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Indepth M2.0 Weapon Type Analysis And Tests


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Welcome to my monster topic of excessive weapon testing.
I hope you understand that I don't want to split up each and every weapon type into a separate topic because that would greatly flood the forum, wouldn't it? But if need be, I might as well do that. Because in the end, I'm not yet done with all tests I have in mind or have all melee weapons yet. When splitting up, I would use this topic then as a place to drop in the overall spreadsheets I made among other things. But spoilers help, right? right.

Here are some things I want to mention to save many accumulating lines:

First, I understand that Counter attacks are the same as Stealth attacks on a backend level, and therefor only deal damage once. However, since some counter attacks add more than one hit, it begs the question if we could get multiple instances of split-up damage for these hits as well. If only to keep our bonus damage from dropping. With that said, I don't need to repeat it each and every time it crops up. I still will note all irregularities in terms of hit counters and actual weapon animation hits.
Second; if this is a game about mobility, then why are there so many NON-heavy weapons which greatly impede movement, like Machetes, Dual Swords and Dual daggers? Overall, there needs to be a better balance between innate momentum (what the weapon does if you don't move) and how the addition of active moving directions are affecting this.

Third; I've outsourced some of this feedback into the very same subforum, where I talked about Slide Attack Movement and Overall Feedback. Still relevant, though.

Weapons in parentheses are the ones which I haven't tested because I do not own them. All Clan weapons will be tested soon though, researches are under way.


   Tested: Ceramic Dagger, Heat Dagger    (Dark Dagger)

THOUGHTS: I've never been a fan of Daggers, puncture damage to and fro, but the single-target only behaviour with lacking range made me frown upon them. Now I enjoy them more.


FEEDBACK: There are two impacts heard during stealth attack, but only one hit counter is added. Since it looks like slicing the throat open, you might want to keep it down to one hit sound. During the long slide of the 4th attack, stamina regenerates in between - is this intended? The ground finisher has a second "after-attack" when pulling out the dagger, which still can cause damage and add to hit counter BUT by the same token this takes away control of your character. I'd rather not have this pull-out-damage attack and instead being able to regain command over my movements. That, or greatly shorten animation time on both. We talk about Daggers here, which means they are meant to be fast in any way, shape or form. That said, sheathing animation is pretty slow. Is that only to keep all weapon-sheathes identical? If so, then please smoothen the animation, it looks a bit too edgy. Though I'd welcome smaller, faster weapons to be sheathed / drawn quicker. Enemies get teleported back to the proper position to start the counter attack animation if the are too close, which doesn't look very nice. Daggers do not only share the same idle animations as swords, they are also held the same way when moving. This is a tad unfitting for a dagger, it doesn't look and feel right.


WEAPON SPECIFIC: Ceramic Dagger cannot knock down enemies with ground slam. Is this intended? Considering Heat Dagger and probably Dark Dagger prohibit knockdown due to their guaranteed proc, Ceramic Dagger might have been overlooked. For everyone arguing a dagger cannot cause an aerial knockdown: Kestrel is a similar small weapon. And we Tenno can charge our melee weapons with our energy. Go figure. Groundslam mechanic = knockdown mechanic. This is the vibe we get from the game, and daggers break with it.


CONCLUSION: Despite the multihit now, Daggers remain unsatisfying in terms of raw damage output. Considering the difficulty (RNG) to get them, you'd expect a lot more of them, but there simply isn't. They don't even have the stereotypical crit. Their only real advantage would be spammable attacks thanks to low stamina costs... but since an empty stamina bar means nothing for attacks anyway, this perk is useless other than allowing for more block/parry joy. But then you wonder why it is a DAGGER of all things you're pulling those stunts with...

