Aright guys, here ya go. I used to be in your shoes, until one Spunky117 showed up on the official boards way back when and showed everyone how it’s done. This is my evolution of his build.
—I feel I should note right here that All of this is done withOUT using that silly, OP bug, and that using it is absolutely not essential in any way whatsoever. Unlike Krieg, Zer0, and Mordy, Brick’s melee build is actually NOT about one-shotting everything. It’s about crowd control, DOT, and movement, which gives it an interesting, unique feel. Learn to fight smart and you won’t need that silly bug at all.
The only thing that bug will do is prevent you from properly learning how to play melee Brick, because it makes it easier to play foolishly and win. Furthermore, you’ll still benefit from learning proper tactics and technique even if you do insist on using it.
Build: Everything in the melee tree, except Prize Fighter. 3 points in SLaB.
Everything in the Tank tree except Unbreakable and Die Hard.
Rapid Reload, Endowed, and Liquidate.
Skirmisher with +4 to Short Fuse.
I’m sure you all know the basics for the build, Skirmisher with +4 in Short Fuse for that 6 second cooldown, etc., don’t bother with Unbreakable since it doesn’t work while berserking…
BUT, at max level you’ll have enough points to put 5 into Liquidate, as well. Why? Well, ya see, Liquidate procs during the initial startup animation for berserk, which means you’ve already cooled down 90% of your 'zerk before the current one even starts. How?
Get a good, easy to use, reliable source of explosions - my favorite is the ZPR Angry Crux.
S&S is fast (fire-rate, equip and operation, and reload), and has very good tech and mag size benefits. It’s also a dedicated explosive legendary, so it doesn’t suffer a base damage penalty for being elemental, and because it’s S&S, it procs on pretty-much every shot. The Crux is easy to just spam at the nearest target for a couple shots before you reactivate 'zerk, in order to cool down your next 'zerk. This can be a life saver against tough badasses that show up near the end of a berserk, or against elemental enemies that are resistant to your current element.
–This is another reason not to use the Sucker Punch bug: you’ll have to switch back to the Crux to get your cooldown boost, then re-execute the bug, which will waste time and defeat the purpose of having a low cooldown in the first place. Brick’s survivability in melee depends on his damage resist, health regen, and movement in Berserk, so you want to spend as much time in it as possible. There’s a lot of awkward key-presses to execute this strat while also trying to use the bug, and you’ll waste time fumbling with keys instead of just getting back into 'zerk, which will probably get you killed if you ever have a fight that lasts longer than 1 berserk (or have to switch elements for whatever reason.)
Other weapons I tend to use at endgame are a Cobra, Undertaker, and a Plague / Liquid Orion. Get a 60% Muscleman with a balance between capacity and recharge so you can out maneuver enemies and get your shield back in a reasonable amount of time, but not have it break too fast. You get bonuses for having your shield down, but it’s always good to just have extra hitpoints.
Then, the important thing is to learn that Brick isn’t just an idiot with big arms. There are plenty of bruisers on Pandora, some even bigger than Brick, but the reason Brick stays alive and the others die left and right is because Brick knows how to fight smart.
Don’t just rush in blindly and hope everyone lets you punch them, and don’t just stand there and let them damage you. Learn enemy behavior and tells, know how to fight each enemy type you go up against - there are tricks and tactics for each, some subtle, some not so much. For instance, with psychos, it’s just a matter of learning their animations to avoid their massive damage, as well as knowing you have to focus them down lest they go suicidal. It’s also worth noting that burning psychos won’t go suicidal, and that while they’re immune to fire DOT, they still take fire damage, so you don’t have to switch elements against them.
For, say, Bonehead, take the walkway up around the front of the arena, pick off a few of his buddies, and then hit him with a corrosive dot (betties work well) and then drop down and charge him. Constantly circle to try and stay around behind him, and focus down with jabs. He’ll occasionally knock you back with his melee, and he loves to run around, so use audio cues and the compass / minimap to stay on him.
Chaz is similar to Bonehead, and can be one of the toughest fights to do without going down, but the same general idea applies: throw in grenades and rockets to thin his adds (as well as luring the adds you can out of the main room and down the stairs where you can divide and conquer) debuff him with corrosive, then stay on him and do your best to outmaneuver him.
Daze: Bash is useful for a wide variety of builds, but you need to think of melee Brick as an elemental build. Keep the whole room dazed and dotted, use Sting Like a Bee to dash between enemies and keep everyone suppressed and dotting. Use the uppercut to dash, and the jabs to focus down a target. Use lesser enemies to get kill skills and increased healing and keep the tougher guys suppressed, and always remember to match elements. Remember: “Great is the weapon that cuts on its own.”
Bullet kickback: Some enemies will have SMGs and other high-fire-rate weapons that easily hit Brick’s giant hitbox and can keep you in place. Using cover to draw targets out and ambush them is very useful against overwhelming firepower. Else, you don’t suffer kickback while in the air, so duck back to make the target stop shooting, then jump out to clear as much ground as possible without being staggered. If nothing else, you still have guns, but by and large if you play smart you can close the distance without putting yourself in a situation where you’ll be too worried about it. Play smart and you can clear any zone in the game without going down as Skirmisher.
Crits: SLaB will always try to snap your view to the target’s center mass, but you can overcome it enough to land crits on enemies, and it is absolutely worth it for the spike damage it can do, even on just a jab.
Movement: This is covered a bit in the Daze section, but in addition to slowing enemy fire-rate, Daze allows you to stay out of the target’s line of sight, reducing the shots the enemy can even take at you. Constantly circle your enemy, make them keep turning to face you (which will be slowed by Daze) and you’ll mitigate how much damage even comes your way. If you do run out of berserk while out-maneuvering an enemy, the Crux will get you right back in before the enemy can come un-dazed and round on you.
Badass Corrosive Spiderants: For Spiderants in general you want Explosive for the spike damage on their crit spots. Corrosive Spiderants are particularly nasty because of their super-fast nova they love doing. BUT, there’s a catch: they won’t use the nova if they can’t see you. So, how the heck do you get around behind them long enough to hit them without them stomping you?
You know that attack they do where they launch a bunch of spines? That’s your ticket in. Hang back and wait for it, then rush in as soon as it starts and get behind them as fast as possible. They’ll have to go through the entire animation before they can start to turn. Then, once behind them, use Daze and your movement speed to stay behind them as they try to turn around. Eventually they’ll round on you enough to nova. Let it knock you back and repeat the process.
Moe and Marley: Focus down Moe with corrosive, and try to separate him from Marley. It’s useful to keep in mind that, at least in GOTY Enhanced, Moe’s nova won’t hit you if you jump. Once Moe is down, switch to fire and dash in on Marley with an uppercut, then immediately retreat. Marley will nova the moment you’re in range, so you’ll need to escape again ASAP. Having Marley down hill from you is helpful here. Repeat the dash in, retreat process until he burns to death. Else just shoot him in the mouth with a Cobra…
Non-dedicated melee builds:
Bash is Still awesome for gun builds, and can allow Berserk to be used when your kill-skills are down and you’ve got a tough enemy singled out. The same ideas apply; stay behind the target with daze and movement speed, dot them down, etc. Even on a gun build, well-played Berserk is stronger than a gun build when you’re point-blank against a tough enemy with no kill-skills up. You won’t be able to tear up a whole room like you can on a full melee build, but assuming it’s useless just because you’re using guns is shortsighted. It can save your life. Even smacking an enemy once or twice with the pipe to proc Bash can do a lot to reduce incoming damage and let you hold out until you can get your kill-skills up again.