Sir Hammerlock’s Big Game Hunt DLC Review

Borderlands 2 continues to be a gift that keeps on giving. With the strong community based around the highly expansive shooter, the game has recently had its shelf life expanded by in-game events and rewards, but this week saw the release of the next big addition to the game: the Sir Hammerlock’s Big Game Hunt DLC. How well does the expansion do to deliver a fresh experience to the game?

Well… it sorta falls flat, but that doesn’t mean it’s all bad.

Sir Hammerlock’s Big Game Hunt is an expansion to the main Borderlands 2 experience. It is set after the events of the main campaign, so it’s recommended that you wait until you’ve finished the main story. Avoiding spoilers, Sir Hammerlock’s Big Game Hunt follows you out into a brand new location made for the DLC: Aegrus. In Aegrus, you head out to go on a hunting trip with the titular Sir Hammerlock, a secondary character from the Borderlands 2 campaign. Once you get there though, you soon discover that things are not quite as they seem, and a devious (albeit hilariously anxious) antagonist shows their face.

Whereas the first DLC for the game, Captain Scarlett and Her Pirate’s Booty remains the strongest overall, and the second, Mr. Torgue’s Campaign of Carnage offered enough of a gameplay twist showered in humour, Sir Hammerlock’s Big Game Hunt feels like a cheap, quick thrill.

That isn’t to say that it’s one to miss entirely, for the writing continues to be hilarious and there are still some strong gameplay editions, but it just feels like it’s over in a heartbeat. Part of the problem is that players who have ranked up as far as they can go will get no real sense of achievement from completing the DLC. There are only three uninspired achievements to strive for, and it feels a lot shorter than either of the other DLCs.

There are some additions to the gameplay to mix it up a little. There are a bunch of new enemies including Savages and Witch Doctors, where the latter offers a fairly strong challenge. With masses of hit points and the ability to aid their allies and stunt your progress, Witch Doctors are definitely the enemies to watch out for. There are a bunch of other enemies in the DLC as well, such as Scaylions, who are like giant scorpions, and Drifters, which are like giant spiders.

There is also the inclusion of a new vehicle in the DLC: the Fan-Boat. The Fan-Boat is a hovercraft-type vehicle, and it does well to move around, but it feels like a superfluous addition to the game, not necessarily implemented well enough for progression or entertainment, unlike, say, the sand skiff from the Captain Scarlett and Her Pirate’s Booty DLC.

In the grand scheme of everything however, Sir Hammerlock’s Big Game Hunt is a placeholder DLC at best. Compared to other games and their DLC add-ons, it may appear to be quite rich in content and is a worthy expansion, but when you compare it to the wonderful Captain Scarlett and Her Pirate’s Booty, you can’t help but wish for more.

The reception of this DLC might sing a different tune soon, however, for Gearbox have finally announced that they will be increasing the level cap from the current level 50. This is a very good thing as it means that there is much more reason to go out and explore every nook and cranny of the expansive worlds in Borderlands 2, finding hidden secrets, even more guns, and new locations to build up your character’s level and skills.

If you already have the Season Pass for Borderlands 2 then Sir Hammerlock’s Big Game Hunt is worth a download. It doesn’t cost you anything, and it will still be a fast and funny addition to your current experience. If you don’t have the Season Pass, then I’d suggest waiting for it to go on sale unless you are married to the idea of picking up the DLC right now. It just feels lacklustre and superfluous compared to the better quality DLCs that Borderlands 2 have already delivered. There is one more planned DLC on the horizon for Borderlands 2, and here’s hoping that it will be more towards Captain Scarlett and Her Pirate’s Booty than this.

As a DLC, it is more than competent, as a Borderlands 2 DLC, it leaves much to be desired. It’s over in a flash, but at least it’ll provoke enough laughter that you could never get mad at it. Far from a trophy of a DLC that you’d want to hang on your wall, but enough for you not to just throw in the trash.

Sir Hammerlock’s Big Game Hunt is DLC available for Borderlands 2. It can be downloaded now for PC, PS3 or Xbox 360 versions of the game. The version reviewed was on the Xbox 360.

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