What are the benefits to gun(and soon grenade) scaling?

This is a honest question. According to their dev update melee, action skills, ect will be scaling with Mayhem, so thats not really the same and therefore not included.

I have thoroughly examined the problems with gun scaling, and although enemy health bloat, non-guns not scaling(though no word on shields), and loot sources not scaling have been addressed, we still have(from my post about this):

  1. It creates a sense that the game expects you to get to M10. It may not for everyone, but I’ve seen a few complaints of this beyond my own experience where the person feels like the game is compelling them to play at M10 despite them not liking the difficulty. People in the community keep saying that M10 is an option, and you don’t have to play it if you don’t want to… but if thats the case why doesn’t it feel like an option? Mayhem 4 felt optional to me, so why doesn’t M10? The only thing that actually changed was enemies health multiplier and gun scaling, so I can only assume its the latter.

Ive actually figured out why it feels like the game expects me to get to M10, its because the guns scale by the same increments they would if Mayhem 1-10 were replaced with levels 58-67. And common advice for Borderlands is to wait till max level to farm.

  1. In tandem with the above point, the fact that guns scale means that while the game rewards you if you go higher than you were playing, it also means that the game punishes you if you ever go to a lower level for any reason. It doesn’t matter if you are testing out a different build, wanting to goof off and tear through enemies for the fun of it, wanting to play with friends who are not comfortable at the Mayhem mode you were playing at, ect, all guns, regardless of parts and annointment, will be worse. That means that now [with most gear scaling with Mayhem level] you can ignore all loot completely. Borderlands has always been a Co-op encoraging, loot focused game, so for it to punish you for playing with friends if they are not on the same level as you(or prefer playing in a way that is hardlocked in the lower Mayhem levels) by removing the potential for better loot is a horrible design. There is a reason that they introduced the cooperative loot setting that allows you to play with lower leveled players and still get good loot, so why did they introduce something that banishes the spirit of that change?
  1. It messes up cross character trading. It doesn’t matter if its between two of your own, or gifting to a friend, it warps the character its given to. As someone said below, if they were to give one of their mayhem weapons to their friend, that friend will not find a better weapon until they reach or exceed the mayhem it dropped on. Which, depending on their playstyle or dedication, could be anywhere from days to never. And for two characters of your own, if I have a weapon that drops for my M10 Fl4k that starts an idea for a build, and I give that weapon to my Moze who is at a lower Mayhem level, I can’t actually test how good the build itself is as the M10 weapon will skew the resulting DPS by up to +150%. So if you are a build theorizer like me, and want an accurate reading on how good a build is, the M10 weapons have to stay in M10 as otherwise a build that is only M4 viable might jump up to M5 or 6 just on the weapons additional power in comparison to the enemies health. And on top of this, it makes the bank even more messy as you are probably going to have weapons from all Mayhems mixing.

So those are the issues that will still exist after Gearbox implements all of the fixes they have outlined in their post. Also shield damage not scaling, but I hope tgats an oversight.

Has there actually been any positives to gun scaling with Mayhem level that Im too focused on the above negatives to notice? Because the only two benefits I can think of are:

Guns do more damage(but enemies health scales more to compensate)

Players have to farm more(this is only a plus to people who like the act of farming and the devs)

I know I’m being really negitive in this post, but I do honestly want to see the other side of the argument.


I think the point to it vary based on perspective.

From a GBX point it introduces a “soft” way of increases end game play time through farming the higher level loot.

From a player point it induces you to farm the more powerful weapons and gives you a fairly minor (although tangible) reward for that achievement.

Remember, the weapons only scaled by about +130%. You could get the same increase and much more with many of the new anoints or changing a grenade or shield modifier.

The massive increase in power comes from the anoints plus the gun damage. I can play any of my current M10 builds with a M1 weapon and just be a tad slower than with my M10. Give it a try, get a M6 kaoson and see if you can really tell much difference in play than with a M10 one. A lot of the power creep has been the combination of the new weapons plus the anoints plus the modifiers plus the new weapons themselves.

