Guide to the Current Moze Meta - Mayhem 10 Edition
This Guide is currently OUTDATED. CLICK HERE for a more up-to-date meta guide
This guide will cover the basics on where to invest your skill points for the current Mayhem 10 Moze Meta. We will not be discussing gear much as that will vary wildly from player to player. The only truly important gear listed in this guide will be Class Mods, Artifacts, and bonus stats rolled on them.
What is a Meta Build?
A Meta Build for Borderlands 3 utilizes specific principles to conquer end-game content with the following standards:
- Minimal exploits.
- Mass appeal for a wide audience of players.
- Minimal downsides across all enemies and content.
- Maximum damage while accounting for survivability, quality of life, and ease of use.
- Perfect gear preferred but not required.
Table of Contents
160 Splash - 160% Bonus SPlash Damage for 18 seconds after exiting Iron Bear anointment. List of Splash weapons and weapons that can get this anointment: List of All Splash Weapons .
300v2 - 300% Damage against enemies with >90% health anointment.
Fire N2M - Next 2 Magazines deal 125% Fire Damage anointment.
Pearl - Pearl of Ineffable Knowledge DLC artifact.
V2 - Damage Multiplier within the damage formula. Re: Borderlands 3 Damage Formulas.
Skills - The Short Fuse Meta
Before we get started remember this isn’t a build, this is a guide to building the Meta. The follow skill point distribution will not add up to the amount of points needed for you to reach the required Capstone Skills. Skills that revolve around the current Meta include Short Fuse and Scorching RPM’s.
If you are unaware of how Short Fuse works read this guide: Short Fuse - Analysis and Breakdown.
We will discuss the best point sinks to unlock the next tier of skills later. This distribution of points are almost required to complete the Meta. There will be notes on each skill and whether they are suitable point sinks, whether they should have more points added at your discretion, or if they should be avoided entirely.
Important: This is based on a Blast Master Class Mod with 1 point in Redistribution. We will discuss another Class Mod and Meta experiment further on.
This is an example of a final Meta Build. Keep in mind the points in Vampyr are only to get the skill planner to reach the cap stone, you can invest the extra points wherever you want. There are 3 spare points here which will most likely be added to Iron Bank, Matched Set, or Dead Lines. Armored Infantry is an ok option, as is Security Bear.
This is not a definitive example of the best Meta Build. Spec properly for your gear. I will add some more examples with specific ideas behind them later.
Meta - This colour indicates the optimal skill point spec for return on investment; or the baseline of the Meta. You can put more points in these skills if possible, but extra points here should be considered the same as Priority Skills.
Priority - This colour indicates the best use of points outside of the minimum required Meta points to progress the Skill Tree further
Point Sink - This colour indicates decent skills that can be used for spare points only if you have them, these skills can be specced but have the lowest priority
Controversial - This colour indicates skills that have been tested rigorously by the community and are likely a bad investment; use your own discretion. -Not Recommended-
Fire in the Skag Den - 1/5
Exceeding 1/5 is not recommended!
A single point in FitSD is one of the best investments you can make with Moze, however any further points are typically wasted or downright dangerous. One point allows Moze to take advantage of the Consecutive Hits anointment and the Pearl Artifact. By simply firing splash weapons at enemies or throwing grenades she will apply Fire which can maintain stacks. Another advantage of FitSD is it applies an extra Status Effect for the Guardian Perk Harmageddon.
Why don’t we want to invest more points? The other 4 points are better invested in Grizzled to reduce Cooldown Time. FItSD is not being used for damage as it is quite weak against enemies, and we don’t rely on the DoT’s damage. Furthermore, with TCP’s chance of proccing a larger radius we increase our chance of doing self harm with splash. Having 5/5 FitSD is significantly more dangerous to yourself than 1/5.
Dead Lines - 0/3
With the current state of Iron Bear scaling for Mayhem 10, Dead Lines is not a required skill. However, this is a great point sink for spare points.
Why would I want to put points into a skill for Iron Bear if it’s useless? Because Iron Bear isn’t completely useless. We will discuss Iron Bear Hard Points later on, but if you need to proc anointments and you want to use Iron Bear for a single or couple shots Dead Lines will reduce fuel consumption significantly. This allows you to proc anointments quicker later on.
