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Nightmare Fuel / Borderlands 2

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Pandora is a Death World, and few games display this horror in all its glory more than Borderlands 2 and its tons of DLCs.

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    In general 


  • Lab Rats, whose eyes have mutated so that something is now visible to them, and they've been driven quite insane by it.
    Witness the void.
    I don't want to SEE!
    • Doubly so if you're playing Maya. Whatever it is they're seeing? When you Phaselock them, they see it more.
  • Knock off a Goliath's helmet and enjoy the resulting Body Horror: the flesh around their head flakes off, their skull bursts from their mouth suspended on their elongated spine. That's when it starts to chase you everywhere.
    • And they talk to you, too:
    "I hate... hate... hate... HATE, HAAAAAAATE!
  • Just to show how terrifying they are to fight, they not only turn on whoever they were helping if you're not around, they get stronger for doing it. Every time he does, a musical sting plays for everyone nearby.
  • If they level up to max, they become GOD-liaths, the ultimate badass Goliath.
  • After they go berserk, you can glimpse a couple of times them laughing as they tear their former friends limb from gory limb.
  • If you look carefully at their skulls, you can see writing on them, implying that their condition is the result of something consciously done. Who made these poor bastards?
  • If you look close enough, you'll see that their skulls actually sprout right out of their mouths.

