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Video Game: Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel!

Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel! is the third Space Western/FPS/Action RPG game in the Borderlands series, set to be released on Xbox 360, Playstation 3, PC, Mac, and Linux. Set as a midquel between Borderlands and Borderlands 2, the game opens with future villain Handsome Jack desperate to escape and reclaim the Hyperion moon-base he was banished to. Hiring a Ragtag Bunch of Misfits to act as his henchmen, the four player characters this time are two villains and two NPCs who appeared in previous instalments:

Seeing locations set in space, players are forced to act on Handsome Jack's behalf. This starts with good intentions, as Handsome Jack claims to be saving the moon, and will descend into the ethically questionable; surprisingly, it doesn't work out well. It is mainly being developed by 2K Australia this time around, with series creator Gearbox Software providing collaboration and support. Borderlands 2 lead writer Anthony Burch worked with 2K Australia's writers for the game.

DLC is confirmed for this game, with the Season Pass stated to cover all DLC released.

Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel! contains examples of:

  • 10-Minute Retirement: Roland and Lilith are met early on; when Jack and the gang try to recruit their assistance, they state that they're officially retired after the whole giant tentacled blob debacle. They get involved anyway pretty quickly.
  • 20% More Awesome: At Janey's Moon Zoomie digistruct stations, she's sometimes say "Moon Zoomies. 20% less.. explody.... than other.. uhmm... vehicles. Whatever that means."
  • Action Prologue: The game opens with the Vault Hunters crash-landing on Helios in the middle of an attack by Dahl's Lost Legion.
    Mordecai: Our story just started with us getting off a bus. This is all explodey and stuff.
  • The Alcoholic: Moxxi's bartending Claptrap B4R-BOT is more interested in drinking alcohol than serving it.
    • Peepot, who gives you a sidequest, is so drunk that he can't remember if his best friend is a man or a woman (his friend's name is The Jolly Swagman), and when you return to him after finishing the quest, he can't remember meeting you the first time. Also, his reaction to finding out that Swagman is dead is one of disappointment, because Swagman still owed him a drink.
  • It's All About Me: After strangling President Tassiter and taking over the company, Handsome Jack replaces all the posters of the Hyperion founders on Helios with those of himself.
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking:
    • When you first reach Concordia, the CUSTM-TP will issue you a ticket for "Morally Verbal Abuse" (AKA swearing and insulting others). Looking at the ticket slapped on the broken down weapon vendor, other criminal offenses include "Temporal Causalities" and "Conservation of Energy (Second Law)".
    • A wanted poster for Pickle cites him for "Theft, Fraud, Larceny, Piracy, and Noise Violations".
    • The Dahl New-U station may sometimes mention how dying is a crime punishable by death.
  • Asteroids Monster: Kraggons split up into mini versions when you kill them. If a midget happens to be riding one, this will somehow result in two Kraggon-riding midgets.
  • Bad Boss: Harold Tassiter treats Jack with nothing but utter contempt and takes practically any opportunity to yell at him. As the game goes on, Jack goes from cowering before him to simply ignoring him and eventually blowing up at him, inevitably ending with him just outright murdering Tassiter.
    • And it's not just Jack he's a bad boss to, either. There's a random PA message that can play when on Helios that goes "Harold Tassiter would like to remind you that the Helios project is a waste of time and that he hates you."
  • Badass Grandma: Hyperion co-founder Alma Harren, who was a mercenary sniper with hundreds of kills to her name well into her golden years.
  • Batman Can Breathe in Space: Averted. With the exception of Claptrap, players have to watch their oxygen supply in areas that are devoid of atmosphere. It ticks down at about 1 point per second, and can only be recharged by using Ozkits or running into oxygenated bubbles and areas of the map. Likewise, fire weapons (and possibly some other elementals) only work in oxygenated environments. The bandits need O2 as well, and will go running towards these areas if a fight draws out too long or if you headshot their helmets off.
  • Black and Grey Morality: The Lost Legion are your enemies in this game, but considering that Jack, Wilhelm, and Nisha become bad guys in Borderlands 2, who's to say you're not the bad guys yourself?
  • Body Double: The first DLC character of the game is "The Doppelganger", Handsome Jack's bodyguard who was surgically altered to look just like him.