Grizzled - 4/5
Grizzled is the best Cooldown Rate Increase Moze has available to her outside of Topped Off. Whether you want to pilot Iron Bear at all, you need to proc anointments / Some for the Road, or you have gotten yourself into a situation and need an escape plan; Grizzled at 4/5 points is a much better and less detrimental choice than wasting points in FitSD.
Note: Contrary to a popular rumour, a single point into Grizzled is an absolutely terrible investment. Grizzled can be effective at 3/5, but really starts to shine at 4. You can put a 5th point into the skill if you want to squeeze everything you can out of it. Grizzled is mathematically, and undeniably a significantly better choice than Explosive Punctuation. EP is a bad skill and should be avoided in the Meta.
For more information read this guide: Efficiently Increasing Moze’s Cooldown Rate
Means of Destruction - 3/3
- Max out MoD, there is no reason not to. Even though grenades currently don’t scale into Mayhem 10 they are extremely useful for utility and required for: Vampyr Healing, Redistribution / PtHP proccing, applying status effect with FitSD, and using the OGT anointment.
Torgue Cross-Promotion - 5/5
There was a time when this skill was considered a nuisance and annoying, and that time is now. TCP is a double edged sword, it can clear the field of enemies but it can kill you. But… It can kill enemies right?? Splash boosts are when combined with the 300v2 anointment, and there is no better option in Moze’s skill tree to reach Short Fuse.
With the update to add splash damage to this skill, it’s a no brainer to take advantage of that. This is a huge Meta shift that has a lot of other considerations and implications tied to it. Take advantage as best you can of the random splash radius increases, don’t max out FitSD unless you’re extremely careful, and finally be wary of AoE and splash radius rolls on your Artifact and Class Mod respectively. For anyone that isn’t aware: Yes, AoE on Artifacts increases splash radius.
Stainless Steel Bear - 5/5
- Since Iron Bear is not as useful in Mayhem 10, SSB is strictly used to raise the damage done by SF. SSB has an unlisted boost to Short Fuse, however don’t expect a massive damage increase here. There are simply no better skills to reach Short Fuse in the tree.
Pull the Holy Pin - 1/3
Utility Skill. Generally anything above 1/3 points here are wasted points. If you have this skill rolled on your Blast Master, you can avoid investing any more points here unless you plan on Class Mod swapping. The only reason to invest 3/3 here in Mayhem 10 is if you are using a grenade that doesn’t have several explosions.
Note: Assuming you use a grenade like the CMT, you will proc Redistribution with each grenade nearly every single throw unless you’re extremely unlucky. It doesn’t hurt to secure that with an extra point if you have one to spare, though it’s generally not recommended. If you don’t have a CMT and use a Tracker Grenade with less explosions 2/3 might be necessary here.
Auto Bear - 1/1
- Invest a single point here strictly for the utility. AB is great for applying debuffs with Target Softening or radiation DoT’s with Hammerdown Protocol. It will also draw aggro from you, which is especially useful while proccing SftR.
Vampyr - 3/5
- 3 is the minimum you should have in Vampyr, and 5 is mostly seen as the typical maximum. If you have a large amount of points on your Blast Master, you should likely keep it at 5 or below but you may find the slight extra healing to be worth more than other skills in the tree.
Why Can’t I carry All These Grenades - 0/3
- Useless skill. If you have a point to put into this, you should rethink your choice.
To the Last - 1/1
- Grenade damage is low, but utility is great here. Some weapons can still run out of ammo with Forge. being able to proc Redistribution easily in FFYL is not a bad choice for a single point skill. The other options left are mostly undesirable and while the damage is low, in FFYL every bit of damage becomes extremely important.
Explosive Punctuation - 0/5
Don’t waste your points here. There’s a multitude of issues with this skill; Not being being nearly as useful as Grizzled, not having that great of an effect in general, not being consistent and usually requires you to be in enemy fire which in-turn wrecks Topped Off, and it can be replaced by a single CDR increase on your gear. But the biggest downside to EP is how high it is in the skill tree. There’s just simply no argument for taking this skill in the Meta.
For more information read this guide: Efficiently Increasing Moze’s Cooldown Rate
Short Fuse - 1/1
- The basis of the Meta, this skill offers a large damage boost best utilized with weapons that fire lower pellet counts but can still be used with most guns. Both SSB and SRPM give an unlisted damage boost to SF. There are a lot of reasons the Meta is based around Short Fuse, for more information about the skill and why it’s better than it appears at first glance read here.
