Borderlands 2 "Girlfriend Mode" Helps Noobs Win

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In coming shit storm with radical feminists declaring jihad in

3...2...1...
Well, there we go!

GloatingSwine:

nexus:

You don't have to use it.

But hey, at least this time they're telling us the character balance is fucked, rather than letting us realise that Lilith is an unstoppable god-queen and Brick and Roland are borderline useless excepting in very specific class mods because elemental damage rules all.

No... they are saying that that particular class is good for people who have trouble aiming in FPSs. I'd bet that for a average player, that skill tree is probably not all that useful, since you'll probably be able to hit anyways.

Lucane:

SacremPyrobolum:

Lucane:
snip

More toward the first guy you quoted now that I think about it.

Awesome! Except for the whole... you know.

I don't.

Now I'm intrigued.

I'm no game designer, or much of a game player, but why don't they do what they did to me in Alliance training, but in a form that fits this game?

Have good instructors tell you how to use a gun, combining your hand-eye coordination, wits, and reflexes, and increase the difficulty of your training and targets as you get more skilled at firing a gun.

Also, the title they gave this thing feels off to me. Playing first person shooters with your girlfriend is like checking your email on your work computer; it kind of ruins them both.

ha! a game mode for me then :P

Great idea.

Can't wait to try it with my friends who suck at games. Can't wait to try the Hard Mode myself. Unsurprised at the combined sexism and pre-order DLC reaction from many others in this thread.

Moonlight Butterfly:

At this point it looks like he was speaking about his own girlfriend and not women as a whole which is fine by me.

And even if he was, it wouldn't have been a big deal. It is a joke, but not taking everything too seriously and not foaming at the mouth at every sexist joke made is too much to ask from the Internet it seems (Not targeting you, by the way).

The outcry over Hitman, lara and other examples of serious, blatant sexism was completely understandable. Outcry over petty jokes like these make me shake my head in pity.

OT: Sounds like a somewhat decent idea I suppose. I still need to finish the first game though.

SpaceBat:

Moonlight Butterfly:

At this point it looks like he was speaking about his own girlfriend and not women as a whole which is fine by me.

And even if he was, it wouldn't have been a big deal. It is a joke, but not taking everything too seriously and not foaming at the mouth at every sexist joke made is too much to ask from the Internet it seems (Not targeting you, by the way).

The outcry over Hitman, lara and other examples of serious, blatant sexism was completely understandable. Outcry over petty jokes like these make me shake my head in pity.

Oh I'd have a massive problem with it if it was called that in the game. But it's not so...yeah.

Moonlight Butterfly:

Oh I'd have a massive problem with it if it was called that in the game. But it's not so...yeah.

How so? It would be using an obvious stereotype to bring out a chuckle. People know that girl gamers are in no way inherently inferior to guy gamers and such a title would be nothing but a mere joke. Why would you take it so seriously?

It would be like creating a hardcore gamer skill, where you increase your accuracy in exchange for higher shop prices or something, because of lack of social skills and having a pimple riddled face (crappy example, I know. Don't care). It would be jokingly insulting, but I have better things to do than throw a fit over petty stuff like this when there are more blatant, serious cases of sexism and racism (and many other issues) out there.

SpaceBat:

Moonlight Butterfly:

Oh I'd have a massive problem with it if it was called that in the game. But it's not so...yeah.

How so? It would be using an obvious stereotype to bring out a chuckle. People know that girl gamers are in no way inherently inferior to guy gamers and such a title would be nothing but a mere joke. Why would you take it so seriously?

It would be like creating a hardcore gamer skill, where you increase your accuracy in exchange for higher shop prices or something, because of lack of social skills and having a pimple riddled face (crappy example, I know. Don't care). It would be jokingly insulting, but I have better things to do than throw a fit over petty stuff like this when there are more blatant, serious cases of sexism and racism (and many other issues) out there.

Because it suggests that women can't play games and if they are playing games then they are only doing it with their boyfriend. As someone who has probably played games since before you (and hell maybe even the devs) were born I find that more than offensive.

It's as bad as casual racism.

There may be worse examples of sexism in gaming but that doesn't mean I would let shit like this slide.

The concept of a noob mode is a good one. A lot of games have something similar in that there's a class or item/weapon that is outpowered by better players in other classes, but is somewhat more forgiving for noobs. And everyone's a noob at least once.

Re: the girlfriend comment. Yeah, it's an off the cuff comment-- although hardly unique. But given the recent sexist nastiness about games on the internets, I won't fault folks for being a bit hair trigger. Let's do a little thought experiment: what would you think if a developer had come up with a mode in which you didn't have pay as much for upgrades and called it "Jew mode"? Even if he just jokingly called it that in an interview?

