More Games As A Service Should Take a Page Out of Borderlands 3’s Book

borderlands 3 events

Gearbox recently released the crossplay update for Borderlands 3, which includes a whole heck of a lot more than just crossplay. For instance, Borderlands 3 is a live game, or a “Games As A Service,” otherwise known as GaaS, and typically with live games, you’ll have a few seasonal or holiday events throughout the year. These events are there to help change things up throughout the game and provide incentive to play year-round. However, what this inevitably leads to is the “Fear of Missing Out” (FOMO), because if you don’t continuously play all year, then you’ll end up missing out on some super cool content, or some cosmetics, or some super cool loot. What Borderlands 3 has now implemented is the option to turn these events on and off, which allows players to play them at any time, regardless of the season. So, how can other games learn from this?

FOMO

It seems that live games have become the norm in the video game market, which isn’t automatically a bad thing, but for many, it leads to quite a stressful load of too many battle passes, seasons, and events, to balance all at once. Between Call of Duty, Fortnite, and Destiny 2, that’s three separate minimum-100 tier season passes to complete, over 100 seasonal challenges to complete, and content to play through for each game, and all within 3-4 months. This means that if you want to play each of these games for the same amount of time, you’ll only be able to play each game for about a month without playing any other games. Devoting a month of my time to a single game does not seem in any way, shape, or form appealing to me at all. Yes, I know that I almost exclusively play Destiny 2, but that’s different – if you play Destiny, you play Destiny for life, and that’s it. Toss Borderlands 3 into the mix and you’ve got even less time to play each game. Now, imagine if you wanted to play all four of these games during the winter holiday season. Impossible. However, with Borderlands 3, you can now experience whatever holiday event that Gearbox has cooked up in the past (or future), and play whenever you want. Now, I understand that Borderlands 3 is a much different type of live game, compared to Destiny 2, Call of Duty, and Fortnite. I understand that Destiny probably couldn’t do this….or or could it? Why can’t we just have an event exclusive playlist that has these event exclusive activities (EAZ, Infinite Forest, SRL????) in a completely separate playlist, so if players wanted to play those activities throughout the year, they could? Sure, okay, maybe that wouldn’t really work for Destiny, but what about Call of Duty? Fortnite? I mean, Fortnite went from having Solo, Duo, and Squad playlists to having a ton of them now, so why can’t we just have a playlist of various holiday game modes? I feel like that would pretty much eliminate quite a bit of FOMO from most, if not all, of these live games.

Bah Humbug!

I think there’s also something to say about those who don’t particularly get in the festive – or seasonal – spirit, those who don’t want to deal with all the fancy, bright, and colorful additions to these games. While I can’t imagine why you wouldn’t want to experience these fantastic seasonal events – unless you’re a true Ebenezer Scrooge – I’m sure that there are those that are just so negative that they get upset whenever a new seasonal event is added into these games (Shame on you!). The ability to now turn these events on and off at will, definitely takes a step to please everyone, regardless of seasonal spirit and level of joy. For those that want to enjoy the event for about a week, and then are immediately over it, this is also an important feature that allows those players to experience the events for just the perfect amount of time that they would like, and then go back to playing the game how they want to play it.

I think that Gearbox is definitely on the right track to eliminating any sort of FOMO and making Borderlands 3 appealing to all players, and I hope that this feature pushes other developers to take a page out of Gearbox’s book and inspires them to reevaluate how they approach seasonal events in the future. Borderlands 3 is in a pretty good place right now, so if you are a fan of the series, and haven’t picked it up yet, then what are you waiting for?

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