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


Sickle

A shotgun masquerading as an assault rifle, the Sickle fires 10 pellets and has a reduced fire rate. The regular Sickle’s per pellet exceeds most other Vladof rifle, and coupled with its respectable fire rate, means it is a DPS machine, and synergizes well with Head Count. Aiming down sights tightens up its characteristic spread. That said, the Boom Sickle is a whole 'nother monster. While its fire rate is much lower than the normal variant, it more than compensates by having its per-pellet damage rival sniper rifles. Its insane damage per shot is superior to most heavy weapons - and it is far more ammo efficient - making it one of the best all round weapons for any situation in the game.

Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: Boom
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Warden, World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Fade Away, Leave no Trace
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 125% Badass, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

Clairvoyance

With card damage rivaling Sniper rifles, the Clairvoyance is already a top-tier AR by stats alone - but its true power lies in its special effect. Upon scoring a critical hit, the Clairvoyance does not immediately ricochet its projectiles. Rather, after a short delay from the initial critical, all accumulated projectiles will ricochet, doing damage to both the original target and surrounding enemies. This means the Clairvoyance DPS potential is twice as stated on the card. The Clairvoyance can come with a wide variety of parts - the single pellet variant has great synergy with Two Fang and Overkill, but the Masher works better with Head Count and Leave no Trace.

Elements: :snowflake:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Krichy (DLC2 only)
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang, Leave no Trace
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 125% Badass, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

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
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

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: :fire: corrosive :zap: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Red Rain, World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Guerillas in the Mist, Unblinking Eye, Two Fang
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, Elemental 2 Mags, Bonus Radiation during GB

Honorable Mentions

Soulrender

The Soulrender’s red-text effect gives it a 12.5% chance to fire skulls which home in towards nearby enemies and deal splash damage. While these skulls can be very damaging, the main power of the Soulrender lies in its excellent base stats as well as the good handling and reload speed characteristic of other Dahl ARs, making it an ideal choice if one just wants to put forth a storm of lead.

Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Xam and Tom (DLC2 required)
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 125% Badass, Bonus Radiation during GB, Consecutive Hits

Lead Sprinkler

The Lead Sprinkler is a Jakobs Assault Rifle which on impact spawns 3 splash projectiles which flower from the original impact. While rather underwhelming as a gun by itself, with certain gear synergies, the Lead Sprinkler can become among the strongest ARs. Bonus elements increase the number of projectiles spawned while COM boosts to splash radius allows for the flowered projectiles to contribute to single target damage. Megavore increases the DPS of the flowered projectiles and Rakk Attack allows for upkeep of ASE elements. In Fade Away, the damage of the bonus projectiles skyrockets.

Good Juju

The Good Juju is a Burst-fire only Dahl Assault Rifle with several special effects. On scoring a kill, itt refills its magazine.

Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Rampager (M4 required), Wotan and Valkyries
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 125% Badass, Bonus Radiation during GB, Consecutive Hits

Elements: :no_entry_sign:
Best Prefix: Gatlin’
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Jabbermogwai, Billy the Anointed
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang, Megavore
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 125% Badass, 100% Rakk Attack, Consecutive Hits, Bonus Radiation during GB

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 gives it excellent DPS potential. However, the horizontal spread means it is nigh impossible to land all the pellets on a target, let alone on crit. 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.

Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Agonizer 9000, World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Guerillas in the Mist, Unblinking Eye, Head Count
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 125% Badass, Bonus Radiation during GB, Consecutive Hits

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: -
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

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: Judge Hightower, World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 125% Badass, 100% Rakk Attack, Elemental 2 Mags, Bonus Radiation during GB


Pistols


Maggie

A returning Legendary from BL2, the Maggie is a legendary Jakob’s shotgun masquerading as a pistol. 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. 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.
Best Prefix: Dastardly
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Tremendous Rex, World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Leave no Trace, Second Intention, Head Count
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

Hellshock

A Legendary Maliwan pistol which only spawns in fire and shock. The Hellshock’s projectiles ricochet on contact with any surface and do the element of the alternative firing mode. While this gimmick is interesting and is circumstantially useful, the Hellshock’s true power lies in its remarkable base stats. With a base damage surpassing most snipers, a fire rate akin to an SMG, a deep magazine and ammo efficiency, the Hellshock is a top tier option for mobbing and bossing.

