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Weapon types

A very rough overview of weapon types and their positive and negative aspects.

StatBallisticsRailgunPulse CannonPlasma AcceleratorLaser Cannon
Mass (-)⬜⬛⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬛⬛⬜⬛⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬛⬛
Energy draw (-)⬜⬛⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬜⬛⬜⬜⬜⬜⬛
Heat output (-)⬜⬛⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬛⬛⬜⬜⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬜⬛⬜⬜⬛⬛⬛
Ammo (-)⬜⬜⬜⬛⬛⬜⬜⬛⬛⬛⬜⬛⬛⬛⬛⬜⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛
Damage - hull (+)⬜⬜⬜⬜⬛⬜⬜⬜⬛⬛⬜⬜⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬛⬛
Damage - component (+)⬜⬜⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬛⬛⬜⬛⬛⬛⬛
Damage - shield (+)⬜⬛⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜⬛⬛⬛
Damage - heat (+)⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛⬜⬛⬛⬛⬛⬜⬛⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜⬛⬛
Rate of fire (+)⬜⬜⬜⬜⬛⬜⬜⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬛⬛⬜⬜⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬛⬛
Speed of projectile (+)⬜⬜⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬜⬛⬜⬜⬜⬛⬛⬜⬛⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜
Damage falloff (-)⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛⬜⬛⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬛⬛⬜⬜⬛⬛⬛
Effective range (+)⬜⬜⬜⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬜⬛⬜⬜⬜⬛⬛⬜⬛⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬜⬛
Accuracy (+)⬜⬜⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬛⬛⬜⬜⬛⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬜⬛
Sizes availableS1-S4S2-S6S1-S3S3-S6S2-S6
  • Mass: how heavy the weapon is, how dense. Affects gimballing speed, amount of vibrations, hence effective range and accuracy. A downside in general, but with some upsides, the larger the worst.

  • Energy draw: how much energy it draws from the capacitors/reactor. The higher, the worse.

  • Heat output: how much of the energy goes into head instead of damage. A downside.

  • Ammo: how much room it needs for ammo storage, and how much the ammo masses. Laser has none (although there are bomb pumped lasers and lasers that use up gases), plasma needs little. Downside.

  • Damage: how much damage each shot deals. Upside, the more the better.

    • Hull: damage dealt to the hull and armour of the ship.
    • Component: damage dealt to components. (Railgun projectiles go through quite straight compared to a slower bullet that shrapnells. Plasma spreads and heats stuff up, laser heats but slower)
    • Shields: damage dealt to shields. (I have some ideas about how shields could work)
    • Heat: how much extra heat it dumps on the heat management system of the target. Can cause general equipment and personell damage and emergency shutdown of systems.
  • Rate of fire: how fast shots follow each other. (Lasers have medium due to cooling requirements)

  • Speed of projectile: how fast the projectile is. Affects aiming and damage as well. Laser has practically infinite speed. (Upside, with some drawbacks)

  • Damage falloff: does the damage decreases with range? Projectiles won't slow down at all in vacuum, plasma dissipates, laser looses coherence (The larger the laser, the better this could be). Downside.

  • Effective range: incorporates damage falloff and other factors, such as accuracy and how effective gimballing can be due to weapon structure and mass. Upside.

  • Accuracy: how accurate that type of gun generally is. Guns have inherent spread, railguns improve upon that, plasma has an inherent chaotic nature. Lasers lase 😛 Upside.

  • Complexity: not counted as a positive or negative, since not directly affects combat. How complex it is to maintain the type of weapon. Guns are pretty simple, and been around for more one and a half milenia, so they are pretty polished. Railguns as well, but they have a more elaborate structure, plasma guns even moreso with finicky containment fields and such. Lasers are a middle ground.

  • Price: not counted as a positive or negative, since not directly affects combat. How expensive it is. Complexity has a say in it.

  • Sizes available: not counted as a positive or negative, since not directly affects combat. What size classes the weapon type is available at. Guns have an upper ceiling, railguns and lasers have a lower.