Cloud of Lead - 5/5
- While this skill can be replaced with Matched Set, CoL is recommended for most builds. It has the benfit of adding a projectile every 4th shot which meshes well with stacking other bonus projectiles. It is also much less restirctive than Matched Set. CoL allows far more shots with each magazine which in turn allows Redistribution and Forge to keep your magazines topped up.
Dakka Bear - 0/1
- There are ways to make use of Dakka Bear, but they’re not often possible in the Meta Build, especially at Mayhem 10. This skill can be considered for some co-op play, but should likely be avoided for most builds.
Matched Set - 0/5
- CoL and Iron Bank are generally much less restrictive skills to use, however if you’re using COV weapons pick this over Iron Bank. The Iron Bank is actually detrimental to COV buids. If you happen to be making an Allegiance Build, Matched Set may offer better synergy than CoL.
Stoke the Embers - 3/3
If you are not using Fire weapons, or the 125% N2M anointment at all, don’t bother with this skill. FitSD is not worthy of spending 3 points here to boost it.
- Boosting Elemental Damage is fantastic. So if you’re running any Fire on your build this is a fantastic skill. It’s roughly the same idea as boosting Splash Damage, but can actually be more valuable as long as you utilize its effects. StE is great because we don’t have access to a lot of elemental boosts for Moze, so grab it if you can.
Redistribution - 1/1
An important skill for the Meta. You will want a Class Mod with +1 Redistribution if you can, and put a point here for 2/1. This allows Blast Master builds to use higher damage weapons with lower magazines. This Meta allows you to push this idea to it’s limit with Forge. Get a version of your weapon with the smallest magazine size you can comfortably fire without emptying the mag too quickly. With Redistribution proccing from crits and PtHP you should be able to keep your magazine topped up all the time.
When used in combination with Click, Click… it’s a good idea to find a the lowest magazine size version of your weapon. Combined with a +magazine Size bonus roll on your Artifact most decent base mag sized weapons should be able to Fire near empty with Forge, and fill back up with a Redistribution proc from PtHP. Think of the mag refilling as a form of reloading when considering this interaction. Just don’t actually reload your weapon with Blast Master or you’ll be waiting 50 seconds to get your full Splash damage back.
Scrappy - 5/5
Most builds should max this out, but if you’re using the Pearl and the Consecutive Hits anointment you may not find much damage is gained here. More on this later.
- Scrappy has earned a capital S. Before getting weapon damage it was a very mediocre skill, however after the buff Scrappy has allowed us to generally skip going up the Shields of Retribution tree for Drowning in Brass. It’s not as powerful but it’s a great substitute that’s almost always proccing instead of kill dependent. There’s also some minor utility with this skill for swapping between 300v2 and Consecutive Hits anointments in a hurry.
Rushin’ Offensive - 1/1
Rushin’ Offensive is a zero to hero skill. When RO gained the ability to get Life Steal, a general Life Steal buff was also applied to the game. Now all damage the character throws at enemies, multipliers and all, is calculated in the health returned. This is significant and allows players to relax more on Vampyr.
Life Steal from this skill works with all damage Moze applies to enemies while sprinting. This is not limited to firing her gun. It applies to current DoT’s applied and grenade damage. Using the sprint button as a heal button adds perfect synergy to Moze’s Meta.
Note: Unfortunately there is currently a suspected bug with this skill that does not allow Moze to initiate sprinting while she is already firing. This is likely a bug because she has always been able to do that with the skill.
Scorching RPM’s - 5/5
- The final skill that makes the Meta tick. SRPM has several benefits to using it including RoF increase, critical hit increase, unlisted SF boost, and Iron Bear damage increase. There is no reason to pass on this skill. It works well with Click, Click… and Redistribution as well. There’s not much else to say, just max this out.
The Iron Bank - 0/5
This is a great skill if you need it. It’s not recommended to invest points if your mags are already large enough to fire coninuosly with Forge and Redistribution. It can help balance SRPM and Click, Click… and should you have the extra points you can consider spending them here.
Note: Iron Bank has a negative interaction with COV weapons shots and time to break. If you’re using COV weapons you should probably go with Matched Set instead.