Elements: :fire: :zap:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Gigamind, World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: -
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

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
Recommended Anointments: 125% Splash Damage, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

King’s Call/Queen’s Call

The King is back. The King’s/Queen’s Call are alien barreled Jakob’s pistols which are always elemental, and on crit, return ammo and spawn 3 splash projectiles which home on the original target. While seemingly neutered by a hotfix early in the game’s life cycle, the introduction of elemental grenade and shield anoints multiplies the number of ricochet projectiles allowing for pretty insane damage per shot. With the Overkill GR perk, it can one shot even beefy badass and anointed enemies.

Elements: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Troy, Tyreen
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang, Megavore
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 125% Badass, 100% Rakk Attack, Elemental 2 Mags, Bonus Radiation during GB

Seventh Sense

Yet another Jakobs pistol, the Seventh Sense boasts exceptional base damage. Upon impact with an enemy, the Seventh Sense produces 2 ricochet splash projectiles, which instead of targeting nearby enemies, hover over the original target. Upon reload, these projectiles will relentlessly pursue the target and deal huge damage. Bonus elemental anointments will increase the number of projectiles spawned. A highly versatile weapon which shines against badass and boss type enemies.

Elements: :snowflake:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Reward from the Cold Case Quest line
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang, Megavore
Recommended Anointments: Does not come anointed

Honorable Mentions

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, MOARR
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Lavender Crawly, World Drop (Linoge), World Drop (Splainer, Holey Man)
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

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
Recommended Anointments: 125% Splash Damage, 100% Rakk Attack, Elemental 2 Mags, Bonus Radiation during GB

Love Drill

The Love Drill is a Jakobs pistol of many quirks. It comes with a massively enhanced crit damage multiplier (up to +324%) at the cost of base damage, critical hits return 2 ammo to your magazine, and it has a 20% chance to deal +100% shock damage on crit. The combination of these abilities makes the Love Drill very powerful so long you can consistently score critical hits (or Megavore helps you do so).
Elements: :no_entry_sign:
Best Prefix: Dastardly
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Eleanor and the Heart (DLC2 required)
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang, Megavore
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

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
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 100% Rakk Attack, Elemental 2 Mags, Bonus Radiation during GB, Terror Ammo Regen on Shield/Grenade


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
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

Redistributor

While the Redistributor is fairly mediocre stats wise, it shines against large groups of enemies. Every 7th shot is amped and chains to the nearest enemy. When paired with bonus elemental anointments, these chains do far more than the original bullet, making it very efficient for wiping out large mobs of enemies by focusing fire on the toughest one. In Fade Away, every single shot counts as an amped shot and will chain - making it one of the best weapons to use in a Guerillas in the Mist build.
Elements: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Wotan, Valkyries
Recommended Skill Synergies: Guerillas in the Mist, Two Fang, Megavore
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, Consecutive Hits, Elemental 2 Mags, Bonus Radiation during GB

Hyperfocus XZ-41

The Hyperfocus boasts increased damage compared to a purple Hyperion SMG. Similar to a Conference Call, the Hyperfocus spawns a pair of projectiles which travel laterally on impact. The number of projectiles spawned increases with bonus elemental anointments. For mobbing, It is a decent weapon against humanoid enemies, but shreds most Loaders and creatures. Its true power is revealed against bosses, where the bigger they are, the harder they fall.

