All aboard the Slaughterstar 3000 (Bugs, feedback, suggestions)

Before I get into the main bugs that led me to create this post, here are a few suggestions to make the Circle of Slaughter more enjoyable:

1: Let us save&quit inbetween rounds without losing the entire quest. The Circle of Slaughter in Borderlands 3 is a lengthy ordeal and a single run through all of the 5 rounds can take you upwards of an hour, even more so if you maybe fail a round or two. Making it so you have to complete them all in one go doesn’t really achieve anything other than make it tedious, especially for players who have only limited playtime or are getting tired. Being tired and failing a round repeatedly feels bad and having to decide if you just wanna quit for the time being and lose out on an hour of hard-fought progress or power through it even though you’d rather quit for the day feels even worse. Mind you, in previous installments of the franchise, each round actually was its own quest and you could indeed pause inbetween those.
2: Remove the Jetpack troopers. Not because they are particularily annoying or anything but because they can end up stuck outside the map, making it impossible for you to complete the wave.
3: The rewards really could be a little better. Like, a chest of fairly generic loot and 50k dollars is really nothing to write home about. Sure, you can get better rewards for completing bonus objectives but still, this quest takes longer and is harder than any of the bossfights in the game and still the best loot you are gonna get is the potential legendary drops from all the badasses in the last two rounds. Why not at least make it so the boss(es) drop some good stuff? After all, you cannot farm them over and over again like the Grave Warden (well, you sort of can but you can’t fight them outside the 5th round so you don’t get 1 kill every 3 minutes) so it’s not gonna be broken if they give you something good for your troubles.
4: Very specific, but can we please cut down on the amount of NOGs in the 3rd Round on the Slaughterstar 3000? There’s only so many of those little buggers throwing shield drones all over the place you can add to a round before a challenging fight turns into a tedious one.

Now, with the suggestions out of the way, this is my Circle of Slaughter experience: My first attempt was rather short because I reset it after failing the 2nd round so I could get different Mayhem modifiers (turns out, if you mustn’t die during a quest, having the modifier that cripples your shields is not really optimal). I did however run into the aforementioned bug where a Jet trooper ended up outside the map, preventing me from finishing a wave. I eventually managed to kill him with a storm front but yeah, doesn’t matter because I re-tried anyway. My second attempt went a lot better and I progressed sort of quickly through the rounds (thank god the circle of slaughter doesn’t have a timer attached to it like the proving grounds), even though the 3rd round took me longer than I am willing to admit (all those bloody NOGs). However, the real weirdness began in the 5th round. My first attempt was fairly normal, I managed to get to the last wave and died because I somehow didn’t notice in time that there was a second massive robot boss on the other side of the arena. Whatever, ■■■■ happens, I retried. That’s when it got weird. Halfway through the second attempt one of the waves started before I actually was done with the current one, leading to me getting swarmed by an unholy amount of super tank Maliwan bots and Heavies. I somehow managed to beat them anyways and arrived at the bosses. And killed them. And didn’t beat the round. I figured there might be another trooper stuck somewhere and searched the entire arena. Nothing. Not a single red dot on the minimap. After at least 15 minutes of looking I had a bit of a mental breakdown (probably the most upset I have ever been playing this game, not even the time the game deleted all items in my bank vault was that bad) and after I recovered from that, I tried again. And the game did again spawn in a wave prematurely, not even only once, but twice. This time I got unlucky and got just swarmed (that, and there were more enemies on the field than the wave was supposed to have) and died. Then, the successful attempt. Again, premature waves. The success consisted in Torgue suddenly announcing that I had made it, halfway through a wave, and that I could go and collect my rewards. I kept clearing the room, that’s when the actual final wave and the bosses spawned in. Eventually I managed to beat them and officially finish my Circle of Slaughter run.

Final Verdict: In my opinion the most challenging content this game has to offer. It makes for a lot of fun, generally speaking, but there are some issues that need adressing, both on a conceptual level and just mechanically. Roughly guessing, this entire run took me at least 3 hours if not more and I think that it could have been at least one hour faster if everything worked how it was supposed to. Long story short, get those bugs fixed, make the whole thing a bit more rewarding and reduce the amount of NOGs in round 3.

