Borderlands/Headscratchers

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  • Is it just me, or was anyone else pissed off by the ending? You spend the whole game working up to this reward at the Vault, endure countless Goddamned Bats and That One Boss numerous times and what does it lead up to? Fight after fight with Crimson Lance units, and then you face off against an entire race of Giant Space Fleas From Nowhere, and at the end? You fight a giant Tentacle Rape monster that's incredibly easy to beat, and that's it. No reward, no payoff, just a whole game that led up to jack squat. I have never been more pissed off at an ending. Disappointing Last Level at it's finest right here.
    • Not me. I knew that the Guardians had to be placed there by the Eridians already to protect the Vault, from an earlier quest. The Crimson Lance were more interesting to fight than more bandits, and the Guardians were actually new. The only thing that changed was what the Guardians were protecting, and exactly how I'm getting paid.
      • Really? Because that earlier quest still gave no indication as to what they were from what I saw. And the Bandits had a lot more personality to me then the Killzone Rip-Off Crimson Lance. The Guardian thing was just a big let-down to me, but it would not have been that bad if not for the Giant Tentacle Rape Monster at the end. Seriously, it literally comes out of nowhere and what do I get? Nothing. A whole game for a Tentacle Rape Monster, and giving the Key to Tannis.
      • Can we chalk this up to having an excuse plot? Seriously, besides the first 10 minutes of the game and the last 30 minutes, I have no idea what the hell was going on. There's inklings of the plot throughout but there's a good 50% of the game where your guardian angel stops talking to you and that's pretty much where the story stops.
        • Now, I'd love to accept that, seeing as I like the game a lot, but as this says, It Just Bugs Me. I just can't get over it, like they could've put in a quick 15 second explanation, but no, they couldn't even do that. You have a great point, but yeah...
      • I was less surprized at the twist - as soon as I saw the Guardian Angel appear in the first movie, I knew there'd be some big twist beyond something mundane like the Vault being a library or the GA was some sort of AI or whatever - and more surprized at what the twist was. There wasn't a lot of suggestions during the game (granted, I skipped around) that alternate dimensions and Cthulu-type monsters would pop up. And the boss fight was pretty anti-climatic considering how varied the previous boss fights were. Still, like Diablo before it and other games of the sort, the story really isn't the reason you play. The setting might be interesting, but it's just an excuse to collect items so you can do neat stuff and collect more items.
        • Most experienced players are Genre Savvy enough to expect a 'twist'. The major disappointment is the reward. If the game keeps going, the final boss should drop some unique loot to make the second playthrough more interesting.
        • I just don't like that concept, I mean if your only reason for playing is just to collect more shit for no reason, then I see no point in playing. Then again, it is incredibly fun, so I guess I'll have to suppress my Nerd Rage on that while playing... Or not. I've never played a Diablo-type game before, so I geuss it's just me being pissed off... Albeit for a very good reason.
              • Don't like, don't play.
          • Well, to clarify, the point of these games are kinda like fancy beat 'em up games and rogue-likes. You play for the challenge, group play, interesting set pieces and sequences and what have you rather than the story, super complex strategy, and what have you. They're casual light arcade fun rather than heavy simulation fun. It's the difference between watching Grindhouse and watching The Shawshank Redemption - you watch them for very different reasons.
      • It makes sense once you remember the planet is called Pandora. That kinda gives away that there really wasn't anything good in the vault.
        • Pandora's Box contained hope.
          • I suggest you read the whole legend, rather than the twist at the end. In fact some versons have "hope" as the worst of the evils contained, since it encourages mankind to suffer through the rest.
      • To be fair, Gearbox is well aware of how out of left field the Guardians and Destroyer are, if the challenge achievements related to them are anything to go by.
      • WRONG. Try playing the final encounter with subtitles on. What's-her-name is killed mid-sentence but the subtitles go on, proving that Gearbox had a proper fight and further levels planned but scrapped it and threw in The Destroyer as a replacement, all for the deadline they idiotically declared two years before.
      • You know, I always thought that was a bit of a clever ploy on Gearbox's part to not spoil the fact that What's-her-name was going to get killed if you had subtitles on. You're expecting to hear the rest of the sentence, but nope, tentacle-stab, death gurgle, surprise.
