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Prismatics’s Gearology

Table of Contents

Brainstormer and Reflux

The Reflux is a Corrosive version of the Brainstormer, all findings on the Brainstormer are applicable to the Reflux.

The Brainstormer creates chains and it’s easy to get lost in descriptions of what’s happening so, I’m going to use the following terminology to differentiate what the Brainstormer is doing hopefully.

Chain: the lightning effect that transfers damage from 1 enemy to another.
Link: Contains exactly 2 chains.

When the Brainstormer pellets hit a target, each pellet has a chance to create a Link. If a Link is created, then you’ll have 2 chains, 1 to a new enemy and the second either to another new enemy or back to the original.
A chain can at no point create a new Link, and that Link will always hit 2 targets.

The chains will deal 10 ticks of damage over 2 seconds. Each tick appears to count as a bullet impact and will receive buffs such as ASE bonus Elemental damage. This damage is calculated on original impact and will keep all damage buffs for the entire duration except for C-C-Combo which will fluctuate as you shoot. Amara’s personal space also has a special interaction. The damage bonus it offers will update depending on how close you are to the chained target, moving away will decrease the damage that the target takes, even if you were originally point blank when firing.

Each target appears to have a cap at of 5 Links, they can’t be affected by more than this at any 1 time. So if you’re pumped up on bonus elements and want to maximize your damage, try swapping targets after you’ve applied a few chains to the first bad guy.

There are 2 frequently asked questions that I want to address.

  1. Does the Redundant Version create more chains/Link? Yes.
  2. Do the Brainstormer chains benefit from Area of Effect damage boosts? No. The Brainstormer and its chains are entirely unaffected by splash and AoE boosts.

Credit to Prismatic and DocStrangelove

Breath of the Dying

Breath of the Dying is always corrosive, 0% status effect chance. When killing an enemy, 13 exploding orbs spread out horizontally in all directions. This number is fixed and can not be increased with bonus elements. The orbs will not hit you directly, but when they explode the splash damage can kill you, so caution is advised.

The orbs are technically explosive assault rifle shots: they receive splash/AoE and assault rifle damage bonuses. Their base damage is 6x (!) the damage dealt by the shot that killed the enemy.

Since base damage is based on the actual damage dealt on kill, this weapon double dips a lot: the orbs will again receive all bonuses like gun damage bonuses, elemental bonuses, etc. as if it were an assault rifle shot. They can also crit, so crit double dipping is possible.

One oddity of this weapon is that the bullets do not receive v2 bonuses, but the orbs do: bullet damage is not increased by assault rifle damage bonuses or skills like Personal Space, but orb damage is.

Bonus elemental damage from grenade and shield can negate the effect: if the instance of damage that kills the enemy is one of these, no orbs are spawned. However, bonus elemental damage from the gun’s anointment or e.g. from Forceful Expression/Infusion will spawn orbs. In this case, base damage of the orbs will be based on the instance of damage that killed the enemy, not on the weapon’s main damage.

Orbs will apply bonus elemental damage from all sources (including shield/grenade), except for Infusion which is ignored by the orbs. As the BotD has 0% status effect chance, bonus elements can’t apply status effects either.

Credit to Prismatic and DocStrangelove


The Clairvoyance is a relatively straightforward gun in comparison to some items in this thread. The sticky it places on crit however is worth a brief word.

Despite all appearances, the sticky does not benefit from splash or aoe damage boosts. The gun gains no additional benefits from bonus elements, neither the sticky nor the ricochet are multiplied by having more elements active.

Damage wise the sticky and ricocheting bullets get all the same bonuses as the original bullet. Effects like the amp, overkill, and gun damage are calculated at the time of firing the original bullet, whereas things like elemental multipliers are calculated on impact. These follow all the same rules as the normal damage pipeline.

Credit to Prismatic and DocStrangelove

Electric Banjo

The Electric Banjo is a legendary artifact that gives your bullets a chance to chain shock damage to nearby enemies. I spent some time googling the artifact and it appears that the artifact is guaranteed to spawn with 2 stat rolls. Both rolls will be related to the Shock element. The Electric Banjo cannot spawn with a secondary effect – such as Deathless or Flesh Melter.