Tanis:
In coming shit storm with radical feminists declaring jihad in

3...2...1...
Well, there we go!

Well most people here would consider me a feminist and I was the first to actually go and check twitter to see what the crack was.

So at least some of us are checking the facts rather than just making sweeping statements.

Mouse One:
what would you think if a developer had come up with a mode in which you didn't have pay as much for upgrades and called it "Jew mode"? Even if he just jokingly called it that in an interview?

South Park RPG has a character class called 'Jew' in place of cleric. That made me cringe a little bit, Cartman's sense of humour aside.

Moonlight Butterfly:

Because it suggests that women can't play games and if they are playing games then they are onlydoing it with their boyfriend. As someone who has probably played games since before you (and hell maybe even the devs) were born I find that more than offensive.

It's as bad as casual racism.

There may be worse examples of sexism in gaming but that doesn't mean I would let shit like this slide.

I suppose my viewpoint is simply different from yours in such cases. I've never had any issues with sexist (or racist) jokes as long as they remain light jokes (taking it too far or showing any hint of actual misogyny/misandry or racism and you've got yourself an enemy). I sincerely doubt that the dev would be seriously suggesting that women can't play games by using such a title.

I understand that you take such things a lot more serious than I do and thus understand why you'd be angry over it, but I simply disagree. I view blatant jokes like these(as hilarious or tasteless as they may be) as something not worth my anger, because it's not the actual kind of sexism we should be focusing.

Something a bit off-topic:
And perhaps I'm a bad person because of this but I quite enjoy making racist (and sexist) jokes with good friends as we often use stereotypes of each other's culture, skin or gender and our own as a source of entertainment.

rembrandtqeinstein:
If its anything like borderlands 1 focusing on one specific damage type leads to really boring gameplay. I quit Brick around level 20 because he was optimized around explosive damage only. He was super powerful but really repetitive.

In contrast the Siren's bullet speed and the Soldier's magazine capacity abilities makes all weapons better so you can choose not only what is best for the current situation but also whatever you think will be the most fun without sacrificing effectiveness.

The girlfriend mode thing is pretty funny but it makes sense. One of the main features of diablo style gameplay is the ability to choose your difficulty level based on your build. Borderlands 1 didn't have that because some skills were either terrible or highly situational so there really wasn't more than one build per character possible. It didn't matter because at least for me 3 of the 4 characters had enough variety to beat the vanilla game and the DLC.

But I'm hoping BL2 will have viable build choices so that my soldier doesn't play the same as my friend's soldier.

I played brick through to endgame, and I just said "fuck explosives, I want to be a literal brick", and so ignored the weapons tree for him almost entirely, and instead built a tank that when raging, pretty much physically could not die, my cool down between rage was pretty much non-existant, and the few times I did die, my "downed" status lasted over a minute. That was bricks shining area, survivability, not damage output.

As for the idea of this tree, I just know that the meta-making pros of borderlands will find some way to utilize the tree to broken levels

Soooo what if you're girlfriend is the one whose good at Shooters? Can we have a cute guy character with a boyfriend tree? O.o

SpaceBat:

Moonlight Butterfly:

Because it suggests that women can't play games and if they are playing games then they are onlydoing it with their boyfriend. As someone who has probably played games since before you (and hell maybe even the devs) were born I find that more than offensive.

It's as bad as casual racism.

There may be worse examples of sexism in gaming but that doesn't mean I would let shit like this slide.

I suppose my viewpoint is simply different from yours in such cases. I've never had any issues with sexist (or racist) jokes as long as they remain light jokes (

That's the problem though isn't it, it may be funny to you but it actually makes the people it's aimed at feel bad.

It's like the part of Risen 2 where you make you female companion work in the kitchen or the sex cards in The Witcher. It's shitty little things like that lowering the tone and making us all worse off.

It only goes to extend the 'boys club' attitude of gaming.

It isn't necessary.

Guild Wars 2 linked an ad for the gamer girl con and actually had to remove sexist comments from their feed. They then asked people outright to refrain from making such comments because they respect their female fan base.

That sentiment overrides any skimpy clothing they may stick their cloth classes in.

I find it mildly amusing how people continue to insist that the gaming community has no problem with sexism and the whole issue is completely overblown.

