Overhauling Iron Bear: A Large Scale Restructuring of Moze's Action Skill!

Hello fellow Gunners!!
With Gearbox promising to take a hard look at Iron Bear’s late game viability, I wanted to put forth my idea for a Big Change

TL,DR: Condense several of Moze’s existing weapon Augments into their own stand alone weapons. Change all Iron Bear augments to improve Iron Bear’s behavior as a whole.

First Off:
General IB improvements that should happen regardless of anything else:

  1. Faster entry and exit animations
  2. Base IB health needs to scale better with Moze’s max health
  3. Improved fire rate for IB while Auto Bear is active.

General Configuration:

Iron Bear no longer has weapon Augments.
Instead, all Augments are now Chassis Augments affecting Iron Bear as a whole.

Demolition Woman:

Base Skill: The V-35 with Shaped Charge included by default

  1. Vanquisher Rocket Pod with Active Tracking as default.
  2. Combine Musical Chairs and Lock and Speed Load. A barrage of grenades, with the last grenade in the mag being a singularity. (Encourages coordinating shots between weapons)
  3. Hammer Down Protocol changed to shoot Moze’s equipped grenade mod. Reload time improved. (Rewards having a good grenade mod even while in IB)

A. Auto Bear, with the added option to hold summon button to put Iron Bear next to you.
B. Leaky Reactor: Iron Bear has a radiation aura while active.
C. Target Softening is applied to all IB Weapons.
D. Crash Jets: Iron Bear has a greatly improved jump height. Landing from a high height counts as a slam. (Encourages the usage of Slam relics)

Shield of Retribution:

Base Skill: Rail Gun with Capacitive Armature included by default
4. Bear Fist with Wild Swing included by default.
5. Corrosive Sabot Rounds
6. Bear Hug: Close the Distance, but if you hit a target up close to Iron Bear, it triggers random element Nova.

E. Hell on Rails: Bonus incendiary damage and fuel drain on all IB Weapons
F. Shock Hammer: Slightly improved fire rate and bonus shock damage to all IB Weapons
G. Defibrillator: Passively restore Ally shields near IB and automatically revive any allies that go into FFYL while within range.
H. Security Bear, but IB gets a copy of Moze’s equipped shield.

Bottomless Mags:

Base Skill: Mini Gun with Let Off Some Steam on by default.
7. Salamander with Fuel Economy equipped by default
8. Lobber: Combine Corrosive Warfare and Molten Roar, launching a volley of corrosive blobs that leave puddles behind.
9. Exploding Bullet Mini Gun

I. Dakka Bear, but it gets a second copy of Iron Bear’s weapons. (Basically, you get a second IB, but without steering. Seems fair since you are asking a second player to give up their own DPS)
J. Inert Dermal Plating: Iron Bear gets a second health bar and is resistant to Corrosive Damage. (Good if you use the Lobber)
K. Coolant Leak: Reduced Fuel drain to IB’s weapons and bonus Cryo damage for all allies near IB.
L. Bullet Sponge: IB has 40% a chance to absorb ammo fired at it and return it to Moze and all allies in range. Enemies are more likely to target IB.


  1. This doesn’t change the number of weapons and augments that are equipped to IB, nor does it change the total number of action skill options.
  2. Let’s the player decide if they want to focus on more damage or survivability for IB.
  3. You usually don’t have to sacrifice the weapon type that you like just to get access to a relevant weapon element.
  4. IB can provide a much better support presence on the battle field.


  1. I will admit, without tweaking the numbers, some of these options are probably way too strong.
  2. This would undoubtedly take considerably longer to implement than any changes they are already looking at for Iron Bear.

One last thing, and this is important…

Thanks again Gunners!
And please let me know what you think below :slightly_smiling_face:

PS: A special thanks to @MrChipsMeridian for offering feedback on the original idea behind this.


so first off.
I like the current enter exit animations as is. I think they add a proper feel of I am entering/exiting a mech and as long as I dont get bugged to immediately exit the mech it gives me at least the perception of brief invulnerability. Nor do I feel that tweeking the animations will significantly change any of the actual issues in using IB

Scaling Health seems like a reasonable idea

shooting the same grenades as your mod changes the current uses I have for IB where I can change to a significantly different weapon configuration just by using IB so this drastically changes game play and I am not convinced it’s for the better.

