How Phase 2 action skill/melee damage scaling works

DISCLAIMER: This is not a comprehensive guide. This was an early analysis just after Phase 2 was released. Many more things have been discovered since that are Mayhem scaled (Hollow Point, Fire in the Skag Den…), scaling keeps being changed (TTB), and there’s weird stuff going on with some bonus elements, and the list goes on. This is just an early snapshot.

Now that action skill and melee damage scale with Mayhem, I ran some tests and these are the early results. I’ve tested Phaseslam, Phasecast, Fist over Matter and Ties That Bind. TTB aside, all other action skills I’ve tested follow the same pattern. That same pattern apparently also applies to Rakk Attack (thanks @plenipotence), so I assume that’s the base pattern for AS scaling.

So here are the values:


As you can see, AS and melee damage bonuses increase proportionally with enemy HP bonuses, except for TTB. But all of them (including TTB) are calculated based on enemy HP bonuses. I figured out these formulas:

Action skill damage (Phaseslam / Phasecast / Fist over Matter / Rakk Attack):

DmgBonus = HPBonus × 0.3

Meaning that for every +100% enemy HP from a Mayhem level, your AS damage is increased by +30%. That’s +60% AS damage at Mayhem 1 and +3,000% at Mayhem 10.


DmgBonus = HPBonus × 0.15

Same principle, only that the increase is half that of action skills. This is +30% at M1 and +1500% at M10. This also applies to Fish Slap and Face-puncher.

Ties That Bind:

DmgBonus = 100% + HPBonus × 0.05

TTB apparently has its own weird unique rules, it ranges from +110% at M1 to +600% at M10.
edit: Moze’s Short Fuse apparently scales the same way. Thanks @Prismatic
edit 2: this also applies to Indiscriminate. Just like TTB, it used to receive bonuses from Do Harm, but now it receives a flat x7 bonus on M10 instead.

Here’s a chart showing the multipliers for each Mayhem level:


Now TTB looks pretty poor on this chart, but don’t let that fool you. Keep in mind that this chart shows Mayhem scaling multipliers, not actual damage dealt. TTB damage is based on actual damage dealt by anything you hit the enemy with, instead of the puny base damage of other action skills. In fact, on M10 TTB does far more damage now than before, even though they removed AS damage bonuses from TTB.

Do Harm still increases damage from Slam/Cast/Fist over Matter, but it no longer increases TTB damage. Don’t bother with Do Harm anymore in a TTB build.

Not convinced? Consider this: TTB now gets a flat +600% bonus at M10. Previously, if you had 99 Do Harm stacks with 5/5 Do Harm and 3/3 Awakening, you got a bonus of 99 × 4.5% × 1.3 = +579%.

On M10, TTB now deals more damage out of the box than it did with 8 points invested in Do Harm + Awakening before. Don’t even start complaining about a “nerf”.

All these bonuses are “multiplicative” as far as I can tell right now, meaning that e.g. if you have +275% melee damage or whatever, the +1500% on M10 will multiply the result from that.

It’s not:

BaseDmg × (1 + 275% + 1500%) = BaseDmg × 18.75

it is:

BaseDmg × (1 + 275%) × (1 + 1500%) = BaseDmg × 60

I may update this post if new things are found.


Thank you for doing Tyreen’s work Doc!


Initial testing has suggested that FL4K’s pets scale in a similar way where DmgBonus = HPBonus × 0.2. (Although some attack commands may need further investigating)


“we are back” - melee amara enthusiast.


Now I know why Face Puncher is so good.

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@gentlemann . doc might also be back in melee.

Dope work @DocStrangelove!

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incredible work in this short amount of time!
It looks promising, will this enable a true melee playstyle again though.

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Anyone check if it works with the Fish Slap? Thought it would work well with Amara in a melee supported spec. Also been using it with Slayer modifier on Zane with the Clone and Fractal Frags, would be nice it if worked for something other than ammo regen with Cutpurse.

Is it just me or does phase slam still do almost no damage on m10? It’s definitely improved but it’s still useless.

I’m confused by Ties That Bind, and why it needs to be scaled at all.

I thought it was just a straight 35% of the damage you dealt. So, if you do 100 shotgun damage to a grasped enemy, those around him will get 35 damage each. I don’t see where scaling even fits into this. What am I missing?

Yes, and it’s really powerful.

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Thanks for this quick info about new patch specifics, now I know to respec my TTB build.

Can confirm what GrzesPL said, Fish Slap and Face-puncher get the same +1500% bonus as actual melee attacks. Added this to the OP.

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Great work man ! Big Thx for that , you should be paid by GBX :grin:

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According to some, they’ll pay me for making vids saying I enjoy the game :crazy_face:


They should rather pay you to teach them how to explain the calculation of the game mechanics :rofl:

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That took 9 months to patch.

Nice finds, though. With the Melee buff and the 300v2 nerf a while back, plus new guns that won’t have that anointment. It’s time to bust out the Breaker COM hybrid build again.

Sorry, just bumping my question as I think it got lost.

Could someone please explain how/why Ties That Bind scales with Mayhem mode? I didn’t think it did any damage on its own, and just did a straight 35% of whatever gun/melee/etc. damage the linked targets got.

My understanding of how TTB works is obviously incomplete. Thanks.

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TTB takes all damage dealt (except status effects) to one of the enemies, and deals 35% of that as action skill damage to all linked enemies.

So say we deal 1000 dmg to one of them. 350 dmg will then be dealt to all others – however since it’s elemental damage, those modifiers apply. E.g. we’re using fire as action skill element, that will then deal 350 × 1.75 = 612.5 damage against flesh and 350 × 0.5 = 175 against shields.

Now prior to the patch this was considered action skill damage for damage calculation, i.e. you could increase it with Do Harm. Let’s say we have 5/5 Do Harm (that’s +4.5% per stack) and 30 stacks, that’s a bonus of 4.5% × 30 = +135%. Thus, we’ll now deal 612.5 × (1 + 1.35) = 1439.4 against flesh and 175 × (1 + 1.35) = 411.3 against shields.

With 99 stacks and 3/3 Awakening you could get a total bonus of 4.5% × 1.3 × 99 = 579.2%, so TTB would deal 612.5 × (1 + 5.792) = 4160.1. Now let’s add +30% fire damage from Tempest and another +10% from the elemental damage guardian rank: 4160.1 × 1.4 = 5824.1.

We just hit a skag for 1000 dmg and 5 other skags nearby received 5824 dmg each. Even with fire against shields every linked target would get 1783 dmg, so still far more than the original target. If it’s a splash weapon and it hit 3 of the enemies, each of them would deal that damage to all others. That’s how stupidly overpowered it was and why it was so superior to all other of Amara’s action skills, which did pretty much zero damage on M10. It was pretty broken.

So now they increased all action skill damage in the game on Mayhem levels and things got really out of hand. They increased TTB less than the other action skills (×7 dmg on M10 instead of ×31) but it was still absurd: it means we’re at 40,768 dmg now from that 1000 dmg shot. I believe they realised this during testing, so they “fixed” it before releasing the patch by removing the ability to increase it with Do Harm.

Now it’s tied to your Mayhem level, so it’s 35% dmg on M0 (with no option to increase it via Do Harm) and 245% on M10 (which is more than that maxed out situation before, but without spending any skill points). It would have made more sense to just keep it how it was and don’t do any Mayhem scaling on TTB. That said, they mentioned in the patch notes that this was a temporary solution, so this may be changed again.