If Amara's Action Skill "Gimmick" Is Meant to be Flexibility, She Could Use Some Changes

Let’s all be honest here, when compared to every other Vault Hunter’s Action Skills and Gimmicks, Amara is… lacking. Our Girl is stuck with a single action skill and augment, meanwhile Flak gets an action skill, two augments, a pet that attacks and buffs, pet variants, and a unique pet command attack. Zane gets two action skills and two augments plus skills the reward him for using two action skills. Moze gets two action skills and two augments and some BL2 style action skill mods in her trees themselves(dome shield, turret, auto mech, etc).

I keep seeing people say that Amara’s gimmick/“strength” is her diversity and flexibility, but well, that just doesn’t show up in gameplay nearly as well as that other stuff, does it? After all, it isn’t like you’re swapping your action skill and augment around on the fly during combat. So, I think some minor changes should be made to truly emphasize Amara’s “flexibility.”

  1. Have Amara’s Action Skills, Augments, and Elements unlock as she levels up independent of skill points invested into any given tree. This lets her be truly flexible in her choice of action skills and augments since she is no longer limited to what’s made available to her in the tree you went down because you liked the skills in it but not the action skills/augments.

  2. Open up a second augment slot for her action skill. Amara’s augment pool is already the smallest of the roster, she has only 5 across all three of her skill trees; let that become a strength by letting her equip two of them. Yeah, she may only have 5 augment choices, but now she can pick any two of them to use with any action skill across any of her skill trees, something the other characters can’t do or even need to spend a skill point to unlock augments.

And that’s it, these two small changes alone would greatly improve Amara’s gameplay and build diversity and truly make her the “flexible” vault hunter choice.


She does technically have 11 Action Skills since she has several versions of each, all of which can equip any mod. Having said that you do make some very good points(if only I could add Allure to my fav build…). The 3 slots on her skill page do seem rather lonely.

Still, she does have some very unique skills and I think she’ll be fine, and pretty strong. Want to take her for a spin before they change the current build.

Amara does feel the most Borderlands 2 out of the 4 new VH’s, but that doesn’t mean that she won’t be fun. After her latest changes she should be a great melee character and overall seems great to just rush in and ■■■■ stuff up. Her gimmick is Action Skill flexibility and Elemental Adaptability, both of which she excels at. The former gives her absurd levels of short-term crowd control on top, if a player chooses so. Also, the Rush mechanic is a nice idea that encourages a player to keep up the momentum from the Action Skill, also the latest change to Avatar made that even more viable as she can keep up her Rush stacks by killing an enemy with her Action Skill, something we should be able to do.

Also, and that is just my personal impression, but to me she seems like a late bloomer, a character that starts weak, but gets going in the later levels. 2 of her 3 Capstones are big game changers (“Blitz” & “Avatar”) and quite indicative of that.

Last but not least she has the potential to be an elemental sadist by letting DoTs spread and kill enemies all over the place. Thanks to the scaling of BL2 this might seem less viable than it could be. Some might be suprised by how strong DoTs are now compared to BL2 (direct comparison: A fire damage over time effect in BL3 at level 10 is almost 3 times stronger than a fire DoTs at Lv 10 in BL2 and that is with the much flatter scaling of BL3). Overall we can expect 3 to 4 times the elemental effectivity than in BL2. It is no BL1 level of broken, but it works, does the job and well.

How so? She’s still limited completely by what trees she goes down and none of that “flexibility” and “adaptability” comes through in actual gameplay. It isn’t like you can swap between your available elements during combat to be truly “adaptable” and for being the “flexible” one, she’s still limited like the other vault hunters in her choices by what tree she went down.

That’s why I think they should lift that limitation for her. Imagine how much more freedom and flexibility you’d actually have if you’d be able to do a, say, Brawl and Fist of the Elements build, because you like the skills and want to melee, but still be allowed to equip Deliverance and augment it with Glamour(or even stillness of mind) without needing to invest into mystical assault when it isn’t part of the build you want to use. Or going for a MA & FistOTElements build but using an action skill or augment from brawl.

That would really open up her options and make her actually flexible.

Not a good point to make as we haven’t seen her with any of her high-end skills yet (except “Guardian Angel” and “Do unto Others”). But it shows that she at least starts rather vanilla. Her flexibility in regards to Action Skills isn’t hard to spot. Yes, you are limited to the skills in your tree, but so is everyone else. Overall she gives you the choice of which Action Skill you want to use. You’re specced into her “Brawl” tree and want to prevent damage? Then you can use “Fracture” to hit a line of enemies in front of you or you can ascend above your targets by using “Downfall”.
Augments in this case give you the option to let your enemies fight against each other or to chain damage on top of your Action Skill by firing off Novas, depending on how you want the situation to resolve.
Element-wise she has the option to use 2 elements in 2 of her trees and both can be accessed after just 5 skill points. I agree that her Mystical Assault-tree could use a second element as well, but the other 2 trees give her the option for a second element very early on.

I like your idea of 2 Action Skill “property”-Augments at the same time, but that would potentially solve Amara as a character rather quickly. Still, the idea is good.

