Thoughts on the updated/changed old skill

Some FL4K skills are getting a decent touch up with the upcoming patch. I’ll share some thoughts on them:

1. Dominance

I don’t think this skill still has any reason to exist with the “confuse enemies” purpose, and I fail to see how it fits the actual theme of Master tree at all. However, in the spirit of “I’ll take what I can get”, this is a welcome change. It’s also indicative of the lack of thought behind it, because it has one big problem (at least currently): anti-synergy with Frenzy and He Bites.

Enemies attacking other enemies means they’re not attacking FL4K (which is cool) or their pet. The pet’s capabilities of stacking Frenzy on their own are questionable in the best of scenarios, and to use the ones that are half-decent at it you give up some damage (if going from Spiderant/Skag to Jabber) or a lot of damage (if going from Spiderant/Skag to Loader).

He Bites is an ok damage source and an extremely useful tool for Frenzy stacking. Hurting that skill synergy by grabbing the capstone in the same tree is a problem that I hopefully think doesn’t need further explanation.

This is an issue that would be solved by making dominated enemies count as a pet for Dominance’s duration, and it’s not something new: it has been suggested before, multiple times from different areas of the community. There’s also a chance that would make the converted enemy actually useful battlefield allies in the damage department. This way they could stack Frenzy and benefit from our pet skills.

The other issue is that you can still damage dominated enemies. While this can be both a blessing and a problem, in this case it’s leaning into the problematic side, since you will just end up inadvertently killing dominated enemies. In reality I’m not sure what would feel better in practice since I obviously can’t play with the skill currently. Being able to damage the enemies allows us to immediately kill them for a radiation nova now, which sounds good. But it all feels very counterintuitive.

The added Nova centered on the enemy just feels like some random effect tacked on so the skill does something else. It also has less base damage than the T1 Nova skill of the new tree. While the Nova + Taunt sounds like an interesting interaction, it would likely need a damage + radius adjustment to make it feel really powerful (with hopefully no self damage to either FL4K or pet, that would become a source of issues potentially worse than barrels).

Another thing is that it needs better visual indication of which enemy is dominated. It’s an absolute mess to sort it out in the middle of combat, especially on the takedowns.

2. Shared Spirit


This is a very nice change as long as damage converted still means it’s taking away from the damage received. Potentially, this could mean the skill is a true 50% reduction now, and the pet being healed from it avoids any rare case of you killing the pet by accident (unless using Gamma). However, If the skill doesn’t offer any effective damage reduction to FL4K anymore (which is a possibility), this would actually be a nerf for no reason other than some misguided attempts at solving inexistent pet survivability issues (or existing ones from a year ago).

The threshold for the skill to trigger still seems to be ~30% Health. This could easily be bumped up to 50%, which would make the skill really useful on a much wider variety of loadouts.

3. Hive Mind

The pet bonus damage is worded in a way that really makes it sound like it’s on its own in the formula, or that it works slightly differently. No idea of how it actually works, of course.

It’s a nice change, not much to say about it. The shared damage could go up a bit, since its final value ends at around 13% after applied to the formula. The skill of the same tier in green tree offers better damage reduction alongside a significant dps boost.

This could be the time to talk about some other skills too that could use some touching up.

Ambush Predator looks like a bad conditional joke with hoops compared to a T2 crit damage skill on a character’s new tree. Hunter’s Eye Crit vs. Humans still doesn’t work with Megavore, and is placed at a very bad spot in the formula considering the conditions it’s tied to, making it worse than normal crit skills. Rakk Attack as a whole is a QOL joke compared to MNTIS, that skill is a complete upgrade to it and has so many QOL changes that we’ve been asking for so long.


I can see the point about Dominance since the pet’s aren’t amazing at stacking Frenzy on their own, but it doesn’t make them worse at it so much as it makes them less good. I know that sounds stupid, but the pet will still be attacking the Dominated target anyway unless you direct it away from them, so they will still be in the line of fire stacking Frenzy.

The rework has potential issues, but I think they can be worked around, although it will be a pain to do so. At this point though, that is FL4K in a nutshell.

As for Shared Spirit, I share your concern about the DR being removed for a useless pet heal. I don’t mind the health buff to Pack Tactics, but I feel like Shared Spirit is overdoing when they are releasing an entire skill tree that is supposed to address pet survivability (which hasn’t been an issue in months anyway). If we lost a solid Damage reduction skill for that I’ll be upset.

As for skills I’d like to be touched up, I still think Sic Em’ could use a buff to 50% cooldown and damage. Also, a buff to Grim Harvest to its gun damage so that it’s more deserving of being a tier 5 would be great.


The general problem with blue tree/“pet builds” is just how… inconsistent it all is, regardless of Dominance/individual “pet” skills. Red Fang is supposed to be the “holy grail” of aggro, and yet it is buggy and breaks all. the. time. and causes me to go down. If that’s the case, why should I bother with a “pet” build?

Not to mention, currently all the “pet stuff” is focused on blue tree and yet Gamma Burst is pretty useless outside of making your pet unable to go under 1HP. The damage is negligible, and it STILL doesn’t handle aggro, requiring you to put on Red Fang (and even then, it’s still buggy and gets you downed all the time)…

Unfortunately, I don’t see these fundamental problems being addressed by the above 3 skill changes…


To have the pet follow and attack the dominated target around implies constant use of attack commands and delaing with their clunky nature, not to mention the dominated target will die constantly anyway. The problem here is that we have a capstone directly hurting a synergy of the same skill tree it is in. It is sad that after a year of this skill being in a continuously worse state, the changes it received don’t seem to have much though in them about what would result in it being capstone worthy.

