The Borderlands series has always enjoyed making references or poking fun at other game franchises. Borderlands 3 is no exception, ranging from insulting Destiny’s engrams to praising Doom’s weapons. There’s even a reference to one of the more notable missions from its predecessor, Borderlands 2. Some of these references are even tied to guns, like the Mario-themed Compressing Superball.
A legendary Maliwan pistol, the Compressing Superball cannot switch elements like most of the guns made by the company–it solely fires incendiary bullets. Instead of the laserbeam, tri-shot, or rapid-fire bullets seen on other Maliwan guns, the Compressing Superball shoots a giant fireball that explodes on impact and deals splash damage.
The description for the gun reads “Flower power,” which is most likely in reference to the Super Mario Bros. series, where main protagonist Mario can gain the superpower to shoot fireballs out of his hands after consuming a fire flower. This isn’t the first Super Mario Bros. reference seen in the Borderlands franchise. The very first game included an Achievement/Trophy called “My Brother is an Italian Plumber” that you earn by killing an enemy by inflicting damage on them by jumping on their head.
Though the effect the Compressing Superball creates is cool-looking, the gun isn’t actually all that good. After the initial area of Pandora, you begin encountering a lot more enemies that wear shields or armor–increasing the value of shock and corrosive weapons while decreasing the utility of incendiary. Also, as a Maliwan gun, the Compressing Superball’s shot isn’t all that strong, which doesn’t pair very well with its slow fire rate.
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Source: Game Spot Mashup