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Borderlands 3 has multiple Vaults with boss fights, a new endgame Guardian Rank, and movement-boosting Artifacts

Gearbox shared some new Borderlands 3 details during the PC Gaming Show at E3 2019. Creative director Paul Sage explained how the upcoming sequel will expand on Borderlands 2's endgame and answered a few burning questions from the audience. Here are some quick highlights: class mods will give you skill buffs even if you don't have those skills unlocked, you'll explore multiple Vaults with "huge multi-phase boss encounters", new Artifacts will improve movement abilities, and you'll be upgrading your Guardian Rank instead of Badass Rank to earn skills and skins. 

Sage also discussed some other aspects of loot in more detail. "Grenades are one of my favorite things that we don't get to talk about a lot," he said. "In the past we had grenades with one thing, they can bounce, stick to things. This time we're combining all of those things. The other day I threw a grenade that bounced, it would stick, it would explode, and it would fire guns as it was going. We have a ton of different grenades." Shields will feature similarly wacky modifier combinations, Sage said, like a shield that provides extra cover when you crouch. 

Regarding the new Artifact gear, Sage said: "When we were playing with [the new movement options], we'd like slide into a barrel and it would explode, so we were like 'that's kind of fun.' So why don't we do something like that? Our Artifacts add certain things to movement. You can slide faster, every time you slide there's an explosion."

Perhaps most importantly, Sage shared a little more about Borderlands 3's endgame. "We have a thing called the Guardian system," he explained. "Those who played Borderlands before may remember Badass Ranks, kind of an infinite progression system that added to your stats. We've doubled down on that. We have Guardian Rank, but on top of that infinite progression, it has skills and different skins that you can open up as you go through. The cool thing about that is every character on your account gets the benefits of Guardian Rank."  

The PC Gaming Show's Borderlands 3 slot concluded with a rapid-fire Q&A. Here's everything new that was asked and what Sage had to say. 

  • Can I pet the gun? "I'm not here to judge what you do with your guns."
  • Is Maya's new companion a Siren? "People are asking the right questions."
  • What's the level cap at launch? "50." 
  • Will there be duels? "Yes." 
  • Other kinds of PVP? "Yes and no."