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An Extremely Thorough Review Of The Marauder Ii (Update Pg2)

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#1 Heavy Money

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Posted 11 September 2021 - 12:56 AM

UPDATE: Looks like the dorsal gun hitbox is not what I thought. There was a bunch of confusion about it as it had different hitboxes on launch, then got fixed quietly, and a bunch of the discussion out there is from before the fix. It is different torsos from different angles. So I retract my suggestions in that area (it still has its other issues though.)

The quirk pass has made the Marauder II much more viable and fun to play. You don’t have to feel bad about showing up in one now. But, style points aside, you’d still be better off bringing another 100 tonner. However, it is beginning to have a niche of its own. Some variants are nearly good, but others still don’t really do anything.

I’ve put in a bunch of time in each variant of the MAD II since the patch to try to get a feel for where they are at. This post will attempt to describe exactly what’s going on with the MAD II and why, will argue that it still needs more quirk love to stand with the other Inner Sphere hundred ton mechs, breakdown some notable loadouts for each variant and how they measure up to alternatives, and talk about what they’d need to actually be decent.

The guide on Grimmechs is still pretty much correct, even though it predates all the weapon and quirk changes. The MAD II has gotten a bit better all around, and some of these loadouts are more effective now. But overall, things haven’t changed all that much because the general gist of the article is that it’s durable but undergunned and too hot. (I think it overvalued the MAD II’s defense before, but now that it has been improved, it’s about right in that area.)

> TLDR; General Conclusions
  • MAD II is generally undergunned due to its hardpoint layout.
  • Other 100 tonners have both more offensive quirks and better hardpoints.
  • Most of the top assault damage dealer builds in the game are ballistic based due to ballistics scaling better with tonnage, and the MAD II cannot run any of them.
  • HSL and large heat quirks can help improve its alpha and sustained damage, especially with lasers.
  • It is very tough on paper thanks to new quirks, but only average in practice due to hitboxes and size. It is not so tough as to justify its other limitations (unlike the Atlas.)
  • MAD II should have at least as many offensive quirks as the others, and then more on top to make up for poor weapon options and hardpoint restrictions.
  • Durability is fine except for variants with the right torso dorsal gun, which should get more armor there (even if it has to come from somewhere else.)
  • PPC HSL quirks are great, but risk pigeonholing. Quirks to encourage other weapons without helping PPCs would be good, and/or HSL for more weapon types (large lasers).
  • Variant specific analysis and suggestions are in their sections below. Skip there if you don’t need to see the above points explained. They have their own TLDRs.
1 - The MAD II in General:




Context:
  • I am not a comp or faction player. My evaluation is entirely in the context of quick play.
  • I am comparing it to the Atlas, Fafnir, and Annihilator as these all function reasonably well right now (although not necessarily every variant. I assume there will be changes coming to some of these.)
  • I’m leaving out the King Crab because it is its own can of worms, and I’m not trying to compare with Clans because this will already be long enough.
  • We don’t have an exact definition of what exactly each IS 100 tonner’s niche/role is supposed to be, or if we should be thinking in those terms at all, so it's hard to say what exactly the MAD II is supposed to be excelling at or weak at compared to the others.
  • I am operating under the assumption that these are about the proper pros/cons for each mech, and that the MAD II shouldn’t steal their current niche(s).
  • - Atlas: Best Brawling+Tanking at cost of range and mount locations.
  • - Annihilator: Highest damage and decent toughness at cost of speed, size, and mounts.
  • - Fafnir: High damage, not as tanky, giant torsos, but mounts are better and often ECM.
  • This leaves the MAD II the implicit role of having more mobility and good durability, but less firepower. Thanks to the mobility upgrade and first quirk pass, it has the first two well enough. Its firepower ought to be lower than the others to compensate, but not this much lower.
Offense:




The primary problem of the MAD II is simply that it’s a 100 ton damage dealer that doesn’t actually deal damage all that well compared to its competition, and even gets out gunned by plenty of lighter assaults. It is still going to put some pain down range, but not on the level of the others.
  • The MAD II is undergunned because its hardpoints are primarily in the Right Torso and Arms, severely limiting what sorts of gun you can fit. This is true of the Marauder and Marauder IIC as well, but it’s not such a problem because they have less tonnage to spend and/or smaller Clan weapons.
  • (The 4HP has very different hardpoints and is kind of an exception and will be talked about in its variant section. The Alpha does have some left torso hardpoints but it doesn’t really change the issue.)
  • Stacked right torso hardpoints mean almost all your eggs are in one basket (with a giant dorsal cannon that can be shot all the time, so even shielding isn’t that great). And you get forced into standard engines sooner, reducing your firepower.
  • This coupled with forced lower arm actuators in every variant means that none can run double 20 size ballistic weapons, more than two 10 sized, or more than 2 UAC5s. The advantages of lower arm actuators really don’t make up for this.
  • Annihilators and Fafnirs are known for running crushing loadouts like UAC dakka, dual heavy gauss, and quad LB10Xs. The MAD II cannot run any of these top loadouts due to hardpoint locations.
  • This leaves it working with mostly 5 and 10 size ballistics, PPCs, and lasers. It can do some damage with these, but generally much less than doing an equivalent loadout on an Annihilator or Fafnir due to slot limitations and quirks. And we’re not seeing these loadouts on those mechs anyway as they have stronger options.
  • The inability to run the larger weapons generally reduces short range alpha size compared to the others.
  • The torso hardpoints are quite high above the cockpit, and the arms are low. You would think that the high hardpoints would make it a good hill peeker, but generally you cannot fit enough weapons into them to really be worth it. You end up having to expose yourself to use your arms anyway (like an Annihilator, but you don’t have the same firepower to justify it.) Many other assaults do it much better due to more than 2-3 high mounted hardpoints (like the Stalker) and they don’t have giant dorsal guns to give away their position long before they can see a target.
  • The distance between torso and arm mounts gives horrible convergence at long range, which undermines the sniper builds several variants are encouraged towards.
  • There are brawler loadouts some variants can run, but they are mostly based around Snubs or Medium Pulse Lasers with a single large ballistic (or SRMs for the 4HP.) It’s logical to compare these to the Atlas as it also cannot run two large ballistics, but the comparison doesn’t end well for the MAD II.
There’s no real net positive to any of this hardpoint stuff. But they aren’t going to change, and they do give variety as compared to the other options. We just need to give the MAD II enough quirks to compensate.