The chained shock attack is based on your bullet damage. The higher the damage of the bullet proccing the Electric Banjo, the higher the chain damage. The chain receives 25.5% of your bullets damage and then applies the shock elemental multiplier.

Chain Damage = Bullet Damage x 0.25 x v1 x v2 x Shock Elemental Multiplier

Due to the nature of this bonus being calculated after everything from critical hits to even Overkill, the chain can be pushed to pretty insane numbers.

That shock damage is the Electric Banjo applying to flesh.

If you have a bonus elemental damage anointment active, the chain will also receive bonus damage. I tested Moze’s Selfless Vengeance which gives bonus fire damage and that also applied to the chains. The beam does not appear to be classed as AOE or Splash and therefore won’t trigger skills that require Splash damage.

Chain Bonus Element Damage = Bullet Damage x 0.255 x Bonus Element % x Elemental Modifier

Front Loader

You could always use a little more life insurance.

The Front Loader started as a Moze meta shield and has thankfully mostly fallen out of favor. However, there are still holdouts that use it with Deathless relics and in other shield-stacking shenanigans.

This doesn’t end up working out well. The Front Loaders bonus shield capacity (unlike Thin Red Line) comes after bonuses. Thus its effect on your overall capacity has diminishing returns the more shield capacity bonuses you have.

To put into perspective why this is bad let’s consider a Moze example:

For simplicity, I’ll assume the shields have equal base capacity. At level 50 in a fairly standard 1hp Bloodletter setup. A Front Loader would end up with about 4000 extra capacity. The catch however is that the difference remains constant even after stacking Phalanx Doctrine. So while 4000 difference capacity is impressive when comparing 40000 vs 44000, it degrades quickly, and once we add enough Phalanx to reach 60000 the other shield would be at 56000.

In the above example more shield capacity you stack the less the Front Loaders bonus means.

Any shield we compare a Front Loader to also has the advantage of optionally not sacrificing the health gate. At this point, there are a variety of attacks, from badass tink grenades to Wotan Mortars that can 1 shot anything that doesn’t have a health gate.

Good Juju

Kinda, sorta wants to end all existence.

Good Juju has a weird problem with its firing modes: one has the correct card damage while the other has much lower damage. They share no differences (that i could find) besides that.

The weapon has a crit penalty of either 45% / 50%, depending on parts: this applies to the Crit formula as:

2 x (1 - Penalty), so
2 x (1 - 0.45) or 2 x (1 - 0.50)

This results in the crit modifier being a x1 or a x1.1, instead of the usual x2. The Penalty is placed where weapon card crit bonuses would usually be.

The weapon has a stacking Post Add crit bonus on body shots. This goes up to a maximum of 500%, and each pellet hit stacks it by 20%. This means that without Playing Dirty or Two F4ng, 25 body shot hits are needed to reach the cap (6 Bursts + 1 Pellet from the 4th). This applies to the Crit formula as:

{ 2 x (1 - Penalty) } + Stack%.

The final crit formula ends up as:

{ 2 x (1 - Penalty) x (1 + Skills + GRankCrit + ClassModCrit) } + Stack%

This heavily diminishes the effectiveness of the Vault Hunter’s Crit Damage skills/boosts when using this weapon, and makes the weapon’s crit mechanic the most valuable crit boost you can have.

By itself, a fully stacked Juju without any other type of boost results in a x6/x6.1 Crit modifier depending if you have the 50% or 45% version.

Vault Hunters that have Crit Boosts should prioritize going after a good version with the 45% Penalty, but still, take higher base damage over the smaller crit penalty.

Extra elements on Shield/Nade or on Weapon do not stack it faster. Reloading/Swapping Weapons resets the effect.

Write Up and testing done by @Ratore

Green Monster

We often smilin’ at sights of violence

The Green Monster‘s Bonus corrosive damage doesn’t stack quite how the card says it does. It will start stacking when you fire your first shot, however, it won’t stop stacking when you release the trigger. Instead, the stacking will reset when you next fire a shot, swap weapons, or reload.

The Green Monster has an unlisted extra effect. Not only does it stack bonus corrosive damage but it also stacks splash damage. This effect takes 50 seconds to reach max damage and can be reset in all the same ways as the Bonus corrosive damage.

I asked Sammantix to take another crack at summarizing how it works as I’m a firm believer that this mod takes a lot to understand.

