Eridium Artifacts, otherwise known as Relics, have been around throughout the entire series. Originally, in Borderlands, they functioned much the same way Action Skill Augments do now. Then, in Borderlands 2, they were less drastic (but still massively beneficial) buffs that players could get from bosses. Finally, in Borderlands 3, they're a combination of the two.
This time around, Artifacts have a variety of modifiers and variables that can be applied to them, and depending on the RNG, they can get pretty absurd. However, Legendary Artifacts also have an innate benefit marked by the Diamond with the + symbol, and these effects can have entire builds centered around them. So, in order to clear some things up, we're going to look at our own personal favorites.
10 Deathless: Moze's Golden Ticket
Welcome to the reason why Moze is probably the most broken Vault Hunter. The Deathless Artifact sounds insane just from its description, but thats only the beginning. It reduces the user's max health to 1 but increases their shield capacity by 100%, their recharge rate by 25%, and their recharge delay by another 25%. Basically, it trades health for a massive bulky shield. When combined with Moze's skills like Desperate Measures and the Bloodletter class mod, she's almost impossible to kill.
This Artifact can also be used on any character with skills dependant on max health or on shield capacity. Unfortunately, it basically needs an entire build centered around it and isn't something that should be thrown on all willy-nilly.
9 Otto Idol: A Great Healing Charm For Glass Cannons
This is our personal bread and butter Artifact. It's the perfect life regain for experimental builds, or while leveling a character to 50. Basically, any Otto Idol Artifact has the innate effect of giving the player a percentage of their max health back on every kill. Needless to say, players kill a lot in Borderlands.
This percentage ranges, but tends to stay between 15 and 20%. It's some pretty absurd life regain honestly. We love to use it on our Elemental "Ties That Bind" Amara build, as we can ignore the Soul Sap augment and use the Stillness Of Mind modifier to bubble every enemy in sight. There's no set drop for this, though, so its a bit hard to farm for specifically.
8 Safeguard: Actually Makes The Slam Useful
Hey, look, an artifact for the few players that actually like to use the slam attack! Personally, we can't stand it, but there are enough artifacts and modifiers in the game that augment the slam, so we could actually be missing out on a source of some crucial damage. In any case, the innate skill of Safeguard is pretty crazy. Whenever a player performs a slam attack, they take at least 50% reduced damage for the next 5 seconds.
Again, this percentage varies, but the number stays pretty high. This Artifact also tends to have a modifier that increases both movement speed and damage against frozen enemies, so its perfect for those going for that Iceman Zane build.
7 Victory Rush: Berzerk, But Better
There are a couple of purple and green artifacts spread throughout the game that have a modifier on them which temporarily buffs their user based on a couple of variables, but this duration is usually ridiculously short, so we ignored most of them. Victory Rush is the best of the best in this regard though, as its duration is sixty seconds and re-procing it is quite simple.
Its a perfect artifact for Mayhem modes, as Bad*sses multiply like rabbits there, and it'll help speedrun TVHM. Make sure to try and nab one with a Max health or Weapon Accuracy modifier, though, because all its other potential modifiers are sub-par.
6 Unleash the Dragon: A Fiery Fire-Based Flame Charm
Initially, we thought Unleash the Dragon was bad. Then again, when you're playing an Elemental Amara, your element proc chance is almost always at 100%. That said, this particular artifact is great for players who need to melt through chunky Red bars. It's also actually great for Amara!
Why? Because it's the cornerstone of her fire melee build. We're sure that's not the only one that'll come out with this rocking Artifact at its core. It doesn't seem like much on the surface, but Unleash the Dragon is absolutely an artifact worth the grind.
5 Loaded Dice: Hard Mode For Farm Fanatics
So far, all of these artifacts have been geared towards increasing the Vault Hunters' killing potential. Whether its to keep them safe or increasing their base damage, most Artifacts act as passive buffs to the player. However, the Legendary Loaded Dice Artifact actually nerfs the player, taking away 75% of their max health! So, why would we be recommending it? Because it pumps up the Luck stat by a whole bunch in return!
This means that the chances of getting Legendaries, especially in Mayhem 3, are greatly improved. Think of it as an extra hard mode that increases the 500% Loot Drop chance in Mayhem 3 to something like 800%. Plus, there's a huge list of potential modifiers and variables for it, so it might even be beneficial depending on the RNG.
4 Static Charge: A Static Shock Variation For Melee Builds
Remember how we threw shade at the slam mechanic earlier? How we never used it and were probably missing out? Well, that's because we were two busy sliding at every conceivable opportunity. Maybe its because we're huge fans of games like Vanquish, Warframe, and Metal Gear Rising, but long powerslides are just pure fun.
This Static Charge Legendary buffs the move substantially, turning the slide from a disengagement mechanic into an entirely aggressive one. Plus, any Legendary that can give bonuses to Shield Capacity is worthwhile in the late game.
3 Electric Banjo: Careful, There Might Be A Risk Of Rain
Not many Artifacts have enemies that they're more likely to drop from, but the Electric Banjo is one of those rare instances. This item references Risk of Rain. It's a world drop, but has a greatly improved chance to drop from the Zer0 Assassination Targets, the Psychobillies on Eden 6. Essentially, it's a passive version of the grenade mod Hex or Storm Front.
Every single bullet fired has a 20% chance to shock the enemy and cause electricity to arc to another nearby foe. That has the potential to be absolutely insane! 20% for every bullet? Not once every three or something? That's perfect for an Endless Mags Moze or maybe even a Shock-dependent Elemental Amara. Combined with one of the many guns that already ricochet between enemies, this could potentially cause a full-on lightning storm.
2 Commander Planetoid: With Our Powers Combined... We Irradiate?
Face-Puncher synergies are awesome, and we're running out of Legendary artifacts. As such, here's one of the most fun combinations of all. The Commander Planetoid Artifact changes the element a players melee causes every 5 seconds, and it increases said elemental damage by 60%.
Now, imagine that on a Face-Puncher build. A gun that changes between buffed-up elements constantly? It sounds like a blast! Additionally, this mod can get the Berzerker buff, further increasing the passive buffs each melee has.
1 Moxxi's Endowment: Yep, It's A Moxxi Item
Finally, it's the Moxxi-based one, so of course, it's "dripping" with innuendos. There's not all too much to say about this last pick honestly, it just gives more combat EXP. Frankly, not a whole ton of it, either. Still, more EXP is always better, especially since it buffs each individual instance of EXP.
The real crazy stuff comes from its variables and modifiers, as it has high potential for some good ones. Knife Drain in particular is great, because it adds 75% Life Steal to each melee attack.