I’m a little late for this party but there doesn’t seem to be a lot of build guides here so… I recently got my Aurelia to level 70. After that I spent a couple of days farming gear and then reset my UVHM and played through the main campaign and the claptastic voyage main quests as well as the Holodome testing the build out. It was fun and worked very well. As a matter of fact it made a complete mockery of most of the game and I think I only died twice during all of it (once failing a quick kill on Bosun and once in Holodome round 4 when something just out of the blue killed me when nothing was nearby for second wind). I thought I might as well write this down and share it. This is the first guide I’m writing here so if there’s something about the formatting that could be improved let me know. I’ve never tried capturing videos but since those would be a fitting thing to add to a guide I might see what I can do about that in the near future.
- The build
- The gear
- Notes on skillpoint distribution
- Notes on some bosses
- Closing words
Oh yeah, I don’t tend to name my builds but I’m supposed to give this build a name, aren’t I? So how about
(I’m not sure if that’s clever or just really lame.)
Not too surprisingly, it’s a sniper + cryo build that uses Droogs as main weapons. The build can one-shot weak mobs, can drill badasses faces to pulp in a splitsecond, is able to freeze everything around, has pretty good survivability and even had enough room to throw in all the skills I want to have in co-op with it. I’ve taken this build through level 70 UVHM solo and aside from a couple of tough spots I had very little trouble in doing that so I can say with certainty that the build is viable. If you like Aurelia and Vladof snipers, namely the Droog, give it a try. I might also point out that this is a relatively “ground based” build: you are going to keep your distance and stay mostly grounded in fights instead of bouncing all over the place spraying lasers and bullets and AOE grenades everywhere.
Awesome damage on anything you can reliably crit
All the damage and crit buffs add up to massive criticals and the Droog is able to machinegun those crits in if need be.
Superior freezing capability
The build has pretty much everything that makes freezing easier.
Between the range at which you can engage enemies and your Naught shield most mobs in the game don’t present much of a threat. There’s also Frigid touch life leeching and transfusion grenades to keep your health up and 3DD1.E Oz kit for the occasional shield repair or health replenish.
The build has a wee bit of a tough time vs a couple of the tankier bosses in the game
Requires some ammo management in some areas. Mostly the aforementioned bosses and Holodome, that require you to keep some track of your reserves (although I consider it a fun aspect of the build, but it’s a con anyways).
Some of the gear is a serious pain in the ass to get. Gather up some stuff, set your save file to read-only or get ready to dashboard a lot and hit the grinder. Booo…
I guess I could also mention that this build is not exactly colorblind friendly as the Droogs always come with a red star-shaped crosshair when scoped in. It can get a bit hard in some areas (pro: constant Warning shot buffs on :D)
– Cryo Transfusion
Preferably longbow with 0.0 fuse. Lobbed should be pretty okay too but stay away from homing or bouncing, they don’t always go off when you want them to if they don’t make contact with the enemy. Offers extra healing and extra freezing. Pretty selfexplanatory. These came in handy in a few places and they do really help out in drawn out boss battles. I’d imagine a shock or explosive variant would be good too but you’d lose the extra freezing this offers. Unfortunately there is no way to reliably farm for these and the best bet is dashboard grinding. Ammo vendors and the golden chest might also be a source for this.
I totally forgot the Leech is in this game too when I was farming gear and only remembered it after I was already done with everything for this guide. That might be better for the build than a regular Transfusion. I’d assume it’s at least a very good substitute.
– Celestial Baroness
This COM offers pretty much everything this build wants (except more reload speed). A lot of critical buffs, better freezing chance, bigger mag on snipers, some pretty sweet extra damage and fire rate because of Quality not quantity buff and lastly some ammo regeneration. The number might seem small but it adds up nicely. I won’t even consider a substitute. Get one from the grinder.
The 0 delay Tediore shield. Probably the #1 shield for Aurelia. Works great with Bitter Riposte and Winter’s Veil. This is a loyalty reward from Tales of the Borderlands. Which sucks majorly. Not Tales, but the fact that getting the shield is tied to buying another game. Don’t do this again GBX, please. The fact that the shield is constantly recharging is giving you very good survivability against occasional bullet or 2 and Frigid touch and your grenade should keep you healthy if something does get through it.
