The misconception of underpowered NC weapons

Discussion in 'PlanetSide 2 Gameplay Discussion' started by Xiphos, Dec 27, 2012.

  1. Xiphos

    I've spent a lot of time playing both as TR and NC, as well as time analyzing weapon stats and what they really mean. I believe that no significant and obvious imbalance exists. Instead, I think that the myth of NC infantry weapons being underpowered stems from a series of misunderstandings and incorrect assumptions.

    Let me clarify a few important points

    1) Weapons are made for different purposes and their stats reflect that. Forget simplistic (and often incorrect) generalizations such as "NC is the close range combat faction". Looking at the default NC weapons, they are clearly made for operating at longer ranges than the default TR and most default VS weapons. A player that tries out all three factions briefly will notice that the NC weapons handle differently and will also likely perform worse when he tries to use them in the same manner. Then add the fact that mid range weapons really need attachments before they start performing well and one can see how a new player might get the wrong impression that NC weapons are significantly worse.

    2) The more sophisticated players will take interest in the PS2 weapon data sheet and notice how NC weapons are seemingly worse in several important categories, for example in recoil or dps. A superficial look at the numbers can be misleading though. It takes some time to really understand what the numbers mean.

    NOTE: I'm only comparing the EM6 to the CARV for educational purposes. I don't mean to imply that they are supposed to be similar, counterparts or balanced with each other or anything like that. I just have to take numbers from somewhere.

    For example, recoil is only recoil per shot. To understand how difficult a weapon is to control during auto fire we need to calculate the recoil/sec. If we do this we find out that the EM6 has a recoil of 0.45 but a recoil/sec of 4.5, whereas the CARV has a recoil of 0.4 but recoil/sec of 5. In reality there's also a recoil multiplier applied to the first shot.

    Likewise with COF bloom. EM6 has a COF bloom of 0.06 per shot but a COF bloom/sec of 0.6. The CARV has a COF bloom of 0.05 per shot but a COF bloom/sec of 0.625.

    What about TTK? This is another number that can easily mislead a person. You cannot simply calculate TTK from DPS. This is an extremely common mistake, and then there's also damage drop over distance, bullet speed, ammo type, initial COF and COF bloom that factor into TTK under real conditions. Let's limit ourselves to TTK at 0m though. DPS is derived from damage per shot and refire time. However, the first shot in a burst is not subject to any delay. The correct way to calculate TTK is to count the number of bullets required to kill, then subtract one, then multiply by refire time.

    The EM6 has a damage of 167 per shot and a dps of 1670, the CARV a damage of 143 per shot and a dps of 1787.5. When we look at the TTK of the EM6, it's actually 0.5 seconds. CARV TTK is 0.48 seconds.

    In closing, I haven't really seen anything that suggests that NC infantry weapons as a whole are significantly underpowered. The perception that they are noticably underpowered can easily be explained by other things, some of which I have described here. There may be a few weapons for every faction that are underperforming but these are individual cases and generalizing would be wrong. The Jackhammer is for example is clearly worse than other shotguns.
    • Up x 7
  2. Ronaldspiers

    You didn't compare the EM6 to the VS weapons which are significntly better.

    The NC weapons have a higher learning curve and I think a good NC player should win a lot of fight beacuse of the higher damage, but in general the VS/TR weapons take less effort to use for the same/better outcome a good NC player would be able to produce.
  3. PoisonedAl

    I've played a bit of NC and a few things become clear. If you burst fire and aim down a little to compensate for the, NC guns own. Luckily for the other two factions, the NC seems to attract the younger players more used to hit scan weaponry and never think to do this. They try to play the game like CoD and get frustrated when it doesn't work. Then scream obscenities over voice chat.
    • Up x 7
  4. Xiphos

    The point was not to compare weapons but to explain what certain numbers really mean.

    If I didn't pull the numbers from actual weapons and instead made up some arbitrarily then people would complain that my explanations have no connection to how things really are in game.
    • Up x 1
  5. Ronaldspiers

    Oh right, then sorry I misunderstood your post, its too early to be thinking :p
  6. Xiphos

    By the way, it is still possible that one faction's infantry weapons are too good or too weak.

