Borderlands, the RPG loot-a-thon shooter from Gearbox and 2K has been pretty well supported with post-release content. The first, the Zombie Island of Dr Ned was an exercise in how to do self-contained episodic content right. The second, Mad Moxxieâ€™s underdome riot was a less-than awesome arena mode.
Letâ€™s take a look at the latest add-on for the game, The Secret Armory of General Knoxx, and see if itâ€™s worth your money.
Intended for players whoâ€™ve reached the gameâ€™s level-cap, The secret armory of General Knoxx picks up at the end of the main game, continuing its story â€“ so itâ€™s not really recommended if you havenâ€™t finished it yet.
Note that there are two difficulty scales. Select your first playthrough and the enemies will spawn at or around level 35. After your second, theyâ€™re at a much tougher 50. To compensate for the new level cap of 61, enemies are quite a bit tougher â€“ and I found myself dying fairly regularly in the beginning.
After selecting the requisite location from a fast-travel station, youâ€™ll be reacquainted with a host of familiar characters â€“ who bring with them some of the funniest dialogue in a videogame. The game originally failed to capitilise on the inherent humour in the characters and situations that the initial trailers displayed. Thatâ€™s been fixed here, and I found myself laughing quite frequently.
Youâ€™ll notice that much of the new location is connected through a series of broken highways â€“ making vehicles quite a focus in this add-on. To make the driving more interesting, there are numerous new vehiclesÂ to be found, including a mammothine vehicle thatâ€™s capable of seating all four of the vault-hunters â€“ each with his own unique weapon. Driving mechanics are still let down a little by the gameâ€™s strange physics. Itâ€™s all too easy to get your vehicle stuck, making frequent vehicle respawns necessary.
The biggest problem with the DLC though is the lack of teleporters, in the form of New-U stations. The new areas in the game are impressively vast, but without the means to teleport, youâ€™ll find yourself doing long treks between areas.
Thereâ€™s a host of new enemies in the game, bringing some much needed vitality to the world of Pandora. Youâ€™ll encounter many, many soldiers of the Crimson Lance â€“ the military wing of the Atlas corporation, whoâ€™re a little more than mad at you following the events at the vault. Youâ€™ll also encounter sneaky female Ninja Assassins; Robot Mechs; skag-mounted midget riders;large, spider-like drifters as well as a number of re-skinned enemies. Thereâ€™s evenÂ an nigh invincible secret boss, as advertised by highway signage.
Should you make your way through the expansion, youâ€™ll be awarded with plenty of what makes Borderlands so addictive â€“ loot. Thereâ€™s a lot of new loot to be discovered â€“ including some rather elusive super-rare items that are well worth seeking.
The Secret Armory of General Knoxx has taken the best of both prior bits of DLC, and put them together. It features the hilarious narrative of Zombie Island, and the difficulty of Mad Moxxieâ€™s â€“ all in one package. In short, itâ€™s exactly what made you fall in love with Borderlands in the first place, and more.
For the 10 hours of gameplay that The Secret ArmoryÂ adds, itâ€™s well worth the asking price â€“ and comes highly recommended to fans of the game.
The Secret Armory of General Knoxx is available on the PSN for R65.00, Xbox Live for 800 MS Points and on Gearboxâ€™s site for PC for $9.99 (R77 at time of writing).
Borderlands : The Secret Armory of General Knoxx was reviewed by Geoffrey Tim