Borderlands: The Handsome Collection, The same kind of crazy… just more of it.

It looks like remasters are going to be around for a while. It’s something of a double-edged sword, really. On the down-side, the remastered titles are not exactly new games, and if you got through them on the previous generation, you may not want to suffer the extra expense of getting the upgraded version. On the upside, these remastered titles bring a set of great games to the latest console hardware, which I awesome if you haven’t played them before. Even f you have, and are willing to shell out the cash, they’re of great benefit to fans who can’t play favourite older titles on newer consoles, thanks to a lack of backwards compatibility. And most of them, to sweeten the deal, have all kinds of extras included.

In those terms, Borderlands: The Handsome Collection offers really great value. It includes two games Borderlands 2 and Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel as well as all DLC for those two titles. The end result is a couple of hundred hours’ worth of play. And it’s Borderlands, still one of the best adventure-based shooters of recent years.

The remastering is there, too, bringing these two games to life in glorious 1080p, with added flash and glitz. You will be excused for not noticing it at first Borderlands distinctive visual style can make it challenging to see all the tweaks. But the steady frame rates and higher resolution make the game very appealing.

It also rewards returning players with Golden Keys and Badass Tokens, which really help things along. And these rewards are generous, giving you a real leg-up on the action. You can also import characters from previous generation versions of these games obviously using the characters specific to the individual games as dictated. That’s another great advantage, but the overall feel and massive scale of the games and DLC packages (including new characters) may just tempt you to work your way through the insane glory of these games from the beginning.

Another great thing that it offers is couch-co-op. Up to four players can now play the game locally, using a four way split screen to take on the bad guys of Pandora and its moon. Borderlands 2, particularly, shines here, with smooth frame rates throughout. The Pre-Sequel does less well, with frame rates that dip below where they should be. It isn’t ruinous, but it is definitely there.

Another little downside stems from the fact that the games need to be booted individually. You cannot start one without completely quitting out of the other. Once again, this isn’t a massive problem, but a central menu for both titles would have been a nice addition to the package.

Other than that, nothing much has changed and that’s a great thing. We’re still given the massive, exciting and completely insane Borderlands experience, complete with all the weird skill trees, tons of playable characters and massive amount of guns.

On the whole, this really is one of the best remasters we have seen to date. It offers the player an absolute truck-load to get through (even just one of these titles is a long and entertaining prospect) and reinvigorates one of the best shooter franchises around, bringing it kicking and screaming into the new generation like an angry midget marauder. And for those that have never experienced Pandora and all its craziness (as well as those fantastic randomised weapons) before, this is a great place to start! All in all, this collection is an absolute winner.

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