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Guide Writer's Thoughts: What the Hotfix Tuning Numbers Mean

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Yesterday's hotfixes introduced some big changes to the existing builds, with some favorite and very powerful items getting nerfed, so we though we'd talk to one of our guide writers, Motoko, to hear what's actually happened, as he tests the changes for upcoming guide updates.

We'll just go through all the hotfixes and hear what all those numbers actually mean. Obviously as the hotfix is still fresh, there's a lot of testing yet to be done, so these are just first impressions, but considering Motoko has a lot of experience and play time, they're definitely worth a read.



  • Westergun damage increased by 25%
  • ASMD damage increased by 28%
    The Westergun and ASMD buffs are nice on paper, but both weapons are mostly unused.
  • Cutsman damage reduced by 25%
    The Cutsman nerf brings it in line with most SMGs so it wont be an auto-pick on anything but Phaselock Amara anymore.


  • Ten Gallon damage increased by 8%
    Another buff to a mostly unused weapon, its main issue is you can only have 1 drone active at any time and reloading the weapon just adds more bullets to the active drone.


  • Sickle reload speed increased by 25%
    Address some of the downtime the weapon suffers from, due to being relatively ammo inefficient. It now becomes a strong option, but I would only use it on builds that retain some sort of ammo regeneration.
  • Faisor damage increased by 15%
    After the buff it becomes a very competitive Assault Rifle.
  • Infiniti damage increased by 40%
  • Magnificent damage increased by 25%
    Infinity and Magnificent are mostly niche guns used in some builds, the damage buff doesnt necessarily increase their appeal, as you pick those for their special effect already.
  • Jericho damage increased by 40%
    The buff wasnt really needed, as it was already one of the top 2 launchers in the game, albeit with the potential to kill your team with friendly fire.
  • Lucian’s Call accuracy and handling reduced
    The Lucian's Call nerf helps differentiate the weapon from its counterpart Rowan's Call: the former gives you a bigger magazine and faster fire rate which makes it better suited if your target tracking is not on point, while the latter gives you more dps as long as you keep hitting critical points.
  • Lyuda Critical Damage Bonus decreased by 30% and made a modification to address a reported bug that an extra bullet was spawned in the center
    This nerf brings it more in line compared to any other sniper rifle, despite still being much more usable, especially when paired with Anointed effects that makes you consume no ammo for X seconds.


  • Try-Bolt damage increased by 25%
  • Devil's Foursum damage increased by 13%
    Despite the buffs both Try-Bolt and Devil's Foursum lack usability in practice: one is a worse burst-fire Ogre and the other requires you to be at a specific distance from your target for all the projectiles to connect.
  • Alchemist damage increased by 25%
    The buff makes it an interesting option, especially if you run with TheTransformer shield, making the gun provide you shield sustain instead.
  • Flakker now consumes the full magazine when fired and damage is reduced by 33%
    The Flakker nerf is quite brutal for any character that isnt Moze with some ammo regen traits, as it dramatically reduces the DPS the gun can provide if you are forced to reload after just 1 shot. Moze can bypass that problem with traits like MeansOfDestruction, Redistribution and Forge.


  • Maggie damage increased by 35%
    The buff makes it a pocket Jackobs shotgun, provided you aim down the sight, altho it's hard to make good use of the Jakobs weapons trait.
  • Hellwalker damage reduced by 8%
    This nerf doesn't change the weapon functionality in a meaningful way: you still one shot anything short of a badass until you hit Mayhem 3, then it becomes useless.


  • Conference Call damage increased by 15%
    The buff should make the weapon appealing for mobbing, unless you fight in a very open space. It will probably still be worse than Brainstormer unless you can find an Incendiary or Radioactive version.
  • Crossroad accuracy reduced and it now fires 3 projectiles instead of 4
    This nerf is quite big: on top of losing additional pellets, the drop in accuracy makes the weapon basically worthless past 10 meters.
  • Butcher accuracy reduced and damage reduced by 25%
    The nerf brings it in line with other top shotguns, it will still obliterate 1 target at a time faster than any other weapons in the category, but it wont translate in superior mobbing potential at the same time.


