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Borderlands: Zombie Island of Dr. Ned (PC)

Borderlands: Zombie Island of Dr. Ned (PC)

Borderlands was a brilliant game and one that I have been playing since it was released. The Zombie Island Of Dr. Ned is the first downloadable content for the game which only costs $10. For this you get a whole new zone as well as new enemies, new missions and chances to get more equipment and loot. The Island is very dramatic in design with a sub horror ‘halloween feel’ to it, populated with a plethora of undead zombie forces.

The original Borderlands had a rather weak storyline and those who like to follow a more focused game will probably prefer the expansion pack as it has a very definite story arc -hunting down undead forces and running through the macabre and eerily lit environments. What appealed to me about this add on was the tongue in cheek approach which at times made cultural references to many aspects of modern life. The zone is accessible from the fast travel menu and as such is total separate from the main game as it doesn’t connect into the Vault Story at all.

While the environment is wonderfully designed and lit there are certainly indications that the developers were having a laugh with this expansion pack as the plethora of lighted pumpkins and even the pumpkin headed bosses put you firmly in mind of a cheesy horror B movie. None of the foes, (which are mainly zombies) carry any guns but they do attack in huge forces, much like you would experience in Valve’s Left4Dead franchise. Ordinary zombies pop up from the ground and attack you directly – head on and there are many times when you will find it hard to cope with the sheer numbers heading in your direction. As well as traditional zombies, the game throws spitter zombies at you and they can destroy your eyesight temporarily with their venom – in combination with an array of ordinary zombies they make your life very difficult.

There are also larger hulking monsters – Frankenstein style beasts who have some special modes to cause serious damage – such as ground pounding melee attacks. They are also resistant to certain attacks you can normally inflict on zombies – specifically electrical damage, which causes you more trouble than them! As i said earlier there are going to be some comparisons made with Left4Dead and while they are similar in nature, Left4Dead 2 is a superior first person shooter combat game – it is much more exciting and fluid. That said, Borderlands Zombie Island is different for the fact alone that you gain experience points for kills and get loot that the creatures drop. Both have their place in zombie shooter land and both are very rewarding, if even under slightly different circumstances.

The missions are massively fun and once you meet Doctor Ned you are shown his undead experimentations and given quests to help him as well as an array of side quests to expand the content. Many of the missions revolve around very similar style of MMO quests you would expect already – kill certain creatures, find items or meet with xx person and then perform yy quest. There is nothing dramatically different with the core quest ideas, although the setting and enemies are wildly different from the main content of the game you will have played to this point.

The expansion pack also feels very different because although you are still shooting everything in sight there are no vehicles and the enemies are more melee based which means you feel significantly more technologically advanced than your foes but are dealing with slightly more claustrophobic conditions which makes the tension all the more dramatic.

The Zombie Island of Dr. Ned is great fun and will be sure to extend the game life for people who are maybe just growing bored of the first one. Sadly the level cap isn’t extended further however there is enough variety both with enemy creatures and map locations to breathe new life into the core game mechanic. The design is very professionally designed and there will be more than one occasion when you chuckle out loud at the witty story missions and dialogue. The core gameplay is still very addictive and it should extend the life of the game for quite some time, for a very modest outlay – great value for money.


New enemy types, new environments, very interesting setting.
Still the same very stylish design but with very different creatures and elements incorporated. Excellent.
Great voice acting and solid ambience
For $10 you really do get a decent amount of value for money. Between 5-8 hours of game time.

If you loved Borderlands and you like zombies, this is a no brainer.

About Author

Stuart Davidson

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