  • Why was this released a week earlier on the consoles than on PC? My (360 using) friend has been playing it since Friday while I'm stuck staring mornfully at my Steam preload...
    • Because God hates PC players, of course.
    • Most publishers admitted a while ago that they stagger PC releases so that the inevitable piracy on release day won't cut into the console sales.
      • And now I can finally play it.
  • All I want to know is, what on Earth or beyond it possessed Gearbox to use Gamespy, of all people, for their multiplayer? How can a game this well-suited to shooting things with friends have ended up relying on the networking equivalent of the Edsel?
    • Now, I don't know much about Gamespy's record, but, from my experience, the game is very smooth with 4 people with average connections so I don't see what you're talking about.
      • It's probably a result of being a console-first game and Gearbox not being traditionally a developer on network focused games. The Xbox version has all of its match making handled for it by nature of being on the Xbox. Gamespy was probably just the cheapest, easiest way to replace the middleware without asking people to learn how to program netcode. As for the issues in question, YMMV. There are instances where ports need to be forward which is usually beyond the average computer user (especially those used to fire-and-forget multiplayer of Steam games or similar), occasions where people simply can not connect at all without a workaround, save games not saving, and what not.
  • Yeah, so the Guardian Angel can talk to you because of the ECHO system, right? This was shown when the Angel couldn't communcate when the system was shut down and explained in the ending. Then how, exactly, does the Angel talk to you while you're in the bus, before you get the ECHO setup from Claptrap?
    • Who said it was using the ECHO visor to interface with you? It could have been using the ECHO system to communicate with a piece of equipment your character already had (just because the 4 of them lacked an objective seeking, ammo/sheild/health tracking visor doesn't mean they didn't have a mobile or something).
    • Actually, the way I interpret it is that she cannot see or know what is going on when the ECHO system goes down. I just happened to be playing that section again not but ten minutes ago, and while I wasn't giving my full attention to people talking, that's what it seems like. Helena calls you up to whine about Steele cutting off the ECHO and is cut out mid sentence. The next communication is from the Guardian angel, asking if you can see/hear her, and that she can't see you and has no idea what is going on. How she can talk to you without ECHO, I have no idea, but judging from what I saw/heard, that's my guess.
    • Notably, after the end of the game, when she's talking to you and saying she's watching, it zooms out to a satellite in space. I took this to mean that she uses that to watch everything. But it doesn't necessarily imply how she talks to you.
      • The satellite is called AN631, which is leetspeak for "Angel", and a Hyperion logo. My guess is that Hyperion knew of the vault and kept the satellite around in the event of a rival corporation (like the Atlas backed Crimson Lance) attempted to take it's contents. Why this is done by siccing adventurers on them instead of orbital bombardment is beyond me.
        • I thought that looked like a communications satelite. IF they bombarded the vault with the satalite itself, it would be destroyed and they'd be unable to watch the vault. If it was a comms sattelite then it wouldn't have weapons. So what else to do other than let people know where the trouble is. People who would do something about it.
        • I always thought the implication was that the guardian angel was the satellite, that "she" was an artificial intelligence left behind to guide the generations of inevitable vault hunters.
        • My impression is that GA was also watching you for research purposes (if that last...thing that happened is to be taken seriously). Which explains why she panics when the systems go down and she can't see you, even though she could contact you by other means, like by the scientist girl - she can't acquire combat data if she doesn't see you fighting. Sending you to fight the Destroyer was the final objective both because it would keep him from escaping and would provide her / Hyperion with delicious, delicious data (and, since she belongs to Hyperion, killing a bunch of Atlas soldiers on the way is a nice bonus). Seems to fit perfectly with the game's theme of having the seemingly nice corporations being selfish, greedy bastards all along. As for how she contacted you at the bus, you weren't very far from the Claptrap - seems to me she would have no reason to only contact you moments before you reach Fyrestone unless she was waiting until you got near the ECHO the Claptrap was carrying.
  • For the new DLC: How the hell does Moxxi get Flynt, Sledge and the Guardians in her arenas?
    • Just that? How about all those creatures, including Guardians? Or just how she makes certain guns more powerful, disables headshots hurting more than standard shots, and frikkin' GRAVITY for that matter? Of course, the answer is that the Bellisario's Maxim is in full effect - as it is for the whole game.
      • I assumed it was her breasts that were doing it.