  • Booze-Based Buff: Moxxi's bar offers Moxxtails that give you a 30 minute buff to a specific stat. Only one buff can be active at any time.
  • Bread, Eggs, Breaded Eggs: One of Deadlift's men wonders what's inside a package you have him sign for.
    Be you a small kitten? Or a knife? Or a small kitten holding a knife?
  • But He Sounds Handsome: Inverted. B4R-BOT pretend to be a different robot who coincidentally looks exactly like B4R-BOT so that he can slack off work and drink all day. Part of his airtight deception involves him complaining about how that lazy, good-for-nothing B4R-BOT is nowhere to be found.
  • Call Back: Moxxi mentions having to get Scooter to bury you alive in a shallow grave, which is exactly what he did in General Knoxx to Lucky, which is also mentioned in 2 during the Zaford/Hodunk feud.
  • Call Forward: Janey briefly flirts with Nisha before apologizing and saying Nisha isn't really her type. Nisha responds "That's okay. I like 'em handsome, anyway." Nisha, of course, is Handsome Jack's girlfriend in Borderlands 2.
    • After a particularly annoying moment with one, Jack swears that getting rid of the Claptraps will be his first action as president of Hyperion. Said and done.
  • Combat Sadomasochist: Nisha, and it's reflected in her Law and Order tree, which is focused on getting buffs from giving and receiving damage.
  • Comically Missing the Point: A teaser has Handsome Jack reciting his own version of Ozymandias with himself in the place of the title character. He's brought up short in confusion by the line "Nothing beside remains," and changes the rest of the poem to a hymn praising his own awesomeness (and handsomeness) because if he'd taken the time to think about the poem's actual theme he wouldn't be Jack.
  • Continuity Nod: In Borderlands 2, damn near everyone made a Running Gag by saying "Did Moxxi say anything about me?" In Concordia, a conversion between Janey and Crazy Earl has her puzzled. "And... she didn't mention me at all?"
  • Corporate Warfare: Central to the plot: Hyperion vs. Dahl's Lost Legion. Also mentioned in backstory as common amongst the conglomerates.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: Of course Jack turns into one during the course of the game, but special mention goes to Maxim Turner. Holy shit, Maxim Turner. Co-founder of Hyperion, he was a war profiteer of the highest order, and even incited the Last Corporate War, a war in which the conglomerates destroyed the central government, leading to the conglomerates' ascension into actual political powers.
  • Create Your Own Villain: Lilith, Roland and Moxxi inadvertently create Handsome Jack through their betrayal and eventual scarring of him. They betrayed him because they had suspicions he was deluding himself with all his talk of "heroism", and that he was actually a psychopath and a sadist. They were right. But he proved smart enough to survive the betrayal...
  • Cry for the Devil: Invoked as the premise — prior to his being deranged dictator, the game provides a mildly sympathetic Perspective Flip to explore why Jack ends up as the Big Bad. And he does wind up bad, but after a series of betrayals and traumatic experiences. It's even lampshaded by Brick and Tina, who hate how the story starts off by making Jack out to be in any way a decent person.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: The game reveals why Jack scrapped the Claptrap line of bots: they annoyed him. You would have thought there was a bigger, more story-driven reason for it, but no. He just doesn't like them.
  • Ditto Fighter: Fitting considering that he's the series' mascot, Claptrap's special ability allows him to randomly take on a skill, some of which are those used by the Vault Hunters of the previous game.
  • Downer Ending: On two levels. Obviously, Jack turns into the Big Bad of Borderlands 2, taking over Hyperion and becoming a vengeful, iron-fisted lunatic in the pursuit of fame, power, and his delusion of "heroism"; the Hyperion Vault Hunters all survive to meet their various grim ends in the next game. In terms of the plot, they achieve what they set out to do - reclaim Helios and find the Vault on Elpis - but neither of those things turn out as advertised and many things (and lives) are lost. Enough to make you wonder whether it was worth the effort.
  • Drill Sergeant Nasty: The Dahl Reconstruction System talks like this, in contrast to the female voice that the Hyperion New-U system uses. It isn't really all that nasty though. Less passive-aggressively insulting than the Hyperion ones, at least. Spits out a few hilarious platitudes such as, "Dyin's good fer ya! Puts hair on yer chest".
