You’re going to need to prepare yourself before you can go looking for the Mine Key in the arid hills. Time to complete some more of those bounty board quests. We’ll be searching for the lost diaries of Patricia Tannis, a scientist who came to Pandora searching for the vault. As you listen to each entry you’ll find out more about the vain doctor as well as witness the loss of her sanity.
The first journal can be found in Bone Head’s hideout. Follow the main road to his hideout and you’ll find the journal attached to the camp’s generators on the northwest side of the camp. You may have to deal with Bone Head and his bandits again if you’ve been away from the area for a long stretch of time. Pick it up to listen to the mad doctor’s first rant.
Head south to Nine-Toes bandit outpost to find the second journal entry attached to a steel pillar near the Fyrestone Coliseum. Tannis gives her less than favorable opinion of the locals in this entry, which isn’t all surprising given her personality.
Zephyr Station will be housing the third entry. Find yourself a Catch-a-Ride Station if you’ve been on foot thus far. Head towards the station and be prepared for a fight with more bandits. Clear them out of the area and claim Tannis’ third journal entry.
The Fourth Journal Entry can be found near the gate that leads to the western part of the Arid Badlands. The diary is at the top of the set of ramps leading to an outpost tower. The journal can be found in the tower when you reach the top.
Tannis’s fifth and final journal entry can be found to the far west beyond Zephyr Station. The location is a shanty town hidden behind a large bandit fort. Instead dealing with every enemy in the fort grab a runner and follow the main road drive off into the path that leads to Zephyr Station. Instead south, follow the path west that runs along the cliffs edge. Check your map and follow the objective marker and you’ll get there in no time.
A group of bandits and a flock of rakk will be guarding the area so get to work on killing them. Use shotgun against the rakks and use your best weapons against the bandits. With the area clear you’ll find the last journal lodged between a group of grey barrels.
Head back to the bounty board for your reward as well as some advice from Tannis on how to forget what you heard.
Allo, readers, gamers and gamer-readers (it’s a real word). If you’ve been following my Borderlands strategy guides, you’ll be pleased to know that I’ll be creating a strategy guide for Borderlands 2 as well, so it will be more relevant than the Borderlands guide. If you’re looking to follow this extensive guide you’ll be able to follow it at Non-Fiction Gaming, under my alias, Senior Stiv.
My first post will go live sometime this week, all depending on when I receive the game in the mail (today, hopefully). I will continue to provide Borderland strategies here at The Stick and The Button. I hope you all enjoy the new strategy guide and find them just as useful as the ones I write here. Peace!
Image Source: incgamer.com
With the rakk dead and the turbines turned back on, it’s time to head back to Zephyr Station to fulfill the last mission and your main objective: finding the mine key to Headstone Mine.
Head back south from Shep Sander’s location to Zephyr Station. Getting inside can either require you walking in without any trouble or another gun battle with the bandits. These two scenarios depend on how quickly you head back to the station after finishing up the “Braking Wind” quest. Heading back immediately will make getting inside a breeze while turning off the game to come back later will bring back every enemy. If the latter happens to you simply follow the same tactics for getting into the area from braking wind.
Take a runner and follow the trail around the right side of the station. Wipe out all of the skags along the road leading to the station. This will keep them from harassing you while taking out the bandits. After the skags are done with start taking on the bandits around the outside of the station. Go from the right side of the station to the left side of the station, so you can sweep them all from the area. One Badass character may appear when attacking the right side. Your other threat will come from above by two raiders on top of the station. Take them out quickly so they no longer pelt you with annoying shots.
Go around to the left side of the station to finish off the rest of the bandits and you’ll be left alone to find the key. However, once you go inside the station instead of a key there is a note on the table (from Sledge of course). Turns out he took it to the Arid Hills to one of his secret hide outs. Looks we’ll need to pay his friends a visit.
It’s time to get familiar with Shep and the key to Sledge’s mine. To begin clearing out the southern area Shep needs you to take out some of the rakk in the area. You only need to take out ten so it isn’t much of a challenge.
Head south from Shep’s outpost and take a slight turn southeast towards the objective marker. You’ll come to a rakk nest and once your close enough the little, winged buggers will start popping out. If you want to stick with the shotgun strategy I suggested earlier for killing rakks, but there much better way that won’t get you hurt or killed. Take a runner (specifically with a machine gun mount) and climb into the mounted turret when the rakk appear. Lay your finger on the trigger and unleash a maelstrom on the flock. You’ll rack up ten kills in no time.
Once every rakk is dead head back to Shep to claim your reward.
With the gate open to the western half of the Arid Badlands you’ll certainly have plenty more places to explore. Not long after you open the gate, Zed calls you back to Fyrestone for a bit of a chat. He appreciates you opening the gate, but there are still bandits roaming the area and Zed knows how to remedy the situation. He offers you a reward all the same for doing the job.
