Fist of the Elements, Brawl, or Mystical Assault?
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Like previous games in Gearbox's Borderlands series, the recently released Borderlands 3 introduces four brand-new Vault Hunters to play--FL4K the beastmaster, Moze the gunner, Zane the operative, and Amara the Siren. If Amara sounds like the one for you, then you've come to the right place.
Amara is the elemental damage dealer amongst the Vault Hunters, which isn't new for the Siren class. However, unlike her more support-focused Siren sisters Lilith and Maya, Amara is a close-quarter bruiser. Much like Borderlands' Brick and Borderlands 2's Krieg, Amara's skill trees are designed to get her into the middle of a fight where she can bring the hurt to as many people as possible. Your choice of skill tree basically determines how you want to get there. Below, we detail her three distinct skill trees and go into their respective strengths and weaknesses.
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Fist Of The Elements
The Fist of the Elements tree is built around Amara's Phasegrasp action skill, which allows her to grab an enemy and hold them in place. It's a great tree to invest in first--and the one you probably want to focus on if you're still new to first-person shooters. Early on, skills like Steady Hands--which increases weapon handling and accuracy--pair well with Phasegrasp to make it easier to shoot enemies.
If nothing else, you'll want to invest at least five skill points in Fist of the Elements to unlock its second tier--netting you the perk to switch Amara's action skill from shock to incendiary damage. Borderlands 3 begins on Pandora where there are a lot of fleshy bandits, so securing a way to deal out incendiary damage--no matter your character--should be your first priority in the campaign.
In its second tier, Fist of the Elements also gives you two excellent skills for Borderlands 3's early game: Tempest (increases elemental damage) and Illuminated Fist (increases elemental melee damage and applies action skill element to melee attacks). After that, most of Fist of the Elements skills are fairly straightforward, with most increasing the elemental damage Amara's firearms can do or helping her slow down the hordes of enemies that regularly populate the world. If you're struggling with the shooting part of Borderlands 3, then this tree will help you out in that regard.
Though not as flashy as Fist of the Elements and Mystical Assault, Brawl is probably Amara's best skill tree. It's certainly the one you want to heavily put points into if you know you'll mostly be playing through Borderlands 3 solo--as this is the tree that includes all of Amara's best defensive abilities.
Like Fist of the Elements, you want to put at least five points into this tree to unlock an additional element for Amara's action skill. In this case, it's corrosion--not super important early on but you'll be thankful for the option when armored enemies start regularly showing up about halfway through the story. Brawl's skills are tied to Amara's action skill Phaseslam, which sees her jump into the air and then careen back into the earth in an elemental ground pound. Brawl's got some great first tier skills. Root to Rise increases Amara's max health, Personal Space increases Amara's weapon damage at close range, and Clarity gives Amara health regeneration. That last one is especially good to invest in, as removing the need to purchase health packs just saves you a bunch of money early on--which is better spent on gun ammo.
Of all Amara's trees, Brawl has the best late-game perks. Regardless of which tree you focus on, putting points into Brawl should be a part of your strategy. Helping Hand(s) allows Amara to summon her elemental arms to deflect grenades and block bullets, Do Unto Others sends powerful elemental orbs at enemies who dare attack you, Blitz transforms Amara's melee into a nearly one-hit kill dash attack, and Guardian Angel allows Amara to self-revive herself. You really can't go wrong with this tree.
Mystical Assault is built around Amara's third action skill, Phasecast, which fires a ghostly elemental projection of Amara at enemies. Phasecast is probably Amara's coolest-looking skill, and it can evolve into some pretty badass secondary abilities. Unfortunately, overall, the skills in this tree don't have nearly as much utility as the ones found in the other two.
This tree encourages Amara to use her action skill more often, as it includes perks that increase the damage the skill can do while decreasing the time it takes to use the action skill again. However, all of Amara's action skills already do tremendous amounts of damage and none of them take all that long to recharge. If anything, Mystical Assault is a good tree to invest in once you've finished Borderlands 3's campaign and have started doing the endgame content--especially Proving Grounds which grades your performance based on how fast you kill enemies. Until that point, however, you probably don't need to pay attention to this tree.
Once you do think you need to speed up your action skill usage because your guns and fists just aren't cutting it anymore, there are a few skills in Mystical Assault you should pay attention to. Remnant causes Amara to send homing missiles of elemental energy at enemies after Amara kills someone--allowing the Siren to mow through foes a lot more quickly. Avatar is another good one, occasionally giving Amara the ability to use her action skill while it's still cooling down.