Dual Daggers

    Tested: Fang    (Ether Daggers, Fang Prime)

THOUGHTS: Other than daggers, I actually found great fun with Fang, thanks to the click-friendly animations with several hits per input and with the simply gorgeous movements. That made suffering through the single target attacks while leveling a lot more bearable. I thought Fang would shine the moment I realized everything could be ( is ) multhit... but not quite, because:


FEEDBACK: Fang does not stagger (dunno about Ether Daggers). Which makes it the only exception I've encountered so far, and a very disappointing one at that, but I do not report this as a bug because I don't know if this might be intended? If so... please reconsider. Stealth finisher strikes 3 times but only applies 1 hit counter. Counter attack only gives 1 hit counter, despite both weapons clearly piercing into the enemy. While it is okay for Dual Daggers to have the same ground slam and ground finisher als Dual swords, they use the same idle animation? That could get changed, this theme does not fit them. This means that neither single or dual daggers have their own idle animation.


CONCLUSION: While they do sport a bit more damage on the special moves than regular daggers, the inability to stagger makes them very lackluster, no matter how good they look and feel.



Dual Swords

    Tested: Dual Cleaver, Dual Ether, Dual Kamas, Dual Skana, Dual Zoren   (Dual Ichor, Nami Skyla)


THOUGHTS: This is my favorite damage category. I was ready to drop my Dual Ethers / Heat Sword for Dual Kamas, but then melee 2.0 hit, and now I have to ponder if Cleavers, Kamas or Heat Swords fit my bill best.


FEEDBACK: Stealth Attack does not get a hit counter, and often fails to deliver damage. Even if it does damage, no hit counter. Should probably be two then, since both weapons slice. Now, IF stealth attack deals damage, it is brutally delayed. So hard, you can sometimes squeeze in a regular hit if you have a fast dual weapon before the actual stealth damage is delivered, and this sometimes causes the stealth damage to not happen at all. Counter attack damage gets applied rather belated. Also looks like both weapons could hit, but it is again only 1 hit counter and 1 damage notifier. Their AoE ground slam radius is next to nonexisting. I sooner hit an enemy with my blades than with the AoE, and I hit a lot more with 1handed swords.


WEAPON SPECIFIC: Please revert the size of the Dual Heat Swords again unless you make their holstering option look better. You could put the the swords together at the blades, so one hilt stands out at the left shoulder, and the other right under the right hip? Then you can use this for all other Dual Sword weapons, as Zoren and Cleavers already are equally long. Or rather, short. Heat Swords have the second best slide damage in the game unmodded and are readily available. Not only have I been a large advocate of slide attacks, but I've proven them in my own tests back then to be superior to charge attacks once properly controlled. This practice pays off now. The only thing better than this in regards to slide attacks is Nami Skyla, and only by 30 points. That is not worth the Mastery Rank and Clan tech, so I am curious to know what the hidden features are.


CONCLUSION: They don't seem to get many specials compared to one-handed swords, other than the Heat sword ground slam but then again this is probably balanaced by high slide damage and fine regular damage. Which brings up the old discrepancy between single and dual wielded stuff. Remember, one Kama has two V polarities, but Dual Kama has nothing? Still, finding it a bit sad that Ether Swords are less worth than Heat Swords on every end, especially since they are more costly to produce.

    Tested: Ankyros, Furax    ( Ankyros Prime )

THOUGHTS: Since they are not restricted to hit a single target any more, and since they juggle around enemies upon a ground slam a little, they feel a lot more useful now. Their poor slide attack animation is still bothersome.


FEEDBACK: Counter attack adds a total of 4 to hit counter. +1, +1, +2. Counterattack moves camera up and down noticeably, which no other weapon type does other than Obex/Kogake. I also feel this counter attack could/should be shortened in animation, it is pretty long compared to others, leaving you too vulnerable.


STANCE (Fractured Wind): I can execute BOTH special attacks in ONE combo! If I delay my input for the 4th strike and then hold the button down, it first executes the delayed attack and then slaps then jump-attack at the end from the hold-chain. This is great, even if it is not intended, PLEASE KEEP IT THAT WAY. You just managed to give us another chain movement. Just add it to the Combo tooltips. I reckon this works with other stances as well which have these overlapping combos, I couldn't test this yet, perhaps someone else can.


