Generally favorable reviews - based on 83 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 80 out of 83
  2. Negative: 0 out of 83
  1. Borderlands is a excellent title, which is a must have for fans of both FPS and RPG games.
  2. Co-op is a blast, the variety of weaponry lends an addictive quality to the game that's rarely seen, and it maintains a distinct sense of humor and personality. It's a long-lasting experience that manages to stay fresh throughout, and the ability to easily jump into a friend's game at any time only lengthens the appeal of an already stellar title.
  3. The bottom line is that this game is near-perfect and if you love looting then this is the game for you.
  4. 92
    The jump-in, jump-out aspect of multiplayer mode is great for people who like to play both solo and multiplayer. And while FPS/multiplayer extremists may find the questing a bit grindy (as one confided to me after a few days of playing), there really is a je ne sais quoi about this game that totally rules.
  5. It’s not just an RPG, not just a Diablo-style dungeon-crawling loot-whore game; no, Borderlands managed to actually cram in some satisfying FPS combat that doesn’t feel tacked-on. It succeeds as both an RPG AND a shooter and for that alone, it's definitely worth your money and your time.
  6. Even with its technical drawbacks, Borderlands is a shooter for people who want something a little more engaging. It will remind you of every FPS you’ve enjoyed over the last few years, stealing bits of brilliance here and there to make its own enthralling experience.
  7. 90
    The level of enjoyment derived from the game in single player proves that this is a game best played in co-op, which is where Borderlands shines.
  8. Borderlands is one of the year’s most enjoyable games, and I highly recommend it—even to those who may not like shooters or RPGs, because there’s a lot to like from this interesting hybrid.
  9. Despite the pre-release co-op hype, this one’s just as entertaining for solo apocalypse survivors. While I wish more dialog was delivered through animated characters, it’s hard not to be taken in by the rest of what this ambitious shooter has to offer—great visual presentation, addictive leveling and looting, frenzied gunplay, four playable classes. Oh, and Mutant Midget Psychos.
  10. The bottom line here is that as true hybrid games go, Borderlands is as great a success as there has ever been.
  11. One of the great things about Borderlands is that there is always plenty to do. In addition to the story missions there are always a number of other missions available, either from characters that you meet in the game or from job boards in the friendly settlements.
  12. Borderlands is a deep and engaging, RPG-shooter hybrid that needs to be played to be fully appreciated.
  13. The art style is great, the co-op is a blast, and while it's far from perfect, Pandora is a planet well worth exploring Borderlands is a fun – if not a tad simplistic – shooter that will appeal to the gear junkies and RPG heads as much as it will FPS fans.
  14. 90
    And there you have it. Gearbox has conjured up something special, and it's not just another Brothers In Arms sequel.
  15. 90
    This game has single-handedly stolen my soul since it arrived at my doorstep and I find myself needing to level up once a night, much like my wife and her World of Warcraft addiction.
  16. A furiously successful RPG and FPS combination that doesn't fall short on either front. [Issue#52, p.86]
  17. Overall, the game is worth the money for all those gamers who enjoy playing with a small group of friends or love looting. Still the game has various noticeable flaws which can have you caught in some pretty weird and awkward situations.
  18. As singleplayer experiences go it's still phenomenal - especially for a loot ***** (rhymes with boar) like me. I've racked up 25 hours in the game now on just one of my characters - and I'll absolutely play it more.
  19. When a game has such vicious combat, an intriguing skill system, and full co-op capability, a mediocre story can be overlooked. Borderlands is a necessity for any fan of the FPS and RPG genres, or just down-right looting fun.
  20. 90
    Taking elements from shooters and dungeon crawlers, the game blends them flawlessly into a terrific experience that's an easy sell for anyone who loves either.
  21. 90
    The fun I had with the rock-solid gunplay and extensive role-playing elements was considerably amplified by each additional player. Borderlands is an absolute blast that I'll go back to again and again, even if my friends aren't around to help out.
  22. Wildly entertaining and loaded with enough bullet-fueled action to keep action aficionados more than pleased, Borderlands for the Xbox 360 should be on the very top of your Must Have list. Filled with more than enough missions, plenty of skills and loads of guns, this is over-the-top action at its most insane.
  23. Borderlands is leading the way with the new FPS/RPG genre. It strikes a comfortable balance between real-time combat and character advancement.
  24. Borderlands isn't perfect. Far from it. But its addictive gameplay and unique features makes it different from the pack.
  25. 88
    It's something action role-playing game fans looking for an experience more up-close and brutal than genre entries of the third-person variety should have a blast with, and one of the more memorable products of 2009.
  26. 88
    With the right blend of attitude, solid gameplay and an unapologetic focus on making a really entertaining co-op experience, Borderlands isn't just an alternative to Valve's co-op zombie-blaster this holiday season, it's really the alternative.
  27. Borderlands provides players with an open world to explore, thousands of guns to collect, and plenty of compelling moments, making it worth a look for fans of shooters and RPGs alike.
  28. Borderlands manages to combine two normally distinct genres into an impressive and potent blend of FPS and RPG entertainment that is best played with friends. Grab your buddies and get hunting.
  29. Pure and addictive RPG-flavored FPS action, extremely engaging co-op and altogether a vast and mysterious world waiting to be explored.
  30. 87
    In short, Borderlands is a top-quality shooter and grind-fest.
  31. In most ways, Borderlands is a first-person shooter that's really designed towards RPG fans, specifically the Diablo-styled hack & slash games. Regular shooter fans will find a lot to enjoy here however, thanks to the solid shooter mechanics.
  32. Doesn’t have an instant appeal to it, but after a while Borderlands can get seriously addictive. It’s really quite impressive when you realize, that you've put 40 hours into a single player fps game! Still, the game could offer a bit more depth with the character builds. One active skill per character is really not enough. The laggy co-op in Xbox Live is a sore disappointment. [Nov 2010]
  33. Borderlands is a pretty brilliant example of the power of genre mixtures. RPG, Shooter, Sandbox… all of them are quite simple but assembling them creates a brilliant and addictive videogame.
  34. Borderlands, is a great game, a strange but well devised mix of kill and loot mechanics from Diablo and a frantic fps. Long and challenging in single player, the game gives its best in the online coop mode.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 629 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 12 out of 161
  1. Jul 11, 2011
    A mediocre game. At first the experience is a bit new and seems fun, but the game quickly drags on. The original campaign is very short and anti-climatic. The online co-op is a joke, riddled with shameless cheaters and bugs that still exist from release. Instead of fixing the bugs, Gearbox decided it was a better idea to release 4 DLC add-ons. I only paid 10 bucks for the game and all the DLC and I still feel cheated. Full Review »
  2. Aug 28, 2012
    Easily one of the most over-rated games I have ever played. A Fallout clone meets uninspired WoW RPG interface that lacks serious polish. I didn't mind the cell shading but question it's effectiveness in a post apocalyptic-like setting. Everything is just brown and bland including the enemies.