The Vault Hunters

  • All of the player characters have a few different noises for when they're set on fire/corroding/being electrocuted. For the original four and Krieg all of said noises are varying degrees of grunting in pain. Gaige, however, doesn't grunt. She screams in pain very loudly and very realistically. You get to hear a teenage girl scream in agony every time she's hit with an elemental weapon. It's...unnerving.
  • Several things Krieg says. When they say he's a Psycho, they mean it.
    Krieg: I'm beginning to remember—STOP IT! Keep the memories down with a knife in its throat! Slash it until it bleeds thought juice across the dirt until it is absorbed into nothingnrrrsss...
    Krieg: THE SILENCE! KILL IT! I'LL FIND YOUUUU! Quiet noises, and I'll STRANGLE the whispers out of you WITH A BONESAAAAAW!"
    • Playing as him is a strangely tragic and disturbing experience. Whoever he was before Hyperion got him is lost. He was irrevocably broken, turned into a monster. Krieg emerged from the experimentation as a Badass Psycho, insane with a need to kill. Krieg's former psyche was sent to the deepest depths of his soul and out of control of his own body. His other personality knows this, and has seemingly given up on ever recovering. A player rips their way across Pandora, occasionally hearing the sane part of Krieg quietly commenting on the action, in an utterly mournful voice. Being a Badass Psycho isn't as cool as it seems.
    • Even the names of his skins start to tell a grim story when you piece them together: "I AM THE ONLY ONE LEFT" "I'LL NEVER GO BACK" "DON'T MAKE ME DO IT" "CAN'T CAN'T CAN'T DO IT" "DON'T STOP PLEASE HELP ME" "NO NO NO NO NO" "WHYYYYYYYY"
    • Krieg's lines can be made far worse because they flip-flop between nonsensical comedy and psychotic horror with little warning, sometimes even with the same thought.
    You're going to scream just like she did. Open mouth. Open heart! Blood and noise forever piercing my skull! Poisoning me with its psychopathic, purple liquid. We watched it all. We felt the knife edge splat down the middle! CAN YOU HEAR ME?!
    • It's implied in the Sir Hammerlock vs. the Son of Crawmerax DLC that Dr. Samuels, who was forced against her will to conduct experiments for Hyperion and is at least partly responsible for Krieg's creation, may have gone just as crazy as him out of guilt for what she had done. Her letter to Krieg is written in typical Borderlands Psycho-speak, although it's possible that Krieg is merely giving his interpretation of what is actually written down, or that she wrote it that way specifically so he could understand it.
      • Some of the Raving Retribution rants (which got patched out for whatever reason) seem to imply this as well.
        Krieg: I'll never forget the way her holes cried. The way she screamed in agony as she pushed the knife slowly into my sternum. Such a beautiful symphony of feelings, and at the end of it, SHE WAS SO! MUCH! GREATER! MY OPERATIC DIVA OF FLESH AND STEEL!
    • Basically, anytime you hear the psycho personality speak in a normal tone of voice instead of comically shouting everything at the top of his lungs like he usually does, you're probably going to hear something creepy.
    • It gets downright unnerving after you get the Handsome Jack voice modulator, because while the other Vault Hunters express disdain at hearing Jack's voice come out of their mouth whenever they speak, Krieg simply doesn’t speak. At all. For him to go from a loud and Boisterous Bruiser to a silent and deadly killing machine is terrifying, and it’s all because of how much he hates Jack.
  • The Vault Hunters themselves from their enemies' point of view! Krieg especially!
    • Axton: Imagine being part of a bandit clan and you see this military looking guy charging at you and your friends! Suddenly, he deploys this metal device which acts almost like another one of him and even worse, it seems like he's got an infinite magazine as he riddles you and your dumb friends with bullet after bullet alongside his turret! Overkill much?
    • Maya: Looks can literally kill as this beautiful Siren uses her special abilities to enhance the effects of her elemental guns and lock one of your friends into a black hole as you all scream for mercy as you are being burned/shocked/dissolved to death! Death never looked so charming before!
    • Salvador: Look at this idiot midget dashing into the fray shouting stupid catchphrases and giving the bird! He's nothing compared to you and your Hyperion buddies! WRONG! No matter what you do, the small guy just keeps taking it and decides to get serious by using both his hands to fire weapons! It's literally a bulletstorm as you dive for cover hoping his bullets don't pierce through you! Suddenly you hear two RPG's being fired. SHIT!!!