It builds up from the second you pull the trigger. For most guns, this fires a shot. For charge weapons, this can just be one click of charge. From this point on, you’re gaining stacks. If you pull the trigger again, it restarts. If you reload, it stops and goes back to zero. These stacks can be maintained in Iron Bear, allowing Bear access to the 100% splash boost.

Notably, certain charge guns act as a new trigger pull on each charge. Known examples are the Maliwan Storm and the Maliwan Recursion.

Credits to Sammantixbb, Flightx3aa and SSpyR.

Queens/Kings Call

Life is ours. We live it our way.

King’s and Queen’s Call have 2 mechanics of interest to me. The first mechanic is that they create 3 extra projectiles on crit and the second mechanic is that they have powerful lifesteal.

The extra projectiles are not simply a clone of the bullet that creates them, they have different damage and are also affected by splash/AoE buffs. The extra projectiles are not based on the critical hit damage that spawns them, but rather the damage before the critical hit multiplier, I’ll call this body damage.

Critical hit damage = body damage x critical hit multiplier

The formula to calculate the extra projectile damage is:

Projectile Damage = 1.5 x Body Damage x Splash

Note however in the time it takes for the projectiles to connect your C-C-Combo will likely of decayed. I found it more reliable to calculate projectile damage assuming I had no C-C-Combo.

The lifesteal is 12.5%, it can be calculated by the same formula I list in the Moxxi weapons section. The additional projectiles will heal for 1.5x the initial bullet healing.

Kyb’s Worth

Stand in the f**kin’ circle.

The Kyb’s Worth produces a healing aura on kill. I’ve known for a while that the aura is significant, however, I didn’t know how significant. The first surprise in my testing is that the Aura is not percent based, and will heal you the same regardless of your max health.

The healing is a function of the gun’s damage at the time of your kill. This includes any relevant kill skills you activate or stack on kill. The healing is however unaffected by the Binary prefix, the extra pellet makes no difference to the healing aura. The healing is 2 times the card damage (not including the x2 or x3). The healing appears to only be boosted by a character’s base additive gun boosts, the game generally labels these Gun Damage or Weapon Damage. Guardian Ranks, Elemental bonuses, Splash, and special multipliers all have no effect on the healing.

Healing Aura = Card Damage x 2 x (1 + additive boosts)

Loaded Dice

Feelin’ lucky?

That I even include this item is a surprise to me, however, while testing healing on the Kyb’s Worth I discovered that the Loaded Dice restores health on kill. Yes, I’ll restate that, on kill the Loaded Dice restore health.

The reason I’ve included images of 6 loaded dice is that I wanted to be sure that it is indeed the Loaded dice restoring my health. I also tested with both Moze and Amara, killing things with anything I had to hand. They all restored health on kill.

So how much health does it restore on kill? From the tests I ran, it seems to be about 17.67% of max health. All results were between 17.66% and 17.68%.

As for the math of how the loaded dice reserves health. The penalty is calculated before additive bonuses. So in the following overview of health calculations.

Max Health = [ Base Health x boosts x Reducers] + additives

Loaded Dice would be a part of the Reducers. If you try reserving health via something like a Front Loader or Moze’s Thin Red Line, that will multiply the full Max Health number.

Lucky 7

O Fortuna.

Upon reloading Lucky 7 has a chance to gain special effects. These effects can be active simultaneously, however they disappear if you reload, enter FFYL, or change maps. Entering and Exiting Iron Bear has no effect.

Special Effects

Auto Crit
      • All shots count as critical hits. Bullets receive the same purple visual effect as an amp shot. Shooting a weak point gives no further bonuses.
Full Auto
      • The Lucky 7 fires in full auto mode. You get the card’s full fire rate and any bonus fire rate you have.
Elemental Rounds
      • The Lucky 7’s shots are converted to a random element and receive all damage bonuses for that element.
Explosive Rounds
      • The Lucky 7’s shots are converted to splash damage and receive all splash damage bonuses.
      • Fires 7 Bullets instead of 1. Every bullet gets full damage.

Mind Sweeper

Brain blast!

The Mind Sweeper grenades can at first seem a bit inconspicuous, 25% chance of a critical hit to trigger seems like a stiff condition. So what damage does it do to justify this? The answer is a lot.