Having an ability to just summon iron bear without having to get inside is glorious and I support this 1000% !

adding more mobility options to IB (jumping, brief flying even sliding ) seems like it would add a tremendous amount of fun in addition to practicality.

modifying the shield in IB based on your shield mod is one way to get a lot more out of Iron Bear’s shield that could be fun

it’s a solid plan and a lot of work has gone into thinking it up so kudos I hope I dont come off as too negative.


I appreciate all feedback, even if it doesn’t agree with me, so no worries!

Also, your point about not speeding up the animation is excellent.
I honestly forgot that it gives you invincibility frames.


I feel like IB should have a benefit from your weapons or make it so you can equip IB with two weapons wich give stats or some sort to the mounted guns.

I just want that gear is important for IB, so you can also farm for IB and can do A LOT more builds with him.

I was thinking about that when putting this together.
I don’t think Iron Bear should get copies of Moze’s actual guns as weapons for a couple reasons:

  1. Zane’s Digi Clone already does that
  2. Iron Bear becomes less about you piloting a mech, and more about you getting to just be Moze but with more armor. (And honestly, I think we should save that for when we get an Iron Man type VH in BL4 :stuck_out_tongue: )

The more I think about it, the more I think Iron Bear should do less gun damage than Moze herself can when running around with Legendary weapons.
But, in exchange for that Iron Bear needs to have excellent durability and utility.

They need to boost the number of times Auto Bear fires before self destructing. He barely fires any Vanquisher rockets…


I’ll add that to the basic things that need improving in the main post

Gonna be honest, I always hate these posts. Always.

But I absolutely loved your ideas for Augments/Modifications. Like. A lot.

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Thank you… I think

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I do want to see Auto Bear become an action skill to give Moze an action skill that isn’t jumping into iron bear. This can help Moze allot with anointed gear.

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Yeah, I think that’d be a solid improvement to Moze’s ability to react with Annointment effects.
As it stands, you have to preempt a bosses phase change far enough in advance that you don’t end up wasting an annointment while the boss is immune to damage.

I’ve always been crying man tears for a IB buff. But the more i think on, less sure i get. I mean, how are they going to do this properly WITHOUT butcher her other builds, mainly her survivabilty. I know it is impossible to have both, it would be to easy to exploit. How are they going to make iron bear a viable choice to build around when he essentially gives moze invincibility for the entire duration. Are they going to shift the tank focus from her to ib? Will ib be the sustain she needs while herself on her own be squishy? What would this do to her other builds that doesn’t use ib?

I suppose they could make her and ib’s HP shared and treat it as mutation did for krieg in BL2… when you activated his action skill near death, he would get instantly full heal and i-frames. This could work for IB aswell to ensure he doesn’t get one shot the second you jump in at low health. If he do break down, moze would need to be put in FFYL imidiately.

And his damage… what is considered acceptable damage for him? Will he compete with what moze is able to do now?

IB is such a weird skill because of what you’d expect from a big battle mech.

Grwat suggestions in here, let’s hope that they can make some cool changes soon

If IB isn’t changed significantly, then his damage ought to be considerable. The Rocketeer and Bear Trooper mods don’t buff Moze’s damage in significant ways, and competing with them we have Bloodletter and Blast Master which each offer roughly a 100% damage improvement. IB should make up for the difference somehow, otherwise there’s going to be no incentive to use those mods.

And even in general, for other builds, IB still has to offer something that improves upon what Moze is doing, otherwise we’re not gonna use our action skill.

I love these ideas, but I think Hammer Down Protocol could be very overpowered. Maybe it would be better if IB occasionally shots one of her nades (like every third or fourth shot) instead of all the time?