CONCLUSION: Just from stats, it seems there is no reason to use the Furax and I have not seen anything in the tests as to why I ever would use it over the Ankyros in terms of performance. Looks remain subjective. Both are on the same mastery rank and Ankyros is even cheaper to produce. If they are so close, you might as well put them on par stat-wise, so people chose which flavour of gauntlets they want. I would love to use them more, but the slide attack animation puts me off, and given the similarities, I still prefer Obex/Kogake, giving me my punching fix too.


   Tested: Glaive, Kestrel    ( Glaive Prime )


THOUGHTS: I was very satisfied with these in Melee 1.0, so I looked forward for what they would do now. Probably they will shine a lot more with stances, because how M2.0 delivered them is a bit questionable.


FEEDBACK: Thrown hits do not add to combo hit counter, is that intended? I ADORE the "explosion damage" when channeling it mid-air, however this only works while the weapon moves away from you, not when it is returning. That is where the excitement ends though. Both weapons are perfectly throwable when in quickattack mode... but once you equip them, they lose this innate function. Why? By the Lotus, why? Only when holding the button after attack 2 ( attack, attackhold) or after quickly hitting the button and holding it again after performing the first attack (attackattackhold) you can throw the weapon. There is NO other opening for 3rd and 4th attack. I say if you hold quickattack from the start, you should immediately throw, and should continue to do so after every swing, at least if you go around stanceless.


WEAPON SPECIFIC: Glaive sometimes takes extra long to return and bounces joyfully through half of the room, whereas Kestrel returns well educated.


CONCLUSION: I feel a strange indifference about them now. While the channel-explosion is super rad, you've removed the intutitive way to throw them fluidly at each and every attack. If that does not make its way back to these weapons, I fear for it's long term usability.

Hammers + Heavy Axes / Swords

   Tested: Fragor, Magistar     (Jat Kittag)
   Tested: Galatine, Gram, Scindo
(( I merged both categories as they share a lot with each other ))


THOUGHTS: I tried to love them in M1.0 but it was tough. No proper slide attack, ground Finishers often failing to connect and painstakingly slow, even with Fury, and it felt they don't have the range their swings implied. No real wall attack as well. They always felt unfinished. Now, with M2.0, I tried loving them again, and it is a bit better now, but they are still a pain to use.


FEEDBACK: When in quick attack mode, the 1-2 pattern hiccups at the end of the second swing when going back into the first, lacking fluidity. This is more prominent with Hammers. Transition from 4th to 1st attack when equipped also has an issue with fluidity, happening on all heavy weapons, as if there are animations cycles missing or going too fast to close the cycle, making it feel weightless and too fast. The swing which hits the ground shows a graphic effect, but the sound is like soft cotton (2nd for hammers, 3rd for the others). It should be a weapon hit sound. All counterattacks except Galatine hit twice with animation, but add +1, +2 for a total of +3 to the hit counter.


WEAPON SPECIFIC: Galatine counter attack has no sound, other than a "clank" when the body hits the floor. The idle stance of Galatine + Gram should have the blade rested against the shoulder/body of the Warframe and not like holding on to a pole, or a torch, if anything. When doing slide attacks with heavy swords, it simply looks awkwardly stiff due to the way the weapon is held. Also, if you have the camera view switched to the right and doing a jumpkick move, the tip of the Galatine pretty much pokes through the user's screen, it is that close.


CONCLUSION: I feel they are still far behind in the game, like Daggers, compared to the remaining weapons. All their evenly distributed damage on special moves makes things even worse. The ONLY thing relevant for heavy weapons is the ground slam. Why wall attacks if you can't really perform them, and why slide attacks if the weapons seem to be clearly not designed for that. You might as well remove large quantities of these two special moves and pool them into ground slam, making sure the ground finisher hits hard as well. We talk about HEAVY weapons, right?

Hands & Feet

    Tested: Kogake, Obex

THOUGHTS: I've always been a big fan of the Obex, and only got Kogake out from the foundry to test it for melee 2.0 I was curious as of how they will be changed and while they still feel satisfying to use, there are a few things diluting the experience.


