Concept of the Build
In this build I wanted to embrace Amara’s potential for a close-range elemental destruction by using one of the most badass weapons in Borderlands 3: The Hellwalker!
It will be your main weapon in your loadout and additional weapons are there to compensate for weaknesses of the gun. In order to make Wrainwright Jakobs proud, you’ll be using Jakobs steel to accompany the Hellwalker. With Infusion we can broaden our arsenal of Jakobs guns and use them more effectively at higher difficulty levels. You’ll be able to use all three elements with Infusion, that way using non-elemental guns is not really harmful for your overall damage output.
Amara has a lot of skills, that can enhance the performance of this gun and uniquely fit the playstyle you want to go for while running with this tool of demonic destruction! So let’s see if she can make the Slayer proud!
Amara has …
Strong self-healing mechanics (Sustainment, Soul Sap, Samsara, Clarity)
Great shotgun synergy (Personal Space, Steady Hands, Transcend)
Extremely quick Reload Speed (Fast Hands, Alacrity)
Very high elemental damage (Anima, Tempest, Infusion)
With these tools, Amara can probably get the most out of this gun in this game.
In my testing so far, the key stats to improve this gun are:
Accuracy and Handling
In order to hit most of those key stats I created this build for Mayhem 10:
This build is based around the idea of Avatar with Alacrity. Avatar allows you to use Phasecast twice, which is really beneficial to keep your on Action Skill End Anointments up consistently and to generate and spend Rush stacks in one Action Skill cycle. The first Phasecast will generate 25 Rush stacks, which will be spent on your second Phasecast. That way you get the full benefit of Alacrity in one Action Skill Cycle and end up with a Reload Speed below half a second.
Due to this interaction your Hellwalker will get a pretty ridiculous fire rate!
Furthermore since they added Mayhem Scaling to Action Skill Damage Phasecast can do some serious damage now. I’ve seen it hit for a couple millions with the right setup. That is why it is actually worth to fully commit to Do Harm now.
Further detail on the skill choice reasoning can be found in the “Skill Choice” section of the guide.
Obviously the core part of the build. This It seems to always drop with the same prefix (Speedloadn’= Reload Speed) and therefore has some locked parts. It always comes in fire element and seems to have a locked magazine size of 2. So it will always be a single-shot shotgun. High critical damage and good base damage. This gun also shoots the 10 bullets in the shape of a pentagram. Which just adds to how badass the gun already is. On every trigger pull you get a power chord played with a distortion effect. And if you equip the gun of the floor it plays a DOOM themed riff. Damn, I love it! With 70% Accuracy you also can hit headshots at a fairly decent range, but due to the bullet pattern point blank range criticals will yield the best results. Ultimately, this weapons performance largely depends on the user, since it is quite easy to miss shots with this gun. However, the reward of mastering this gun is certainly worth it!
This gun is a great because of it’s versatility. It does decent bodyshot damage, but you really want to abuse the stickies that will spawn on hitting critical hits. The stickies will blow up after a couple seconds and ricochet towards nearby enemies, often dealing with an entire group at once. I mostly use it when I get low on ammo with the Hellwalker and cannot safely regenerate it without dying or to get rid of annoying Buddy Systems. However the gun does great damage and is a capable mobbing tool on it’s own on M10.
Yes it returns again. It still is by far the smoothest Jakob’s pistol to use in the game and does decent damage on M10. It is prefectly fine as a mobbing tool in regular gameplay or Takedowns. Not much to say about this one, just practice that quick trigger-finger and you’re set.
Sometimes you need some range. For these rare situations,you just want to swap to a Sniper, that does not have limited fire-rate. And the Skullmasher will provide you with exactly that. It is by far my favourite Jakob’s Sniper in the game, just because I don’t feel forced to use Phasegrasp with it.
Still a really good choice and mandatory for this build. Without it, you will not be able to get the Rush Stack Loop with Alacrity to increase the Fire Rate with your Hellwalker on every second Action Skill. It also adds quite a bit off Cooldown Reduction and Weapon Damage.
Note on the passives: The best ones are Jakobs Critical Hit Damage, Weapon Damage or Shotgun Damage. Reload Speed is good as well of course.
