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    Meet The Five New Playable Characters From "Battleborn"

    More badass heroes from the creators of Borderlands.

    Gearbox Software, the developer behind Borderlands, today unveiled five new characters (of the 25 total playable heroes) from its newest first-person shooter, Battleborn.

    Gearbox Software / Via Battleborn

    Battleborn takes place in a distant future, where an unlikely alliance between different factions fight to protect the universe’s last remaining star from a ~mysterious~ evil. The release of these new characters brings the total number of revealed characters up to 15.

    Here are the 10 characters already released...

    Gearbox Software / Via Battleborn

    Art Director Scott Kester explains the creative vision behind these characters as "Pixar meets Anime."

    ...and here are the five new reveals.

    Gearbox Software / Via Battleborn

    In addition to the four announced at Gamescon 2015, Isic brings the revealed character count to 15. The full character roster is expected during game release on Feb. 9, 2016. More information on playable heroes can be found here.


    Gearbox Software / Via Battleborn

    Exotic weaponry laced with poison, hell yeah! Reminder that a biologically active glove has been fused to her left hand. Also... who else wants a white mohawk now?

    And here are a few sketches of Mellka's badass abilities:

    Gearbox Software / Via Battleborn

    Amanda Christensen, concept artist on Battleborn, told BuzzFeed that the final creation of all heroes required a mutual passion, and an enormous amount of collaboration between artists, designers, programmers, animators, and writers: "For a main character like Mellka, there were several months of cross-departmental iteration on everything from her facial expressions, her gear, how her bio-arm animates to really get her feeling polished. Even her mohawk went through a few revisions!"


    Gearbox Software / Via Battleborn

    Christensen said that Reyna was the first of her designs for Battleborn, and noted that she wanted this character to be bold and aggressive, straying from the typical build of a support character.

    "Giving her thicker thighs and hips was a deliberate choice — I wanted to make her feel powerful and grounded, and also depict an underrepresented body type in an empowering way... She is the 'rock' of any team that she commands, and her character design reflects that."

    As Nicki Minaj raps in "Super Bass," "You're like slicker than the guy with the thing on his eye."


    Gearbox Software / Via Benedict

    Benedict started as a "chicken-headed-Axton-bodied monstrosity of a prototype" thought up by Jett Saret, designer for Battleborn.

    "We came up with the idea that one of his wings had been broken at some point early in his military career and he now has to use a prosthetic to glide and balance the weight of his rocket launcher," Saret said. "And that design choice went on to inform his comically arrogant personality — he is still a badass, wing injury and all."

    And here are a few of the concept sketches for Benedict, Saret’s "rocket jumper chicken man":


    Hopefully there will be a mod for a chicken costume called Eggs ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.


    Gearbox Software / Via Battleborn

    Battleborn game designer Brian Thomas told BuzzFeed, "We didn’t want to put together 25 characters that were mostly the same shape, holding a gun, doing a lot of the same stuff. Some character pitches were born because of the gameplay promise they brought. Other characters were born because of awesome stuff our concept art came up with."

    And here's what Ambra's ultimate ability will look like:


    Unlike the ultimate abilities that heal (like those of typical support characters), Ambra's Extinction Event summons a meteor from the sky that scorches the ground, which not only deals a ton of initial damage, but also damage over time. Feel the burn. 🔥🔥🔥


    Gearbox Software / Via Battleborn

    Regarded as the most nihilistic and terrifying of Battleborn. Your fave could never.

    And here's Isic in gameplay:

    Gearbox Software / Via Battleborn

    When asked what it was like developing characters with their own background story, Christensen said she really wanted to highlight the "thematic experience" that went behind designing each hero: "I like to think of these characters as every awesome action figure you ever wanted to play with as a kid. One of our mantras is that each of these characters could really be the hero of their own game. Twenty-five different heroes with different play styles and backstories might seem extremely daunting, but for us it is a total dream project."

    Watch the new Battleborn trailer here:

    View this video on YouTube / Via Battleborn

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