What's discouraging about this latest story is not his remarks: that was just a dumb thing to say, but it was obviously arising from good intentions so there's no need to boycott the game. No, what's a little more discouraging is the way people are closing ranks around him rather than admitting that, during a period where the issue of sexism in the gaming industry is coming under intense media scrutiny, it was probably a dumb idea to publicly call it 'Girlfriend Mode'.

Because really, anyone who claims that that remark wasn't appealing to a sexist stereotype of female gamers has their head about forty miles deep in the sand.

Moonlight Butterfly:

That's the problem though isn't it, it may be funny to you but it actually makes the people it's aimed at feel bad.

I am particularly venomous at the sign of actual racism and sexism, especially since I've been a victim of huge amounts of racism in the past and find the idea of inequality based on absolutely nothing to be infuriating. Stuff like "Stronger female armor means less clothing", "girls are always frail" archetypes, "a strong female character means she flips out a lot and is emotionally unstable (Triss from Witcher for example)" personality and generally most of the insulting stuff aimed at both men and women kind of tick me off, as they're often vital parts of a game that do nothing but insult a specific group. The thing is that I learned to accept completely insignificant racist or sexist jokes aimed at me as what they are: jokes. I know they don't mean it and I know they're just fooling around. I may or may not find it funny, but I'm not going to feel any negative emotions over it.

Moonlight Butterfly:

It's like the part of Risen 2 where you make you female companion work in the kitchen or the sex cards in The Witcher. It's shitty little things like that lowering the tone and making us all worse off.

Haven't played Risen, so I can't really say anything about that, but oh god those sex cards. My problem with the sex cards in Witcher however were less that they were demeaning and more that it actually brought the quality of its writing down (and Triss definitely didn't help. A case where the main female protagonist is less of a strong female character than she is one that merely screams that she's a strong female character). I don't see the point of putting such a completely unnecessary, weird and down-right shitty sidequests into a game that tries to tell a mature story. What the fuck was the point? Gotta fuck 'em all?

It went from political turmoil and grey moral choices to

Geralt: Hey, wanna do it?
Woman: Maybe.
Geralt: Here is a random item.
Woman: LET US ENGAGE IN INTERCOURSE!
*CONGRATULATIONS, YOU HAVE GAINED A USELESS SEX CARD! TIME TO CHOKE YOUR CHICKEN YEAH! BOOBIES!*

Moonlight Butterfly:

It only goes to extend the 'boys club' attitude of gaming.
It isn't necessary.

That I'm going to have to agree with although the road to solving this issues is to eliminate actual inequality. Would I want for such jokes to disappear (regardless of whom they're aimed at)? Sure, but that's more because I find them unfunny rather than genuinely insulting.

NOTE: Please excuse my English. I am not a native speaker and am less capable of wording my opinions correctly.

I picked the beserker because I wasn't good at aiming in the first place. Seriously, ruining up to a guy and unleashing Bricks flurry of fist ensures that I land at least some hits on the bad guy.

Yal:

Twilight_guy:
Secondly, this is a stupid idea. Why? Because it would far easier to creat a difficulty setting option then to fuck around with one class and its skill trees. Why not make all your classes assessable to people who can't use the mechanics as well, why force them to play only one skill tree. There is a reason difficulty options exist, and this is the kind of thing you alter with that option.

If you ratchet down the overall difficulty there'll be no challenge for "Boyfriend" and he'll be bored. Less fun for both of them. Putting this in the character customization options is definitely the way to go.

It's the same principle as a lot of those Nintendo "asymmetric multiplayer" games, where one person plays the main character and has to be good at the game, and the second player can participate and be helpful but can't really become a liability. You get to play together but you don't have to play the same game. Borderlands presumably isn't going to allow quite that wide a skill gap, you won't be giving that second controller to a seven year old like you could with Mario Galaxy, but it's not all that different otherwise.

Fine, then introduce a 'Handicap' variable on each player. Each player's character can then have different systems in place based on how well the player can play the game. Once again, you have both players being able to help without having to force people to only be able to use one tree in one class and everyone being able to access all the game's content. The idea of a skill tree is dumb and half baked.

Moonlight Butterfly:
It's like the part of Risen 2 where you make you female companion work in the kitchen

In order to steal supplies from under the cook's nose, while the main character is subjected to being the cook's errand boy (they're both working for him, just in different ways), because they're completely broke and need the gold. And you don't force her, you have to convince her to go along with your plan - and at the end you give her half the gold from the quest reward and it disappears from the game, into her pocket one would think.

Besides which, speaking as a male chef, I don't see that working in a kitchen is necessarily degrading, depending on the context obviously, but certainly not in this instance.