    My post is really just there to dispel the common misconceptions that keep appearing on the forums, such as "NC have much higher recoil and lower dps and are totally underpowered for this reason" or "The CARV is a killer but I can't kill anybody with the Gauss Saw".

    If an imbalance exists, then it is not one that is apparent from the numbers. It could for example be that weapons that have lower recoil but lower dps are overall more effective. The numbers cannot tell us if that tradeoff is a favorable one or not. Lot of practice in game may give us a clue, but the only way to know for sure would be large scale statistics collected by SOE.
    • Up x 1
  7. Sabzi

    I am VS and I wholeheartedly agree with this.
    That's why I like NC guns more(also the sound). I like to think that I am a good player and I often feel I can't do more with VS guns. They are easy to master, but nowhere to go from that point. NC weapons have a higher skill ceiling in my opinion and I often produce better results with them. But I always was a sci fi guy, loved the PAC hover tank in 2142 AND spent too many SC and cert to my VS character anyway to switch :(.

    OFF: Is it only me who think Pandora+slug>Eidolon?
  8. Ronaldspiers

    Oh right I see, in that case NC are underpowered and need god mode. :p
  9. phreec

    That's exactly the problem.

    Most base attacks require us to get up close and push the enemies back and that's where our starter guns fall short compared to other factions default arsenal. Medium range weapons wont do us much good when assaulting biolabs or pursuing the cap points in tech plants and amp stations.

    SOE should equip each faction with both a competent CQC and a longer range weapon from the beginning. They successfully added versatile all-rounders as starter guns for TR and VS but got it completely wrong for the NC. I mean seriously, just compare the Gauss SAW with T9 CARV/Orion and you'll see it's nowhere as versatile or deadly in CQC as it should've been as a starter weapon. Neither do many of the other NC default weapons do better in CQC as their VS and TR counterparts, especially since RoF is king at those ranges.

    That's our biggest handicap from the get-go and scares our newcomers away in a game where population plays a major role in achieving victory.
  10. 13lackCats

    The NC weapon inferiority myth was a populist campaign engineered by NC faction fanatics.

    It was transparent from the start, mostly exposed by the vernacular.
    • Up x 2
  11. Xiphos

    It's not a problem. NC has weapons made for close combat as well.

    My personal experience is that mid range weapons are underappreciated.
  12. phreec

    But it is a problem when it scares away the population. Yes we do have good CQC sidegrades but they cost certs or money. A newcomer is much better off just switching over to TR or VS than spend dozens of hours or real money just unlocking a decent CQC gun so they can get to the same level as TR/VS begin at.

    I pretty much only use the Gauss Rifle (2,500+ kills so far) even though I got a fully certed GR-22 and even then it's barely better than the TR default rifle for CQC. I realize the factions are supposed to have some sort of character and unique traits but the starter weapons should've still been relatively equal, which they aren't.

    Another downside to the NC's starter weapons being so medium range oriented is that their S variants, the only ones that can attach grenade launchers below them, are noticeably less versatile than other factions GL rifles or carbines. Currently there's no option for NC to pick a CQC weapon with a GL like the TRAC-5 S, only the now even slower firing Gauss Compact S. :/
    • Up x 1
  13. Dr. Allcome

    I agree, it's not a problem. Sooner or later the weapons either prove to be balanced or all NC will just switch over to VS or TR. We could then simply remove the NC. Problem solved, no more whining.

    As someone who has played the other faction a lot, you should always include screenshots of your weapon stats pages. This way you can easily show people that the weapons are balanced without the need of arguing about theoretical TTK values. Just put the hard facts on the table.
    • Up x 1
  14. Deavonere

    There is a flaw in your reasoning. I've been pointing that out in beta, but unfortunately it was deleted. I wrote about completely unbalanced math model for Sustained damage.