Specialist Bear - 0/1
- It’s a single point. Take it if you want, though it is far less useful without Iron Bear scaling to higher Mayhem Levels. If you’re using dual Target Softening, skip this skill. If you’re using Hammerdown Protocol it’s probably worth the single point investment.
Some for the Road - 1/1
You’re this far in the tree, take this skill. This is the ultimate bossing skill in the game. Though it isn’t exactly necessary for the Meta, this single point investment opens a lot of opportunities with Launchers to wreck havoc against large health bars.
When you’re using a precisely balanced Click, Click… build this can allow you to hop out of Iron bear and just spam bullets at enemies before going back to your regular ping pong magazine.
Click, Click… - 3/3
If you’re using the Pearl and the Consecutive Hits anointment you may not find much damage is gained here. More on this later.
Some builds will not utilize Click, Click… and some will. This is a criminally underestimated skill that has been the brunt of a lot of “anti-synergy” talk. While this skill was previously not worth speccing into for most builds, after being buffed this is the final nail in the SoR tree for the time being. Often misunderstood as the black sheep of the Bottomless Mags tree, taking the time to actually learn how to make use of this skill can pay off with an average increase in weapon damage of 40%. Use proper mag size increases to get your weapon to empty at a comfortable rate with Forge and use Redistribution to fill it back up in a second or 2. The key is to not over-buff your mag size.
Another great use for Click, Click… is permanent 60% weapon damage applied to zero ammo launcher builds.
Read the Click, Click… Guide here for understanding on how it works: Click, Click… Analysis & Math
Forge - 1/1
- Not required, but heavily recommended. Forge is the ultimate QoL skill for Blast Master. It’s worth noting that there has been a buff to Forge that allows it to draw ammo from reserve so it no longer soft caps your magazine size when you pick up ammo on the ground. The sheer DPS gain from being able to fire your weapon like a fire hose is also note worthy. You’re already up this high in the tree, this is one of the best single point investments you can make for the Blast Master Meta build.
A Quick Mention of Important Gear
There are a few important traits to look out for on gear to work well with the Meta Build.
Ideally you want to use the Pearl as it will give the most substantial damage increase for Moze out of all other Artifacts. Gearology Link to read more on why the Pearl is more powerful than the card implies. You will need a +Mag Size bonus stat on it.
If you don’t own the DLC, or you can’t obtain the Pearl with +Mag Size, look for any regular Artifact with +AoE Damage and +Mag Size. Ideally a Victory Rush, Otto Idol, or Last Stand.
Class Mod Stats:
For skill selection you will require +1 Redistribution to make full use of the Meta. Otherwise you will have to make multiple sacrifices in other gear / skill selection. There is no Perfect distribution of skills for Blast Master, but preferably only a maximum or +1 in PtHP. Anything beyond that is a wasted point. When speccing into Demolition Woman you can adjust the number of points you invest into PtHP and Vampyr to suit your needs. It’s recommended to max out Vampyr rather than PtHP to reach Short Fuse if you have the proper gear to support the perfect Meta Build.
Bonus stats for your Class Mod should be +Splash Damage, +Weapon Type Damage (ie. SMG, Assault Rifle, etc Damage), +Manufacturer Crit Damage if you’re using it, and +Generic Crit Damage. Note that +Weapon Type Damage is less useful if you are primarily running the 300v2 anointment.
300v2: The best anointment currently for Blast Master is the 300v2. This bounces off your highly boosts Splash Damage applied to your Meta Build allowing you to rip through Mayhem 10 enemies without matching elements. Using proper Elements is a force to be reckoned with. Look for this on Launchers to one shot or nearly one shot bosses off the hop, and use it on your mobbing guns to tackle badasses quickly.
Consecutive Hits: The best anointment for Moze to swap to if you didn’t end the enemy with the 300v2 anointment is Consecutive Hits. If you’re already running the Pearl this generally works the same. It also diminishes itself, along with the Pearl, into some of the selected skills but the raw power is noteworthy enough that calling this a back-up anointment is mind blowing.
160% Splash: If you’re trying to take out the biggest and baddest bosses in the game, it’s a good idea to have some weapons with 160% Splash for 18 seconds. This will not be as powerful as the 300v2 anointment, but if you didn’t one shot the boss this anointment is the best to use for follow ups. You can choose toi run this on any gun that is capable of getting it as it is still a very solid choice.
