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'Borderlands 2' an addictive role-playing dream

GamingPlayStation 3Microsoft Corporation

It's easy to feel overwhelmed by 2K Games' psychedelic hybrid first-person shooter "Borderlands 2," released last month for the XBox 360, Playstation 3 and Microsoft Windows.

Combining shooters like "Call Of Duty," role-players like "The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim" and open-world classics like "Grand Theft Auto," BL2 could be the future of video games.

Why be a single confining genre when you can be three or more?

It's also stuffed with geek chic like skill trees, upgrades and modification options that would make a scientist go bald.

And did we mention the guns? Gamers will have their pick of scores (their PR folks say "gazillions) of pistols, machineguns and rockets to chose when moving down strange mutants and spider-like aliens.

BL2 is a perfect release after a long, hard day at work, but not necessarily school since this game is probably too violent for very young children.

This  sprawling epic takes gamers back to the strange world of Pandora, where gamers choose from a class of warriors four loot-raiding adventurers called Vault Hunters who team up to take down the evil mastermind known as Handsome Jack.

The storyline, while not the stuff of legend, is just fine in the solo campaign, but will offer hours of fun for online gamers.

Newcomers to the series shouldn't be put off by the innocuous pop-up comparisons and intricate upgrades for your characters, but be warned that free time and an intense love of role-playing and modding is essential.

BL2 has a dazzling comic book look and feel that will remind veteran gamers of classics like Ubisoft's 2003 hit, XIII. The colors are cartoonish, yet hypnotic.

The game has it share of flaws; including frustrating camera glitches when shooting down enemies in the game's heavily armed vehicles. Newcomers will likely also find themselves confused when comparing the strengths and weaknesses of weapons.

BL2 is an addictive feast for the eyes preferable for gamers with a lot of time on their hands.

wlee@tribune.com

Twitter: @MidNoirCowboy

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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