For min / maxers and number crunchers yes, it can make a significant difference but for the average joe, you kill it in 1 shot or you kill it in 2.3 shots.

At least it is no where near the scaling of the OP levels in BL2.

So, for me, it is not much of a difference in the scale but it IS a reward for putting up with some of the annoyance of M10 and modifiers and I feel it was worth it when I get that RNG that gives me another 10 percent DPS.

Agree with this post totally. There is no point in me playing at all on a lower mayhem level than what I usually play. The loot is completely useless to me. The weapons I’ve gathered on a higher mayhem level will be so overpowered on lower mayhem levels - it will ruin the game for the other players who are in the lobby. I liken this experience to when I’m playing on m10 and someone jumps in my game with modded weapons and starts one-shotting everything. Takes away the challenge and completely sucks the fun out of the game.

Maybe some character like Moze who have a skill tree based on Grenade could be useful again.
Cause right making that blue skill tree with Critical chance damage on grenade with Moze is useless

Yea well they tried to create a bit of a soft op level to make people farm for more powerful gear without increasing the level cap?
But I agree, its not necessary

I would rather have stronger enemies that I have to fight with the same guns so that I have go optimize my stats and build like we had it in mayhem 1.0

Eh, the minesweeper moze build or just generally using em for ammo regen are both valid reasons still.

Put a nice cryo hex or hunter seeker and you can get some OK crowd control regardless of the full damage as well.

So Im not really missing any positives about the system?

That sucks.

The main issue I have with rewarding players for going up Mayhem levels in a tangible way is that the reverse, going down levels, feels like a punishment because every drop is worse because of something you did.

Like, they introduced a system that allows you to play with other people regardless of the state of their game(character level, mayhem level, specific build, ect) and still have a chance at better loot, but then reversed that decision by making loot scale to Mayhem level.

If I am playing at M6, and I join someone who is lvl 46(I picked a random number), unless they are already playing at M6 as well I will only be getting lvl 57 loot at whichever Mayhem level they are on, which is a huge drop off in damage just because I dared to play with someone at a lower level than I farmed my guns at.

Hell, it doesn’t even need to be co-op(though the same thing will happen to anyone who plays with someone who isn’t at their Mayhem level):

Want to try out a new build, but it can’t take on your current Mayhem?


Want to have a more relaxing evening? I hope you are ok with having a 0% chance of getting any new guns(and soon classmods, grenades, and shields) worth checking out.

M1.0 didn’t have this, and I honestly don’t understand how no one thought that scaling loot might be in direct conflict with their vision of Mayhem.

While I agree that you will get, on average, less powerful weapons and such, the decrease, at present, for dropping 2 mayhem levels would be maybe 20% - 26% lower power. With the random rolls on weapons and such you might not notice that much of a difference. I dont really see the weapon as useless if you get the weapon you want with the anoint you want you will probably use it until you get a better version.

I mean, if you got a 18 pellet anarchy, you might use that for quite some time but eventually go back and farm looking for a 20 pellet. The difference wasn’t that great but it was the principal of trying to max out the weapons you like and are using.

I understand where you are coming from but I just, for now at least, don’t see that much of an increase just in the weapon itself. A M4 to an M6 is no where near the difference in power than the right anoint makes or the synergy with your build.

Like most people I jumped right into M10 with my M0 weapons and did some farming. The weapons were effective with a good build synergy. Now yes, getting the new gear made some drastic differences but no where NEAR the difference the anoints and the M6 weapons made to the build.

Also, now that they are lowering the difficulty (hps and shields and armor sponge) of the higher mayhems as well as lowering the weapons effect the scaling should be even smaller. Let’s just say instead of a 130% increase it will be a 80% increase. Just guessing numbers here.

The difference in scale is going to be very light from 1 level to the next. Just getting that number on the weapon that shows you got it on M10 for bragging rights and a fairly low increase in total damage.

Let’s face it, people were rolling over the old Mayhem system with their builds and such doing takedown in 5 minutes and such. Now they are doing close to the same with more fine tuned items.

