How To Make Cold War Good

Cold War is one of Wilhelm’s least understood skills, and for good reason. It adds its own complicated rules to a poorly understood elemental effect system, leaving its full potential hidden from most players.

A few months ago, I posted about how Cold War really works, and most of the reaction has focused on how bad Cold War is for general builds. Since then, I have discovered a new and powerful playstyle centered on Cold War. This playstyle is centered around 3 simple rules:

  1. More points in Cold War is better.
    You won’t get many chances to proc CW, so higher proc rate makes a big difference. For this reason, a Terminator com boosting CW is required for this playstyle.

  2. Use shock weapons.
    If an enemy takes a DOT without procing CW, you need to wait for that DOT to expire before you can proc CW again. Shock has the shortest DOT duration, while also gaining massive boosts to damage and DOT proc chance against shielded enemies. The Vibra-Pulse is a great place to start.

  3. Use elemental skills.
    Fire, shock, and corrosion all have separate chances to proc Cold War. This allows skills like Vengeance Cannon and Hazmat to increase our normal proc rate. With all the frozen enemies, explosive skills like Omega Strike and Power Fist will do at least 3x damage. Termination Protocols will get both bonuses, while Venom Bolts should still be avoided at all costs.

If you follow these rules, Cold War will increase your DPS, incapacitate your enemies, and make Wilhelm feel like a deadly siren.

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Why do you think I rate it as high as I do?

It does increase dps at 5/5 even, its not a stun its a bonus crit.

Personally I have to say it’s an essential skill, spec into Meteor slam and get a good shock oz kit (I use a shock acrobat so I’m always slamming for the speed boost, about 60% if I recall) and you’ll be freezing things galore, especially when you combine the thunderfire or other dual element weapons.
Not to mention the sheer damage and effect vengence cannon can have can proc it on mostly anything you hit.
I don’t use the Terminator COM on my Wilhelm and I freeze more often than not, I can’t imagine how much more I’d free with Cold War getting +5 or +6 off a blue Terminator COM. (+10 or 12% on top of 5 points)

Especially useful for anyone who needs the slam shatter three frozen enemies, especially paired with a cryo oz kit, +10% freeze chance on a cryo slam then swap to nice powerful oz juggernaut.


Quick side note, I’m in no way, shape or form as well versed in weapons or skills as all the guys who make guides, this is what I have personally experienced as a player who builds into what makes my gameplay fun, not for pure damage or anything. I play by guess work for my builds and when I have all skills that interest me I spend any excess points in what’s effective according to the community.

You forgot to add the following:

1: Cold War can Proc for asphyxiating enemies in Vacuums.
So when fighting non-badass Scavs, any critical hit has a chance to freeze enemies (even Jakobs guns that aren’t Too-Scoops!). Even Melee attacks can freeze foes as long as you get a crit and feel lucky enough.

2: 3DD.I.3’s Shock tethers are affected by Cold War.

3: Spike and Nova Shields benefit as well.

4: Tediore Lasers can freeze foes with their shock tethers when thrown (yes, even the Laser Disker).

5: WARNING DoT from self inflicted sources (Elemental Barrels, Vengeance Cannon Splash Damage, Splash Damage from your own guns/grenades, etc.) can proc Cold War on you (you won’t see the effect on your screen, but you will feel the movement impediment) so be careful.

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cold war is best with chroniclier of elpis freeze evryone all the time haha

No its not, that is an extremely bad set up. You should never use Cold War w/ cryo gear.

Works best with thunderfire. A shock laser with a second element attached gives 2 instances to proc CW. Best you can get, unless the boomacorn does better.

Vengeance Cannon adds fire splash to any shock weapon, making the Thunderfire’s splash redundant. A better choice would be a Vibra-pulse, or a shock Rosie, or some other shock weapon.

The thunderfire’s splash comes out at a faster fire rate than VC, and its already pretty accurate, so it doesn’t need VC to work. To get the Vibrapulse or Rosie to work, you need VC to tame the recoil so you can actually hit stuff, and VC fires slower than the thunderfire, meaning its less likely to cause a cryo effect (though the vibra,rosie would be more likely to, so I guess its a trade off).