Speaking of quirks...
  • For the most part, the other 100 ton mechs have more offensive quirks than the MAD II despite also having much better hardpoints.
  • Every single Atlas, Fafnir and Annihilator has -10% heat for its relevant weapons. Several MAD IIs were given various heat quirks recently, but often less or only one weapon type. Why not give them all at least -10% heat too?
  • Almost every one of the others also has other offensive quirks like 10% cooldown of some sort, weapon velocity, or even more -heat for certain weapons. (Of course, there’s context to this stuff, like hardpoints on those mechs. Also, I assume a bunch of those weapon specific quirks will get generalized in time.)
  • We should expect that the MAD II would need the same level of offensive quirks, and then also even more to compensate for the hardpoint issues if we wanted it to be on the same level of firepower. (Note that I am advocating for it to have slightly less firepower than the others though, due to its mobility and durability.)
  • HSL quirks were a good choice as they open up new loadouts that the others can’t just do better, and tempt players with a unique experience. They increase alpha strike size without changing sustained damage the way cooldown or more -heat would.
  • However, they risk pigeonholing the mech. Right now we have multiple variants that are basically just able to do PPCs (and not necessarily well). The solution is to give HSL quirks for more weapon types (Large Lasers!) and/or other buffs to non-PPC weapons.
  • Given the nature of the hardpoints being split between high torsos and low arms, alpha increases from HSL have less of an impact than they would on other mechs with more high hardpoints. Being able to alpha an extra weapon means less when it’s stuck in a low arm, forcing you to expose the whole mech to use it. So we should not fear more HSL.
The problem of weapon scaling:





Another way of framing the firepower problems of the MAD II is simply to note that the best loadouts out there are based around certain weapons, it doesn’t have them, and you can’t get equivalent results with other weapon types (and this is also true of other mechs/variants out there who also can’t do these).

There is no energy or missile weapon equivalent of UAC Dakka or 4xLB10X loadouts. You cannot make a loadout using any combination of the weapons in the same range bracket (MRMs, Large Lasers, PPCs) that can compete with the burst damage+DPS+sustained damage of these loadouts (there are some that will burst for more, but at even greater cost of the other two.)

To get an idea of the ballpark we’re talking about (dps number are Avg/Max from mechDB, with avg meaning heat factored in):
  • The 4LB10X Fafnir is dealing 14.67/17.78 dps and takes so long to heat cap that it basically doesn’t count and you can ignore that first number (especially with coolshot)
  • UAC Dakka Annihilator is dealing 8.57/14.02 dps without double tapping, and somewhere upwards of 20 with. Where exactly it heat caps is hard to say due to jams and all, but it’s after a huge amount of damage.
In comparison...
  • 8LL MAD II is dealing 6.09/16.36 dps and heat caps at ~2 volleys, with unimpressive cooling speed (54.5 capacity, 4.18/s dissipation). Slightly higher alpha than the ballistic builds if you ignore that its staggered laser burns.
  • 6LPL MAD II is dealing 6.91/17.96 dps and heat caps at ~2.5 volleys. (And this is closer range.)
  • MRM120 MAD II is dealing 9.73/27.91 dps and heat caps at just over ~2 volleys (but of course has spread and velocity issues, and miserable cooling.)
So we’re seeing these non-ballistic builds that look like they’re hitting comparative damage numbers if you don’t factor in heat, but as soon as you do, they fall flat on their faces. They can’t stick out a long engagement, and have long periods of vulnerability while they cool. What advantage are they gaining for this massive disparity in performance? In the case of the MRMs, at least they really hurt for those few seconds they can fire. In the case of the large laser builds? Pretty much nothing. Laser burn can be a bit more focused than dakka if you’re good and they don’t need to worry about velocity or ammo I guess. Is that enough to make up the difference? Well, clearly not because nobody is running these.





This disparity is because ballistic weapons scale with tonnage, but most others don’t beyond a certain point. For example, standard IS laservomit is 4LL+ERMLs. A heavy mech can run this and plenty of heatsinks. IS Assault mech laservomit doesn’t really get any better as you don’t have the hardpoints for more ERMLs, and more tonnage doesn’t help you increase the size of your alpha (you’re capped by ghost heat), or your heat efficiency (you’re out of slots for heatsinks.)

So we get cases like the MAD-4A which has 8 energy, but cannot run either a bigger alpha strike or significantly better heat efficiency than the same loadout on a heavy mech, and is way worse at peeking due to its size and speed. You can put all your extra tonnage into a standard engine and maximize heatsinks, but you’ll still be unimpressive in both alpha and sustained damage (4LL+4ERML, std 350 = 7.42/12.57dps, 56.7 alpha). In contrast, clan laservomit scales much better due to more hardpoints for ERML, better ability to eat ghost heat from an extra LPL or ERLL, and hardpoint flexibility to add in a gauss or another ballistic. It doesn’t sustain but has large alphas.

You’d think you can just use all your tonnage to run more large lasers like the above builds, but these take up even more slots and reduce your heatsinks. And they do not increase your alpha damage due to ghost heat (they often reduce it, since you’re losing ERMLs.) So you end up stagger firing two groups of big lasers (meaning you’re now basically a facetime build) that combined still have an unimpressive alpha compared to alternatives, and are totally unsustainable due to heat (unlike real facetime sustained damage builds.)

In contrast, UAC dakka builds, LB10Xs, heavy gauss, etc are not hitting any of these issues. The more tonnage you have, the more firepower you get. This is why most of the top assault damage dealer loadouts are ballistic based (especially for IS), and you cannot do an equivalent with other weapons. (IS large lasers are the worst example of this, but you see similar scaling issues in other areas too.)

This isn’t a problem that can easily be fixed by changing any weapon stats, as those will impact balance for everything else, and this is really only a problem for 90-100 ton IS mechs.

What ought to be an option is to switch to Standard Heatsink builds, where at least you can put your tonnage into those. Then even if your laservomit wasn’t doing more damage, you could at least have much better efficiency. But the math on this doesn’t work out (except for a few rare cases). If we had engine heatsinks always be DHS, then perhaps it would.

These ballistic builds are very strong, but are not breaking the game. There’s no particular reason we couldn’t have other weapon types doing equivalent amounts of damage+sustain in the same range bracket (by equivalent, I of course mean taking into account all the relevant factors like ammo use, engagement length, burn time vs scatter, etc). The straightforward way to accomplish this is to use HSL quirks to increase potential alpha size, and heat quirks for efficiency, especially when it comes to large lasers. This will be necessary if we want the MAD II (or other non-ballistic IS assault mechs) to be able to run loadouts even remotely approaching the big ballistic builds in effectiveness.


Defense:

The MAD II is tricky to evaluate defensively due to its odd geometry. On paper, the recent armor+crit chance quirks have made it second only to the Atlas in defense. (For now, at least. I assume we’ll be seeing some defense buffs on at least some Fafnirs, and maybe more.) But this doesn’t tell the whole story due to its skewed hitbox profile and sheer size.
  • The hitboxes do very well if facing the source of fire. Very little twisting is needed to spread damage (unlike the Atlas and Fafnir). Spread weapons like LBXs and MRMs can be practically laughed off.
  • From the side, the torsos are massive and extend back and up, making them extremely easy to single out even if the mech is twisting. They are also very vulnerable to spread weapons that normally can’t get all their damage onto one component (especially at close range), and easy to keep laser burn on.
  • The large side torsos do allow for shielding/dead side builds. But these builds tend to end up under gunning the mech even more than usual (assuming a full deadside where you don’t put weapons in that arm.) So the practical value of this is dubious, and is not enough to make otherwise weak loadouts worth playing.
  • The mech is so long it often can’t get cover in places anything else could.
  • The arms are low slung and don’t really provide any shielding for the side torsos. The Atlas is capable of nearly fully occluding its torsos if it turns its side to the shooter. The Fafnir and Annihilator’s arms aren’t really shields, but they at least cover a bit. (The silver lining is that nobody shoots your arms, so you can often remove some armor even if you have weapons in them.)
  • Many MAD IIs also have a massive dorsal gun due to weapons in their right torsos. This exposes the right torso from any side (but is a small profile from the front), and can often be shot over cover that would otherwise shield the mech. Variants with this will generally lose most of their firepower once the right torso is lost.
  • These hitboxes also make for a situation where the ability of the MAD II to spread damage is more a matter of the skill of the attacker. A good Atlas pilot can twist in ways that only the most accurate of shooters can get around because some of its hitboxes will completely block others. But a MAD II can twirl around all day and you can still drop shots exactly where you want if your aim is good enough to hit the dorsal gun while rotating (not that hard), and can also negate its good front hitboxes by shooting the top rear of the side torsos.
  • This means that in lower tiers, the MAD II will be quite durable even with an unskilled pilot, and may take even more fire to kill than an equivalent Atlas. But at higher tiers, the right torso will just get picked apart, and even a skilled pilot can’t do a whole lot about it.
So while the MAD II looks tough at first glance, in practice it isn’t especially survivable after you account for all these issues. It comes out ahead of the Fafnir, but I’m not convinced it does better than the Annihilator. The advantage it has from the front is cancelled out by its weaknesses from the sides and especially by the dorsal gun. And it tends to lose most of its firepower earlier, so even if the total damage taken before you die looks impressive, the amount of damage necessary to cripple your firepower is generally lower than the alternatives.