    • Zer0: It's just another day out in Pandora. You and your clan have been out here for hours scouting the terrain and killing anyone dumb enough to give you trouble or not! Suddenly, you hear screaming as one of your members suddenly has a bullet put through his head and there's no one in sight who could have shot him. You and your team decide to investigate the reason behind this when someone randomly runs up to another one of your friends and starts attacking them. Before any of you have time to react, everyone starts dropping like flies as the sound of a sword slicing flesh is heard. As you succumb to death, you see the person who did it and it looks an awful lot like a robot or is it a ninja as it speaks in a weird fashion seemingly mocking your group. "Leaves falling from trees / Snow drifting onto the ground / Life leaving your corpse."
    • Gaige: You see a young, high-school-age looking girl stroll casually towards your camp. As you rush out to get her, this peppy little girl, who you notice has a robotic left arm, pulls a blue SMG and goes to town on the whole camp. She seems to get crazier and crazier as the battle goes on, firing blindly and pulling Wolverine Claws, murdering everything in sight. Eventually, her huge-ass Robot Buddy joins the fight and begins tearing everybody apart with gigantic claws and elemental beams. In the end, it's just you and her, and the last thing you see is this sweet high school girl's tool hammer hitting your forehead.
    • Krieg: So normally the various Bandits and Psychos dotting Pandora's landscape seem to get along fine, at least within certain communities. So you, a marauder, probably aren't thinking too much about the Badass Psycho roaming around The Dust at the Southern end of your camp. Until, of course, you hear the urgent shouting and pained screams coming from your buddies near the entrance. This Psycho is somehow a thousand times more resilient than your average, tissue-paper-thin specimen. He unloads lead, explosives, and a seemingly endless supply of buzzaxes into the camp's collective face, with no end in sight. You send out some Flaming Psychos to try to take him down, but the beast seems to enjoy, and even be empowered by, the flames. When he should finally be dead, he just pulls out a bundle of dynamite and runs around like a lunatic on speed, destroying everything in sight. Your own burning flesh is the last thing you smell as this impacable Psychopath breathes fire directly into your face.
    • Or, to look at it another way...
      • Axton: For a Badass Marauder like you, it's just another day in Sawtooth Cauldron...when a Commando jumps down from a nearby cliff into your area and starts blasting away with his Vladof assault rifle. The bullets are going everywhere, faster than you can blink, faster than any bullets you've seen, and chopping off limbs and imploding your buddies' faces. You lead an all-out charge against him, while air support flies in...then he throws down his turret. Two turrets that stick to the walls, with a giant shield, and a gun that slags you, while its rocket pods shoot buzzards out of the sky, pinpointing them with their laser beam. You bombard him with endless grenades, rockets, gyrojets and bullets...but he shrugs it off like it never even harmed him. Eventually, the Commando fires a 2-round burst through your helmet and you fall down, clutching your Bandit rifle, watching your legs separate from your body as the commando continues firing, cheerfully yelling as crashing buzzards, loot midgets and bloody limbs all fly past him. For him, all this carnage means a good day.
      • Maya: Another day patrolling on Thousand Cuts as a Hyperion soldier is livened up when you spot a pretty Siren who also just wandered through the Death Wall that fried loads of dumb bandits. You signal to the other yellow-clad soldiers around you, and cock your assault rifle. They take hidden positions as you slowly inch closer...then she spots you. She immediately locks you in a giant black hole. You squirm around, trying to throw down your turret, but unable to move as she lifts her Dahl SMG and shocks your comrades and loaders to death, before completely wrecking the Constructor. Then, she turns around, smirks at your helplessness and fires a 3-round-burst through your visor, into your terrified face and straight through your brain.
      • Salvador: It looks like a fine morning in Buzzard Academy from the outside, but inside, there's only absolute havoc. A steroid-fueled midget with a mohawk just entered your camp, with nothing but a legendary Torgue pistol in one hand, and what seems to be a Moxxi-made slag pistol on the other. You watched your buddies attack, only to get slagged and have their skin shaved off or limbs amputated for their troubles as the midget screams one-liners and shatters skulls with his fist. The Buzzards come, the midget switches weapons, and the Vladof sniper rifle/launcher combo in his hands proceed to send them crashing into the desert below. As you attempt to shoot him with your Bandit shotgun, the grinning midget shoots your buddy and the gasoline tank near him, burning you to death while the shells you desperately fired are simply absorbed into his ammo supply, as he shoots and shoots and shoots...