Elements::no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: -
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang, Megavore
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 125% Badass, Consecutive Hits, Elemental 2 Mags, Bonus Radiation during GB

Honorable Mentions

Ion Laser

A Legendary Maliwan SMG - 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: Binary
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Evil Saint Lawrence, DLC1 World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Megavore
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 125% Splash Damage, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

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: Demoskaggon, World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: -
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

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: Wotan, Valkyries
Recommended Skill Synergies: Megavore
Recommended Anointments: 125% Splash Damage, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

EMP-5/Wolfhound

A very powerful class of SMGs manufactured by Dahl, the Wolfhound is not flashy but boasts all around exceptional stats (with the exception of magazine size).With a high fire rate, great accuracy and handling, thw Wolfhound allows for a steady stream of criticals provided you are a good shot. The EMP-5 is the legendary Wolfhound - while it cannot come elementally, it more than makes up by boosting Fl4k’s movement speed and the hefty bonus critical while airborne is circumstantially useful. In addition, given there is less parts variation, it is much easier to obtain a powerful EMP-5 compared to a Wolfhound.

Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive: (Wolfhound) :no_entry_sign: (EMP-5)
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop (Wolfhound), Agonizer, Wotan (EMP-5)
Recommended Skill Synergies: -
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB


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: Fade Away, Leave no Trace, Head Count
Recommended Anointments: 125% Splash Damage, 100% Rakk Attack, Consecutive Hits

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: Katagawa Ball, World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Leave no Trace, Head Count, Megavore
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, Xonsecutive Hits, Elemental 2 Mags, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

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: Fade Away, Leave no Trace, Head Count
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 125% Badass, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

The Lob

An exceptionally powerful Alien Barrel shotty, the Lob fires an orb which travel slowly and can penetrate enemies along its trajectory. The Lob has perhaps the highest base damage of a slug-type shotgun, and its special effect allows each orb to hit enemies several times, further ramping its damage. Given its ammo efficiency, the Lob is both a top-tier option for mobbing and bossing. Megavore allows for the orbs to score critical hits and opens synergies with many of Fl4k’s other skills.

Elements: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Graveward, World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Leave no Trace, Two Fang, Megavore
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 125% Badass, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

Anarchy

The Anarchy boasts excellent stats for a Tediore shotgun, equivalent to a Powerblast of similar parts. Its true power relies on its red-text effect, inspired by the abilities of the BL2 Vault Hunter Gaige. On an automatic reload or kill, the Anarchy gains +30% damage for up to 10 stacks - this boost is exponential - which means at 10 stacks the Anarchy gains almost 14x card damage. At max stacks, the Anarchy is one of, if not the most powerful weapon in the game. In addition it adopts Gaige’s Close Enough ability - shots richochet off the ground towards enemies. It is incredibly easy to gain stacks - but also to lose them (by entering FFYL or manual reloading). A tanky spec is recommended.

Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop (DLC2 only)
Recommended Skill Synergies: Leave no Trace, Megavore
Recommended Anointments: 125% Splash damage, 15% Lifesteal, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

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.
Elements: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: Abundant
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: General Traunt, World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Rakk Attack, Two Fang, Megavore
Recommended Anointments: 125% Splash Damage, Elemental 2 Mags, Bonus Radiation during GB

Garcia

The Bulldog is back… except it is manufactured by Jakobs. The Garcia is a Jakobs shotgun which boasts exceptional fire rate and a ridiculously deep magazine at the cost of damage per shot. It can send down a steady stream of bullets, synergizing well with Leave no Trace. While is loses to many Jakobs shotties in damage-per-shot, its high fire rate gives it much better potential DPS. The one drawback of the Garcia is its part dependence - the performance of a x8 or x12 version is significantly inferior to the x16 variant.
Elements: :no_entry_sign:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Chonk Stomp
Recommended Skill Synergies: Fade Away, Leave no Trace, Head Count
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, Consecutive Hits, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during Gamma Burst

Honorable Mentions

Conference Call

One of BL2s most iconic weapons, the Conference Call is a Hyperion Shotgun, which on impact, causes 2 projectiles to fire laterally from the original one, and further splits along its trajectory. While at base, the Conference Call isn’t a very powerful shotgun, bonus elemental anointments multiply the projectiles produced at impact, allowing for exceptional damage against large enemies like Tyreen, Graveward or Agonizer. The sheer number of projectiles produced also means it has great synergy with Headcount.

Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Judge Hightower, World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Leave no Trace, Head Count
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 125% Badass, Elemental 2 Mags, Consecutive Hits, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

Insider

The Insider is a Maliwan alien barreled Shotgun, but unlike the non-unique Interloper, it does not fire a single slug projectile, but 5-12 projectiles (depending on parts) of reduced damage. The Insider is an exceptional mobbing weapon - it possesses some of the highest damage per shot as far as straight-shooting shotguns go, and its projectiles penetrate enemies. If shot from an angle, the Insider can hit an enemy twice, once from the initial impact and secondly from the AOE when the pellets connect with the ground - effectively doubling its damage-per-shot. It also has a huge splash radius, allowing the player to carpet-bomb spawns of enemies.
Elements: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: Abundant
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop (DLC2 Required)
Recommended Skill Synergies: Leave no Trace, Megavore, Fade Away
Recommended Anointments: 125% Splash Damage, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

Nothingness

The Nothingness is a powerful Maliwan shotgun. Like the Shockwave, the Nothingness must be charged for each shot, which fires a single pellet, which after a fixed distance or on contact with an enemy, produces several tightly packed explosions, which increase depending on how long the weapon is charged. If used correctly, the Nothingness makes quick work of mobs and bosses alike. The gun does have a learning curve though - the best way to use it is at close (but not point-blank) range.

Elements: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Gmorck (DLC2 Required)
Recommended Skill Synergies: Leave no Trace, Two Fang, Megavore
Recommended Anointments: 125% Splash Damage, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

Protuberance/Shocker

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. 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. The Shocker is the legendary, shock-only variant of the Protuberance - instead of firing a projectile which flowers on impact, the Shocker fires a slow moving energy ball which splits to 3 at a fixed distance. Paired with its high base damage, the Shocker has incredible potential, if a little ungainly to use against mobile enemies.

Elements: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: World Drop (Protuberance)
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang, Megavore
Recommended Anointments: 125% Splash Damage, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB


Sniper Rifles


Unseen Threat

The Unseen Threat is an insanely powerful Jakobs Sniper. It has 50% more base damage to an equivalent Muckamuck, giving it far more single target damage. On critical hit, rather than ricochet a projectile like other Jakobs weaponry, the Unseen Threat spawns 3 rocket-like projectiles that home towards the nearest enemy - this can be the original target. This ability makes it one of Fl4k’s strongest bossing weapons. In mobbing, the rockets spawn rather inconsistently and the Unseen Threat powers through by its crazy base damage alone.

Elements: :no_entry_sign:
Best Prefix: Dastardly
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Ammoch (DLC2 Required)
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 125% Badass, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

Skullmasher

A returning Legendary from all of the previous installments, the Skullmasher is more powerful than ever. Firing 5 pellets of reduced damage, the Skullmasher does more than twice a Muckamuck per shot, and has 4 times the fire rate. Hence, while it does not benefit as much off Two Fang or Overkill and kicks like a horse, the Skullmasher powers through sheer DPS alone and is an excellent and flexible weapon for any situation. Fl4k possesses many Handling skills which can make its high recoil much more manageable.
Elements: :no_entry_sign:
Best Prefix: Iron-willed
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Grey and Portal Chests (DLC2 Required)
Recommended Skill Synergies: Leave no Trace, The Most Dangerous Game, Megavore
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 125% Badass, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

Krakatoa

The Krakatoa is the Legendary variant of the Multiplex, and only comes in Incendiary. On kill, the Krakatoa spawns a volcano which dues respectable damage to surrounding enemies. However, the main power of the Krakatoa lies in its ridiculous base damage, which is more than 3 times higher than an equivalent Multiplex. Coupled with its high Fire rate and deep magazine, it melts badasses and bosses alike. For mobbing, the charge time gimmick often results in missed shots and loss of Overkill, but its base damage allows for it to hold its own.

