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Love Thumper

The Love Thumper  (often abbreviated as LT) is a unique roid shield. Its special effect is an extremely high recharge delay and a explosive nova which occurs when a melee attack hits a hostile target. Furthermore it provides the second highest roid damage of all roid shields in BL2.

A few months ago I found out that not only an increase in explosive damage but also grenade damage bonuses can boost the shields novas. Every character can boost grenade damage by raising the Badass Rank. But Axton additionally offers skills and a class mod which can increase grenade damage.

Since Krieg, the sixth Vault Hunter will be out in the near future and he also has skills that increase grenade and explosive damage I made some tests with the LT on Axton.

This is what I used for the tests:

  • two versions of the LT, one with 39304 roid damage and another with 28487 roid damage
  • an Expert Grenadier COM with +35% grenade damage, +6 to Steady and +5 to Impact
  • an explosive relic with +30% explosive damage



Test #1: How is the base nova damage calculated?

That’s pretty simple. For this test, I equipped both versions of the shield and compared the nova damage in combat. I have tested this with and without grenade/explosive damage bonuses. The results were equal. Therefore I only show the results without bonuses.

Test results:

Shield #1 with 39304 roid damage did 15722 nova damage
Shield #2 with 28487 roid damage did 11395 nova damage


roid damage x factor/mulitplier = nova damage
39304 x 0,4 = 15722
28487 x 0,4 = 11395

So, the nova damage is equal to 40% of the roid damage.


Test #2: How do grenade and explosive damage bonuses affect the nova?

For this test, I used all the above-mentioned gear (the 39k LT) and this skill setup.

These are the results:

So, this calculation is also pretty simple. The grenade damage bonus gets directly added to the nova base damage. The increase in explosive damage gets added separately, after everything else.


(nova base damage x (1 + grenade damage bonus)) x (1 + explosive damage bonus) = final nova damage
(15722 x (1 + 114,1% or 1,141)) x (1 + 30% or 0,3) = 43755

Conclusion / TL;DR

the nova damage is equal to 40% of the roid damage
grenade damage bonuses increase the base nova damage without diminishing returns
if you combine grenade damage bonuses and an explosive relic the relic will increase the nova damage for more than 30% of the nova base damage.

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