  • Must the Destroyer be destroyed every 200 years? Or is he gone for good now? I suppose what I'm asking is will the next group of adventurers have to put him down again, or will they actually be able to enter the vault this time and see what's up?
  • Why don't the people of Pandora leave? It is a total shithole and the only thing of interest is the vault, so what the hell?
    • Some of them do, they just don't have the money to get off the planet (for example, the guy who got killed for selling fake cigars).
    • The game itself states that anyone with influence or money enough to leave the planet did so before you got there, and everyone left are either criminals, opportunists, or otherwise compromised.
  • Fridge Logic: If you find yourself being unable to abide by the MST3K Mantra, you will have trouble enjoying this game.
    • For example, how does a shotgun loaded with shotgun shells fire rockets?
    • More importantly, who stores grenades in a toilet?
      • Everyone on Pandora is so Badass, they eat metal and shit bullets.
        • I think you mean "they eat metal and shit grenades." That's why there are grenades in the toilet. And also where Bandit Psychos get the grenade they charge with.
    • The only illogical thing that actually bothered me was why the hell Skagzilla have laser-breath? But then it dawned on me: Godzilla! After that it was perfectly logical that a big-ass alien dog called something-zilla could breath lasers.
    • Why do the Crimson Lance, mercs working for the Atlas corporation, almost never have Atlas weapons, especially considering how powerful they are?
      • Because they're mercenaries and not employees. They have to find/buy/steal/loot/liberate Atlas weapons just like everyone else. Employees of Jacobs corporation, however, are expected to use Jacobs weaponry.
    • Pandora is a completely alien world with life-forms emerging from an entirely different evolutionary tree from humans, and yet Skag Meat is Nutritious and Delicious!
      • Well... skags eat anything and some creatures do change somewhat based on what they eat. Pink flamingos, for instance, get their pink color from their diet. Though that brings up the question of if a skag eats a pink flamingo, would you get a pink skag?
    • Why does the punch-tacular Brick use a pipe for regular melee instead of his fists?
      • He uses it as a nerf, obviously.
  • This one is driving me nuts. The infinitely respawning bandits is hand waved as everyone being hooked up to Renu-U when they arrive. They put that in so the player character technically never dies. I get that, but it doesn't prevent it from bugging the crap out of me. Think about it... if everyone I kill is just going to be revived two minutes later at the nearest indestructible flag pole, then all those 'big time' bandits will be back in action by morning. Every. Single. One. Everything I did short of the final battle accomplishes nothing! NOTHING!!! In fact, I KNOW this happens, because you can backtrack and kill them HUNDREDS OF TIMES in one play through!
    • Which is how they are waiting in Moxxi's Underdome, for a re-match against you with odds in their favour.
    • Marcus is (heavily) implied to be making up most if not all of the events of the "Dr. Ned's Zombie Island" DLC. However, items there can be used and otherwise affect your character in all other parts of the game. So...does this mean the entire game is made up (or at least seen through the eyes of an Unreliable Narrator)? It all fits in ways similar to the "the events of Pokémon are Ash's coma dream" theory; Marcus and Zed are everywhere, the main story line ends disappointingly abruptly, and new elements seem increasingly out-of-place. It also explains the odd plot hole, such as how TK Baha can be both dead in his Arid Badlands home and a zombie in his place near Hallow's End. Marcus...simply forgot a few details as his story dragged on.
      • It should be obvious that the original story takes place entirely before any of the DLC. In fact, canon-wise, they all happen in order, non-concurrently. Yes, even Moxxie.
      • Given that he seems to be narrating the main story as well...
    • You did accomplish something. You defeated the Destroyer, and that's all that really mattered. Bandits are nothing compared to something that could destroy the universe eventually.
      • As of the 4th DLC, every single boss in the game respawns or shows up in the Underdome... except the Destroyer. Bandits, Lancers, and zombies be damned - in the end, you really did save Pandora.
  • One thing that has and always will bug me about this game is the fact that nobody, no one single person in this entire game, ever blinks! When I first started playing, I could tell something was off, but I didn't know what, then I started looking at the eyes, the cold, dead, unblinking eyes!
    • Pandora is just so dangerous and the people living there so badass that the inhabitants have trained their bodies so that blinking is now unnecessary.
  • How did the rogue Claptraps get Steele's body? Wasn't it, you know, devoured?
