There's nothing quite like Borderlands. Other games offer some of the same characteristics, from the art style and crass humor to the progression-based systems built on top of a first-person shooter, but none bring them all together in quite the same way. There's some good news for fans of the series, especially if they use AMD products, because Gearbox Software and 2K announced today that Borderlands 3 debuts on September 13 and will be very AMD-friendly.
We specify those who use AMD products because the companies said Borderlands 3 was "developed from the ground up with AMD" and that it's "optimized for top performance and incredible gaming experiences on AMD Radeon graphics cards and Ryzen CPUs." The game will still work with Nvidia graphics cards and Intel CPUs, of course. But these optimizations could offer even better performance on AMD-based systems. We'll find out when it launches.
Epic Games Store PC Exclusive
Now the news that might be a little bit harder for PC gamers to accept. Borderlands 3 will be exclusive to the Epic Games Store at launch. The game is expected to reach "additional PC digital storefronts," but it won't do so until April 2020, and the companies didn't specify which other retailers. Fans of the series will either have to buy this release from Epic Games or wait more than half-a-year to buy it from an alternative game marketplace.
There are also four different versions of the game: Standard, Deluxe, Super Deluxe and Collector's. They cost a respective $60, $80, $100 and $250. The first three editions are available on PC; the Collector's Edition appears to be limited to consoles and includes some real-life bonuses. More information is available on the game's pre-order page.
Borderlands Digital Releases Available Now
This announcement kicks off The Year of Borderlands. Gearbox and 2K are celebrating with a bunch of digital releases today.
Borderlands: Game of the Year Edition is available today for PC, PS4 and Xbox One with "ultra HD remastered graphics, significant quality-of-life content updates and all add-on content included." There's also a new Ultra HD Texture Pack "that increases the visual fidelity of Borderlands: The Handsome Collection on consoles and provides a visual upgrade for Borderlands 2, Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel and all the game add-ons for both titles on PC."
Most of these announcements should be welcomed by fans of Borderlands. The series hasn't seen a release since 2015, and that was The Handsome Collection, which brought the other titles together for console players. But enthusiasm hasn't seemed to wane: Gearbox and 2K said that Borderlands 2 still has 1 million monthly active players despite launching in 2012, and the overall franchise has sold 41 million copies.
The main question is how people will respond to the timed PC exclusivity to the Epic Games Store. On the plus side, the companies aren't pulling a bait-and-switch by offering pre-orders on other marketplaces and then switching over to the Epic Games Store. Nor are they making Borderlands 3 truly exclusive to this store, as console versions are available elsewhere and the PC version will reportedly hit other stores come 2020. But still, on the negative side, many PC gamers simply don't want to deal with yet another game storefront and launcher (just ask the Corsair Game Launcher Launcher).
Image credit: Gearbox Software and 2K