I dunno, I find myself kind of defending the minimum increase and frankly I DO see your point. I suppose they wanted to find SOME kind of reward to give to people for facing the higher difficulty and the increase in drop chance apparently wasn’t deemed good enough so they tossed in some low grade scaling.

I can see where it might be a bit annoying but I dont think it would be game breaking, at least, not to the majority of players.

Sorry for the rambling reply post.

I think this is spot on, but I personally see it as a positive. It’s a little like getting to experience the fun of levelling up again, though without the need of an actual level cap. Though as you say, if you’re a player who doesn’t actually want to play at M10 then it’s probably a bit of a bitter pill to swallow.

Old mayhem didn’t feel entirely optional, as it contained a few extra items that were only available at that level. But at least everything else was uncapped. Whereas when you’re playing below M10, you play in the knowledge that almost every single weapon is a weaker version than you could have.

Still, it’s primarily a psychological phenomenon. If you’re adamant that you only want to play on M8, and you never stray further than M8, then really, what’s the difference? All the weapons you find will be absolutely uncapped and as good as they can be for M8. And (in theory), since you’re only playing M8 enemies, you won’t need weapons higher than M8.

If a part of you yearns for the more powerful guns that will drop at M10, that’s understandable, but it also suggests that a part of you isn’t really as content to stay at M8 as you might want to think.

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The problem is, I like creating and testing new builds.

Not every build is M10 viable, or even M6 viable, so that means I am switching Mayhem levels a lot(like they want players to be able to). In 1.0 this wasn’t an issue as the only difference was drop rates(sure there were M4 drops, but that only mattered if you were farming for those drops), but in M2.0 in order to get a accurate reading of a builds power I have to farm for every Mayhem level I test it at.

I barely could withstand farming for one set of perfect gear, now I have to do it 3-4+ times? Hell no, thats not fun for me. Gun scaling sucked the fun out of the part of the game I enjoyed.

Gun scaling creates a one way path for players, and while Mayhems withing only a few levels have a “minimal” decrease of 20%(people spend a lot of time min-maxing for 5% increases, who the hell would willingly take a 20+% decrease?), going from M10 to M3 is a 50% decrease in damage. A system that forces you to farm for higher level weapons to advance, and decreases the weapons damage if you go back, will not be anything but a one way system for the average player, which is not what they envisioned for Mayhem yet is what they are insisting on.


The problem is that I like making new builds, which requires me to bounce around Mayhem levels as not every build is M10 viable, let alone right out of the gate.

See my other reply for a longer explanation, its 90% the same things i was going to say here but there’s no reason to type it out twice

I fully understand what you are getting at. I suppose I am looking at it a tad differently.

Right now, world drops are, for the most part, useless. We all have had pretty much all the world drops we need. Legendaries are dropping like candy. I dont even bother to look at legendaries anymore unless I am specifically farming for something.

So, what is the reward for playing on the higher mayhem levels if there is no scaling?

Increased drop rate? Well, for dedicated that doesnt seem to be working and normal world drops are largely useless on M10.

Increased experience? Can max the characters level out on first playthrough without even touching side quests.

Increased eridium / cash? Nothing to spend it on at present.

If you take out gun scaling then that leaves what? Personal achievement? Sense of pride or self satisfaction? Bragging rights?

I understand people played M4 before the scaling issue. I only started BL3 upon steam release so I was still building out my characters and farming equipment / cash / eridium so not sure what the previous motivation was for amping it up. Perhaps you can enlighten me as to why play the higher levels, what was the reward?

Personally, I have kept a set of characters at M0. I will use those characters to run the new content first as I can still have fun with all my different action skills and builds.

I have one set of characters I keep at M6 just to test the new weapons and content there.

I also have a several builds for M10 with min / maxed equipment for when I want a challenge.

If they implement the Mayhem indicators on weapons and such I can more easily keep track of which weapons I can use on which build so I dont cross contaminate.

Yes, it is a pain. No, it is not a great system. I just find that, if I am going to have to play against enemies that can be 375 times as hard to kill AND have to put up with those annoying modifiers, I want SOME sort of reward out of it.