Elements: :fire:
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Rampager, World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 125% Badass, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

Headsplosion/Wedding Invitation

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 deal kinetic splash damage and can benefit from splash/AOE buffs. Within F4de Away, the Headsplosion is incredibly potent as the ricochet pellets score guaranteed pseudo crits - it is not uncommon to see 3 or even 4 enemies fall to a single shot. The Wedding Invitation is its massively souped-up cousin - always incendiary, deals bonus splash damage, and on crit, ricochets 2 cryo splash projectiles and restores ammo to the magazine. It is a complete monster of a sniper which shreds Anointed, armored enemies and bosses while being incredibly ammo efficient. Problem is it is a limited time item from the Broken Hearts event and is efficacy is expected to decrease with level cap increases and Mayhem 2.0.
Elements: :no_entry_sign: (Headsplosion) :fire: (Wedding Invitation)
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Manvark (Headsplosion), Reward for destroying 100 hearts in the Broken Hearts Event (Wedding Invitation)
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang, Fade Away
Recommended Anointments: 125% Splash Damage (Headsplosion), 100% Weapon Damage, 125% Badass, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

Honorable Mentions

Jakobs Snipers

True to their manufacturer creed, Jakobs manufactures some of the best Sniper rifles out there because of their high base damage and enhanced critical hit modifier. The strongest options have already been listed above, but even a well-parted Muckamuck can become a One-Shot machine with the Overkill Perk. The following are some noteworthy unique variants worth looking out for:

The Monocle has a ridiculous +250% critical hit modifier at cost of base damage. While at base it doesn’t far surpass the Muckamuck, it has greater synergy with the Overkill GR perk. It is inferior in Fade Away because its enhanced crit modifier has diminishing returns with the PostAdd bonus.

The Cocky Bastard has slightly reduced base damage but increased fire rate. On critical hit, it deals a hefty +150% shock damage, making it an ideal choice for heavily shielded mobs. The bonus shock damage is additive to bonus elemental anointments and can result in diminishing returns.

Elements: :no_entry_sign:
Best Prefix: Iron-willed
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Demo skaggon, World Drop (Monocle), Grey and Portal Chests (Cocky Bastard, DLC2 required)
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang, Turn Tail and Run
Recommended Anointments: 100% Weapon Damage, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB (Monocle/Muckamuck)

Fire Storm/Storm

The Storm and Fire Storm are a pair of very powerful Maliwan Snipers. Like a Proton Rifle, they fire a projectile of splash damage. The Fire Storm and Storm are much more powerful than their non-unique cousins because of their greatly increased base damage. The Fire Storm produces a hail of fireballs which descend a few seconds after the initial impact, these are very powerful and can wipe out spawns of enemies. The Storm’s special effect is less powerful, but has synergy with Leave no Trace and Head Count. The Fire Storm is capable of firing its whole magazine after the initial charge time, but the Storm must be charged for every shot.

Elements: :fire: (Fire Storm) :zap: (Storm)
Best Prefix: -
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Katagawa Jr, World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang, Leave no Trace, Megavore
Recommended Anointments: 100% Splash Damage, 125% Badass, 100% Rakk Attack, Bonus Radiation during GB

Lyuda

Much like its BL2 counterpart, the Lyuda’s projectile 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.
Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: Annexed, Vicious
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Tremendous Rex, Reward for completing all of Zer0’s bounties, World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Two Fang


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: Fade Away, Leave no Trace, Unblinking Eye, Two Fang
Recommended Anointments: 125% Splash Damage

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: Fade Away, Two Fang, Leave no Trace
Recommended Anointments: 125% Splash Damage, Bonus Radiation during GB

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
Recommended Anointments: 125% Splash Damage, Consecutive Hits, Bonus Radiation during GB

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, whereby its potency can even match a fully charged Ion Cannon if enough distance is given for the child rockets to spawn. 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 - a source of ammo regeneration (through the Big Boom Blaster or LnT abuse) is highly recommended.