To be honest I’ve just been using the Eddie Oz kits ever since I got them. The things just bonkers good. The things I appreciate about it for this build is the shield regen that occasionally kicks in if it gets broken and the booster packs it sometimes throws out on kills. You don’t need to rely on them but they occasionally give you sniper ammo. It can also shock melee attackers and gives bonus damage to lasers which are not too useful for the build. I also like the extra air control, although I wouldn’t consider it important in anyway, just personal preference. Duality Oz kits can have sniper damage and recoil reduction so they ought to be good too but the buffs change depending on atmosphere. I like 3DD1.Es buffs so I went with it. Can be farmed from CL4P-L3K in Veins of Helios.
– Cryo Droog
The namesake of the build. The Vladof barrel Vladof sniper. I’ve loved this sniper type ever since I tried one out in BL2 for the first time and it works so great on Aurelia. The gun damage and crit buffs allow you to one shot most regular mobs. The freezing makes it easy to take down BA’s and other enemies that can be frozen and take several hits. A burst on a crit spot melts almost anything in a second or 2. Builds up Avalanche and Short summer. Gains lifeleech properties on kill thanks to Frigid Touch. Gets better damage and freeze chance from Wintertide on kill. This gun is the builds main weapon. There’s a lot of good variants but you probably want
- Vladof grip (matching grip for better reload speed and fire rate)
- Dahl or Hyperion stock (in case you need to burst fire less recoil is really nice)
As for prefix I personally have Dobby (stability) and I love it. Gromky (damage) or Bolshy (mag size) could be very good too but there were somewhere around 5 situations in the game where I wished I had more damage (and I think it adds some recoil too) or would have benefitted from deeper mags. Skorry (fire rate) could work pretty well too, but the fire rate after Warning shot can already be so sick that I pretty often fire 2 bullets instead of one because I tapped my mouse button for too long, haha. I’d say Dobby is the perfect fit. As it can come with a luneshine the best ones are crit bonus or shield bypass. I prefer the crit bonus. If you find a good one consider yourself lucky, farming one is a huge, time consuming and boring pain. And you need 2…
– Shock Droog
This is carried around for enemies with superheavy shields mostly. Makes short work of stuff like Deadlifts, Zarpedons or Bosuns shields as long as you can land a burst on their crit. I also used this on adaptive viruses in Claptastic. Action skill to make them cryo resistant and then use the shock weapon to take them out (also, if Wintertide is procced it seems to affect them before the shock from the actual bullet so you can just keep using it). On regular mobs and BA’s the cryo version took their shield down well enough that I didn’t need to switch. The part suggestions for this are the same as the cryo version. I also used this against the cryo resistant Kraggons and Lost legion Ice troops.
– Cryo T4s-R
A very good weapon and the spec works well with it making it my preferred sidearm. It was also my preferred FFYL weapon some of the time as hipfiring a Droog at distant targets tends to make the shots go everywhere after the first few. Works at short range and long range. Very good freeze change and the damage is good enough to take out enemies in a few shots when hitting crits. Besides some FFYL situations I was using this in some bosses to kill their mobs while conserving sniper ammo and I used it on stuff like Torks, Stalkers and Glitches that I thought were easier to get rid of with this instead of a Droog. I was lucky enough to get a Redundant version (double shot). I’d imagine anything except a blade attachment should be decent but Redundant or Win-Win (damage) are the best ones. Can be obtained from Holodome. Matching grip is preferrable for fire rate and reload speed.
– Caustic The Machine
This is what I had on the 4th slot and I used this to take out armored bosses. Shock Droog on shields and then a crit burst from a caustic Machine. Doesn’t get Next to cleanliness buffs but the damage buff from matching element and the weapons unique effect outweight it in those bosses. If you have a corrosive Droog that’s fine too. I used the Machine as I had that on hand. It worked well for the job. Can be used on stuff like the airships and powersuits too. The Droog takes them out very fast without switching if they give you a shot or two at their crits and I used both the Droogs and the Machine on the ones that didn’t, it makes little difference but the Machine is more ammo efficient.
