Top Gear 4 Fl4k the Beastmaster (Community Guide)

Table of Contents

  1. Assault Rifles
  2. Pistols
  3. Shotguns
  4. SMGs
  5. Sniper Rifles
  6. Heavies
  7. Grenades
  8. Shields
  9. Artifacts
  10. Class Mods

As with most traditional Top Gear guides, you will notice the guns and weapons here are classified as either Top Gear or Honorable Mention. Top Gear perform very well at M4 even at the toughest circumstances (Takedown, Slaughter Shaft) or are exceptional bossing weapons either due to certain synergies or just raw power. Honorable Mentions still perform very well at M4, but either fall away at the hardest arenas or require other specific pieces of gear to be efficient.


Assault Rifles


Bekah

Returning from BL2, this time with Legendary rarity, the Bekah is as powerful as ever. A Jakobs Assault Rifle which fires a single pellet which splits into 3 after a fixed distance. At the right distance, this absolutely shreds mobs and bosses. Leave no Trace can help extend its magazine size, while Two Fang can substantially increase its damage per shot.

Elements: :no_entry_sign:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Completing all of Hammerlock’s Hunts. Obtainable once per character.
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang

The Dictator

A legendary Vladof Assault Rifle which fire 3 or 6 projectiles in a horizontal spread. When using the Bipod alternate fire mode, this pellet count can increase to a whooping 7 or 14 projectiles, which combined with its high fire rate results in an absolute ridiculous DPS potential. However, normally this dps is highly theoretical. The horizontal spread means it is nigh impossible to land all the pellets on a target, let alone on crit. Furthermore, the reduced movement speed of the Bipod mode makes it highly impractical for mobbing. Fl4k’s F4de Away negates many of these weaknesses. Just run up to any boss, switch to Bipod mode, activate F4de Away, and watch them disappear. The normal firing mode also has amazing synergy with Head Count, and is one of the best weapons to reduce your Gamma Burst or F4de Away cooldowns.

Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Guerillas in the Mist, Unblinking Eye

Rowan’s Call

A Legendary Assault Rifle that upon scoring a critical hit, ricochets 2 bullets to the nearest enemy while adding 2 bullets to your magazine. The Rowan’s is amazing on Fl4k because Megavore and F4de Away allow them to automatically score critical hits, hence proccing the special effect all the time. Its special effect negates the need to ever reload during F4de Away, allowing you to maximize its short duration. The Rowan’s also has great synergy with elemental ASE anointments, which multiply the projectile, increasing its mass killing capabilities. The Lucian’s Call is a decent alternative - boasting greater ease of use, though its upfront DPS is lacking at Mayhem 4.
Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Guerillas in the Mist, Unblinking Eye, Two Fang

Honorable Mentions

Q-System

A non-unique Assault Rifle manufactured by Atlas. The Cost-Effective Q system fires 2 pellets at the cost of 1 ammo, and each of these pellets have an exceptionally high base damage. In addition, it possesses good accuracy, handling and magazine size. The Q system may not have any gimmicky mechanics, but it shines as a reliable and easy to use weapon in any situation – and sometimes that’s all you need. The Q-system can be obtained as world drop, though Earl’s Shop is a good source for anointed variants.

Elements: :no_entry_sign:
Best Prefix: Cost-Effective
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: -

Carrier

The Carrier possesses fairly average stats as far as Assault Rifles go. Upon impacting an enemy however, it spawns an additional projectile which homes in on the nearest enemy. While this is normally not very powerful, its power can be exponentially increased by equipping elemental anointments, which allows it to spawn an additional projectile per element. The advantage is two fold - for large spawns of enemies, targeting the toughest one allows the additional projectiles to wipe out the peripheral weaker enemies. In absence of other enemies, these projectiles will home on the original target, exponentially increasing single target damage. However, without elemental anointments, the Carrier is underwhelming.
Elements: :no_entry_sign:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop, Judge Hightower
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang

Alchemist/Stranger

A legendary Assault Rifle manufactured by Torgue. The Alchemist only possesses a sticky firing mode, and while the stickies themselves cannot score critical hits, the detonations can if landed on critical spots. The Alchemist has a greater fire rate compared to other Torgue Assault Rifles, and deals bonus shock splash damage on detonation – giving it very high potential DPS on shielded/armored flesh mobs if you have a good trigger finger. However, it also inflicts shock splash damage on the user for every shot fired. This can be negated by the use of the Legendary Transformer shield, and in fact the Alchemist becomes a decent survival buff to Fl4k. In absence of a Transformer, it is suicidal to use the Alchemist in mobbing – the Stranger is a competent alternative.

Elements: :fire:
Best Prefix: Double-Penetrating
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: -


Pistols


Maggie

A returning Legendary from BL2, the Maggie is a legendary Jakob’s shotgun masquerading as a pistol. Mashers are an iconic part of the BL franchise that have made their return in BL3. Mashers fire 5 pellets instead of 1 with reduced damage per pellet, achieving much higher theoretical DPS as compared to a Marshal or Peacekeeper. The Maggie is basically a souped-up Masher, gaining an additional pellet a much bigger magazine size. The Maggie is incredibly powerful, shredding regular mobs and badasses. Even bosses fall by its power. While it may not gain benefit from Two Fang as other other Jakobs revolvers, the Maggie more than compensates with sheer upfront stopping power and superior synergy with Head Count. The aptly named Robo-Melter Masher is corrosive and an excellent alternative for robots or armored enemies.
Best Prefix: Dastardly
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Leave no Trace, Second Intention, Head Count

Craps

At first glance, this legendary Torgue pistol may seem fairly ordinary, boasting good but not exceptional stats (since it cannot come with the double-penetrating prefix). But the Craps possesses an approximately 50% chance to fire a bonus shot with 5 projectiles instead of 1, which dramatically increases its DPS. Unusually, Two Fang does not merely increase the pellet count of these bonus shots by 1, but doubles it, allowing 10 projectiles to be fired at once. Both the Impact and Sticky firing modes are powerful, but Fl4k tends to shine with the Sticky mode. Leave no Trace allows for the small magazine to be extended while Megavore and F4de Away allow for the wide spread of the bonus shots to more easily score critical hits.

Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Handsome Jackbot (DLC1 required)
Recommended Skill Synergies: Leave no Trace, Two Fang, Megavore

Honorable Mentions

King’s Call/Queen’s Call

Splainer/Holey Man/Linoge

The Splainer and Holey Man is a non-unique pistols manufactured by COV. These pistols possesses exceptional magazine size and good stats, but where it shines is with the Moar prefix, which allows them to fire 2-3 pellets at the cost of increased ammo consumption. The Holey Man has higher potential DPS has the Splainer, but has a short round-up time and tends to be more ammo hungry. Much like the Q system, the Moar Splainer and Holey Man are simply straightforward gems which get the job done.

The Linoge is the Legendary variant of the Splainer, and boasts a higher pellet count (3-5) and fire rate balanced by a greatly reduced magazine size. On AS end, its fire rate and repair time are further increased. It possesses crazy burst DPS, procs Head Count a ton and melts bosses in GiTM. It also has great synergy with Rakk Attack, which allows its special effect to be active basically all the time. It is very ammo-hungry though, so it may be more suitable as a side-arm.
Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: Moar
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop

Carbuncle

The Carbuncle is basically a Torgue Masher. Like all alien barreled pistols, the initial shot of the Carbuncle does little damage – the card damage is reflected in a delayed explosion of pure splash damage. The Carbuncle possesses a lower fire rate compared to other alien pistols, but compensates by having a dramatically increased pellet count of 5 to 9(!) pellets. The ammo consumption increases according to the pellet count, making it ammo intensive. It does however, have amongst the highest damage-per shot of any weapon in the entire game. The Carbuncle possesses great synergy with Head Count – both the initial projectiles and delayed explosion register as critical hits, allowing 18 critical hits to be scored in a single shot. Leave no Trace substantially increases its sustained DPS.
Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Leave no Trace, Head Count

Unforgiven

The Unforgiven has a dramatically reduced fire rate compared to its counterparts, but more than compensates with its insane bonus critical hit of up to +432%. The Unforgiven has great synergy with Two Fang and base F4de Away – and can do some crazy things when used in conjuct with the Overkill GR perk. Do note that only true critical hits scored in F4de Away will receive the critical bonus. On the more cheesy side of things, swapping to the Unforgiven is also a great way to further increase the DPS of your Torgue stickies.
Elements: :no_entry_sign:
Best Prefix: Dastardly
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang

Lucky Seven

The Lucky Seven possesses a good magazine size but low base stats. Upon reload, the Lucky Seven has a chance to roll a unique special effect: Splash damage, Auto-crit, Full-auto, Elemental (Shock) or fire x7 pellets (with no reduction in base damage). It is possible to roll several of these effects at once, which can result in crazy combinations and some of the highest potential DPS in the game. However, naturally the power of this gun is highly RNG dependent, and without the ‘7’ roll, tends to be highly underwhelming. Terror anointments with ammo regeneration can be used to extend usage of a favorable roll.
Elements: :no_entry_sign:
Best Prefix: Iron-Willed
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Scraptrap Prime, DLC1 World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Leave no Trace, Second Intention, St4ckbot


SMGs


Cutsman

The Maliwan Cutsman has exceptional base damage far surpassing similar SMGs which is balanced by a reduced fire rate. Its true power, however, lies in its red-text effect. Instead of firing regular projectiles, the Cutsman fires a slow-moving beam like projectile which extends laterally as it travels forward. This allows it to hit larger enemies several times within a single shot, drastically increasing its DPS. On large enemies with small critical spots, Megavore shines in increasing the weapon’s DPS. Two Fang can mutliply the projectiles fired. Do note that the Cutsman does not benefit from the pseuo-crit bonus of F4de Away.
Elements: :fire: corrosive :zap:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Borman Nates, World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang, Megavore

Ion Laser

A Legendary Maliwan SMG (yes this is a trend) - the Ion Laser functions similarly to the non-unique Quasar, firing an energy beam which has continuous damage. However, upon releasing the trigger, the Ion Laser fires a volley of between 1-6 rockets depending on how long the beam has been fired. These rockets are incredibly potent with a wide splash radius, allowing for excellent burst damage against tougher enemies. The trick to maximizing the Ion Laser’s power is to spam your trigger finger upon when firing the rockets, which allows several volleys of rockets to be fired, maximizing the bang for your buck.
Elements: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang, Megavore

Honorable Mentions

Night Hawkin’

Like all Dahl SMGs, the Legendary Night Hawkin boasts exceptional handling, accuracy and base damage. At first glance, the Night Hawkin may seem inferior to a well-parted Wolfhound, but the burst-fire firing mode of the Night Hawkin’ possesses no burst delay (making it far superior to full-auto variants). The Night Hawkin’ also transforms into a whole ‘nother beast at night - whereby instead of shooting a single cryo projectile, it fires 3 projectiles with bonus incendiary damage, which allows it to achieve DPS surpassing any SMG but the Cutsman. That said, during the day, the Night Hawkin’ is fairly mediocre - its RNG dependence means other SMGs may be more reliable.