Now, I am not claiming that this skewed durability is a problem. It provides a different playstyle that rewards good use of that frontal toughness, and is exactly how Marauders are meant to be in universe. But we should not consider the MAD II to be especially tough because of the on paper values and frontal durability without considering the full context. It isn’t so tough as to justify its weaknesses in other areas (unlike the Atlas, which bulldozes through all its hardpoint and lack of range issues with its massive durability.)

The dorsal gun is a big problem though, especially in higher tiers. I suggest giving these variants (all but 4HP) some more right torso armor, even if it has to come off somewhere else. The rest is probably fine, unless the Annihilator also gets more armor quirks, in which case it could use a bit more on side torsos too.


Mobility:

Not much to say here because the mobility is good!
  • It has the second best twist after the Atlas, and generally feels good to play since the mobility patch.
  • The engine cap is nice, but often not very useful. If you’re running above a 325, you’re probably sacrificing firepower, which is not worth a couple more kph. Some laser builds can use it for extra heatsinks, but the return on tonnage invested for heat is poor and these builds are weak.
  • It does have jump jets! And they are a lot of fun since the patch. This is certainly distinctive and one of the main reasons to play it. But we don’t want it to be the only reason. You pay a significant price in slots and tons to use these. If we also factor them into its strength in other ways, we risk a situation where there’s no point in running the MAD II except for JJ builds.
2 - The Variants:




There are a variety of new loadout options that have become available since the Grimmechs article. Let’s look at some of those, and also other possible loadouts that could be made more viable with some quirk help. I’m assuming that we want each variant to have at least two playstyles. Some of the changes I am suggesting will look large at first glance, but considering the context of the problem and how some of these things scale, I think they are moderate, and will not bring any loadout to the power level of the current top loadouts on other mechs.

(Note: I’ve played these but didn’t save the exact loadout at the time. I’ve tossed a lot of these together on mechDB while writing this and everything isn’t 100% optimized so don’t necessarily copy these exactly. I also tend to dump the crap out of leg and even arm armor in an attempt to squeeze out some more badly needed firepower. This is not always a good idea.)

MAD-4A:

The 4A should be a notable mech as it is one of only two 100 ton IS pure energy mechs. But due to the weapon scaling issue discussed above, pure energy loadouts generally end at the Battlemaster and Charger. Pure energy is failing for the Banshee, MAD II, and Annihilator (except perhaps for some niche super long range faction/comp builds using ERPPCs and ERLLs, i’m not really up on these).

The 4A got relatively few quirks in the quirk pass, and was skipped for reduced crit chance. I’m not sure why this was done, as this variant isn’t doing anything particularly spectacular to explain less defense. The new PPC HSL quirk has opened up some new and interesting loadouts, but also put it at risk of being pigeonholed into them.

PPC loadouts:

Triple HPPC is new, but forces a standard engine. You run it with max heatsinks and are undergunned, or run it with Medium Lasers+JJs and have terrible heat problems, but it’s less vulnerable to being pushed and can defend itself slightly better than most LRM boats. This is quite fun to play, but it can’t be called good. The AWS-8Q runs much the same thanks to -15% heat quirks, and that’s hardly some super build. The 4A isn’t really gaining anything for all its extra size and tonnage other than the ability to further gut its heat for some JJs.

Triple ERPPC is also new and much like the above. It handles heat better of course, but does not have the 45dmg PPFLD that makes the other notable. If you want to hunker down behind a hill and peek or poptart (very slowly) with three ERPPCs this can do that, but it's kind of a waste of a 100 ton mech.

Close Range loadouts:

The 4A was already capable of close range pulse loadouts like 3LPL+5MPL from grimmechs. Now it can also do 4SNPPC+4MPL, trading some range for a bit of alpha and pinpoint. Comparatively, neither loadout is going to stand up to anything an Atlas can do on firepower alone, let alone durability. For example, Kraken SNAC has more alpha, more pinpoint damage, more dps, more heat efficiency, with the only drawback being range limit on the SRMs (which could be MPLs instead, and it’d still do more damage.) And that’s on an Atlas with all its durability advantages. (Again, the MAD II could gut its cooling for JJs, but the potential positioning advantage can’t make up for the other issues.)

How much heat reduction would these close range loadouts need in order to be worth running instead of Dual Heavy Gauss loadouts on Fafnir or Annihilator, or anything short range on any Atlas? (Within the context that it should be a bit lower on firepower than these others, but make up for it in some combination of mobility/durability/range/flexibility.)

Laser Loadouts:

The 4A can fit 8LL doing 6.09/16.36 dps or 7LL+JJs doing 6.41/14.32 dps. To use it you have to expose enough to use your arms and stagger fire, making this essentially a facetime build that lacks the DPS and sustain of other facetime builds. Even if there was no ghost heat at all to let you alpha all 8 at once, you’d be doing only 72 damage, which is unimpressive compared to clan alphas despite the lower burn time, and those aren’t breaking the game. (Those loadouts are hot, but this also has terrible cooling.) Even just HSL+1 would help get some more alpha strike without impacting overall dps.

6xLPL is currently a lot of fun on the Boar’s Head, thanks to it now having -15% energy heat. This loadout has downsides and I’m not claiming it to be super competitive. But it’s currently a lot of fun in Quickplay because you have more range than usual for an Atlas and decent damage, while still having that great durability and twist speed. In comparison, the 6LPL 4A doesn’t have the defense or other offensive quirks of the Boar’s Head and gains only marginally on heat (if you dump an arm and have most of your DHS in the left side.) It ought to have notably better offense considering it lacks the defense of an Atlas.

On the laservomit side, we have 3LPL+5ERML(7.63/14.46, 55.8 alpha) and 4LL+4ERML (7.42/12.57, 56 alpha.) These aren’t new, but I wanted to take note of how terrible they are. They’re nice on a heavy mech, but the 4A is gaining nothing in alpha and only a little bit in sustained dps for all its comparative size and sluggishness. And if you want JJs, you’re running an LE with even less heat. You could literally give it 100% heat reduction and these would still be unimpressive. That’s probably too far, but let’s think about what it would look like if we had LL HSL+1 and could alpha these: 4LPL+4ERML+JJs, 5LL+3ERML+JJ. (Still lower than Clan, but IS laservomit is supposed to be due to better duration.)