    Sustained damage is actually what all of you guys should consider. There is almost never a situation where all your bullets hit the target. Instead you can analyse how the Sustained damage would look like with different accuracy percentage.

    The more you sustain your fire, the more you can deal, but decreasing accuracy with combination of RoF will give you some distracting thoughts. I remember that I even gave detailed examples that showed how much TR and VS are better with sustained damage. I remember that at some point (same accuracy) you could deal almost twice the damage NC does as TR or VS. That myth with damage drop off for VS also means almost nothing, with much better accuracy VS still owns NC and probably even TR.

    If one day I'm going to get mad at all those a#@holes trying to tell me that NC LMG's are fine, I'm going to prepare full graphs to demonstrate how does this work. I don't think It will mean a thing' because last time some TR told me that math analysis is worthless and he don't accept it. So I felt that I've only wasted my time.

    also: guys that thought that high damage, low RoF and low accuracy will be a good combination for this game must have been #$%^#$% geniuses.

    If you don't believe me. Try this:
    Assume accuracy for 30% and see what will be TTK for every faction. You can also experiment with different accuracy percentage, and then realise that this was only RoF you considered (we assumed that we all have same accuracy which is not true). NC guns are much more inaccurate, so the TTK for NC should be considered with lower average accuracy.

    We can of course burst, but that also means we have much much longer TTK.
  15. Xiphos

    I'm already aware of what you're saying but I don't agree with your conclusion.

    Consider the CARV and EM6. The CARV has better sustained dps, the EM6 has higher damage per shot. TTK of 0.48 vs TTK of 0.50 as shown earlier, at least when all bullets hit.

    At a range where full auto mode is most effective but not all bullets land, the weapon with better sustained dps will pull ahead. At a range where full auto isn't effective anymore and one must fire in short bursts, the weapon with high bullet damage will pull ahead. In other words, these weapons are made to be used in different ways and at different ranges.

    It is also incorrect to assume a 30% miss chance for both because the EM6 is more accurate and easy to control, therefore it will miss less often.

    Your idea that NC weapons have low accuracy is one of the common misconceptions by the way. Take a look at recoil/sec, bloom/sec, ADS COF values.
    • Up x 2
  16. Flarestar

    Said it before, probably will say it again. The problem is not that the weapons aren't balanced, the problem is that the character classes for each faction are identical. There are always two equations for balance - offense and defense. When you make offense variable, but leave defense static, you end up with a balance problem.
    • Up x 1
  17. hellin

    The first thing you notice is that you are much gab ... You just gave the answer of "I do not know why ... but their weapons are clearly better." Or "I love NC guns more than VS ... but I'm so *** ... that I play for the other faction ...".

    Do you think that in the file that all take for granted all that's obvious to describe? Excuse me, but where there is specified accuracy? Or take the same AC-X11 (which I will not leave alone), which is the lowest fly speed among all of the bullet rifles and with the highest damage ... AC-X11 use explosive bolts? Incidentally, I note that when I start to shoot out of it at the enemy he can turn around and shoot me ... leisurely from the fact that the accuracy of weapons is bad, in addition to a strong recoil (although if the speed of a bullet low why such a strong recoil?). Are you sure you have studied physics at school? I do not want to offend you so I will not say what I think about you. But keep in mind that nothing good.
  18. Steppa

    I used to be an NC, but then I took an arrow in the knee.
    • Up x 1
  19. Steppa

    Either learn English or keep to being snarky in your native tongue.
    • Up x 3
  20. Xiphos

    Are you talking about the PS2 weapon data sheet? I use the term "accuracy" to indicate "cone of fire" (abbreviated COF) so people can actually understand what I'm saying (I might add that I'm not sure if I even understand you)..

    The COF values in the spreadsheet indicate how tight the cone of fire is. Bullets will travel along a random trajectory within the cone of fire. Very low COF values mean the bullet will hit almost exactly where you're aiming.

    If you keep firing the cone of fire will widen and bullets will land further from where you're actually aiming.
    • Up x 1