Misc: Storage Deck Upgrade
Zed sends you to a friend of his Shep. Shep knows more about Sledge’s whereabouts in the area, so it’s best to talk to him to find out more. You can find Shep only a few feet west from the recently opened gate, in a little shack with a health vending machine. Say what’s up to this new quest giver. He’ll be offering three quests at the moment. You have more bounty board quests as well, but two are beyond your abilities currently, so it’s best to stick with what Shep is offering before you tackle more of the bounty board quests.
With the Catch-A-Ride station all fixed up you now have full access to Scooter’s vehicles. You start out with just the runner, but you can choose to equip it with a machine gun or rocket launcher mount and, as Scooter puts it, you can paint it with a bunch of pretty colors to boot.
While you may have a quicker means of transportation you still don’t have full access to all of the Arid Badlands. The bandits aren’t making it any easier either as they’ve put a gate across the main road leading to more of the Badlands. But, Scooter knows how you can get around this annoying obstacle, especially now you have access to a vehicle: you’ll need to jump the Piss Wash Hurdle.
First return to the Catch-A-Ride station you fixed in the Bone Head mission. Spawn a Runner and hop on inside. Follow the main road until you see the gate the bandits have placed across it. There is a small path from the main road heading southwest. This path will lead you to the Skags nest you cleared to get to T.K.’s food. There you’ll notice a massive metal ramp as you face west; this is the Piss Wash Hurdle.
Leave enough distance between you and the ramp to make the jump. Drive forward at full speed and as soon as you hit the ramp hit the boost button. You’ll be launched across Piss Wash, landing on the other side safe and sound. Time take care of those bandits and get that gate open.
Once on the other side you’ll need to turn right. Continue to follow the road until you reach the gate. Bandits will begin firing at you, but they won’t be your only problem. A skag nest is across from the bandit shanty town so expect some trouble from the nasty dogs. There are only a few bandits and some short tempered elder skags and whelps, so the situation is should be relatively easy to handle. Search the small shack for some money and ammo.
The objective marker will lead you to the switch to open the gate, as well as your way of handing the quest in. Congrats!
Okay, so you’re not quite ready to take on Bone Head, yet. It may take some more experience to hit that comfortable level 10 to take him on. Lucky for you T.K. has plenty of work for you to do. Pick up both quest, but go for T.K.’s Life and Limb first. T.K. wants you to get revenge on the bastard skag who took his leg. The pooches name is Scar and from what T.K. says about him he isn’t to be trifled with. Bring your best firepower as Scar won’t be wretching it up anytime soon and I’m sure you don’t want to deal with it coming out the other either.
Head to Skag Gully. Walk south, the same direction towards Nine-Toes hideout. Instead of continuing south under the arch, take a left from the skags nest you originally cross over. It will lead you down a sloped trail towards the quest objective. Continue in the northeastern direction and around the small mound jutting out from the ground. A skags nest lies on the other side with some tougher Skag Whelps and your first encounter with some Spitter Skags. The name explains it all. These vile little creatures hawk acidic spit your way which needless to say can do a number on you.
Once their dead continue along the trail. You’ll come across another nest as you head up a slope and two splitting paths. In order to reach Scar you have to continue following the north-northeast path. The path will bend north and you’ll be introduced to another new enemy type: the Rakk. These flying creatures will swoop down you in swarms dealing serious damage due to their sheer numbers. A shotgun is highly effect in covering their spread out formation when they attack. If you don’t have one available a rapid fire weapon will do well enough.
With them out of the way continue on. As the path slopes up two more paths will diverge. Take the path to your left to reach Scar, instead of the right which just leads up to a ledge. Although, if you’re a sniper it could be used for an excellent perch to get a few pot shots on Scar. Whatever method you decide to use Scar will begin charging you. Fire at the beast and stay on the move. If you’re a berserker do the opposite and charge right at him and use your fists. If you’re a siren put your best fire or caustic elemental weapon to use. He’ll have small gaggle of skag whelps and skag spitters fighting for him, but maintain your focus on Scar as he’ll reach you before any of them will.
Once you bring the beast down he’ll cough up T.K.’s leg. Kill the remaining skags that may be attacking you and start heading back towards the Arid Badlands to an appreciative T.K. and a lovely reward. Along with a lot of money and experience he will give you his prized shotgun T.K.’s Wave. The gun fires a blue energy wave that will devastate enemies. An excellent weapon for you soldiers and berserkers out there. Time for T.K.’s next errand, then it’s time to take on Bone Head.
Weapon: T.K.’s Wave
Last time you made the trip into the Wasteland you were given two new Bounty Board quests. One will bring you back to T.K. and he’ll provide some more quests for you. The other will introduce you to the vehicle generating Catch-a-Ride Station. You can choose either at your leisure, but I recommend setting up the Catch-a-Ride Station first so you can finally have access to vehicles.
Scooter, Pandora’s enthusiastic mechanic, crackles over the radio not long after you pick up the job. He maintains all of the Catch-a-Ride Stations on Pandora and the one in Fyrestone is on the fritz. But given he’s human and can’t be everywhere at once he’s going to need your help to fix it.
