A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
Borderlands 3 is an over-the-top shooter that's main focus is mayhem and destruction. While players can complete quests to help others, it's generally little more than an excuse to charge in, guns blazing, to wreak more havoc.
Positive Role Models
Some characters might be a bit more "heroic" than others, but none of them would be considered positive role models by any stretch of the imagination. The Borderlands universe is one where most problems are quickly resolved by making sure your side is the one left standing when the carnage ends.
Ease of Play
Borderlands 3 changes up a few mechanics from the previous games, particularly in the way Action Skills are handled, but the basic gameplay should be instantly familiar to fans of the series, as well as those who play first-person shooters.
Violence & Scariness
Violence in the Borderlands series has always been extreme, and Borderlands 3 is no exception. In spite of its animated cel-shaded art style, characters and creatures are still killed in massive explosions of blood and gore. Characters lose their heads, get dismembered, and otherwise find lethal ways to leave chunks of body parts behind.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Violence & Scariness in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Sex, Romance & Nudity
While there's no nudity, there's no shortage of characters that are presented in a sexual manner, whether in appearance, in attitude, or both. There are also plenty of lines of dialogue that feature sexual innuendo, or just mention sex in a blatant way. On a positive note, it does a great job of presenting various characters of different sexual orientations and identities without any stigma.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Sex, Romance & Nudity in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Dialogue doesn't shy away from frequent use of strong profanity, including "f--k," "s--t," "ass," and more. The game's online co-op component could expose younger gamers to other offensive language and toxic behavior from other players via party chat.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Language in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Products & Purchases
The game is the latest in the Borderlands series, which has seen sequels, prequels, spinoffs, and more. Borderlands 3 also has planned paid downloadable content in the future, which players can buy a la carte or via a Season Pass.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
There are various bars and similar locations scattered throughout the game, as well as occasional references to being drunk.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Drinking, Drugs & Smoking in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Borderlands 3 is a post-apocalyptic, sci-fi themed first-person shooter game available for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Google Stadia, and Windows-based PCs. The game continues over-the-top violence and mature humor that has become a signature style for the series. Players use a variety of different guns and abilities to kill humans, robots, and creatures that inhabit the worlds the player visits on their quest to track down and recover loot from mythical "Vaults" scattered around the galaxy. It doesn't shy away from extreme and graphic violence, as well as frequent use of strong swearing including "f--k" and "s--t." Parents should also take note that the game includes and online cooperative component, which could potentially expose younger gamers to other offensive behavior/language while in party chat with other players. There are mentions of drinking, along with frequent sexual innuendo or characters presented in a sexual manner. On the plus side, characters of different sexual orientations and identities are presented without stigma in the game.
Is It Any Good?
This action adventure game, is the reigning king of the "loot shooters," and its latest installment doesn't look like the franchise will be giving up the throne anytime soon. Borderlands 3 generally stays true to the formula that made it such a success to begin with. There's just a lot more of it. Pandora (and its moon in Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel) was already a pretty big sandbox to play in, but the addition of multiple new planets to explore makes for a massive new playground. And the arsenal of weapons and items available to find has grown exponentially in scale. This is a double-edged sword, though, as you'll never really find yourself getting attached to any one piece of equipment for long before it becomes obsolete. And trying to find a similar item is such a slim matter of chance that you're better off constantly trying out whatever new gear is tossed your way.
Once again, the franchise introduces gamers to a new team of Vault Hunters. Each plays in a completely unique way from the others, but still manages to feel familiar in a lot of ways to fans. The characters' skill system got a major overhaul this time around though, opening up even more ways to customize the heroes to fit your particular style. Players get to add new moves to their arsenals as well, such as a power slide and climbing mechanic, but for the most part, the controls feel like slipping back into a comfortable pair of shoes. Make no mistake about it, this is still the same ol' Borderlands that fans have grown to know and love. Unfortunately, that's also its biggest drawback. Sometimes it suffers under its own weight, particularly in its story. Borderlands 3 tries to make room for every imaginable character that's ever shown up throughout the series to make an appearance. This might seem like great fan service, but can feel forced, muddying the waters and confusing newcomers unfamiliar with every facet of the franchise. It also can frustrate Borderlands fans looking for more depth out of the new characters and events. But look past this, and the fast-paced action will keep you blasting for hours.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.