  • Vanquisher damage increased by 20%
    This one makes the weapon more relevant if you either absolutely wanna go fast or play the Zane running build. Best paired with the cryo artifact that increases your slide speed.

Children of the Vault

  • Skeksis damage increased by 15%
  • Linoge damage increased by 20%
    COV pistols are mostly for close quarter combat, due their rate of fire and lack of accuracy. The buff to Skeksis and Linoge makes them just a bit worse than the better Torgue and Jakobs solutions.
  • Pain is Power damage increased by 25%
    The buff is not really gamechanging: it does increase the damage of a relatively bad weapon, but at the same time it also increases the damage you suffer from its unique effect, and the only reason to take that weapon was to proc Elemental Projector.


  • Ruby’s Wrath damage increased by 10%
    The second buff in 2 patches for this launcher makes it somewhat competitive with TheScourge for a no-reload moze build.




  • Hunter-Seeker damage increased by 25%
    This buff, coupled with the Hex and Firestorm nerfs makes this gimmicky mod a potential choice for long range engagements, but who uses grenades for long range?
  • Hex grenade damage reduced by 70% and duration reduced to 3 seconds
    The Hex change kill its damage output, making the grenade mod a niche choice for Zane Cryo build or Moze. A recurring Cryo Hex is still a very viable option in those 2 builds for the crowd control provided, and in the case of Moze as resource engine. Any other variant is largely outclassed by other mods. For a general purpose mobbing grenade StormFront or Quasar are your best bet.
  • Firestorm damage reduced by 70%
    Pre nerf this was the better Porcelain Pipe Bomb on large hitbox bosses. The nerf cuts its damage potential by a huge margin and makes the mod decent as a resource engine for Moze or if you want to set an area on fire I guess?


  • All pets’ health increased by 50%
  • Digi-Clone: health increased by 100%
    As a short term solution, this change is going to help bridge the gap between "pet-builds" and top builds, especially for Fl4k and Zane.
  • Iron Bear: health increased by 50%
    Iron Bear is a different case: the opportunity cost for entering the bear and losing your shield/grenade mods, artifact and any legendary weapons is still quite high, considering the output damage you can muster at max level with a proper setup. Another issue is weapon choices for Iron Bear: currently your two best options are either Grenade Launcher with the volley mod and the Minigun with the autocannon option, but even then the damage will still be mediocre at best. Increasing its base health is a step in the right direction but doesn't really mitigate the lack of regeneration Iron Bear currently suffers.



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    • By Starym
      If you've felt a little weaker in the new content released today and perhaps attributed it to Mayhem 4 being significantly harder, it's not just that. Apparently, as first spotted by several redditors,  the patch somehow broke all functionality of the Guardian Rank perks (aka the big bonuses you unlock with x Guardian Ranks). This appears to be affecting all platforms and is not limited to the new area.
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      Source: r/borderlands.
    • By Starym
      Update: The content is live now and Gearbox have released a trailer for it! You should get ready with our Vault Hunter guides build and item database here!
      We have perhaps the biggest patch and hotfix notes ever today, with the Taledown at the Maliwan Blacksite DLC coming today before 2AM CET, covering all the new additions as well as a lot of tuning. There's also a whole lot of character tweaks, mostly buffs, with Moze getting a lot of Iron Bear upgrades, Zane got buffs all over the place, Fl4k got a lot of pet buffs and Amara was unchanged.
      Here are the highlights from the massive notes below:
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      Notes for Patch 4
      New Content:
      Takedown at the Maliwan Blacksite
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      Hotfixes are separate from the update and applied at the main menu when Borderlands 3 is connected to the internet. Unlike updates, hotfixes are not permanent—they are temporarily stored in memory during the game session and lost upon exiting Borderlands 3. To ensure that you receive hotfixes, make sure that your system is connected to the internet when Borderlands 3 boots up and hang out on the Menu screen until you see the background change (right now, you're looking for pumpkins)!
      Addressed a reported concern that the Legendary Maliwan "Recursion" ricochets sometimes failed to target ghosts Adjusted Rampager's item pool to allow for specific Legendaries to drop Addressed a reported concern that "Boom Sickle" sometimes showed incorrect part text. We still have a lot of things that we're working on, including additional performance and stability updates, Mayhem updates and 2.0, skippable cinematics, and more. As always, we appreciate the feedback and support we've seen from the community. If you experience any issues with Borderlands 3 or today's patch, please submit a ticket to support.2k.com.
      We have the biggest patch notes so far featuring a massive amount of fixes and improvements.
    • By Starym
      Update: the Maliwan takedown is now live and you can check out the trailer and full (huge) patch notes here!

