Kiss these biceps goodbye: I've got dibs on Amara in Borderlands 3


It's not just a Phase

Back when The Pre-Sequel was coming out, I called dibs on Athena, and I don't regret that one bit. Maybe I'm drawn to badass women in these games, and maybe that explains why this time around, I've got dibs on Amara. But that only explains part of why I'm taking the tattooed muscle diva. There are a lot of reasons why Amara is the best of the new Vault Hunters.

Chris already has dibs on FL4K, and that's okay with me. Because I've got dibs on Amara. Here's why.

Borderlands 3 Amara

She's a Siren.

Sirens are a big deal in the Borderlands universe. They've got otherwise inexplicable space magic powers in a world where bullets and bombs are the main forces for dominance. They're rare; only six can exist at a given time in the galaxy. And despite that rarity, they are always important players in the story of the vaults.

Lilith, Steele, Maya, and Angel have all had central roles in the Borderlands narrative, and there's no reason to expect Amara will be any different. She's continuing the tradition of space witches who we don't question because their abilities are cool and that's all that matters. In contrast with previous Sirens, she may even be more powerful: where Lilith has her Phasewalk and Maya has her Phaselock, Amara has three comparable abilities, Phaseslam, Phasegrasp, and Phasecast.

To put it another way, if Borderlands is a living room, Sirens are the rug that really ties it all together. Amara is the latest flourish on that rug.

Borderlands 3 Amara

She's the queen of elemental damage.

This ties into the Siren thing, as it was true for Lilith and Maya too, but it's noteworthy enough to bear its own section. Elements in Borderlands have always been powerful. Corrosive damage in Borderlands 1 is the best way to take down armored enemies. Slag is indispensable in Borderlands 2, especially at the higher difficulty levels. Cryo literally freezes enemies in place in The Pre-Sequel.

All three of Amara's skill trees have at least a little bit of elemental damage boosting, but her Fist of the Elements tree really goes HAM with it. It starts with an early level skill that straight up boosts elemental damage and damage-over-time duration. It culminates with a skill that adds elemental damage to every weapon she uses, so she never has to stop melting bad guys.

Long story short, if you need something set on fire, Amara is your girl. Or she would be if I didn't already have dibs.

Borderlands 3 Amara skill tree

Amara means "immortal."

There are a few different origins for the name Amara, but the most likely source Gearbox drew from is the Sanskrit where her name means "undying, immortal, imperishable." Basically, she is a goddess who cannot be killed. How important is that in a game where everything in the galaxy wants to murder and/or eat you? Pretty dang important, I'd say.

This manifests itself in her "Brawl" skill tree with the skill Guardian Angel. With it active, every sixty seconds when she goes into Fight For Your Life mode, she just automatically gets back up with full health and shield, no questions asked. She just cannot be killed. Oh, and when that happens, she also sends out an explosion, because of course she does.

Borderlands 3 Amara

Look at those abs.

Seriously, look at 'em.

Now maybe this is just me, but when The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild released and I met the Gerudo, I came to a realization: giant muscle women are awesome.

Borderlands has always been good about representing different body types, from the tween Tiny Tina to the voluptuous mechanic Ellie. It makes sense that not all women in this world are waifish and it's especially keen that a warrior like Amara would have an Amazon physique.

I just want Amara to grab me with her giant magic arms and squeeze me until my ribcage collapses, Xenia Onatopp-style. But not like, in a sexual way. Probably. The point is: she could probably do it, and that's rad as hell.

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Darren Nakamura
Darren NakamuraAssociate Editor   gamer profile

Darren is a scientist during the day. He has been a Destructoid community member since 2006, joining the front page as a contributor in 2011. While he enjoys shooters, RPGs, platformers, strateg... more + disclosures



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