FEEDBACK: Impact status procs are detrimental to ground attack finishers because they reset the animation of the enemy, suddenly standing and staggering out of your reach, leaving you to pound the empty ground. Slide attacks and jump-slide attacks are completely broken. The knockback is very nice, yet totally overtuned, and delivers next to no damage. You only do the full damage if your Warframe can more or less do the entire airborn roll in the enemy's hitbox. If not, you either deliver kick-damage or the AoE damage associated with the attack with varying degrees. If the knockback causes an enemy to land where it should not normally be, the enemy simply dies, not yielding any exp at all even if you damaged them before. Slide animation is similar to Fist weapons... you don't really gain speed, and it feels as if you slow down. Considering the maneuver, this is totally fine, but it still feels like you could cover more distance if the animation would be executed faster. Counter attack strikes 3 times but adds 4 to hit counter ( +1, +1, +2).


WEAPON SPECIFIC: Obex has even more problems with the slide attack. Most of the time, slide attacks often deal 0 SHIELD damage, even on unshielded enemies, not even residual slide attack AoE. This makes the Obex slide attack even more worthless than Kogake. It has an electric proc chance on ground attack. Why chance? The Heat and Dark weapons are guaranteed, for example.


CONCLUSION: I feel extra sad because the tradeoffs from the Obex are gone. In the tests, the Kogake always performed better, and when looking at the stats, it is evident as to why: 5% more crit chance and 0.1 more attack speed for the Obex does not make up for the 40% increased damage the Kogake deals on all ends. Before, you chose Obex for faster attacks and Kogake for slower hits but more damage. Previously, they were closely balanced. Nowadays, Obex is completely inferior.


    Tested: Kama, Machete Wraith    ( Machete, Prova, Prova Vandal )

THOUGHTS: I wasn't a big fan of Machete Wraith when I got it, but used it thoroughly as the mod points and multi-hits were good enough until I finally got hands on my Dual Ethers way back. I looked forward to an overhaul of this weapon type, but am still left to be impressed.


FEEDBACK: You have a SINGLE chopping attack animation on melee quickattack? Seriously? Not even a left-right easy swing? Furthermore, the long 5-attack chain looks rather like 3 hits which have simply been chained differently: 1,2,1,3,2 . Having said that, you could so easily take 1+2 as unequipped quickattacks. Anyways, in this pattern, attack 2 (and thus 5, respectively) does not give you forward momentum, which is already bad considering the movement impairing effects overall.


WEAPON SPECIFIC: The Kama looks rotten, because none of the hits really fit due to the 90° offset blade. The only good thing is, since Machete uses Scythe Counter attack, this looks very appropriate, so I strongly suggest giving the Kama a different stealth finisher.


CONCLUSION: I understand the desire to create 1Handed sword types with a different flavour, but this still feels as unfinished as before, especially the crippled movement.


   Tested: none (Nikana, Dragon Nikana)

I don't have it yet (Clan research and getting materials is only so fast!) but what I can already say is; compared to it's stats on paper, the Nikana is absolutely overpriced, when just taking stats and material costs into consideration. ESPECIALLY when considering Rank 4. I'd rather have the brunt of the total resources required for the Dragon Nikana, considering it doesn't even use all 4 material slots. Because the Dragon Nikana definitely looks amazing on paper and worth the effort. Will get back to this.


   Tested: Orthos   ( Orthos Prime )

THOUGHTS: Back then when I built it, I thought "this better be good!" and I was not let down, wonderful weapon. Melee 2.0 however gives it some weird spins, even though it is still fun to use, there are a few things bothering me.


