned this compilation entry into one of the premier titles available for the XB1 today. If you like a little bit of insanity in your action/RPG you may have come to the right place. If you are still on the fence then let us explain to you what makes these games so amazing.

Borderlines was initially developed by 2K games and it popped onto consoles everywhere back in 2009. The game quickly conjured up a cult like hit in the FPS/action RPG market before gaining mainstream success as well. Two releases later, Borderlands 2 and the Pre-Sequel, the series was quickly working its way toward hallmark status in the genre. Adopted by Gearbox Software for consumption on the current gen of powerful consoles, we found this entry to be more than just a simple re-release with a few new trappings.

Before digging too much into the new things, let’s talk a minute about Borderlands 2 - the gem of this release. Borderlands 2 is probably the most important FPS/RPG that has ever been released. The hybrid aspect of the game set the stage for titles like Destiny (however lukewarmly received) to be released. Borderlands 2 has you exploring Pandora, not the James Cameron version, as you look for the riches hidden around it. The game is fluid, beautiful, and completely immersive.

While The Pre Sequel suffered from game saturation and heightened expectations it was still an entertaining game. Worked on heavily by developers 2K Australia, the title didn’t have the same spit and shine that Borderlands 2 had. So the first thing that Gearbox Software decided to do was to wrap up these games in the beauty that they deserve. Both titles have been remastered into that full and luscious 1080p image. Sixty frames per second set the stage for an influx of detail being streamlined right to your big screen televisions. This new attractive package could stand alone as reason enough to purchase the title, but we won’t stop there. You aren’t just getting a great set of games for the price of one, you are getting some new stuff.

The best thing that The Handsome Collection has to offer is that it is a complete package of the second and third titles. For whatever reason, time we suppose, the original Borderlands was not included in this compilation. Still, though, you are getting The Pre Sequel and Borderlands 2, along with all of the downloadable content, for the price of one single current generation game. Added to the disc are the popular additions of Claptastic Voyage and Ultimate Vault Hunter Pack 2. You are probably staring at over 100 hours of content here if you are a speedy gamer. If you like to take your time as you explore these crazy worlds you could probably flesh and pad out that number even more.

We’ve been pretty vocal about how rad these ports are so we feel obliged to talk a little bit about their downsides as well. Some technical issues do mar an otherwise stellar experience. We’ll start by addressing Borderlands 2, what we consider to be one of the best games ever made.

Borderlands 2 was, as we mentioned above, one of the most seamlessly integrated video games that we have played to this point in our lives. So with the improved graphical possibilities granted by the Xbox 1 and its hardware, we have to wonder why we suffered from dropped frame rates. Borderlands 2 plays mostly pretty well on the XB1 but for some reason we noticed a stuttering frame rate issue. If this is going to be a game breaker for you than that is pretty sad. Still, it is slightly upsetting to see that the otherwise flawless title has been rendered less than what we experienced, at least in this aspect, a couple of years ago.

We admit that we spent less time with the Pre Sequel due to the fact that we weren’t as enthused with it upon its original release. Still, there are some nice things added to make the game more enjoyable. The addition of oxygen requirements makes for a newer strategic element and there are some nice new combat features, but for the most part the game is relatively the same as it was before, albeit looking much prettier. The game still is tough as heck when you get toward the end, as you combat enemies that are leveled well beyond your own measly skills. We did notice some issues with screen taring when things got pretty hectic. Taring is when the screen starts to warp due to fast movements of which there are plenty in the series. It looks bad on the occasion that it pops up but it shouldn’t be something that makes you resent the experience.

The majority of issues that we encountered in The Handsome Collection were related to technical issues, potentially those found within the actual coding of the game. With the penchant of companies to release DLC patches to fix problems we bet that something like that could be landing for download here in the near future. If enough people mention the problem than we can’t see Gearbox Software staying mum on the topic.

Right now we love The Handsome Collection if only because it gave us Borderlands 2 in 1080p with 60FPS. The Pre Sequel is okay, but we would have opted to have the original Borderlands included instead. Co op is fun and the multiplayer mode should be well used if you have any buddies that also own an XB1 and their own copy of this wonderful game.

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By:

2K Games

Release Date:

March 24, 2015

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