Psycho Killer, DLC: Borderlands 2 Adds Character, Levels

By Adam Smith on March 25th, 2013 at 2:01 pm.

IGN carry the news that Gearbox are raising the level cap in Borderlands 2, and adding a new difficulty mode and item tier. There is also a short video showing the latest Vault Hunter murdering bandits – he’s a psycho by the name of Krieg. The level cap will be raised to 61, the new mode scales monsters to the highest level in your party and the item tier provides ultra-rare pearlescent gear. That all makes sense, but the prices and distribution are slightly more confusing. The new difficulty mode is free to all but the level cap rise costs $4.99, unless you’re a season pass holder in which case it’s free. Kriege isn’t included in the season pass though and will cost around $10. You can see him below.

The next video only contains a single image but it’s far more informative.

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75 Comments »

  1. Archipelagos says:

    Good to see SEGA’s money being put to use.

  2. FurryLippedSquid says:

    Qu’est-ce que c’est?

  3. Feferuco says:

    Selling a level cap is kinda lame and then not adding DLC character to a season pass is lamer.

    • Vinraith says:

      The season pass explicitly said it was 4 story DLC’s, and the previous DLC character wasn’t part of it either. Speaking as a season pass holder, I’m completely unbothered.

      • grundus says:

        Yep. It seems like a lot of people are moaning about Gearbox’s definiton of ‘Season Pass’, but they made it very, very clear that it was just four campaign DLCs and nothing more, additional characters and other bits not included. I was surprised they didn’t include any level cap increases in any of the three DLCs so far though. I’m a little disappointed they didn’t match Borderlands’ cap of 69 too.

        • Aiming Dave says:

          IIRC, Borderlands 1 went from 50 to 60ish, then later from 60ish to 69.

          • welverin says:

            The first increase took it to 61 (it went to eleven), the second one took it to 69 (another joke masquerading as a level cap increase).

        • Vinraith says:

          Based on discussion from the devs, I’m actually surprised they raised it at all. The skill trees were not designed to be remotely balanced beyond 50 skill points. That doesn’t really bother me, mind you, but it seemed to bother them enough to prevent them from raising the cap for quite some time. I don’t know what they’ve done to mitigate that issue, incidentally, or whether they’ve just decided it doesn’t matter.

          • welverin says:

            I haven’t seen anything to that matter, what I heard Randy say the delay was about is that they wanted to time it appropriately and that most players simply hadn’t hit the cap and they didn’t want to do it too soon.

            Mind you this was back at the end of last year, but then the numbers of maxed characters was well under 35%, and ma have been around 15%. I’d guess that by now the number of people (still playing) at the cap has is significantly higher and now justifies an increase.

          • Baines says:

            Back in early February, Pitchford said that they had balanced the skill trees for a level 50 cap.

            “That’s by design. Some of those things start to become game-breaking. This has actually created a huge problem for us. We designed the skills really well this time, but we did, for better or for worse, make a lot of the decisions with the knowledge that there will be no more skill points available to put into any trees after you reach level 50. We knew the impossible configurations. Some of the design exploits that. Some of the impossible configurations, if they were possible, would break the game. Sometimes very literally. “Oh, that’s gonna blow memory. Your Xbox will crash.””

            People flipped out of course, wondering how oblivious Gearbox could be to not even consider a future level cap increase when designing the game.

            As a result of that storm, Pitchford said that they were committed to delivering a level cap increase, even though it would be costly for Gearbox to do it. He went on to tweet: “I’ll say: 100% chance of a level cap increase this year, but 50\50 on unforeseen consequences that some people will rage about.”

          • tetracycloide says:

            they just told you what they did to mitigate it: they added a new difficult tier. which incidentally indicates they were right and that a level cap increase would have broken the game given the difficulty levels that were available previously.

