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How do I know if a weapon is good or bad?


(PSN)raz-jj

Question

I realise PRIME versions of a weapon are almost always better than their counterparts, but not all weapons have prime counterpars, in fact most of them don't.

So my question is: how do I actually compare a weapon to another one to see which one is better? Like, how do I pick the best sniper rifle?

Numbers don't really tell me much, because they always look so low compared to the actual damage.

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Primed are not always better - Corinth Prime and Vectis Prime are two example that not everyone appreciates.

Weapons tend to be OP for getting things dead, so a lot depends on tactics, by which I mean:

Mission + Enemy >> Warframe + Weaponset + Companion choice

For Example, for point-defense missions you might use Frost or Khora depending on the enemy. Frost might use an Ogris to prevent approach while Khora like Ignis to fire up those caught in her dome.

  • It's really not a matter of good or bad, but of selecting these types of pairings.
  • I still use a Tigris Prime for my Fatal Teleport Ash if I'm running the Index
  • Arbitration Defense gets a Nekros Prime with Reaper Prime and (any) gun.
  • If I carry a sniper, my secondary is the Nukor

So how do I read specs on weapons - look at EVERYTHING

  • Read the description so you understand what this Bear-antler with dual flash suppressors actually does. Understand alt fire modes and look at alternate mods for the weapon.
  • Look at base damage, crit (above 15% or nvm) status (above 20% or nvm), remember to multiply damage by rate of fire.
  • Compare the RoF to the Mag size and reload time (non-prime Baza is a good example of a problem there)

It helps to look at one weapon type at a time - comparing daggers or sniping pistols or whatever - decide what type of weapon you need/want, then compare with your "use-case" in mind.

There, I've said WAY too much - Cheers! 🍺

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Well, i personally think there are "two kinds" of weapons in warframe.

The first one, you use them, you feel good about them, then you mod them the best to your knowledge and abilities. There are no shortcut to this kind of weapons, you just have to use them and fell in love with them.

The second type, are the ones that you see on streamer/youtuber or forum as the most meta build, then you copy the build and use them they way they're "supposed to be used".

Either way, you can mostly play warframe the way you want to. There's no definite right or wrong.

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3 hours ago, (PSN)raz-jj said:

Numbers don't really tell me much, because they always look so low compared to the actual damage.

Personally, if it makes me giggle like a fool from time to time, it's a good weapon. 😛

If you're looking for a preview though and you don't have a feel for numbers, it's tough.  The advice upthread about looking at MR is decent, although it guaranteed to steer you totally wrong occasionally.  Other than that, you can look at forum discussions and  videos to get an idea of the gameplay and other people's opinions.  For the latter, TacticalPotato is somebody I might recommend, as he gives a good overview and isn't a precious dps snob. 

But really, I think the ultimate answer is to start getting more comfortable looking at weapon stats.

 

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While not a crutch to rely on in the long run, this site is somewhat-decent quick-check to see how other players feel about a weapon:

https://overframe.gg/tier-list/primary-weapons/

It does not address Melee Stances (which IMO, is more important than the weapon itself), and will not help much once you are rolling in resources and just building weapons to raise your MR.  However, if you are still resource-strapped and looking to build yourself some tools that will carry you through the game, or if you just can't decide whether/where you should invest that precious Blue Potato, then it can be quite useful.

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I usually look at the Crit stats, status chance and how the damage types are weighted. 

Best sniper right now is pretty much preference/purpose.

Some people like the Vectis, some like the Lanka. Rubico Prime is the easiest to use as it's just pewpewpew, Vectis has its 1 or 2 shot magazine, and Lanka has its charge up. All 3 can get the job done and it's just down to how you like to sniper.

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There is defiantly people who have invested more time into the number than me but I will say this. Best weapon does not equal Best weapon for you. To keep with the sniper rifle example, I prefer the Rubico while other like Vectis Prime. I can sustain DPS over a couple of shot easier than a single shot of the Vectis. I also have a riven I capitalize on. Play style has a huge effect on how sustainable a weapon will be for you to play with.

Taking play style out of the mix you can use the testing rooms in the relays. It not too hard to unlock them. The correct mods can make or break a weapon. Unfortunately that means some weapons (Even frames) don't show their true colors until they have a potato and some forma in them. Make sure you play to a strength of the weapon. Soma isn't that great at quick damage but if built for slash is crazy.