The 4th slot is very flexible and can be used for more situational stuff if you want to switch things around. You don’t need to have the corrosive weapon at hand all that often, after all.
Some further ideas on gear:
The Dahl SMG that only comes in cryo. One of the best freezing weapons in the game as it has high freeze chance and puts out a lot of bullets. The effective range is shorter than T4s-R but it can put out more bullets per clip and freezes better. I only used this in one area as I preferred the T4s-R but it could be used as a replacement for it if you wish. The area in question is Holodome where T4s-R became my main weapon with Fridgia as an occasional backup if I wanted to save some ammo and Droogs ammo was reserved for disposing of Gargaunts, Ophas and Flameknuckles fast as well as some of the cryo resistant enemies. A very good weapon to have around as Aurelia but not one of the main stars of this build.
– Hyperion shotgun or
The Sentinel and Denial Subroutine fights got me thinking that carrying one of these in the backpack for them would’ve probably been a good idea. Gets benefits from the gun damage, crit damage and fire rate buffs you have around. Dutchess stacks also tighten the spread if you’ve accumulated some. Fire does not get Next to cleanliness buffs but would deal more damage to DSR with the matching element. The fights in vacuum so he can’t be lit on fire though. Scav might offer some decent variants for shotguns too. I’d imagine a Boganella would work pretty well. A beamlaser might be a decent replacement if you can’t find a suitable shotgun. Cryo should be good or even better too as it would get the reload buff from Next to cleanliness. It would also work better on sentinels shock resistant phases shield. I’m not actually sure what the best parts are but I’d imagine a Jacobs barrel might be preferrable for the extra damage. I didn’t have one of these but those fights made me wish I did.
I guess you could also throw a rocket launcher in your active loadout for second wind uses if you prefer. The Droogs and T4s-R got me out of those reliably but like I said the 4th slot is pretty flexible so feel free to try different things there.
Notes on skillpoint distribution
I’ll put up some notes on my thoughs about some of the skillpoint uses that might raise questions.
Warning shot vs I never miss
I prefer Warning shot but you can swap the points to I never miss if that’s your preference. The buff from Warning shot is worth 10 stacks of I never miss but it also gives you more fire rate which can be used to kill some BA’s in a second. Warning shot offers benefits to stuff other than the snipers too when you need them. I never miss needs more care to handle and the buff isn’t quite that useful while mobbing as you’ll be killing stuff efficiently anyway. I used to run I never miss but after switching to Warning shot I never looked back, it works great with Droogs and your other gear. Also, you’re almost bound to lose your I never miss stacks on BA’s if you do like I do and unload a burst in their face. It’s really hard to measure the exact moment they die so a couple of extra shots end up missing (which with Warning shot means you just got a buff instead of losing one). And hey, Warning shot causes extra call outs, that’s cool.
You might notice I only have 3 points in Large caliber. I could switch some things around to maximize it but there’s like 5 enemies in the whole game where the extra damage would really help. And as I got through those enemies and 3 points seems to perfectly fine for everything else in the game I’m sticking with it.
Not specced into. It’s a good skill and especially the reload buff is very lucrative. Works well with the Naught too. I prefer it with shotguns but didn’t feel the need with Droogs. Your shield shouldn’t even go down very often in mobbing becuase of the generally long distances this game allows you to engage enemies from so it doesn’t do anything most of the time. Still, if you want to optimize the build for some of the harder bosses this is a good option.
I think this has been covered in other threads but 3 points in Frigid touch tends to be enough to keep you in good health via the life leech it offers. Gets extra benefit from Wintertide and because of it, it actually works with non-cryo guns too. It’s just obviously a lot more effective with actual cryo guns. Be vary, this skill has a flaw (an unforgivably stupid one, too): when you gain health with it the healing numbers pop out of you similarly to how damage numbers pop out of enemies. This can completely obstruct your view, especially if you are moving backwards. You’ll get used to it and working around it but it’s ridiculously annoying in some situations and it shouldn’t be a thing you have to work around to begin with.
If you want more lifesteal you can switch 2 points from Short summer to Frigid touch.
If you don’t like Polar Vortex you can switch the point to Frigid Touch or Avalanche. It can be annoying at times as the guy the shard latches on is going to fly straight up probably preventing you from shooting reliable crits on them for a while. I still like the stun it offers and tend to simply throw the shard towards some other target than the one I’m planning on shooting next.