The grenade inherits as its base damage the damage of the crit that triggered it. Furthermore, the grenade also inherits the element from the triggering crit. So a fire vs flesh grenade (in TVHM) will do 175% of the damage of the original crit. If this wasn’t enticing enough the grenade also gets all grenade and splash damage bonuses.

MS Grenade Damage = [Triggering Crit Damage] x Splash x Grenade x V1 x V2 x Elemental Multiplier

v1 and v2 are general damage multipliers, you can find an explanation here.

This grenade is capable of triggering Pull the Holy Pin which will double the damage it deals, and comically enough give it the chance to re-trigger the Mind Sweeper and possibly proc another grenade. Which can lead to chains of exponentially growing damage.

Example of a Mind Sweeper chain

The alert and eagle-eyed among you may have noticed the possibility of double dipping on bonuses. I’ve double-checked and yes the grenade will double-dip both splash and elemental damage bonuses. So for best results get yourself Stoke the Embers and at least one of +AOE damage or +Splash Damage and apply this with a gun that deals splash damage.

Examples convey why double dipping is a big thing.

A normal gun that crits for 100 damage, will trigger a 100-damage grenade for a total damage of 200.

Say that gun deals splash and you add a 30% splash boost. It will now crit for 130 damage and the grenade it triggers will deal 169 damage for a total of 299 damage(49.5% more than without the boost).

Critical = 100 x 1.3 = 130
Grenade = 130 x 1.3 = 169
Total = 299

If you really want the damage to ramp up, use elemental bonuses that also double dip. So let’s start again with a new gun that we’ll say is fire and would crit for 50 before the elemental multiplier. In TVHM the gun will deal 87.5 crit damage. The grenade will then deal (87.5 x 1.75) = 153.1. So the total damage you dealt with is 240.6.

Critical = 50 x 1.75 = 87.5
Grenade = 87.5 x 1.75 = 153
Total = 240.6

And lastly, in case it hasn’t sunk in that this gets ridiculous let’s add 3/3 Stoke the Embers and 30% Splash damage to that 50-damage gun in the last example.

Critical = 50 x (1.75x1.3) x 1.3 = 147.875
Grenade = 147.875 x (1.75x1.3) x 1.3 = 437.34
Total = 585


One is enough.

The Monocle’s red text effect is a large crit bonus when scoped. The exact bonus is often misquoted as 500%. In actuality, the bonus is 250%. Considering the number of multiplicative critical hit bonuses the Monocle gets I don’t blame anyone for thinking the bonus is bigger than 250%.

As a Jakob’s gun, the Monocle gets a 10% critical hit bonus, furthermore as a Sniper rifle it gets another 20% crit bonus.

The critical hit multiplier for a scoped Monocle looks like so:

Critical Hit Multiplier = 2 x (1 + 0.2) x (1 + 0.1) x (1 + 2.5) x (1 + Skills and Guardian Rank) = 9.24 x (1 + Skills and Guardian Rank)

Due to how critical hit damage is calculated in Borderlands 3, the Borderlands 2 wisdom of not boosting critical hits on high crit guns no longer holds. A gun’s critical hit bonus is now multiplicative to any boosts provided through character skills or gear.

Math related to the Monocle *Test results)

I’ve already shown the Monocle used for testing. The important number is the 1461 base damage. My Gun Damage Guardian Rank is 14.41% and my critical hit bonus is 13.98%. I also have C-C-Combo unlocked so that’s another 2% multiplicative modifier.

A body shot with no other bonuses is, therefore:

1461 x ( 1 + 0.1441 ) x ( 1 + 0.02 ) = 1704.96

A no scope critical hit:

1705 x 2 x (1 + 0.2) x (1 + 0.1) x ( 1 + 0.1398) = 5130.47

And finally a scoped critical hit:

1705 x 2 x (1 + 0.2) x (1 + 0.1) x (1 + 2.5) x ( 1 + 0.1398) = 17956.6

Here we see the number has been rounded down. However, to be certain I shot twice in succession to stack C-C-Combo to a 4% bonus instead of 2, this pushed our expected crit over 18k.

1738 x 2 x (1 + 0.2) x (1 + 0.1) x (1 + 2.5) x ( 1 + 0.1398) = 18304.2


It’s a terrible day for rain.

