Guide for playing a tank / brawler style Brick character.
Other Borderlands Guides:
Brick is Borderlands' berserking beast, specializing in melee, survivability, explosives and rocket launchers. He makes a great tank style character. I'm not a fan of rocket launchers in the game through, I find their mechanics a bit wonky.
Brick is my favorite Borderlands character to play slightly edging out Lilith.
Brick's action skill is Berserk. Triggering Berserk causes you to go into a state of rage. While Berserk, aim and fire will instead cause you to throw a punch. You also gain resistance to all damage and you regenerate health while berserk is up. Berserk lasts for 18 Seconds by default with 60 second cooldown.
Berserk is really great in playthrough one. You're tearing around bashing people in the face, it's lots of fun and the damage resistance and health regen helps while doing so. Second half of playthrough 2 and throughout 2.5 it's not as good. Incoming dmg spikes a lot and it's a lot easier to gun people down then get in range and hit them with your fists.
Still, it can be useful in situations and it's not like the other classes' action skills are all that great overall either. Compared to the the later entries in the series the action skills aren't too game changing. Berserk can also be used as a free heal between fights. Pop berserk to trigger it's health regen and run towards your next fight. Entering menu and exiting should interrupt berserk early letting you wail on them with guns.
Brick has the following skill trees:
- Brawler - Focuses on improving melee combat abilities.
- Tank - Focuses on improving durability in combat.
- Blaster - Focuses on enhancing weapons skills, with an emphasis on explosive weaponry.
The Tank tree, then the Brawler tree are your primary trees. If you level up to max level you should also have some points to put into the Blaster tree as not all skills in the other tree are really worth getting.
Maxx out to buff your melee dmg
Increases the duration of berserk. Never felt much need to have a longer berserk and I often cut it short in later playthrough anyway. One point at most.
Sting Like a Bee
Punching while Berserk causes you to dash forward an additional amount. Getting closer to the target is good.
Killing an enemy increases your melee damage for a few seconds. Not as useful as similar skills with guns as with guns you can immediately start shooting somebody else but with melee you have to get into range first.
You won't need cash. Don't waste any points on this.
Decrease the cooldown of Berserk. Much better than Endless Rage imo. Better to have the skill up when you need it then have it extend when you don't need it.
Killing an enemy while berserk will grant health regen. Absolutely maxx if you're planning on meleeing.
Hardened / Safeguard
These two skills will make you much tankier. Hardened will buff your health pool while safeguard will buff you shields. More shields mean you'll be able to take more incoming damage before using health. More health means you'll stay alive longer when your shields are down. Maxx out both quickly.
Gives your melee attacks a chance to Daze enemies. I'd prefer to kill the target as fast as possible and go onto the next one instead. Up to you.
Grants a short term buff to damage resistance after killing an enemy. More tankiness. Maxx out.
After your shields become depleted gain a dmg buff for a decent amount of time. I didn't have it in my build but it should be a good skill, if there is another skill you didn't like then this is a good replacement to look at.
Maxxed out you'll respawn after a FFYL proc with full shield and most of your health. You also have a lot of extra time to get procs in FFYL before succumbing. I often found myself dying on purpose so and using FFYL as a free heal.
Grants you a boost of shield regen when they go down further helping your survivability. Maxx out.
Increases your reload speed reduces weapon recoil. Good all around skill, worth maxxing quickly. Faster reload means you're spending less time not shooting. Less recoil means your accuracy will be better.
Killing an enemy increases your damage with all weapons for a few seconds. Good, all around skill worth picking up when you have free points. You can switch between targets quickly with guns so the dmg buff will come in handy.
Only useful if you're using rockets. Pass.
Increases your resistance to explosive damage. Up to you I guess, not sure how much explosive damage there's actually in the game from enemies.
Liquidate / Endowed
Only work with explosive damage. If you're don't have any explosive damage they are useless. Endowed will buff damage while Liquidate will reduce berserk cooldown. Endowed is probably more useful with extra damage while you can get straight up cooldown reduction in Brawler tree instead of Liquidate.
Killing an enemy increases your Fire Rate with all weapons and causes you to regenerate rockets per minute. Bonus to fire rate is useful even if you're not using rockets. Worth maxxing if you're unlocked up to it.
For reference, these are my Brick's skills at lvl 69.
Sniper rifle - Volcano
You may be wondering why a sniper rifle is included in a tank build character. This is more of a personal preference of mine and you are welcome to change this to something else if you want. I like to have one weapon slot used as 'The Long Range Option'.
Sometimes there is an annoying enemy you would like to take out first or is in a hard to reach place. This lets you take them out easily and with precision. Brick has synergy with Rocket Launchers but I found their mechanics really wonky in the original Borderlands and never really clicked with them so used a sniper rifle instead for long range.
I use the Maliwan Volcano pretty much exclusively for sniping. This is because of its excellent immolation DOT. Immolation is extremely potent in Borderlands and works on nearly everything. With the Volcano you don't need to worry about lining up headshots which can be a pain in the ♥♥♥ in an active firefight and instead just need to hit them once then duck behind cover and let the DOT do the finishing damage.
SMG - Hellfire / Double Anarchy
'The Medium Range Option'; SMGs are really excellent in Borderlands. A decent scope and you'll be able to shred your enemies apart in a whirl of bullets. My two favourites are the Hellfire and the Double Anarchy.
The Hellfire specializes in DOT damage. Each hit inflicts an unique DOT on the enemy. Fire a few rounds into the enemy and the accumulated DOTs will burn through their hp in no time. The Double Anarchy specializes in putting out lots of bullets fast. Good for straight up DPS.
'The Short Range Option'; shotguns do lethal damage at close range. Charge forwards and close to people and blast them in the face. You have large amounts of shields and health so it won't be a big issue. Dying close to enemies means its easier to get a FFLY proc to respawn as well.
I don't have a go to favourite. Usually just use whatever I like the most at the time. I do prefer to use shotguns that are easy to aim at close range instead of those with special discharge or waves. You should also absolutely avoid rocket shotguns as they are flat out terrible.
Filler Slot - Whatever You Want
The fourth weapon slot is your filler slot. You can use this for a BIS gun you found of another type, for a different elemental damage (ex: a corrosive weapon if you're other three options don't cover that), to level up weapon skills for another weapon type, etc.
Other Weapon Types
- Rocket Launchers - Personally I found the mechanics wonky, if you can make them work you can go ahead and use them if you want.
- Pistol Revolvers - Usually either terrible or great depending on the type. If you find a good one it can go into your filler slot.
- Pistols - I guess their so-so.
- Combat Rifles - Good but I prefer SMGs as the medium range option. You can use as your filler prefer or replace the SMGs entirely.
- Eridian - My second least favourite weapon type after rocket launchers, their recharge mechanics aren't to my liking, I'd rather have a weapon that I can unload with.
You start off with with only 2 weapon slots. Use one slot on a shotgun, the other becomes your filler slot.