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What's Up With Lasers?


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#1 RacerX

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 09:36 AM

Why does it seem that lasers are total garbage weapons now. AC seem to cut through armor like a hot knife through butter. LRMs are taking out mechs in droves. An yet when I shoot a horribly damaged mech with two Large Lasers and two Medium lasers in a red, unarmored torso section nothing happens. This isn't just one game and my aim is pretty good when the mech is shut down in 10 meters in front of me. I'm seeing this consistently in my matches. If I shoot something with twin AC/5s I'm coring folks. If I hit them with multiple lasers its like I'm shooting blanks. Is anyone else experiencing these types of issues?

#2 NovaWasp

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 09:51 AM

Pinpoint damage vs over time damage. When you hit with your AC5s, you do 10 to the same spot. You probably spread across the mech. I've hit a bump in terrain in my Cicada and hit a leg and all 3 torsos. I like to have 2 AC10s or an AC20 with some lasers.

#3 Kojin

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 09:56 AM

Y'know, I've been wondering about this. I thought it was because I was out of practice after being on/off playing for the last month or so (and I am doing less damage and playing worse atm), but I feel like I'm lacking damage beyond that with regard to my largely laser equipped mechs vs my ac/srm/lrm ones.

As NovaWasp said, there's some spread with lasers, but I still feel like I'm losing damage more than I should be. I don't know...

#4 Kazma

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 09:58 AM

2 Reasons: Bad Hit Detection and Beam duration.

#5 Oni Ralas

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 10:39 AM

Because we've come full circle. By eliminating LRM spam and cutting down on laser mechanics (ghost heat + DoT) there is nothing left but dakka.

Perfect example. Got in a sparing match with someone (that I know) in a friendly 1v1 while everyone was off playing cap war. Same tonnage, he was in a dual AC20 boat, me w/ 2x AC10 and 4mlas. On paper, same damage, and overall same basic RoF when you factor in beam length.

Both unload CT and just shoot each other pretty much point blank. The result? My ct goes red after 2 shots. After my *death* his is still peppered yellow. Convergence is still off w/ las, and the instant vs. DoT style of dakka/las makes all the difference in the world.


Lasers are not horrible, but there is a *reason* you see so much dakka right now. Like I've said a million times, if you notice something being played disproportionately more than usual, it's likely broken.

#6 Roadbeer

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 10:59 AM

View PostOni Ralas, on 09 November 2013 - 10:39 AM, said:

Lasers are not horrible, but there is a *reason* you see so much dakka right now. Like I've said a million times, if you notice something being played disproportionately more than usual, it's likely broken.


Not entirely wrong, but I disagree with the last sentence.

It's not that AC is broken, it's that the beam/missile equivalent aren't on par with it (nor should they be, read on). It's like when poptarting was the FOTM, it wasn't because PPC/Gauss were fawsome, it's because their natural counter was nerfed into the ground. But that doesn't even explain what's going on here.

The problem is that people look at the weapons systems as Rock, Paper, Scissors.. that's wrongheaded thinking. Each type of weapon has it's place, and this is how it breaks down.

Ballistics = Direct Damage
Energy = Damage Over Time
Missiles = Area of Effect.

In a toe to toe fight, like you described, straight direct damage will always win. This doesn't have as much to do with pinpoint damage as it has to do with the mechanics of the system. DD is designed to put out massive damage, but it has the limitation of low ammo/ton. DoT is "Death by 1,000 cuts", it won't last in a direct fight, but after the DD ammo is gone, the DoT of energy weapons keep on going.

Missiles, in the same situation would, on the paper doll, have appeared to be even less effective because where your CT would be cored out, technically you did vastly more damage, but it's spread over a wide area of your opponent, so it "looks" like you did nothing.

This is the problem with statistics like DPS, because they look at it as If X weapon was fired at one specific area, and scored a direct hit, it will do Y amount of damage and all of this is done in a vacuum.

