Firstly, I would like to preface this by saying I main Rakk Attack. I run a Stalker/Hunter build and use Rakk Attack over F4de Away because I prefer the combat cycle compared to F4de Away’s frankly ridiculous cooldown (I don’t run GR).
But Rakk Attack really needs a rework - because currently, I don’t think it qualifies as an Action Skill. This stems from 2 problems:
- The Rakks don’t do enough damage
- The Rakks don’t do much else BUT damage
At TVHM M3, against flesh enemies with a Stalker COM, the Rakks deal about 25k per Rakk (if you are fighting human enemies). I wouldn’t say that is terrible damage, but it is nowhere near spectacular either - which is problematic since the Stalker is supposed to provide optimum DPS with the Rakks. Furthermore, this damage falls massively against shielded or armored flesh enemies. The Rakks are almost never capable of killing COV badasses unless you have wore them down signficantly already. Almost always, using your guns is a superior option to your Rakks. The only time your Rakks can be a reliable DPS source is if you are using the Rakk Attack or splash damage anointments to boost their damage.
But that really is the smaller problem. It was pretty much a given the Rakk damage was gonna fall away at some point - that has been the case for all non-gear based skills in Borderlands. The bigger problem is the Rakks don’t have much to offer other than damage. And that issue lies with the Augments.
Of the 4 augments, 3 of them are related to Rakk DPS. One makes your Rakk effective against armored enemies, one increases your damage per charge while the last increases the cumulative damage of your charges (while decreasing your overall downtime between these charges). That would be great IF your Rakk was capable to be your primary damage output, but they are currently a secondary source to your guns, which means they actually limit the versatility of Rakk Attack.
Rakk Attack provides no aggro draw, no crowd control, very limited debuff capability (without anointments), limited healing - it basically doesn’t do alot. When Fl4k runs Rakk Attack, he is effectively a no-action skill class, like Hellborn Krieg or Blastmaster Brick - except Fl4k isn’t designed to be that kind of class - he lacks the survivability and QoL such classes generally have.
Alot of the strengths of Rakk Attack arise from the weaknesses of Gamma Burst and F4de Away (namely their cooldown), rather than the actual contribution of the Action Skill. If I were to ask one to list the merits of Rakk Attack and how it influences your gameplay, the list would be very short. Conversely, I could wax lyrical about how amazing Decepti0n, Digi-Jacks, Cold as Ice, Phaselock/grasp are without every comparing to another action skill. Yes, Rakks make great anointment proccers, probably the best in the game, but that is just a plaster over the lack of actual Action Skill interaction Rakk Attack provides. For most builds, one could replace Rakk Attack with an action skill called ‘Anointment proccer - pressing F activates all your anointments. This has a 5 sec cooldown’ and there would be no fundamental difference in gameplay.
Rakk Attack needs to something other than damage. Like maybe create a singularity for every enemy they hit, or Cryo Rakks need to have a guaranteed (or incredibly high) freeze chance, or chain damage capabilities etc. I’m probably not being terribly creative, but there’s lots of things you can do with such an action skil. Currently, they just don’t do much - and things will only go downhill as the difficulty of the game continues to increase with future DLC.