Elements::snowflake:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Handsome Jackbot (DLC1 required)
Recommended Skill Synergies: -

Kyb’s Worth

The Kyb’s Worth is a powerful legendary Maliwan SMG with several powerful perks. It fires an additional projectile, and upon killing an enemy, spawns a ring which provides health regeneration. These perks are balanced by an unusual firing pattern. That said, the pattern is easy to get used to and should not deter a casual player. The main value of the Kyb’s Worth is in its stopping power and ammo efficiency. The healing ring provides extremely powerful health regeneration, but is not especially practical in tougher mobbing situations.
Elements: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Megavore

Crossroad

A Legendary SMG manufactured by Hyperion. The Crossroad fires 3 projectiles at a cost of 2 ammo per shot in a 3-round burst. This allows it to send a lot of projectiles down line very quickly. The Crossroad is basically an SMG-shotgun, and thus should be used as such. At close range, with all the projectiles on crit, things die very quickly. The high projectile-per-second gives the Crossroad good synergy with Head Count. It does however tend to burn through its magazine very quickly, and its reload speed isn’t the best. Second Intention is definitely recommended.
Elements: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: Hostile
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Second Intention


Shotguns


Bangstick

A non-unique shotgun manufactured by Torgue. While the Impact firing mode boasts remarkable damage, the Sticky mode is where this weapon truly shines. A Double Penetrating Bangstick has up to 18 pellets, each of which increases its damage by +4%. - a single shot can boost damage by 72%. With Leave no Trace, one can stack this damage to ludicrous amounts - which can be buffed even further by F4de Away. Given each sticky can crit twice (on application and detonation) and the high pellet count, the Bangstick has amazing synergy with Head Count.

Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: Double Penetrating
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Leave no Trace, Head Count, F4de Away

Brainstormer

The Brainstormer’s low base damage and being locked to shock element makes it seem rather unimpressive. However, when the Brainstormer procs a dot, it will chain shock Tesla coils to nearest enemies which hit many times per second. It is not uncommon for these chains to kill several enemies before the initial one is dead. Fl4k’s Megavore and F4de Away allows for the Tesla chains to crit, substantially increasing their DPS - and more importantly allowing them to synergize with Fl4k’s other skills. Each chain deals ten ticks of damage - and hence with Megavore and with Head Count, can cooldown F4de Away and Gamma Burst in seconds. It also has amazing synergy with Leave no Trace, which massively extends its magazine.

Elements: : :zap:
Best Prefix: Cash-Infused
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Leave no Trace, Head Count, Megavore

Stagecoach/Scattergun

The Stagecoach is a series of non-unique Jakobs Shotguns. While most commonly seen with 9-13 pellets, with the correct parts, a Stagecoach can achieve 21 or even 25 pellets, albeit at a higher ammo consumption. The Stagecoach possesses high damage per shot - but can also become a DPS machine on Fl4k’s hands due to its synergy with Leave no Trace. Keep scoring critical hits and you basically will never have to reload - which allows you to destroy badasses and even bosses, given favorable modifiers. Scatterguns tend to possess slightly lower base damage and effective fire rate than Stagecoaches, but more than compensate with their reduced ammo consumption and larger magazine size, making them an excellent alternative for mobbing.
Elements: :no_entry_sign:
Best Prefix: Dastardly
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Leave no Trace, Head Count, F4de Away

Honorable Mentions

Projectile Recursion

The Projectile Recursion is a Legendary alien barrel shotgun manufactured by Maliwan. It boasts average damage and has a fairly cumbersome charge time. The true power of the Recursion lies in its synergy with bonus elemental damage anointments, which can be found on the gun itself, or on grenades and shields. As part of a perhaps unintended mechanic, the additional elemental damage registers as an additional projectile, which massively increases the number of ricochet projectiles spawned, allowing entire spawns to be decimated by a single shot when several of these anointments are active. Rakk Attack is ideal for constant upkeep of these bonuses. That said, without these anointments, the Recursion will be a fairly unremarkable weapon - so don’t leave the house without them.

Elements: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: Auditing
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Rakk Attack, Two Fang, Megavore

Protuberance

The alien barreled Torgue shotgun, the Protuberance fires a projectile of pure splash damage which on impact, produces 3 more projectiles which flower from the original point of impact. While the initial impact is already very powerful, the additional projectiles from the Protuberance allows it to make quick work of even badasses and anointed enemies. In F4de Away, all these projectiles will score critical hits, allowing it to shred bosses as well. That said, the Protuberance does have a high propensity for killing the player, though if used in conjunct with a Transformer or Red Suit, these can actually create powerful synergies.

Elements: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang, Megavore


Sniper Rifles


Wedding Invitation

The Wedding Invitation is an incredibly powerful Jakobs Sniper. It is always incendiary, deals bonus splash damage, and on crit, ricochets 2 cryo splash projectile and restores ammo to the magazine. A complete monster of a Sniper which shreds Anointed and COV Badasses, and even robots while being incredibly ammo efficient. Despite its low fire rate, it is probably Fl4k’s strongest sniper for bossing as well. Problem is its a limited time item, so if you didn’t get one during the Broken Hearts event, your only alternative is through trading with other players.

Elements: :fire:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Reward for destroying 100 hearts in the Broken Hearts Event
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang

Lyuda

The Legendary Vladof Sniper Rifle needs little introduction. The Lyuda is effectively the same as it was in BL2 – firing a projectile that splits horizontally into 3 after a fixed distance. The Lyuda is even more powerful in BL3 because the horizontal spread is much tighter, making it more flexible than its predecessor. The Lyuda is fully-automatic and boasts an unfairly high fire rate. Combined with its special effect, the Lyuda can crank out some crazy DPS. Basically, go get one, and watch badasses and bosses disappear. While the Lyuda’s Fire Rate is higher than LnT proc rate, it still helps in ammo conservation of this ammo-hungry beast. Take note, if using a class mod with +4 or +5 Two Fang, the single-pellet version may be preferred.

Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: Annexed, Vicious
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Reward for completing all of Zer0’s bounties, World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang

Monocle/Muckamuck

On the opposite end of the spectrum, we have Jakobs Snipers, which exemplify the manufacturer’s mantra of “if it took more than one shot…”. Jakobs Snipers all possess high base damage and crit (+130%) at the expense of fire rate. All Jakobs Snipers have excellent synergy with the Overkill GR perk. Two Fang and the DE4DEYE Class mod’s perk can further increase their damage per shot. The Monocle is the legendary Jakobs Sniper which has drastically reduced base damage, but a +250% critical bonus while ADS. This allows the Monocle to achieve really high damage per shot if you are a good sharpshooter and is probably the best Jakobs Sniper for general mobbing. However, this comes with several caveats. Firstly, a Muckamuck only does about 20% less on crit, meaning their field performance are almost identical – but does not suffer penalties when firing from hip. Secondly, F4de Away critical bonus applies after the critical hit calculation, which means its effect on the Muckamuck’s damage is more dramatic – while the boost is actually fairly negligible with the Monocle.
Elements: :no_entry_sign:
Best Prefix: Iron-willed, Dastardly
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang, Turn Tail and Run

Honorable Mentions

Headsplosion

The Headsplosion is a Jakobs Sniper Rifle which upon scoring a critical hit, ricochets 3 pellets towards the nearest enemies. The Headsplosion’s main and ricochet pellet also deal bonus kinetic splash damage. However, these perks come at the cost of base damage and critical damage compared to comparative Jakobs snipers. Within F4de Away, the Headsplosion is incredibly potent as the ricochet pellets (and their splash) can now score guaranteed pseudo crits - and it is not uncommon to see 3 or even 4 enemies fall to a single shot. This makes it one of the most efficient options for base F4de Away. Its reduced crit is normally a bane for other classes, but given F4de Away’s critical bonus applies after the critical hit calculation, this diminishes the crit penalty. It must be noted that while the Headsplosion may well surpass the Muckamuck and Monocle in efficiency - this only holds true with the extra kick from the Overkill GR perk.

Elements: :no_entry_sign:
Best Prefix: Dastardly
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Manvark


Heavies


While Heavy weaponry tends to be less practical in mobbing situations, Fl4k possesses several skills which help increase their power and viability. Heavies tend to have high ammo consumption but lower fire rates - and many tend to hit several times within a single shot. In conjuct with Megavore/F4de Away, this gives them synergy with Leave no Trace, which helps to conserve their ammunition. Furthermore, many unique Heavy weaponry have firing patterns which makes landing crits difficult - thus Megavore and F4de Away can greatly amp their DPS. That said, if using Heavies in mobbing, an alternate means of ammo return is recommended, such as a Big Boom Blaster.

Quickie/Hedgehog

Torgue Launchers possess the highest sticky damage of all Torgue manufacture, balanced by their smaller magazine size and smaller ammo pool. Well parted Hedgehogs and Quickies have between +55% or +75% per gyro stuck. If using the double version, this means each subsequent shot increases the damage of each sticky by +150%. Leave no Trace can greatly extend the number of shots before reloading, while Two Fang increases the number of stickies per shot. This can result in insane burst DPS potential on bosses. While the Quickie’s increased fire rate results in overall increased DPS, the Hedgehog can be more reliable if not using a COM which buffs Leave no Trace. The x2 version is vastly superior, not only possessing greater upfront DPS, but multiplicatively increasing the chance for Leave no Trace to return ammo.
Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: Potent
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Leave no Trace, F4de Away, Unblinking Eye, Two Fang

ION CANNON

The ION CANNON is a (hilariously overpowered) Vladof Rocket Launcher. It operates similarly to the alien-barreled Bagronk, except with more than 10x the base damage. To compensate, the weapon possesses a variable charge time - the weapon damage increases the longer you hold dow the trigger. With a proper build and F4de Away, even a non-anointed Ion Cannon is capable of one-shotting just about any boss in the game. The Ion Cannon has a hefty ammo consumption (6-7), thus Leave no Trace is highly recommended to extend its magazine or to regenerate ammo (using HS grenades). A means of recovering rocket ammo, like a Big Boom Blaster, can also be helpful.
Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: Annexed
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Fabricator MKII
Recommended Skill Synergies: F4de Away, Two Fang, Leave no Trace

Lump

Another Heavy manufactured by Torgue (yes this is going to be a trend), the Lump is the alien barreled non-unique Torgue Launcher. The Lump has a charge time, and fires a large orb that upon impact deals high damage over a decent radius. The Lump’s projectile will also fire out beams which target’s enemies along its trajectory - if the orb does not impact any enemies or surface it will then fire out several rockets towards the marked enemies. This secondary ability of the Lump allows it to kill several enemies in a single shot. The damage of the orb, beams and the secondary rockets are all increased by Megavore and F4de Away. The Lump is incredibly ammo hungry, consuming 5 ammo per shot. While you will run out of ammo quickly, Leave no Trace helps to ensure you always have at least 1 ammo in your magazine. @nodreamsonlygoals Stealth Bomber Build is an excellent showcase of this Heavy’s power and viability in mobbing.