#7 CrashieJ

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 11:00 AM

I still think ACs should be multishot weapons what work like lasers, even if you think it "sucks" it's fair. Why? because MWO doesn't give a sh|t about ammunition and logistics for ballistics to have it's proper downside

AC20s would have 4 AC5-ish rounds in rapidfire (still counts as 1 round due to 80's Unicorn Scifi technology)
AC10s would fire 5 AC2-ish rounds in a rapidfire (still counts as 1 round due to 80's Unicorn Scifi technology)
AC5 can shoot 1 AC5 round
AC2 can shoot 1 AC2 round

this also opens up other patch PGI can take like
ULTRA ACs?
ROTARY ACs?

that are both cool, fun, AND balanced.

#8 Davers

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 11:14 AM

View PostRoadbeer, on 09 November 2013 - 10:59 AM, said:


Not entirely wrong, but I disagree with the last sentence.

It's not that AC is broken, it's that the beam/missile equivalent aren't on par with it (nor should they be, read on). It's like when poptarting was the FOTM, it wasn't because PPC/Gauss were fawsome, it's because their natural counter was nerfed into the ground. But that doesn't even explain what's going on here.

The problem is that people look at the weapons systems as Rock, Paper, Scissors.. that's wrongheaded thinking. Each type of weapon has it's place, and this is how it breaks down.

Ballistics = Direct Damage
Energy = Damage Over Time
Missiles = Area of Effect.

In a toe to toe fight, like you described, straight direct damage will always win. This doesn't have as much to do with pinpoint damage as it has to do with the mechanics of the system. DD is designed to put out massive damage, but it has the limitation of low ammo/ton. DoT is "Death by 1,000 cuts", it won't last in a direct fight, but after the DD ammo is gone, the DoT of energy weapons keep on going.

Missiles, in the same situation would, on the paper doll, have appeared to be even less effective because where your CT would be cored out, technically you did vastly more damage, but it's spread over a wide area of your opponent, so it "looks" like you did nothing.

This is the problem with statistics like DPS, because they look at it as If X weapon was fired at one specific area, and scored a direct hit, it will do Y amount of damage and all of this is done in a vacuum.


1. If we aren't supposed to view weapons as "rock, paper, scissors", then there is no "natural counter" to pop tart snipers.

2. We have the ability to carry all the ammo we could need, so DoT weapons like lasers never get their chance to shine. I run out of ammo in my Illya in less than 1% of my matches with it. And while I can fire my 3 UACs all day long, the two medium lasers I carry can still run too hot .

#9 mirrimon

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 11:18 AM

View PostOni Ralas, on 09 November 2013 - 10:39 AM, said:

Because we've come full circle. By eliminating LRM spam and cutting down on laser mechanics (ghost heat + DoT) there is nothing left but dakka.

Perfect example. Got in a sparing match with someone (that I know) in a friendly 1v1 while everyone was off playing cap war. Same tonnage, he was in a dual AC20 boat, me w/ 2x AC10 and 4mlas. On paper, same damage, and overall same basic RoF when you factor in beam length.

Both unload CT and just shoot each other pretty much point blank. The result? My ct goes red after 2 shots. After my *death* his is still peppered yellow. Convergence is still off w/ las, and the instant vs. DoT style of dakka/las makes all the difference in the world.


Lasers are not horrible, but there is a *reason* you see so much dakka right now. Like I've said a million times, if you notice something being played disproportionately more than usual, it's likely broken.


Assuming you both had ~60 ct armor (jagermechs?) 102 damage to kill ct
2ac20 kills in 12 seconds 3 shots 120 damage. At 8 seconds he breached your ct armor leaving 22 internal.

2ac10 kills in 12.5 seconds. Against 2ac20 it does 80 damage at the 10 second mark. You should have given him an open red ct as well with 22 internal remaining

4 mlaser does 60 damage in the 12 seconds the ac20s killed you in. if even only half went to ct you should have won.

I think more than just your laser damage was messed up in this situation.