      • Feferuco says:

        I spoke as someone who didn’t even know what the season pass consisted of and just imagined it’d mean all DLC from now on. If they specified it…. still, can’t help but think had I bought it I wouldn’t like to see DLC not included, even knowing full well it could happen.

      • LintMan says:

        “The season pass explicitly said it was 4 story DLC’s”

        Yes, that’s what I’m expecting. But a $4.99 level cap raise doesn’t sound like it will provide much of a story. If this DLC is in addition to some upcoming unamed 4th stroy-based DLC, I’m fine with that. But if this IS the 4th DLC for the Season Pass, I’m gonna be mad.

        • Vinraith says:

          I’m 99% sure the level cap raise is an unexpected bonus, not the 4th DLC.

  4. x1501 says:

    Wow, charging $4.99 for a level cap raise is a new low. At least the $1.99 Horse Armor DLC had actual new content.

    • ColdDeath says:

      they are adding the new Tier of Equipment (Pearlescent), i’d call that new content… also they rebalanced pretty much the entire game with this DLC, which is quite a bit more work than just “set max level to different number”.

      • Baka says:

        Do you maybe have any more info on that? I completely dropped the game when the NG+ endgame became one-shotting with The Bee versus getting one-shot. Didn’t even finish the last two DLCs because of how unfun gunfights were. I’d LOVE if they somehow fixed that.

        • ColdDeath says:

          since the DLC isn’t even out yet, no i don’t, sorry. I am only going by what info has been provided by Gearbox. While their information reliability has suffered in terms of Aliens, i still see information on Borderlands 2 relatively at face value from them, but i guess if someone is dubious of it, all i can say is “wait for reviews and users that take a closer look”

        • SkittleDiddler says:

          I’d love to see a massive revamp of the NG+ mechanics. It seems like the devs didn’t put much thought into challenging the player outside of opponents with shield draining OHKs and more health. The item drops are horribly unbalanced too — I’ve found multiple green weapons worth more than $100K apiece, but purple drops have been vastly underpriced and underpowered by comparison.

          I’ve been extremely frustrated with my Playthrough 2 experience so far, to the point where I’m considering taking a permanent break from B2 and concentrating on another shooter.

          • Baines says:

            I think Gearbox’ whole approach to a level-based FPS has been flawed since the start. The way they handle levels pretty much guarantees balance issues will crop up.

          • Wedge says:

            Hahaha, basically. I quit the first one after getting to the hub city, realising the maths for their level and damage scaling were totally fubared. Good to know they never fixed shit.

    • Svant says:

      Afaik there are also brand new skills and whatnot so that is also new content.

      • x1501 says:

        I sure hope so. Because unless they’re also adding new weapon meshes and effects to go with “Pearlescent”, I wouldn’t exactly call some rearranged stats and a new weapon name prefix worthwhile new content. Their free patches to first Borderlands offered more than that.

  5. SkittleDiddler says:

    More DLC shenanigans. I was hoping Gearbox would be a little more considerate for their Borderlands fanbase and give us a free level-cap increase this time around, but I’m really not shocked by this latest news.

    And not including newer DLC content in the season pass? That’s just adding insult to injury.

    • ColdDeath says:

      you mean like they now have 5 DLC included in the Season Pass instead of the four they advertised it with? Like that? Yeah, totally shitty of them…. *facepalm*

      • SkittleDiddler says:

        Be that as it may, Gearbox are still leaving content out of the season pass. By the original industry definition, a season pass includes any and all DLC material that will be released for a given product.

        I can’t be the only one bothered by the fact that certain publishers are now bypassing the traditional definition altogether by selectively stocking their season pass deals. Not that I’m a fan of the idea of season passes to begin with, but at least the pubs could stop being so fucking stingy.

        • Vinraith says:

          Personally, I was thrilled to be able to buy the core content DLC at a discount without having to pay for new characters I’ll never play or other “minor crap” DLC that I’d never use. I suppose one way to go would have been to have a higher priced “traditional season pass” that included all the good stuff and all the crap, and a “core story” season pass that only included the major content DLC, but I’m pretty fine with things as they are.