      • Zero: You're a Marshal patrolling the street near the Sheriff's office, when suddenly there's the sound of a giant gun battle in Main Street. You look through the scope of your assault rifle, and see nothing but bloodstained walls and the ground littered with countless corpses, with terrible wounds and kunai embedded through their chests. As you stop to continue watching over the far end of Gunslinger's Corner, you see dozens of bandits being wiped out by a lone sniper. The sniper is so talented that his bullets are piercing through his targets and hitting anyone caught in the flight path. However, you can't see who's doing the shooting. Soon, you go back to watching the far end again...when a few minutes later, your fellow Marshal notices an assassin, unnervingly tall and clad head to toe in body armor, advancing with his sword drawn. It's impossible to tell if he is human, but that doesn't matter - you've got him in your sights. The Sheriff and Deputy Winger open fire on him, and so does everyone else. Somehow, he's deflecting the bullets with his sword, and there's no wounds on him. Then his body explodes and sends a shock nova around you. Recovering from it, you find that it was a decoy, and the real assassin's just wiped out almost everyone with his revolver. You look on horror as your boss, an ex-Vault Hunter and the resident badass who can outshoot everyone in the town, is blasted in the chest by the assassin's Maggie and falls from her vantage point on the roof. Deputy Winger is waving his shotgun, yelling something that you can't hear-and the assassin appears again, in front of you. But this time, he's real, and before you can open fire, he slices you in half.
      • Gaige: So you and some fellow Marauders are just relaxing in the Dahlwell Oasis, talking about that grilled skag you just shared, when up strolls this pretty redheaded girl in a skirt. She runs right up to your group, Coach Gun drawn, and is spouting total nonsense like she was auditioning for a slightly more lucid psycho. She opens fire and you quickly try to cover yourself. Only except you realize that every one of her shots is missing. Like, missing by a mile. Your friends share a laugh at this, this girl obviously has never used a gun in her life. Then the laughing suddenly stops when the guy right beside you suddenly bursts into bloody salsa. You realize that so many of those missed bullets are bouncing around the place like pinballs, and every wall of lead from the Jakobs shotgun is tearing everyone apart like a million Torgue rounds! You manage to find cover as more and more of your group are splattered all over the place thanks to this redhead from hell. When you finally strike the nerve to aim your Bandit repeater at her head, you're face to face with a floating metal demon of a robot covered in bones, knives and a hellish red glow. The last thing you see are her bladed fingers, impossibly sharp and shiny, heading right for your terrified eyes.
      • Krieg: You're a Hyperion employee. Opportunity is under attack by the tallest psycho you've ever seen, with arms the size of autocannons. Immediately, he whips out his Buzz Axe and charges towards the nearest loaders and engineers. He's just a Badass one, right? Wrong. You watch in horror, forgetting that you're supposed to be Jack's freakin' body double as his axe blows up your friends and whacks Badass loaders in half, and his Torgue shotgun cutting down more and more Hyperion forces with every reload, even when his shields are down. And when he isn't slicing or shooting, he's chucking dynamite everywhere, blowing up everything in sight. A Super Badass Loader unloads its guns onto the psycho, setting him on fire. But to your horror, it just makes him stronger. You desperately raise your Bitch and fire round after round, watching the Vault Hunter turn your boss's glittering Orwellian paradise into a land of burning men and twisted metal, until the Psycho finally turns towards you, wreathed in flames, and slams his axe straight into your heart.
    • And you think that one of the Vault Hunters is a Nightmare to face? Imagine a pair or three or four or five or six of them against you. It kind of makes you pity the unfortunate souls that have to fight them, yes? Especially when a pair of them compliments one another, strength and weakness wise. For example, the player character version of the Ultimate Badass Psycho and the Physical God character type that is the Siren will result in a planet-wide bloodbath.

