B0re, Chain Reaction, Nth Degree, and Unforgiven

It’s come to my attention that many people don’t know that B0re, Chain Reaction, and The Nth Degree are all related skills that function the same at the c0re, and even some that do don’t understand how they do. So I was asked to do a little write up on it so here it goes. If this is unclear, or you have more questions please let me know and I will try to make it more clear and update the op with new info.

How are they related?

Each of these skill do different things, but when each activate the same thing happens. When any of these skills activate the bullet does not keep traveling, or pierce or reflect, but a new bullet is created. Since a new bullet is created if that bullet has a split or an effect that effect happens on the new bullet. If that bullet has what we call pseudo b0re, the original keeps going and you get a new pellet, and if that pellet gets a split the new one will reactivate. They also all act the same with overlapping hit boxes, and rather than explain that I’ll just post a video of each breaking with overlapping hit boxes.

So each of those showed insane amounts of damage done, with the 3 different skills and how they all act the same with overlapping hit boxes.

Does that mean all of these skills are as good as b0re?

Not at all. Just because they can all do crazy damage with some overlapping hit boxes don’t mean they all work the same on all enemies. They each work differently from each other skill.


Shots pierce through enemies, gaining +100% damage per enemy pierced. Enemy crit locations highlighted in Decepti0n.

100% chance to activate
+100% damage per pellet activated
Always on
Needs to line up targets

The reason I call it the b0re family tree because it is by far the strongest and the only one that works on some enemies like hyperious. It is the only one with a damage modifiyer, it is always on unlike the others as well. Those 2 things are why it is by far the strongest. The one thing where the others can compete is b0re procs keep following the same path so you have to line up your enemies which can make it harder for regular mobs, but on big enemies and many bosses it is by far the strongest.

Chain Reaction more details here

While you have an enemy Phaselocked all of your bullets that hit enemies have a 8% chance per level to ricochet and hit another nearby enemy.

8-88% chance to activate
no extra damage on activation
Only on with phaselock active
Seeks new target

Chain reaction is dependent on phaselock being active, and that holds it back, but on mobs and many bosses that is not an issue. The fact the bullets that proc on it seek an enemy to go towards and the fact you can get it up to 88% chance means it can do more damage mobbing than b0re. Even the bullets that activate and hit another target can reactivate another new bullet making them almost ping pong back and fourth between targets. But to do the big impressive kills you are more limited. It can’t do hyperious because bullets won’t activate off of his shield (does not count as a hit), or OMGWTH and Saturn in the peak because there is nothing to phaselock.

The Nth Degree More details here

Every Nth bullet that hits an enemy will ricochet toward another nearby enemy.

11%-20% activation rate
No extra damage on activation
Always on
Seeks new target

Nth like b0re is always on but instead of lining up enemies it activates every X amount of shots depending on how many points you put in it, 9-5, and like Chain it seeks a new target. While it has an advantage of both the other ones, always on and seeking new target, it seems to be the least effective. It does not have the damage boost of b0re, and can’t have the high proc chance of chain reaction. While B0re and Chain Reaction are staples in most zer0 and maya builds, Nth is tier 5 whlie the others are tier 3, combined with the fact there is a weak capstone below Nth its not as used as the other 2.

from the chain reaction thread but it is relevant to all three skills

What weapons do not work? Guns that are pure splash, rockets, or grenades do not work with this skill. Rocket launchers, etech shotguns, torgue ar’s with torgue barrels, any gun that shoots rockets like the logans gun, or grenades like the kerblaster or boom puppy. Guns with bullets and splash damage like plasma casters DO work, just pure splash like splatguns do not. Same rules are b0re for the most part.

Guns with special abilities on impact. So certain guns like the cobra, pimpernel, and others have something that procs when the bullet lands. If your original shot procs with chain reaction there abilities go off a second time on the second hit. This works much like b0re for zer0. I’ll take these guns one at a time.

Pseudo B0re When a bullet hits a enemy or hitbox it does not stop but keeps traveling. Why this is relevant to chain reaction is that chain reaction can proc on each impact. So with converge its quite common to have multiple enemies under a phaselock lined up. So instead of that projectile hitting once and getting a RNG role, it can now how 1-3 times pretty easily and each hit can proc chain reaction. So for example imagine 3 enemies lined up and a blurred trickster com with 88% chance, that one projectile can easily turn into 4 pellets, and each of those has pseudo b0re so you can start to see how well this works.

Guns with this:
E-tech Railers

Impact Effect These can range quite a bit but what it is most simply put is when the bullet hits an enemy or surface a certain effect happens. This can be anything from splash damage to extra pellets, the reason it is good is when chain reaction procs and a new projectile is created this effect will proc on impact again. So this category technically includes all spalsh weapon but I’m only going to list the unique ones.

Guns with this:
Pimpernel - 5 pellets lift off of the first impact each with full damage and spalsh, each can crit and keep traveling to do one more impact at 50% damage
Cobra - A large splash radius wtih 80% splash damage
Storm - A large splash radius with 5 shock orbs each doing 10% splash damage in the form of tesla dots
Godfinger - On impact 5 pellets split off all with full damage, crit, and pseudo b0re
Swordsplosion - 3 mini grenade swords that do 70% splash damage come off of each pellet.
Fibber - On imact splits into 9 pellets each with full damage and crit
Conference Call - Each impact T’s off left and right in a horizontal line hitting anything in its path.
Thunderball fists - A orb slowly lifts up and explodes with a large radius doing 150% splash damage in the form of shock.