I’d give the edge to the one that can operate independent of VC. Besides, with the Thunderfire being a blaster and the Vibra/Rosie being beams, they serve different enough purposes that you can just equip both.

Don’t forget that the Vibra-Pulse has a secondary shock effect that can proc Cold War on nearby enemies, giving it a similar total proc rate to the Thunderfire before VC starts up. It also gives 2.5% lifesteal, as well as being easier to obtain than the Thunderfire (less so after the patch).

I’ve never had much trouble with recoil on the Vibra-Pulse, it’s much more manageable than the Rosie.

I decided to run around with 11/5 in Cold War for the first time in over a year and I tried out a shock Mining Laser with it. As long as I could hit all three beams on target, it appeared to have about a 50% chance to freeze the enemy.

Normally, after applying a DoT to an enemy and not freezing him with it, you would have to wait for the DoT to wear off to get another chance to proc Cold War. To me, it seemed that as long as you can apply multiple DoTs at the same time, you could bypass this rule.

With a regular railgun, you would have a 40% chance for a DoT which would translate to a 22% to freeze with 11/5 in Cold War. The Mining Laser also has the 40% beam but it fires out three of them at the same time. So you have three chances to apply a DoT at the same time and because of that, you have a triple chance to freeze.

I could be wrong though. Maybe I just got lucky with the procs while I was testing all of this.

I mean you could just use a cryo mining laser and save urself 5 points and a com 3 beams at 40% chance to freeze is essentially 100% chance to freeze vs 3x 20ish chance to freeze when you shock.

I’m not trying to defend Cold War, I still think the skill is pretty crap. I’m just saying that this setup exists (I haven’t seen any people point out the potential synergy with the Mining Laser) and it’s pretty much the only way to make Cold War semi-viable IMO.

STILL, 11/5 in Cold War and the shock Mining Laser does have it’s benefits. First of all, it is much more reliable at freezing shielded targets since cryo suffers against shields. Second, it is able to take advantage of the full crit boost from using a non-cryo gun against a frozen target. And third, while you are in a vacuum, you could use the Duality Oz Kit that increases shock chance for a boost that seems to be a 80% proc chance.

I’ll say it again, I still think Cold War is crap, but this setup is pretty much the only way I know to make the skill somewhat viable.

And again, I am not really sure if the 3x beam of the Mining Laser actually has a better Cold War proc chance or if I have just gotten lucky with the procs. For all I know right now, it could have just been placebo all along.

Well I think the only way to make it viable is to spam Storm fronts and pray.

All guns get the 200% type A crit from an enemy being frozen. Cryo guns don’t get a reduced percentage to my knowledge.

Doesn’t this interfere with the one DoT at a time rule? Teslas constantly apply DoTs to the enemy and if the first one doesn’t freeze anything, it’s not going to freeze unless the grenade expires. Unless of course, you were being sarcastic.

I’ve heard some people say that they do receive the penalty and it certainly feels like it for me. I can empty an entire mag of a cryo gun into some frozen dude’s face, but it takes about half as much ammo when I switch to a non-cryo weapon. Maybe i’m just imagining things, I don’t know.

There’s things like explosive gets 200% multiplicative bonus on frozen enemies, or switching to a fire on flesh gets the 75% bonus. But 2 neutral elements like shock and cryo on flesh should preform the same.

At least that’s what I think Sljm’s findings were.

And shields resist cryo damage so there’s that. Basically everything gets 200%, but other things play roles too.

And when in doubt just go to the dummies and test it.

Pure vanilla copy of the game, so no target dummies for me. If that is true however, then there really isn’t any reason to spec into Cold War.

The point about shielded targets still remains though, despite the gear limitations.

Shock on shields does 6x the damage that cryo on shields does. Lost legion and guardians have more shields than health, so Cold War is amazing for the second half of the game.

If you’re in a vacuum, a shock duality Oz kit boosts elemental damage and DOT chance by over 40%. Cryo duality only boosts DOT chance, so shock does better DPS in a vacuum.

After extensive testing, I have concluded that multiple chances to proc a DOT will not increase the proc rate of Cold War. Unless there’s something unique to the Mining Laser, you probably hit your targets just as their original shock DOT wore off, allowing you to proc a new DOT that appeared to be the extension of the original.