Elements: :no_entry_sign: :fire: corrosive :zap: :snowflake: :radioactive:
Best Prefix: Shredded
Best Parts: -
Drop Location: Brood Mother, Alicritious Vanda, World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Fade Away, Two Fang, Megavore
Recommended Anointments: 125% Splash Damage, Bonus Radiation during GB

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: Loco Chantelle, DLC1 World Drop
Recommended Skill Synergies: Fade Away, Two Fang, Megavore, Leave no Trace
Recommended Anointments: 125% Splash Damage, Bonus Radiation during GB


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, the Consecutive Hits anointment and Pearl of Ineffable Knowledge. 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 Head Count. 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: Mitosis
Drop Location:-
Recommended Skill Synergies: Leave no Trace, Head Count, Megavore, Bounty Hunter

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 player to avoid damage.

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.

PASSIVE STAT BONUSES

For greater detail on passive bonuses of COMs and Artifacts, the [Guide] A Brief Guide on Passive Gear Bonuses is an excellent resource

  • Magazine Size bonuses on artifacts are much more generous than COMs - with a 50% boost at lvl 57. Fl4k lacks mag size and good reload speed bonuses, making this valuable.
  • Area of Effect Damage is optimal when using Splash weaponry - boosting not only splash damage but splash damage radius as well. Rakk Attack and the Attack Commands of Countess/Gunslinger will also receive a hefty boost from this.
  • Elemental Damage can be a hefty multiplicative bonus. Even if using non-elemental weaponry, the bonus elements from shield/grenade anointments will benefit. Gamma builds in particular would favor a buff to Radiation damage.
  • Weapon Type bonuses (ie. Pistol damage) is multiplicative to general gun damage boosts and is optimal for the min-maxer. The number of permutations required to optimize every class of weapon can be pretty insane though.

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.

Drop Location: Tyreen the Destroyer, World Drop

The Pearl of Ineffable Knowledge

The Pearl is powerful artifact given by Claptrap in DLC2. Working similarly to the consecutive hits anointment, the Pearl gives 1% increased damage for every continuous tick of damage dealt, stacking exponentially up to 15 times for a total of +16.1% damage is that is multiplicative to all other sources. At the 15th stack, it also gives an additional +90% additive weapon damage. The stacks are incredibly easy to build up and give a huge increase to DPS. While the Pearl cannot come with any prefixes or roll some of the more powerful passive stat bonuses, it generally provides the optimal DPS increase to most Fl4k set-ups outside of those using the St4ckbot class mod.

Drop Location: Given by Claptrap during ‘The Call of Gythian’ story mission (DLC2 required)

Honorable Mentions

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.

Drop Location: Sloth World Drop


Class Mods


PASSIVE STAT BONUSES

  • Weapon Type bonuses (ie. Pistol damage) is multiplicative to general gun damage boosts and will generally provide the greatest boost to DPS.
  • Manufacturer Critical Damage provides the most generous stat boost and can really ramp up the DPS of Rakk Attack/Gamma Burst Builds. Fade Away builds tend to benefit less due to the hefty PostAdd crit multiplier.
  • General Weapon Damage is additive to many of Fl4k skills, but provides a universal bonus to all guns.
  • Action Skill Cooldown boosts of COMs is more generous than on artifacts. Useful for Fade Away builds which don’t really need more damage.

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. 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. This allows Fl4k to maintain is optimum DPS in complicated mobbing situations where it may be difficult to upkeep Interplanetary Stalker. 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, which is significant for Hunters Eye. This bonus doesn’t work exactly as stated - and the bonus damage against armor actually applies to all health bars - which can give a hefty bonus of between +39-78% damage, depending on the point investment in Hunter’s Eye.

Optimal Skill Allocation
+3 The Most Dangerous Game, +2 Frenzy | General mobbing
+3 The Most Dangerous Game, +2 Hunter’s Eye or +5 Hunter’s Eye | Bossing

Stalker

Skills: Interplanetary Stalker - Hunter’s Eye - Big Game
The Stalker focuses on increasing the power of Fl4k’s Hunter Skills which 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. Currently, the COM is bugged and doesn’t give the appropriate buff to Interplanetary Stalker. 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.

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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.

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

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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.

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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.

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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)

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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