FEEDBACK: It is the only weapon I've tested which has completely different attacks when comparing quickattack with equipped mode. Regular quickattacks do not impede your movement, and have a nice flurry going on. But in equip mode, attacks slow you down pretty hard as if it was a heavy weapon / Machete. It has a blast damage proc chance on ground attack. Why only chance? And why blast to begin with? That kinda came out of nowhere. It seems the Orthos has married some flaws of heavy weapons, being labelled a "polearm." Ground Slam makes the Orthos sit flat on the ground upon hit instead of impaling an enemy. It should pierce the ground, like bladed ground finishers. Slide attacks are as slow as heavy weapons but at least it has a proper wall attack. That said though, when I only look at the damage stats, I'm more left wondering as to where this weapon wants to go than anything else, as it clearly shows Staff damage distribution, and also uses their idle animation. Lastly, counter attack sounds and looks like it could easily be two hits (pull in, pull out HURTS), yet only one is added to hit counter.


CONCLUSION: Honestly, it feels like not even Orthos knows where it sits. There is clearly too much hybredization going on. stylish counter, stealth attack and regular attacks but everything else is adopted from of Team Clumsy?  If you already tend to go towards staves, then at least give it a proper slide and wall attack.


   Tested: Ether Reaper, Hate    ( Reaper Prime )

THOUGHTS: I openly admit, I didn't use Scythes before Melee 2.0 hit. I kept my Hate and my Ether Reaper in the Foundry until that very day. I have no idea how they behaved before but oh my, they are great to use!


FEEDBACK: Scythes have same stance and idle animations as Staff weapons, which doesn't quite do them justice and are a bit unfitting. Other than that, the stealth attack and counter attack damage delivery is spot on like with Heavy weapons (excluding Galatine) and the idle time until one regains control is little during those moves. It still borrows too much from Heavy weapons. Slow Slide attack, no wall attack, etc. I mentioned above with heavy weapons should be getting more ground slam / ground finisher damage distribution, and I feel that Scythes should get the same for Slide attacks. Because that is very scythe-y!


STANCE (Reaping Spiral): The combo that looked so great in the live-stream is actually pretty disappointing in the game. It completely lacks the range one would think to have when doing the last two moves, thus often hitting thin air, especially if the enemy got staggered back extra far from an impact proc. Even with max Reach it doesn't feeI to go any farther. By default, a backpedalling Grineer shooting your face is enough to outmove your range, even without the sodding Melee target help, because you don't have the Stamina during those combos to use sprint. I do appreciate that we can control the whirling scythe left and right with the camera very much, and I also tend to be happy that it whirls in head-height for extra damage, but exactly this is makes it often miss enemies which are kneeling while shooting at you or all the "lower running" Infested. The animation between those two mentioned hits looks a bit funky as well. The scythe halfway teleports back in order to be properly kicked, instead of sticking here and letting the character approach it properly. But I guess to pull this off properly, one would need to lock the movement to not be messed up with camera rotate. IF the attacks hit it is wonderful, and IF there are enough enemies in reach to spin your camera around it is too... but other than that, it remains a gimmick. Pretty, but gimmick.


WEAPON SPECIFIC: It might be the actual model, but I feel Ether Reaper has longer range than Hate. I would love to see a bit of a size increase of the Hate anyway, perhaps to have it look less like a beefy Kama, and I wonder why Ether Reaper feels like cutting better through enemies than Hate... might be the higher attack speed when having rather similar base damage?


CONCLUSION: Scythes are satisfying, no doubt. Perhaps they feel too short ranged, though that is also a problem of heavy weapons and Scythes definitely pair with this category on a lot of fronts. When ignoring stances, the only other thing that comes to my mind is the swings perhaps not being "Scythe" enough but more too generic X / Y axis swing. But all that still makes the weapon type fun to use!


   Tested: Amphis, Bo

THOUGHTS: Excellent work on reviving staff weapons, they are so great to use now! In the past, I wanted to claw my eyes out when looking at this poor ground finisher, among other things.


FEEDBACK: Counterattack only hits once but adds +2 to the counter. Knockback on kill is fun but too overtuned, let them fly less far. Feels like Bo knocks back less, which might be related to slower base attack speed. Ground finisher could be a wider, longer sweep in order to stagger multiple enemies around while hurting the enemy on the floor.


WEAPON SPECIFIC: Is Amphis the new Zorencopter? :P At least it felt I was crushing my face against walls far more often than with most of the weapons.


