[Guide] T0p Gear f0r Zer0 the Assassin

I’m waiting to see how kelr0nd replies to the above comments before I change the link. Speaking of which, I think the Zer0 veterans here should point out what gear needs to be removed (if any) and what gear should be added so that this is truly a community top gear thread and not one person’s opinion.


yeah, I was curious what @DeputyChuck (I know you’re the Sal guy, but you do have Zer0 knowledge too) and other Zer0 players thought about some of things on this list…

I wouldn’t have thought the Fremington’s Edge, Rex/Unforgiven, Godfinger are “Top Gear” for anybody, but at least he has gameplay footage to back it up…(Invader is just about passable, but Top Gear…), but I also don’t have more than passing experience with Sniper Zer0…Hoplite and Roughrider seem odd choices for Zer0 as well…


It would probably be helpful to distinguish between top gear for gun/sniper and melee builds, since these can be significant.


There are definitely a few items that are not really Zer0-specific. All those you listed in fact. And the Interfacer as a HM is frankly hilarious since it’s probably the most commonly used SG.

However, is it really worth a rewrite? The formatting is a huge improvement and the OP has added the Amigo - which was the main thing I was really looking for. I suppose the Punchee should be added since post-patch it’s now TG/HM.

There are probably have enough of us to do a review but I think it would be more work than folks are likely to want to put in.


I am open to any suggestions for improving this guide. It would be nice to hear the opinion of Zer0 veterans.


I сould expand the guide and divide it into 2 or 3 parts, each with its own top gear.


Some starter suggestions

Add :

  • Stalker - can be in with Stinger
  • Coach Gun. As good or better than a Quad with half the ammo consumption.
  • Unicornsplosion (with SWRDSPLSN)
  • Thumpson
  • Punchee
  • Triquetra? Since Quad and Coach are in there and it’s just as good. All Jakobs could go in one heading I suppose.

Remove :

  • Greed
  • Unforgiven/ Rex - all three are mediocre guns with little synergy.
  • Godfinger.
  • turtle shield , Hoplite, Tortoise. Sure they can be used but not TG. Willing to bend to HM.
  • Rough Rider. TG? For Jakobs allegiance I suppose, but otherwise it’s a silly inclusion.
  • Shot COM.

Move :

  • Omen should be combined with Blockhead. Same gun.
  • Interfacer to TG.
  • Invader to HM (or remove).

as much as I like the Greed and think it’s underrated, it’s not TG…

I agree on grouping similar groups of guns together for convenience, like the Jakob’s shotguns and Unicornplosion with Swordsplosion, Thumpson with Hammer Buster (though are these really TG with Zer0?), Stalker/Stinger, Omen/Blockhead etc.

if any of the Zer0 players on this forum have the time, would be great to have them look it over, just paging a few ppl I know who post on Zer0 @nat_zero_six, @zer0blivion, @SomeRandomGuy11, @StormySniper, @ZPD, @bew_ , @User2136, @Sun_Tsunami if not no worries…


I don’t think you need to go that far. You can just put a (melee) or (gun) or whatever beside the item if it really only synergizes with a particular focus. For inspiration, check out the skill guides for eg Sal.


I will defer to others. Also @Enderborn1 is a Zero enthusiast as well.


@DSs too.

Top Gear opinions D?


A few changes I would make to the melee section (I’ll probably go over the guns later):

The law and order combo is not that good if you have a rapier (the rapier will do more damage with pretty much any roid shield), so I think it should be moved to the Honorable mentions category.

The bone is much better than a normal cooldown relic, so I’d move the normal cooldown to Honorable mentions as well.
Also, you NEED the Bone for OP -10 (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wWUEXq3Zw1k)

Storm Front at OP - 10 is pretty bad. You can’t get health instantly with a moxxi weapon (and btw you need an OP 5 one with a shock bone to make it work). In the past, it wasn’t as useless because it was much safer to use and a bit easier to get, but right now it’s just as dangerous if not more than the chain (child grenades can damage you when they die, and you just bearly survive the explosions).