> 4A TLDR/Conclusions:

Everything is far too hot and weak due to energy weapons not scaling well with tonnage (especially IS lasers). Energy builds are supposed to have the tradeoff of getting heat capped in return for not needing to worry about ammo, etc. That makes sense when the performance of the loadouts are similar. But these loadouts are miles behind in DPS compared to the competition, unimpressive for alpha strikes, and have terrible heat issues too.

For the 4A to be good, it needs to be able to deal some decent dps and sustain it for more than a couple volleys and/or not have huge deadtime waiting to cool, or it needs to have very impressive alphas. Everything needs heat improvements of some sort, and they need a lot of it. That will help sustain damage. We can buff laser alpha strikes with Larger Laser HSL. Buffing medium lasers is an easy way to generally help all builds without much risk of breaking anything or infringing on other weapon roles.

Suggested Quirk changes:
  • -25% Crit chance receiving
  • -20% Heat instead of current (or equivalent, could be some combo with heat cap and/or dissipation too)
  • Large Laser HSL+1 (could be just Large and Large Pulse if 8xERLL is a problem)
  • +10% energy range (maybe not ERPPCs and ERLLs though?)
  • Another +10% medium laser range. (Get a range edge over brawlers to compensate for lower damage)
  • -10% laser cooldown
  • +10 Right Torso armor (could be taken from arms/legs)
These look like some big numbers compared to many quirks at first, but look at the disparity between the numbers these builds actually put out and what other builds out there can do, and it’s necessary. These should be enough to get the 4A on the field, but it’s not going to steal any thunder from UAC Dakka or 4xLB10X builds or brawler Atlases.





MAD-6S:

The 6S was noted in the Grimmechs article for its terrible firepower, even by MAD II standards. Its 6E hardpoints mean that pretty much everything said about the 4A applies to it. The ballistic hardpoint makes you want to run it with a big gun brawling loadout, but those are unimpressive with just 6E alongside. The PPC and ERPPC HSL quirks steer you towards some loadouts with nice pinpoint, but they’re a meme with this level of heat. The option for a 4th JJ would be cool if you could ever spare the tons.

It is also very similar to the 5A in hardpoints, and similar to the 4L in that it leans towards long range PPFLD. Keeping these variants distinct could be tough.

Loadouts:

LGR+4ERPPC+JJs is new and distinct due to the combined ERPPC HSL+2. 50 PPFLD is no joke either. But it’s ~80% heat per alpha after skills. Then you’ve got absolutely terrible convergence at range and no velocity bonuses, meaning unreliable hits even if you’re normally a good shot. (Your target has time to see the ERPPC shots coming and dodge.) Considering you can do 40 PPFLD with 2xLGR+2ERPPC on a variety of platforms, including much lower profile heavies, it’s not so much of a gain as to justify the size and mobility problems even if your firepower was efficient.

SNAC+4 JJs is an absolutely savage amount of PPFLD up close and a lot of fun to play. But of course, it is ruined by the heat even if you drop the JJs for more DHS. Compare again to the SNAC Kraken and there’s no contest. Its lower dps, its way hotter, its less durable, everything is worse except the SRM range limit. It should be ahead in a category or two.

I’ve also tried various builds like UAC10+4PPCs (or AC10), but it just doesn’t work. It’s more viable than the 4xERPPCs due to lower heat and the PPFLD is still nice, but the downtime and vulnerability to harassment is just far too much. If you could fit JJs and also have reasonable heat then maybe this could be worth it, but it’ll take a lot of heat quirks. There are other similar PPFLD loadouts that do work because they use more ACs and less PPCs, so heat isn’t as bad, such as 2AC10+2HPPC Fafnir. Its 54% heat per alpha instead of 70% for the same damage. The 6S can do AC10+3HPPCs to get to 55 dmg, but then you’re at 80% heat.

There are laser based loadouts like UAC10+4LL+2ERML and HGR+2LPL+4ERML that have gotten more viable but still aren’t good. This is an area where adding Large Laser HSL could get some new options like HGR+4LPL or HGR+5LL. Efficiency and overall dps would still be weak compared to regular 2xHGR builds, but you’d have some decent alpha and a bit more range to work with than them.

> 6S TLDR/Conclusions:

It’s too hot and does too little damage. As before, throw heat quirks at it until it isn’t bad. If we want it to snipe properly, it will need PPC velocity. If we want it to do loadouts with a big ballistic, it needs cooldown to get the dps up and perhaps range to make it worth using over versions that can run two large ballistics (thus dealing way more damage). If we want it to ever use those AMS hardpoints despite the proportionally worse slot cost, we should buff them too.

Suggested Quirk changes:
  • -15% Heat (or equivalent, could be some combo with heat cap and/or dissipation too)
  • Large Laser HSL+1 (all types)
  • +10-20% velocity (perhaps more for big ballistics and less for PPCS?)
  • -10% Ballistic cooldown
  • +10% Ballistic range
  • -10% Laser cooldown
  • +10% Laser range
  • +15% AMS range
  • Big AMS ammo quirk once those come? (to reduce slots needed)
  • +10 Right Torso armor (could be taken from arms/legs)
This should make those SNAC and sniper builds worth a second look. I’m not sure it’ll be enough for anything else to really be efficient, but at least there will be some new things to experiment with.





MAD-5A:

It’s the only MAD II variant that isn’t totally undergunned! Given its two ballistic hardpoints in the right torso, it is capable of running half of a proper ballistic loadout, and is attempting to make up for the other half with 6E hardpoints. This works at close ranges only, and for about 5 seconds.

The 5A’s hardpoints are very similar to the 6S so there’s a lot of potential loadout crossover. We can quirk them for different roles, but it’s not clear who ought to do what. I’m assuming since the 6S already got even more PPC HSL that the 5A shouldn’t also be a PPC sniper. (If it had PPC HSL+1, then it would totally overshadow the 6S and 4L with some form of 2LGR+3ERPPC, possibly becoming the best sniper in the game.) Perhaps we want that, but I will focus on its aspect as a closer range damage dealer.

Loadouts:

2LB10X+6MPL and 2LB10X+3SNPPC will both do some nice damage and can keep pressure on with the LB10Xs. HGR+3LPL+3ML has nearly Clan gaussvomit level alpha but without the range, and lacks the sustained damage of a proper 2HGR build. Alternatively, UAC20+3LPL+3ML can be a bit friendlier to play and can use a LE. UACs+6ERML is also solid on damage, and 2RAC5+6ML is seriously nasty dps by any standard (but others do it better, and still nobody really runs those because lol RACs). All of these fall behind on heat compared to full ballistic builds, have less range (except for the HGR), and aren’t gaining any real pros for these cons.

These can be compared to similar loadouts on the Atlas-D or Boar’s Head. The Atlas crushes the 5A on both offense and defense.

> 5A TLDR/Conclusions:

The damage is mostly fine, but it needs heat and range to make these loadouts viable and distinct from the better versions other mechs can run. It defaults to using medium lasers as the secondary weapon, so making those more efficient goes a long way.