Basically you have two choices when it comes to choosing a shield. You want to be tanky or you want to get more battlefield control? The Frozen Heart with the On Action Skill Start Anointment is pretty hard to farm, but it offers you the best battlefield control with a Phasecast setup. I don’t claim any credit for this, this was first shown by Joltz and Lazy Data. However it is really necessary for specific parts of endgame, like the Guardian Takedown where enemy knockback and add control are serious issues. Additionally it is mandatory to survive with a U-Rad Setup, since you do not have Fade Away or a pet like FL4K in a glass cannon build.
If you just feel like, you need more protection I would recommend a Transformer, Old God or Stop Gap with the ASE Anointments.
The Anointment that it provides is key. However I can really recommend a Longbow Quasar because it offers you additional crowd control when you really need it.
One of the new additions of DLC2. This artifact really increases the damage output of your character and is the best choice for every bossing encounter. It works the same way like the Consecutive Hits Anointment, but since you have a quite ridiculous fire rate anyway, it doesn’t take long to get the full bonus.
Note that it can roll with a sizeable increase in magazine size. This really important for your playstyle because it offers you a choice. Getting a roll with magazine size increases your Hellwalker’s magazine to 3 Bullets, basically turning it into a two-shot magazine. While that sounds great, it will dramatically change the way you can play this build. You either go for quick double-taps, or you can just hold-down the fire-button with the one-shot magazine and watch the bullets flying across the screen. It is really up to personal preference. I do run double-shot Hellwalker for quite some time now and got used to it. The choice is up to you!
The Snowdrift offers better mobility. It is great for speed runs or quick farming. Ideal would be the Victory Rush for more damage and movement speed after killing a badass enemy.
Cutpurse Launchpad -
Since they introduced the C’mon Slam Guardian Perk you may use this to refill your ammo, since the rockets of the Launchpad count as melee damage, so it naturally refills your current weapon by just slamming at the peak of your jump. If you don’t have it yet, a Facepuncher works as well with a Cutpurse Relic.
You may use this with the “While under 50% Health, deal 150% radiation damage” setup. This will be explained in the Anointment section of the guide.
There are two choices with a cast setup in M10. You either opt for a glass-cannon build or you use the traditional weapon damage Anointment and sacrifice some damage for more survivability.
Phasecast (+ 250% Weapon Damage after using Phasecast)
Ideally you want this on all your main weapons because you want to keep this Anointment up most of the time.
While under 50% health, deal 150% bonus radiation damage
This setup leads to quite a lot of extra damage, since this actually applies to your Phasecast. That way your Phasecast will hit for multiple millions and oneshot most common enemies and even Badasses once your Do Harm stacks start growing over the course of a map. However, this setup requires you to go for a Deathless Artifact, leaving you with a big shield but only one life point, essentially turning you into a pure glass cannon build. Because of that, you need some additional crowd control with the Frozen Heart or Snowshoe.
Personally I like both setups, but I prefer to use a Phasecast setup with a Pearl of Knowledge and a Frozen Heart for mobbing because I still get the benefits of add control, while not being a pure glass cannon. For boss fights I just switch to a Transformer or Stop Gap, depending on the encounter.
Shield and Grenade:
- 50 % Elemental Damage after Action Skill Usage
You want to have a set of two elements on your shield and grenade. This will add a ton of damage on your guns, and allow you punch through protective layers quicker. Try to match elements with the bonuses on your Artifact. And always use one element that is good for shields and one for armor, so a combo of Cryo/Radiation or Shock/Corrosive works pretty well. You can also stack Cryo/Corrosive Bonus damage on high armor targets like Wotan the Invicible.
This version of Phasecast works similiar to Zero’s Bore skill in BL2, just without all the overlapping hitboxes that you were able to abuse in the previous titles. If you line up a couple mobs, they will get oneshot by your Phasecast. And due to the nature of how Rush stacks work, your damage output will just keep getting higher throughout a whole map. For bossing, just switch to the normal version of Phasecast, since you won’t get much value of Reverberation on a single target.
Soul Sap works well with Phasecast and does not add additional cooldown. The latter is the main reason for choosing this augment.
Soulfire/ Shockra / Blight Tiger
You should usually use shock, so your Hellwalker can punch through health and shields. Just switch to whatever you need, and match elements with your ASE Anointments accordingly.
Fast Hands (3/3) - Good Reload Speed is a key component for the Hellwalker. The faster you reload, the faster you shoot things in the face. Since playing Krieg, I appreciate fast Weapon Swap Speed as well.
Do Harm (4/5) - This skill works really well with Phasecast. If you want to maximize Phasecast damage, you have to put some points into it.
