Weapon Appreciation Thread

General discussion about anything related to Transcendence.
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I just started playing transcendence again after a couple years hiatus. Well, it's been a while since we had a good weapons thread and a lot of good has come out of them in the past (e.g. denerfing the MAG launcher, improving the Kytryn launcher, the AK505, etc.), so let's have another one!

First off, I just love that the Ares launcher can fire both Warhammers and mini-nukes now. I'm not sure how long the mini-nuke functionality has been there, but it really makes the Ares launcher viable for use in almost any engagement since mini-nukes actually drop from a common enemy. The Ares launcher really shines now as an anti capship/swarm/base weapon. It would be great if other high-end ammunition weapons could use multiple ammunition types in a similar way. I'm thinking specifically of the TM7, thermo cannon, and dragonfly munitions; a launcher that could fire these would be pretty cool.

I still feel that there is a need for an energy (particle/weapon/positron) launcher for players that choose kinetic, blast or thermo as their primary weapon; this would be a great way for players to splash interesting effects like ionization, weapon disabling, shieldsdown, freezing, etc. without having to dedicate a weapon slot to a weapon like the cnidocyst cannon that cannot actually kill.

As always, my love goes out to the Flenser series, lancer cannon, Nandao bolt cannon, standard NAMI Launcher, and especially the Akan 600.

As always, the Penitent cannon needs some TLC. It's been an embarrassment for years.

The Heavy CLAW cannon still seems worse than the regular CLAW; it has about half the range and doesn't do appreciably more damage (and it's less likely to hit since it shoots 2 projectiles instead of 6).

The Fusionfire seems weaker. I'm not sure if this is actually the case but I seem to remember it being a lot more fun to use at one point; I've been mostly relying on missiles/MAGs for basebusting and have stopped mounting howitzers altogether aside from the MKIII.

The plasma torch seems weaker; I'm not sure when this happened but it no longer feels like a solid weapon that you could actually use in combat (as opposed to using it to mine). This is fine, since it's mostly a signature weapon for the Ferians and is unpleasant when employed in massed fire from dozens of ships. The higher-level plasma weapons still rock, of course.

The omni-particle is very anemic for a weapon that costs >10,000 credits. There is a major gap for turreted energy weapons between the Omni-turbo and Omni-TEV9 that simply has not been filled; if I want to use an omni in that range, it's the basically the Akan 600 or nothing. Getting a particle accelerator and a bushido enhancer for the omni-particle might do it, but that's 3 slots just to get +50% on a turret that simply isn't very good even when fully enhanced.

I still can't imagine any reason that I would ever want to mount any Moskva weapon or a Mark 1 Howitzer; leave 'em to the IAVs.

Anyone else have any thoughts?
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Atarlost
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The Bushido Thermocannons do perfectly well as ammo using non-launchers. Ammo is readily available from CW stations in the late game and their stocks refresh in the current version. TM7s are harder to keep stocked, but are very powerful weapons in post 1.0 versions. The real problem launcher is the Kytryn with only one munition type that is vanishingly rare.

If the Fusionfire has lost any ground it's to improvements to armor. It's still the best high WMD weapon in the game apart from the ammo using micronuke.

I agree the Omni-Particle is terrible. The problem, though, isn't with the omni-particle, it's with the clustering of particle resistant major enemies. The Sung, Dwarg, Ares, and Kobol all resist particle weapons significantly. If the Sung resisted blast instead of particle weapon balance in the new beyond would be substantially improved IMO.
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Atarlost wrote:
I agree the Omni-Particle is terrible. The problem, though, isn't with the omni-particle, it's with the clustering of particle resistant major enemies. The Sung, Dwarg, Ares, and Kobol all resist particle weapons significantly. If the Sung resisted blast instead of particle weapon balance in the new beyond would be substantially improved IMO.
I would counter that an equally big problem is that there are no enemies that are particularly vulnerable to particle damage. It's not just a clustering issue; the omni-particle is even weak pre-St. Kat's, whereas I think there needs to be an omnidirectional energy weapon that has a window of utility somewhere between Rigel and Sanctuary. Something like a slower-firing omni lancer, maybe.