Suggested Quirk changes:
  • -10% heat instead of current
  • -10% energy heat
  • +10% range
  • +10% medium laser range
  • +10 Right Torso armor (could be taken from arms/legs)
MAD-4L:





The coolest stealth sniper mech! It is different from the previous variants in that it is defined by its arm weapons more than its right torso. Its primary role of sniping with some combination of Gauss and ERPPCs is clear, but it needs to get a bit better at it to make up for being slow and needing to expose itself to use arm weapons.

Its secondary role is unclear due to hardpoint overlap with the AL. The 4L can do a number of unimpressive AC2 or mixed AC5+UAC5 builds, but the Alpha is already better on that front with its UAC jam quirk.

Sniper Loadouts:

You used to choose between 2GR+ERPPC and 2GR+2ERPPC depending on if you wanted stealth or damage. GR+LGR+2ERPPC has taken over since the 420 patch as the clear winner if you can put up with the gauss’s different charge times (it is really annoying, please don’t leave this as the best loadout). You pick up only 5 pinpoint alpha over the various 2xLGR+2xERPPC mechs out there, which are way less clunky than you and have better mounts. So this doesn’t really get played, but it’s close! (Same problem with 2GR+2ERLL. The Night Gyr or any proper ERLL boat laughs at you as you waddle back to cover.)

A bit of cooldown would help the miserable dps. Changing the ERPPC HSL to all PPC HSL would give the option of 2xGR+HPPC, getting that 45PPFLD without mucking about at the cost of range and overall DPS. Cooldown bonuses to GRs but not LGRs specifically would help give a reason to run them instead. (I still don’t understand why GRs were moved to the same range bracket as LGRs instead of staying where they were and being buffed in some other way. We’re missing out on there being LGR sniper loadouts and higher damage but shorter range GR pinpoint damage dealers.)

A change to Gauss HSL to allow 2GR+2PPC but not 2GR+2ERPPC could also work. Or perhaps just let the thing fire 2GR+ERPPC all at once. If heavies can get 40PPFLD with 2LGR+2ERPPC, why not let the giant fat assault that has to expose everything have the full 50PPFLD?

Infotech like target info gathering or sensor quirks wouldn’t be out of place either to help its sniper role.

AC Loadouts:

As Grimmechs notes, there are AC2+ERPPC and Quad RAC2 loadouts, but they are unimpressive. There could also be 4 AC5/LB5X builds (or some combo with 2UAC5 and 2 of another) with a PPC or 2ERLLs. These are currently fairly forgiving on heat (especially with the existing -15% energy heat), but too low on dps considering the exposure needed (but not by much). This can be easily fixed with AC cooldown and ammo quirks though, and made more attractive with AC velocity.

RAC HSL and perhaps jam chance could make a 4RAC2 build viable, or even the unsustainable but no doubt hilarious 2RAC5+2RAC2? (Still less powerful than proper UAC Dakka.)

> 4L TLDR/Conclusions:

It’s a cool sniper mech that just needs to snipe a bit harder/faster to be worth its size and arm mounts (but I’m not really sure how much more, as I know this’ll impact Faction Play/Comp more, so those suggestions are tentative.) And if we give it some AC/RAC quirks, it can nearly do real Dakka for a second playstyle! Some infotech stuff like target info time wouldn’t be out of place either.

Suggested Quirk changes:
  • -10% heat and -5% energy instead of current
  • 10% Ballistic CD (could just be GR and ACs to leave out LGR, or just ACs)
  • ERPPC HSL changed to all PPC
  • Gauss HSL changed to allow for 2GR+2ERPPC?
  • RAC HSL changed to allow 4RAC2 or 2RAC5+2RAC2
  • RAC Jam chance -20% (maybe just RAC2)
  • AC and RAC velocity +20% (might be too much to give velo to sniper weapons)
  • +20% target info gathering?
  • +10 Right Torso armor (could be taken from arms/legs)
MAD-AL:





The Alpha is currently the most functional of the MAD II’s and best shows the difference in playstyle that MAD IIs should have from other 100 ton assaults (which I have based my other suggestions around). It is still undergunned, but the quirk pass giving it -10% heat and cooldown pushed it from being frustratingly hot for no real return to feeling playable but mediocre. It is doing what it should, it just needs more. You can run all three jump jets and still have some decent bursts of damage at mid to long range, just don’t try to fight a real brawler or ranged specialist. I endorse getting it because I am confident that you too will think “Oh yeah, this is cool and different, just needs a bit more punch!”

The hardpoints are a bit awkward. It’s a 4L with two missile hardpoints instead of ECM. It works because the core of its loadouts are UACs thanks to its Jam Chance quirk, and UACs are good. But of course it can’t do true dakka and, like the 5A, is trying to make up the rest of the loadout with other weapon types. But the hardpoints are limited. There’s no loadout that makes good use of all three weapon types other than close range brawlers that use large ballistics that the AL cannot fit in its arms. You use either the energy or the missile hardpoints, so you effectively have very few to work with, and can’t rely on a bunch of medium lasers like most variants.

Loadouts:

Many of the AL’s loadouts are based around UAC10s+2 of something else. There’s 2UAC10+MRM50 which has the best offense at the usual cost of missile spread, 2UAC10+2LL with less damage but better cooling, and my favorite, 2UAC10+2PPCs with burst and range. All of these can make a tradeoff between heat, engine and JJs. The dps of these doesn’t look great on paper, but when you account for the UAC double tap and reduced jam, they do better. They’re about on the level of real UAC dakka loadouts that don’t double tap.

Next there are loadouts based around 2 or 5 sized ballistics in the arms: 2UAC5+2AC5+PPC, 4UAC2+ERPPC, and anything from the 4L section. These have slightly better dps and range, but you’re more arm heavy and they spread worse than the UAC10s. They are also harder to fit JJs into.

There could technically be other loadouts like LB10Xs+energy weapons, but the restricted hardpoints make this tough, and they don’t benefit from the UAC jam chance. If you had a third energy and/or missile, there’d be a bunch more options.

> AL TLDR/Conclusions:

The Alpha is about UACs+(usually)PPCs for medium to long range non-PPFLD fire. For that to be good, it needs to have good and sustained dps, which it doesn’t. It has gotten better with the heat and cooldown it’s already gotten, so let’s just keep going in that direction until it does get good, and also toss it some quality of life stuff because it’s not going to be super competitive even with more buffs, but it could be fun.

Suggested Quirk changes:
  • Upgrade that -10% heat to -20%
  • UAC jam chance from -20% to -40% (a way to add sustained dps other than more cooldown)
  • +30% velocity (that might be too high, but it’d make it distinctive!)
  • +10% range
  • -20% MRM spread (can we reduce UAC spread?)
  • +10 Right Torso armor (it’s got that dorsal gun in most loadouts still)
MAD-4HP:





It’s a missile boat, and doesn’t have the usual problem of all its weapons stacked in the right torso, and doesn’t rely on its arms so much for firepower. Generally, it doesn’t have the problems that usually define the MAD II. It also has slightly different agility than the others, and I assume that’s why it got lower armor quirks. Grimmechs says pretty nice things about its firepower as an SRM boat, but my experiences don’t agree.

I’ve left it till last because I don’t like it all that much or have strong suggestions for it beyond helping the missile heat. (Word is Rockets are getting some attention, so maybe we’ll see it come into its own then?)