When an enemy is hit by Amara’s action skill, this class mod spawns an elemental cloud at the enemy’s location which has a chance to apply a status effect (DOT = damage over time) on every enemy touching it. DOT damage and chance are based on those of the weapon held.

The cloud will also damage the player, so Phaseslam isn’t ideal. I recommend Phasecast and Phasegrasp and their variants.

It is triggered only on the first enemy hit, so e.g. The Eternal Fist will not cause multiple clouds. There can be only one cloud at a time, so if a new one is spawned by using Avatar, the first cloud disappears.

The way this works is that the cloud “hits” enemies with 16 ticks of very low damage spread over 6 seconds. Each of these has a chance to proc the DOT, the chance being that of the weapon held. This means that weapons with very low chances (e.g. most shotguns) have a good chance to not proc DOT. It also means that weapons with 0% chance (e.g. Krakatoa, Breath of the Dying) can’t proc it at all.

DOT damage is also that of the weapon held, only that the element will be your action skill element. This means that Nimbus can deal massive damage depending on your weapon: the highest Nimbus damage I’m aware of comes from an Ion Cannon.

Nimbus also works with kinetic weapons, in fact, kinetic weapons even tend to cause more damage. Kinetic weapons have “hidden” DOT chance and damage values (which are also used to determine DOT from bonus elements). DOT damage is calculated based on the weapon’s gun damage; since elemental versions of the same weapon usually have lower base damage, they usually cause less DOT damage than the kinetic one.

The way this works is that each weapon type/manufacturer combination has a certain DOT chance and a certain damage per second/gun damage ratio (there are a few exceptions to the rule, e.g. Hellfire). For example, Jakobs shotguns have a chance of 4% and a ratio of ×1.26, which can be observed on a Hellwalker: 900 gun damage × 1.26 = 1134 damage per second.

DmgPerSecond = GunDmg × Ratio

Damage is based on that of a single projectile, so since multi-projectile weapons such as shotguns or Maggie usually have low single projectile damage, they usually cause little DOT and as such are bad for Nimbus damage (exception: a x2 Ion Cannon has no damage penalty). However, this also means that a One Pump Chump can deal considerable Nimbus damage thanks to its high single-projectile damage. Sadly, with a DOT chance of merely 4% it is likely to not proc the effect at all.

If your gun is cryo, DOT damage can be easily calculated because cryo efficiency equals the DOT/gun damage ratio: the Ion Cannon’s ratio is ×0.6825, and a cryo Ion Cannon has 68% efficiency.

DOT damage is increased by gun damage bonuses (the ones in red in the All VH Formulas document), which means that gun damage anointments like +250% and +300% also increase DOT and thus Nimbus damage. Since the cloud can hurt you too, Phaseslam is very dangerous: causing over 100,000 damage per second to yourself is going to make you sad. +250% after Phasecast is a much safer option.

Some final notes:

  • being DOT, Nimbus damage will not heal you with Sustainment.
  • being DOT, it will not damage enemies linked by Ties That Bind.
  • Wildfire can spread Nimbus DOT to nearby enemies.
  • Allure can suck nearby enemies into the cloud.

Write Up and testing done by DocStrangelove

Pearl of Ineffable Knowledge

Knowing is half the battle

Note this is testing from a few people.

The Pearl of Ineffable Knowledge has a few mechanics at play. Starting simple it has a restricted pool of stats it can roll. It can get any 2 of Mag Size, Fire Rate, Reload Speed, Max Health, Health Regen, and XP Multiplier – Thanks SSpyR for this information.

Secondly onto the damage portion of this artifact. There are 2 effects that enter play here.

The stacking damage works a bit weirdly. Usually, stacks build in a linear fashion, something like:

1 + Bonus = 1 + ( Number of stacks x Bonus per stack)

This artifact however has exponential growth. Where each stack builds on the previous one.

1 + Stack Bonus = 1.01 ^Stacks

So at 15 stacks, you get 1.01 ^15 = 16.2% damage bonus. I’m yet to confirm where this lies in the formula. It’s not something common like gun damage, splash, or v2. I suspect it might be entirely by itself. Though this is unconfirmed.

The second component of this relics damage bonus is the when full bonus. This bonus is gun damage and will add to the gun damage skills in SoR or a consecutive hits anoint.