Elements: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: Shredded
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Recommended Skill Synergies: Leave no Trace, Head Count, Megavore, Two Fang

Honorable Mentions

Nukem

One of BL2s most iconic launchers, the Nukem does its namesake justice, possessing high base damage and an extreme splash radius. It is extremely potent within F4de Away, allowing for it to score pseudo crits and wipe out entire mobs of enemies at once. Two Fang and the DE4DEYE Com can further increase its single shot potential. The Overkill GR perk allows for the full power of the Nukem to be exploited - allowing it to be a badass and boss masher as well.

Elements: :no_entry_sign:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: -
Recommended Skill Synergies: F4de Away, Two Fang, Megavore, Leave no Trace

Scourge

A powerful legendary Torgue Launcher, the Scourge fires a single rocket of slow velocity that produces smaller rockets along its trajectory. The number of rockets increases by time and distance travelled and home towards enemies. The Scourge’s true power is revealed against bosses with large critical hit spots, whereby its potency can even match a fully charged Ion Cannon - though those are far and few between. F4de Away and Megavore allow for the Scourge to do good work in mobbing situations by greatly increasing the damage of the child rockets. That said, the Scourge is extremely ammo hungry, making it useful as a sidearm at best.

Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: -
Recommended Skill Synergies: F4de Away, Two Fang, Megavore


Grenades


Most Fl4k builds out there don’t use grenades because they don’t have alot of synergy with him. While Fl4k is perhaps the class which can boost grenade damage the most, courtesy of his universal damage skills and anointment synergy, most grenades simply aren’t viable for damage at M4. Hence, the grenades listed here are those with good utility. But under most circumstances, one should prioritize grenades based on their anointments, as the elemental anointments on grenades are very potent with Rakk Attack builds.

Hunter Seeker

On grenade throw, the Hunter Seeker spawns a drone equipped with a fast firing machine gun which seeks out the nearest enemy. While the bullets itself don’t deal great damage, they are useful for proccing various of Fl4k’s perks. It can activate kill skills on demand when paired with a Bounty Hunter COM, making it useful for slow firing weapons. If specced into Megavore, these bullets can crit and will activate Leave no Trace and are relatively adequate at reducing cooldown with Headcount. If using slow firing weaponry, the Hunter Seeker is useful in maintaining Furious Attack Stacks.

Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Parts: -
Drop Location:-

It’s Piss

The It’s Piss Grenade provides a 20% debuff to any enemy damaged by it. While Fl4k generally doesn’t need the additional DPS, it is useful for armored badasses and anointed enemies, which can slow down your mobbing rhythm. In addition, the capability to shed any dot effects on throw is helpful for Fl4k, who conventionally lacks any regeneration capable of combating strong DOTs.
Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Parts: -
Drop Location:-

Honorable Mentions

Quasar

An iconic grenade returning from BL2, the Quasar combines the characteristics of a Tesla and a singularity grenade. Always coming in shock, the Quasar is an efficient tool for stripping shields. Te singularity is useful to relief heavy enemy fire or stun pesky NOGs/militants. That said, the singularity can often be a little too strong and unpredictable, slowing down your gameplay instead.

Elements: :zap:
Best Parts: -
Drop Location:-


Shields


Fl4k has innately lower survivability compared to to the other classes, thus under most circumstances, a shield’s primary purpose is to serve to increase Fl4k’s tankiness. While the likes of the Nova shields, Band of Sitorak or Rough Rider can confer unique advantages, you are almost always better off using a good tanky shield. Partswise, bullet absorb or shield boosters tend to compensate best for Fl4k’s weaknesses.

Recharger/Recharge Berner

As its name would suggest, the Recharger instantly refills when your shield breaks, effectively allowing one to basically double their effective shield capacity. While this ability does have a noticeable cooldown of 20s, it is a sizeable survivability boost. The Recharger is probably Fl4k’s best all-purpose shield, and would serve you well no matter what build you use, functioning admirably even without the Shield-Recharge GR perk.

Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Urist McEnforcer

Stop-Gap

The Stop-gap performs similarly to the Re-Charger, but instead of refilling your shield on depletion, grants 5 seconds of invincibility. Your shield has to fully recharge before this effect can re-proc - and given its low recharge rate and sizeable delay, means it generally doesn’t perform as well as the Re-Charger for Rakk Attack and Gamma Burst builds. However, this shield is excellent for F4de Away builds, as Fl4k can weave in and out of combat, taking advantage of the invisibility to allow the shield to recharge. The Shield Recharge perk helps significantly in making this shield M4 viable.

Best Parts: -
Drop Location: The Unstoppable

Transformer

The Transformer has 2 special effects - firstly, it has an increased chance to absorb bullets. Secondly, it converts any shock damage taken to shield. The former effect provides a decent survivability boost, but the Transformer’s main strength comes from its shock absorption. Shock immunity means your shield now only takes increased damage from radiation. Furthermore, the ability can be exploited with shock splash weapons or grenades to manually recharge your shield. Given Fl4k’s lack of shield related skills, if you are willing to build around it, this is Fl4k’s best survivability option.

Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Killavolt

Honorable Mentions

One-Shotter Shield/Re-router

Extremely powerful amp shields that are ideal for bossing builds and 3-shot F4de Away builds seeking to maximize their DPS. The Re-router has a +120% weapon damage boost and heals for a portion of damage done. However, it only benefits single pellet weaponry, and the additional pellet from Two Fang does not receive the bonus. The One-Shotter shield is hence generally the best option since the Amp bonus benefits Two Fang and multi-pellet weapons. That said, getting one is akin to striking a lottery. F4de Away builds work extremely well with these shields because the invisibility allows the shield to recharge consistently.

Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Wotan the Invincible, Valkyrie Squad

Red Suit

The evil twin of the Transformer, the Red Suit provides immunity to radiation damage. While not a very tanky shield, it has great synergy with radiation splash weapons, allowing Fl4k to circumvent their self-damage, and instead turn it into a means to increase their damage via Elemental Projector artifacts. In addition the radiation particles emitted by the Red Suit can stack Furious Attack and proc Hunter Skills with a Bounty Hunter class mod.

Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Mission Reward for ‘All Bets Off’ story mission


Artifacts

The prefix in non-unique artifacts generally reflects the line bonuses (like mag size, or health regen) which the artifact has. For legendary artifacts, the line bonuses have no bearing on the prefix - instead the prefix of legendary artifacts are always the suffix of a non-unique artifacts. Thus a legendary artifact will possess both its own special effect, but also that of the non-unique artifact. Thus for an optimized set-up, a legendary artifact will always outperform a non-unique one.

Does this mean a legendary artifact is always better? Not necessarily. Most legendary artifact effects don’t greatly affect Fl4k’s gameplay (outside of niche builds) - the non-unique artifacts (or legendary prefixes) tend to possess more impactful effects and should be prioritized. The exception to this is the Otto Idol.

Prefixes

Last Stand

The Last Stand gives 5s of invulnerability when the player is below 50% health, with a 40s cooldown. While the cooldown may seem hefty, this artifact rises to the occasion when it is most needed. While Fl4k generally lacks survivability, this artifact can be used in conjuct with a Recharger or Stopgap to go a long way in keeping Fl4k up in tight situations

Ice-Breaker

The Ice-breaker increases cryo efficiency and damage to frozen targets. Given frozen enemies are essentially harmless, the Ice-breaker boosts both Fl4k’s DPS and survivability. That said, while the increased freeze chance is substantially, generally only items with inherently high freeze chance (like a Cryo Hex) or procs per second (like a Brainstormer) benefit noticeably from it.

Elemental Projector

The Elemental Projector is a favorite for increasing one’s DPS for boss speedkills, providing a hefty boost to elemental damage. That said, because Fl4k lacks any means to increase DoT duration and lacks swap speed, one may find this mechanism unwieldy, especially since Fl4k generally has enough DPS to melt most bosses. The Elemental projector finds its main strength in Gamma builds exploiting the Red Suit.

Flesh Melter

Provided you kill fast enough, the Flesh Melter can provide a huge increase increase to corrosive damage. This is especially useful in Loader Maps, where corrosive damage is optimal. While it may seem hampered in flesh maps, the presence of armored badasses means a boost to corrosive damage is helpful. The Flesh Melter’s limitation is its performance is inversely proportional to the difficulty of an area - and its utility diminishes when its truly needed.

Suffixes

Otto Idol

Unlike the much reviled relic in BL2, the Otto Idol is a powerful artifact which restores health on kill. The regeneration is much more powerful than any Fl4k generally has and is a huge boost to survivability. The Otto Idol is generally Fl4k’s best artifact, and optimal for most Fl4k mobbing set-ups outside of certain niche builds. Don’t leave the house without it.

Victory Rush

For more skilled players or high survivability builds, the Otto Idol may prove overkill at times. The Victory Rush is a decent alternative, which provides increased movement speed and damage on kill. The damage boost is sizeable, but additive to many of Fl4k’s boost (Interplanetary Stalker, The Power Within). The movement speed is noticeable though, and can be very helpful for Hunter-Master GB builds.


Class Mods


Bounty Hunter

Skills: Frenzy - Hunter’s Eye - The Most Dangerous Game
The Bounty Hunter is Fl4k’s all-purpose COM. The Most Dangerous Game and Frenzy are some of Fl4k’s most powerful DPS skills - thus by skill boosts alone, the Bounty Hunter is already an amazing COM. However, what pushes it over the top is its red text effect, which allows Fl4k to have a 3% chance to activate his Hunter Kill Skills when dealing gun damage. Hence, this allows Fl4k to maintain is optimum DPS in complicated mobbing situations where it may be difficult to upkeep Interplanetary Stalker and Second Intention. But where the Bounty Hunter truly shines is in bossing situations, where with other COMS it may be difficult to proc Interplanetary Stalker and The Most Dangerous Game. With high FR or high pellet count weaponry, the Bounty Hunter allows Fl4k to utilize these generally inaccessible skills. Furthermore, the Bounty Hunter allows for bosses to be treated as beasts, robots and humans. Against humans or Vault Monsters, this effect is actually more underwhelming than it sounds. But against robot bosses like Katagawa Ball or GENIVIV, the buff to Armor Damage by Hunter’s Eye and the corrosive damage from Interplanetary Stalker are huge multiplicative bonuses.

Optimal Skill Allocation
+3 The Most Dangerous Game, +2 Frenzy | Human and Beast bosses, General mobbing
+3 The Most Dangerous Game, +2 Hunter’s Eye | Robot Bosses.

Stalker

Skills: Interplanetary Stalker - Hunter’s Eye - Big Game
The Stalker focuses on increasing the power of Fl4k’s Hunter Skills, many of which, like Interplanetary Stalker, The Most Dangerous Game and Frenzy, are some of Fl4k’s most powerful DPS skills. With 6/3 Big Game, Fl4k can increase the strength of these skills by +85% - this COM allows Fl4k to achieve his highest possible potential DPS. Furthermore, with 6/3 Big Game, Fl4k can increase his Hunter Skill duration by +200%, which allows upkeep of Interplanetary Stalker, Frenzy, Second Intention and Furious Attack to be far more consistent. For Rakk enthusiasts, the boost to Interplanetary Stalker allows one to maximize one’s damage per Rakk. The Stalker is Fl4k’s all round best mobbing COM. While levelling, a Thrillbot buffing Big Game and The Most Dangerous Game is an excellent alternative.

