Health, damage, healing, and FFYL: needs an update in BL4?

So, I’m a bit concerned about how BL2 and 3 have handled all of the above.

In BL2 you basically had to run a Rubi (or grog nozzle) or some other Moxxi weapon to stay alive, and even then, at high levels the only thing keeping you alive was the health gate. Enemies were able to activate your health gate pretty easily in UVHM, so you pretty much had to run a slag moxxi weapon and try to manage your health that way.

In BL3, we now have a similar situation; enemies down you so quickly that you either need some kind of lifesteal going on, or you need to cheese everything, or both. For better or worse, health gate appears to be gone, though now we’re left in a situation where you can basically kiss certain risky playstyles goodbye, because you can’t survive it.

The problems, imo, are twofold: one, is scaling. This one is fairly simple, the numbers went too high too fast, and Mayhem just makes it worse.
Second one is the combat itself not supporting the kind of playstyle that this system of health, damage, and healing support.

I may be wrong about this, but this is my opinion on it.

Really speaking, there is very little one can do to avoid or even mitigate damage. Unless a shield offers considerable resistance to an element or elements of some kind, it’s basically just a second health bar. There’s not really any reliable way to avoid damage or manage resistances in a meaningful way; even Zane’s shield only reduces it a bit. Best you can hope for is some kind of gimmicky shield, but last I heard no-one is running the Rico.

We’ve got no cover system, no dodging, no blocking, no armour options, only a couple of skills on certain characters that reduce damage numbers slightly, conditionally. Some VHs don’t even have a consistent way to heal using their skills, yet they don’t have the bulk or defences to make up for that lack. What difference does more health on Fl4k mean in M10? Why would Zane need Hearty Stock when he has Salvation? What the hell is Moze supposed to do?

Apart from the obvious issue with scaling, I’d like to see more options for healing or avoiding damage. Maybe allow consumables like in BL1? Just keep them in their own compartment, like ammo (not in a gun slot like in BL1). How about we get some armour, and let us choose how to defend ourselves? Shields aren’t doing that, they’re just a second health bar that occasionally does cool things. Firefights are too active to allow it to recharge and behave as it was intended.
We could have heavy armour that slows you down but has good defences, or you could sacrifice armour to increase movement speeds.
I’m not sure that a dodge mechanic would work in a FPS, but I’m not aware of any effective way in BL3 to avoid enemy bullets once they’ve spotted you. Long range isn’t an option because they don’t spawn until you’re close enough, and only the Unseen Threat allows for anything closed to ranged combat anyway due to the ‘stealth’ kills mechanic.
As for FFYL… I’d like to see it removed or revamped. It creates a need for adds in boss fights, and the grey-out-while lowering-gun-sights thing is very annoying. That, and most teammates will die trying to revive you due to the scaling.
I’d prefer something that was faster, but came at a cost; perhaps a player can share some of their own health or use a consumable. Maya’s action skill was good for that.

What i don’t like in BL3 is that every VH (except Fl4k) has something to instantly heal (Because of health gate you can go from 0-100% in 1 shot).
VHs should have more or less sustain and should require different risks and rewards.
Imo it’s done really poorly in BL3, all VHs play the same on this regard (except Fl4k).


Agree - higher difficulties make passive regen somewhat pointless during combat - life steal rules. It’s not like this snuck up on them, sals entire brawn tree had this issue, unless you can get back above healthgate in a split second it’s not worth it.

Yeah, that’s definitely a problem, too. It also ties into the problem of the current system not really allowing for particularly different playstyles when it comes to health and defenses.
Not to mention that a means of staying alive should not be character specific, unless you want to have a dedicated healer class, but all of the VHs are too weak and spongy to go without some kind of self-healing.

Not just Sal; any VH in 2 needed a Moxxi weapon to stay alive.

Possible exception was Krieg, though I imagine I’d have had a harder time without the community patch scaling his melee damage to OP levels.

I’d only disagree by saying that Maya really didn’t need Moxsy weapons (outside of raid bosses). However, % life steal is always going to rule in a game where the difficulty curve is advancing enemy level and damage above player defences. Think it’s too late to fix for this game.

A single point in Amaras lifesteal power (I can’t recall the name - sustainment?) outdoes her entire green tree, not to mention the bugs with samsara. This is sad and does impact build variety.

Even with the fix to flaks regen - it pales in comparison to a single life steal anoint or a shield with ASS anoints. Makes you feel like you are wasting points.

Passive Regen isn’t entirely useless, but you can’t rely on it at higher difficulties.

1 Like

That kind of health regen only really works when you can back it up with pure tankiness; a simple health boost doesn’t do that, sadly.
Health can not get high enough to make a difference in this game, and even if it did, lifesteal will always be better.

A cynic would say at this point they should ditch the idea entirely and focus on difficulty increases through mob density, enemy variety and gameplay mechanics … but that wouldn’t fit the business model of retaining players through the ever increasing level grind. Another cynic would say this doesn’t work anyway because hey … look at my PSN friends list of no one playing BL3.

Good thing I’m not a cynic - now back to the Bioshock collection.


Yeah, this was something I never liked. Past a certain point your health and shield values are meaningless because seemingly everything almost instantly kills you with every hit.

1 Like

Also, since shields aren’t scaling to M10 levels I’m curious even if they did how much would they really help? Maybe more so on some VH but not all.

Not sure. What’s the calculation, M10 enemies deal 10x more damage or something? Shields would have to have 10x the capacity to make a difference.

Trouble is, if they did that, it becomes painfully obvious that any ‘difficulty’ and progression is just a case of inflated numbers.