...okay, that's a lie, otherwise why would you be here?
Now, I've only ever played with the first Borderlands game. I didn't enjoy it. Why? Mostly due to the fact that it was essentially Fallout 3 in Space something which I could actually do, thanks. However, what Gearbox has done here is beyond detestable. The fact that Randy Pitchford and the rest of his development team have not been dropped into the fiery pits of hell by SEGA is offensive.
The article that provides the basis for this entire rant talks about Gearbox using their funding for various other properties to fund Borderlands and its sequel, Borderlands 2 (and Duke Nukem Forever, as well) Y'know, the only games that anyone cares to remember Gearbox for. One of those games happened to be Aliens: Colonial Marines. So, basically, what happened is, Randy Pitchford and the one hundred and eighty people working under him took funding for a game THAT COULD HAVE ACTUALLY BEEN REALLY, REALLY GOOD and gave it to Fallout 3 in Space. And I can really even get beyond that, in all honesty. I don't hate the Borderlands series, and perhaps I could have even gotten into it with a later installment. Now? I'm not going to bother. No Borderlands, no more Aliens games, no more Duke Nukem. As long as any of those happen to have Gearbox Software stamped on them, I will never so much as touch them.
I'd call it a commonplace practice, because I'm sure Gearbox isn't the only company worthy of such scorn, but this goes beyond that. Borderlands and Borderlands 2 are games that used SEGA funding that are not SEGA games, so SEGA didn't get a single cent of that money. Nor from Duke Nukem Forever. So essentially, they were robbed blind. So I can't blame SEGA for releasing Colonial Marines, they were just attempting to make back the money that Gearbox apparently embezzled from them over six years! Six years they were dragged around and screwed over by Randy Pitchford and his team so they could make their little pet project.
The article goes on to quote Jim Sterling (Esteemed Game Critic and the Sexiest Man Alive) concerning his insider sources:
"Now here is the company that should get most of the blame: Gearbox Software and Randy Pitchford. Gearbox stole from SEGA, they robbed us, lied to us about the game, and tried to get another company to make the game instead. Let's see where the funding went shall we? Everyone said the game went to both Borderlands games, but Duke Nukem Forever gets a mention as well, but it's pushed out of the spotlight, because people want to forget about that game, and I don't blame them! Duke Nukem Forever had a big impact on Aliens: Colonial Marines as well."
"It clearly shows that Pitchford and Gearbox wanted to focus heavily on Duke Nukem Forever, but how would they get the money to hire some of the 3D Realms team and even buy the intellectual property? Sure, they made a lot from Borderlands, but guess where they got the money to fund Borderlands in the first place? Yup, SEGA."
"So Gearbox essentially lied to SEGA, mishandled funds, broke agreements and contractual obligations to work on other projects, didn't want to work on a game they were contractually obligated to work on and gave it to another team, poor organization and direction on ACM, took on too many projects from different companies at once, and other things that we may not even know about. Hell, part of me believes that Gearbox wanted this thing delayed as much as possible so they can get more funding money to embezzle from SEGA."
I think that pretty much says it all. And I wouldn't be one to demonize just one man and throw him under the bus, but as Randy Pitchford is not only the head but the voice of Gearbox (as well as one of the people who directly deals with SEGA), the finger points to him. Not only did he steal from SEGA, but he outright lied to the gaming community at large for eleven minutes. Showing us a "demo" that is so stripped down in the actual game that people should be calling for the collective head of Gearbox. And I'm not above joining them in that crusade at this point.
With Colonial Marines, Gearbox hasn't just failed on a production level, but on an ethical level as well. They worked on a project they apparently didn't care nearly as much as Pitchford insisted that they did so they could get more funding to be used elsewhere. On their projects that were their real passion. And apparently (though its only rumor), SEGA knows about this all but can't do any of it due to some contractual red tape. So, not only has Gearbox stolen money, lied to both a publisher and the consumers at large, and effectively screwed everyone over for their own gains, but they're getting away with it.
They didn't care about this project. All the detail and care given to the game's visuals is now even more meaningless. Because it's just an incredible thin shell over an egg made out of complete indifference and malice. You, Randy Pitchford, didn't care about trying to "make a true sequel to the film in video game form". You allowed the game to languish in development hell for six years while you stole money to fund projects that SEGA would see no return on, while you cheated by making an incredibly piss-poor game after dragging your feet for so long, and you lied to not only SEGA, but to your consume base. The fact that you have not been thrown out on your rear end is just baffling and offensive. On the extremely miniscule (read: no chance in Hell) chance that anyone from SEGA might happen upon this, I implore you to tell the charlatan to pack his bags so that he can't cause any more harm to the human race. Please.
But as they won't, I'll just allow my money to do the talking. They've not only failed to produce a game that I would enjoy, but they outright lied to me, and to everyone who saw that E3 trailer and thought that the game was going to be nothing short of spectacular. And they're getting away with all of it. ALL OF IT! I played sixty dollars for that game. I pre-ordered it, and I know so many other people who did. Who thought this was going to be something worth that pre-order. But it was more than just being lied to, we were all cheated. And while I'm not one to defend the big company publishers, SEGA's only real crime in this is not putting the gun to Gearbox's head and pulling the trigger. While I didn't give them any grief in the review (at least not to my recollection), I take back any that might have been implied.
To quote a man with a fancy hat, in the end, "EVIL WINS!", because there is nothing - and I mean NOTHING - to else to name this. I would implore everyone to boycott Gearbox. To make sure that they never get to allow another game to go the way of Colonial Marines. But, as it stands now, they win. I have a sincere wish that Borderlands 3 will bomb right into the ground, Gearbox will eventually have its doors closed and Randy Pitchford made to pay for his crimes against the consumers, SEGA, and humanity at large. Until that day comes (or the morphine I've taken to keep from completely losing my mind wears off), I'll allow Bill Paxton to play me out: