Zane (Operative) Sub Zero Build Guide Gear
Structure of This Guide
This Sub Zero build guide is split in 3 different pages. The other 2 pages are the build overview and the skills, which you can access by clicking the buttons below.
The build relies heavily on either cryo or precise weapons to work; without them, you will lack efficiency in how fast you can kill targets and maintain the snowball effect rolling.
Automatic and/or fast-firing/multiple-pellet weapons are the preferred choice for this build, as the more and faster you shoot bullets, the quicker you can freeze targets:
- DLC3 Light Show takes the spot as the most effective short range fast-firing weapon, sporting massive damage. Vanilla alternatives are Night Hawkin, cryo Kaos, better suited for longer range engagements.
- The Monarch in cryo variant is the default choice for deleting any sort of beefy target point blank, just be wary of the ammunition consumption and the fact your mobility is null when depoloying a bipod.
- Among Hyperion SMGs, DLC3 Proprietary License is an interesting choice, enabling moderate mobbing potential while also offering good single target damage
Trevonator in cryo variant is another very viable option: quick three-round burst and fast fire rate coupled with high cryo efficiency make the weapon surprisingly effective even at mid range at freezing targets in 1 volley.
While not having particular synergy with the build, despite the potential cryo roll, Backburner is a very powerful launcher that can be used to soften crowds of enemies or quickly get back up in FFYL.
Cutsman with Incendiary damage is our backup weapon to fight Anointed enemies and burst them down quickly. A Corrosive and a Shock variants should be kept as backup for Maliwan Takedown.
Grenades have a secondary role in this build, thus an utility-based mod that does no friendly fire is the preferred choice:
- It's Piss provides again another damage debuff on target.
- Hex, Hunter-Seeker, Tran-fusion in shock variant offer shield-stripping utility without the risk of accidental splash damage.
- Surge and Storm Front should be considered only when running The Transformer.
There are 2 Class mods worth aiming for in this build: the first increase your snowball potential, while the second makes snowballing easier.
- DLC1 Seein' Dead is by far Zane's best class mod all around, boasting both good traits and a fantastic passive.
- Executor has the best passive, which is further augmented by Death Follows Close, and offers random rolls around kill skill in the Hitman Tree.
When choosing the Artifact, the most important part is the random effect, while the legendary roll is of secondary importance. It is extremely important to find any Artifact with the Ice Breaker affix in order to increase cryo efficiency. Ideally an Ice Breaker Victory Rush is your best option, but that is very specific.
Several options are available when considering shields too:
- The Transformer, Stop-Gap, and Re-Charger are all excellent defensive choices.
- Frozen Heart and Nova Berner are more offensive oriented, especially for close range.
- DLC4's new entries, Faulty Star and Plus Ultra are both serviceable options.
Anointed rolls are special additional effects that can appear on weapons and shields at higher levels. The special effects relate to the use of action skills and provide powerful temporary buffs.
Due extremely high Action Skill uptime the clear winner is the generic:
- 'While an Action Skill is Active, Weapon Damage is increased by 200%'
Operator specific anoints effect have a strong synergy but they are undeniably less powerful:
- 'While Barrier is active, Status Effect Chance is increased by 50%' greatly boosts our chance to freeze targets.
- 'While SNTNL is active, Gain 100% of damage as bonus Cryo damage' similarly offers cryo damage to weapons that would otherwise not have it by default.
- 'While Barrier is active, Accuracy is increased by 60%, and Critical Hit damage is increased by 70%' makes it easier to land critical hits.
Considering how the build aims at resetting Action Skill duration, on Action Skill End anointments will have a relatively low uptime.
For Shields and Grenades, you want instead two of the following Anointments with different elements (two identical Anointments wont stack):
- 'On Action Skill End, gain 50% bonus Incendiary Damage with Weapons for 10 seconds.'
- 'On Action Skill End, gain 50% bonus Shock Damage with Weapons for 10 seconds.'
- 'On Action Skill End, gain 50% bonus Corrosive Damage with Weapons for 10 seconds.'
- 'On Action Skill End, gain 50% bonus Cryo Damage with Weapons for 10 seconds.'
- 'On Action Skill End, gain 50% bonus Radioactive Damage with Weapons for 10 seconds.'
It is extremely important to have as many elements as possible spread between your native weapon element, and anointment effects, as it will increase the versatility of your loadout without requiring multiple weapon swaps mid combat, and reduce the chances you are facing the type of enemies resistant to the weapon element you decided to stack.
Alternative Gear from Missions
This build utilises strong general weapons that can drop anywhere in the game. Therefore there are no specific mission drops to support this build.
Best-in-slot Gear and Stat Priority List
|Secondary Stat/Effect Priority
|Weapon 1 Alternative
|Fires multiple pellets with each shot.
|Weapon 3 Alternative
|On depletion damage immunity for 5 seconds.
|The Ice Breaker prefix
|Increased damage against frozen targets.
- 04 Oct. 2020: Updated for DLC4.
- 11 Dec. 2019: Guide updated for Mayhem 4 and Maliwan Takedown content.
- 27 Oct. 2019: Guide added.
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