    Main game 
  • The fate of Helena Pierce, and the civilians she was escorting. You can hear about this on a hidden ECHO log located in the Southern Shelf level, at Liar's Berg. Jack shoots Helena dead on the spot, then casually orders Wilhelm to kill the others. It's only an audio recording, so we simply hear Wilhelm acknowledge the command and open fire — and the civilians screaming.
  • While it's Played for Laughs, Tannis' Sanity Slippage (as revealed in her ECHO notes) is more disturbing than anything: not only has she become obsessed with the vault, she has developed a social phobia so extreme even people saying hi or telling her she's pretty makes her have a massive nose bleed or vomit for hours.
  • The quest where you have to carry a midget up to the giant fake dragon and set him on fire. Sure, he's going along with it voluntarily, but still, you're basically helping a guy burn himself alive out of devotion to a goddess that you know isn't actually a goddess.
  • So you just defeated Wilhelm, and have retrieved the cargo the train he guarded was carrying. While it's not the Vault Key, it is something that's still useful - a power core for Sanctuary's shield that can replace the one you just put in a few hours ago, and hopefully power it for a lot longer. You go back home, take out the old one, put in the new... and suddenly there's a pause. Angel's face appears on a screen right above where you put in the core, as Jack calls in and drops the Wham Line - Angel is working for Jack. And then she disables the city's shields so that Jack can start bombarding it with Moonshot rounds.
    • Up until this point, the game was a mixture of kickass gunfights with bandits, robots, and the local wildlife, and absurd dark humor from the likes of Tiny Tina. Plus you're gradually growing in power as either a Military Maverick with a deployable turret, a short and roided out dual-wielding berserker, a completely faceless Ninja with a super sharp blade, a cheerful high school girl with a killbot by her side, the Pandoran equivalent of a physical goddess, and/or a playable version of the Psychos who can get power from all the suffering he takes. Suddenly, all the awesomeness and hilarity comes to a halt, as Sanctuary - which is your home at this point - is now being blasted apart by Handsome Jack. You go in and hear people screaming as the place is being hammered with what seems like hellish meteors, and with some unlucky souls being liquefied by the impacts as you pass through.
    • Scooter's lines make it worse in all honesty. Previously he was a dorky, perverted mechanic who nonetheless seemed friendly enough. But when Sanctuary is getting torn apart, it gets replaced by a guy who's in a major panic and supremely scared about what's happening. It can possibly make you scared that the place is going to be pounded into dust before long.
  • The log of Taggart, a Hunter who, well, hunted the Stalkers, in the "Overlook" level. It all starts out funny enough but the last log emphasizes how much of a Death World Pandora is:
    Taggart: Chapter F... Chapter Ffff... Henry ate my hands.. she chewed them off in front of me and I swear to Jack... the spiky bitch laughed as she did it. Mom, I just don't know what to do... No! Get away! Henry! No, Henry! Get back! No! Mommy! Mommy! MOOOOOOOOMMMMMY! Accompanied by chewing noises
    • The concluding quip of the quest doesn't help, either:
    "You found Taggart’s missing chapter and, in so doing, discovered a soul-crushing truth: all the confidence in the world cannot prevent you from dying frightened and alone. But on the upside, you got PAID!"
  • The entirety of the "Wildlife Exploitation Preserve" level. To wit:
    • On open air, the area is full of the aforementioned Stalkers and other creatures that can (and will) make your life a living hell, especially in True and Ultimate Vault Hunter mode. On closed areas, it's Hyperion's robots.
    • The first time you enter the Wildlife Exploitation Preserve area, you're told that Mordecai's BFF Bloodwing has been captured by Jack. After getting through a building full of Hyperion employees, robots, and varied species, you reach Bloodwing's cell... only to find it empty. Turns out Jack moved her to a big open-area observatory which is where you confront her in her Slagged form. Mordecai asks you to lower her health level so he can shoot a tranquilizing dart that will calm her. At one point, Jack taunts you about the different elemental effects that she can mutate into, which corresponds with the element she resists at that point in time, forgetting about one of them on purpose. Once Mordecai calms her down, Jack remembers the missing element: Explosive! And activates a bomb planted on Bloodwing's collar that decapitates her in the most gruesome way.
    • There's a side mission chain that involves slag test logs, namely the fate of Tiny Tina's parents. Jack caught a scientist and forced her to perform horrible experiments on her test subjects. Dr. Samuels, the aforementioned scientist, clearly despises having to do said tests, but she still does so because of Jack's constant death threats. And when Tina's fathers' fate is sealed, Tina's mother gave her a grenade that she uses to escape from the facility.
  • "Opportunity" is basically a Nineteen Eighty-Four-style city played for laughs. Then, at the third info kiosk we meet, Jack is cheerfully talking, until the end of the sentence, when his tone turns into a very threatening, cold one that he normally reserves for talking to you.
    "Remember, we should all love our parents...but love me more."
    • You can always see Bloodwing's decapitated corpse on full display.
    • While undeniably an evil douchebag, Jack manages to somehow be funny with his sheer mania and trolling. However, once you clear the level, his smug, taunting personality suddenly becomes threatening and serious, and his dialogue from then on becomes surprisingly sinister, particular his line when he sics the BNK3R on you.
    Handsome Jack (In a completely serious, low and seething tone) Now do me a favor...and die.
  • Once Jack decides to intervene directly following Angel's death, we see just how downright terrifying he can be when he's not being a petty jackass. Before, he was a smug bastard who derived joy from taking petty potshots at you, and then suddenly, Roland has a bullet in his chest and Lilith is kidnapped and tortured! It may be justified, seeing as how you helped kill his daughter, but DAMN...
  • Jack's treatment of his daughter, which you learn from an audio tape in Fyrestone/Jackville. His sick, sick treatment of her...Not mention his real face. Pure Body Horror.
  • The music in Sawtooth Cauldron is very, very, ominous and actually unnerving, to the point where you'll actually be relieved when a gunfight starts.
  • Lilith in "Angel Vision" after the game's Wham Episode. Unlike Angel, Lilith just looks like she's in agonizing pain whenever she talks to you like that. And she is, instantly regenerating in Hero's Pass from Jack, who is stabbing her, repeatedly.


