Character Profile

Krieg is the Psycho class in Borderlands 2. He is able to transform into a psychotic killer. Equipped with his Buzzaxe Krieg will go on a rampage. Krieg’s playstyle differs from the other vault hunters, as with Krieg you want to take as much damage as possible to boost yourself.

Action Skill

Buzz axe Rampage: When Krieg activates his action skill he will transform into a psychotic killer. For the duration of the action skill you will get:

  • 500% Melee Damage
  • Killing an enemy will restore all your health back
  • 33% increased movement speed

Buzz Axe Rampage duration is 16 seconds (excluding penalties for health lost), with a cooldown of 120 seconds, which you can reduce by taking damage.

Skill Tree Overview

  • Bloodlust
    • The Bloodlust tree focuses on ranged combat and getting Bloodlust Stacks to improve his skills.
  • Mania
    • The Mania tree focuses on melee combat and health mechanics.
  • Hellborn
    • The Hellborn tree focuses on elemental effects, particularly setting oneself on fire.

Krieg’s skill tree builder


Though it is uncertain what caused Krieg’s transformation into a psychotic killer, the game provides evidence hinting at an antithetical personality in the past. This is established by a fractured remnant of his psyche, manifesting itself as an “inner voice” in his mind. It reveals that Krieg had previously engaged in vault hunter-esque activities, such as aiding the needy, and getting paid with loot. The voice also seeks to control Krieg’s lust for murder by limiting his victims to those deserving punishment.

Krieg’s psychosis is compared to a man driving an out-of-control truck by Anthony Burch. He cannot stop the truck, but he can try and steer it away from as many innocents as possible.

Players are introduced to Krieg as he wanders through Pandora’s wasteland, eliminating bandits with his buzz-axe. He encounters Maya, who perceives him to be hostile; she opens fire on him, inadvertently attracting the attention of a group of rats. Too focused on Krieg, Maya fails to notice the bandits approaching from behind. Krieg salvages the situation by throwing his buzz-axe at the rats, saving Maya from peril. Afterwards, Maya warms up to Krieg, and the two congregate. Krieg is last seen clinging to the train carrying the original vault hunters to Windshear Waste.


  • Krieg has a unique melee-bonus that can be performed without using a bladed weapon. This bonus increases with his level, but will be overridden once a bladed weapon is equipped. However, bonuses granted by Roid Shields will not influence this, hence making the Law and Rapier viable choices due to their +100% and +200% melee bonuses, respectively.
  • Due to this melee-bonus which goes up depending on his level, using a gun with +50% melee damage causes you to do less damage after level 61.
  • Use of the Law with the Order creates formidable effects. Half of Krieg’s health is instantly regained when melee damage is inflicted, in or out of Buzz Axe Rampage.
  • Krieg experiences less hang time than other characters during a jump. This ‘heaviness’ helps to prevent him from getting shoved around from frequent knock back effects in melee situations.
  • In the August 29, 2013 update, Gearbox removed the challenges that are impossible to do with Krieg due to his heft, such as getting atop the Happy Motel Pig sign in Three Horns – Valley.
  • Krieg’s class mod is a custom buzz axe blade attached to his belt.
  • It is possible to fire guns normally in the brief time during Light the Fuse when Krieg has no dynamite in his hands.
  • A bug can occur in which Krieg will remain in Buzz Axe Rampage after it has expired, and Krieg’s only available action is to throw his buzz-axe. There are two ways to activate this bug.
    • Getting onto the back of a Bandit Technical, waiting a few seconds, then getting off before the skill ends.
    • Getting a second wind instantly after entering Fight For Your Life while in Buzz Axe Rampage.
  • There’s also a bug where Krieg will hold his Buzz Axe after Buzz Axe Rampage ends. It happens if the skill ends while a menu is open. Krieg can’t use his axe this way, though he will carry it forever, even after changing location, starting Buzz Axe Rampage again, or dying etc. The axe will disappear after returning to main menu.


  • Krieg is one of the two Vault Hunters who employs suicidal tactics.
  • Many of Krieg’s skills and dialogue are based on psycho bandit abilities. Abilities include: exploding and throwing explosives (Suicide Psychos), breathing fire (Burning Psychos) and rushing opponents for melee (normal Psychos).
  • Krieg’s name means ‘War’ in German.
  • Krieg’s bounty is $100,000,000,000. No crimes are listed, and he is branded as “Property of Hyperion.” However, his quick-change head “I WANNA BE WANTED” lists indecent exposure as his offence.
  • Krieg’s quote, “You woke the wrong dog!” alludes to Nine-Toes from Borderlands, who uses the same line when he is introduced.
  • Krieg has no lines while under the effects of the Handsome Jack voice modulator, though he does make the same stock grunts. Additionally, enemies will not react if Krieg activates Buzz Axe Rampage.
  • Krieg often breaks the fourth wall with his quotes.
  • Based on his quotes, Krieg seems concerned with several different women. His quotes involving “she” are highly inconsistent and cannot be linked.
  • Krieg’s Buzz Axe is bandit-made and has various visual upgrades depending on what skills Krieg has investments in.
  • Krieg’s line, “It’s a bloody business, Bates,” is a reference to the series Downton Abbey, wherein a character is being fired for inadequate performance. It may also serve as a double entendre, referencing Norman Bates from Psycho.
  • Krieg references Day of the Tentacle, a 1993 adventure game when he rants “Gone are the days of the tentacle…”
  • The quote “Looks like them Duke boys are in a peck of trouble” is a reference to The Dukes of Hazzard.
  • The line, “Bloody sand, give me back my skull!” is a reference to the game 50 Cent: Blood on the Sand, in which 50 Cent tries to retrieve his diamond-encrusted skull.
  • Krieg’s quote, “From Hell’s heart, I stab at thee,” is from Moby Dick by Herman Melville.
  • Krieg’s quote while opening a chest: “What an amazing chest, Gwynevere!” is a reference to the game Dark Souls, in which a giant sized character named Gwynevere appears. Often players will find messages from other players using an in-game system saying, “Amazing chest ahead!” referencing her ample bosom.
  • Krieg’s quote “Naha, It’s like Arbor Day!” is a reference to Roland’s quote from Borderlands when finding loot, “It’s like Christmas.”
  • Krieg’s quote: “The voices said empty, hollow, and thud!” is a reference to the Rosehan Experiment where volunteers pretended to be insane to see if psychological diagnostics were valid.
  • Krieg’s quote, “RED RUUUMMMM!” is “murder” spelled backwards, which was a plot device from The Shining.
  • Krieg’s quote: “I don’t want to go!” is a reference to the Tenth Doctor’s final words before regenerating.
  • Krieg’s “Salt the Wound” quote “HURT ME MORE!” is a direct quote taken from the game “Metal Gear Solid”, in which it is spoken by the character “Gray Fox” during a fist fight with the games protagonist.

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