        • ColdDeath says:

          there is no such thing as an “industry definition” of a Season Pass. The only thing they have in common is that you get the DLC included in the Pass for less than you’d pay individually for the DLC… which is exactly what this one does as well.

          • SkittleDiddler says:

            When season passes started becoming a thing, the “industry definition” simply meant that you got every forthcoming DLC included when you bought into them. Nowadays a season pass consists of whatever a publisher feels like adding to it. The whole packaging process as it is now is highly disingenuous when compared to its earlier iterations.

        • PoulWrist says:

          A “season” pass would for me describe a period of time, finitely defined as the end of one rotation. If you buy a season pass for your favorite sports team, you don’t expect to go to every match they will play from now on till the day either you or they cease to exist, do you?

          • GiantPotato says:

            In sports, a season pass is offered for the sake of convenience so that fans don’t have to buy a ticket to every game. But that convenience is key, you wouldn’t buy a season pass and then expect it to exclude the month of April, or let you attend 2 of 5 postseason games UNLESS you added the Postseason SuperCharge pack. Wait, was that was the TotalAccess Gold package? No, that one lets you run around on the field when the game gets rained out. Hang on a second, let me look it up again…

            The point is, when I buy something called a “Season Pass”, I want to not be bothered to buy things again for one “Season”. It’s a simple transaction, and Gearbox doesn’t HAVE to offer it, but if they did I would be more kindly inclined to buy their stuff.

          • SkittleDiddler says:

            True, but a) we’re not talking about sports here, and b) the use of the term season pass is highly perplexing as a descriptor for what these packages are supposed to provide anyway.

  6. Blackcompany says:

    Won’t buy the lvl up on principal. Here is to hoping a mod unlocks it. As for new character…I wanted a newclass but not for $10. My time with BL2 has I believe come to an end. And with these practices so has my buying from Gearbox.

    • Shuck says:

      Since the level-up includes new content, then no, a mod won’t “unlock” it, as it’s not there to unlock.

    • GiantPotato says:

      Bear in mind that the game has to be rebalanced up to level 61 and any new items/monsters have to be created and tested. It’s not as simple as replacing the number ’50′ with ’61′ and charging $10 for it.

      Unless they didn’t bother to do any of that stuff, in which case it’s a complete rip-off. I have the season pass, so I guess I’ll find out.

      • Spazmok says:

        rebalanced, eh? add more mildly reskined bandits! raise their hit points! change their enemy level to 61, call it a day.

        • GiantPotato says:

          It’s certainly possible for them to crap something out and charge for it, but in that case it would be pretty dumb for them to offer it as its own expansion. If they wanted to monetize the level cap, it would make a lot more sense for them to raise it by 3 levels * number of DLC packs you bought. Since that’s not the approach they’re taking, I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt until I try it.

  7. Tomac says:

    Is there really any point to a level cap increase besides addition skill points? Will any of the content require you to be 61 to complete?

    Oh well, i got the season pass so i guess i’m getting it free anyway. Couldn’t care less about the new character.

    • grundus says:

      I imagine you’d have to be able to level up in order to finish the new difficulty level, if the vanilla game is anything to go by being 11 levels below other players will make the game practically impossible to finish.

  8. Wang Tang says:

    I’ll gladly buy all this stuff. As soon as the season pass + all DLC which is not included therein (wtf?) costs 10€ :-)

  9. guygodbois00 says:

    This reminds me of prof. Farnsworth’s “Good news, everyone”.

  10. lizzardborn says:

    And now kids you know how the poor cows feel every day of their lives … the DLC in general offer remarkably low ROI to the player.

    Anecdotal evidence amongst my friends with big steam backlogs – we just wait for GOTY/GOLD etc edition … one year later, for half the money, all the content and everything fixed. They are hurting day 1 sales this way in the long run.

