The Mad Moxxi’s Underdome Riot DLC for Borderlands has been released a while ago, but since the fourth DLC is already in development, I decided to make a review for each DLC Borderlands already has. In short: Mad Moxxi’s Underdome Riot consist of three small 5 round tournaments and three large 20 round tournaments. Smaller tournaments take about 30 minutes each to complete while the bigger tournaments requires hours of gameplay.
The tournament structure is the same in all tournaments. It consist of 5 waves of enemies ending in the “Boss Wave” where you face one of the bosses from the main story of Borderlands with few sidekicks. Between each wave, there is a supply drop of health and ammo so you can prepare for the next wave and after the boss wave, you’ll receive some goodies from Moxxi in the middle of the arena. The items for me has been mostly useless during my first playthrough, but the items tend to be more better at the second playtrough. Moxxi also adds some flavor to the waves in the form of modifiers. These modifiers range widely and include bonuses such as stronger specific gun type or stronger and quicker enemies etc. While these modifiers make the waves more interesting, these waves still just shooting enemies and hoping for a good loot after the boss wave.
If you happen to die in the Underdome, you’ll go to the penalty box for the rest of the wave or until all of your team members are dead. The penalty box is at the top of the map and you can still shoot enemies, but your movement is restricted to the box. If all team members die, you are forced to start back one round earlier; you die in round 8 wave 3, you’ll start at round 7 wave 1. It’s a little time consuming, but the gameplay still continues.
There are benefits some benefits for compliting the tournaments. You receive a skill point if you pass all three smaller tournaments in the game so if you play two playthroughs, you’ll receive two skill points. The later tournaments only unlock some achievements and are way more challenging, but doable nevertheless. They just take time. The complaint here is: who has time to play about four hours straight without checkpoints of any sort? Especially since there is not much variety in the waves. One additional benefit of the Underdome is that you have a bank here to store your items. If you have lots of guns you’re fond of and don’t wish to sell them. Just deposit them to the bank.
The Mad Moxxi’s Underdome Riot is all about shooting enemies with small variety. It can be fun, I liked it in general, but the other DLC packages have missions and variety in the landscape if you’re looking for that kind of expansions of Borderlands. Still, it is a nice addition to the game if you like the FPS part of Borderlands.