Flame of the Firehawk
Flame of the Firehawk
From the ashes she will rise.
Manufacturer: Maliwan
Model: Flame of the Firehawk
Element: Incendiary
Game: Borderlands 2
Special Part(s):
[Flame of the Firehawk Variants]

Flame of the Firehawk is a legendary nova shield in Borderlands 2 manufactured by Maliwan. Flame of the Firehawk is obtained from the mission Cult Following: The Enkindling located in Frostburn Canyon.

Special Weapon Effects

From the ashes she will rise. – Constant fire nova effect when the shield is depleted. This effect lasts indefinitely, as long as the shield remains at 0, and triggers roughly every second. Any shield recovery forces for a complete shield recharge before the effect can trigger again.

Usage & Description

The Flame of the Firehawk is a powerful nova shield which repeatedly releases novas for as long as the shield remains depleted. As with all nova shields, the Flame of the Firehawk is well-suited against melee attackers and tightly clustered crowds. Additionally, the condition for nova bursts being only that the shield remain depleted, it continues to burst while going into Fight For Your Life. This often means scoring an effortless Second Wind, even before the Fight For Your Life timer actually starts; but if a Second Wind is not achieved this way, some players may have difficulty tracking a weapon's aim on an enemy through the nova bursts.

Performance of a Flame of the Firehawk will suffer from investments in improved recharge delay (e.g.: Ward, Tactician class mods, badass tokens), as these will reduce the number of novas fired before the shield begins to recharge. Performance is improved by investments in recharge rate, shortening the time charging to full. Capacity bonuses will have a negative impact unless matched by recharge rate bonuses.

Skills which automatically recharge a portion of a shield's charge (e.g.: Inertia, Blood Soaked Shields), even with only one point invested, completely nullify the special characteristic of this shield. The novas only continue so long as the shield is depleted, and then cannot trigger again until the shield is fully recharged; with such skills, any kill made will partially recharge the shield and stop the novas. Such skills have merit on their own but effectively render the Flame of the Firehawk an above average nova shield at best.


  • On average (i.e., for most shield parts combinations), only the Black Hole and Hide of Terramorphous provide greater base nova damage; in practice, the Flame of the Firehawk will still deal more nova damage, because it can fire more than one nova burst. Only the Hide of Terramorphous has a wider blast radius.
  • The Flame of the Firehawk can spawn with a Maliwan capacitor, granting the "Inflammable" prefix and fire immunity to its wearer. It cannot spawn with resistance against any other element.
  • The reward icon for this item is purple for 'very rare', contrary to the orange rarity on the card when checked at any other time.
    • The center of this shield is purple like common for a purple-rarity shield, while the prism of other legendary shields is normally yellow.
  • When paired with the Grog Nozzle pistol, the Flame of the Firehawk's nova damage will heal the wearer if triggered.
  • A close range play-style as well as skills, class mods and relics that increase shield recharge delay or fire damage greatly improve the effectiveness of this shield. This tactic makes Krieg ideal as his skills not only increase fire damage and increase recharge delay drastically, but the nova blasts can active the skills  Burn, Baby, Burn and Fuel the Fire setting him on fire and refreshing the time it takes for his shields to recharge.
  • Moxxi weapons and Krieg's skill Elemental Empathy allow the novas to heal the wearer, ensuring longer staying power than normal.
  • When paired with Gaige's skill Sharing is Caring, this shield allows Deathtrap to become a walking explosion, dealing massive damage to all nearby enemies.


  • The Flame of the Firehawk is the only legendary item in the game given as a mission reward.
  • Although Flame of the Firehawk is a legendary, it is treated as a unique (not unlike the Norfleet) and can only be obtained as a mission reward.
  • The name of the shield and its special effect is reminiscent of Lilith's Phoenix skill from Borderlands.
  • In recognition of the popularity of equipping Krieg with the Flame of the Firehawk, the "Meat Unicycle" Action Package for VaultHunter.EXE causes Claptrap to continuously emit fire novas while active, mimicking the behavior of the legendary shield.
  • The flavor text refers to the mythological bird known as the phoenix, which was said to die in a burst of flames and to emerge from these flames reborn, effectively being immortal.