SRM Loadouts:

Grimmechs ranks the 4SRM6a+4SRM4a build as A tier. The damage is high and perhaps it is that good, but I certainly haven’t seen this play out in practice for myself or anyone else. It’s putting similar damage on paper to an Atlas, but as usual, without all the other advantages of that mech. And being all SRMs means stagger firing. I’m not saying it’s particularly bad, and it’s probably above average for MAD IIs overall. But going into it after playing an Atlas, Fafnir, or any of a variety of other brawler assaults (including ones that use SRMs), it doesn’t produce results.

With the new energy heat quirk, I’ve also tested out 3Snub+4SRMa builds to avoid the ghost heat issue. This is a side-grade that trades a higher alpha for lower overall dps and sustained damage. It also bothers me a bit less as I have some weapons that aren’t range capped.

MRM Loadouts:

It can run MRM120, which is a nasty amount of damage before you heat cap if you don’t spread it too much. The Wrath can also do this with ECM and a heat quirk, and it’s not considered to be particularly special. Both are low on ammo.MRMs are odd overall. They do very well on medium and heavy mechs, but seem less impressive on assaults, even in very large amounts. And they have the sandblaster effect, where you can end up unable to pinpoint a location to properly finish a kill, so I prefer to run them mixed with other things. The 4HP’s only option is low arm mounted energy, which doesn’t compliment them all that well and makes heat even more of a problem. Improved spread would help.

LRM Loadouts:

It seems to play second fiddle to the FNR-5E’s LRM80 build, which has heat, range, and velocity quirks over it. The 4HP’s own LRM80 ought to not be far behind due to having its missiles in its side torsos, more armor, and tag. But I’ve never seen it do LRMs particularly successfully. It would be nice if it could be quirked in such a way as to also be useful, but not totally eclipse the Fafnir. Perhaps a focus more on LRM10’s or even 5’s to take advantage of its hardpoints?

[u]> 4HP TLDR/Conclusions:[/u]

It’s a big missile boat that can do some serious damage with SRMs if you get close enough, can sandblast with MRMs well (which would be good if that was good), and is coming in second in a two person race on LRMs. The upgrade to energy heat doesn’t really help anything, as none of its notable loadouts use energy anyway. Making the heat quirk apply to everything will help in general. Extra velocity can help a lot, but I’d be cautious about giving it to the LRMs as it might then intrude on the FNR-5E.

Suggested Quirk changes:
  • -10% energy heat turned to -10% all heat
  • +10% SRM and MRM velocity
  • -10% MRM spread (could be all missiles, but might be too much on the others?)
  • Some laser (even just medium laser) quirks could help give it some more options.
  • It needs something for LRMs, but it’s hard to say what given their current state.
Thanks for reading, and don’t forget to buy a Marauder II so you can tell me how I’m wrong about everything. I would be very happy to learn anything to contradict my gloomy review Posted Image

Edited by Heavy Money, 02 November 2021 - 02:06 AM.


#2 TheUltimateGhost

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Posted 11 September 2021 - 05:57 AM

okay, so I've looked at a few builds here, and imo most of them aren't quite optimized (e.g. your 8LL build can easily fit a STD engine).
that said, they're close enough to give a decent image of how this mech performs.

personally I was really hyped about the 4ERPPC 1LGAUSS 6S, but after playing it for quite some time, it honestly was just disappointing in terms of damage output. that said though, it wasn't actually the mounts, convergence and velocity bothering me, it was just the fact that it needs a 10% heatgen quirk to keep up with the 4ERPPC 2LGAUSS ANH-1P.

as for the tankiness of the MADII, imo it's probably the second tankiest 100-tonner, only surpassed by our lord and savior, the annihilator. dwf, faffy, atlas, kdk, kgc are just walking CTs tbh.

#3 Heavy Money

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Posted 11 September 2021 - 10:11 AM

I'm being told that the Dorsal Gun hitbox isn't as bad as I thought, and may not be all right torso. Will try to verify.

EDIT: Yes, verified and original post updated.

Edited by Heavy Money, 11 September 2021 - 08:19 PM.


#4 Gagis

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Posted 11 September 2021 - 10:23 AM

View PostHeavy Money, on 11 September 2021 - 10:11 AM, said:

I'm being told that the Dorsal Gun hitbox isn't as bad as I thought, and may not be all right torso. Will try to verify.

It initially was all CT which made the mech explode when someone looked at it funny, It gained thin slivers of each ST on a later patch to make this a bit less bad.

#5 Makerie

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Posted 11 September 2021 - 06:55 PM

This is a very well written review and it nailed many of the issues on the MAD II. My experience has been pretty much the same: too easy to get hit, too weak for a 100t; more like a very fat heavy. Looking around, there's not many MAD II on the battlefield compared to the established IS assaults. Hopefully the mech will be given another revised quirks.

Thank you for the detailed post.

#6 eminus

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Posted 11 September 2021 - 08:35 PM

No one should try to create a in-depth review of the Nightstar, that would make you crazy LOL

#7 Heavy Money

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Posted 11 September 2021 - 09:52 PM

View Posteminus, on 11 September 2021 - 08:35 PM, said:

No one should try to create a in-depth review of the Nightstar, that would make you crazy LOL


Luckily it looks like its already got some love coming this patch!

#8 Valdarion Silarius

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Posted 11 September 2021 - 10:01 PM

Holy TL:DR batman. But yes on a more serious note I would like to see the Marauder II be more effective.

#9 Teenage Mutant Ninja Urbie

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Posted 13 September 2021 - 12:34 PM

just a point on the MAD-4HP:

the srm-build is really, really good. granted, in QP it is highly situational, but what isn't?
you fire 4xsrm6a on one side, and then the 4xsrm6a on the other.
many mechs just cease to exist after that.
whatever still lives won't after the next salvo, which is ready in 3,2,1 ..

yes, it is slow as f*ck and shortranged, but oh boy, does it hurt in the right circumstances. Posted Image

Edited by Teenage Mutant Ninja Urbie, 13 September 2021 - 12:35 PM.


#10 Heavy Money

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Posted 13 September 2021 - 01:52 PM

View PostTeenage Mutant Ninja Urbie, on 13 September 2021 - 12:34 PM, said:

just a point on the MAD-4HP:

the srm-build is really, really good. granted, in QP it is highly situational, but what isn't?
you fire 4xsrm6a on one side, and then the 4xsrm6a on the other.
many mechs just cease to exist after that.
whatever still lives won't after the next salvo, which is ready in 3,2,1 ..

yes, it is slow as f*ck and shortranged, but oh boy, does it hurt in the right circumstances. Posted Image


Is it really though? Compare it to a dual heavy gauss+ML or MPL buiild:
  • It has less range and a hard range cutoff
  • It has lower alpha when you consider it is split into two staggered fire groups (43+43 vs ~75-80ish)
  • It has no PPFLD element due to missile spread
  • It heatcaps sooner
  • It can't keep firing a considerable amount of its damage despite heatcap like gauss can
  • It carries less damage worth of ammo (roughly speaking, its a fuzzy comparison because missile spread and lasers)
  • It has higher dps on paper, but when you factor in damage spread and missed opportunities due to range, it will have less output over time in practice except in absolutely ideal conditions. The dps advantages it has are negated if the other build gets even a single extra volley off due to range or heat cap.
  • You can go faster while running it, but you could also drop firepower off the other builds for speed and still generally be better off.
You can do a similar comparison to Atlas brawl builds using like UAC20+SRMs+MLs and those will have similar dps, less of these drawbacks, and the extra toughness of an Atlas.



