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Tales from the Borderlands: Episode 4 - Escape Plan Bravo
Score: 80%
Publisher: Telltale Games
Developer: Telltale Games
Media: Download/1
Players: 1
Genre: Adventure


Penultimate episodes are tricky to nail, and Telltale Games, as proficient as they are as a development house, has had trouble with them lately. The second-to-last episode of Game of Thrones, while interesting and game-changing, is a total mess in terms of pacing and character development. I wouldn’t say that’s entirely true about Tales from the Borderlands: Episode 4 – Escape Plan Bravo, but I will say this much: when the credits roll, you won’t feel like too much has happened.

Space Race:

Episode 3 - Catch a Ride ended pretty sourly for Rhys, Fiona, and the gang. They’ve succeeded at activating Gortys, finding a way to make her mobile, and sussing out a new lead on the Vault of the Traveler. But the car chase that ended the episode resulted in Athena’s capture by Brick and Mordecai (setting up the events of Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel!) and, in my case, the incapacitated Vaughn in the care of former Atlas scientist Cassius Leclemaine. And to make matters worse, their lives are in the hands of Vallory, a sassy, murderous Pandoran gang lord. And she isn’t too happy with the fact that her son August tried to con her out of the ten million dollar deal that opened this whole can of worms to begin with. So she wants the Vault for herself, and she's of a mind to force you to do all the dirty work involved. When it’s discovered that the next Gortys piece is in Handsome Jack’s office on Helios, there’s no discussing it: our heroes (and the jerks using them) must take to the outer space Hyperion base and nab it. Of course, this is easier said than done: Rhys is essentially Helios’ "undesirable number one," and CEO Hugo Vasquez is somewhere in the wastelands with a shotgun hole in his chest. But with the help of Scooter and (surprisingly) Finch and Kroger, they just might make it.

Let me finish this by saying that something happens in the first act of Tales from the Borderlands: Episode 4 – Escape Plan Bravo. Without saying anything further about this incident, allow me to simply state that I will never, ever forgive Telltale if this event sticks. One part of this is because of how it’s handled and the other part is because of oh my goodness how could you do this?! But I digress.

Helios Uber Alles!:

The Handsome Jack construct living in Rhys’ cybernetics has a great deal of screen time, regardless of whether or not you’ve been palling around with him during his…ahem…"residency." There’s a reason he’s living there, and you’d better believe the guy has an ulterior motive, but there are dangerous consequences for this forced symbiosis. The most immediate threat is to his partnership with Fiona and Sasha, who have very good reasons to hate all things Hyperion, much less the psychopath who ruined countless Pandoran lives over the course of Borderlands 2. But tyrannical runtime in the noggin aside, they have a mission to complete, and there’s no room for negotiation. The events that transpire aboard Helios are invariably bizarre, and spoiling any of it would just be wrong. I will grant one superlative, however: it’s got what’s easily the weirdest action sequence in any game I’ve played this year.


Tales from the Borderlands: Episode 4 – Escape Plan Bravo is the weakest episode in what has been an extremely strong run for Telltale. It’s not bad, but some pacing issues keep it from rising to the vertiginous heights of its predecessors. Perhaps its worst sin is the fact that though the stakes remain high throughout, there isn’t much movement to the overarching narrative until the final moments. That makes it kind of a strange case, and a somewhat disappointing one at that, but thankfully, it doesn’t tarnish what came before.

-FenixDown, GameVortex Communications
AKA Jon Carlos

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