I will also add in you can look at riven displacement. It not a great way but they lower the number the more it is used. It has to be good at something to be getting lowered. This will help find the metas but there is still plenty of diamonds in the rough people are over looking.

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Generally speaking you know by using them. That's why mastery works the way it does as it is trying to drive you into trying out every possible weapon these is.

I stuck with the same old weapons and frames for a couple of years but recently I have been trying out anything I can get my hands on. I've found that a lot of weapons are just truly awful (solo player so I have to level them the "proper" way) but I have found some which are quite fun to use even if the damage is pretty awful until you have at least mastered them.

You can tell after the event if something is truly great... by what gets nerfed in the patch notes.

Your example of a sniper is a good one to explain why some weapons are deemed "good" by some players and not others. Rubico Prime is a pretty popular one but I prefer vanilla Vectis (even over the prime) as it is more fun. As it is a single mag breach loader (the prime variant is 2 per mag mag) it is great with Charged/Primed Chamber so every shot gets the damage increase bonus and it doesn't hide the scope when reloading. Is it a damage beast compared to Rubico Prime? No, but it is pretty fun to use as a sniper rifle. I wouldn't take it Eidolon hunting through.

Short of actually using the weapon in missions you can get a Simulacrum from Simaris and test builds in there.

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I go for stuff that's either dumb fun or easy to use.

Case in point: running around with the Bubonico in alt fire mode. I know you should just use alt fire to prime viral and do the real damage with primary, but casually running through mobs and point blanking them like a dumb bum (with Rhino and Iron Skin to negate stagger) is too funny.

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2 minutes ago, Shalath said:

Generally speaking you know by using them.

This. If when you point and click your enemy dies to your satisfaction, weapon good. If you point and click and the enemy is still standing after a length of time you feel is too long or the weapon feels unwieldy, weapon bad.

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All depends what you are looking for. Always play with the weapon before investing too much into them. Usually the rule of thumb is if it does lots of damage their is negative to the weapon, either huge recoil, low magazine, long reload, projectile flight speed, etc. Sometimes the numbers look nice but the usability may not cater to your play style. Also even tho a weapon may do less damage firerate can compensate a powerful slow weapon, especially for a hoard looter shooter.

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You can reliably tell how strong a weapon is by checking its MR requirement. The higher the number, the stronger the weapon. I'm pretty sure you can go to market and type your current MR into search. It should give you all of the weapons you have available at that level. Pick something you like and get the blueprints.
Other than that, you can go by weapon types (full auto rifles, bows, snipers, shotguns, swords, two handed swords, katanas, etc.)

Also, don't forget to mod your weapons because that's where you biggest power spike is. 

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You bring a sniper frame (Banshee, Nova, Harrow, depending on your skill level, Slow Nova is the easiest)to the levels you're comfortable with , this can be either as low as Hydron or it can be a mission with the Steel Path modifier.

If you want to throw it out after leveling it, it's a bad weapon.

But neither of them are meta to begin with and it depends on in which content you're planning to use it.

Imo. it's easier to stack up combos with the Vectis as there's practically no interruption between your shots. (also, it looks much better than the other sniper rifles if that's important to you, to me it is)

But both the Vectis, Rubico and Lanka are fine, i also liked the Komorex even though it could use an upgrade.

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On 2020-12-09 at 5:30 PM, Tiltskillet said:

Personally, if it makes me giggle like a fool from time to time, it's a good weapon. 😛

Today I found that if you mod the stug for cold damage, it becomes a snowball machine. Just in time for Christmas. Well, I was amused.

For the OP, some weapons are just different to what you like though, I have a phantasma, people say it's a beast that melts enemies. Me, I dislike beam fire, so I only use it for it's awesome alt fire mode (who can't appreciate grenades that explode into homing missiles?)

Bit out can be difficult to choose, I'm still in 2 minds about keeping the vulkar wraith or the rubico prime. Indecisive, me? 😌

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1 hour ago, (PSN)raz-jj said:

how do I actually compare a weapon to another one to see which one is better?

You compare the numbers. A rough estimate can be achieved from the required mastery rank. There are however 3 more factors to consider:

  • Hidden stats. Like the combo counter on sniper rifles, which varies wildly in between snipers, and elevates the weapon class above others.
  • Special mechanics. Like forced status effects.
  • Synergies (or anti-synergies). Like the Arum Spinosa being a heavy attack weapon with bad crit - crit being a required stat for heavy attacks.
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