Btw, for Crash Jets, I believe if IB lands on top of an enemy he does a lot of damage to them already (even more than melee), so this is a great idea even if they don’t add Slam to it.

Honestly, the more I think about it, the more I think that IB should not be as huge damage dealer.
I think the focus of IB needs to be utility or survivability .
The idea behind having the augments configured this way is that the player gets to make that choice.

Running an Atom Balm? Give IB the Rad Aura with Bear Hug
Going for a deathless shield build? Auto Bear with Defribrillator
Running a team with a Cryo Zane? Let his barrier shield you and give him bonus cryo with Coolant Leak.
Power leveling your little brother? Put on Dakka Bear and let him share in your glory!

By making each augment feel impactful, but limiting the number you can equip, which way you choose to build Iron Bear can actually feel like it matters!

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My thought with having it this way:
If base Moze can throw 10 grenades a minute with an Ogre and Means of Destruction, why would the player stop doing that to get into Iron Bear?

Like, seriously, you spend so much time farming up the best gear you can, and then hop into IB and have zero access to any of it?

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Fair point. Why didn’t I think of that when I was just saying IB can’t be worse than Moze to be a good action skill? /facepalm

That’s what i’ve started to lean towards aswell. His lack of survivability is the main concern, would it be nice to be able to deal some damage? for sure. but i don’t think that’s what he should be about either. i think he should be her second sustain skill, making vampyr a little less mandatory. his augments should indeed focus on more utility based things like crowd control, party buffs and more survivability. giving him access to moze shield would be a great, but will it be a problem because zane can do that aswell?

this might trigger some people… but i’d say remove reload from iron bear entirely. he’s not even doing great damage now, the need to constantly reload just feels weak… he’s a tank, surely he got big reserves?

making him interact more with moze gear would be great aswell, atom balm suggestion sounds brillant.

IB focused class mods may need a rework entirely, they are not really great pics even for a 100% iron bear focused build imo.

if we compare the actions skills of all the other VHs, none of them really does amazing DPS - though i guess you could argue that amaras action skills can make her deal massive amount of damage, well, i guess FL4K too now that i think about it hehe.

on my moze, i always go for auto bear, i try to take atleast some perks to help iron bear be a little more useful - he’s not entirely worthless outside slaughter house either, honestly. but that’s content that really doesn’t “matter” much, right? he’s not a boss killer either. When i’m doing slaughter house i use iron bear to escape, if i’m about to die i hop into IB and run the other way - that’s just feels wrong to me. a tank like him should be able to hold his ground, and control the battlefield a bit - hold the line so to speak until moze get time to recoup.

love your ideas in OP, well written and thought out !!

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Many people have said that Iron Bear having health, fuel, and reloads really feels like one too many shackles on it’s sustain.

Crazy question:
Why doesn’t Iron Bear gain any of the benefits of Moze’s increased magazine sizes/fire rates/ammo regen?
Imagine a Bottomless Mags Moze having an Iron Bear that can shoot weapons longer and faster.

I’ve really waffled on whether Auto Bear should be included by default in the Action Skill.
I lean towards yes, so long as annoints still work properly.

I did think about that a bit, and I don’t think it’s all that bad. To get two shield effects at the same time, you’d need to use both your augments on it (Auto Bear and Security Bear). And if you don’t get Auto Bear, it just means you get a good shield while in IB.

Really, it all comes back to trying to make each augment choice feel impactful

Thank you, and I really appreciate the feedback!

Yeah, that would’ve been dope. I wish moze’s build had more reflection on iron bear, the augments doesn’t even feel special - i know it would be a lot to ask for but seeing as iron bear is the only action skill, wouldn’t it be cool if he dynamically changed as you invested more into respective trees. I suppose a bit like wilhelm in TPS?

Say, you go deep into a tree, IB unlocks passives automatically when you reach a new tier. So instead of investing skill points into IB, you’d unlock them naturally the deeper into a tree you go. I’m just dreaming here obviously, this is a complete rework of both her skill trees and IB. But, could’ve been cool imo.

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