  • The fourth DLC, Claptrap's Revolution, bugs me. Chronologically, it takes place last, after the main storyline and all the other DLC, yet none of the returning characters recognize you (Tannis explicitly greets you as a stranger). Even the various new areas within the DLC are inconsistent - after you finish the DLC and destroy the ninja Claptrap, if you revisit any other areas, he'll still be talking to you over the intercoms. Marcus dies in the final boss battle but he'll be right back in his shop and never say anything about it when you return to town. You fight a roboticized version of Commander Steele which should be impossible considering her body was either destroyed or trapped inside the vault. Nothing about this DLC makes any sense!
    • A Claptrap Did It. Also, if I remember right, Marcus said he made up the part about him dying in the end of the story just to attract the ladies.
  • All of the DLC takes place after the main story, so why the heck does the game let you play through the DLC on your first playthrough? If, like me, you bought the game of the year edition that includes all the DLC and you are unaware they are meant to be played post-game, then you are going to be extremely confused if you get curious and visit the new locations. The game practically encourages this confusion, because it lets you visit the new areas from fast travel stations not only before beating the game, but before you unlock fast travel! So for the first 2-6 hours of the game, these areas you shouldn't visit yet are the only areas you can fast travel too! Huh?
    • Zombie Island and Mad Moxxi don't matter chronologically.
    • Unreliable Narrator telling a frame story for an Excuse Plot game.
    • The DLC areas also don't actually spoil the main plot line, so doing them first doesn't really change anything. In fact, one gives the official, but incorrect explanation of the ending. If you finished the game you would recognize this, but if you didn't, you aren't being told how it ends beyond that "the Vault Hunters found the Vault," which is really pretty obvious.
    • Considering the Excuse Plot, I don't really think anyone was actually all that confused going into the DLC. The Vault Hunters finding the Vault isn't exactly shocking and none of the DLC mention what's actually in the vault.
  • At the end of the game, it's implied that the guardian angel misled you into gathering the parts to the vault key and opening the vault so that you would end up defeating the Destroyer before it could get free and thus saving the universe (or at least Pandora) from annihilation. Except ... wasn't the only reason the Destroyer was a threat at all was because you unlocked the door and released it? Wouldn't it have been easier and much less risky (what if you failed to kill it?) to simply destroy the vault key and leave it locked away within the vault forever? (Wasn't that the goal of the Guardians? So, weren't they technically good guys?)
    • Fan Wank perhaps, but the implication is that the Destroyer would eventually become strong enough to break out of the vault without the keys. So, the vault must be opened every two hundred years and it must be defeated keep it weak enough to contain.
  • If Skagzilla can jump THAT high, what exactly is keeping it inside the "pen"? Not to mention that it's easily big enough to climb over the walls.
    • Nothing is keeping it inside the pen, it's just too busy trying to kill you to worry about getting out. All you have to do to "free" it is stand in the correct place and wait for it to leap at you.
  • If Pandora is supposed to have 90 hour days, why did they even bother to put in a (very short) day/night cycle at all?
    • The same reason almost every game does it, to go "look, we have a day and night cycle."
  • I can accept basically all the headscratchers thus far as proceeding from Rule of Cool or Rule of Funny or Unreliable Narrator or whatever, but this one really burns: how did the Hyperion corporation, who presumably built and programmed the GA, and therefore defined its capabilities, know (or enable the GA to find out) what the Vault really contained? This was supposed to be a highly advanced alien civilization pulling out all the stops (including the stop preventing said civilization from going down the tubes (if I haven't beaten this metaphor to death yet) in order to contain this thing; the fact that the GA twigged implies she had at least that level of sophistication. If anyone should have that, it's the Lance, considering they allegedly owe their superiority to Eridian technology, but they obviously don't. WTF? (There's an argument to be made for emergent phenomena, ie, the ability of sufficiently sophisticated systems to do things you totally didn't program them to do, but a) this was played with in DLC 4 and b) it seems to me that even if the GA did develop the ability to discover the truth, she wouldn't know where to look.)
    • Hard to phrase, but basically: the Guardian Angel was working with Tannis. Therefore, she had access to information neither Hyperion nor Atlas did.
    • There is no actual evidence that the Guardian Angel is related to Hyperion in any way beyond using one of their satellites to communicate with the player.