A Backhand to Remember
The end of this tree has a few points you can swing around if you want to. Even though it’s not used much and takes a few extra points to get down to I like having the option to backhand every now and then. Some areas, especially the Holodome made a more frequent use of it. The skill is not quite capstone material but it is fun to use.
Co-op skills in solo play
Even though I mostly play solo I don’t like respeccing much so I just have the co-op skills on for when they might be useful. As I already said I want to get A Backhand to Remember so I have to spend points somewhere. Everything after maxing out Next to cleanliness is not useful for solo except for Podsnappery but that skill has some flaws so I picked up the stuff I want for the occasional co-op session and I’ve been happy with it in solo play too.
This skill is not very good. Having a delay boost on a skill that gets its full benefit in FFYL when coming out of FFYL fully recharges your shield… Also, the build uses Naught so the whole delay boost is just wasted. I spent 2 points here to get a bit more fire rate on my way to A Backhand to Remember. That’s all it is.
Save the Queen
This one probably makes people a bit curious. I have the point there because I’m curious about the skill, haha. I’ve no idea how much damage it does (probably not much at 1 point) but I slapped the point in there to give my co-op friends the very rare chance to freeze enemies with it. Assuming the enemy gets to melee me before he’s dead or assuming I don’t shoot him before my servant does. This skills proccing requirement is ridiculously situational but I’m keeping it on as I don’t need the point elsewhere and I want try it out a bit more (and the alternative is to put it into Podsnappery).
Keep your chin up
I did not spec into this. I generally haven’t had too much trouble with health management and I’m already helping my servant with You first in co-op. I’d imagine it’s a godsend if you co-op with a more in-your-face build but unless your servant is incapable of keeping himself alive while already receiving shields from You first, I’d stay away from it on this build.
Don’t want A Backhand to Remember or co-op skills and want to free a few point to max out some skills? Can do. Work your way to Next to cleanliness like so:
and you’ll have 6 points to play around with. I’d suggest either maxing both Large caliber and Only the best for more damage and reload and counteracting the mag debuff with Only the best or putting the points into Prudent prudence and spending the last point where ever you wish. Or 4 points in Prudent Prudence and 2 into Large caliber (That’s what I’d probably do if I changed it)… Frostbite could be considered but if I wanted more damage I’d max out Large caliber first as the buff is constant and that gives a 10 % reload buff too.
Notes on some bosses
The boss has no crit spot in the first part of this fight. I lined custom loads to fire and shot a couple of mags from Droog to take care of this part. Just unload some bullets in them and after they split up both of them are taken down by a Droog burst to the crit spot in a second.
Like the trend in most of these bosses is going to be, try to use your T4s-R on his mobs as if you fight the mobs, his shield regenerators and the boss all with just your Droogs you’ll probably run out of ammo before he is dead. I’m fairly sure you could just start the fight by bursting him down ignoring his shield generators but for some reason I have a hard time hitting his crit spot reliably. I can land a burst on his head and only see one or two crits pop out. So I did this fight the slow way. Droog with caustic custom loads on his generators (should probably have used the Machine but I just didn’t think about it at the moment). Shock Droog on his shield, T4s-R on his mobs as need be and either Droog with fire custom loads on his health bar. I mostly just tried hiding out of his LOS and take a burst at his head every now and then when the opportunity presented itself. I’m a bit bummed that I couldn’t get the fast kill as that would’ve been cool.
During the first part she “shuts down” every now and then if you cause too much damage on her crit spot. She can’t be crit when this happens but she does still take damage. The Machine owns her. You should have enough time to open a couple of ammo crates between the phases as you should be pretty low after the 1st one. If you need more ammo use the T4s-R on the bots she summons while opening more crates. Try starting your burst by missing a shot to get Warning shot buffs going for the mag. She’s quite easy.
Oh yeah, I destroyed turrets during her shutdown in the first phase. If want to get rid of them that’s the perfect time to do so.