      In case you haven't tried out Borderlands 3 yet and have an Xbox One or Playstation 4, it's free for the extended weekend! Starting today and until November 24th you'll be able to play the game for free, including it's currently running Halloween Terror event and the new raid content coming today, the Takedown at Maliwan's Blacksite!
      Speaking of the new content, let's take a look at what's coming :
      4-player co-op mission at level 50, with matchmaking a new Mayhem level 300 total bank space legendaries will be assigned to bosses as dedicated loot more vending machines will pop up throughout the world new cosmetics lots of bug fixes and improvements
    • By Starym
      We have a whole lot of new stuff for Borderlands 3 in case you haven't noticed already, from new Vault Hunter guides to an item encyclopedia! On the build side of things we have quite a few new guides since the last time we checked in, with all four Vault Hunters getting some love.
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      Sheriff Amara (Siren) Build
      Fl4k (Beastmaster) Gamma Burst Radiation Pet Build

      Moze (Gunner) Bulletstorm Build
      Moze (Gunner) Boss Killer Build
      Moze (Gunner) Bottomless Mags Maliwan Build
      Moze (Gunner) Endless Rockets Girl Build
      Zane (Operative) Sub Zero Build  
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    • By Starym
      The first major/paid Borderlands 3 DLC is coming somewhat quicker than expected, as the Handsome Jackpot heist will be here in less than a month, on December 19th! We're looking for a vault again, but a different kind this time, as Handsome Jack's casino (which is in space, of course) is the setting of this new adventure. The DLC will bring the usual new stuff, with legendaries, cosmetics, side missions, crew challenges, enemies bosses and even emotes! We're also going to see a lot of new faces as Moxxi puts together her crew for this heist, as well as some familiar ones, such as Timothy, Jack's doppelganger from the pre-sequel and a whole lot of loader bots.

      No word on the mechanical side of things yet, though, as we know there won't be a new Vault Hunter, but we should be getting some type of upgrades or new progressing for the existing ones.
      The major DLC was announced on the Borderlands show, which also talked a lot about this week's Maliwan Takedown free DLC, which is also bringing a whole lot of new stuff which we'll cover in a separate article.
      Handsome Jackpot (source)
      Moxxi's assembling a crew to plunder a derelict space station casino and you've proven yourself worthy of joining her ragtag team of "experts." Successfully battle your way through Hyperion security forces and crazed casino-goers to reach a safe loaded with Eridium, cash, and all-new Legendary loot!
      This once-thriving destination is packed with unique zones worthy of Handsome Jack's lavish lifestyle and dirty dealings but has been on total lockdown since his death.
          You Ready For This?
      To reach The Handsome Jackpot you need to have played enough of the Borderlands 3 story to have access to Sanctuary III.
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      Walk away with Legendary weapons and gear and expand your collection of customization items with Vault Hunter Heads & Skins, Weapon Trinkets, an ECHO Device Skin, and new Emotes.
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