  • Earth-Shattering Kaboom: The army that Jack and his thugs are fighting against are threatening to destroy Elpis (and maybe Pandora after that) by way of Kill Sat through a Wave Motion Gun.
  • Embarrassing First Name: Colonel Zarpadon reveals her first name is actually Tungsteena, to Jack's delight.
  • Empathy Doll Shot: Inside Janey's old camp is a teddy bear torn in half.
  • Energy Weapon: Lasers are a new class of weapon in the game, and they're not just E-Tech. Jack's Twitter account gives a Hand Wave as to why they aren't in Borderlands 2, despite that game taking place later: the cryo weapons rely on liquid methane, which tends to evaporate outside of Elpis, and the laser guns are too flimsy and crumple in Pandora's atmospheric pressure.
    • A loading screen tip also explains that the reason laser weapons were never brought to Pandora had to do with an accident involving Marcus, a laser weapon, and a straw.
    • All throughout the game, you find Mr. Torgue expressing his hatred of lasers and his want of seeking the destruction of all laser weapons.
  • Excited Show Title!: Rather than just "Pre-Sequel", the game's title is given an exclamation mark.
  • Expy: Lawrence De Quidt, co-founder of Hyperion, is an expy of Steve Jobs, right down to his death occurring while he was still developing products for his company.
    • Moonstone serves as a replacement for the Eridium bars in Borderlands 2, being a pretty rock that serve essentially the same purpose (buying upgrades from Crazy Earl and other "premium" items, and much like in Assault on Dragon Keep, unlocking special chests).
  • Face-Heel Turn: Although Jack was never exactly a Face (he had already built a giant death ray before the beginning of the game, and at this point Angel's already stuck in her pod, for starters), the Pre-Sequel shows he had redeeming qualities, was rational, and wasn't particularly more villainous than most supporting characters in the setting. The game shows his slide into full-on lunatic supervillainy.
  • Flawed Prototype: Claptraps are an entire line of them, as contradictory as that sounds. Lawrence De Quidt, one of Hyperion's founders, created the Claptraps and designed their A.I. subroutines, but he died before he was able to perfect their A.I., and so Claptraps are left with their annoying, bizarre, counter-productive and unpredictable early programming.
  • Foregone Conclusion: As a prequel, it is already known what happens to the four player characters and to their boss. Claptrap becomes the Last of His Kind after Jack destroys his product line. Jack goes on to become the president of Hyperion with Wilhelm and Nisha continuing to be his chief minions, and Nisha and Jack start a relationship while Athena is guaranteed to survive past Borderlands 2 so that she can tell her story to Lilith. Most importantly, Jack, Wilhelm, and Nisha are all dead by the end of Borderlands 2's campaign. Still, there's a lot of questions...
  • Framing Device: The game is set up as Athena recounting the events of Elpis to Lilith and the Crimson Raiders after the events of Borderlands 2. The New Game+ is her retelling the story to Tiny Tina, who tells her to make it "more difficult" while also adding in her own commentary on the story.
  • Frickin' Laser Beams: Lasers are a new class of weapon introduced to the series.
  • Gameplay and Story Integration: The game gives explanations for why ice and laser weapons weren't in Borderlands 2. Pandora's warmer climate evaporates the frozen methane in ice weapons, while laser weapons are so fragile that they simply break under Pandora's atmospheric pressure.
    • During a sidequest for him, Pickle says doing it will mean he'll "never nick anything out of your pockets again." It seems like a throwaway line, but you actually lose a good bit of cash every time you talk to him. And, much as a good thief would do, you never get any in-game indication he's robbed you.
  • Good Bad Bugs: Invoked with Claptrap's VaultHunter.exe skill, which is considered malware in-universe. Due to it being buggy software, its abilities are unpredictable, whether this be increased fire rate/reload speed, tossing out grenades uncontrollably or even giving everyone floatation devices so that they bounce uncontrollably around the field. It's even crazier with "Fragmented Fragtrap" skills, where you randomly become really good with certain weapons but bad at others, necessitating switching from your favorite weapon constantly.
  • Gravity Screw: Due to the game taking place on the moon, gravity is lower than usual, allowing for higher jumps and greater air time.
