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Hydra (Borderlands)

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The Hydra is a legendary shotgun manufactured by Atlas.

Examples are on the talk page.

Special Weapon Effects

Five heads of Death – Spread pattern is five distinct horizontal groupings.

Usage & Description

The Hydra's unique accessory causes it to deal more damage than other shotguns of similar part composition, and the fixed spread pattern of the pellets makes it easier to predict where shots will go. Due to the very wide horizontal spread of the pellets, the Hydra is best used against groups of enemies or at very close range so that most of the pellets will hit. The Hydra will make quick work of Rakk and other large groups of weak enemies, but for individual enemies it is generally better to use a more accurate weapon for critical hits.


While the Hydra has a high accuracy rating, as a pattern shotgun (like the Friendly Fire, Crux, and Hammer) this rating has little effect. Generally, you should ignore the accuracy rating when choosing a Hydra.

Carnage Hydras (see below), however, are not pattern shotguns, and do benefit from its accuracy.

Carnage Variation

When a Hydra spawns with the Carnage barrel, it fires small rockets instead of the usual Hydra shot pattern. Carnage Hydras are exceptional Carnages, as the Hydra accessory grants both a substantial damage bonus (nearly three times that of Terrible) and an accuracy bonus that helps offset the inherent inaccuracy of Carnages. If the weapon spawns in material 1 or 2, it will receive the Hunter's prefix (not possible on standard Carnages), gaining a further +20% damage bonus without the usual diminution of projectile count, which of course is 1 on a Carnage. Carnage Hydras in material 3 will receive the Pearl prefix instead.

Projectile Count

The Hydra has a base +3 projectile count, putting the count up

Hydra's fixed spread pattern.

to a maximum of 12. If the Hydra has a high accuracy rating (with no effect on the pattern), it will become a Hunter's Hydra, lose 2 projectiles, but gain an extra +20% damage.


  • Unlike most other shotguns, it is generally not possible for all projectiles to hit a single target, unless the weapon is fired at point-blank range


  • The name is a reference to the Lernaean Hydra. The red text refers to the fact that the Lernaean Hydra had five serpentine heads, as well as poisonous blood and breath; created to bring death to any mortals in its wake.
  • This weapon reappears in the Borderlands 2 DLC Sir Hammerlock's Big Game Hunt. However, since the Atlas Corporation is no longer present in Borderlands 2, the newer Hydra is instead manufactured by Jakobs. 


The Hydra effect comes from the acc4_Atlas_Hydra accessory. The "-100%" spread means it makes the weapon approximately twice as accurate, depending on other parts of the gun (this will not give the gun 100% accuracy). For an explanation on how to interpret the information on the following table, please see the stat modifiers page.

Accuracy Minimum: -50%
Spread: -100%
Damage: +35%
Projectile Count: +3

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