Sunday, February 02, 2014

Review: Borderlands - The Zombie Island of Dr. Ned (DLC)

Coming just one month after the initial release of Borderlands (reviewed here), the first in a series of four downloadable content (DLC) titles surfaced to expand the game's horizons. The Zombie Island of Dr. Ned takes players on a romp through Jakobs Cove, a zombie infested region of Pandora that they've yet to explore. Is it worth getting your hands on for the price?

Genre: Action, RPG
Developer: Gearbox Software
Publisher: 2K Games
Release Date: November 24th, 2009
Play Time: 4-5 Hours
Price: $9.99 USD
Platforms: PC, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3

Official Website



                                      










Rating: 8.0/10







Coming just one month after the initial release of Borderlands (reviewed here), the first in a series of four downloadable content (DLC) titles surfaced to expand the game's horizons. The Zombie Island of Dr. Ned takes players on a romp through Jakobs Cove, a zombie infested region of Pandora that they've yet to explore. Is it worth getting your hands on for the price?

It seems as though zombies are currently plaguing the entire world which we live in; from movies to comic books to video games. There are a fair share of games out right now that fulfill the headshot blasting zombie carnage that we love and crave, but it's something that is becoming a commercial gimmick in the long run. Fortunately, the gimmick feeling doesn't carry over into The Zombie Island of Dr. Ned since it brings about an entirely new side of Pandora to uncover. In total there are six newly designed swampy, wooded areas to travel through; Jakobs Cove, Hallow's End, Generally Hospital, Dead Haven, Lumber Yard and The Mill. The color schemes and new implementation of forestry, overgrowth and swamps really break up the monotony of dusty wastelands that caused the original maps of Borderlands to feel rather dry.


The story is fairly weak, but hey it's based on zombie survival so who really cares... right? Basically the player will meet up with Dr. Ned (who is definitely, 100% not Dr. Zed from the original game, but rather his twin brother) in the beginning and work alongside him to try and create a cure for the zombie infection that is wreaking havoc on the inhabitants of Jakobs Cove. However, things soon go awry in a way that if it is detailed here, it will contain spoilers for the remainder of the content; I did say the story is pretty weak, it is also short and to the point.

There are twenty-five new missions to take on in this new content that send the player scavenging throughout the entirety of the six new maps. Along the way there are some new enemies and bosses to encounter, but not a lot. The player will face generic zombies, suicide zombies that explode, Psycho and midget zombies, Skelerakks, Corpse Eaters, Toros, Wereskags and more. There is one Easter Egg boss worth pointing out, Pumpkinhead, who is a tribute to the infamous cult classic horror movie. Also encountered few and far between are loot goons, who carry the loot treasure chests on their backs and must be killed in order to obtain the weapons and ammo within.


The biggest annoyance with The Zombie Island of Dr. Ned is the overabundance of zombies that spawn out of nowhere in a seemingly endless abundance. They do however end, once you're patient enough, but this makes getting from one objective to another laborious. The only upside to this is whenever you're collecting brains, by shooting the zombies in the head (surprise!), for a certain mission chain. While the zombies do not spawn infinitely, it appears that the two flying foes of the content may do just that; Corpse Eaters and Skelerakks, and man oh man are these guys bothersome if you venture too close to the beaches. This will especially irritate those who find enjoyability in exploring for hidden Easter Eggs, Claptraps and loot.

That being said, overall The Zombie Island of Dr. Ned is genuinely entertaining DLC, especially for the horror fanatic. The campaign will last the player roughly four to five hours, give or take, and it has a moderate replayability factor to it. Horror lovers will welcome the inclusion of many genre exclusive references. At this point you're better off getting the Borderlands Game of the Year Edition that includes the four DLC titles that came out, but if you're stuck with the original game you'll find the $9.99 worth it for this material.

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