CONCLUSION: I'm very glad that knockback is only happening as style factor upon kill and that they are finally a viable weapon to use. Not much to say other than good stuff! Simply loving them now!


   Tested: Cronus, Dark Sword, Ether Sword, Heat Sword, Jaw Sword, Mire, Pangolin Sword, Skana.    ( Dakra Prime, Plasma Sword, Skana Prime )

THOUGHTS: Unloved, single-hit beauties, right? Finally not any more! I hope to see more diversity among them in future balance parses, not only the ground damage variety. Even though Dark Sword Radiation base damage with toxic proc on ground slam is pure awesomeness!


FEEDBACK: Damage on counterattack should be delivered either when the blade enters the enemy's body or when it is in the motion of being pulled back, and not when the body hits the floor. So basically, like the stealth attacks: instant damage on penetration. While it is neat to have many swords cause a unique ground-slam proc, even if it is just bleed from Pangolin Sword, this all poses a different problem: Enemies do not get knocked down in ADDITION to the proc. This apparently is part of the bug which pulls enemies out of downed state if they get hit with a proc and suddenly they stand again. Cronus and Skana are the only Swords which deliver a knockdown on Ground Slam. The others don't. What is also bad is; during a proc animation like flailing from heat, you cannot knock them down with jumpkick, so you lost ALL ability to connect a ground finisher at that point and would need to resort to regular jumpkicks.


STANCE (Iron Phoenix): Wings and Beak: Why does the forward lunge deal LESS damage than the slashes? Should at least be equal. Taking Flight: two strikes for double damage on the single tap after the pause is a nice tradeoff for spamming, however I more often than not see me stop right there and either add a slide attack for even more damage or block in between to get a counter, so I can start the chain again... because I usually do not see myself going through two more hits just to deliver a knockdown on the third. If I want a knockdown right now, then usually because I am in danger. If so, a jumpkick helps me more and instantly. not only that, but the remaining 3 attacks all cause the same base damage. The last hit looks a bit off. Instead of using all the momentum in a hard strike upwards, the character looks like they'd do a full break and even go back a little, instead of following the physics of a heavy arc. Plus, if you don't move, there is little to no innate momentum.


WEAPON SPECIFIC: I fail to see why the Jaw Sword has changed from main-piercing to main-slashing damage. Please revert this, so we can have one sword back in the niche. If you say this should belong to daggers? Then make Daggers a bit more interesting to play, please.


CONCLUSION: Definitely one of my absolute highlights in the M2.0 patch. Finally it feels like one is a raving madman for trying to go for 1handed swords. I also fully agree with you to promote wall attacks with these weapons, but I think if you beef their slide attack a little, it would feel less strange why ONE heat sword for example does a lot LESS than half damage of TWO dual heat swords.


   Tested: Lecta    ( Scoliac )

THOUGHTS: Back when Lecta was released, I was so disappointed that I didn't even level it to 30 before selling. I tried a lot and hard, but it was no use. Looked forward to Melee 2.0, and I wasn't disappointed. What a gift!


FEEDBACK: You did very well with the overhaul, the 3rd attack in the chain now is really a long range thing, and the 1st and 2nd cover a decent area. I kinda miss the extremely fast finisher from Melee 1.0 though, the real whipcrack. Counter attack does damage extremely late, pretty much once the weapon is back in place again, though it should deal damage exactly when the enemy hits the ground. If you are too close doing the ground finisher, you get teleported/pushed backwards a little to have the "correct distance" for the move to be displayed, this feels rather odd. The whip should extend a little while doing a slide attack.


STANCE (Burning wasp): You can do " E, E, holdE, E " instead of " E, holdE, E ". Please do not take this away, as this gives us an extra attack if we so desire. In general, I'm rather happy with this stance for a change, because other than looks, you actually get something really good for hitting lots of enemies in a large area.


CONCLUSION: Before, I told everyone to avoid the Lecta if they want to avoid headaches and disappointments. Now, the Lecta is one of my most advertised weapons. This is definitely one of my top welcomed weapon changes of this update.

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