A current gen game is easily accessable to non-gamers? When did this happen? Let's hope it teaches BASIC hand-eye co-ordination too.

The only thing that upsets me about this is that they said the Mecromancer will be out 2~ months after release. I've generally lost interest in a game by then, but I REALLY want to play as her. I mean, she is the only character that I have more than a passing interest in.

I can't wait to check out this class on release. It's gonna add a new whole new playthrough to the game. That said, my only problem is that having such a class is good, but no as extra add-on DLC. Why not make such a class available on release rather than DLC 60 days later. I can't help but feel that if you are making a character class to be released after launch, it should be a class that has skills that are harder to be used or make the game more difficult.

Also, who fuckin' cares what it's called. For every girl gamer there are 50 clueless girlfriends. My girlfriend is clueless about games, bless her hot little heart. Did anyone stop to think that this wasn't directed at girl gamers when it was said? Clearly it's not as it makes the game easier rather than harder. But why even think about it when we can just all be offended right now.

What "Girlfriend Mode?" I don't see--oh OH, you mean the "Best Friend Forever" skill tree! Oh, okay, see, because it's called "Girlfriend Mode" in the title, I thought that's what it was actually called and that it was a new difficulty setting or something. But as it turns out, that's just what that one guy calls it! Man, I hope no one else get's as easily confused as I did and starts calling it that because I would hate to see this blow up into something way more than what it actually is.

Risingblade:
Soooo what if you're girlfriend is the one whose good at Shooters? Can we have a cute guy character with a boyfriend tree? O.o

Only women are bad at video games and only women play them because their partner wants them too.

Duh.

/sarcasm

Wait, wait, wait. So what they're doing is essentially selling the easy mode to the game as DLC? Huh? I get the whole class DLC and think it's a cool idea but they're marketing this as the way to play if you don't quite know what your doing.

DVS BSTrD:
If you can't aim a pistol you shouldn't be playing Borderlands. Period.

Oh yeah and remember to not try new things you aren't naturally good and develop new skills. That would be bad. Just play Angry Birds forever and don't get into gaming. And if you insist on getting into gaming make sure you start with a game I don't play so you don't happen to interfere with my experience in one of well over a hundred online games I'll play.

ThePS1Fan:

Oh yeah and remember to not try new things you aren't naturally good and develop new skills. That would be bad.

Playing Borderlands with easy aim mode on isn't developing new skills. It's playing on auto pilot.

Baresark:

Also, who fuckin' cares what it's called. For every girl gamer there are 50 clueless girlfriends. My girlfriend is clueless about games, bless her hot little heart. Did anyone stop to think that this wasn't directed at girl gamers when it was said? Clearly it's not as it makes the game easier rather than harder. But why even think about it when we can just all be offended right now.

Hey, look, stereotypes. We can all learn a little more about ourselves in these kinds of threads, can't we.

Easton Dark:
Playing Borderlands with easy aim mode on isn't developing new skills. It's playing on auto pilot.

Meh, everyone starts somewhere. And there will be people who jump straight into the regular classes and learn that way, and people who start easy and build up. It's whatever they want to do. It's only if they learn the ropes and still stick with their auto pilot just because they can, then I could see it creating a problem.

DVS BSTrD:

WanderingFool:

DVS BSTrD:
Learning to shot is what ARCADE games are for, or were you never dropped of at a boardwalk as a child?

Firstly, not everyone wants to waste quarters on those freaking Light-gun games.

Second, playing a Console or PC FPS is not the same as a Light-gun game, which is the only shooting game I can think of you refering to.

Thridly... hrmmmm... *insert joke comment about being left on a boardwalk as a child*

If you can't point at something using a joy/analogue stick and if you've never played in an arcade, then you're not a real gamer.

And you never attended a boardwalk birthday party? I pity you.

But I was born after arcade's hit their hey-day and I suck with joysticks because I grew up using PC game controls.

Also, boardwalk birthday parties suck, the sea is terrifying and full of jellyfish, why did someone decide to put all the fun right next to that horror.

Phasmal:
Wow that's a really fucking stupid thing to say.
Still, they've distanced themselves from the (stupid) comments, so there's that.
Making games accessable- good.
Foot in mouth- bad.

I think, as some people have stated here, the concept of what her skill tree is sounds most excellent. Their choice of words, as you've said - "Foot in mouth- bad", and I agree. I know, by statisical probability, that there's at least one woman who plays games on this planet better than I can and is at a date-able age. [sarcasm]The problem being...I have not found her and asked her out, yet.[/sarcasm] Still, would it remedy the situation any if they went "Girlfriend/Boyfriend Mode"?