125% Fire N2M: If all of the above are unavailable to you, the 125% Fire N2M anointment will be your next choice. Though considerably weaker than some of the other options, it is easy to use and maintain.
What Are Diminishing Skills/Stats and How Do I avoid Them?
I will provide a quick guide here to tell you what to do. If you want further understanding of this, read the full guide here: Optimizing Moze’s Damage - Math without Numbers.
Let’s use this as an example:
Weapon Card Damage = 1000
Gun Damage Boosts = 60%
Splash Damage boosts = 200%
V2 Damage boosts = 35%
This is your made-up character’s current gear stats. Which ones are additive and which ones are multiplicative?
Gun Damage is Additive, Splash and V2 are Multiplicative right? Wrong.
Answer: They’re all Additive and they’re all Multiplicative. If you didn’t know that, then stop using these terms until you learn it.
If instead you asked me: Don’t you mean which one’s are Additive to each other and which ones are Multiplicative to each other?
I’d give you a gold star.
The Answer to that question is:
(Weapon Card Damage) x (Gun Damage Boost) x (Splash) x (V2)
If we insert more Splash and more V2 we get this:
(Weapon Card Damage) x (Gun Damage Boost) x (Splash + Splash) x (V2 + V2)
So a multiplier is additive to itself, and can be a multiplicative to other multipliers. We don’t tend to want to raise weapon damage often because our skills provide a lot of gun damage, the Pearl of Ineffable Knowledge is also a large contributor to Gun Damage. Hence on our Class Mod and through anointments we want to aim to boost other categories. Due to already having a lot of Gun Damage it would require either very large Gun Damage boosts to make an impact, or alternatively we could add boosts to other categories that while smaller have a bigger impact on our overall damage.
So to answer the question, how do you avoid diminishing your damage with skills / stats?
Raise all of your multipliers as evenly as possible. When you raise one multiplier, the others diminish less. With the 300v2 anointment, raising Splash damage further will result in better gains than using the 160% Splash boost. Weapon Damage is still a great boost, but you have to remember to give some T.L.C. to your other multipliers.
Don’t get too caught up in buzz words like Additive, Multiplicative, and Diminishing returns. They are important terms, but they’re often grossly misused.
With Mayhem 10 Could Mind Sweeper Be the New Meta Mod?
Let’s give this a quick answer and a long answer.
Quick Answer: No.
Long Answer: Still no, but provokes an interesting look at what a Meta Build is.
Let’s first examine why Mind Sweeper won’t become the new Meta. The simplest answer is because Meta = Popular. Popular doesn’t always mean the best, but it often does in a way. A Meta is a consensus among the player base to find an easily accessible way to win at a game. It becomes Meta because it’s easy to obtain, simple to use, and most importantly there are several more upsides to it than downsides. Here lies the problem with Mind Sweeper; Though it is an extremely useful Class Mod and can output massive damage, there’s several enemies in the game that are hard to crit or impossible to crit.
On top of that, Blast Master is just simply less stressful to use and much easier to squeeze high damage and survivability out of. It also requires less specific gear that’s easier to loot.
So what advantages does Mind Sweeper have over Blast Master?
Long story short it depends on the situation. It can throw down some pretty hefty numbers on enemies, and it can clear some mobs arguably quicker (at least during events that spawn extra enemies ie. The Cartel). But where Mind Sweeper falls short of Blast Master is end game content like the Take Down. Not being able to crit during some of Wotan’s phases means you either try to use a crippled Class Mod to get to the next phase, or you swap to Blast master before entering the area to get the Splash Boost ramping up. This alone now requires a player to have 2 different class mods just to use the Meta.
This leads to a very interesting question though.
Can Mind Sweeper become part of the Meta?
While the short answer is still no, the very definition of Meta would exclude something that increases the required equipment and skill level for a subjective and minor gain in almost every circumstance.
But the long answer is: Sort of. If we base our Meta Build around Blast Master and we carry a Mind Sweeper for situations where it has an advantage, we are simply expanding our Meta.
This subject can be the source of confusing the term Meta with Viable Alternative or Additional Utility.
For information on Mind Sweeper read this guide: Mindsweeper Math and Gear Application.
As always, thanks @Prismatic for helping me get this together. And to all the Guide Authors linked in the post.