Transcend (3/3) - This talent is great because it boosts your critical damage after you use an Action skill and it can actually stack. With two stacks, you wind up with above 50% critical hit damage bonus after you use your Action Skill. You get more Accuracy as well, which is really important for the Hellwalker and Jakobs guns in general.
Alacrity (5/5) - With Avatar and 25 Rush stacks this skill will give you insane Reload Speed up to the point where you can just hold down the right trigger with the Hellwalker and just watch the gun go nuts. This skill will significantly improve your DPS with the gun.
Laid Bare (3/3) - 25% more damage if used in conjunction with your your Action Skill. Kunai for Amara, it’s pretty good! It activates on your first hit on enemies that are linked with Tiest That Bind, so it benefits guns that shoot very quickly in rapid succession. Which you will with the Hellwalker, if you use a Phasezerker with Alacrity and Fast Hands in the Avatar Build.
Wrath (3/3) - 40% bonus gun damage after you use an Action Skill. This skill cranks up your damage potential. Get it if you can get down to it!
Awakening (3/3) - This skills helps you to get more benefit of Do Harm and Alacrity. I would always take this skill with a Phasezerker setup, since your whole build works with the Rush loop.
Remnant (1/3) - Overkill generally does not work well with multi-pellet guns in this game. However, it is just one point and adds up to quite a ridiculous amount of bonus damage.
Avatar (1/1) - The capstone allows you to use your Action Skill twice and more importantly adds 10 additional Rush stacks. This is really good with Phaseslam and Phasecast and decent with Phasgrasp as well. You should use your Action Skill twice in a row quickly, since the cooldown depends on your last action skill usage. Overall you get more control and a lot more benefit of the Rush loop through this capstone. In my opinion, it is Amara’s strongest capstone.
Fist of the Elements
Infusion (5/5) - Gearbox worked on this skill and fixed some of its issues. Your damage-over time will still be a bit lower, if you infuse fire on flesh with a fire-gun, but it won’t diminish your direct damage. Overall, this skill helps you to increase your Jakobs arsenal because it improves the non-elemental guns of the build by quite a bit.
Steady Hands (3/3) - Accuracy equals damage on a Jakob’s shotgun. The Handling helps as well.
Tempest (5/5) - Multiplicative elemental damage boost! Amara staple.
Indiscriminate (3/3) - Chain reaction in BL3. It’s great, it does massive damage. It works really well with the Hellwalker, since it has a chance to riccochet on every single pellet. Just grab it, you won’t regret it.
Deep Well (1/1) - This and the Pearl with a sizeable magazine size buff add and additional pellet to your Hellwalker. That way you can fire twice before having to reload. Think of it like the mastery of the Super Shotgun in DOOM!
Sustainment (2/5) - Great survival skill. Life steal on elemental damage with your guns. Of which you are going to do a lot with this build. However, it only heals you with the base damage of your gun and does not take into account most of your other gun damage and elemental bonuses. It does not work with damage over time effects as well.
Conflux (3/5) -
Since they introduced the Guardian Rank Perk Harmageddon, this skill actually does add some damage. By applying multiple elemental debuffs on the enemy, Harmageddon will add some decent damage. Either way, you only need two points in Sustainment and you need to spend the points to move up in the Skill Tree.
Forceful Expression (1/1) - Just an additonal 18% elemental damage on top of everything else. Who would say no to that ?!
Personal Space (3/3) - A great multiplicative damage skill for Amara. Extremely good for shotguns because you want to be up close and personal with them.
Clarity (2/5) - Constant health-regeneration that helps to deal with damage-over time effects in the game. It get’s boosted by your COM as well. You need to spend the points to unlock your corrosive element for Infusion.
These are the Mayhem Modifiers I settled on to have an acceptable endgame. I do not like Buddy System, but I don’t enjoy getting oneshot by Death Skull in close range with Post Mortem as well. You can get clowned by either modifier, at least Post Mortem does not disrupt gameplay as much as Buddy System. However be aware, that it can be really frustrating to die in a Takedown when a Skull spawns from the last enemy you killed.
Play with whichever modifier you can personally handle better. I’m not a big fan of the Mayhem System because just rolling these modifiers took a long time. I hope they do change something about that in the future.
Maliwan Takedown M10
Thanks for reading guys! Always open for feedback, suggestions and improvements to the build