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Crystalisks are an enemy type in Borderlands 2. They appear as craggy, tri-pedal creatures that sport a large crystalline structure on each leg and two additional ones on top.

Strategy

Melee:

  • Lifting up one of its legs and pounding the ground creating a small explosion.
  • Continuously pounding the ground with a pile driver-like organ, creating shockwaves.

Long range:

  • Launching a cloud of flechettes that hit over a wide area.
  • Launching a large crystal that embeds on a surface and explodes.

A crystalisk can be killed by damaging anywhere on its body, but this is inefficient on ammo and time as the body is very resistant to damage and will deflect any bullet. However, the crystals on its legs and body are critical hit locations. Furthermore, each leg constitutes roughly one-third of the crystalisk's overall health, and are easily targeted.

Splash damage from explosive attacks will deal increased damage to these critical locations. However, a melee strike on a crystalisk's leg instantly shatters the crystals there and robs the crystalisk of one-third of its health on Normal difficulty. On True Vault Hunter and Ultimate Vault Hunter modes, they take more punishment before breaking.

Sniper rifles or other long-range weapons are also useful as the crystalisk's ranged attacks take some time to reach the target and have limited range. If quick enough, a sniper rifle can be used to destroy two or even all three of the crystals on their legs as they pull themselves out of the ground. A weapon with a large critical damage bonus, such as the Lady Fist, can also be effective at eliminating a crystalisk quickly.

The crystalisk's explosive crystals are its most devastating attack. This can be especially problematic when there are multiple crystalisks in the area. They can be destroyed harmlessly by a few shots.

Once the crystals on each leg are broken, the crystalisk will explode (which can damage anything nearby) and drop a number of yellow crystals, which are functionally cash pickups.

Crystalisks are hostile to other types of Pandoran fauna & residents, such as Varkids and Rats, both of which only aim for the body rather than the leg crystals. This makes them excellent distractions against particularly dangerous enemies, such as Vermivorous the Invincible, as unlike most enemies who will eventually die, crystalisks are virtually impossible to kill within a resonable timespam, giving Vault Hunters ample time to ward off the other threats.

Melee Strategy

Melee strikes onto a crystalisk's leg will instantly shatter its crystals, and causes it to flinch. When this happens, the attacker can quickly move around and destroy the remaining ones. This strategy can also be used as it is surfacing, potentially killing it before it could even attack.

Zer0 can use Decepti0n to quickly take down a crystalisk with melee. One 'free' critical from stealth (while the crystalisk is attacking the hologram at range) will stun the creature long enough to allow time to run around and smash the other two legs before it can recover. Krieg also has an easy time thanks to his melee boosts allowing him to readily destroy them regardless of difficulty.

Maya can easily accomplish this while they are phaselocked.

Common Variants

Volatile Crystalisk

These are the most common form of crystalisk found on Pandora and are, aside from Blue, the strongest and toughest. When two of their leg crystals are destroyed, they will actively try to hide their remaining critical location by turning away from their assailant.

Mini Crystalisk

These are young crystalisks that have not yet fully developed and are much weaker (and rarer) than adult crystalisks. They attack by getting in close and doing a ground pound or self-destruct in a large explosion that deals heavy splash damage to everything nearby.

Volcanic Crystalisk

They are only encountered in the Vault of the Warrior, emerging from lava from time to time. Their defense and attack are both weaker than ordinary crystalisks at the same level, and destroying the crystals on two of its legs is enough to kill it, instead of all three. They can be dangerous if the explosive crystals go unnoticed during the fight against The Warrior. They will continuously respawn as long as the Warrior is still alive, but instantly die when the Warrior is defeated. Unlike other crystalisks, they don't drop crystals as money but drop ammo instead.

Cave Crystalisk

These blue crystalisks are only encountered in Hayter's Folly. They are largely the same as Volatile Crystalisks but utilize shock elemental attacks instead.

Unique Crystalisks

Notes

  • Crystalisks do not have a badass variant.
  • According to the Borderlands 2 manual, crystalisks were initially thought to be the result of the Pandoran Vault's opening.
  • It has been observed that Gaige's melee attacks require more hits to shatter the crystals on the legs of crystalisks [1]. This can be countered with any bladed melee weapon allowing her to shatter them in a single strike as well, her With Claws skill allows her to destroy the crystals with melee at the same speed as other characters.
  • With their leg crystals as large critical hit locations, crystalisks may be ideal targets for completing weapon challenges involving critical hits. To this end, Blue in particular is useful as its leg crystals regenerate after some time.
  • Crystalisks are immune to elemental status effects.
  • Small formations of crystals with the same color as crystalisks can be found near the creatures in their habitat. These can be shattered with melee attacks and picked up for money in the same manner as the crystal shards from crystalisks themselves. They also count as enemies, and as such can trigger skills that require attacking one, like Get Some.

Trivia

  • Originally, all crystalisks were supposed to have critical hit points behind the gems on their legs, the gems were supposed to regenerate when destroyed after a period of time, as seen in IGN's Gunzerker Preview.
  • Crystalisks have light blue blood.
  • Seraph crystals reuse the model of crystalisk cash pickups.
  • According to Perfectly Peaceful, crystalisks were originally friendly towards humans, since they had never seen any before. They turned hostile when Dahl attempted to mine their crystals, a process that would kill the crystalisks. This makes them the only land-based Pandoran wildlife initially affectionate to humans.
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