Optimal Skill Allocation
+3 Big Game, +2 Interplanetary Stalker | General Mobbing
+5 Interplanetary Stalker | Rakk DPS focused builds

Red Fang

Skills: Ferocity - He Bites! - Eager to Impress
Fl4k is generally quite a glass cannon - his DPS output his tremendous, but his limited health regeneration cannot quite keep up with the damage taken at higher difficulties. This weakness applies to his pet too, which tend to have poor survivability in COV maps. However, the Red Fang covers most of these weaknesses for a Gamma Burst build. It’s red text effect causes Fl4k’s pets to taunt enemies while Gamma Burst is active, giving them a hefty +80% Damage Reduction - or effectively 5x more health. Furthermore, the buff to He Bites! further reduces damage multiplicatively by up to 30%. This makes your pet incredibly difficult to kill, even when facing COV Badasses. The taunt also draws enemy aggro very effectively, giving Fl4k a huge survivabilty boost. While levelling, the T4mer and D.A.R.P.A.W. COMs are decent alternative for pet builds, but ultimately are significantly inferior without the Red Fang’s special effect.

Optimal Skill Allocation
+3 He Bites!, +2 Ferocity | Pet DPS builds
+3 He Bites!, +2 Eager to Impress | Gun builds utilizing Pets as support

Honorable Mentions

DE4DEYE

Skills: Go For the Eyes! - The F4st and Furryous - Two Fang
This is your sniping COM. Two Fang provides a huge multiplicative bonus for most snipers and the DE4DEYE makes this a relatively consistent bonus. Furthermore, the red text effect of the DE4DEYE shines most on high damage per shot single pellet weaponry - such as snipers. The boost to The F4st and the Furryous, one of Fl4k’s most reliable damage skills is nice, though one would generally prefer a COM with a greater boost to Two Fang. That said, while the DE4DEYE will marginally surpass the Stalker in mobbing and Bounty Hunter for bossing if using snipers, it is generally inferior in all other applications. Thus it is a powerful, if niche COM.

Optimal Skill Allocation
+5 Two Fang

Bushmaster

Skills: Turn Tail and Run - Leave no Trace - Ambush Predator
Another incredibly power but niche class mod, the Bushmaster and Headcase COMs buff one of Fl4k’s most defining skills: Leave no Trace. With 6/3 Leave no Trace, Fl4k can gain a +72% chance to add ammo back to his magazine (per critical hit scored) - which can be very powerful with weapons with a low pellet count. However, this COM is niche because adding further points to Leave no Trace has diminishing returns for high pellet count weapons, and little added value for weapons with high fire rate. However, with Snipers, slug Shotguns and Heavy weaponry, the additional points in Leave no Trace can significantly extend your magazine, increasing sustained DPS and allowing for certain anointed bonuses to be kept up. The buff to Turn Tail and Run is highly desirable, giving a hefty amount of gun damage and fire rate (a multiplier Fl4k has in low commodity). For mobbing situations, the Headcase, with its buff to The F4st and Furryous, may be more practical.

Optimal Skill Allocation
+3/2 Leave no Trace, +2/3 Turn Tail and Run

CREDITS

Thanks to @boombumr and @jafortune for their expertise and advise on pet builds, and @tysonyar for his recommendations and detailed discussions.

23 Likes

One that may be an honorable mention is the warlord. I believe it comes in all elements and kinetic has a 30% chance to not consume ammo and it synergizes with LnT and gitm. Has good damage and fire rate and one of the most accurate ARs with continuous fire. Red fang mod seems to be most popular with stalker master builds for pets. The bounty hunter is good for master hunter pet builds.

This is the best guide I have seen. Well done. This is a valuable piece of content for the community.

3 Likes

For grenades, I love cryo and rad hex for crowd control. Trans Fusion for extra healing. Its Piss for extra damage on demand.

Artifacts really only for secondary stats that fit the build. Specific legendary ones didn’t seem to make much of a difference to me.

For coms, I would add the supercharger. Its great for leveling, and can make you quite tanky in end game

For shields, there is a lot of flexibility since the Fl4k doesn’t really have any shield centric skills. I love a ■■■■■■ brawler ward (minimal melee for better stats) for constant regen and double when broken. The gun damage is just icing.
Recharger is good for tankiness. Back Ham for the same. Transformer is good as well

For shields, may I suggest the Impaler and Red Suit for consideration? They recharge fast and proc Topped Off often which is great for spamming Fade Away. They have low capacity tho which makes them more for sniping/hit-and-run then tanking. I found this combo last night and have been going nuts about it ever since (maybe Band of Sitorak too although its capacity might be too low for me)

Also the Hive has a lot of synergy with Megavore/LnT/Head Count and you can mitigate its ammo consumption with LnT/Transformer/Big Boom Blaster (plus its fire rate is slow enough that you don’t need to equip Guerrillas)

Finally the Hornet- it may only come in corrosive but it still ■■■■■■■ wrecks, it has an insane fire rate and also Flesh Melter artifacts exist

My favorite shotgun is my Undermining Butcher,radiation.

Red Fang is pretty essential for Pet-Tank builds, and I’d probably also include 1 honorable mention for a purple pet focused com since there’s 4-5 of them and defining which one is the best would be prudent information for leveling/legendary alternative.

1 Like

I’ve been using the legendary “boost what you’re getting burned by” artifact (Elemental Projector) with great success lately. The synergy between the Pestilence (COV) pistol, Red Suit Shield (total protection from radiation) and artifact is amazing. I’ve branched our into using a nuclear Faisar and Westergun with it and I’m still knocking down mayhem 3.

