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Borderlands 2 is right up there with the biggest games of the year. The first outing was brilliant: a dark horse, co-op spectacular, filled with loot and obscene amounts of weaponry. But the sequel's going to be even better...
1. ARMY OF FOUR
In Borderlands 2, much like its predecessor, co-op is king. While waiting for our fellow player to finish picking his loadout we venture out into the Wildlife Exploitation Reserve on our tod. Though it's a less lonesome experience in single-player (see number 6) our buddy's eventual bombastic arrival midway through a Stalker attack gave us cause to fist pump the air in delight.
2. CHARACTER CLASS
Of the four main characters to choose from, we're given the choice of Maya or Salvador. Maya is similar to Lilith from the first game though packs an enemy freezing kinetic special attack known as Phaselock. Salvador, meanwhile, is a Gunzerker - a gruff duel-weapon wielding manic. The other two characters, Zero and Axton, make up the numbers with blade waving and turret placing skills respectively.
Loot is back! Seeing a gleaming item fall from a downed foe made us warm and fuzzy inside. A great new feature means that you'll no longer have to stop mid-battle to look down to pick up dropped ammo. Now clips and so on will magically soar towards you.
4. CHECK OUT MY GUNS
It's not just the fact that there are so many different combinations of guns in Borderlands 2, it's that each and every one of them has a unique feel and look. As the dust settles after each battle we find ourselves stopping to check out each other's load-outs. The manufacturers whose names and styles emblazon the weapons are visually recognisable, whether through a sci-fi-esque stock or a spinning mini-gun barrel. We quickly came to love our high damage Jakobs Double-Barrelled Coach Gun, partly for its hefty punch but also for its oldie worldie western styling. Other makers include Valdof, purveyors of speedy fire rate bullet spewers and Torgue, for those explosive moments when subtlety occupies the lowest bullet point on your list of priorities.
5. CANNON FODDER
We stand atop a bridge looking down upon a group of Skags, returning beasties which attack rapidly and can spit volatile liquid/flames/acids from their gobs. Earlier we faced off with mecha robots and hapless engineers rushing to repair them. Moments before that we battled Stalkers, which can temporarily turn invisible. So many enemies... Just as well there are so many guns, eh?