Now, I'm not saying it can't kill things if you get within range at all. I've played it and it totally can. But is it good compared to the competition? And do we call a build 'good' if the area its effective in is so narrow that it can almost never be brought to bear properly? It does not seem to measure up in an on paper comparison. And its lack of representation on the battlefield compared to these other options suggests people haven't gotten it to measure up in practice either. The idea of it being further ahead in damage potential than the others in return for being even more restricted on where it can deal that damage is fine, but its just not enough ahead on that damage potential.

Edited by Heavy Money, 13 September 2021 - 01:55 PM.


#11 Krucilatoz

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Posted 13 September 2021 - 09:05 PM

Nice article bro Posted Image
This should be help a lot for new player who purchased the Marauder II.

I got my MAD-II from MW5 pre-order bonus, play about 10 - 20 games, fiddling their configuration, then dispose them Posted Image
It's true that the MAD-II lack of proper "positioning" (in term of what makes this mech appealing to player),
atlas has tankiness, anni has firepower, fafnir has stealth.
Another factor is the MAD-II absolutely bullet-magnet, enemy prefer this mech rather than atlas for its bigger size even from 600m+ thus easily to destroy side torso to make it losing half of fighting capability.

I even considered writing to PGI, instead of displaying "Division X" on mech store, put some warning sticker informative-brochure with words such as "Warning, bullet magnet, not for new player".
That local car dealer near my house did something like that Posted Image

#12 Teenage Mutant Ninja Urbie

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Posted 14 September 2021 - 03:09 AM

View PostHeavy Money, on 13 September 2021 - 01:52 PM, said:


Is it really though? Compare it to a dual heavy gauss+ML or MPL buiild:
  • It has less range and a hard range cutoff
  • It has lower alpha when you consider it is split into two staggered fire groups (43+43 vs ~75-80ish)
  • It has no PPFLD element due to missile spread
  • It heatcaps sooner
  • It can't keep firing a considerable amount of its damage despite heatcap like gauss can
  • It carries less damage worth of ammo (roughly speaking, its a fuzzy comparison because missile spread and lasers)
  • It has higher dps on paper, but when you factor in damage spread and missed opportunities due to range, it will have less output over time in practice except in absolutely ideal conditions. The dps advantages it has are negated if the other build gets even a single extra volley off due to range or heat cap.
  • You can go faster while running it, but you could also drop firepower off the other builds for speed and still generally be better off.
You can do a similar comparison to Atlas brawl builds using like UAC20+SRMs+MLs and those will have similar dps, less of these drawbacks, and the extra toughness of an Atlas.











Now, I'm not saying it can't kill things if you get within range at all. I've played it and it totally can. But is it good compared to the competition? And do we call a build 'good' if the area its effective in is so narrow that it can almost never be brought to bear properly? It does not seem to measure up in an on paper comparison. And its lack of representation on the battlefield compared to these other options suggests people haven't gotten it to measure up in practice either. The idea of it being further ahead in damage potential than the others in return for being even more restricted on where it can deal that damage is fine, but its just not enough ahead on that damage potential.



you're comparing apples and oranges.
the hvy.gauss+medlasers mechs are more of a scalpel, where the srm-MAD is a bludgeon;

with the h.gauss, you (hopefully) use the h.gauss to inflict damage onto -1- hitzone, and you're f*cked if you miss it/hit something else. or if your opponent twists in the right/wrong moment.
also you're staring quite a while for the medlasers to finish their burn.
otoh you have range. a lot of range.

the mad is a true-srm-brawler; you don't care exactly where the srm hit, as long as they hit, and then you turn right after clicking them (or you click meanwhile you twist, if you're used to it). though aiming still helps a lot, you really brute-force your way through the enemy armor everywhere. and you definitely have the means to do so.
if you're in range, that is.

none of them is 'better', it's two very different playstyles, and both are good in their own set of conditions.




*onto modes
I've played both the hvy.gauss' and he srm-MAD a fair number of times, and I'd agree that in QP I too would prefer the gauss-mech. simply because of higher distance, less people will see me and single me out from 300-500mtrs than in an srm-MAD 50mtrs away, and so on.
but that's personal preference, you can wreck face with the srm-mad very well in QP. it's just not the 'safest' route. but a lot of fun non the less Posted Image

where the srm-mad really shines is either solaris-mode on the right map, or, and here's the real gem, in FP.
you know the map, you know the conditions, and you know the people you're dropping with (and often those you drop against).
there's some excellent maps&modes in FP for it, and with the right crew, you can make it work on any map&mode on top. never tried to make it work on old-polar, but on new-polar in fw.. sounds tempting Posted Image

Edited by Teenage Mutant Ninja Urbie, 14 September 2021 - 07:39 AM.


#13 TELEFORCE

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Posted 14 September 2021 - 06:30 AM

I've been having fun playing with the MAD-4HP lately. I'm running a standard engine with 2x HPPC, 2x medium lasers, and all the rocket launchers I can fit on it. I just wish it had more missile hardpoints so I could match the canon RL loadout, but as it is it has intense burst damage which will ruin anyone's day. When a good target is presented, I chain-fire my rockets at it until I'm out of rockets or the target is dead. Once the rockets are gone, the HPPCs keep the 'mech relevant with 30 PPFLD. The lasers are nice for touching fast 'mechs for those kill assist points. I still equip 3 jump jets for the mobility and to help me spread damage from the torso to the legs. Very rare that I get under 400 damage in a game with this thing!

Edited by TELEFORCE, 14 September 2021 - 06:31 AM.


#14 Heavy Money

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Posted 14 September 2021 - 11:43 AM

View PostTeenage Mutant Ninja Urbie, on 14 September 2021 - 03:09 AM, said:


you're comparing apples and oranges.
the hvy.gauss+medlasers mechs are more of a scalpel, where the srm-MAD is a bludgeon;

with the h.gauss, you (hopefully) use the h.gauss to inflict damage onto -1- hitzone, and you're f*cked if you miss it/hit something else. or if your opponent twists in the right/wrong moment.
also you're staring quite a while for the medlasers to finish their burn.
otoh you have range. a lot of range.


No.

Pinpoint damage is not a penalty. Splitting your damage over multiple hitboxes due to missile spread is not somehow better than splitting it due to different pinpoint volleys. At least with pinpoint, you have a chance to land all your shots in the same place. With missiles, you can have perfect aim and still not keep it all on the same area. You're also vulnerable to twisting. You will often be f*cked even if you don't miss. The 4HP isn't doing so much more damage as to make up for this. You would be correct if the hgauss was significantly lower damage output, but its not, all things considered.

Laser burn can be an issue, but not much of one with the usual med pulse. And the 4HP having to fire two separate alphas cancels out any advantage it'd have. You're either staring and waiting to fire for a similar duration, or you're staggering them even further apart which means more twist back and even more damage spreading.


