Saturday, September 13, 2014

Base Turret Roundup

One more change to the game from this week's update is that many of the Base Turret statistics have changed.  I'll try to classify each turret and compare them to see where they fall.

First I've divided the turrets into a few different categories:

  • Front Line: These generally do high damage, but are outranged by most weapons on Base Fleets,  Their main purpose is to force attacking fleets to stop. 
  • Center Island Aimed: These long range turrets are made to do damage to incoming fleets whether they are moving or stopped.  They also generally have a minimum range, so placing them on the front lines leaves them vulnerable to blitzing.
  • Center Island Splash: These long range turrets do splash damage, but usually require the attacking fleet to be stopped in order to land on target.  Like Aimed turrets, these also have a minimum range, but also can be more effective near minimum range because they will have a lower flight time.
  • Medium Range: These are the "tweeners" that can outrange base fleets, but don't have a very long range like the center island turrets.  They are often found on front lines, but could be placed further back in certain base designs.
  • Defensive: These turrets protect the base by shooting down incoming projectiles.
Front Line Turrets:
Because front line turrets are generally used to stop fleets, I will compare these turrets assuming an armor special is added using +25% power, and then fitting the maximum armor possible with the power remaining.
GargoyleCerberus 4Howitzer 4DisrupterCoaxial
Submerged Dam7,7760000
Damage TypeConcussiveExplosiveBallisticBallisticBallistic
Cycle Time6.54.50.7530.2
Ship DPS717.8426.7394.2659.2870.0
Power Consumed249268476513852204
Power remaining for Armor (with +25% special)468227621951575756
Max Health1560032600326003260022600
OtherSplashSplashNone80% Slow EffectDual - defensive

Except for the Howitzer, each of these turrets is usable in a top level base - they all have their strengths.  Since the increase to Splash & Spread in the Gargoyle, its only weakness compared to the Cerberus is the slower reload and the higher power usage.  At this point, it could be justified to swap all Cerbs for Gargoyles, unless power becomes a concern.  Although I did an "apples-to-apples" comparison above with a defensive special, it would be better to use the Gargoyle with no special, and instead use DU2 armor on it to give 27,600 total health.  The other "high power" turret is the Coaxial, and in that case its dual nature means that most people will be using it with Priority or Countermeasure Targeting.  But that turret also will make a less effective "stopper" because it will only be able to fit DU1 armor with a special added.  It would be able to have DU3 armor with no special mounted, but I don't think that's the best use for the Coaxial.  DPS for the Coaxial is still high after the nerf, so I wouldn't suggest ditching them for that reason.

Center Island Aimed
I compared the options here with the best special generally used.  Sentinels generally need Scramjet if used in the center island.  Also keep in mind that putting armor on these turrets probably isn't the best use of power resources.

Sentinel 4 with Scramjet 3Sentinel 5 with Scramjet 3Harpoon with DUShells 3Javelin with DUShells 3
Range20 - 125.530 - 13560 - 14980 - 149
Submerged Dam0000
Damage TypePenetrativePenetrative/BallisticBallisticBallistic/Penetrative
Cycle Time5.15.310.012
Ship DPS167.5215.8216.0229.5
Power Consumed8141,2092,9573,693
Power remaining for armor2,3091,9935135
Max Health32600326001560010600
OtherNone40% Flak Evade30% Slow EffectNone

The biggest point of interest is that the DPS of the Harpoon and Javelin seem very close since the Harpoon damage increase.  This calculation uses a max accuracy of 100%, but with the +40% from DU Shells, the effective accuracy of the Harpoons is 112% vs Javelins at 140%.  This makes a difference against targets with high Evade, so the relative DPS would be 241.9 for Harpoon vs. 321.3 for Javelin, which means the Javelin still has a significant edge against attackers with good evade.  The Sentinel 5 doesn't look too bad in comparison either, but its accuracy is 100% (exactly), so its effective DPS will also fall behind the Harpoon and Javelin against evading attackers.

