Does "Thin Red Line" and "Desperate Measures" synergize?

Does anyone know if the reserved health caused by “Thin Red Line” counts as missing health and thus, would synergize with “Desperate Measures,” which boosts gun dmg. based on the amount of health Moze is missing?

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The highlighted word in Thin Red Line for Moze’s Shield of Retribution tree states that the health is Reserved which isn’t the same as missing. However, Desperate Measures doesn’t specify missing health, simply how low her health is. Though we probably should assume this means missing so I imagine DM is not triggered by it.

DM would be pretty damn OP otherwise. A constant nigh 40% increase on damage stacked with everything else? She already looks OP on paper. That would just add to the insanity.

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your reply illustrates exactly why I asked - because nothing is specified. I was hoping someone had a definitive answer, so I could do more than just “probably assume.”

That’s the big problem with a lot of this. Until we get it in our hands or have an interview with the people who made the trees, we can’t know for sure. However, if D&D has taught me anything it’s that specific word choice is important.


You can use Selfless Vengeance to proc it though although you’ll need gear that heals you or VAMPYR in case you need to reset that.

Ok I think I have confirmation they do indeed synergize. Bahroo found a Legendary shield with the Thin Red Line perk and 60% of his health bar remained empty instead of just giving him a full bar with less health amount. So yeah, that’s pretty OP synergy.

Stumbled onto the “reserved” language, it does indeed mean missing as seen in the pics I posted from the Bahroo stream.

I don’t think we can assume that it means missing simply because of the health bar animation. If the character’s maximum health is reduced upon reserved then that would not count as missing. The only way we can confirm it or not is to check the damage numbers and I’m guessing Bahroo couldn’t/didn’t test that theory to see if damage did actually increase.

I also refuse to believe that the devs would make such a huge mistake. They’ve show that they have learned from past mistakes when it comes to skills and giving Moze the capacity to have half a dozen skills with the potential to increase gun damage upwards of 40% each constantly is a mistake that can easily be caught and fixed. That level of OP is nigh unacceptable.

It absolutely would mean that, depending on the language and how it is being used in the game. You are acting as though this is a case of mutual exclusivity - where one can’t exist if the other does, but that could actually be the case.

Who says it needs to be a mistake? Perhaps they are entirely aware of it and it is deliberate. It’s Borderlands… Over the top is kinda the theme.

In addition, the skill says nothing about “missing” health. The actual wording for “Desperate Measures” is:

“Moze’s gun damage is increased depending on how low her health is.

Whether her health is “missing” or “reserved,” still lowers her health.

TL;DR: My argument is that the wordplay is tricky and that we don’t have proof. The problem with reserved health activating the skill is that is is ludicrusly overpowered. You gain a massive damage increase as well as what technically counts as massive health regen (in the form of shield) at literally NO COST.

Over the top? Sure, but in content. Not stats. Not “so OP that they do literally 250% the damage of any other character”. What would be the point of playing other characters in end-game content? That was a huge problem in BL2 and I’d like to think they’ve learned from their mistakes.

The words missing and reserved have very different definitions. What I’m attempting to say, and this is my own personal interpretation (like, we need to face facts, nobody knows until we see proof in the numbers which I do not believe we have currently) of those words.

As for the fact that it doesn’t specify missing and says low you are correct and I should change my language. However, the only thing I can imagine that would mean is Low relative to her maximum possible health otherwise you could double up on reducing health for shields and then it’s BL2 Sal one shoting Terramorphous with damage to spare all over again.

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Speaking from my personal viewpoint, because you want to play different classes…I’m not the person who is just going to play the class/build that gives the most damage. I’m going to play who/what I want to play and I’m sure I’m not alone.

D3 on xbox is plagued with hacked gear where you can practically one shot anything, yet here I am, not using any of it. Sure, that isn’t exactly the same thing, but the point remains - In light of being able to be an absolute killing machine, resulting in loot, loot and more loot in the fastest time possible, there are those of us that will say “thanks, but no thanks.”

I don’t know if I understand what you’re saying. If she has 100 health, and it gets dropped to 50 through damage or through being reserved, it’s still low relative to her maximum possible health.

What I mean is that dropping to (aka: losing) 50/100 is not the same as being at 50/50.
The reserved health effectively becomes shield which means that it no longer counts towards your maximum health. Therefore, you aren’t technically at lower health since you’d be at 50/50 and not 50/100.

Again, the wording is tricky and I don’t think we can know for certain one way or another unless a dev tells us or we see proof in gameplay.

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but it’s not 50/50. The screenshot provided by gravemind shows that the reserved health actually just drops her health lower than the max and “locks” it there. It doesn’t drop your total health to 50/50, it keeps it at 100 and just removes half permanently.

So yes, according to that screen, you would still be at 50/100, its just that instead of the other 50 just being gone, it’s instead added to your shield.

Here is a video where we can see TRL in Action. It really does lock you out of a part of your max health without reducing your actual max health value. You just can’t reach anything beyond 80/60/40% of your max health. Look at 3:05 and 6:07 and you will see that your HP just can’t be regenerated beyond that, which means Desperate Measures will synergize. Unfortunately however, this makes this skill potentially useless in the higher difficulty levels when we need health gating, because TRL at 3 points makes every healthgate attack an instant fight for your life as we can’t reach the threshold for healthgating.

There is a cool additional application for that at least: You get more health drops and while Moze herself can’t use them as usual, other players can.

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Do we have a solid indication of how health-gate works in this game? I’ve been watching less footage lately due to the abundance of spoilers, but the distinctive red exclamation point until you get out of healthgate seems to have disappeared. So is the 50% threshold still a thing? Or did they change healthgate somehow?

I swear, if I have to worry about going from 49% to 0 in one frickin’ bullet…

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I would be disappointed if Health Gating was still a thing in BL3. That is an obvious thing that should be fixed in a new version. It is just bad design.


I found a class mod with both thin red line and desperate measures on it, and I can confirm that they stack (or synergize as you put it). Moze just got a little more OP

I found a legendary artifact that adds 100% to shields and drops health to 1 permanently! also adds 25% regen and -25% delay

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They do synergize, but it’s not OP. Because health gating is a thing, as it stands you never want to take more than 2 points in thin red line (taking you to 60% life). Taking an extra point, taking you down to 40% life means you can never achieve health gate.

If you’re not familiar with the mechanic: Health gate means that if you have more than 50% of your life remaining, no single hit, regardless of how hard it hits can oneshot you. If you have 1000 max life, and you have at least 501 life, even if you take a 50k hit, you can only be reduced to 1 life.

So if you take more than two points in thin red line, you leave yourself susceptible to oneshots as you will never have more than 50% life. Oneshot damage is incredibly common in the late game, regardless of how much shield you have. Early to mid game it can be fairly strong, but you absolutely do not want it late game.

That being said, you can still take 2 points in thin red line, which makes desperate measures always provide 20% gun damage with three points which is not bad, at all. Getting better if you can boost desperate measures with a COM.