The thing is, in a lot of cannon, there are mentions to certain weapon systems being superior in different ways... "the diffusion pattern of the blah blah laser is more condensed, making it more effective against armor," or "the blah blah large laser comes from the factory with a faulty heat shielding jacket and has known to make a bit more waste heat then other models."
Examples like that are all over the technical readouts, and the game could have a whole new level of customization and salvage added by just a couple tweeks to the stats.
You could have the baseline "Medium Laser" that you could buy with the standard stats (it could be like a gray item in other MMOs), then you could have your more exotic weapons where the standard stats have been tweaked a bit to give it an edge somewhere -- by making it less effecient in a different category.
A great example was how Star Wars Jump to Lightspeed handled space loot - different weapons had differe nt stats, in fact all weapons had different stats, so there were some exceptional examples of even the exact same component. It doesn't have to get that in detail, but a little variation would be a lot of fun.
I've been a BattleTech player in all forms, mostly the tabletop, for almost 20 years now - I'm feircely defensive about most changes in MWO that would divert it from cannon, but I believe that variations with weapons couldn't be translated well into a game where each turn represented 30 seconds; there wasn't any way to have a game feature to show the difference between the weapons manufacturered by different firms in the table top game. Here in a live-fire, real-time game like MechWarrior Online we've got a perfect system where we could really highlight the differences between weapons and manufacturers while adding a fun (being rewarded for playing keeps people playing, collecting stuff is always fun, so is customizing) and deep (figuring out the best weapon systems for you) layer to the game.
Edited by DocBach, 28 April 2012 - 06:39 AM.