#10 RandomLurker

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 11:25 AM

While I normally defend lasers vehemently (LLas are my favorite weapon) I have noticed a distinct failure on the HSR front recently. I actually have to aim ahead of a target to hit them most of the time. Now, holding a laser over an invisible 'lag spot' for a full second is basically impossible, so even with my experienced aim I'm dragging lasers all over the target now.

Against Assaults and other slow movers, they are as deadly as ever, but movement and HSR are kinda screwed up right now.

#11 Lupus Aurelius

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 11:37 AM

View PostRoadbeer, on 09 November 2013 - 10:59 AM, said:


Not entirely wrong, but I disagree with the last sentence.

It's not that AC is broken, it's that the beam/missile equivalent aren't on par with it (nor should they be, read on). It's like when poptarting was the FOTM, it wasn't because PPC/Gauss were fawsome, it's because their natural counter was nerfed into the ground. But that doesn't even explain what's going on here.

The problem is that people look at the weapons systems as Rock, Paper, Scissors.. that's wrongheaded thinking. Each type of weapon has it's place, and this is how it breaks down.

Ballistics = Direct Damage
Energy = Damage Over Time
Missiles = Area of Effect.

In a toe to toe fight, like you described, straight direct damage will always win. This doesn't have as much to do with pinpoint damage as it has to do with the mechanics of the system. DD is designed to put out massive damage, but it has the limitation of low ammo/ton. DoT is "Death by 1,000 cuts", it won't last in a direct fight, but after the DD ammo is gone, the DoT of energy weapons keep on going.

Missiles, in the same situation would, on the paper doll, have appeared to be even less effective because where your CT would be cored out, technically you did vastly more damage, but it's spread over a wide area of your opponent, so it "looks" like you did nothing.

This is the problem with statistics like DPS, because they look at it as If X weapon was fired at one specific area, and scored a direct hit, it will do Y amount of damage and all of this is done in a vacuum.

According to whom?!?!?!?!?!

Lasers are not suppose to be spread damage over time. TT, they were pinpoint, and the other MW games as well. Please do not state your opinion as a fact.

And yes, right now, if it is not dakka dakka, it's sub-optimal. Lasers need damage front loaded at least, or beam duration significantly reduced. Or ballistics need to not have pinpoint, and convergence eliminated. In TT, ACs were not a single round, but multiple rounds fired for the cummulative damage they were rated for. MWO making them a dingle round dramatically changed their performance. Beam duration for laser was never a consideration before, so introducing that to MWO also radically changed how that weapon performs relative to ballistic direct fire weapons.

Any non ballistic mech currently is at a severe disadvantage, which is why we do see much fewer of them nowadays.

-Ballistic firing speeds average at 2.36sec, or 4.24 times faster than BT, with average damage of 8.39, and an average heat of 2.14 . All damage is pinpoint.
-Energy weapons firing speeds average 3.14 sec, or 3.19 faster than BT, with average damage of 6.67, and an average heat of 6.34 . Unless you are on top of the target and able to hold the reticles on the same component, damage is spread across location, and probably 2 at least.

Edited by Lupus Aurelius, 09 November 2013 - 11:52 AM.


#12 MadCat02

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 11:41 AM

View PostRacerX, on 09 November 2013 - 09:36 AM, said:

Why does it seem that lasers are total garbage weapons now. AC seem to cut through armor like a hot knife through butter. LRMs are taking out mechs in droves. An yet when I shoot a horribly damaged mech with two Large Lasers and two Medium lasers in a red, unarmored torso section nothing happens. This isn't just one game and my aim is pretty good when the mech is shut down in 10 meters in front of me. I'm seeing this consistently in my matches. If I shoot something with twin AC/5s I'm coring folks. If I hit them with multiple lasers its like I'm shooting blanks. Is anyone else experiencing these types of issues?



Normal Lasers are perfectly balanced . They are better ton for ton than ACs.

1 Ton for 5 damage is the best DPS per TON if you think about it.

Also any AC build should have Large or Medium lasers for additional damage anyway .