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Few suggestions = 1 bullet point?

But yes I would agree. These things take a long time and I get they were sort of designed to be done with a group of players but the game really should save progress between rounds. At the very least put some timer on it before it resets, like 48 hours or something, so that you can take a break or at the very least leave the area and come back.

Also reduce the slam kills to like 3 or just remove that one extra mission. Slam is so bad in M3, you really have to go out of your way to get this one. All the others I was able to get with just a few adjustments to my strategy and positioning, but the slam one is like cancer.

Oh and the extra missions that say “use this weapon”, at the very least drop a blue type of that weapon at the start of the round to ensure the player can at least do the objective. I got a “kill 10 enemies with Tediore weapon” and I have 0 Tediore weapons because they are complete ass. Throw me a bone please.

There’s more to come. I accidentially posted it before I was done and am currently editing to add the rest of my post. It’s gonna be a rather lengthy one.

LOL I thought it was something like that. Or maybe the forum was bugged and your posted was cropped.

There we go, now it’s done.

2 Likes

The flying troopers don’t need to be removed, per say, but there does need to be some kill zone set up where if they fly out of bounds of the map they start taking damage and die. I had this happen to me and screwed up my run because I had to reset the round by jumping into the pit.

Tone down the Nogs I agree. At the very least, limit the number of them on the map at any one time. Then you kill one and it spawns the next, so you’re not fighting a bazillion of them at once.

Better loot, always yes. But I would say this about all the slaughter missions too.

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I’m surprised no one has mentioned the worst part about this ordeal, which is not the nogs, but the shock heavies. I’ve done all the other content in the game now and this is all I have left. I spent more hours than I care to admit the other morning trying it. Since then I got a much stronger loadout and fine tuned my build as Fl4k, and even turned off Mayhem just for this arena, but I went back to try again and the same thing kept happening.

I continue to run into the same issue every time I attempt to finish Slaughterstar, and it’s always in Rounds 2 and 5: the shock heavies, or Storm Chuckers, particularly the badass kind. I can say with all honesty that pretty much every other enemy or challenge in this circle of slaughter is either simple to deal with or at least manageable if I don’t make mistakes, but every time I’ve died, my pet has died and I was unable to get a second wind, it was bc of the badass shock heavies. They fire a triangular shock wire web and if any part of it touches me at any health or shield level I will be downed within a few seconds. The DoT is like one of the broken alien barrel weapons they had to change in the first hotfix, doing as much as 20k damage between instantly dropping up to 10k shields and the DoT taking down up to ~10k health in a matter of seconds. The only sure counterplay to this weapon appears to be the Transformer shield, and the one I have is 13 levels lower than me and has about 6500-8500 less shield capacity than my usual shields. When the badass shock heavies spawn they are almost always alongside 4 or 5 other heavies (ridiculous, truly) as well as badass troopers and/or jetpack troopers, in Round 5 they can appear alongside entire waves of robots, robot dogs, and robot minibosses with even more heavies, and sometimes they appear w nogs and badass nogs. Basically if I go down to a shock heavy, my pet never survives long enough to revive me between the heavy itself and additional highly damaging enemies, and in FFYL I always end up surrounded by heavies w full shields and health and/or needing to reload.

Oh, I should also mention that this rather massive hangar/arena is severely lacking in ammo pickups, and I’ve completely run out of ammo for at least 3 gun types (assault, sniper, shotgun) in the 4th round w no ammo containers left. I needed to scavenge more by picking guns up off the ground for the small amount of ammo and switching to severely suboptimal weapons while in a constant state of retreat for several minutes to just barely finish it.