I use the beastmaster mod that gives the pet a taunt after Gamma Burst and run into the radiation explosion. It applies that dot to me, but the red suit keeps it from doing dmg. So I get the artifact boost, without the dot.

Then I lay waste (pun intended) with radiation weapons.

The pestilence will apply the dot as well when it overheats, 50% of the time. So it isn’t necessary to have the pet out or alive to get the bonus dmg.

I’d love to test this synergy with a radiation cutsman, Lump, Bangstick, Projectile Recursion or Trevonator, but I don’t own any of those.

I got through Cistern of Slaughter with these weapons on Friday and I don’t consider myself especially good due to carpal tunnel. So I think that synergy is worth a mention.

2 Likes

Lucian’s and Rowan’s Call should be separated to better explain the differences in min-maxing for each one. Lucian’s has lower damage per hit, higher fire rate, but lower overall DPS. Rowan’s has higher damage per hit, lower fire rate, and higher DPS.

Lucian’s comes in Cryo and is thus BIS for an Ice Breaker setup.
COM Rolls: Weapon Crit, Assault Rifle Damage, Vladof Accuracy (needed after nerf)
Artifact Rolls: Cryo Damage, Cryo Efficiency, Magazine Size (preferential)

Rowan’s Call is better used for a few things. It is Jakobs, which is the only manufacturer with an additional 1.1x critical hit multiplier in the damage calculation. Best used when you have a COM with a Jakob’s crit and weapon crit rolls. This is a much higher DPS setup, but you lose out on the utility of Cryo. It also comes in Radiation which makes it BIS for an Atom Balm setup.
COM rolls: Jakob’s Crit, Weapon Crit, Assault Rifle Damage
Artifact Roll: Assault Rifle Damage, Element Damage, Magazine Size (more valuable on Rowan’s)

4 Likes

great guide. thanks for starting this out.

IMO Hex is still BIS grenade. It gets crits in Fade Away, and can proc Megavore in addition to normal crits. Cryo is still very good for applying to groups and single target. Not sure about other Elements.

I’ve used Bounty Hunter almost exclusively while playing Fl4k (~90 hours). It is extremely consistent in applying its buffs, ie. that you do not need ramp up by killing weaker enemies to take on the tougher ones. It can give +3 to The Most Dangerous Game which gives a lot of stats, as well as +2 to Hunter’s Eye which is more crit.

Thanks. I’m definitely no maestro in pet builds so I will include it (replacing the Friendbot) if it is the widely accepted meta for pet builds.

Which of the purple coms do you think is best? I can include it as a mention under the Red Fang.

Defo bounty hunter and Red fang. Friendbot has good utility with the revive, but to be entirely honest, at least for me, the only time my pet gets downed is when we’re both being pelted by rocket launcher spam, in which case I won’t be able to get a kill anyway since I can’t see.

Bounty Hunter with an equivalent skill boost (+3 to +3) will boost pet damage more than friendbot, although I’ve heard the 20% buff on Friendbot is bugged and doesn’t work.

Also, Cosmic Stalker for Rakk builds, and general mobbing. Bounty Hunter may not require you to get kills to activate it, but in mobbing situations that isn’t necessary. Having a longer duration and better effectiveness of Hunter skills is more valuable imo.

Cosmic Stalker is definitely the best class mod for mobbing (+3 BG, +2 IPS). The Bounty Hunter can surpass it for if you are caught in a complicated situation with several anointed, but 95% of the time, the Stalker not only possesses the best potential dps, but also the best upkeep of that dps and many QoL advantages (esp Second Intention). The Bounty Hunter shines more against bosses. The Deadeye is a great com too - though it is much more niche, and at its maximum potential only marginally surpasses the Stalker and Bounty Hunter in mobbing/bossing - so I would put it under HM.

1 Like

For grenades, Hex, Hunter Seeker, and Transfusions (regular ones, moxxi, and chupas) would be a good starting points.

For Heavies, Ruby’s wrath, the hive, the Lump (alien barrel torgue) and whichever torgue increases damage by 75% per sticky.

SMGs, anything with splash is great for Who Rescued Who since there is a possibility of hitting multiple enemies. Westergun is pretty good from what I’ve seen and experienced so far. Maybe not top gear material, but I think an HM is a fine spot for it. Vibrapulse may also be worth a look.

1 Like

Might as well just name every gun in the game, except the storm. That gun sucks unless your fl4k.

Grenades is pretty standard for Fl4k with the Hex, Hunter Seeker and Storm Front. I am pretty interested in the Transfusions though - I didn’t have the best performance with them in my previous testings - but maybe the Chupas increased healing will be a gamechanger.

Heavies wise, the Quickie/Hedgehog, Scourge and Lump are obvious shoo ins. I need to give the Hive a test, sounds like it has potential. I am not very convinced on the Ruby’s Wrath.

Finally somebody is doing God’s work. I have something to actually farm for now :joy::ok_hand:

I think the BiS shield for Red Fang Gamma Burst build would be a Soothing Re-Charger (double Brimming) for the 10% health regen when at full shields, it gives great survivability and is especially amazing when paired with All My BFFs, on top of that if you pair it with something like a Last Stand relic, you’ll get invulnerability, and during that invulnerability your shield will regen instantly and you’ll rapidly regenerate health, it’s also great for glass cannon Red Fang setups with no health regen as this will keep you topped off during mobbing.

1 Like

Played around with the legendary Dahl pistols (sans Night Flyer because I admittedly haven’t gotten one yet) more and imo they’re worth HM at least; they’re not nearly as good as the Linoge for Head Count but they’re more accurate and less ammo hungry. I know I only said Hornet earlier but tbh you could probably get away with putting all of them under a single entry