  11. GiantPotato says:

    I guess Gearbox can release whatever they want and price it however they want, but I bought the first season pass to avoid the hassle of having to parse through their DLC offerings. I see 1-2 new DLC announcements per day, in ADDITION to news about new games. Am I really expected to remember that the Mecromancer class is free IF you pre-order but IS NOT included with the season pass, NOR is the skin pack BUT you can buy it together with the Mecromancer, etc. etc.

    I don’t think any of it is a bad deal for the price, but it sure is irritating to wade through all of this stuff.

  12. Surlywombat says:

    Even taking in account a “Season pass” for DLC is a relatively new concept and therefore there is no accepted standard, and the fact they said it would include 4 story DLC.

    It still seems to be undermining the whole idea a bit. If they want consumers on board with this season pass thing then the best and easiest way, is to have the season pass mean you get all the DLC. Limiting the season pass only adds another obstacle on the path to purchase (the “can I be bothered to look what this season pass actually includes” step).

    Especially since the people building season passes are the ones most likely to be the “completionists” and so get most pissed when something isn’t included.

  13. Synesthesia says:

    haha! this pun works even better in spanish, de ele cé (d l c) sounds remarkably similar to qu’est-ce que c’est.

  14. PoulWrist says:

    I am confused. Do I pay 4.99 and 9.99 to get all of it, or can I just buy the 9.99 guy and get lvl cap and more enemies?

  15. TsunamiWombat says:

    Anyone remember Gearbox’s lamenting about how THEY TOTALLY CAN’T RAISE THE LEVEL CAP BECAUSE IT’LL DESTROY BALANCE ?

    • mouton says:

      Would make sense if the game’s mechanics weren’t a mess in the first place.

    • Keymonk says:

      Which is why they (they said so themselves) have spent a lot of time and manpower on rebalancing the whole thing to add a third playthrough and QA the whole deal all over again. It’s not without reason they’re charging for it, even a token amount.

  16. Optimaximal says:

    Guys, guys…

    If you care, buy it…
    If you don’t care, don’t buy it…
    If you’re angry about the DLC stuff, don’t buy it…
    If you haven’t bought anything yet, wait for the GOTY edition…

    Simple solutions to a simple problem.

  17. Mario Figueiredo says:

    Excellent stuff.

    I’ll feel even better when I finally get the whole game plus all DLC and whatnot for the fantastic price of $15 sometime by the end of the year. I can wait.

    So.Much.Stuff.To.Play.

    • Vinraith says:

      There’s nothing wrong with waiting, of course, leastwise when you’ve got a huge backlog. That said, I paid $40 for the base game and another $30 for the DLC, and I’ve gotten 115 hours and counting out of the game. Suffice it to say I’m very comfortable with that game/cost ratio!

      • Mario Figueiredo says:

        It’s not been easy, I tell you. Not when everyone you know plus their mother is playing and enjoying it — I can’t stop telling me so. I do try to resist though.

        ~$70 for single game is a pill I still find hard to swallow. And Borderlands is really that type of game that only makes sense with the full DLC. But I won’t argue with you. That ratio is definitely better than many games I’ve played and will play in the future.

        • LintMan says:

          I’d say the base game is well worthwhile, even without the season pass DLC (or the mechromancer character or level cap DLCs).

          I have the season pass, and the additions are rather a mixed bag, totally not essential:
          - Captain Scarlet DLC was fun and enjoyable, with a cool new vehicle.
          - Mr Torgue DLC was funny, but fairly disappointing and didn’t add much that felt “new”. It is centered around arena combat, but they inexplicably fail to add replayable arena battles.
          - Sir Hammerlock DLC was kinda boring and lost our interest fairly early and we haven’t bothered to go back to it yet.

          So like I said: mixed bag, and also with a downward quality trend. If you can get it all in a big cheap bundle, that’s great, but if you don’t want to wait, just get the base game and don’t worry about the DLCs.

