An interesting tidbit about the universe that many players likely forgot in the first place: Pandora is not “the Borderlands,” it is merely one planet (a notoriously deadly one, mind you) in an area of space referred to as such. This hasn’t much mattered in other games, as Pandora has become synonymous with that given every game has taken place on or near Pandora.
However, with Borderlands 3, we finally get to see a sample of the other planets in the Borderlands and adventure in their unique locales.
Borderlands 3: How Many Planets Are There?
There are three, besides Pandora, leaving us with a total of four.
The game starts, of course, on the planet of Pandora as all the games have, but your time on Pandora is fairly rote, and quickly the game shuffles you on to the Sanctuary III before you end up on the next world: Promethea.
Promethea is an interesting war-torn urban environment, unique in the series. The closest the game has come to that before is Old Haven from the first game, which still had a bit of a rural feel to it. It’s fitting this is the first place you go to after leaving Pandora, as it’s one of the most frequently mentioned in the franchise. It is Roland’s (the first game’s Soldier class) home planet and serves as the primary home base of the Atlas Corporation, whose Crimson Lance soldiers were the primary antagonists of the first game, and whose remnants spawned the Crimson Raiders (your own allied faction).
Still, aside from some lengthy and amusing side quests, you are quickly shuffled from there to Athenas, a mountainous, seemingly vaguely Tibetan inspired planet (and the planet which the second game’s playable Siren, Maya, calls her home).
Finally, you end up on EDEN-6, a swampy planet home to one of my personal favorite weapon manufacturers: the Jakobs Corporation. Much like Promethea, it has been repeatedly referenced over the games, but few details were ever known. Gaige, Borderlands 2‘s Mechromancer, hails from what is presumably EDEN-6’s sister planet, EDEN-5.
For now, these are the only planets and serve similar roles to the varied locales of the other games that were just different kinds of wasteland on Pandora, being the hubs of multiple quests and exploration events.