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Borderlands 3 deleted scene makes a huge story moment hit that much harder

Borderlands 3
(Image credit: Gearbox)

Ahead of the release of the Borderlands 3 Director's Cut add-on – now coming later this month after weather-related delays – Gearbox unveiled a deleted scene tied to a crucial and hard-hitting story moment. 

Spoilers for the Borderlands 3 campaign ahead. 

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The studio shared a chunk of the scene on Twitter, and while it's fully voiced, the art is a simple storyboard. It picks up in the second half of the game immediately after the death of Maya the Siren. Once you make your way back to Sanctuary, you and Ava – Maya's close friend and pseudo-apprentice – break the bad news to the crew. Ava is the star of this deleted scene, with her grief on full display through some heavy new dialogue. Altogether, this gives Maya's death much more weight

Lead writer Sam Winkler discussed the deleted scene in a lengthy blog post (opens in new tab) which also goes deep on Siren lore. He explained that Maya's death "was built into the plot of Borderlands 3 very early on," partly as a way to reinforce the terror and power of the Calypsos' ability to steal Siren energy. The sequence where Lilith loses her powers was written in later and dramatically altered her role in the story, "and by then the Maya story beat was solidly locked in," he says. 

"Ava is young, but she has a lot of experience feeling lost and alone," Winkler says of the aftermath of Maya's death. "Maya is the closest she's gotten to having a family. After the initial shock is gone, her first reaction is anger – at Maya for being gone, at Lilith for trying to help, at herself for believing things could get better. Meanwhile, Lilith is still grappling with her own idea of herself as a leader. She's lost her powers and now a close friend. As the leader, she takes the weight of responsibility on her own shoulders, even though Maya expressly asked her to stay on the ship." 

The Director's Cut of Borderlands 3 will add many other long-lost details like this animatic scene, alongside new content including another raid boss and a full-fat murder-mystery arc.  

The cast of the Borderlands movie continues to grow, with Edgar Ramirez now confirmed for the role of Atlas.

Austin freelanced for the likes of PC Gamer, Eurogamer, IGN, Sports Illustrated, and more while finishing his journalism degree, and he's been with GamesRadar+ since 2019. They've yet to realize that his position as a staff writer is just a cover up for his career-spanning Destiny column, and he's kept the ruse going with a focus on news and the occasional feature.