Bullet Split This is when a bullet will split into more pellets or projectiles while traveling to the target. Why this is great with chain reaction is that when chain reaction procs and creates a new pellet that new pellet can split again.

Guns with this:
Lyuda - splits into 3
Hail - splits into 2
Leadstorm - splits into 3
Flakker - each pellet splits into about 10 explosions in a cone shape
Sawbar - splits into 3 and each of those split off into multiple fire explosions in a cone shape
Godfinger - splits into 6
Bekah - 3 pellets split off and follow the first, total of 4
Interfacer - each pellet splits into 3 the two outside ones arc back and meet the initial pellet after set distance.


I’m adding this to the thread because many people get confused when they see things like Hyperious and Saturn one shot and think that is how these skills just work but don’t get why that doesn’t happen when you are mobbing and you hear B0re proc. I don’t know 100% beyond a reasonable doubt what happens with overlapping hitboxes but I have a few good theories and I know the results.

The easiest way to explain this and understand it is with B0re, so I’ll use that as my examples. So we know how b0re works, each enemy or hit box that it passes through a new bullet is created that travels on the same path and has an extra 100% damage. So I’m going to take Saturn as an example. We have all seen Saturn killed with one shot, this is possible because you can B0re through his turrets. But the way B0re works if you shoot through his turret you should only get one extra hit with an extra 100% damage and that would barely dent him. Why it does work is because the turrets are not only on the surface of his body, they go inside his body as well and overlap with his hitbox. The effect of this is that b0re keeps going in and out of the 2 hitboxes making them as unlimited as your hardware can handle. So instead of 1 B0re proc you can get somewhere well over 100 from 2 hit boxes.

So this is why if you just have 2 enemies lined up and shoot them they don’t both explode, or why with Hyperious it doesn’t work unless the bots are not only on top of him but inside of him. You can make this happen mobbing with singularities or with converge and phaselock. In finks slaughter house there is a spawn with 4 Goliaths that can be converged together and one shot with chain reaction will kill all 4 of them.

This is a crude MS paint showing the difference of regular b0re and overlapping hitbox b0re.
With the overlapping hitbox what is happening is damage x frames in the time frame of the skill being active, the overlapping hitbox dying, or the bullet passing through the hitbox.

Here are Saturns overlapping hitboxes in red, the blue boxes are where you can hit with velocity added on pimpernels.

How does hardware effect this?

In order for this to happen the CPU has to calculate each impact and each proc, and as these numbers get bigger it is more taxing on the CPU. Secondly you need enough frames for the bullets to keep impacting and procing these effects, but the massive amount of data to process lowers your frames and then you get less damage. This is why some of the crazier kills can only happen on high end PC’s. So lets use the Saturn Maya kills. When people who are on console started seeing those kills pop up on Youtube there were many comments that they could not replicate it on console. The CPU’s on the consoles can’t handle the load this puts on the CPU so not all the calculations happen by the time phaselock ends and causes you to drop frames, or same thing with some lesser power weapons with b0re, the CPU can’t do the math before the bullet passes through the overlapping hit box or you do not have enough frames for enough hits.

Single Enemies that have overlapping hitboxes

Nomads with midgets chained to their shield.
UBA and SBA Constructors
Torgue bikes (with passenger)
Motor Mama in her Bike
Jimbo and Tector Hodunk
Goliaths with midgets on shoulders

Enemies that don’t have overlapping hitboxes but can be set up easily.

UBA and SBA Loaders
Digi Peak Black Queen
Jacques O’Lantern

*These enemies can not be abused by all of these skills. Hyp’s shiled has bullet deflection and only b0re over rides that. OMGWTH has nothing to phaselock in his area so no chain reaction.


This thread also relates to Nisha’s Unforgiven skill in Borderlands TPS


I was farming Saturn using the picture above using a Lvl 50 slag Pimpernel. Was doing pretty well. Then I decided to shoot him from the side, right after he lands, and is still unfolding himself. Killed him with one shot. Granted I am Lvl 50 (was farming for the Hive), and was using a lvl 50 Bee shield ( 31000 amp).

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nice to know :slight_smile:

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I hope the xbox one/ps4 version will improve this for console players.


Yeah they are a pretty big step up from the previous Gen, which at the time bl2 came out was late in the cycle. The handsome edition should be quite nice for console players in more than just graphics.


With Batman running around Pandora killing things with SCIENCE! I am glad there isnt open world PvP . Dude you give me THE FEAR @_@"

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Added a video to the OP explaining more with more slides


Few things I like to add regarding the pimp boring of Saturn.

Often time people will say that you “need” a corrosive pimp to do the one shot bore of Saturn, that’s actually half true. If your framerate is average and you are in a coop situation… a corrosive one might be the only choice. But often times you will be able to consistency bore Saturn with a fire pimp (without bee) in solo play (OP8). This is practical with around 115+ FPS. Furthermore the pimp doesn’t even need to be a OP8 one.

Also the bee helps on systems with lower fps, you want to up that bullet damage as much as possible so bore can get the job done faster…before the system FPS drops and slows that process all together. This is very useful when you are playing in coop and the enemy has a lot of health.

God I haven’t play BL2 in a long time.