View PostTeenage Mutant Ninja Urbie, on 14 September 2021 - 03:09 AM, said:

the mad is a true-srm-brawler; you don't care exactly where the srm hit, as long as they hit, and then you turn right after clicking them (or you click meanwhile you twist, if you're used to it). though aiming still helps a lot, you really brute-force your way through the enemy armor everywhere. and you definitely have the means to do so.
if you're in range, that is.

none of them is 'better', it's two very different playstyles, and both are good in their own set of conditions.


What you are describing is how the relationship is supposed to work, and how it works for many lower tonnage mechs. My point is that it doesn't actually work out like this in this case because the SRM brawler's actual damage output isn't that much higher. Between spread and heatcap, most of the on-paper advantage in dps is negated (let alone range.) Spreading damage everywhere is a downside. Its not killing them faster because you sandblasted everything open at once, its killing them slower. The effective dps is not enough higher to justify this downside, which was my original complaint, and which is proven out by which sorts of brawlers are actually getting played.

#15 Teenage Mutant Ninja Urbie

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Posted 14 September 2021 - 12:20 PM

View PostHeavy Money, on 14 September 2021 - 11:43 AM, said:


No.

Pinpoint damage is not a penalty. Splitting your damage over multiple hitboxes due to missile spread is not somehow better than splitting it due to different pinpoint volleys. At least with pinpoint, you have a chance to land all your shots in the same place. With missiles, you can have perfect aim and still not keep it all on the same area. You're also vulnerable to twisting. You will often be f*cked even if you don't miss. The 4HP isn't doing so much more damage as to make up for this. You would be correct if the hgauss was significantly lower damage output, but its not, all things considered.

Laser burn can be an issue, but not much of one with the usual med pulse. And the 4HP having to fire two separate alphas cancels out any advantage it'd have. You're either staring and waiting to fire for a similar duration, or you're staggering them even further apart which means more twist back and even more damage spreading.




What you are describing is how the relationship is supposed to work, and how it works for many lower tonnage mechs. My point is that it doesn't actually work out like this in this case because the SRM brawler's actual damage output isn't that much higher. Between spread and heatcap, most of the on-paper advantage in dps is negated (let alone range.) Spreading damage everywhere is a downside. Its not killing them faster because you sandblasted everything open at once, its killing them slower. The effective dps is not enough higher to justify this downside, which was my original complaint, and which is proven out by which sorts of brawlers are actually getting played.


If you say and think so, that's fine. I ran my usual testbed (tourmaline, to the atlas, then counterclockwise) just a few hours ago with a 0-skillpoint MAR, and it cores & kills everything after the atlas in 2 volleys. which are done in 4? seconds. at max-distance. the atlas is the ONLY mech where you have to watch the heatcap, btw, it runs quite cold, even without any skillpoints into anything.
the good thing here is: you can try it yourself. you know, I'm not "selling" the MAR, there is no point in making up things, and if you don't like it, that's fine.
I'm just pointing out, to others then, that your review is kinda flawed when it comes to the srm-MAR. again: if you don't wanna hear/try it: totally fine.
aaand I'm done here ;)

#16 Heavy Money

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Posted 14 September 2021 - 01:36 PM

View PostTeenage Mutant Ninja Urbie, on 14 September 2021 - 12:20 PM, said:


If you say and think so, that's fine. I ran my usual testbed (tourmaline, to the atlas, then counterclockwise) just a few hours ago with a 0-skillpoint MAR, and it cores & kills everything after the atlas in 2 volleys. which are done in 4? seconds. at max-distance. the atlas is the ONLY mech where you have to watch the heatcap, btw, it runs quite cold, even without any skillpoints into anything.
the good thing here is: you can try it yourself. you know, I'm not "selling" the MAR, there is no point in making up things, and if you don't like it, that's fine.
I'm just pointing out, to others then, that your review is kinda flawed when it comes to the srm-MAR. again: if you don't wanna hear/try it: totally fine.
aaand I'm done here Posted Image


Uh, are you suggesting that testing ground performance is indicative of anything? Even if it is, its not supporting any point about the actual problem I'm talking about.

The SRMa 4HP is doing 86dmg+spread. Its split between 2 fire groups which = even more spread and probably face time.
The HGR+MPL Fafnir is doing 80dmg, 50 of which is pinpoint, and 30 is low burn duration. It can also inflict meaningful damage from significantly further away, and keep firing its main weapons despite heatcap.

There is zero upside to spreading damage when it comes to actually trying to kill a target.

The idea of the missile build is that it has so much more damage output that it overcomes the downsides of spreading damage, staggered alpha, range, ammo, heat, etc through raw firepower. The question then is, does it?

It does have more DPS on paper. And it can, of course, avoid spreading against some very large mechs if it can get the perfect situation of point black shots and the target doesn't twist. (The Fafnir also ganks anything in seconds given ideal circumstances, and its ideal is much easier to achieve.)

Is it enough more DPS to outweigh the other disadvantages? Clearly not, because it isn't getting used, while the Fafnir build is one of the top brawlers in the game. And if you break down the numbers on paper with these considerations, its clearly not going to be enough in theory either. (And let's not even get into Atlas-S builds, which also use SRMs with similar DPS while having higher alpha, avoiding stagger fire, and way more durability).

Pointing out that it does a lot of damage in ideal conditions is arguing about the wrong issue. I agreed with you on that point already, and even said it has high damage output in the initial review section. I'm arguing that, in practice, its dps fails to compensate for its other downsides, which explains why we don't see this mech or build more often even though we should expect it to be well represented as the big SRM brawler.

Edited by Heavy Money, 14 September 2021 - 01:40 PM.


#17 LordNothing

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Posted 17 September 2021 - 05:44 PM

View PostHeavy Money, on 11 September 2021 - 10:11 AM, said:

I'm being told that the Dorsal Gun hitbox isn't as bad as I thought, and may not be all right torso. Will try to verify.

EDIT: Yes, verified and original post updated.


its only bad if you put an hgauss in there. it explodes every single match. put an lb10,20 or uac10,20 or a rac5 in there and its fine. i figure people really dont want to get hit by an hgauss. maybe also avoid hill humping if you use it at anything but extreme range (parhaps with std/light gauss).

Edited by LordNothing, 17 September 2021 - 05:47 PM.


#18 caravann

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Posted 17 September 2021 - 10:40 PM

Mad2 serve a support role in a 100ton
, for a game with only 100tons.

It is an experimental mech who
was designed because of
the doctrine about to kill a mech
you send in an even bigger.

Mad2 surprisingly plays like a mad
but with higher armor rating.

It is a scouting mech since it has
jump-jets and stealth, armor.,ECM.

It makes it a supportive mech because of this.

The Large pulse laser is the best IS laser
with +1 damage over PPC and stealth capable.

Some few chosen ones are better than mad2
Most mechs do not perform that much better
Than above 70 damage alphas strikes

Many ballistics have features who makes mad2 worse
Example is that not a single ballistic has a range limit
While PPC who is a gauss projectile gun of particles can't


#19 John Bronco

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Posted 18 September 2021 - 01:23 AM

Still one of the worst mechs in the game.

I don't know what Cauldron is afraid of on this piece of ****.

#20 Moldur

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Posted 18 September 2021 - 06:19 AM

Thanks for the run down. I have 3 Mad-IIs i bought right before i stopped playing when they released that idk what to do with. This review does a good job of comparison to other assaults and the lack of parity in the Mad-II wrt quirks.





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