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I've been playing this with my girlfriend and it was really fun up to about level 35. We got some of the DLCs but find that all of them don't quite scale properly. We were kicking ass the entire time up until now.

We have been using purple or better weapons from the golden key chest. We make sure to slag things as well. I play as a commando and she plays as a siren.

We can barely scratch badasses and they take tons and tons of ammo to take down.

Any tips or advice?

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    Always shoot the critical parts of them, e.g. headshots or arms for robots. besides that, you cannot do anything. The enemies are just bullet spongy as hell in that game. Pray to RNG Jesus. – user57112 Oct 28 '13 at 6:10
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    Are you playing the dlc in the right order ? gaming.stackexchange.com/questions/101763/… – WizLiz Oct 28 '13 at 7:28
  • Play in True Vault Hunter Mode (TVHM, a.k.a. playthrough 2). The DLC for the first playthrough caps out at about lvl35-50. – MBraedley Oct 28 '13 at 10:55
  • Please specify what part of game you are having trouble with. The question is pretty blurry being worded like "we did good, now we don't". What is "now"? – Orc JMR Oct 28 '13 at 14:06
  • I have tried 2 or 3 of the DLCs and noticed that they all don't scale well when we play together. We finished most of the first DLC but it got boring, so we started skipping around to the others. We finished our first play through in the early to mid 30's and didn't do a full second play through. – Origin Oct 28 '13 at 17:12
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As noted in the answers to my question about DLC and levels, the DLCs scale to your level to a certain extent. If you were steamrolling in the main game in your low-to-mid 30's, but are having problems with Hammerlock or Tiny Tina's DLCs, chances are good that the enemies are just closer to your level now than they were before. You've already listed the things I would do in this case - go roll on the Golden Key box, focus on slag first, etc.

If you've beaten "Normal" and then jumped into the DLCs, are you sure you're still on your Normal playthrough? Since you can start the DLCs any time, it's possible you went into True Vault Hunter Mode and then immediately went for the DLCs, which are meant to be played after the main campaign. Worth a double check, at least.

As another Normal/TVHM note, you can go play TVHM for a few levels and the drop back into Normal for the DLCs again. The DLCs on the first playthrough won't scale to your level past the mid 30's, so you can outlevel them and then return to them to steamroll.

Some DLC specific notes:

  • If you're playing Torgue and trying to repeat the tier 3 levels on some of his quests (notably Bar Room Blitz) - check the level - these are maxed out and almost certainly impossible on your first playthrough.
  • Hammerlock's Hunt is a really tough DLC all around. The elemental Witch Doctors are a real pain, even if you've leveled up properly.
  • Similarly, some enemies and boss fights can be super challenging in Tiny Tina's DLC. Some enemies regenerate, and there are many quests that require a lot of endurance.

As a Commando/Siren combo, there are some specific things you can do to survive better. The Siren should probably focus on survivability and elemental damage, with things like Res, higher elemental chance, and faster Phaselock cooldowns. Meanwhile, use the Commando's turret to tank, and have the Commando hide between turret deployments. If the turret is tanking and the Siren hangs back to hand out emergency Res'es, you can make slow progress even when the enemies are tough.

  • Thanks for this response. I'm going to check out the levels and the gear a bit and report back. – Origin Oct 28 '13 at 17:16
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Use the guns that you find in the DLC's cause they have some of the best kind of guns in there. ALWAYS open/break the chest and other things. I personally like the gun that you get in the minecraft easter egg and it can help in the long run if you get it at a high level.

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If you're still playing a Normal mode character at level 35 and have finished the main story line, switch to True Vault Hunter Mode, then start back through the main story. You will find that you gain the next few levels relatively quickly. This is because you're no longer straining to get XP just from killing baddies. You're completing missions, which gains XP much faster.

The Hammerlock's Hunt DLC is particularly difficult at level 35 in Normal mode, even though it's supposed to be scaled to level 30+. I gave up on it until I got my character up to level 41/42 by playing TVHM for a while, then coming back to Hammerlock's in Normal mode. I rarely use launchers in BL2, but for witch doctors, out comes the launcher. Homing area-of-effect grenades are also good, because witch doctors move slowly most of the time. Witch doctors have a fast-move mode, usually some kind of tornado form; when this happens, don't try to hit them, just run away. Use the time to reload and let your shields regenerate. The spheres are also tres difficult.

I just completed Hammerlock's again in TVHM at level 52, and found the going a lot easier.

I found Tiny Tina's DLC a bit easier to handle in the mid-30's. The most memorable difficulties I had were dodging skeleton arrows. Through some miracle, all BL2 baddies using thrown weapons — grenades, arrows, spears… — can not only throw them with uncanny accuracy over great distances, they can even do so when there is an obstacle in the way. This doesn't prevent them from knowing exactly where you are! BL2 baddies also have the wonderful ability to make grenades stick to the ground right where they aimed them. So: learn to dodge and jink!

Once you've gotten a few levels up, you can go back into the DLC on Normal mode. You'll find things a little easier now. There is no penalty for switching modes in Borderlands 2. Your inventory stays the same between the two modes, your XP stays the same, etc. All that changes is the mission progress and the level of the baddies in each mission. If you save a Normal mode character in an area of the map that your TVHM character has also unlocked, you will even start back up in that same area when you change modes.

Finally, when you're running into a difficult patch, switch to another DLC or mission, one with a lower difficulty rating. Killing the baddies in that lower-level mission won't get you a whole lot of XP, but you may find an item that will help you survive better, and the mission completion XP will still be substantial.

Oh, one more thing: consider respec'ing your character. At level 35, you should have most of your points in a single tree, and have that tree almost completed. If you have them spread across all three trees, it means you are missing high-level skills that you need now. It's okay to grab a few of the top-level skills in the other two trees, especially when it helps you make use of a character mod's bonuses. You can start filling out a second tree at level 30-35.

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