I wouldn't mess with the Kobol since they show up at a point in the game where you should really be transitioning to ion weapons anyway, and it's canonical that the Ares resist particle damage as a counter to the Commonwealth's TeV9. As for the Sung and Dwarg, well, the Dwarg HAVE to be particle resistant since they are mortal enemies of the Sung, and I resist making the Sung blast-vulnerable since getting blown up by blast weapons is practically their trademark. (As an aside, I believe that the Dragon slaver is actually vulnerable to particle and resistant to blast.)

Instead, I would propose making the Marauders more particle-vulnerable by making reactive armor and blast plate less particle resistant and swapping the MK II deflector on the Viking II for a hull plate ionizer. This would also address the biggest complaint about Viking II, which is that they are a huge pain to kill because they always run away when they take damage only to come back with full shields.

Making a few other nuisances like the Penitents particle-vulnerable would go a long way to restoring my faith in particle weapons other than the Lancer and Nandao.
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The omni particle cannon is not that bad. Sure, it is weak, but it has some advantages over an omni turbolaser.
1) Pre St.K's, Solon shields do not block omni particle cannon use.
2) Omni particle has more range. This makes precision sniping at Sung turrets at slave camps easier. Your range is equal to theirs, so you can back off when they return fire. With omni turbo, better hope your armor/shields resist particle.
3) Heliotrope destroyers (also an early midgame enemy) are practically immune to lasers.

With that said, if I can get a laser collimator and an omni turbolaser (and a shield better than the Solon), I skip the omni particle cannon. If I get an omni particle cannon, but neither a collimator nor an omni turbolaser, I use the omni particle cannon.

What would help particle weapons is if the particle accelerator increased damage by 50% instead of a measly 25%.
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PM wrote:The omni particle cannon is not that bad. Sure, it is weak, but it has some advantages over an omni turbolaser.
1) Pre St.K's, Solon shields do not block omni particle cannon use.
2) Omni particle has more range. This makes precision sniping at Sung turrets at slave camps easier. Your range is equal to theirs, so you can back off when they return fire. With omni turbo, better hope your armor/shields resist particle.
3) Heliotrope destroyers (also an early midgame enemy) are practically immune to lasers.

With that said, if I can get a laser collimator and an omni turbolaser (and a shield better than the Solon), I skip the omni particle cannon. If I get an omni particle cannon, but neither a collimator nor an omni turbolaser, I use the omni particle cannon.

What would help particle weapons is if the particle accelerator increased damage by 50% instead of a measly 25%.
Two out of three complaints are answered by the RK15 Partisan and for my part I don't think equal range is good enough. Dodging in and out isn't worth it against steady firing low damage per shot opponents like Sung turrets. The Akan 600 gets credit for superior sniping. The omni particle beam doesn't.

The Marauders aren't a major enough opponent to justify using particle weapons. They don't extend far enough into the New Beyond. Any sovereign based fix needs to last until the switch to level 8 weapons because the omni TEV 9 is a particle weapon as well.

Keep in mind that the omi particle beam does 1d8+1 damage. The Omni Turbolaser does 3d4 damage. The RK15 does 2d8+1 damage. They all have the same fire rate.

The Steel Slaver is the first particle resistant ship to use armor where the omni particle outperforms the RK15, and even there the RK15 dramatically outperforms the omni particle against the shields. At least one of the Turbolaser and Rk15 outperform the Particle Beam against every non-Iocrym shield in the game. Now, show of hands, how many people here fear Steel Slavers more than Wind Slavers? Wind slavers go down faster to the turbolaser, much less the Partisan.

And don't even get me started on Dwarg Catopric Armor.
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I dislike RK15 because the shots are too slow and Vikings resist kinetic too much. However, I will use it if I loot it or cannot find any other omni weapon stronger than the omni laser. Akan 600 requires ammo which has its own set of problems.

As for midgame, I had occasional games where I had system after system full of outlaw miners and more minor sovereigns until almost Jiang's Star, and the Sung and Dwarg in those games were rare except for the lowly gunships that die to almost anything.