This is also the only place in the game and all of its content that I’ve played where I’ve been knocked into FFYL without being at dangerously low health or my shields depleted and had no indication whatsoever of what downed me. No DoT affecting me, I saw or heard no projectile, no laser sight, no melee unit, no visual effect, there was no enemy in my line of sight, and when I went into FFYL there were no enemies directly around me. This has happened at least 3 times now, but as far as I can tell it has only happened when shock heavies were at least present on the map. I dont know if theres some damage calculation issue where I was hit w a killer shock DoT and it frontloaded the damage, an enemy attack that isnt showing its visual effects properly, if its an issue of lag even in single player, or if its something else entirely that I just havent noticed, I really don’t know. Regardless, to die and not understand why or be able to identify the source of damage in a shooter is not what you want to see; the deaths don’t feel earned, and theres no way to develop a counter. My situational awareness isnt THAT bad, something is off here. At the very least there are just too many highly damaging enemy units in the arena at once to reasonably keep track of, but a couple times it really seemed like something blew right by the health gating.

What I do know is that Slaughterstar 3000 was never balanced for solo play, and it’s the single most frustrating piece of content I’ve encountered after finishing the campaign and all available side missions, revisiting all areas on Mayhem, reaching level 50 and 100% completion on all planets (except for a red chest from a side quest that can’t be obtained), completing all the proving grounds trials, and completing the other circles of slaughter (even with the rakk that gets stuck outside of the map in the last round of the cistern of slaughter I was eventually able to finish it). I’m gonna try it again with an underleveled transformer shield, but it really feels like Slaughterstar 3000 needs to be toned down, especially for single player.

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Oh yes, the shock heavies could be pretty nasty, too… smiles in transformer shield
I didn’t find ammo too problematic but I’ve mostly been using the One Pump Chump which has a 50% chance of not consuming ammo and the Bekah (and I have a pretty deep AR ammo pool).
But no, I didn’t really find myself running out too much during rounds and after each round you can leave the arena and buy ammo before starting the next one.
But yeah, I probably got lucky that I didn’t do the quest that gives you the Tranformer until I was level 50 which turns one of the more dangerous enemies into a shield charging station.

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Or just go Grenade Spam Moze and finish the thing in 20 minutes flat at M3 while laughing at all the explosions everywhere.

There are these annoying bugs where mobs get stuck in some sort of unreachable area causing you to having to reset the round and I had some issue with round 5 bosses not spawning too and being stuck under the ground making me reset too.

Also there is something wrong with the loot - Slaughter Shaft literally rains legendaries, while for some reason Slaughterstar is a lot stingier. So there’s that too.

I ran it with a level 37 transformer with like 9000 less shield capacity and it was almost easy and I’m pretty much even more furious now lmao. The shock heavy’s wire/tether thing is effectively the most devastating attack in the game w/o shock immunity or high resistance, it bricks your shield and does a fast-ticking DoT that slithers right around the health gate mechanic. In round 4 I watched 3 of these dudes, 1 a badass, come up the stairs and fire them all off at me in tandem, covering the whole area by the entry door in shock tethers and killing my pet instantly. Tbph the existence of the transformer shield does not make these dudes balanced, that attack is ridiculously overpowered. At least the other heavies need to get a bead and open up on you, these guys can fire and forget near you and if you brush up against any part of a shock tether you get downed.

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Slaughter shaft is the same deal as the Trial of Fervor, its filled with CoV badass enemies and they drop a lot of loot. I got 4 legendaries in trial of fervor and 0 in all the other trials. It also takes a lot longer and is a lot more difficult than the other trials with the same time limit and rewards, but thats a whole other topic.

I have had legendary drops in Slaughterstar but thats only bc I was repeating rounds w a bunch of badass enemies several times.

Initially I thought they were gonna be like the circles of slaughter in BL2, where each round is a new mission. But yeah it’s more like the Underdome where you have to finish it all in one go.

And while I haven’t played in Slaughterstar 3000 yet, I’m stuck on the Cistern slaughter because my game keeps crashing around round 3 or 4 (peculiarly, the only spot in the game I get crashes… must be something about that map.) And so my entire progress is wiped out. Grrrrr.