You’ll find the broken down station across from the Fyrestone Gate. After checking the station and running a diagnostic, Sooter was right. Now it turns out a nasty fellow named Bone Head (doesn’t entirely reflect his intelligence) has stolen the Digistruct. The only way you’ll get it back from him is, well, by doing what you always need to do in Pandora to get anything back: kill him.
You receive a small 108 experience award for this part of the mission. I would recommend moving on to some of T.K. Baha’s missions as taking on Bone head will be out of your league. Earn some more experience first then head back to take on Bone Head and his crew.
With grenades in hand it’s now time to kill that bandit bastard, Nine-Toes. T.K. informs you Nine-Toes is located in Skag Gully, which is east/northeast from T.K.’s shack. He also lets you know he has blocked off the entrance to the gully in order to keep skags out. No worries, as T.K. has taken the initiative to set-up explosives to destroy the barricade allowing you to get through easily.
Follow the trail east from T.K.’s shack. As you continue along the trail you’ll come across a skag nest. There’s only a few so taking care of them should be easy, especially with your grenades. Continue northeast on the trail as it climbs up a small slope. When you reach the top you’ll come across another skags nest. Once again it’s only a few, so defeating them should be relatively easy. You’ll see the barricaded entrance at the end of the trail. It seems like T.K. did all the work for you, as a plunger and wiring are all set-up, ready to be detonated. All you need to do is push the plunger and you will have access to Skag Gully.
Once you enter Skag Gully you’ll find a Medic and Ammo vendor on a raised, metal platform. Do some shopping if necessary before venturing further. I recommend stopping by the Medic vendor to buy a better shield. By this point there should be better versions available than your starting shield. Continue down the path towards your destination. You’ll come to an opening surrounded by skag nests. Skag Gully is appropriately named as a large number of skag pups and whelps will begin pouring out of their nests. Begin putting your abilities, best weapons and grenades to use on the vicious vermin. Once they’re all dead, continue southwest towards Nine-Toes hideout.
More skag nests are ahead, but the encounter is not nearly as intense as your last one. A few well placed shots should suffice in handling this small group of skags. Turn right on the path and you’ll come across what appears to be a grave submerged in a small pool of water. It’s actually T.K.’s small gun stash. Loot the grave for some very nice and very powerful weapons. Lady Finger should offer something special pistol users and snipers.
With new weapons in hand it’s now time to truly take down Nine-Toes.
Head up the trail to find the opening to Nine-Toes hideout. A few skags will be guarding the entrance. A few midget psychos will raise the gate and rush at the same time. Remain calm and take them all out. Head on inside and be ready for more bandits; tough ones at that. You’ll find many of them using shields to protect themselves. Two bandit thugs will be waiting for you not too far into the cave. Use cover and your new weapons to put the fools down.
Before heading deeper into the cave stop by the vendors near the entrance for some last minute ammo and health. Continue deeper in and you’ll notice a metal bridge leading across to a small structure and more walkways. Two bandit thugs and a midget shotgunner will come running out from the structure to attack you. You can make short work of them rather quickly with all of your abilities and weapons. Loot the inside of the structure and continue to the exit onto a short walk way. At the end there will be a drop in the floor, leading to a small arena area and nine-toed, three balled bandit himself.
The battle with Nine-Toes is incredibly tough, no matter how well prepared you are. He is joined by two vicious skags, known as Pinky and Digit. Do your best to remain focused on Nine-Toes as you run from his pet skags. Use your abilities to make quick work of Nine-Toes so you can refocus on the two skags. Also, the two skags can deal more damage and take more hits than Nine-Toes, so as they’re distracting you Nine-Toes can lay as much damage on you as he wants. Killing him first will give the opportunity to pick up his gun The Clipper. This machine pistol can shoot elemental fire rounds which are devastating against fleshy creatures like skags or bandits. Picking up The clipper will make finishing the pair of skags off much easier.
Once all three of the villains are defeated, loot the hell out of the room. There is plenty of money stashed away in the room and a weapons chest on the stage Nine-Toes came from. After this job well done it’s time to head back to T.K. and collect your ever so wonderful reward. Nicely done.
This mission is fairly simple. You need to meet with T.K. Baha, a local who lives out in the midst of the Arid Badlands. The man is a short run to the southwest as indicated on your H.U.D. compass.
Head out through the Fyrestone gate and take a right. Your last few trips along the road have been relatively safe, but this time as you head down the road from the gate a small group of bandits begin attacking you from the northwest heading up the road. Finish them off or they’ll continue to follow you to T.K. Baha’s place.
Head off the road on to the trail that led you to Nine-Toes bandit outpost. This time however, after killing the small group of Skag Pups, you’ll continue moving forward on the trail. You’ll find T.K. Baha’s and his house over ridge as you continue along the trail. T.K. will be sitting on the front porch as you approach. The nearly blind, one-legged man is…enthusiastic to say the least.
And he’ll have a reward and a new job for you after making his acquaintance.