  • Gray and Gray Morality: With a couple spots of black with bandits and Nisha. As pointed out by MISTER TORGUE, it's hard to decide who the "bad guy" really is here. At first, anyway... Is Zarpedon a villain for trying to destroy the moon and Pandora, killing thousands of people but saving the universe? Her soldiers all believe in her enough to die for her and she's never anything but sombre, regretful, dignified and determined. Is Jack the hero, a sociopath-in-waiting who's nonetheless trying to save both those planets while resorting to incredibly questionable acts such as Mind Raping an AI, venting helpless scientists into space and killing people surrendering to him? He'd definitely say so, but that's what he's always said. And what does that make you for helping him?
  • Ground Pound: One of the abilities introduced. Done by crouching in midair, explained in-universe as a function of your jetpack/oxygen tank.
  • Healing Shiv: One of Athena's upgrades turns her Aspis into this — throwing it at an ally who is in Fight For Your Life mode will revive them.
  • How Dare You Die on Me!: After the Eye of Helios is destroyed, Jack will give a sidequest to take the remaining pieces of the Destroyer's eye and try to put them back together, ignoring the Vault Hunters' insistence that it cannot be saved until its stitched-together remains explode during a test fire.
  • Interface Screw: You can see your character's breath fogging up the outer corners of the screen when you're in a vacuum.
  • Interquel: As the title indicates, the game takes place between the first and second games.
  • Item Crafting: The Grinder lets you make a brand new gun by feeding it three different guns. You can spend Moonstone to imbue a Luneshine effect on the finished product, giving it a unique property.
  • It's Personal: After being betrayed by Moxxi, Lilith and Roland, Jack and his goons more or less swear bloody vengeance on them. Even Athena makes it clear that while her job's the only reason she's still around, she plans on getting even with them. The only exception is Claptrap, who is instead distraught that he was betrayed by people he considered friends.
  • Jet Pack: The players come equipped with oxygen-powered jet packs that let them perform double jumps as well as a ground pound when in air.
  • Jumping Off the Slippery Slope: The whole game acts as one for Jack, going from a somewhat sociopathic but well-meaning Hero-in-training to a horrific, hypocritical monster.
    • The ending also has Lilith, still broken over Roland's death, demanding the execution of Athena much to her teammates protests.
  • Kick the Dog: Jack has you execute a surrendering Lost Legion Marine after the destruction of the Eye of Helios, showing that he's well past the Moral Event Horizon.
  • Kick Them While Theyre Down: Lampshaded as a skill for Claptrap. Called "Kick Him While He's Down", Claptrap will cause all enemies to move toward him and then start hitting him with melee attacks when he's in Fight For Your Life. Another skill on the same tree is called "Kick Him While He's Up", where he gains a damage buff immediately after recovering.
  • Kill It with Ice: A new element introduced to the series is Cryo, which can freeze enemies solid.
  • Lampshaded Double Entendre: During one of the story missions in Concordia.
    Jack: Get back to Moxxi, she has secret exits everywhere! ...Heh, heh, classic.
  • Land Down Under: In contrast to Pandora being filled with space rednecks, Elpis is essentially space Australia, full of space bogans. (Fitting, then, that this game was put together by an Australian developer). They call 02 kits "OZ" kits (technically due to a poor choice of advertising fonts), minor questgiver Peepot is one long riff on the song "Waltzing Matilda", most of the NPCs have Australian accents (varied and authentic), there's a "First Fleet" (which actually wasn't the first fleet to arrive, just like the First Fleet in reality), frequent mentions of beer, "Red Belly", "Captain Chef", and so many other similar jokes and references to the degree that you may have to actually be Australian or very familiar with Australian pop culture to understand them all. And on top of everything else, Elpis is referred to as the Land Up Over.
  • The Last of These Is Not Like the Others: Keeping in tradition with the first two games, there are the Vault Hunter introductions.
    • Athena as The Gladiator
    • Wilhem as The Enforcer
    • Nisha as The Lawbringer
    • Claptrap as A Mistake
  • Let The Bully Win: The quest "Pop Racing" shows what happens when you don't. Your opponent whines to his dad, who shows up trying to kill you. You then proceed to kill your opponent's father in front of him as punishment. And he respawns so you can do it multiple times.
  • Literally Shattered Lives: The result of killing a frozen enemy. There's even a badass challenge for killing enemies by the fall damage they receive when frozen. Pretty satisfying against flying enemies.
