[Build] Spy Zero

Updated to level 80!

With the latest patch, Gearbox balanced a bunch of skills that were either bad, or that scaled poorly in UVHM, and Zero’s Unforseen is among those. Upon learning of that, I immediately set out to make this old favorite build of mine a reality.

This build is both old and New: I have played through the game 5 times with it… but never past level 50 since it was not viable in UVHM.
Yes, I actually made 3 separate Zeros just to be able to play it again and again, as it is, in my opinion, the most fun build that Borderlands 2 has to offer.


Very few surprising things here when compared to a typical C/B Zero. No Rising shot (could be used but the playstyle doesn’t get much out of it) and of course, we are adding Unforseen :smile:
There is also enough room here to go semi-melee if you want to. A Roid shield and a blade are all you need to incorporate that element to the build.


(Thanks to @stupid_red_x for the video)

This build relies on a quick use of many different sources of damage: Kunai, Unforseen, a gun and potentially grenades. The idea is to throw deception, use your Kunais and then come out of deception as soon as possible. Usually you use deception and wait until the last second to milk the most of the damage boost, but if you come out of deception sooner, you get a portion of your cooldown back… which is exactly what we want here, as neither Kunai nor Unforseen are affected by that boost. Ideally, you should make the shot you take to come out of deception count as much as possible too, and you also have the advantage of being able to position yourself easily. So the logical choice here are shotguns (specifically Jakobs ones) and snipers. They work wonderfully with OSOK and dish out a ton of damage. (There are other good choices, I will list a few later on :slight_smile: )

So the playstyle goes a bit like this: Deception, Kunai, grenade, Gunshot (boosted by Death mark, 10/5 ambush, deception, OSOK…), Decoy goes off, Reload while Killer is active, dodge and switch to your slag gun and spray a bit while your cooldown resets (with help from both your COM and relic), and repeat from the start. :smile: It’s not as hard to execute as Melee Zero, but it requires the same kind of coordination. It’s frantic, fast and very fun :blush:

By all means, check out the video above for a great example of that gameplay at work if the details are still muddy.



Main gun: A slag pimpernel with a blade.
It does everything I need: It slags reliably, can kill at long range with a well-placed shot and it slices. You can probably do 75% of your playing with just that gun

The shotgun:
Of course, there are times where a little more brute force will be welcome.
The absolute best gun for this build is the Twister. It’s VERY powerful, b0res like crazy, and you’re already wearing a shock Bone of the ancient anyway.

Baring that, a Coach gun is in my opinion, the best balance of accuracy and damage for Jakobs shotguns. It also has a reasonable ammo consumption. Though if you want, just about any good Jakobs shotgun could work fine here. Jakobs grip, Doc’s or Well-Kept prefix.

Outside of Jakobs, there are a couple great options.

If you like explosions, a Ravager or SWORDSPLOSION! are incredibly powerful too, and a few points in Velocity can help with their slow projectiles.
Torgue grip, Casual prefix.

The Jolly Roger (especially in shock) is pretty great too. Bandit grip, Critikal prefix.

The Bekah is also a total monster with this setup and deserves to be considered too even if it’s not a shotgun.

A few other things to consider carrying in your other slots:

  • a Moxxi gun, to heal through your decoy, Kunai or grenades is always a good idea. Bonus points if you can use it to slag. Grog Nozzle, Rubi, Slow hand and Kitten are all great choices here.
  • A slag tool is also invaluable. The Slagga is among the best choices here.
  • Another snipers besides your slag Pimp. Snipers are also very powerful on single shots and can allow you to take on foes outside of shotgun range. The Skullmasher is silly powerful.
  • Something to deal with buzzards and other annoying flying enemies. I will sometimes switch to a CC for that, but usually, my kitten can do that part too.

Class mod:

Tricky spy With Ambush as the second skill. This COM has everything we need: Cooldown, boost to Unforseen and to ambush (which boosts Unforseen too).
Accept no substitute.
(Of course, a Contemptible spy with Ambush and Unforseen switched is a decent alternative too. :slight_smile: )


A shock Bones of the ancient is perfect here: more damage for our exploding decoy and a faster cooldown to throw it more often. Again, nothing else cuts it here.


Nothing specific here, use what you like. Zero shines with the Blockade, the Antagonist or Turtle shields.
If you enjoy a bit of melee hybrid like I do, a Hide of Terra or other similar roid shield can be a good pick, thanks to @stupid_red_x for the suggestion.


Here you have a few options: A slag singularity or Quasar can help to get shy enemies more intimate with your decoy. The former doubles as a passable slag tool while the later takes advantage of the bones relic you are already using.
Alternatively, a Magic missile or slag transfusion are great choices as slag tools, but you won’t get as much control as with a singularity.

So, that’s it. Feel free to leave a comment below, feedback is always appreciated. :smile:


I’ll have to give this a try soon, I wanted to play with 11/5 unforseen, this looks like the perfect way to try it


It’s always nice to see Chuck excited; he’s so productive :smile:

Just so you know, he put this together in about 5 hours :blush:


I just want to add that the Unf0reseen does its max. damage when it’s close to the target.


I didn’t know that. I thought it was like a grenade and had a fixed damage within it’s spread. I need to test this further. Thanks :smile:

It’s either that, or it can be blocked by stuff, or something else is going on. I was throwing dozens of them at the dummy, and the damage wasn’t consistent.

Maybe it’s affected by the Deception timer too.

If you always wait for deception to end on it’s own, does it remain inconsistent ?

I’ll just upload it(after that, I will delete it, because it’s a few seconds video)

Check the channel.

1 Like

Im so happy bout this update. It made a lot of skills viable now, meaning more build diversity.
I run maliwan build with unforseen, with little evie for CDR.

1 Like

Yes, this is like it’s a new game.
Right now I’m having fun with Maya using a build that focuses on Cloudkill, Helios and the Fox and Witch COMs :stuck_out_tongue:

1 Like

Same here m8, my backdraft build wrecks faces on OP8 now. I could swear that it performs even better than on 72.


That’s great news. Have you ported it to the new forum yet ?

Nope, but now I might do ;).

1 Like

Concerning the irregularity of unforeseen, I have made some tests today. It seems that there are 2 values that come up: one I get most of the time, and a slightly lower one when I end my deception very quickly (less than one second) As long as your deception lasts at least one second, the value is consistent.


Hey Chuck, how Unf0rseen works with Many Must Fall?

No idea, I have never really tried melee Zero.

It works well: when MMF activates, the decoy explodes.


Im asking because, if every reset can set a shock explosion, Many Must Fall could increase a lot your damage output. Have you thought about going hybrid?

Seems a nice improvement for this setup.