Amara’s “gimmick” is that her augments are not exclusive to any one of her action skills, and that many of her action skill based skills are independent of which action skill she chooses or can be made to work with them through augments. ie, Flexible. Amara can make more use of Phaseslam without investing in to her brawl tree than Zane can his barrier without investing in to Undercover Agent.
On top of that she’s a far more well rounded character with fewer weaknesses. Moze is super DoT vulnerable and her Mech has a long cooldown, Zane will struggle with damage and survival on boss fights with few mobs, Fl4k is very fragile. Amara is easily the bulkiest of the group, and can very consistently buff her damage in any situation. This is what makes her flexible. Flexibility isn’t limited to Action Skill gimmicks.


when the game goes live, Amara mains will surprise everyone. :wink::wink:


What, flak, fragile? Flak has the potential to be one of the tankiest vault hunters. There’s constant health regen, health regen on damage, health regen on kill, health boosts, damage sharing/reduction, and augments that heal flak. Flak is the farthest thing from fragile. And hell, Flak gets many more damages buffs basically for just existing and dealing damage.

Anyway, that aside, yes, Amara is a bit more flexible than the other characters right now, but the entire point of this thread is basically, “Why not make her even more flexible and less limited?” While it isn’t limited to action skills gimmicks, it sure would be nice to have the extra flexibility because if her only thing is “you can put any 1 augment on any 1 action skill!” that isn’t nearly as interesting, fun, or unique as what everyone else has in addition to their action skills, especially when you can lose out on 2 out of her 5 augments if you don’t go down certain trees. She’s kinda flexible now, I’d like for her to be even more flexible.


Fl4k has a lot of healing skills but most of them are very small in percent or short on duration. They’re only really powerful heal is Burst Aid which is locked to 1 Action Skill, deep in the tree, and requires them to stand in a limited area. They’re not going to be out tanking Amara or Zane, and probably not Moze until the Mech is on cooldown.

But why does she need to be more flexible, if she’s already more flexible than everyone else? What’s the point.
You’re also not considering that she just has more action skills in comparison to every one else, they are effectively a second augment. Although I will admit some could probably be workshopped a little more. Fracture seems near identical to Phasecast functionally.

I mean, the point is basically, “Why not?” right? I just think it would really open up build variety for her. It’d be nice to do a brawl/fist of the elements melee build and still be able to take the lower in the tree phasecast versions and pair them with an augment from either of the other trees. Not allowing a second augment slot I could concede on(though in that case I would say, I wish we got more options for action skills, especially phaseslam. You basically only have one choice outside of the “unaugmented” top of the tree version if you wanna do the big slam attack for your action skill) but I’m pretty positive that allowing to amara to freely pick and choose between any of her trees, only gated by what level the skill would normally be unlocked at, would only be beneficial to her and not have many(if any) downsides and would encourage more variety and flexibility.

Oh, and about Fracture, I thought the same thing and asked around on reddit. People were saying that it still maintains the “knockup” effect from phaseslam, and (these things we’re even more unsure off) may travel along terrain better to go through obstacles and possibly leaves a lingering damage area.

What annoys me is that the Tempest skill makes Shock the “right” choice. I feel like the flat bump ought to be for the action skill element you choose.

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I can understand that. If she had other skills that specifically had to do with shock then it could be argued that she has a shock affinity, like moze has fire and zane has cryo, but she has nothing like that. As it is, it seems to only get a bonus boost purely because it is her default element.

I get you. but i was thinking a nice addition to her will be to let her swap elements mid fight in game. will make her more adaptive.

That would also work as a solution to making her more adaptable and giving her something more on par with the other vault hunter’s bonus abilities.

Honestly, the more I think about it, the more I love this and and think this should’ve been in the game as her “bonus” or “gimmick” or whatever you wanna call it.

We already know they have “hold down the action skill button for a different command” functionality from flak, so it should’ve been something like, “Hold down the action skill button and then press one of three buttons to swap to the corresponding element” and when you swap to whatever element you pick, you release an elemental nova of that element around you that knocks enemies back, and then it goes on cooldown for 3-5 seconds or something.

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Funny that I read this post because this was exactly what I was thinking earlier today while looking through the skill trees for the classes. If Amara were allowed to pick two augments, then it would allow for some more flexibility and interesting combinations. Right now, though, it feels quite lacking in comparison with the other classes’ action skills.

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This is interesting, because I felt the exact same way when watching the Amara gameplay videos. For me, it’s not even about the ability to add multiple augments or whatever, it’s about the cooldown rates. The slam activity in particular seemed mildly effective at best, but had an extremely long cooldown rate. I expected the CD of her skills to be more in line with Phaselock from BL2. Instead, it feels like the cool down for such a quick and underwhelming skill is extremely long, making her feel a bit boring to me.


Moze technically only has one action skill. Her one skill has two different weapons and each weapon can only have two of that weapons specific augments.

Also keep in mind the level cap is 50 right now. So a Zane will need to split a good amount of points to have both his action skills tricked out. This makes for a less streamlined skill progression.

Amara gets to start with her shock augment for free (BONUS) rather then leaving players with a non element damage like in BL1
Her Augments coupled with some of her later skills variants are also much more dramatic in terms of the scale of there effect. She is also likely sporting lower CDs for the most part. Moze has over a minute on Iron Bear.
Just saying I feel like Amara will bring more active pain then you thing :smiley:

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I just got done looking at her skill tree and I gotta say Amara is stupid strong. Don’t think of what her skills do individually. Think of what they “can” do together. I would suggest taking a second look at her skill trees. Even with only 48 skill points you can make a lot of things work.

This isn’t about her strength though, I’ve(and the other people I’ve seen also take a similar stance) not called that into question. Its more of a mechanics/gameplay/fun thing. Flak gets a pet, zane gets two action skills that can both be augmented, moze has BL2 style action skill upgrades in her skill trees, amara… can choose her damage type. It just isn’t as exciting as what the other characters have in addition to their action skills.