#13 Diego Angelus

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 11:51 AM

View PostMadCat02, on 09 November 2013 - 11:41 AM, said:



Normal Lasers are perfectly balanced . They are better ton for ton than ACs.

1 Ton for 5 damage is the best DPS per TON if you think about it.

Also any AC build should have Large or Medium lasers for additional damage anyway .


Yes if we look at it like that but if you add in ghost heat when firing more of them and add in weight and space it takes to add DHS it doesn't look so good when compared to ballistics.

#14 Roadbeer

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 11:57 AM

View PostDavers, on 09 November 2013 - 11:14 AM, said:

1. If we aren't supposed to view weapons as "rock, paper, scissors", then there is no "natural counter" to pop tart snipers.

2. We have the ability to carry all the ammo we could need, so DoT weapons like lasers never get their chance to shine. I run out of ammo in my Illya in less than 1% of my matches with it. And while I can fire my 3 UACs all day long, the two medium lasers I carry can still run too hot .


1: I said as much, Just neglected to remove the "Poptart" analogy when I changed the flow of how that post went, Roles are more RPS than weapon systems.
2: Thats when it comes down to playstlye and builds, and has little to do with the weapon systems themselves. It goes something like this.

If you were to take any mech in the game, give it any Ballistic weapon system and 1 ton of ammo, and you take any other mech in the game and give it the equivalent weight in Energy weapons, and have them fight it out (Not the High Noon scenario described above) I'll put my money on the energy mech winning 9 times out of 10. because the Ballistic will have run out of ammo.

If you were to take any mech and give it any ballistic with 1 ton of ammo, and any mech with the equivalent tonnage missile launcher and 1 ton of ammo, I'm willing to bet on 2 things, 1. the Ballistic mech will win 9 times out of 10, and 2, the missile mech will out-damage it 9 out of 10, just the damage isn't pinpoint enough to score a win.

To me, this all seems obvious, and working as intended, it's when you throw in the ability to modify your chassis to allow a ridiculous amount of ammo, and smart play, that there is a perceived disparity between the weapon classes, but in reality, it's just comes down to, you can't put a quantifiable number on skill (though Elo tries). In your situation, you can be the king of all ballistics, but that's because you bring enough ammo to the field to withstand a protracted fight against another weapon class, what did you sacrifice on your build to be able to do that?

View PostLupus Aurelius, on 09 November 2013 - 11:37 AM, said:

According to whom?!?!?!?!?!

Lasers are not suppose to be spread damage over time. TT, they were pinpoint, and the other MW games as well. Please do not state your opinion as a fact.


I'm sorry, where did I state that it was a fact? Did I once say "It is a well known and popular fact"?
In TT, everything was "pin point" it was either hit or miss, and when it hit, where did it hit?, please don't try to equate TT rules in a 3D, real time, environment, it's been shown time and again how that doesn't work.

Edited by Roadbeer, 09 November 2013 - 12:03 PM.


#15 Mister Blastman

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 12:03 PM

View Postgavilatius, on 09 November 2013 - 11:00 AM, said:

I still think ACs should be multishot weapons what work like lasers, even if you think it "sucks" it's fair. Why? because MWO doesn't give a sh|t about ammunition and logistics for ballistics to have it's proper downside

AC20s would have 4 AC5-ish rounds in rapidfire (still counts as 1 round due to 80's Unicorn Scifi technology)
AC10s would fire 5 AC2-ish rounds in a rapidfire (still counts as 1 round due to 80's Unicorn Scifi technology)
AC5 can shoot 1 AC5 round
AC2 can shoot 1 AC2 round

this also opens up other patch PGI can take like
ULTRA ACs?
ROTARY ACs?

that are both cool, fun, AND balanced.


This. Making the ACs multishot weapons would add tremendous skill to them and balance them versus lasers. Also making PPCs spread and do splash vs. pinpoint would help a ton, also.