  • Macross Missile Massacre: The Missile Pod on the Moon Zoomies fires off a rapid swarm of homing missiles. They're very fast, and very powerful. You just have to aim in the general direction of an enemy to target it.
  • Mainlining the Monster: The Eye of Helios. It's actually the Eye of the Destroyer, powered by Eridium slag created to make the station into a KillSat.
  • Meaningful Name: The moon Elpis is named after the Greek goddess of hope. The legend of Pandora's box says that after all the evils of the world were released following its opening, the only thing remaining in the box was hope.
  • Meaningful Rename: The Lost Legion, from their previous assignment, because they had been abandoned by Dahl command during the Crackening, and for all intents and purposes are "lost" and dead.
  • Mook Medic: The Lost Legion has field medics among their soldiers, able to heal others in their vicinity.
  • N.G.O. Superpower: While it was heavily implied in the games before it, The Pre-Sequel! confirms that the closest thing to "lawful government" on planets and satellites like Pandora and Elpis is whichever corporation got there first. They control enough manpower, technology and resources to dictate the law wherever there's no one to stop them. Hyperion, Dahl and Atlas all held absolute power over Pandora at one point or another. Concordia, closest thing to a major settlement on Elpis, was run by a former Hyperion employee who was still loyal (until it's revealed that he had betrayed them to Dahl), most of Elpis was formerly under control of Dahl, and Sanctuary used to be a mobile mining platform also owned and operated by Dahl. When they withdraw and Atlas collapsed, the "Hyperion army" rolled in to take over. You even hear about the Corporate War, an armed conflict between Hyperion and other conglomerates.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero:
    • Your actions throughout the game lead to Jack becoming Handsome Jack and rising to power.
    • Zarpedon's last words and the Sequel Hook ending seem to indicate that whatever the Vault Hunter's did at the end of Borderlands 2 by triggering the Vault Map, it's going to cause some sort of galactic event so terrible that the destruction of Pandora and Elpis would have been a small price to pay averting it.
    • Sir Hammerlock is actually responsible for the existence of Threshers after he got some samples and they got out. He even goes so far as to cheerfully say that they shouldn't be a problem. One is almost certainly Terramorphus the Invincible.
    • Moxxi, Lilith, and Roland attempt to kill Jack because they fear he's going to become an evil megalomaniac. His anger at their betrayal is the main reason he targets them when he attains Hyperion's power.
  • No Campaign for the Wicked: Averted. This focuses on the Big Bad of the sequel and some of his minions.
  • Nominal Hero: Jack takes it upon himself to "save" the citizens who live on the moon from an "evil army".
    • He's even willing to pull a likely Heroic Sacrifice to do so. At least, early on.
  • Not as You Know Them: Jack starts off the game much less the asshole we know him as in Borderlands 2, and more like an overexcited adrenaline junkie with cool Arm Cannons.
    • Moxxie has a side to her that we never saw before here: a closet Hodunk Wrench Wench, like her daughter Ellie.
  • Not So Different: Athena hits Lilith with this while describing the motivations of Jack's crew - they were just a bunch of mercs with a mission to fulfil. Lilith threatens to kill her if she ever does it again. Also, like Jack, Lilith ultimately chooses Revenge Before Reason.
  • Oddly Named Sequel 2: Electric Boogaloo: The game could have been called "Borderlands 1.5", but to keep with the humor of the series, they decided on "The Pre-Sequel" instead. In the teaser trailer, Jack claims to be the one who came up with the word Pre-Sequel.
  • Off Model: The cowering FIX Loaders in the tutorial missions have some...pretty jarring animation issues.
  • The Plague: The unlucky Hyperion workers in Helios Central Maintenance are suffering from a bad case of Mind Worms. It's as awful, disgusting, and nightmarish as you would expect it to be.
  • Power Fist: One of Wilhelm's skills gives him one.
  • Promoted to Playable: Wilhelm, Nisha, Claptrap and Athena went from bosses and quest givers to playable characters. In the case of Nisha, she's even given an actual name whereas in Borderlands 2 she was known only as the Sheriff of Lynchwood.
  • Redundant Department of Redundancy: The Dahl Reconstruction station mentions that dying is a crime punishable by death.