Pun-chee is actually pretty hard to use due to the short delay, and even a bad hide outdoes it in damage with a much more manageable recharge delay. Probably an Honorable mentions as well, only because it’s easy to get.

Legendary Ninja outclasses every melee class mod for any activity. Honestly no point in mentioning the hunter or the normal ninja imo.

Great list though! keep it up? (in borderlands 3 I guess :smiley: )


One item you missed that’s definitely S+ Tier for Zer0 is the Fastball. Hardest hitting Grenade Mod in the game, doesn’t break Decepti0n, boosted by Death Mark AND Ambush, extremely easy to farm.

You can easily build Zer0 around the Fastball and clear pretty much every map at OP10, but it’s with a Melee build that it truly shines. It’s objectively the single best Grenade Mod for playing with a Love Thumper, since it directly makes up for the loss in Execute damage and takes the most advantage of having a free Grenade slot and a matching element Bone of the Ancients. A full volley of Roid-boosted Kunai followed by a Fastball will at the very least enable you to follow up with an Execute against some of the toughest enemies in the game, allowing you to chain MMF against way tougher enemies. It also blesses Melee Zer0 with very high ranged damage that doesn’t break Decepti0n. And finally, it can also allow him to health-gate, albeit not nearly as effective as a Chain Lightning.

If you’re not convinced, here’s Melee Zer0 clearing the single hardest map in the game at OP10 using a Thumper + Fastball :

Edit : it’s also the best Zer0 playstyle for those who don’t want to spend the next 2 years farming for a good Hide of Terramorphous. Every key item in the setup is very easy to get your hands on.


I’ve taken my sweet time getting into the groove of getting my pure melee spec to OP10 so I might be wrong but I think there is also another combination that uses OP1 Shock Bone (with lowest grenade damage boost?) with an OP10 Chain Lightning.

I’m not entirely sure about the former combination and I hope someone chimes in on that one but it might also make Storm Front a much safer option. With a high level bone it definitely just turns the battleground into a lethal minefield for yourself. If there is a safe combination for Storm Front then I’d count it in top gear and Electric Chair should also be added.

I don’t know what makes it better at OP10 for melee so no comments on that. It’s my favorite shield on my hybrid but I think it was better on OP8, although my opinion might be biased because I’ve mainly taken the OP10 version into FFS DLC and using it effectively in most of that DLC’s areas is just depressing.

For the gear on the list I have a hard time seeing Fremington’s Edge as a top sniper in any circumstance. Godfinger was already removed, I see.
I wouldn’t slap Coach Gun in with Orphan maker although it could be there. I could see Coach gun, Bushwack and maybe Triquetra slapped into one category with Quad. More barrels deals more damage but more spread so need to be shot closer. A big argument against a lot of the shotguns on the whole list is that the crit prefix is better on a lot of them than the foregrip that is mentioned on almost all of them.

As far as I know, the crit one does but the sniper weapon damage does not. It’s very nice with powerful shotguns. I would mention that bringing a lower level one (level 80 or lower OP level one) instead of OP10 should be considered depending on your shield. If you aren’t using a very tanky shield using an OP10 Leg. Sniper will eat up a lot of your survivability which is not worth it in my books for gaining just a couple % more crit/sniper damage.

I haven’t thought about this combination since the level increase but has anyone tested what turtle shield is now the preferred level / part combination for achieving this? The old combo was very unpracticable to farm because I think you needed a level 67 white turtle with specific parts for the best result. Hopefully with the level increase to 80 the shield would be something that could actually be reliably farmed if you want to go down this the road of this exploit.

If Order is in honorable mentions then I’d say Law should be in honorable mentions as well. You probably won’t use that combo for any other reason than the lifesteal in a case where you run into an Order that’s better than your current maylay shield. Getting a Rapier is more melee damage and it’s a lot more accessible being available about 30 minutes into the pirate DLC if you rush through it. You can also grab a Rapier on NVHM at level 15 while you’d have to wait until 18 (or realistically more) to grab a law so it wins even early on.

