My name is Nootmad and after a long holiday from the Forums, I am back with Part 1 of my Path to Mayhem write up.
In this weekly (probably as long as I’m not lazy) write-up, we’re gonna go over the absolute fundamentals of Borderlands 3 and Moze, explaining mechanics, action skills, anointments, weapons AND levelling builds to help you stay on top of your game on your journey to level 65 and high mayhem difficulties. Oh, I also made a video version of this writeup too, so if text write ups aren’t your thing, I gotchu. AND! for those who prefer interpretive dance instead, I uh… I got nothing. Sorry <3
So you want to be a Vault Hunter eh?
So. Upon starting the game, you have decided to make the right decision and play Moserah Hayusinian Yan Lun Al Amir Andrayevna. Or Moose Moze for short. And you maybe wondering, well. What do you do from here, to get to the point where you can use the most powerful endgame builds. Well. Lets start with the basics. Upon hitting level 2, you will get access to your action skill. And you can get either Iron Bear, or Iron Cub if you have DLC5. Both have their strengths and weaknesses, and we can go over those now.
Iron Bear is for those who love burst damage and wants to wreak havoc with a giant mech, and Iron Cub are those who prefer more of a summoner/pet style build, where you can get a companion that fights alongside you for a little whole. Both action skills allow the use of different annointments but that’s something we will hold on to for a later post.,
Skill Tree overview
So once you select your action skill, you will see you have 3 or 4 different skill trees, each promoting a different playstyle, and synergising differently with different gear options. I already have made videos on each of Moze’s skill trees, so ill be brief. But before we continue, there’s a few technical words i want to get out of the way. And that is, hardpoints and augments. Hardpoints are the weapons that your Iron bear or iron Cub will use. So, taking Miniguns for an example, is the hardpoint option for the bottomless mags tree. Following from that, we have, Augments. Augments change the way your hardpoint works, whether it be (in the case of miniguns) making it shoot cryo rounds instead of standard kinetic rounds, or turning your grenade launcher, into a freaking nuke. You get the idea. So. You know what hardpoints and augments are, so. What now. Well.
You then have the skill trees themselves, and like I said before each promote a different playstyle\
- The bottomless mags tree promotes a very bullet spam playstyle, giving you lots of mag size and ammo regeneration, with the capstone (aka final skill) ability giving you constant ammo regeneration, allowing you to dish out constant streams of bullets to those who dare stand against you.
- The Demolition woman skill tree focuses on a very… Explosive… Playstyle. Giving you splash damage, iron bear and iron cub damage, and the capstone ability giving any of your guns the chance to do splash damage, which is a critical factor in endgame builds.
Shield of Retribution
The Shield of Retribution tree is one focused on big shields and straight damage, and is an all round solid tree, with the capstone giving you immediate shield restore and damage if your shield breaks.
And finally, we have the bear mother tree, a skill tree focused all around status effect and damage, with the capstone enabling iron cub and iron bear, to last a crazy long time on the battlefield. [/color]
Level 15-20 Early Game Skill Tree recommendation
So. Those are the trees. And now, I’m sure your asking which tree is the best to start with. And the short answer is, do whichever one you feel like you will enjoy the most. However, if you want immediate damage right off the bat, the shield of retribution tree will be your best bet, giving you access to some early game damage reduction, gun damage and access to what is arguable the best Iron bear hardpoint augment in the game, capacitive armatures. So. For the first 15 or so levels you get, id suggest maxing out armoured infantry (putting a single point into security bear to increase survivability of iron bear or iron cub) and also maxing out drowning in brass, for a hefty 60% damage bonus after 3 easy kills. Putting a point into experimental munitions will also give you some nice incendiary damage on a critical hit, to deal bonus damage to health based targets. Overall, This will give you some nice early game bonuses and some decent bonuses to iron bear itself for some extra damage.
Early Game Weapon recommendations
* But, with the early game point investments out of the way, lets talk about what legendary gear you can get by the time you’re level 15. For all intents and purposes, lets assume that you have finally landed on the planet of Promethea, By this point, you would’ve have cleared the droughts on Pandora, as well as potentially the meridian outskirts. This means that you can get a small handful of nice legendaries to use for a little while. The barrage from Buttmunch in the droughts (who spawns after the Side Quest: Skag Dog Days), The Kill o The Wisp from the UnderTaker in The droughts (spawns after The Undertaker side quest), and the Skeksil from Skrakk in Ascension Bluff.
So what exactly are these weapons. Well.
1. The Barrage is a nice Dahl burst assault right that deals a solid amount of damage and is highly accurate for long range engagements.
2. The Kill o Wisp is a powerful Maliwan shotgun that shoots balls of lightning that arc to nearby enemies dealing Damage over Time and extra damage to shielded targets (since its shock element),
3. The Skeksil is an incredibly powerful CoV pistol that can tear through your enemies like butter. And also comes with a bladed attachment so you can stab your enemies with the ferocity of a small army of samurai.
Elemental damage breakdown
Now. Speaking of elemental damage, i think its a good idea to quickly touch how elemental damage can help your damage. In the game, there are 5 different elements, Fire, shock , corrosive, cryo and radiation. Kinetic being the 5th, but also not technically an element. In my video version of this build, I had a fancy little image courtesy of MentalMars, But what you need to know is this.
Fire damage is best for flesh (red bar) enemies, shock is best for shield enemies (blue bar) and corrosive is best for armoured enemies (gold bars). But you might have also noticed the 2 other elements, cryo and radiation. And as you can see, both have their strengths and weaknesses. cryo will slow down enemies and increases your melee damage too frozen targets, and radiation will spread to enemies and enemies that are currently irradiated, will explode, and spread the radiation to nearby enemies, making it a very nice element to use when fighting clusters of enemies. So for early game, fire weapons will be your best bet, but once you get your hands on radiation weapons, you’ll be right as rain (until you start fighting enemies with armour bars). BUT. That’s a problem we will save for another post.
For now, I think this is a nice place to wrap it up. In the next write-up, we’re gonna cover off annointments, relics and a higher level build involving some fancier weapons. Until then though, i hope you guys enjoy this write-up, take care of yourselves. And I’ll see you guys in the next post. See ya!