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T.F.T.B. Game Informer article (August issue)

posted by DragonButter on - last edited by Blind Sniper - Viewed by 2.5K users

I have retyped/reformatted this article from this month's issue of Game Informer, because I figured I might as well share this. Especially for those who don't have a Game Informer subscription and are currently looking for more news concerning this game. If this is a sort of thing that isn't allowed on the forums - feel free to remove this, mods.

Now, for the article:


"When Telltale announced it was working on an episodic adventure series based on Gearbox's loot-obsessed shooter series, Borderlands, we questioned whether the screwball universe was conducive to meaningful, player-driven storytelling. After a 40-minute demo that set up the main characters and narrative arc for the season, we're still not convinced.

Tales from the Borderlands focuses on two playable protagonists: Rhys, a Hyperion data miner looking to make his way up the corporate ladder, and Fiona, his shady friend/rival who we still don't know much about. In the first episode, the two characters take turns retelling recent events that to a third party, which the player then plays through, crafting the direction of the story. This narrative structure is perhaps the best thing that Telltale has going for it, as it introduces the concept of an unreliable narrator to the mix, allowing the characters - and by proxy the player - to embellish the story with larger-than-life antics."

[...]

"Things eventually heat up when the surreptitious deal leads Rhys to Pandora, accompanied by his cowardly best friend who's just waiting to be sacrificed, Vaughn. The sheltered yuppies stick out like sore thumbs on Pandora and it doesn't take them long to rub a group of psychotic bandits the wrong way.

The ensuing battle highlights how Telltale is attempting to capture the action of the Borderlands series. Rhys takes control of a Hyperion mech, and can choose between several weapon types, then aim them at the attacking bandits. These actions are more elaborate than those found in The Walking Dead and The Wolf Among Us, but it's still not compelling. In the same way that nobody plays Borderlands for meaningful story choices, nobody plays a Telltale game for the QTE action sequences."

[...]

"Our look at Tales from the Borderlands constituted only part of the first of five planned episodes. During that time, some jokes landed, more than a few fell flat, and numerous callbacks to characters and elements of the series reminded us of what we love about Borderlands. Beyond those superficial references, however, most of Tales from the Borderlands reminded us of what doesn't matter in Borderlands. Now the rest of Tales needs to prove why it should."

-- Jeff Marchiafava

22 Comments
  • He's not even the same person who does the reviews for the Telltale games (I believe Kimberly reviews them) so it's pretty obvious he's not a fan of the format.

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    Blind Sniper Moderator

    Hm, nice find. Thanks for sharing!

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    FLog62 BANNED

    Is this...legal?

    I swear it isn't, I think someone was pevented from doing this kind of thing on the bioware forum recently.

    I think you're allowed to quote snippets but not a whole article.

    Aside from that, very excited for this game, although the reviewer didn't seem to be!

  • I feel odd, I want to defend the game, but at the same time I haven't seen it for myself yet.

  • I think its going to be a huge flop.

  • I hope anyone who has the slightest interest in Tales From The Borderlands won't let Jeff Marchiafava's opinion prevent them from playing it.

  • Wow I was really looking forward to this game but now I dunno :/

  • I have seen quite a few negative reviews for TWD and TWAU, didn't change the fact that I enjoyed them, so I'm not that worried.

    Also, this reviewer's view of the Borderlands univers is pretty irritating. Yet again, another person that completely disregards the potential of its lore and characters because "it's just a shoot'n'loot, it can't possibly have anything else to offer".

    With that said, if this guy didn't get into it, maybe it'll be hard for the newcomers to get into the Borderlands univers. Let's just hope that the half of the episode that they haven't shown holds some more good surprises.

    Thanks for sharing.

    • I found two previews on youtube about the same 30-40 minutes presentation. Check it out.

      In this one they are kind of on the fence too, they left intrigued but not conquered. One of the guy really didn't like the fact that Rhys is such a bad guy.

      This one is a lot more positive. She was skeptical, but the presentation convinced her and now she's really excited.

      Looking forward to learn more at PAX Prime Seattle.

      • "One of the guy really didn't like the fact that Rhys is such a bad guy."
        Lol he probably don't know shit about BL

      • I remember seeing those 2 videos, I loved the one with Hannah since she was good-spirited about it.

        The one with those 2 IGN dudes, I dunno, it was just really awkward the way they were talking about it. The stoned guy on the left didn't seem he cared at all.

        Nevertheless, I'm still excited, hopefully the first episode will be around the 2-hour mark.

    • Yet again, another person that completely disregards the potential of its lore and characters because "it's just a shoot'n'loot, it can't possibly have anything else to offer".

      You are absolutely right. I barely managed to read it myself. These two statements made by him proves exactly just that:

      These actions are more elaborate than those found in The Walking Dead and The Wolf Among Us, but it's still not compelling. In the same way that nobody plays Borderlands for meaningful story choices, nobody plays a Telltale game for the QTE action sequences."

      [...]

      During that time, some jokes landed, more than a few fell flat, and numerous callbacks to characters and elements of the series reminded us of what we love about Borderlands. Beyond those superficial references, however, most of Tales from the Borderlands reminded us of what doesn't matter in Borderlands

      With that being said, people should not be discouraged by this review as it's clearly coming from a guy who is hardly familiar with the Borderlands franchise, or at the very least failed to see the potential that it has for storytelling.

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