Credit goes to Plenipotence for working out the full stack mechanic and placing it in the formula.

Prompt Critical

Explodermaster masterexploder.

While the Prompt Critical‘s Impact mode works as one would expect, its Sticky Mode has some unique behaviors to it. Here I’ll display them in the form of:

  • Sticky Impact – Impact damage of the sticky rounds;
  • Sticky Detonation – Detonation damage of the landed sticky rounds;
  • Explosion – The explosion special effect of the Prompt Critical, activated when triggering the sticky detonation on an enemy (doesn’t quite work on a dummy).

Sticky Impact

The impact damage of a sticky from this weapon is applied in two instances that when added up result in the total sticky impact damage (and will match the weapon card damage if not affected by any modifiers). Let’s call them Primary Sticky Impact and Secondary Sticky Impact.

Landing a full shot means both of these damage instances being applied three (or four if you use the x4 variant) times, but only the Secondary Sticky Impact will bunch up into a single number, while the Primary Sticky Impact will show all of its instances separately.

Primary Sticky Impact = Card Damage x 0.80 x Gun Damage x V1 x V2 x Splash x Megavore Crit x Others
    • The Primary Sticky Impact is around 80% of the card damage, which will then also get all the other listed formula modifiers, alongside anointments and applicable bonus elements.
    • It cannot naturally crit. It may only crit through FL4K’s capstone, Megavore. When it crits through it, it’s just like a normal crit and all boosts apply.
Secondary Sticky Impact = Card Damage x 0.20 x Gun Damage x V1 x V2 x Splash x Crit x Others
    • The Secondary Sticky Impact is around 20% of the card damage, which will then also get all the other listed formula modifiers, alongside anointments and applicable bonus elements.
    •  It can naturally crit or Megavore crit, and all boosts apply.

Sticky Detonation

When shooting at the Jack dummy in Sanctuary, the stickies pretty much behave like a normal Torgue sticky pistol with an increased damage bonus per sticky, with the exception of having the split Primary and Secondary Damages on its detonation too. This makes the target dummy extremely unreliable for testing this gun.

When fighting an actual enemy, any stickies landed on the same enemy will blow up at once as a singular blast, and cause an Explosion. This Explosion is different from a Sticky Detonation, which I will cover now.

What we first need to note is what is the damage of a single sticky’s detonation. In practice, this is what matters for us, since it will be what determines the damage of the Explosion. This can be tested on the dummy if you manage to land only a single pellet. Much like the Sticky Impact Damage, the detonation also has a damage split.

When added up, this damage split results in the total detonation damage, which is x2 the total Sticky Impact Damage.

Primary Sticky Detonation = Card Damage x 1.2 x Gun Damage x V1 x V2 x Splash x Megavore Crit x Others
    • This is for the detonation of a single sticky, not multiple.
    • The Primary Sticky Detonation is around 120% of the card damage, which will then also get all the other listed formula modifiers, alongside anointments and applicable bonus elements.
    • There is no double dipping occurring, but just a flat multiplier being applied on detonation.
    • Modifiers that are applied on shot (like Gun Damage and Amp) will only apply if the landed sticky during impact had them on begin with.
    • This cannot naturally crit. It may only crit through FL4K’s capstone, Megavore. When it crits throught it, it’s just like a normal crit and all boosts apply.
Secondary Sticky Detonation = Card Damage x 0.80 x Gun Damage x V1 x V2 x Splash x Crit x Others
    •  The Secondary Sticky Detonation is around 80% of the card damage, which will then also get all the other listed formula modifiers, alongside anointments and applicable bonus elements.
    • You may notice it’s exactly the same as the Primary Sticky Impact formula, but in this case it can crit naturally or through Megavore.
    • Modifiers that are applied on shot (like Gun Damage and Amp) will only apply if the landed sticky had them to begin with.

This is where the dummy becomes completely unreliable: the Secondary Sticky Detonation will occur on every sticky that is blown up on the dummy, because you can’t really proc the Explosion on it. When facing an enemy, the Secondary Sticky Detonation will only occur once, and its damage will still be based on a single (one pellet) sticky.

This means that against an enemy, it doesn’t matter if you landed 3 or 10 stickies, the Secondary Sticky Detonation will always be as if you had only landed one when you activate the Explosion. The Explosion damage is based on the Primary Sticky Detonation, as I will display now.


