Want to play other characters, but not sure who/how

Like many of you I’m sure, the new DLC rekindled interest in BL2, and I’d like to play a bit more of it.

Most of my time so far has been with a Maya thought-lock build, and every time I try new characters, I feel somewhat disappointed. There’s so many variables however, and so much information about them, that I know there are suitable options that I’d enjoy, once I found them.

I tend to play a slow, cautious, and tactical game. It’s not really in my personally to get in their face, and I don’t have the skills to really be successful at it either. Maya’s action skill is exceptional for surviving a heated situation, as well as for planning interesting varieties by targeting the right character, at the right time.

Here’s a brief rundown of my experiences with others:
Zero - Bore is cool, as is OSOK and other skills that enhance sniping. Also really like Fast Hands. I didn’t spec into melee skills at all, not having much interest there. The main drawback I have with him is survival. When I get into trouble, I just can’t get out of it.

Gaige - assuming I can tolerate her shrieking, there’s some very interesting mechanics in her skill set. I don’t think I’d like playing with large amounts of anarchy, but smaller ranges are manageable, Discord is interesting, and the shock skills and IO are also cool. The problem I had here, is that it didn’t seem to scale well to higher levels, so I found myself under-powered. And longer-range tactics can be a bit annoying with Anarchy, when I can’t hit the crits.

Salvador - Despite having essentially everything in the “best gear” threads including the Grog Nozzle and legendary COMs, I die when playing him. A lot. While gunzerking. Remember the part about not having the skills for being up close and personal? There’s so much graphic fluff on the screen, I can’t see what I’m doing. I like abusing things like Money Shot and Overkill, but I’m not getting the most from the character when I can’t get the hang of his core mechanic.

Krieg - I specced most of Bloodlust, and there’s some cool stuff, especially Bloodsplosion. Not sure where to go at higher levels though, since Mania doesn’t feel like my style, and Hellborn likely leads to self-immolation.

Axton - Feels too ‘generic’ to me. I had a hard time finding anything special about him to get excited about.

So I hope the request isn’t too generally vague, but if someone could point me in the right direction[s] based on some of these comments, that would be super.


How far did you play any of the others? Did you at least finish normal to get to at least 1 capstone skill? Have to say from your criteria that Axton could be what you’re looking for as he supports a more tactical game play. Sure he has no really standout or game breaking skills but he’s more a generalist in that he can do everything well, even raid bosses- he just doesn’t do it in a spectacular manner like Krieg’s Bloodsplosion or Zero’s B0re kills. The others are viable but don’t really meet your desire for slow and cautious- unless you wear a Bee shield. Great damage boost but very fragile, it will force you to be more deliberate in your actions, which means it’s great for everyone except possibly Krieg.


I think all of the veterans here have their favourite characters, which they tend to use most of the time. But… I also think that all of them will use the other characters too from time to time, just to refresh their love for the game. I play Maya and Zero most of the time. I like to have some sort of control of what’s happening around me. But every now and then, I put on my sunday bestest, and go to town with Krieg. Preferably if I’ve had a bad day, and wanna release some pressure.

What I’m trying to say is that you don’t have to play all the characters, but you might find it to be a whole lot of fun to use one that’s not “right up your alley”, so to speak. You need to learn how to play them, ofc, but that goes without saying. Some of the characters need to reach certain levels before the game opens up for them, so be patient.


Sal, Krieg and Gaige too some extent playstyle is up close and personal.

Based on you’re playstyle, Zero fits the bill (some zero players can help you out on survivability).

Also you will be surprised on Axton (he might be generic but he does not suck at anything).

For Gaige there is a new build around, sniper Gaige with a Hot mama/Longbow (since both doesn’t lose the accuracy even when you have lots of stack).


Apologies for leaving out an important detail about how far I played the other characters. All are at least through 61, and everyone but Sal/Krieg are at 72. So this is really about who else I want to take to 80 and endgame.

Looking through the tree, I really wanted to try the most ‘unique’ of the bunch (within my play style), so I’m playing Gaige again, with just a bit of respec. A cross between Tesla Coil and Shocking Anarchist, I was literally stunned at the difference since the last time I played her. So much so, that I’m not really sure what I did wrong the first time.

Among the changes I know for sure:

  • Remapped the reload key to avoid the muscle-memory accidents
  • Tactical use of Discord for sniping opportunities, and to keep Anarchy <100
  • Picked up Blockade shield
  • Specced into SaA, which I had previously avoided so it didn’t trigger nearby barrels, etc. In combo with DoT focus, it’s really helping in those situations where I couldn’t avoid (or deliberately sought) close combat.

Interestingly, I had a play-through sitting at Wildlife Preserve, qnd this was probably the best I’ve ever fared against the Rabid Stalkers. And really, really quick against Slagged Bloodwing.

Looks like I’m going to like this one.


Try grenade Axton.

Also, about Gaige, you can try a SiC + MiS setup with little Anarchy. While DT wreck havock you can play in your own pace and take your time for killing with DoT and mid to long range guns. As said, the Longbow was always pretty accurate even with some Anarchy stacked, Pimpernel either.
There are also Dahl guns that can realiable burst-fire crit spots. Gwen’s Head, Emperor, Teapot/Hornet.

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Made it to level 80 with some mixed results. Still promising, but struggled in a few spots. Probably running into the scaling factors for DoT at high levels. May well be gear-addressable.

Ended up with this build:

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The build is solid, get a Catalyst COM, a good shock grenade and spray Slag!
Also, spec Robot Rampage. With MiS and a good Roid shield from SiC, the burst damage is nuts.
Maybe swap Shock Storm for So5G, as the explosion range doesnt really hit anything.

The strength of the OC tree is Anarchy- you can still spec Preshrunk Cyberpunk and still have relative accuracy up to 100 stacks- it will also give your Discord more to work with as well as providing additional damage…

I have a Legendary Catalyst, which is awesome. Also an Electric Chair, and Quasar.
I mainly use DT to draw aggro, so I’m not too worried about increasing his damage output. I did move a point to Explosive Clap however, after reading comments about how that can extract enemies out of cover.

As far as Anarchy, the base value already goes up to 150, so no need for Preshrunk Cyberpunk.
I’m sure there are special conditions like raid bosses where higher levels are required for success, as well as weapons that work better at the higher levels. Just starting to research that part. Grabbed a Pitchfork from a mule, and it’s great, albeit major ammo limitations.