The Ranger com is a favorite of many Bloodwing fans, thanks to the extremely short Bloodwing cooldown and extra targets from the buffs to Predator and Bird Of Prey it provides. It also provides team buffs to accuracy and either critical hit damage or accuracy recovery, so it is highly recommended for Bloodwing focused Mordecai players in coop.
-Constant Bloodwing: Buffs to Predator and Bird Of Prey ensures that you can have Bloodwing flying about getting his murder on almost constantly.
-Coop friendly: Your teammates will appreciate the free gun buffs.
-Gear flexible: With the exception of the mat2 5th line, the buffs provided to your guns are universally useful, and thus support any loadout.
-Lack of DPS buffs to guns: With the exception of mat2 5th line, which only helps certain weapons (details in “Mat2 or mat3?” section below), the Ranger com provides no buffs your gun DPS, so you will be relying on your skills for that, and that means having to choose between maxing out Bloodwing or making your guns more effective.
-Less Bloodwing damage compared to Hunter com: The Hunter com’s 1st line and buff to Swift Strike mean that despite the additional targets that the Range com grants though the Bird of Prey buff, the Hunter com actually does more damage with Bloodwing.
-No Sniper-Ranger build: Because of the Ranger com grants bonuses to Predator, which are very significant in light of Bloodwing’s base cooldown (28 seconds), an investment of at least 15 points the Rogue tree is strongly encouraged. This precludes a build that invests heavily in both the Sniper and Rogue trees, something the Hunter com can do without issue.
This guide contains two builds; the first is the Gunslinger-Ranger build that uses pistols to support a heavy investment in Bloodwing, the second is the Hybrid-Ranger build which drops points from less essential Bloodwing related skills to pick up the Sniper Rifle buffs from the Sniper tree to support the use of both Sniper Rifles and Pistols in one build.
Sniper Tree: 10 points
-Focus: It’s buffed by the com, and works with all weapons, of course we’re maxing this.
-Killer: One of Mordecai’s best skills in his entire tree, this is must in any Mordecai build.
Rogue Tree: 33 points
-Swift Strike: More Bloodwing damage. Yes please!
-Swipe: With how many targets Bloodwing can attack, we’ll be getting a lot of mileage out of this skill.
-Fast Hands: A nice accessible reload speed buff, obviously worth.
-Out For Blood: For when we really need a healin’.
-Aerial Impact (3/5): This worth dropping to 3/5 so we can max out Killer, we’ll still Daze out enemies more often than not, and with how many times Bloodwing can attack if he doesn’t manage to Daze em the first time, he probably will on a subsequent attack.
-Ransack: Who doesn’t want more loot?
-Bird Of Prey: This skill lets Bloodwing attack an additional time per point, and it’s buffed by the com. Easily the most power Bloodwing skill in the entire tree, of course we’re maxing this.
Gunslinger Tree: 25 points
-Deadly: Might as well make those critical hits hurt more.
-Gun Crazy: This skill gives a chance for your Pistol shots to fire twice as many projectiles, which means a chance for double damage!
-Predator: It’s buffed by the com and reduces Bloodwing’s cooldown, the reduction is so good that Bloodwing’s cooldown will be a mere 4/1 second(s) (latter figure if +4 is in Predator), which is insane, given what else we have going for Bloodwing in this build.
-Hair Trigger: Buffs Pistol fire rate and magazine size, for squeezing as much DPS out of our Pistols as we can.
-Relentless: This skill is insane, a powerful on-kill fire rate buff and a 25% chance for +100% Bullet Damage? Sign me up!
Hybrid-Ranger: The skill tree is rather similar, just a few points moved around to help our Sniper Rifles out, so I’ll just describe what’s changed
-Added Caliber and Loaded for our Sniper Rifles.
-Removed the 3/5 from Aerial Impact and all points from Swift Strike as well as 2 points from Out For Blood, bring Out For Blood to 3/5. This is where the 10 extra points dumped into the Sniper Tree came from, I went after the Bloodwing related skills that we’d miss the least to get them.
The Ranger com is pretty flexible as far as weapons go, but the mat2 5th line effect gives reason to prefer weapons that have the highest critical hit bonus. Top of that list is the Bessie with a whopping 500% critical hit bonus (this bonus however is due in part to the scope providing a 150% increase in weapon critical hit damage, thus the Ranger com’s buff is based on baseline 200% typical of all Sniper Rifles, and stacks additively with the extra 300% derived from the scope), Gambles are technically next, but in order for a Sniper Rifle to get that title, it must have a mediocre barrel, which will more than offset the gains from the critical hit bonus. Next up are Repeating Snipers and the Unforgiven, which both sport a 200% critical hit bonus. Close behind are Semi-Auto Sniper Rifles with their 180% critical hit bonus. Revolvers have a hidden (not visible on guncard) 100% critical hit bonus. Intense accessory Combat Rifles have a 50% critical hit bonus. There are a few uniques that also have a critical hit bonus, but they typically have many fixed parts that limit their power enough that they are outclassed by comparable Purples and Legendaries.
This is pretty much up to user preference. The heal return from Bloodwing will often dwarf your maximum Health, so increasing that with a Torgue Muscleman shield may prove very effective. Resistance shields are always useful when the overwhelming majority of damage you are receiving is of one element type. Pangolin shield’s superior capacity is useful for fighting at shorter ranges where avoiding damage is difficult, and by contrast, Anshin shields and their short recharge delays are superb when used while sharpshooting.
With nothing pushing us to go with any particular mod over another, user preference yet again prevails.
Mat2 or mat3?:
The mat2 version boasts +84% Team Critical Hit Damage, which will increase a weapon’s critical hit bonus by 84% of its value, hence a Repeating Sniper will end up with a 200%*1.84=368% critical hit bonus. The mat3 version gives +84% Team Accuracy Recovery, which increases the rate at which you and your team’s crosshairs will return to their minimum size from any larger size (which can happen for a variety of reasons). The mat3 effect may not even be functioning (my own testing was inconclusive), or if it is, it’s effect is probably very minute. As a result, the mat2 version is typical preferred by a considerable margin.
Gameplay tips and other information:
Bloodwing can sometimes be rather finicky with his pathing. Terrain with lots of obstacles frequently results in him getting stuck on terrain trying to reach a target on the other side. He also has a maximum range and won’t begin going after targets until you are facing one. Once he starts attacking he will continue until he has attacked the maximum number of targets, even if those subsequent targets are off screen or until his timer runs out, or there are no targets in the area, in which case he will continue to fly about until a target is onscreen and in range or his timer runs out. He can be called back to you at any time by activating the skill again, this can be useful if you need a healing now from Out For Blood or to get him unstuck from terrain (though you will have to wait for his cooldown if he attacked any targets). Bloodwing cannot attack the same target twice in a row, but he can however, ‘bounce back and forth’ between two or more targets, meaning he can still end up striking the same target multiple times, which helps immensely against badasses and other tougher enemies. Be mindful of what types of enemies you are fighting and what elements they are vulnerable/resistant to. Try to take advantage of their weakness by setting Bloodwing to the best element for use against the enemies you are currently fighting before sending him out so as to maximize his damage. Using Bloodwing for health sustain is strongly recommended, not only will Out For Blood likely fully restore all of your missing health, Swipe will tend to spawn lots of Insta-healths if you’re missing a fair amount of health, which can help you stay on your feet instead of your knees.
Three Rangers and a Sniper armed with a Bessie results in the highest weapon critical hit bonus in the game, a whopping 1204%.