Tiny Tina Wonderlands is the best game from Gearbox Software. Built on the studio’s successful Borderlands formula, the experience adds a whimsical element to familiar looter-shooter adventures and delivers so much firepower to your fingers that you’ll think you wore the Infinity Gauntlet. Full of slyness and always trying to make you laugh, Wonderlands hits with distinct charm and meticulous handling of its characters and world, taking both of you on a journey I didn’t want to end.
From the start of the game, we learn that Borderlands mainstay Tiny Tina has invited some of her friends over to play a tabletop game called Bunker and Badass, which is essentially a Borderlands version of Dungeons & Dragons. Tina is the game’s dungeon master, and you’re the party’s newest recruit – the hero of your design, deep class proficiencies and facial features to detail.
Playful chemistry is immediately established between Tina and her friends, each bringing a sense of humor and sensibility that they know each other well. Tina is once again brilliantly brought to life by Ashley Burch, who plays well with the reckless adventure qualities of Captain Valentine (Andy Samberg), the strict rule-driven guidance of Robot Fret (Wanda Sykes), and the dishonest and despicable with qualities. Dragon Lord (Will Arnett). These powerful personalities often entertain and make the search an absolute blast, as you never know how they will react to a situation. The story jumps between Tina and her teammates sitting at a board game table to discuss the next chapter in the adventure, and your character dreams of it and travels across that landscape, a point where the player is given control. . This story flow works incredibly well and is a great way to book chapters and hand the next event.
Tina has the greatest influence on the quest and can use her god-like powers to change it at any time. With her imagination, she can transform an ordinary forest into a magical mushroom kingdom – a stunning visual transformation that you see as you run through the environment. Your party members also influence the world and can offer your character something to do to overcome a challenge, such as Valentine romancing to open a drawbridge or the team collectively finding out. Here’s how to remove ponytail curls from a board. The situations are often zany, well written, and fun to watch until the end.
Missions captivate you with humorous setups and shine in battle, giving you good reasons to set free whatever you have in your arsenal. The plethora of Borderlands is alive and well in terms of weapons in Wonderlands and has been improved upon with a wider selection of spells. The gunplay is highly polished and feels like Borderlands, but packs more punch through fantasy elements. For example, in the fight against the Land Shark, I used to alternate between a crossbow that fired explosives and an acid gun that juggled enemies together in a gooey spray. My pet wyvern opened fire on these enemies as I swung across the battlefield, and I added elemental chaos to the mix by wielding lightning crows with my fingers. If an opponent somehow survives this frenzied attack, I can smash them with a big hammer that creates an earthquake. You start the game off pretty powerful and reach the point of being a ridiculous war machine at midpoint with class blending enabled – a proposition that’s downright terrifying.
Enemy drops of loot can completely change the approach to loadouts and combat. Most of the weapons are surprisingly unique, mixing fantasy tropes with modern weapons to create something to watch. The devastation caused by rare weapons gives a lot of incentive to scour the environment to hide and do side activities. I also enjoyed diving into smaller wave-based dungeons to earn items that reveal even bigger mysteries. Thanks to smooth platforming mechanics and cleverly hidden areas, exploring the world is good fun. There’s plenty to keep you busy, including story-rich side missions that grow up with you and never get too easy, and a great post-game dungeon called the Chaos Chamber that pops up every time you visit. Changes when entered. It’s a great way to grind out endless Gauntlet levels and unlock myth ranks.
Borderlands’ DNA is recognizable in most of Wonderlands, except for Overworld, which bears more resemblance to an older Final Fantasy game. The attitude changes from first person to isometric when you enter it, and you can no longer engage in combat. Overworld removes most of the downtime experienced in Borderlands games. You move quickly between areas and can engage in any number of activities within seconds. Overworld holds many secrets, just as much humor, and does an excellent job of charting progress, so you know what you’ve accomplished and still need to clean up.
The cooperative game of Wonderlands couldn’t get any better, providing an experience where everyone gets an equal footing on the battlefield. Like in Borderlands 3, a level 5 player will face a level 5 enemy, while that same enemy reads level 20 to a level 20 player – meaning you’ll need to grind for XP or power levels to play with friends. is not needed. Players can also set how the loot is divided, allowing everyone to receive their drops or share it. Crossplay and split-screen are both offered, but I didn’t have a chance to check either during my review.
Wonderlands is upbeat and fun from start to finish, providing a rewarding adventure full of goofy characters, imaginative bosses, and a great sense of ownership over your character through it all. Even under the leadership of one of Borderlands’ most loved characters, the experience feels like the beginning of something new: a rare spinout from an existing series that deserves even greater spotlight. As someone who has played a lot of Dungeons & Dragons, how many times has Wonderlands reminded me of a 20-sided die with friends. It’s a love letter to friends who enjoy on-the-spot creativity and each other’s company in a fantasy world.