Hello fellow readers! IrishPride here to give my quick impressions of the new Borderlands 2 class, Krieg the Psycho.
First off, if you still haven't played Borderlands 2, what is your problem? If for some reason you still need convincing whether you should purchase it or not, check out my Borderlands 2 review here. If you need some more convincing, check out our write ups for best shooter of 2012 here and our overall game of the year winner here. Needless to say, you need to play Borderlands 2.
Now, back to Krieg the Psycho. Krieg is an all you can eat badass. I was skeptical at first to purchase the DLC ($9.99) to get Krieg because his main action skill, Buzz Axe Rampage, is a melee based skill. When I play BL2, I want to shoot! There are thousands of millions (yeah, I said it) of gun combinations and I enjoy mixing and matching them. But, to play a character who's focus is on melee, I was hesitant. I pushed my reluctant notions aside and decided to purchase Krieg the Psycho so I could inform all of you.
Like any new vault hunter, the first few levels can be very tough. You don't have any decent weapons, very little health and almost no shields to speak of. So yes, I died a few times. I wanted to stop playing and blame Krieg for being a horrible class, but I knew it's always like this for me when starting a new class. I pushed through the early goings and continued on. Krieg's Buzz Axe Rampage action skill is extremely entertaining. At first glance his skill may look underwhelming because it has a cooldown of 120 seconds. I'm no math major, but I do believe that's two minutes. Luckily, you can put skill points in certain trees to lower the CD rate, which you'll want to do because it is so satisfying to use your buzz axe on your foes.
The skill trees for Krieg are all unique; which will allow for multiple builds when you get bored playing with one. His first skill tree is entitled Bloodlust. The Bloodlust tree focuses more on using guns more so than his action skill. As you damage enemies, you receive stacks of bloodlust that will gradually stack to a max of 100, as long as you're damaging enemies. Otherwise, stacks begin to decay if you haven't dealt damage within the last three seconds. Bloodlust stacks give you a small percentage buff to Krieg. And unlike the Mechromancer's Anarcy stacks, you can reload without fear of losing all your stacks. But, again, they will slowly decay over time. Lucky for you, there are a lot of enemies to be killed in BL2. The final skill in the bloodlust tree is an appropriately named skill called Bloodsplosion. First off, the name itself is a huge win. Secondly, it's a cool skill to have. When you kill an enemy with a certain elemental weapon, the enemy will explode with the corresponding element, damaging nearby enemies. If you are using a weapon that doesn't have an elemental property, then the enemy will still cause an explosive nova. What makes Bloodsplosion even more powerful, for each stack of bloodlust you have, the overall damage is increased by 5%. Logically, if you're fighting enemies with a bloodlust stack of 100, that's 500% increased damage, not too shabby.
The middle tree is my early favorite. In the Mania tree, Krieg focuses on taking damage. You read that correctly, Krieg thrives on taking damage. It takes your brain awhile to adjust to run into the bullets instead of taking cover. The Mania tree is your melee tree, in that the majority of skill points in the tree will boost your action skill. An early skill you'll want to invest in is Fuel the Rampage. This five point skill will allow your long CD of your action skill to be greatly reduced. Every time Krieg gets hurt, the CD of you Buzz Axe is diminished and when his shields are depleted, your CD rate is decreased at an even greater percentage. This early skill will allow to smash faces at a more rapid pace, which is never a bad thing in BL2, since everyone wants to kill you. The final skill in the Mania tree is pretty boss. Release the Beast allows Krieg the Psycho, well, to go PSYCHO! If you activate your action skill when you have less than 33% health, you instantly refill your health and you literally transform into a badass psycho that does +100% melee damage alongside a damage reduction of 50%. If that didn't tickle your fancy enough, your Buzz Axe Rampage skill is instantly recharged afterwards. How badass is that? Just go into a group of people, get shot up until you're almost dead and activate badass psycho mode! Then rinse and repeat to your hearts content. It is so satisfying to get in the middle of a group of enemies and melee them all to death.
The final tree for Krieg is all about fire, so unleash your inner pyro. The Hellborn tree is a nice mixture of run and gun play along with some melee damage. The main jest of the Hellborn tree is to light yourself on fire! Want to do more damage? Light your ass on fire! Want to have a damage reduction? What better way to do that than to engulf yourself in flames! There is no better way to embrace your psycho tendencies than by lighting yourself on fire! The final skill in the Hellborn tree may sound underwhelming, but since you'll be taking a lot of damage with Krieg anyway, it's essentially free damage. While on fire, Raving Retribution allows you to spawn fire balls that seek out enemies that are damaging you and explode on impact. Wait a minute, is Krieg a psycho or a fire mage...he's both!
I'm a bit ashamed to admit it, but I've had more fun with Krieg than I have had with my main character Zer0. It's a nice change of pace to run into a group of enemies instead of trying to hide in the distance and trying to pick them off one by one. If you're reluctant to purchase Krieg, shove those notions aside and pick him up. Not only does he make you feel like a badass, he arguably has the most entertaining dialog of all the vault hunters. The one regret I have about purchasing Krieg is now that I want to play nothing but BL2!