          • fish99 says:

            That’s disappointing to read since I own the season pass but haven’t played DLC 2&3, and didn’t even rate the first one that highly. Here’s hoping #4 is better.

          • Vinraith says:

            I’d agree that 2 was funny but lackluster in the gameplay department, but my friends and I have been having a great time with 3. I’d say the Pirate and Hammerlock DLC’s are at least as much fun as the base game, actually.

          • Keymonk says:

            I was personally fond of all the DLCs; I will say the base game is well worth it, though, DLC or not.

        • Strangerator says:

          “It’s not been easy, I tell you. Not when everyone you know plus their mother is playing and enjoying it ”

          For most games I would applaud waiting and buying GOTY, but Borderlands is best enjoyed with friends. If you wait until your friends are already bored of the game, you will either be playing solo or worse, playing with people who are just speed-grinding and not enjoying the whole experience. If you only play solo, then this point is moot.

        • GiantPotato says:

          The DLC is fun but definitely non-essential, you won’t notice any parts missing if you get just the base game.

  18. Nick says:

    Shame the vault hunter mode, item drops and item stat scaling are all fucked beyond the realm of fun. Which is odd as they really didn’t need more than a slight tweaking from BL1. But no, LOLBIGNUMBERS means a weapon lasts for about 3 levels then is next to useless, TVH mode is about stupid damage and orange weapons.. well I saw a whole two in the entire playthrough of the non DLC, and they were both shit.

    • SkittleDiddler says:

      Part of the fun of the first Borderlands was finding that perfect weapon and using it for multiple levels — I still have fond memories of running and gunning with my Siren and her pearl acid/fire/shock SMG from level 30 up until I found a suitable replacement at level 60. Borderlands 2′s weapon drop system offers nothing comparable to that experience; even the supposed “legendary” weapons are a pale reflection of the oranges and pearlescent drops from the first game.

      I hope the supposed rebalance fixes that.

  19. DickSocrates says:

    What’s the point of a season pass that doesn’t include all the DLC? Why not include it all? Why make the revoliting world of DLC even more obnoxious? Is it because Randy PItchford is a skunk? I hope SEGA effing clean them out.

  20. tangoliber says:

    Season Pass explicitly promised 4 campaign DLCs, which is what it will provide. This wasn’t hidden in fine print. (4th DLC will be finished by end of June.)

    I can’t imagine that anyone who really likes Borderlands 2 would complain about 10 dollars. I’d would pay them 100 USD for 10 new characters, if they would offer it…and I would take each of them through Playthrough 3.

  21. Arkh says:

    My fellow gentlemen,

    I ask your forgiveness about my ignorance, as I did not keep up with the newest shooters shenanigans, but may someone be so kind as to explain me what is a season pass? When did it rise in shooters?

    I’m terribly sorry for this silly question, I’m no owner of any game who has this and I thank you advance for reading this.

    • Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

      Sir,

      The “Season Pass” to which you refer is marketing-speak for “buying all the DLC in a bundle before the DLC has been finished, or, in some cases, announced”. It is essentially the pre-order version of “goatee” on first release, except it is typically more expensive. Except in this case it appears to mean “pre-buying all the DLC except stuff that we have decided to sell separately even though you’ve paid up front for the DLC because we feed our cats on money hats”.

      Yrs. Sncr. &c,

      A. C. “Custard” Smingleigh

    • Vinraith says:

      It’s a DLC pre-order. In the case of Borderlands 2, it was specifically stated to be a pre-order for four campaign DLC’s, of which three have thus far been released. As an added bonus, they apparently decided to include the level cap increase described above.

    • Arkh says:

      I see. Now I understand it.

      Thank you kindly, Lord Custard Smingleigh and Vinraith, for your enlightening answers.

      • bstard says:

        There’s one more thing to say bout season passes before we move on to opinions: they suck.