The Explosion is what happens when you trigger the stickies from the Prompt Critical on an enemy. This causes all landed stickies to blow up in a singular explosion, dealing Explosion damage alongside Secondary Sticky Detonation damage.

Explosion Damage = Primary Sticky Detonation x Number Of Stickies On Target x Megavore Crit

The Number Of Stickies On Target required for the maximum damage is ten stickies. Anything more won’t grant increased damage.

    •  This means that four shots are required on target, with room for 2 missed stickies. The x4 variant of the weapon and skills like Two F4ng/Playing Dirty can make this process quicker, although you likely still want the x3 variant so you can work with better base damage.
    • Explosion cannot naturally crit. It may only crit through FL4K’s capstone, Megavore. When it crits through it, it’s just like a normal crit and all boosts apply.

Alongside this, the Secondary Sticky Detonation will occur again and display as a separate number, hitting anything on the blast radius. Unlike Explosion, it won’t cause more damage in accordance to the number of stickies, and will rather always come up as a pretty low damage value.

The Explosion Radius also increases with the number of stickies, and seems to cap at ten stickies or maybe a bit sooner (8~9? Not sure). The Explosion causes no self-damage.

Other Information & Tips

  • Fade Away crits only apply to Secondary Sticky Impact and Secondary Sticky Detonation. Explosion, Primary Sticky Impact and Detonation do not get the Fade bonus.
  • Killing an enemy that has stickies on them will (usually? always?) trigger those stickies on death, still damaging anything in the blast radius.
  • FL4K has some of the best synergies with this weapon: the fire rate boost of sticky mode alongside Megavore making up for the issue of not being able to crit on part of the Impact/Detonation/Explosion basically turns Sticky Mode into a complete DPS upgrade over Impact mode. This is enough to just kill enemies purely with the Sticky Mode and trigger explosions on demand.
  • Moze with Torgue Cross-Promotion can significantly expand the blast radius and take advantage of the blast not causing self-damage. Short Fuse can proc on the Explosion, but it might compete with the Secondary Detonation damage for a proc and result in not really impressive damage when triggering on the latter.

Write Up and testing done by Ratore


Man’s reach exceeds his imagination.

I looked at Redistributor as I was mostly curious as to why Zane’s cryo anoint has such a massive effect on it. The gun has an amped shot that produces a chain every 7th shot, this amped shot gets 50% amp. I saw this chain reach up to 2 additional targets, however, I didn’t spend enough time watching chains to see if there is any restriction on how these chains act. My best attempts at counting showed that the chains deal a total of 9 ticks of damage. So you’ll get 9 instances of damage equivalent to your amp shot.

So where do bonus elements tie into this? For the first 6 shots, the extra elements behave as normal. The 7th shot with the amp chain however plays up. Adding an extra element doubles the damage of the chains. Nothing intricate about it, take the damage you expected before and double it! Then add your bonus element % for good measure. If we add a third element the chain damage triples, and so on…


To each according to their needs.

Before digging into how the life steal mechanism on Sapper works let’s get the basics out of the way here.

  1. This com does not receive a hidden splash damage boost like Green Monster.
  2. The bonus does not affect Iron Bear.

Okay onto the life steal. The formula used is the same as all other BL3 life steal and can be found [add lifesteal link]. Thus it doesn’t benefit from bonuses such as splash or critical hits but does benefit from gun damage bonuses.

The bonus actually doesn’t cap out at 12.5% as the card says. In fact, from my testing, the bonus is not capped at all. I was able to achieve 223% life steal in my testing, though it probably would have just continued to rise if I continued to shoot. The bonus will reset if you reload, holding the trigger down through reloads does not retain the bonus.

I found it hard to nail down an exact % that it grows by each second, however, when I averaged out the numbers I did get it looks like the life steal % grows by about 11.5% every second. So after 3 seconds of holding the trigger, you’d have 34.5% life steal.


Haze amaze.

As stated on this card this gun gives a damage bonus when its front-facing shield is active. What isn’t stated is that the shield is refilled every time you get a kill. Furthermore, this damage bonus is 250% and is classified as Gun Damage. Hence it is added to gun damage skills such as Donnybrook, Phalanx Doctrine, Wrath, and Furious Attack.

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