I'm still unsold on the game, but I liked the first one and will probably pick it up at some point but I dunno if I will bother with the DLC.

If The Secret Armory of General Knoxx is anything to go by, their DLC will be good, if not great. Just my opinion, however.

`Well that was some word vomit`.

............Is that anything like bad alphabet soup? That's the only thing I could picture when I read that.

I'm going to be completely honest: this is a horrible idea. I can understand and appreciate the intents and purposes behind this, but the "assistance" thing should be presented as an option when creating a new character (sort of like Terraria's soft-, medium-, and hard- core presets), and be available to all characters, not a skill tree.

Note: the following statements are largely predictive based on current knowledge, and should not be taken as pure fact.

Firstly, it's gimping the customization options of a character that will be DLC; people who don't want the "abilities for retards" or "abilities for tryhards" (if that gets made) will be stuck with one (or two) upgrade tree(s), which goes against the presumed purpose (variety of gameplay styles) of having multiple trees in the first place.

Secondly, the unskilled player will be limited to a single upgrade track of a single character, and won't, due to afformentioned skill limitations, be able to try out most of the game's variety that it sells itself on.

Thirdly, I just can't see how a skill tree that gives assistive advantages to unskilled players would work. Isn't the entire basis of a skill tree that you unlock progressively more powerful abilities as you play? That would mean that the new player starts out with little to no assistance at the game's start -when they would need it the most- and would get more assistance as they get better at the game, culminating in them getting the most assistance when it's least necessary.

FoolKiller:

Azuaron:

FoolKiller:
Ugh... the further dumbing down of a game.

Well it makes it easy. I don't want to waste money on a character whose 1/3 wasted skill tree. I like a lot of things they do but a skilltree to basically eliminate one of the key components of the game. That just seems like a stupid idea.

Sorry Gearbox but I'm not biting in this case.

If you read the full article

I love this... because I pick on one aspect of the article, I get the "If you read the article" attitude.

Azuaron:
"Dumbing down a game" is what happens when they either nerf the enemies or hypercharge all the characters.

This is an opinion. In my opinion, dumbing a game down includes creating a character that effectively doesn't need to know how to play the game to play the game. This is akin to letting someone play basketball with me but they don't have to dribble because they can't be bothered. The point of a shooter is to aim and shoot at things.

If you can't be bothered to learn the basics of that then don't fucking play. If I want to do something then I go and learn how to do it, not expect the bar to be lowered.

Also, if I play online and like to play with randoms as well, it will be idiotic when I have 3 teammates all with these perks in play.

A few more things:
1. If you notice, I said that it was a no go for me. It's DLC and Gearbox has instantly lost out on this with me.

2.

Azuaron:
Besides, most people have highly specialized characters, anyway. I know I wouldn't lose sleep if Mordecai lost his gunslinger tree.

I'm not most people. Borderlands was one of my favourite games of all time and I have 17 distinct character builds and have maxed out each skill at least once. A walking difficulty slider as you put it seems like a wasted character, especially when 1/3 of it dumbs the game down.

3.

Azuaron:
Besides, haven't you heard? That skill tree isn't for you. It's for your girlfriend*.

*I'm saying that ironically. I shouldn't have to explain that, but, on The Escapist, I'm certain I do.

While I accept the humour of your statement, any girlfriend of mine can shut up and watch if they don't want to learn to play or do what my last girlfriend did and learn the controls and have 5 of her own characters by the time we were done with that game.

Okay before I answer to this trainwreck of an argument (Getting to that in a moment) let me ask you something: How does any of this adversely effect you in particular?

Right, with that out of the way, one thing stuck out to me here "If they can't be bothered to learn the basics" Well, isn't that exactly what this is? Giving you the basic elements of the game and letting your friend pick it up at a relaxed pace? I'm not here to argue that "Dumbing down a game" and "Making it more accessible" can't be synonymous in certain circumstances, but the fact that this statement in particular is self contradicting, and it gives the impression that you're only arguing for the purpose of being a contrarian. You say people have no business playing a game if they are unwilling to learn it, when this is exactly what it is. Also, comparing basketball to a videogame is comparing an apple to an orange, so don't do that, they don't work the same way.

Gearbox reveals aim assist skill and then proceeds to shoot themselves in the foot.

At least they had the common sense to NOT name it the girlfriend skill tree in the game itself.

It was a a stupid thing to say. Is it the end of the world? No. People need to stop backing this sexist remark, tell him to think twice before opening his mouth, and give non-gamer gameplay options a name that doesn't signal out one sex.

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