    The clunky and erratic aiming controls on the console make over-powered general mobs incredibly frustrating. Enemy AI seems to exploit these poor controls by straffing and sprinting all over while they posses near perfect aim. Axe wielding mobs are insanely ridiculous as they can heave axes from miles away with dead on accuracy (even over huge boulders or cover) all while you struggle with the aim of a sniper rifle.

    As an FPS this game is pretty weak compared to other offerings out there. Even with sensitivity turned way up the aim is always poor. Weapons have erratic aim. Some shots will land crits while other perfectly aimed shots miss or register next to no damage. Explosives can go off at enemy or even your own feet dealing little to no damage then a grenade 10 feet away can kill you or a mob. Weapons are also pretty bland with just different stats.

    As an RPG this game is a joke. Leveling your toon takes forever and the WoW inspired talent tree offers no real character enhancement. Just small health or shield regen boosts. Too many skills are aimed at improving your limited specialty weapon, the turret which has a very small time limit to use and a long cooldown. Also the games emphasis is huge on Co-op which explains why so many pro critics loved this title. As a single player game this is a frustrating experience and major time suck. Leveling your character is almost worthless as it's all about getting more powerful guns. Healing is a drag. Your inventory is extremely limited. Only a dozen slots at first and increases slowly. Health packs are small heal over time boosts so you really have to go with shields that offer health regen. These rates are terribly slow. By early lvl 20's you will have 450-500 health and if you get banged up in a fight it can take 10 minutes to regen all health. If you opt to avoid health regen shields you have to carry a lot of health packs which is hard to do and prohibits you from picking up weapons to sell. because ammo is limited you also have to carry a lot of different styles of guns to get by. Paying for health is also expensive. Several hundred just for small amounts of heal. If you die forget it. The game punishes you big time by charging you thousands of dollars to respawn. In the early 20's I had to shell out over 8,000 for one death. Thats more money than you may gain in one dungeon crawl which essentially sets you way back. Beyond healing and respawning though money is pretty useless. The guns at the vending machines never are better than what you find. Still though the game has you open thousands of small boxes with tiny amounts of cash. 10 bucks here, 20 bucks there. Adding to the frustration is that enemy respawn rates are way too fast. Almost as soon as you leave an area all the enemies return. This is a pain in dungeons because you may want to return to the vending machines to sell off loot to free up your pack or recharge health. You often have to fight your way back there wasting more ammo and then when you return you have to fight back to your last point often rendering the trip worthless. Insult to injury is that ammo you uncover in areas but don't pick up because you are full will disappear after a short time even though the enemies return.

    Basically I never felt like I was progressing in this game. Most RPGs allow players to reach a point where they develop their stats enough to manipulate the game engine and make playthrough either easier or more enjoyable. Borderlands always has the player feeling like he is horribly underpowered and no amount of leveling really matters. It's all luck based on which weapons you find. The sotry is kind of vague and most quests are just random fetch quests or bounty missions. I never really had a full understanding of what I was doing. I gather the single player story is short but after 8 hours of just monotonous grinding I won't be finishing this title. There are way better games to play and the release of Borderlands 2 will not be seeing me as a customer. Even as a budget title I would give this a miss.
    Full Review »
  3. May 31, 2012
    I've had this game for a long time now but never got around to review it so now I'm doing my review in 2012.Borderlands in simple words to describe it is AWESOME!!!the combat,rpg elements,graphics and multiplayer are Fantastic.I can not wait till borderlands 2 comes out in a few short months.either way if you like rpgs and shooters then you're gonna love this the dlc is amazing.get this game . Full Review »