I’ve seen your Red Fang concerns, but the only thing that ever looked wrong there for me was Wotan’s last phase still targeting FL4K, and that is definitely bugged and happens to everyone: it ignores taunt effects (at least as far as attacking goes, whether its “target” is still FL4K I don’t know).

However the rest all looked normal to me, either caught in crossfire or stray bullets of sorts. The taunt has a slight animation effect that plays, it doesn’t trigger 100% immediately on cast, and it also seems to have range/radius dependencies, so if you’re hugging an enemy spawn right next to you while the pet is considerably far-off, you will definitely get targeted first.


I definitely see that, I just think that there wasn’t much more they could’ve done to make the skill useful, and I’m sure we both felt they weren’t going to completely rework the skill (although, they did drastically change Shared Spirit so maybe that assumption was incorrect). At least in this way Dominance is useful, even if it does come with caveats.

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I’m not sure that there is any true redemption for Dominance as a capstone. However this change at least offers some utility.

Hive Mind’s new damage buff being proc system could let it be multiplicative. We will see in a couple weeks I guess.

When I first read the new skill description for Shared Spirit, it worried me because the first thing that occurred to me was that the way the skill card read left some room for interpretation as to whether Fl4k still takes the damage under the new Shared Spirit, or whether the damage taken by Fl4k is reduced as the skill works presently.

Please, please, please GBX, do not change the way Shared Spirit shares damage with the pet. The way SS works makes Deathless Fl4k builds possible. Yes, I know the new shield tree creates some other possibilities for Deathless builds, but please don’t take away the existing Deathless/SS interaction that works so well and creates several interesting build options.

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Sorry to post twice in a row in this thread, and maybe this is OT to the thread itself, but since we are talking about changes to Fl4k’s skill tree, I will mention it again.

GBX devs - can we please, please, PLEASE get the Rakkslag anoint removed as a weapon anoint and added as an augment for Rakk Attack? Like maybe add it to the ROACO augment? Or it actually would be fine to add it to Rakkcelerate as well, since almost no one uses that augment and it would present a compelling reason to spec it.

But can we please get Rakkslag out of the anointment pool? This always should have been an augment to Rakk Attack, not an anointment.


Is there an overview somewhere of all the upcoming skill tweaks (across all characters, unless only Fl4k got them)?

I know Moze has some skills that show inaccurate values, but I’m not sure about the others as I haven’t thumbed through them.

@Rinkles The only way that I have seen the changes to the existing skill trees is to spot them when YTers/streamers briefly show their skill trees. Maybe there have been some of them that covered the changes to the existing skill trees, but for me, I have just had to kind of ninja-observe them. They have been talking a lot about the purple skill trees, but not much about the changes to existing trees.

I would like to see the proposed changes to the existing skill trees publicized by GBX or some streamer/YTer.

Also, I would like to know whether the changes to the existing skill trees are paid DLC, or whether we get those for free. Have they stated this?

In case you didn’t know, the new and updated skill trees are on the official site

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@Rinkles Thank you, obviously I did not know LOL

I would love to see the Health Regen on Turn Tail and Run increased, 1%/point would be a nice increase.

I wonder if they could also get the tooltip for the Jabbers to show the correct values when specced into Barbaric Yawp? Hell as far as that goes we have several tooltips not showing correct values with Big Game.


Yeah, you’re just doing it wrong. gamma burst and other pet skills can be boosted by using certain bonuses, and because it takes from multiple categories you can layer the damage increases in without greatly diminishing the marginal increase, so greatly increased damage.

My pet never had a problem keeping enemies attention, maybe you just need He bites.

On a more general note, I’m hoping the crit hits provided (finally) by the new tree are all being boosted by Go for the eyes.
Also for all the melee only pets that percentage seems really really low, hopefully it applies to ALL pet based attacks and not just gun/melee strikes.

And about dominance yes absolutely , and making dominance trigger on crits is another flub, little better than when it only triggered with melee hits. Actually getting the enemy you WANT to dominant would still be a huge issue unless you were using fade away or GiM. The problem is, this the captstone for the GAMMA BURST tree.

There is one extremely simple way to do this, set it to attack command, give a little overlay so we can actually see which enemy is presently targetted. Hold the button down, move the cross-hair and whoever is being targetted should have a highlight placed over them, then when its on the right one simply release the button and boom dominated, 2 pets on the field.

And since it can only work once anyway just make it work on bosses already, give you a little respite from running for your life to heal, get ammo, deal with the mobs or whatever.

It only lasts what 12 seconds? That’s like 1 immune phase but now we’re immune from them attacking us.

I’m kind of conflicted on the changes, because looking at the changes to hive mind and shared spirit remind me vaguely of an idea I posted and sent to gearbox.

I can’t remember exactly how the skills worked before, but my idea was to create synergy between hive mind, shared spirit, and he bites. I’m not trying to toot my own horn here, its just the way these are written made me think about it.

Especially since He Bites is affected by the hive mind change in a round about way.

If it works as we think it will, hive mind and shared spirit will definitely pay off. For dominance it is a nice change, but I’m still not sure if it’s worth a capstone. I think it needs testing, we don’t know how much aggro dominanced mob will take.

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Do you think enemies taunted by dominated enemies under the new system can check Hidden Machine?

Not sure if it would warrant deep Stalker/Master specs but a nice +3+ HM COM could pay out pretty nicely if this is the case.

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It wouldn’t beat the overall spread boost of a Stalker/Bounty Hunter at all, especially since it’s on a purple class mod.

If you want a comparable example, the same build with maxed Hidden Machine using a DE4DEYE for the 35% V2 as a 10/5 HM “simulation” still has a lower multiplier than a Cosmic Stalker setup at peak, and a much lower one whenever HM isn’t active.


I won’t argue that there are better payouts, I’m just tryna find some synergy with Dominance 2.0 outside of better aggro relief.