Dwarg Catopric Armor is nasty. If there is a reason against particle weapons, this would be it.

My preference of non-military omni weapons is this: omni turbolaser > omni particle cannon > RK15
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Vanilla Transcendence, it's Omni Mk3 (and later, Mk5/Fusionfire) Howitzers all the way. Today I booted up an old save on my laptop, from when I knew a lot less about the game... and I was 4/5ths through the game without a Howitzer. Terrible.

The Ferian Plasma Cannon works wonders against the big Ares ships. Never leave home without it.

When playing with WE4 and TheLastBrunnenG's 400+ new weapons mod, I like to use the Ferian Plasma Blaster above all else. Nicely up close and personal. I also try to get my hand on an Omni Dual Mk3 Howitzer.

Love this game. Just can't bring myself to start using Akan/NAMI/MAG launchers. Lugging along all that ammo seems... tiresome.
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Willy, there are no Omni howitzers in Vanilla, so I'm not sure what you're referring too.

Atarlost, I find Steel slavers to be much more obnoxious than wind slavers; by the time they appear it would be suicidal to still be using an omni particle cannon.

Marauders may not have a sovereign presence in most games, but they are the primary antagonist in the pre-Sanctuary Commonwealth militia missions; players will have to deal with dozens if not hundreds of Viking IIs (and to a lesser extent Corsair IIs) over the course of these missions. I favor a lancer or dual particle cannon for the superfreighter rescue missions and this would be good place for the omni particle cannon to shine, but it's just too darn weak.

The big issue that I think Atarlost touched on is that there is no point in the game where the omni particle cannon is a better choice than the significantly less expensive omni turbolaser or RK15- possibly even without enhancers. For freighter players, who are most reliant on omnis and have limited weapon selection, there's no reason not to have a collimator or accelerator installed; the fact that the omni particle cannon saves a slot is not a huge advantage at that point in the game. Freighter captains also can't even rely on having the wimpy particle accelerator available because finding one tends to be an expensive proposition, whereas the other two enhancers are cheap and ubiquitous.

I personally cannot stand using the RK15 due to the slow projectile speed and fragile projectiles, but I respect that many people find it to be a great weapon and my dislike of it really boils down to my playstyle. I cannot conceive of a playstyle for which an omni particle cannon would be a better choice than the omni turbolaser.

I don't mind that there are different points at the game where different loadouts are at an advantage; there shouldn't be a clear hierarchy or natural progression from weapon to weapon. However, the omni selection at midgame is sparser than any other weapon niche at any other point in the game; moreover, there aren't really any other midgame-caliber weapons that don't require precise aiming except for the Dragonfly, the Urak howitzer, and the xiphon cannon (oh please). At least in the early game we have tracking/spread weapons like the Smartcannon, Morningstar, and laser array.

Also, I think that it's telling that not one person has thought to mention the only other early-game turret, the truly pathetic Moskva 11.
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Wind Slavers are more dangerous than Steel Slavers because Wind Slavers appear in swarms and are faster than the playership. The player who is caught by Wind Slavers must kill them all quickly or die. Steel Slavers are very slow and can be fled from if necessary. Steel slavers also rarely appear more than a pair at a time, although they can appear with Wind Slavers.
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Moskva 11 isn't terrible, it just requires an unusual playstyle. Its problem is that its range is shorter than the approach distance for the AI. You can make that up by using high speed close passes in a fast ship like the Wolfen, which can also afford some weapon diversity. This plays well if you have better shields than armor. I'd actually like to see more short range omnis at higher levels.

It's a level 3 weapon though. The level 5 omni particle is worse than the level 4 omnis, but it's not so pathetic as to be worse than a level 3 omni. Except against Dwarg. The Moskva 11 outperforms it against Dwarg Catopric and Dwarg Holochroal by so much it isn't even funny.
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The omni-turbolaser is easily one of the best weapons in the game. You can get it early, and it lasts a long time....especially once you can enhance the HELL out of it. I've used it successfully against the luminous in the endgame before...it's not ideal, but it works (and luminous can't adapt to block lasers). The omni-particle just sucks.


