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Varkids are the insectoid enemies found in various locations of Borderlands 2 and its DLCs. They are generally spawned as Larval Varkids from conical-shaped protrusions in the ground. Unlike other creatures on Pandora, varkids have the ability to metamorphose into higher forms as they fight on the battlefield.

When they level up, they burrow into the ground and engulf themselves in a pod. A few seconds later, the pod will burst open and release a stronger varkid. Additionally, when a varkid reappears from its pod, its health is fully restored and all status effects are nullified. The amount of time needed for a varkid to metamorphose to the next step increases with each passing step. All varkids' weak points are in their rear abdomen.

Varkid pods are also extremely vulnerable and can be destroyed with enough damage. Destroying the pod kills the varkid inside and grants a sizeable experience bonus and additional loot. However, the higher up the ladder a varkid goes, the tougher the pods become.







The chances of any given Varkid evolving depend on the number of players present in the session. It is possible to spawn Vermivorous the Invincible with only one player, although the chance of it happening is very low. It cannot spawn on Normal Mode, regardless of the number of players present.

Contrary to popular belief, varkids do not need to be harmed in order to improve the chance of evolution, nor do varkids that kill other enemies (e.g. spiderants or buzzards) have higher evolution rates.

It takes five morphs for a Larval Varkid to become Vermivorous the Invincible. Chubby Varkids are an alternate evolution of Badass Varkids but do not have a chance to morph further. The following tables show the morph chance for each evolutionary step:

Evolution Chance - Normal Mode 1 Player 2 Players 3 Players 4 Players
Larval/Blood → Adult 60% 70% 80% 90%
Adult → Badass 30% 40% 50% 60%
Badass → Super Badass 10% 20% 30% 40%
Super Badass → Ultimate Badass 0% 1% 2% 3%
Ultimate Badass → Vermivorous or Supreme Badass 0% 0% 0% 0%
Evolution Chance - True Vault Hunter
/ Ultimate Vault Hunter modes
1 Player 2 Players 3 Players 4 Players
Larval/Blood → Adult 80% 80% 90% 100%
Adult → Badass 40% 50% 60% 70%
Badass → Super Badass 20% 30% 40% 50%
Super Badass → Ultimate Badass 10% 20% 30% 40%
Ultimate Badass → Vermivorous or Supreme Badass 7.5% 10% 11% 12%
Larval → Vermivorous or Supreme Badass 0.042% 0.24% 0.7128% 1.68%

Evolutionary Limit

Varkids have a reliable timer that determines whether they are going to evolve or not. This timer should be taken into consideration to decide when the team can kill them. If a varkid doesn't evolve after the duration provided in the following table it won't evolve at all.

Varkid Form Larval Adult Badass Super Badass Ultimate Badass
Time to morph into pod 10 seconds 20 seconds 30 seconds 60 seconds 120 seconds

For example, an Ultimate Badass Varkid that hasn't evolved after 120 seconds, will not evolve, and can be killed without penalty.

It hasn't be confirmed by a reliable source if the varkids need to be active in combat or not for the stated times. Some sources[1] state that the timer will reset to zero if a varkid leaves combat before it is complete.

Other sources[citation needed] state that it has no effect and that after the first time contact is made, the timer continues even if the varkid leaves combat (as noted by their icon disappearing from the minimap. If this is the case, then the varkid will then instantly hatch upon detecting a player again, provided that enough time has passed.


  • In Fight For Your Life mode, the miniature "suicide varkids" released by the Ultimate Badass Varkids and Vermivorous can be shot down for a Second Wind.
  • Varkids will only transform when there are other varkids nearby.
  • When a varkid or any evolution of varkid begins to morph, it emits a chittering sound before entering its pod. This sound decreases in speed and pitch depending on what evolutionary step the varkid emitting the sound was in. Players may use this as a notification/warning to quickly kill the resulting pod or varkid evolution.
    • In addition, the degree to which the sound changes increases with each evolutionary step. (As in, there is little difference between the Larval and Adult's chittering, while there is a very noticeable difference between the Badass' and Super Badass' chittering.)
  • Like all other insectoid enemies in the game, Varkids are most vulnerable to hits on their abdomen (which on insects is the bulbous part in the back), not their heads/faces; enterprising players may want to bring along weapons that do significantly increased Critical Hit damage like the Lady Fist or the Fibber-especially for Vermivorous, whose gigantic size presents players with a massive, very easy-to-hit target.
  • If a varkid evolves further from a Badass Varkid while in Wam Bam Island, it will completely ignore the Super Badass stage, and evolve directly into an Ultimate Badass Varkid.
  • A hotfix on 9 November 2015 makes Vermivorous easier to spawn in a single-player game.


  • According to the Borderlands 2 guide, the 'hive' structures that varkids emerge from are actually the reproductive organs of female varkids that have buried themselves in the ground. Judging by how big some of these 'hives' are, varkids or at least female varkids can get to an enormous size.
    • Varkid goo is also noted to taste mildly of strawberry jam in the guide.
  • Varkid blood is a light green color. This is best seen when shooting one with a shotgun at close range.