beams and cannons as different classes
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Join Date: Dec 2012
08-28-2013, 07:07 AM
take pvp out of the thought process for a moment, and realize that escorts have edged other ships out of pve play too. the same way engineers have been edged out.
The simple truth is that escorts are no longer the glass cannons, are they battle cruisers, or carriers, not quite, but the differences are marginal in the end, especially with the defense bonus stacked on. They can stack the same level of hull resistance.
But that's a escorts vs all other ship classes argument, not a cannons vs beams one.
Same way that engineers not having a res debuff, or damage buff makes them do les damage then the other captains, its a separate issue.
So cannons V.s beams comes down to trying to put them in as much of a vacuum as possible first.
By design beams are supposed to trade a wide firing arc, originally higher then the current 250 degrees, 280 originally I want to say, with similar energy drain to dual cannons. And they do, which means their easier to keep on target, thus easier to sustain damage with.
Turrets are the easiest to keep on target, and DHC's the hardest.
The original power drain mechanics also helped balance this out, each weapon as it fired its cycle, drained x power, eps skills would cause power to recharge, and with beams on a 4 sec firing cycle, they would drain 10 to fire for 4 secs, opposed to cannons and DHC's on a 3 sec cycle, draining 10 and 12 respectively.
So what did this mean, well beams cycled slower, which meant more time to recover energy lost, before the next cycle started, and cannons faster, which meant less time to recover.
Then they changed it to a flat system, the weapons tie up X amount of power for their firing cycle, then release it back to the pool. so no more staggering weapons fire to change how your drains affecting you.
I would argue that we should also look at the Boff skills specifically for each weapon group too.
Rapid fire, which spikes cannon dps on a single target for minimal extra weapon power draw.
Spread fire, which cuase the weapons to fire in a cone, inside their arc, and X number of targets, for minimal energy draw.
Beam overload, which does massive damage to a single target, but comes with a heft energy drain, a battery can put that back its not held power.
and Fire at will, which causes the beams to strike x number of targets in their arcs, randomly picking targets, and comes with a heft power drain.
Now in a vacuum the only skills that are truly out of sync are FaW and SF, cannon spread fire is vastly superior to fire at will in almost all cases, with a few notable exceptions which have more to do with beams wider firing arcs. Fixable mostly by making FaW drain less energy.
But we don't play in a vacuum, and these weapons have to be mounted on something, and they have player skills backing them, gear sets, and doffs, and boff powers outside of just attacks.
With doffs and gear sets like the borg set, its possible to all but negate weapon power drain, marginalizing it as a problem no matter what ship your in or what weapons you use. So for the most part throw weapon power drain out the window as a balancing source in the current set up.
So firing arc, well this would be a problem except escorts have no problem keeping anything in arc, no matter what they use, same can be said for scimitars using cloaked fire or that have their ambush buff up for dropping cloak. But that's a problem with turn rates, not the weapons them selves or their arcs.
So really the problem comes back to power drain, and the ability to all but negate it, which used to be a engineer selling point with nadion inversion. Fixing the disparity between escorts and cruisers/larger ships wont fix the power drain problems with the weapons, changing the arcs, wont fix the power problems.
As for how to fix them, well one way would be to get rid of all the doffs, and set bonus's that negate them, but that's not gunna happen, we all know that. So if they wont do that then we can alter the energy drain of the weapons them selves, lower beams and turrets drains, this looks like it would help, but effectively with boffs, and or set up, every weapon basically drains 2 power anyways. so while it looks good on paper, as soon as you add in the drain mitigation mechanics it stops fixing the disparity.
My suggestion, alter how much energy drain can be negated, either across all weapons, or by type, set cannons so that their power drain can only be mitigated by say, half, beams and turrets to 1/3rd, or down to the current 2. that would leave cannons and DHC's at 5/6 respectively, which while greatly reducing their power draw should still have it impact their dps like it was originally supposed too, but their faster fire cycle still means they end up making more use of the draw reduction buff every time its up.
it wouldn't change them on ships without those doffs and sets, but it would on the side that seems to be the problem.
Last edited by verline1; 08-28-2013 at