Captain Scarlett and Her Pirate's Booty

Mr. Torgue's Campaign of Carnage

Sir Hammerlock's Big Game Hunt

  • Professor Nakayama's prime experiment, Jackenstein. Basically, a Bullymong augmented with two electric generators on its back, and a Handsome Jack mask embedded into its stomach. As if the implications for bringing the big bad Handsome Jack wasn't bad enough, in spite of Nakayama's incompetence, but this creature is all but invulnerable in every part of its body except those mentioned areas. When Nakayama said it was the most dangerous creature on Pandora, he wasn't kidding.

Tiny Tina's Assault on Dragon Keep

  • The first time you encounter a mimic. You've just finished cleaning up some fantasy foes, and are ready to open the nearby chest of loot... only to be greeted with a roaring huge mouth with spike-shaped teeth and a huge tongue instead of loot who's going at you at fast speed.
  • The penultimate boss battle. Having the person you've been trying to save turn out to be Evil All Along isn't exactly new, but when that person is revealed to be Angel, it becomes quite chilling. And she's definitely creepy. You do not want a corrupted Drider smiling at you as she spews spiders from her body at you.
    Princess Angel: At last, I'm free... free to wreak my vengeance UPON ALL THE WORLD!!
    • Becomes just plain sad when you realize that it's Tina who made her evil, in a desperate attempt to blame someone for Roland's death. In the campaign, Angel stated that Handsome Jack tricked the last four Vault Hunters with Angel, and Tina made Angel into a villain. In other words, Tina knew she was a danger, and Roland paid the price. Tina made Angel as she saw her as: A lure.
  • The Handsome Sorcerer. He gets so graphic that even Brick points that out.
    Brick: Damn, Tina. That was graphic.
    Tina: Don't hate the player, hate the game.
    • In fact, that WHOLE last stretch of the DLC is rigged with The Sorcerer going into gory details about what he and his soldiers are going to do with the queen! It even gives the vibe that this is timed! Of course, the queen ends up just fine and killed her attackers easily, but still.

Commander Lilith and the Fight for Sanctuary

  • Handsome Jack was one thing, but Colonel Hector's attempted planetary genocide was the straw that broke the camel's back for the bandits. Someone will unite them into a single cohesive unit and they will become a truly terrifying force to be reckoned with across the Six Galaxies, capable of invading other planets. Vault Hunters, prepare yourselves: The Children are coming...

Headhunters packs and other DLCs

  • You know how the Goliath's face peels back, and their skull protrudes from what used to be their mouths? Have you ever wondered how your Vault Hunter would look with their skull exposed and their face peeled back like a hood? No, you didn't? Well, too bad, because the reward for completing Mad Moxxi and the Wedding Day Massacre gives it to you anyway in the form of unlockable head options for each Vault Hunter.
    • Krieg's is the worst. On other Vault Hunters, it's clear that their faces were pulled back over their skulls. On Krieg, whatever skin wasn't being held in place by his Psycho mask was just torn away. The skin still on his head is ripped from where it evidently caught on the mask's eye-hole, leaving Krieg's exposed, lidless eye visible in its bloody socket.
  • T.K Baha's Bloody Harvest has a few hidden Easter eggs that pay homage to three infamously terrifying horror movies. In order to unlock a secret boss, you'll have to find three hidden TV sets. For the first one, stray from the path and you'll find an abandoned tent with one of the TV sets inside. Get closer, and the TV will suddenly switch on, showing a Psycho shot from a weird angle, who just stares directly at the camera, before it cuts to static. It's supposed to be a shoutout to The Blair Witch Project, but it's still pretty jarring.
    • Another is a reference to The Ring but with Claptrap in place of Sadako and Moxxi in place of the woman in painting.