The kytryn launcher used to be a fun "sometimes" weapon. You wouldn't often see them, but it happened every few games that you'd be able to make enough ammo for it. Nowadays...I think I've seen ONE game where I could have used it, and it just isn't worth it.

Although I have to say....my favourite weapon is probably the dual flenser. It's just an insane killing machine, and means you don't need a howitzer for a few more systems.


One "weapon" I really do NOT like is the longreach and ICX devices.....they're very much hit and miss, emphasis on the miss. Especially when you're turning while the gun fires. And as for Aegis autons....well....here's two little stories about these point-defense robots:

1. I decided to spawn a crudload of ranx gunships, and a lot of aegis autons...in the title screen, of course. The ranx were wiped out in seconds by the thousands of longreach shots missing their target projectiles and blasting the gunships instead. As Atarlost said in IRC about this, it's a sad day when your point defense is a better offensive weapon than your main gun...because as anyone who's tried using them offensively via ordering them around...they're really not that good.

2. Earlier on, I was using the Aegis (three of them, actually), to try and protect me while I lined up on a base..charon, I think it was. A drake came and attacked me, and I just ignored it, because I had point-defense. This ended up as a really bad idea, because of the crappy range of point-defense. They were only firing at the last second. And because they were aiming ahead, they ended up trying to intercept the incoming missiles just after they hit me. Over and over again, I'd be hit by a KM100, then three longreach slugs. In the end I told them to attack the stronghold by themselves just to kill them off.

That said, they're the lowest-risk way to kill pteravore nests.
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Re: Missile defense.
For one of my mods, I planned to use two Aegis autons as missile defense for a boss ship (renegade freighter). Playtesting the encounter with missile weapons showed me that the autons' Longreach blew up their flagship in their vain attempt to stop my attacks. Thus, the idea was scrapped.

Missile defense is good for stopping incoming junk only from a few sources, mostly at the endgame.
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PM wrote:Re: Missile defense.
For one of my mods, I planned to use two Aegis autons as missile defense for a boss ship (renegade freighter). Playtesting the encounter with missile weapons showed me that the autons' Longreach blew up their flagship in their vain attempt to stop my attacks. Thus, the idea was scrapped.

Missile defense is good for stopping incoming junk only from a few sources, mostly at the endgame.
I actually think that missile defense works great on large AI ships like the superfreighter that present large targets and can't rely on maneuvering or outrunning enemies.
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Watch TV, Do Nothing wrote:
PM wrote:Re: Missile defense.
For one of my mods, I planned to use two Aegis autons as missile defense for a boss ship (renegade freighter). Playtesting the encounter with missile weapons showed me that the autons' Longreach blew up their flagship in their vain attempt to stop my attacks. Thus, the idea was scrapped.

Missile defense is good for stopping incoming junk only from a few sources, mostly at the endgame.
I actually think that missile defense works great on large AI ships like the superfreighter that present large targets and can't rely on maneuvering or outrunning enemies.
In shot, they're fine for combat as long as you stay perfectly still/travel only in straight lines, only use them on the ship that's being targeted, avoid combat in asteroid fields, and get really lucky.

That said though, I'm working to add them to some stations in my mods. Because they should be able to use point defense fairly well.
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Personaly i think this was a great threat idea, not enough about the actual items being talked about in my opinion and talking about weapons.......well, I am horrible Pilot......
I like the TruboLaser but it gets slow fast as the hostiles get meaner, like WindSlavers, If I did not get a better shield before they hit me, that TurboLaser is barely going to get me to a safe spot. An OmniTurboLaser is good, but it is still a TurboLaser, does not hit fast enough for the harder criminals in space:) but great for getting out of a tight spot with small prey because i can sit on a planet or a rock and fire off the edges easy enough.

Tev9.....love it, but i think it is over-rated......on the defense turrets it might as well be a level 1 Laser, MY defense turrets I like to add missile launchers to help the Lasers :).

and the Im90.......but I did not get that for months when i first started so i basically play the Tev9 as soon as I get it.
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