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Tiny Tina’s Assault on Dragon Keep Review: A Wonderlands One-Shot Adventure

Promotional artwork for Tiny Tina's Assault on Dragon Keep featuring Tiny Tina holding an axe. Used as the header image for this review.

Credit: 2K Games

This Tiny Tina’s Assault on Dragon Keep review is based on our experience of playing the PS4 version on PS5.

Another month, another PlayStation Plus freebie. And Sony has offered up a repackaged, nine-year old DLC from Borderlands 2. That’s because Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands is almost upon us. It launches on 25th March and will build on the foundations laid by this mini-campaign. Now dubbed as “A Wonderlands One-Shot Adventure”, Tiny Tina’s Assault on Dragon Keep provides familiar Borderlands carnage with a fun fantasy twist. It’s a brief and dated affair, but one worth experiencing for fans of the series who might’ve missed it the first time.

Tiny Tina’s Assault on Dragon Keep review – Gameplay

As you’d expect, Tiny Tina’s Assault on Dragon Keep has more in common with 2012’s Borderlands 2 than its almost three-year-old sequel. But Borderlands 3 hardly revolutionised the franchise, so casual players could easily mistake it for an extension of that game. Admittedly, I never played this add-on when it was initially released – although I adored Borderlands 2. I had a blast with it on PS3. All these years later, however, its nuts-and-bolts gameplay has grown tired.

It just doesn’t feel as responsive as it once did. The guns (of which there are many) lack oomph compared to modern shooters. And while its still enjoyable to take on hordes of weird and wonderful enemies, Borderlands‘ appeal of pointing and continuously shooting until no-one’s left has worn thin. Minimal thought need go into enemy encounters. As long as you’re sufficiently levelled and equipped with some decent weapons you’ll get through them just fine. Of course, you’ll come across plenty of baddies with lots of health. But few are powerful or challenging – it’s merely a case of chipping away at them while casually avoiding their attacks. Even the game’s final boss offers little meaningful difficulty aside from a hefty life gauge and its various rinse-and-repeat forms.

As ever, though, blasting through the Borderlands skill tree is satisfying. Just as I had in 2012, I opted for the Gunzerker class. Abilities are game-changing and add to the feeling of near-invincibility. Thankfully, two skill points are rewarded per level to account for Assault on Dragon Keep‘s brief runtime. That means you’ll be pretty much maxed-out by the time you’re done.

Featured in this review, characters fighting in Tiny Tina's Assault on Dragon Keep.
Credit: 2K Games

Setting and story

Imagine Skyrim but in the Borderlands universe. That’s Assault on Dragon Keep. It’s something different from a series that’s been around for more than a decade. Gone are the psychos, in are the skeletons. You’ll fight dragons, golems, sorcerers, and paladins, too. It’s also packed full of genre tropes so you don’t forget where you are. Magic, spooky forests, orcs, castles – you name it, Assault on Dragon Keep has it.

Story-wise, this one-shot adventure is cooked up by Tiny Tina as part of the Bunkers and Badasses tabletop role-playing game (the Borderlands version of Dungeons & Dragons). As mentioned – it’s short. From start to finish (including the odd side quest), this will take you 4-5 hours to complete. Cameo appearances from familiar characters keep the narrative moving, even if it isn’t particularly memorable. And Tiny Tina’s sudden decisions to change the course of the story make for funny surprises along the way. With that being said, the trademark Borderlands humour feels obnoxiously 2009. This was my primary complaint about Borderlands 3, where I found most of the characters to be unlikeable and irritating as a result. Sadly, Assault on Dragon Keep suffers from the same problem.

Featuring in this review, a character in Tiny Tina's Assault on Dragon Keep fights a fire-breathing dragon.
Credit: 2K Games

Tiny Tina’s Assault on Dragon Keep review – Verdict

Tiny Tina’s Assault on Dragon Keep: A Wonderlands One-Shot Adventure is an action-packed few hours that’s showing its age. But if you’re a Borderlands fan and didn’t check it out nine years ago, you probably won’t be disappointed. Its fantasy setting has just enough legs to carry it through to its conclusion, although I question how many players will be interested in a full game’s worth of this stuff next month. It’s not without its charm and there are certainly enjoyable moments to be had. However, it highlights that Borderlands is in need of something more than a setting switch to bring it into the 2020s.

Overall Rating: 6.5/10

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Joe Harby

About Author

Joe is one of the editors and founders of Downtime Bros and an accredited critic. He has more than a decade of experience in journalism and communications. He is passionate about everything in the worlds of gaming, movies, and TV, as demonstrated by the countless words he has written about them. He is overly proud of his Bloodborne platinum trophy and plays too much Call of Duty. Follow him on Twitter and check out his reviews on OpenCritic.

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