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Why Borderlands 2’s soul-crushing difficulty is a good thing (+1 reason its not)

Hello. You are receiving this blog from the past! Technically. I will basically be posting my blogs from my main blog site to here, and see if anything sticks. Hope you enjoy!

Hello Readers!

I am on my second play through of Borderlands 2. I beat the game alone, after my buddies wussed out, and found it extremely difficult to beat, yet still I won. Then I started again.

And it's as difficult as shit.

Now some of you might ask, why use that particular word? Why is that to such a degree of swearing? Well I'll tell you why.

It's true.

Borderlands 2 is so difficult, that it is literally the only word that can express it. There is no other word, in any other language that can express how difficult it is except that one. But this isn't Dark soul's difficulty per se, it's more overbearingly hard, but once you let it break you it's not as frustrating. I feel that this is the way to play the game, if not with friends(that's really the best way), because it adds some cool stuff to the experience. Let me break it down for you:

It makes you think tactically

Before I played BL2 alone on true vault hunter, or even with my buddies I would simply run into combat situations, without a care for the guns I used, just as long as they shot good and boomed real nice.

That ain't gonna fly in true vault hunter mode.


Now when I grab gear, I make sure to exploit its ability against certain enemies, and I am more cautious to make sure my guns are up to the task of what they need to be to survive, rather than swap them out with a better stat, but crap use gun. I now hold onto guns longer, and try to avoid replacing them with anything but what I will use. Now I think carefully about where I put my turret, and think about a good place to take cover, because crouching isn't all that effective when half your body is still above said cover. It's made me think more about how I do things, what guns I should use, and how to approach things. In short, it made me try to use some tactics rather than simply run around shooting for dear life.

I mean I still do that, but now I think about it a little more. Yep.

It helps to have a friend who doesn't judge you for that.

It makes you play side-missions

Let me tell you a little secret: while a decent amount of borderlands 2 quests seem dull on the surface, the humor and pop-culture references surrounding them make them really interesting. But I didn't play them much because I was too busy blowing through the main quest.

You'll quickly find that's not a viable option in true vault hunter mode.

Its kinda like this, really

If you attempt to get through the game without doing side-quests, not only are you missing out on some bitchin loot, and fun dialogue and references, but you will get your ass kicked. And while that may happen in the side quests, in the main quests, you will REALLY get your ass kicked. You are outnumbered, outgunned, and you need to get tough enough to deal with that. And I really appreciate that, because it helped flesh out Pandora, and gave me a better feel for this world. It really improves the world and the characters, teaching me things I didn't know about many of the characters, or their various experiences. It made me care more, and made things funnier in context, as opposed to generally funnier. They are also pretty fun, and like I said, you get some epic loot. Here are some examples: a talking shield/gun, a Hyperion shotgun (which is so incredible it would blow your brains away) and all sorts of customized costumes. I didn't pay them much heed, but after fighting a riff on teenage mutant ninja turtles, and RAK-MAN!, I have to keep doing them to see what crazy crap will happen next. Also: 3 dog reference. HELL YESH!!!!! And the main game is almost impossible if you don't do this, so I am glad I got forced to do it, because now I want to do it. Which is pretty good, considering that almost impossible thing.

The Loot fest only gets better

Yeah, the loots always pretty good (relatively speaking) but I found myself getting more and more excited to open chests as I explored and did quests, just to see what crazy thing I would discover next. It's a small, obvious thing, but this correlates directly with the side mission thing, so I thought I'd throw it out there.

Imagine that, but like, 700 times better.

Ammunition shortage

Ah yes, but now we come to the dark side. See, borderlands 2 has this irritating habit of never giving you enough ammo, all the time. It doesn't matter so much when you're playing, as enemies drop all sorts of ammo, and chances are one gun won't go dry, but then there are the boss battles. Specifically BNK4R, or Bunker. There's never enough ammo, and the respawn rate of ammo is pitiful. The main problem is that while there is enough for a clean run, killing the boss without dying, that never happens. And the bosses always regenerate health, which isn't an issue until you realize that all your guns are dry, and you're all out of money to buy more. Money is basically useless anyway, but once you run out you can't buy more ammo for this cheap damn fight, so you'll have to pray that you get lucky enough to grab some and get through the battle.

Hate that guy

Aside from that though, it all depends on the perspective from which you approach the situation. At first I found it to be a negative, but upon reflection I find it highly improves my game experience, and am glad for it. But what do you, the reader think? I want your opinion! Do you disagree or have something to add? You may get your name in an insignificant blog if you do! But only if you have something to add. That's important.
TELL ME. Seriously.

Hope to discuss with you!

- “If you don't like bacteria, you're on the wrong planet.” ― Stewart Brand

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About Gamemaniac3434one of us since 11:25 PM on 02.01.2013

Who am I? I'm an avid gamer, beer snob, coffee snob and aspiring microbiologist. I love all sorts of different genres of games and different games from different years and as of recent years I've tried to get more into multiplayer games. I also really love microbiology and if you get me started on it, you will never get me to shut up about it.
-Gamemaniac3434 on everything, but Nintendo services so let me know if you add me on that and I'll possibly add you:

And now I write for a website! Check it out if you want!

Also, I stream now.

And twitter.