Fans of Gearbox Software's Borderlands series of games will be happy to know that the release of Borderlands 3 seems imminent. Randy Pitchford, CEO of Gearbox, was part of a panel discussion at the Game Developers Conference and used his time in the spotlight to show off the new technology the company is using in the development of Borderlands 3.

Increased power from Unreal Engine

The new Unreal Engine 4 is a streamlined and upgraded version of the game creation software. It boasts improved tools, flexibility, power and performance. Placing emphasis on creativity, the software now gives developers, even more, freedom to develop unreal and enticing worlds.

With real-time rendering and the ability to splice together cross-hatching and shadows, players are in for a more immersive adventure than ever before.

Pitchford's tech swagger

Randy Pitchford was eager to show off some of their new tech capabilities, while at the same time stressing that the preview footage is not from Borderlands 3. This may just be a classic case of misdirection in order to leave fans reeling with anticipation for an official launch.

Maintaining consistency with the previous games, the cartoon-style outline has been pushed even further to create a unique non-realistic art effect. The result is a beautiful blend of darker outlines that shift in weight, highlighted edges, and more detailed textures to set different objects apart on the various layers.

What's so special

At first, the audience was shown random characters and shapes, but later complex scenes that already looked game-ready were revealed. While the footage was running, Pitchford was able to manipulate special effects and lighting in real time to show developers the impressive power of Unreal Engine 4.

Finally, Pitchford detailed Gearbox's new approach, highlighting some key upgrade plans and announcing the heavyweight developers who will be in charge of creating the new Borderlands world.

Borderlands first entered the gaming world in 2009, followed by a sequel in 2012. The game proved to be popular enough to warrant a third installment, Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel, in 2014. Various spin-offs and episodic editions have also been released since 2014.

Although there is still no official release date for Borderlands 3, we know that Gearbox is very excited about their new product, as evidenced by their enthusiastic display at GDC 2017.