  • Revenge Before Reason: Jack spares the Meriff's life like it comes naturally to him, and gets shot in the back for his trouble. From that point on he just straight up kills all his enemies, and even people he suspects might be an enemy. Likewise, Lilith chooses to execute Athena despite her lack of culpability in Handsome Jack's later actions over Brick and Mordecai's protests.
  • Say My Name: At one point Jack screams out Zarpedon's name Wrath of Khan-style (complete with extra-long emphasis on the end vowel), then immediately breaks out into laughter at how silly the name is.
  • Self Fulfilling Prophecy:
    • Colonel Zarpedon tries to blow up Elpis and Pandora to prevent the events of Borderlands 2, specifically the activation of the Vault network. Instead, her actions set Jack on the path to becoming Handsome Jack and doing just that.
    • Moxxi blows up the Eye in order to kill Jack because she believes he's inevitably going to turn into a sociopathic lunatic megalomaniac. Jack survives and his rage at the betrayal makes him turn into a full blown sociopathic lunatic megalomaniac.
  • Serial Escalation:
    • At the character select screen in Borderlands 2, Claptrap would sometimes say "I gotta pee." At the character select screen, the CL4P-TP wandering around will sometimes say "I gotta pee." He then rushes into the portable outhouse and closes the door, where it promptly launches him into space.
    • The first game's intro sequence was essentially the playable characters riding a bus. The second game stepped things up with an epic fight aboard a moving train. This one begins with an army of bandits leaping onto a rocket ship during takeoff, getting into an epic fight with the playable characters inside, and crashing the thing into the Hyperion satellite. Brick and Mordecai lampshade this, with Brick commenting that he prefers Athena's version.
  • Shout-Out: In fine Borderlands tradition, it has its own page.
  • Silicon-Based Life: Kraggons are beasts that are made out of the lava or frozen methane that they live in.
  • Sound Effects Bleep: Janey's 3rd children's story echo is her way of taking her anger out on the kraggons, calling one a "little b***h piece of s**t". She says that the recording must be corrupted or something.
    • A second attempt at the "Recuitment Drive" mission will have the quest giver, a normally sweet girl, scream "oh, f***ing f**k!" when she loses track of time again.
    • Due to the shareholders installing a censor in his voice box, Mister Torgue talks in this manner.
    • The Boganella shotgun has its sailor-grade swearing bleeped out, as well.
    • Hell, every time the F-word is spoken in this game it's bleeped out. Presumably every human, robot and talking gun in the galaxy has voice-censors. Or possibly Narrator!Athena is simply leaving out the actual profanity.
  • Space Is Noisy: It seems that being in space does not negate sounds from either your gun or your enemies. One of the first explosive weapons you can obtain even has a tagline "In space, you won't need to hear them scream." Justified in the moon's surface, as Elpis DOES have an atmosphere, it's just not a breathable one. But having sound be heard while spacewalking in Helios, well, MS T3k Mantra that.
  • Space Marine: Lost Legion enemies look the part. The heavier class Lost Legion are even called Lost Legion Marines.
  • Spoof Aesop: During a mission where you have to locate and destroy the "Meriff"'s audio diaries, Jack comes out with this gem of wisdom;
    ...It's not OK to be an asshole. Unless you're funny with it. Then it's kinda totally OK.
  • Stalker Shrine: The 'Meriff has a figurine of Moxxie along with some partially melted candles hidden away inside a safe in his office library.
  • Start of Darkness: The game tells the story of how Handsome Jack went from a well-intentioned code monkey to the megalomaniacal Big Bad of the second game. The same goes for Wilhelm to some extent, showing how he went from a galactically-renown mercenary to the cybernetic monstrosity that defeated the original Vault Hunters. In the case of Nisha, who was already pretty nasty before she met Jack, the game has ECHO Logs detailing her horrific childhood that made her into the monster that she is.
    • Unlike most classic version of this trope however, Handsome Jack isn't at all "good" at the start of the game - by this point in his history he's at the very least engineered the events of the first game, and also has been experimenting on his daughter for years for the express purpose of unlocking the Vaults. However, he is rational, sane and very friendly- a far cry from who he becomes.