Center Island Splash
With these weapons, I used the best researched special.  Fire Support M is generally preferable to Scramjet 3 for the missile-type weapons here, and Fire Support X is also usually preferred to Slide Loader, but I wanted to stick with the researched specials for comparison, especially because players who are considering Arc Missiles or Victory Mortars generally won't have the Drac Base specials.  I also allowed estimated accuracy = Splash / (3/8*spread) to go above 100% in this case, since the missile-type weapons in question use multiple shells.   Of course DPS will be lower against a moving target.

Arc 3 with Scramjet 3Halo with Scramjet 3Brimstone with Scramjet 3Victory Mortar 4 with Slide Load 3Meteor Mortar with Slide Load 3
Range40 - 162.540 - 162.540 - 168.7555-12265-125
Submerged Dam0000300 DPS
Damage TypePenetrative/ExpPenetrative/ExpPenetrative/RadioExplosiveExpl/Radio
Cycle Time12.
Ship DPS86.0106.4128.0128.458.6
Power Consumed1,4261,8512,5141,1481,691
Power remaining for armor1,8191,4799492,1261,674
Max Health3260032600226003260032600
OtherNoneNoneTrigger ExplosionNone300 DPS pool, 85% Anti Evade

No big changes or surprises here.  The DPS of the Meteor Mortar looks low, but it will do much more damage if you can force your attacker to sit in the fire pool.  On the offensive side, the DPS of a Front Line turret is generally higher than 300 DPS, so it is still preferable to sit in the pool than it would be to drive into a turret (depending on resistances).

Although I showed Power remaining for armor and Max Health in the chart, Center Island Turrets are not the best place to put your armor.  

Medium Range
For the medium range turrets, I used the Scramjet special on the Napalm and the Vulture, since without it they would be outranged by many base attack fleets.  On the Sentinels I used Thermobaric Casing since they already outrange base attack fleets.  Any of these weapons could also be fielded with Fire Support M, except perhaps the Vulture which would be outranged by Launchers and UAVs.

Sentinel 4 with Thermobaric 3Sentinel 5 with Thermobaric 3Vulture with Scramjet 3Napalm with Scramjet 3
Range20 - 10230 - 10893.7524 - 105
Submerged Dam000300 DPS
Damage TypePenetrativePenetrative/BallisticPenetrative/ExpPenetrative/Radio
Cycle Time5.15.34.512
Ship DPS222.7280.6915.5191.6 (DPS/2)
Power Consumed7621,1311,9581,649
Power remaining for armor2,5112,1951,3941,641
Max Health32600326003260032600
OtherNone40% Flak Evade50% crit chance against sub-50% health300 DPS Pool

I divided the computed DPS by 2 for the Napalm because it drops its shells in a line, and it is not possible for a ship to be hit by the full attack.  However, the 300 DPS from the firepool is possibly more significant than the initial attack, if the layout is right or if the attacker stops.

The Vulture now does a huge amount of damage, and is once more a turret worthy of consideration. 

All of these turrets could be fielded with DU3 armor.  Heavily armoring these turrets is likely a good idea.  Although a smart driver realizes he won't need to stop for these turrets, the extra survival time with the armor could allow for an extra shot fired, which in the case of the Vulture or the Napalm, could make a big difference.

I used the best defensive special to compare these (note that for Coaxial, that is different than the one I used for the Short Range Turret comparison).  Estimating accuracy for flak is difficult, since it has spread/splash, and the number of incoming missiles/UAVs it takes out is dependent on how tightly packed they are.  I estimated 2 targets per shot (200%).

Flak 4 with Barrage Rack 3Bombard 4 with Enhanced Prop 3Coaxial with CM Targeting
Range12 - 765685.1
Cycle Time2.63.50.2
Accuracy200% (guess)75%84%
Power Consumed3854132,733
Power remaining for armor2,4022,055780
Max Health326003260022600
OtherSplash shot / Missile&UAV onlyMortar&UAV OnlyDual - offensive
Not a huge difference here between the turrets, especially since the flak number is such an uncertain estimate.  You can see Coaxial turrets will use a lot more power than the other defensive turrets.

I hope this article helps you compare the different turret options available to use in the different roles.  My next couple articles will be focused on the next raid (Frostbite) & analysis of the new prizes.