A character build in Tom Clancy's The Division 2 that focuses around high durability to enemy attacks thanks to the usage of Ballistic Shield active ability with the Deflector upgrade. With that build the character will be effective at solo play due to an absurdly high durability; it will also function well in PvP modes and Dark Zones. In this chapter you will find all the information needed to build a character focused around the Ballistic Shield.
While building a character focused around the Ballistic Shield, you will need to take care of several things before it can function efficiently. For this purpose you will need:
- A high Skill Power and Cooldown Reduction attributes. Both of those attributes are key here - Skill Power will allow you to install the best mods for the Ballistic Shield (and the healing ability - more on that in a moment) and the Cooldown Reduction will allow you to use the Ballistic Shield again quicker after it was destroyed.
- A very specific handgun - in this case it will be the Liberty pistol.
- The Ballistic Shield with the Deflector mod. Other mods to that ability are not bad, but the Deflector has no competition when it comes to effectiveness and durability.
- Increase of skill duration. This can be achieved with the Recharged talent that can be found on the main weapon, as well as Capacitive that can be rolled on an armor piece. Increasing the skill duration will increase the effectiveness of your healing ability.
Note - remember that talents can be swapped with the recalibration mechanic. The mechanic was explained in a separate chapter of this guide.
You need to use the following abilities:
- Ballistic Shield with the Deflector mod. Thanks to that mod, the shield not only will block incoming damage but will also redirect it towards the enemy that you are currently pointing at. This will cause the enemy to, quite literally, "hit himself/herself", decreasing the time needed to take out the foe. Thanks to upgrades to the shield, it will be able to deflect up to 500,000 points of damage before it will break.
- Chem Launcher with the Reinforcer mod. The Chem launcher with that mod allows the player to create a gas cloud that will repair armor of everyone standing inside of it. If you enter it with active Ballistic Shield, it will restore the armor of both your character and the shield. With proper upgrades to the ability, it will allow your shield to withstand fire from even several enemies at the same time.
Those two abilities are absolutely crucial for the build to function and should not be changed. You can change the mod of the Ballistic Shield, but you must keep in mind that enemies will go down slower.
Proper selection of equipment is crucial here as well. While collecting items you should look for the following:
- A specific pistol as your sidearm. While using the Ballistic Shield with the Deflector mod you will be limited to using sidearms only - for as long as the shield remains active, obviously. The best choice here is the Liberty exotic pistol due to its talents - one causes the bullets from the weapon to deal +100% damage to electronics (turrets, drones, robots, etc.), the second one increases the damage of the weapon significantly. If you destroy a weak point on an enemy or a piece of electronics, the next bullet from the Liberty will deal +500% damage. If that empowered bullet kills a target, it will replenish the magazine of the weapon and cause all of the bullets in that magazine to deal +100% damage.
- The main weapon with the Recharged talent. This talent causes every ability activated with full character armor to have a +25% duration, charges (in the case of, for instance, Chem Launcher) and ammo. This is an absolute must-have talent for the build to function.
- The second main weapon to fight enemies from a long distance. The pistol will be effective against enemies in close and mid ranges, but it will not allow you to fight against snipers efficiently. Due to that, you should equip yourself with a powerful long-ranged weapon - a Marksman Rifle or a Rifle.
- Up to 3 elements of armor with the Capacitive talent. This talent increases the duration of all skills by 20%. This will cause the charges from the Chem Launcher to last 20% longer (for each item with the talent). If you have three items with that talent and a main weapon with Recharged talent, each charge from the Chem Launcher will last 85% longer, restoring more armor per charge and allowing you to use the ability less frequently.
- A full Providence Defense brand set. Thanks to it you will receive Skill Power, Health and Weapon Damage. If you want to increase the effectiveness of the Ballistic Shield and Pistol Damage at the same time, you can swap this set for Richter & Kraiser.
- Two elements of the Alps Summit Armament brand set. This will give you +10% Cooldown Reduction and +% total Skill Power.
- Elements of armor with the Skill Power and, if possible, with the Cooldown Reduction attribute. Pistol Damage is important here as well, but you should focus on getting Skill Power to be able to use the most powerful skill mods.
- Specific upgrades for the Chem Launcher and the Ballistic Shield. When it comes to the former you should look for upgrades increasing healing or ammo (+Ammo) and for the latter you should look for Health and Damage that will be redirected at the enemy.
If you do not have the Liberty exotic weapon, you should look for a "regular" one that deals high damage and has a decent magazine size. A good choice here is a pistol with the Salvage talent, giving you a 50% chance that the magazine will be replenished after killing an enemy. Stay away from all of the shotguns and pistols with 6-8 rounds in a mag.
The Survivalist will be the most effective for this build. The passive abilities of that specialization will allow you to decrease the amount of damage received from elite enemies and increase both pistol damage and received healing.
How to play + tips
To sum up, here is handful of tips on how to play using this build:
- Remember how the Ballistic Shield works. It blocks damage coming from the front, it does not protect sides or the back of the character and it does not block explosion damage.
- Once the Ballistic Shield is activated, a durability bar of the shield will appear above the armor bar of the character. Monitor it all the time and react accordingly.
- Once the durability bar of the shield decreases, you can deactivate it. This will cause the shield to be reusable after 1 second. If the shield is broken before you deactivate it, it will go on a regular cooldown.
- Remember to use the Chem Launcher regularly. This ability will allow you to keep the Ballistic Shield active all the time, provided that you will use it properly and regularly. Remember that double tapping the ability causes the charge to land at the feet of your character and that the healing effect will be active as long as the character remains in the gas cloud. You should be sidestepping - instead of running around - during healing to prevent yourself from getting out of the healing zone.
- If you are using the Liberty exotic weapon, remember about its unique talents. Destroy an enemy weak point or a piece of electronics to gain a +500% damage for the next bullet. Use that bullet to kill an enemy (a headshot from a short distance should be enough to kill most enemies) to replenish the magazine of the weapon and gain a +100% damage boost for the entire mag. With proper usage of those talents you will be able to swiftly take out your enemies.
- Remember that the Chem Launcher can also heal your allies. If your teammate has low health and no armor and is incapable of healing himself/herself, use your Chem Launcher to aid him/her in combat.
- If the enemy manages to break your shield, get behind cover and wait for it to be active again. This build is centered on the Ballistic Shield and you should not be fighting without it.
- If the enemy is outside your effective range, use a main weapon to take him out. Hide behind cover and use a "normal" weapon to eliminate the threat.