Non-Thumper maylay shield should mention shock resistant Maliwan capasitor. It’s the most important part on them else you’ll be committing suicide by DOTs almost everytime you strip your shield with a shock grenade.

I’m not so sure Florentine should have even a HM spot. Maybe it does? I’d imagine good plasma casters would be better but unfamiliar territory for me. Rough Rider, eeeeeeeeh? Is Fibber really a top pistol for Zero? Again a little unknown grounds for me.


It’s the OP 10 Chain + max health bonus. You need about 18.5% max health so I use iron hand and a max health relic. it is much safer and you can probably do the same with an OP - 10 storm front but you do lose the cooldown from the bone if you go for this combo. if you ask me bone + chain is best because you get instant shield strip (the storm front actually needs to travel a bit so there is a slight delay) And instant health on demand.


It’s an interesting question for @kelr0nd and the other users who contribute to these…are we only considering OP10 in top gear or are we putting considerations into leveling…I guess leveling is too broad maybe and let’s just say UVHM, because pretty much anything works up till that point…

For example, the Shadow Ninja COM and Leg Hunter can very useful for leveling melee Zer0’s so I think it would be worth an aside under the Leg Ninja COM or in the honorable mention section for melee Zer0 (Leg Hunter should be in the top gear for gun Zer0 or at least HM there).

A question for all regarding the Punch-ee and Hide, what’s the max delay on each…I thought the max delay on the Punchee was enough to make
it useable while leveling, just that most versions have a delay that’s far too short to be of real use for melee Zer0. Similarly, the Law+Order combo would at least make HM if we were considering leveling, but then again, I didn’t find it much use for leveling my melee Zer0 and went with a bladed slag rubi instead till max level…

I ask because I can see some people would be looking for top gear to help them level and not just play at max level, or on the other hand, it could make the list too cluttered as a ton of stuff could be put in as useful for leveling…

I was talking to @Sun_Tsunami after the level cap increase and he said it was his understanding that the new OP10 combo for melee Zer0 involved an OP1 shock bone and OP7 Chain Lightning to strip an OP10 Hide, as that prevented downing yourself. As someone who can’t survive with melee Zer0 at OP10, I’m not qualified myself to discuss that further beyond passing that info along. If the above is true, would be worth making a note of that in the melee Zer0 section I think just under the respective items (“at OP10 this is the preferred version”) or something like that…I don’t have more info on Storm Front or other potential shield strippers…

I would remove the Fremington’s Edge as well, but then again, I don’t play Sniper Zer0 so was hoping to hear from some on that point :grin:

I don’t know if Florentine is TG for gun Zer0, as a Maya player, I would have as HM for her or TG, but it’s probably best not to revive that debate of whether it’s any good, again would love to hear from the hybrid and gun Zer0 players on that one


I think it’s good idea to mark items with “OP10” mark or “OP1-OP5” mark for example.

But the topic’s name is T0p Gear, not just the Gear. According to this scheme, I may add the whole Borderlands Wiki here.

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With your permission, I’ll copy that :slightly_smiling_face:


Well, OP is certainly a thing. Mostly though, top-gear is going to be top gear regardless. The tricky part is balancing top gear which is really hard to get with alternatives that are maybe not quite as good but a lot easier to obtain.

@ChemicalConundrum: We’ve had the conversation before during revisions of other top gear threads, and the consensus has always been that such suggestions are better in a separate levelling thread for a variety of reasons. Generally, you’re looking at ~3 top gear and 1 or 2 honourable mentions, but putting more items than that in is counter-productive.


I believe end game should be criteria for Top Gear. Leveling up gear should be HMs. End game doesn’t mean OP10 though. End game means OP0 for many - or even most.