Amara has a ton of interesting interactions and can make so many guns do some crazy stuff, along with boosting elemental damage to its full potential. Moze can bullet hose without ever reloading and one-tap enemies into explosions. FL4K (while also probably still needing a few tweaks) has insane crit synergies and could spec into his pet really putting some work into the fight alongside him. Zane just has a class mod and an action skill that plays the game.
I’ve been a Zane main since release. I have almost 27 days of playtime on my main Zane save. I’ve made many Zane builds since the start (some of you may remember my Jakob’s Zane back from M3) and love the character and what he can do. But recently I’ve started to get a little bored of how he plays and I think I’ve narrowed it down to him really not having a niche. He’s truly a jack of all trades master of none type of character.
Zane can keep up. He’s viable just as much as any other character. But he isn’t that much better off than release when he was seen as the weakest of the four in terms of build diversity. Really what’s changed is that he’s gotten a single incredibly powerful COM and his digiclone has been buffed to the point of actually being able to take out enemies (and bosses) on his own, which is a fantastic change, I’d like to point out.
But Zane himself still doesn’t do, well, anything. He can get a lot of gun damage. And that’s about it. I’m not too well-versed in FL4K, though have quite a bit of experience with Amara and Moze, two characters that could very easily take out Graveward, for example, in one or two shots while standing still. For Zane to keep up he needs to be sliding at the speed of light and dump the mag of a sandhawk into his target. Either that or sit still and watch the clone do it for him.
I think I went on a bit more of a tangent than I meant to here but this is my main point: Amara, Moze, and FL4K have identities that give them areas that they can really specify their builds into and interactions to base playstyles around. Zane has a god-tier class mod and the ability to make many builds work, but not to the same power level or fun factor as the characters that have specific expertise.
But I also recognize this as being what Zane is about. This is why he gets two action skills and why all his abilities are for general gun damage. He’s supposed to be a jack of all. But why can’t he master anything when specced into it? Why do none of his COMs seem to give him cool new abilities that allow him to create an actual playstyle for himself that feels good instead of just being plug and play with any half-decent weapon? Or hell, give him bonuses/interactions based on which two action skills he has working together.
I hope to one day see Zane get addressed a little more. Either in a rework to his base identity, or preferably, his COMs.
I’d also like to be clear that I don’t believe Zane has absolutely no way of keeping up with the others. He does, and he does it pretty easily. It’s just that in some areas he takes a bit more work to do so and that he honestly feels a little boring in his builds as compared to the other VHs since he really doesn’t do anything super spectacular. Thanks for listening to my TED talk.