Winter's Almighty Charged Nanites (or some... silliness) Zane

Here’s another build writeup from your’s truly. The name comes from the augments (two for SNTNL, two for the Barrier). Partially inspired by @Faux_Pirate’s “The Flash” build, pared down for lvl 50 and redistributed to get Calm, Cool, Collected.

Like “The Flash” (and @GatoDelFuego’s SuperSonic Sawed-Off Shotgunner build), most of Zane’s gun damage buffs are going to be implicit in Violent Momentum. While I would have liked to reach Hitman’s capstone, I couldn’t get it, CCC, and Nerves of Steel - so I compromised, and got Under Cover’s capstone instead. Anyway, into the build.

This is not how I would level Zane, it’s just a fun idea once he’s at level cap.

Under Cover
It’s going to be easier to list the skills I don’t take, and why, than to explain the skills I did take… so I’ll take a shot at that, instead.

  • Adrenaline: We don’t need any action skill cooldown rate, because we’re sporting CCC. Hopefully between Nanites, Ready for Action, the Barrier, and Refreshment my shield and health stay topped up, so cooldown never comes into play during combat.
  • Rise to the Occasion: Why bother, when Nanites does it better?!
  • Best Served Cold (1/5): I’m not putting 4 points here because, ironically, I don’t want my cryo novas to kill anything. I want stuff to freeze, absolutely, but to proc Refreshment I want them to soak as much damage after being frozen as possible.

The main interactions out of this skill tree are Best Served Cold proccing CCC and Refreshment, while keeping free movement speed from Charged Relay, shields topped up with Nanites & Ready for Action, and Nerves of Steel turning every weapon into a Hyperion. Needless to say, I’ll be keeping that barrier in carry mode for full mobility.

Where I want CCC to keep the barrier always up, I want the drone to die right after tossing me a grenade & launching Almighty Ordinance. That way, I can serve it up again and proc all those sweet kill skills (including Futility Belt for survival) with Seein’ Red. Zane’s comin’ in hot!

  • Violent Momentum: This is going to net Zane some absolutely crazy damage if it upscales as his default movement speed increases.
  • Violent Speed: Speaking of movement speed increases, this will keep Zane blitzing across the map. Hopefully the percent adds with Charged Relay.
  • Cold Bore: Free Cryo?! Sweet Sno-Cones! Unfortunately, I usually struggle with taking full advantage of these kinds of swap-then-kill skills until I’m in Fight For Your Life with nothing reloaded… Maybe I’ll move these skill points into Violent Violence or Playing Dirty.
  • Cool Hand: Reload speed = DPS. Need I say more?
  • Drone Delivery: If Duct tape mod was a tier 1 skill, I’d take it instead. Unfortunately, I’m probably going to be stuck never using my grenades… what do y’all think I should use with the Sentry?
  • Seein’ Red: If the fight won’t come to me, I’ll go to the fight! This should also be an immense help with bosses. Especially if those bosses can kill the drone.

Combat Loop

  1. Barrier. Procs kill skills, gives movement speed… Pick 'er up & run with it!
  2. Get to the fight. Launch SNTNL right in the middle of the mob/in front of the boss, paint a baddie for Almighty Ordinance, and retreat. Hip-fire all the way!
  3. SNTNL dies, Calm Cool Collected continues to proc, so it gets thrown right back out. Hopefully CCC can keep the barrier fresh. Repeat until everything’s dead.
  4. Have a footrace with your rocket launcher to blammo a badass’s face!

Zane is going to be fast & furious & tanky. I really can’t think of much more I’d want! My only real concern is that Stiff Upper Lip only resists elemental damage types - therefore not stacking with Futility Belt. Although, if splash damage can still apply DOTs even though it’s treated as non-elemental, perhaps it will still be useful.

Comments, reworks, off-topic shenanigans… all welcome. Also equipment speculation!

EDIT: Doofus forgot to put in a skill tree link. Pic for redemption!

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Your point about Best Served Cold is interesting and I thought about that while making my build also but I’m kind of waiting until we see more about how Cryo damage will work in this game compared to TPS.

This is important to think about as well. How we level can sometimes be vastly different than end-game builds, especially if those builds revolve around certain legendary weapons. A certain playstyl can look amazing, (like The Flash), but since I won’t be able to get Supersonic Man until close to the level cap I won’t be quite as fast as I would like to be during most of my playthrough.

I would totally love to theorycraft a levelling guide, but… I don’t think it’ll matter too much. I’ll probably spec a bunch of cooldown buffs because Calm, Cool, Collected is so far down, then go for Seein’ Red – but even without action skills I expect most of a normal playthrough to be doable.

As far as cryo damage goes… I hope that Best Served Cold and Cold Bore have each a fixed chance to freeze. If it scales with damage, we’ll have to consider that with Calm, Cool, Collected builds. Personally, I would like to see something like “cryo is effective against flesh & armor but ineffective against frozen & shielded” to encourage switching away from it, and not leading with it like we had to with slag in BL2.

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You can add one more point to the build. has the starting point wrong as indicated by live streams from guardiancon. In BL3 you start getting points at level 3; however, the calculator has level 4 as the starting off point.

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Sweet! Thanks for letting me know. Ooooh… the possibilities!