Friday, March 11, 2016

Charting Ballistic Weapons

I usually post my "One Day In" articles around now, but these targets in Renegade are just about the same as last time.  

Read that last article at:

The biggest difference I've seen is that the Mega Hull has much longer range thermal, so you can't prep the power platforms with Cobra / Deluge subs anymore.  Also, it is possible that the Chain Range on the Mega Hull UAVs has increased - this time if I drive my Punisher back into the Aegis field like in that last picture of the article last month, they will chain onto my Rhinos & do big damage.  A key strategy for this whole raid is to keep ships as spread out as possible.

So instead of all that, I'm going to publish some DPS charts for Ballistic Weapons.  For this week's Battle Pirates Crib show, I showed the updated fleet damage chart with the new Particle Accelerator Cannon.  I also mentioned that I had run the Building Damage numbers and there was a surprising DPS champion.

First the usual Fleet DPS Chart - I have updated this chart so that it is comparing weapon performance on a Punisher at 75% (Legendary) rank, and with Nuclear Accelerators installed.  The bubble size is proportional to the DPS (per weapon) - since Build Time is no longer an interesting comparison (more on that later)

The second chart is the same, just zoomed in on most of the weapons of interest so you can see the differences.  Against fleets, the D-110 Railgun is most efficient (as long as they aren't moving) among the long range ballistics.  The Earthshaker can be more effective if you are willing to sacrifice some range.  Also the lower damage per shot can make it less effective against deflection hulls.  The new PAC comes up lower than the railgun weapons, but isn't as totally terrible as I thought it would be.

Moving on to building damage, which we all care about now because of the DUB and Mine targets, where the turrets can be hard to kill:

This chart shows a clear tradeoff between DPS/hton and range.  The Siege Cannon Z is the DPS/hTon champ against buildings, but loading up a fleet with Siege Cannon Z would result is a very light fleet.  We also care about DPS per weapon when building ballistic fleets, since many fleets can end up under maximum weight.  

So I made the next chart to compare DPS and DPS/hton...

So to read this chart, weapons toward the right do the most damage per gun and weapons toward the top do the most damage per ton. 

This chart can help you maximize your damage in a few ways... first of all, if you really don't care about range, filling a fleet with Siege Cannon X will maximize your ship's building damage output.   Arbalest is next best, but you often can't fill a ship with those without hitting weight limits.  If you end up with a bunch of empty weapon slots & max weight, you might want to think removing one heavy gun and filling your weapon slots with a high DPS/hton weapon like the Siege Cannon Z or even the Impact Cannon R (which also gives some defense bonus and has 49 base range).  The new PAC isn't a world-beater on these charts, but they don't account for the extra damage from the occasional Particle Blast.

Let's talk about build time... the additional ballistic weapon build time reductions in February basically levelled out these weapons so there weren't any left that seemed like their build time was out of whack.  In general, when you include the extra weight from Nuclear Accelerators, Ballistic Weapons are taking 130 seconds / ton to build.   Some are a bit quicker at 110 (Earthshaker & Reaver Chainguns) or 123 (D-110, Siege Cannons, & Assault Cannons, Impact R), and a few of the really small ones are quicker yet... but in general the build time is fairly proportional to the weight no matter what you choose.  

Sorry I don't have any great ideas for the raid - with some teamwork I think the Mega Hulls are really your best bet.  A player who needs help can really be helpful back by running a decoy (subs or instant repair) on the Mega weapon and so cut the damage that the helper takes.  I highly recommend it.  Good luck!