Episode 3 of Tales From the Borderlands jumps around quite a bit. You still have the same cast of characters, Handsome Jack is still inside Rhys’ head, and the Loader Bot is still following you around. However, a bunch of new (and recurring) characters from the Borderlands universe show up, and you still have the flashback style of play, where the present time is actually where Rhys and Fiona are being led about the wastelands by a masked mercenary. The actually gameplay takes place during the flashbacks where Rhys and Fiona are telling their versions of how things got to this point. Confused? You won’t be if you actually play the game.
The biggest additions to the story are two of the vault hunters from the original Borderlands game (Mordecai and Brick) show up, and they’re actually trying to take you out. They’re working for a new villain named Vallory, whom appears to be one bad ass chick. Reminds me of Cruella DeVil. When we left off in the last episode, the gang were holed up inside of an Atlas facility, attempting to get a vault key, that turns out to be a sentient being called Gortys. I had just given Jack permission to use my Hyperion implants to his benefit, and he in turn hacked all of the Atlas sentry bots and we turned said bots against Hugo and August, who had our group trapped with a bunch of mercenary soldiers.
The bots made short work of the enemy, and as the group escaped from the facility, it was apparent that Jack was being a little homicidal, in that the bots actually shot at our friends as well. However, just outside of the Atlas fort, we ran into Vallory, who had us in a compromising position. Vasquez and August make their way outside, though Vasquez is now missing an arm. Vallory asks who is to blame for the debacle, and Fiona is given the choice to place blame. I picked Vasquez because he seems to be a bigger douche than August, and Vallory kills him off. Oh yeah, by the way, spoilers. My bad. The majority of players (59%) made the same decision.
During the same scene, Fiona had been laid out and Vallory offers to help her up. I declined, knowing that Vallory is the villain of this tale, and fuck it, I like to live on the edge. Apparently most people didn’t feel the same, as only 32% of players made the same choice. In an attempt to avoid further spoilers, we’ll just say that the group manages to get away from Vallory (for now) and also gets separated for a time. Gortys leads them to another Atlas facility in search of other parts needed to gain access to the vault. Athena, another vault hunter that was present in previous episodes (though we never had a chance to interact) shows up and helps Fiona. There comes a point where you interact with a man named Cassius, who is actually the last living Atlas employee, and Athena wants to kill him (I’ll leave the reasoning for you to find out). I allowed this to happen. Only 43% of players made the same choice.
On to Rhys’ choices. After the debacle at the beginning of the episode, Rhys has words with Jack about shooting at his friends. Jack makes up some nonsense, and it would probably be wise to not trust him ever again, but I love the character so I gave him another chance. It appears most players are also partial to Jack (62%).
At the Atlas facility Gortys leads us to, there is a point where Rhys and Sasha go separately to turn off some security doodads. There’s a point where they find some weird indigenous life, and some flowers that look kinda pretty. Rhys picks a flower and is prompted to choose between giving it to Sasha or keeping it. Of course I give the pretty flower to a pretty good as did most players (78%) but that ends up backfiring, as the flower spits out some sort of pollen that attracts these weird flying creatures. That leads to more problems but I’ll leave it to you to see what’s what.
During the same scene, there comes a part where you have to jump a gap in a broken bridge, and Sasha goes first. She makes it just fine, but after Rhys makes the leap, the bridge continues to break, and they both fall over the edge. Rhys grabs hold of the pieces that are hanging and Sasha grabs his legs. She says she’s going to let go because their combined weight is too much and they’ll both fall anyway. I refused to let her do so, but then she does anyway. Turns out we’re only a few feet off of the ground at this point, but to be fair, Rhys is afraid of heights and Sasha had already told him “don’t look down.” It was pretty humorous.
At the end of this episode, I’m feeling like the story is coming together quite nicely, but these “choices” don’t seem like much. It’s not the typical TellTale really controversial choices. It’s just, kinda goofy and fun to play through, but nothing feels like it has consequence. I’ve already paid for the whole season in advance though, so it’s not as if I’m going to avoid playing through the rest. It’s just a little different than say the Game of Thrones season that is going on right now (though GoT is magnitudes more gritty and violent than BL is as far as IPs go anyway). Anyway, see you again in 6-8 weeks when the next episode comes out!
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