#16 mirrimon

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 12:07 PM

View PostRoadbeer, on 09 November 2013 - 11:57 AM, said:


1: I said as much, Just neglected to remove the "Poptart" analogy when I changed the flow of how that post went, Roles are more RPS than weapon systems.
2: Thats when it comes down to playstlye and builds, and has little to do with the weapon systems themselves. It goes something like this.

If you were to take any mech in the game, give it any Ballistic weapon system and 1 ton of ammo, and you take any other mech in the game and give it the equivalent weight in Energy weapons, and have them fight it out (Not the High Noon scenario described above) I'll put my money on the energy mech winning 9 times out of 10. because the Ballistic will have run out of ammo.

If you were to take any mech and give it any ballistic with 1 ton of ammo, and any mech with the equivalent tonnage missile launcher and 1 ton of ammo, I'm willing to bet on 2 things, 1. the Ballistic mech will win 9 times out of 10, and 2, the missile mech will out-damage it 9 out of 10, just the damage isn't pinpoint enough to score a win.

To me, this all seems obvious, and working as intended, it's when you throw in the ability to modify your chassis to allow a ridiculous amount of ammo, and smart play, that there is a perceived disparity between the weapon classes, but in reality, it's just comes down to, you can't put a quantifiable number on skill (though Elo tries). In your situation, you can be the king of all ballistics, but that's because you bring enough ammo to the field to withstand a protracted fight against another weapon class, what did you sacrifice on your build to be able to do that?


Often you are not really sacrificing much offensivly due to limited hardpoints. If the choice was an ac20 and 1 ton of ammo or 10ml and some heatsinks, that would swing more in favor of the energy.

#17 NextGame

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 12:14 PM

ballistics do need a slight tone down to be in line with lasers (or buff lasers, not bothered which) but the disparity is blatant at the moment, and if you aren't running ballistics you are at a disadvantage.

I'd go for the nerf rate of fire, or introduce multiple shells per shot personally

#18 Thorqemada

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 12:23 PM

The AC20 is the superior Ballsitic Weapon atm.
It delivers 20 Points of damage to the spot it hits, anything Medium or Light will already be crippled severely by only 1 hit (normaly), its cycle time alows tactical torsotwisting and its crit hits are most destructible.

With an AC2 or AC5 you can forget torsotwisting bcs you loose massive DPS, crit hits wont hurt much, the DPS is spread over a twisting target.
The AC10 and LBX10 suffer less from that effect but still do, in 2,5 seconds you can not do much twisting, you still loose DPS compared to an aC20 and even a Gauss.

I avoid using AC20s/Gauss, i want fights, not slaughters, i am not a Sniper, want to be versatile and multirole (i am happy having 3, better 4 different weapon types in my Mech).
I used it occasionally on some Mechs and was able to snapshot Lights with the old "Gauss firing mechanic" (have not used Gauss for a long time now) and my Atlas(F) allways had streaks of allmost 1-Alpha-Kills using an AC20 alongside the other torsoweaponry that do not happen using AC10s or lesser Guns.

Somehow the AC20 delivers a Punch that is way beyond other armaments - even double AC10s.
Tripple PPCs may have delivered a similar Punch in the past.

At all MWO gamemechanics still favour "Big-Hitters" very much compared to every other weapon.

Though as spectator i have witnessed quite some Lights that change from yellow armor to another yellow armor when getting hit by a Dual-AC20s...so even this godlike weapon suffers from some HSR issues.

Usually when i see my Opponent has an AC20 and is not already damaged it is better to not waste my SHD(P) in a fight against that one - there is no way i can win that fight.

Edited by Thorqemada, 09 November 2013 - 12:45 PM.


#19 Spr1ggan

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 01:04 PM

MWO should adopt a cone of fire system.

#20 xe N on

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 01:12 PM

AC/20 is very situational.

1. It takes alot of critical slot ... so it can be easily destroyed once armor is stripped
2. it has a long recharge time ... if you miss, you have a problem
3. The speed is so sloooooow ... I can nearly run faster then the AC/20 travelspeed.

Edited by xe N on, 09 November 2013 - 01:13 PM.






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