Exactly

Honestly it’s ridiculous how often the jet troopers get stuck outside the map. Me and a couple friends were trying runs of it tonight and it killed 3 runs in a row before we had to end for the night. On our final run it was literally the last two enemies of the final wave of round 2. Being the first time we even made it that far, we we’re near controller-throwing levels of frustrated when we found the only remaining enemies were inaccessible (not even our homing grenades could find them).

The shock wire heavies are one thing, but at least they can be killed (or cheesed with the transformer shield, sounds like). I really hope they bust out a hotfix for this soon though, because for how difficult these arenas are, it really is a load of crap that you can just be forced to retry a given round from scratch just because they decided not to properly play-test their game. And don’t get me started on how you’re forced back to round 1 anytime you boot the game. “Just keep trying and maybe it won’t bug out” shouldn’t be an acceptable solution here.

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It’s even worse with the rakks in the cistern of slaughter, and w them one almost always ends up outside the map on the last wave of the last round.

I keep a Quasar grenade on me just in case some enemy gets stuck outside the map. You can usually yank them back in with a well placed quasar

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The shock heavies feel completely cheap because their lightning rods have a humongous radius that does a metric ton of damage and continues to kill you even as you get out of it.

Good news is you are fl4k and that means with a couple of long range sniper shots to the tank on their shoulder immediately kills them, unlike other toons like Zane who can’t do that.

What I find more annoying is the stupid badass dogs with constantly regenerating shields and armor that keep jumping up and off the platform while sniping you. It’s incredibly cheap.

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My Zane begs to differ. Pretty much any good crit gun, including almost all purple Jakobs snipers can do that on any character. If you have something like a Monocle or an Unforgiven it’s basically guaranteed.

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The problem here is - (1) just about everyone complaining about it being too hard (2) or not being prepared for different scenarios.

  1. Not everything is meant for solo play, and, if something seems too hard, than it’s probably to encourage you to play online with other people; or at least find people to help you.

The Circle of Slaughter is clearly meant for group play, and I imagine that raid bosses will function in the same way, when they release.

So, don’t be mad and/or surprised when you aren’t strong enough to solo raid bosses.

  1. Not every class is meant for every scenario. FL4K is the best boss killer in the game, and while his CC is on par with Moze’, his survivability isn’t.

Though, people will still get angry, cause their class and/or set isn’t the be all end all - or they suck. Either way, same thing.

However! What a lot of people still don’t realize is - you can manipulate the Mayhem Mode multipliers to suit you by reloading the game. So, there’s that.

Lastly, you can deal with stuck enemies by using homing grenades 99.9% of the time. Personally, I have no problem with that, cause the Hex is my favourite grenade, and the best grenade for Moze, in my opinion. Although, I too find it annoying, when I have to go out of my way to do that.

My own personal opinion.

The Slaughterstar 3000 is the hardest challenge in the game right now, and it has the two hardest bosses in the game on top of that.

I never tried doing it on M3, but I beat it on normal mode. Personally, I thought that it was boring, because it was so tedious.

Not to mention that the Maliwan A.I. is the dumbest A.I. in the game. They’ll just standby like re-----, waiting for you to go find them, like a game of hide and seek.

With all of that said, it was the most unrewarding challenge in the game, and I never did it again. So, don’t waste your time, unless you like a challenge, and have too much pride to refuse it.

The Slaughter Shaft on M3 on the other hand is very doable, the best way to farm exp, and it’s the third best place to farm legendaries while online; and the best place to farm legendaries with your friends.

Well, most of my complaints weren’t regarding the difficulty or even the balancing (outside of the NOG spam because they are annoying as ■■■■ and the rewards being a massive letdown) but rather that the Slaughterstar is a buggy mess, including a few potentially run-breaking issues as well as the fact that you are forced to do it in one session even though there’s really no reason for that. Sure, it’s meant for teams primarily but that doesn’t mean it’s undoable in solo play, just that it’ll take a fair amount of time.
Maybe you are adressing some of the comments rather than the OP itself but yeah, I just wanna emphasize again that this is not a discussion about difficulty but rather about flaws with the quest, either on a technical or conceptual level.