    • Specifically, being shot harmlessly in the back by the Meriff after Jack had decided to spare his life seems to mark the point at which Jack begins his steepest descent into villainy. He shoots the Meriff four times in an outburst of fury, even though he himself was physically unhurt, then says it felt...oddly invigorating. He makes several references to that moment later on to justify his increasingly extreme actions. Him airlocking all the Hyperion scientists because one of them might have been a spy for Zarpedon marks the point at which he's definitely gone over the edge, prompting Roland and Lilith to turn against him.
  • Stupid Statement Dance Mix: Jack will give a side quest to launch a Rocket with the Meriff's statue's head attached to a Dubstep remix of his last confession.
  • Suddenly Voiced: Compared to the previous player characters of the series, who only spoke during combat and were finally given interactive dialogue with Tiny Tina's DLC, the playable characters of this game will openly comment on the plot at hand and even have unique interactions with certain NPCs and each other.
    Claptrap: I'm programmed to be foolishly optimistic in situations such as these.
    Athena: Why am I not surprised?
  • Sword In The Stone: Excalibastard, which is a legendary gun stuck on a stone that requires the player to have 2500 Badass Ranks to successfully pull out.
  • Self-Deprecation: Several trailers have mentioned the lack of "internet memes" in the game as a selling point. Said point was made sarcastically, as there are just as many if not more memes in Pre-Sequel! than the previous game. Going further than that, one of the NPC Claptraps talks about how the series should be called "Bordermemes" or "Memelands 2" or even "Memelands: The Pre-Memequel", itself taken from a twitter post that Anthony Burch made about accusations of the meme references in the second game.
  • Take That: Tassiter's brain-dead nephew's favorite show is the The Big Explosion Hypothesis.
  • That Man Is Dead: After Jack uses the artifact in the Vault, has it punched into his face by Lilith, and makes plans to awaken the Warrior, Narrator!Athena pinpoints this as the moment when the heroic man who had hired her to find a Vault had died.
  • The Stinger: The post credits scene shows Jack strangling Tassiter to death, and informing the secretary he's in charge now before re-introducing him, mask and all, as Handsome Jack.
  • Throwing Your Shield Always Works: Athena can toss her Kinetic Aspis when she has it out. It can eventually be upgraded to pinball between targets.
  • Underground Monkey: One of the enemy types are moon drifters — they look like regular drifters, except blue and crater-y.
  • Understatement: One of the loading screen tips is "Once there was a man named Jack who wanted to find a Vault and become a hero. Things kind of escalated from there."
  • Villain Episode: The game's playable characters include two villains from the second game with Handsome Jack leading all four player-characters.
  • Villain Protagonist: At the very least, played straight for Jack, Wilhelm and Nisha. Claptrap and Athena are more antiheroes, the first being unable to disobey Jack while the other is moral enough to voice her objections at his increasingly questionable actions.
  • Visual Innuendo: Miss Moxxi's side purse shows two planets side by side while a rocket ship blasts off between them. "TAKING YOU DEEP... INTO SPACE."
  • Wave Motion Gun: The Eye of Helios. Some of the Laser Guns can act in this manner as well.
  • Weird Moon: The game takes place primarily on Elpis, the moon of Pandora. Helios, the floating Hyperion Space Base in orbit acts as the moon to the players (except now it's being seen from the back, unlike in the previous game).
  • Welcome to Corneria: After you kill the merrif, the citizens of Concordia will constantly talk about it.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Jack pulls one on Moxxi, Roland and Lilith when they betray him after you defeat Colonel Zarpedon.
    • AND everyone pulls one on Lilith when she tries to execute Athena. She's, fortunately, stopped by an outside party.
  • What the Hell Is That Accent?: At one point, Moxxi's B4R-BOT attempts an Australian accent that gets stuck in Brooklyn. Obviously intentional as Claptraps aren't known for getting anything right.
    • B 4 R-BOT is also pretending to be somebody else. He may be putting on the accent in an attempt to sound more convincing.
  • Whip It Good: Nisha's melee attack. One loading tip even Lamp Shades how kinky this is.

Borderlands 2Creator/Take-Two InteractiveCall Of Cthulhu: Dark Corners Of The Earth
Borderlands 2Play Station 3 Brothers in Arms
Borderlands 2First-Person ShooterBrink
Borderlands 2Video Games of the 2010sBrawl Busters
Borderlands 2Xbox 360 Brink
Too Much InformationImageSource/Video GamesInterquel
Borderlands 2UsefulNotes/SteamBotanicula

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