One of the hardest pricks on this list. The shock attacks are dangerous and I never even know what I’m getting hit by in this fight. Her crit spot is small and she doesn’t tend to allow easy, lengthy bursts into it but she sure feels it when you do. Use shock Droog on her shield and the Machine on her health. Toss Transfusions around when you aren’t shooting her to keep your health up. The fight was over pretty quickly because of the sheer damage output you can do to her but I got hit by stuff left and right and got knocked into FFYL during it. That’s just how this fight is.
Get a good burst with Warning shot procced from the Machine into one of it’s crit spots and the boss is pretty much done.
Boooring! I hate this boss. No crit spot makes Aurelia a dull girl. I should have brought another weapon (the shotgun) to this fight as I had to spend a ton of time scrounging around for more ammo. I’m thinking Hyperion cryo shotgun. I’d suggest T3s-R on the mobs as it makes short work of them while again conserving some sniper ammo to be used on the boss himself. Not much else to say about this fight, it just took forever to complete.
One of the tougher fights for Aurelia. I took him down with just Droogs and T4s-R but probably should have brough a shotgun here too. That’s how I killed him around level 60 and it should work just as well at level 70. Use shock Droog to take out his shield and use Warning shot with the shotgun to unload a couple of mags to it’s face before switching back and proccing Warning shot again. I prefer a shotgun as DSR is a big target and all the pellets will hit him and secondly his crit spots are really hard to hit reliably while also bouncing around to avoid his attacks so just keep unloading the shotgun towards the side of his face and you’ll get some of the pellets to hit them occasionally (which procs Culling the herd for good extra damage on the next few shots). You’ll run out of ammo if you try to take him out with just the Droogs (unless you somehow are able to crit him reliably, I’m not). Use T4s-R or cryo Droog on the mobs that spawn when DSR goes underground to conserve ammo and get some health back with Frigid touch if you’re hurt. Remember your Transfusions when DSR is actively attacking you.
He doesn’t look like it but this guy has a serious crapton of health. He will survive several full Machine mags emptied to his eye. The fight is not very tough but I needed to spend some of it scrounging for more ammo. Try using your AS on him as you look for ammo to prevent his shield from regenerating.
This guy has a lot of health too. Use cover to avoid his attacks or you are in for a lot of FFYL situations. There’s spots on the arena that allow for good bursts to his head while staying safe from his attacks. The respawnable ammo crates will keep your ammo reserves up so that’s not a problem. There’s a lot of small things around to kill if you get tagged by his missiles or other attacks and drop into FFYL.
Shock Droog takes down the shield and the Machine takes down his health. Use T4s-R on the mobs again to conserve some ammo. The BA Glitches should be frozen and finished of with a Droog, they take too long to kill with the T4s-R. Remember to line up custom loads to lightning and acid for a considerable damage boost. You don’t have to wait for him to open his eye to put the hurt to him but be sure to aim there should he open it. No need to worry about ammo here as ammo crates are still handily available.
That’s the enemies I made some notes on. I didn’t go kill raid Sentinel with this build as I consider that fight very uninspiring and boring but I might try that later just to have that covered too. I also didn’t do sidequests as I couldn’t think of one that would have a miniboss or fight that would prove particularly challenging for the build compared to the bosses and fights I went through in the campaigns and the Holodome. Let me know if there a particular thing that would need covering.
Taking this build through the game was a blast. It’s really fun to play and I enjoyed putting together a build for my favorite character utilizing my favorite weapon in this game (although actually getting a character to level 70 and getting the gear was just a painful drag, seriously). The toughest parts were probably the Bosun fight because I had some weird problems landing crits on him, the Sentinel as he can’t be crit at all and the Holodome BA round, although the last one was pretty interesting because of the weapon switching there. Despite the challenge and having to change the way to play for that it’s not a place I enjoy much. Denial Subroutine knocked me into FFYL a couple of times but I didn’t have problems getting back up and killing him so I wouldn’t consider him as hard as the other things (and he’d have been easier had I brought a shotgun, I should probably go do that fight again with one).
Umm, that’s it I guess. Anyone have any suggestions for some free video capturing and editing software? How “heavy” are those things? My PC isn’t exactly the newest one around so if capturing a vid is demanding on the system while playing it might be problematic but it would be nice to be able to add some gameplay footage to this.