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Shotguns Require And Have Required Changes For A Long Time: They Lack Damage, Range, Have Poor Pellet Mechanics


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Another update has passed and yet still and entire class of weapons remains inferior to a sub class of another weapon type that merely imitates it. I speak of shotguns. I have until recently had no use of shotguns and in my experience with them I became appalled by the nature of their use.


Why? Much of this has to do with the specific mechanics that effect shotguns but not other weapons that fire like shotguns. The other portion has to do with the way the game rewards getting close enough to deal damage. I will break this down and go over them one by one.


Pellet Mechanics


I must say that shotguns absolutely require multishot mods. The pellet output on them without it is atrocious. On the sobek the amount of pellets per shot are 3. Three! Because of the nature of damage calculation this causes the amount of damage in a shot to go down significantly. Even if all three shots connect damage output is atrocious. Now you may say that the increased number of pellets mean even greater chance at critical hits and status... but it really and truly doesnt. As I understand it crits are determined per pull of the trigger. Which cuts down the ability to land a special effect immensely. There are pistols that ape shotgun mechanics and in practice have greater chance at proc's because their behind the scenes mechanics are better overall. This would be fine if the next point were not true.


Overall damage based on distance/Game not rewarding getting in close


Shotguns fall off incredibly hard with any range that gets near being considered "mid". You might say "Well of course they are meant to be used close range" but there is a problem with this as many people who use melee can attest to. Enemies have a large series of tools to deal with the player getting close. Slams, melee attacks, increasing damage with proximity.


For mostly melee users, this issue is familiar and often worse. With melee combos there is no way to break off confrontations because dodges and other such inputs are ignored during attacks. But here lies the difference. With melee there exists a greater level of reward. Melee might not get consistent hitstun... or good agency, or a guarantee that you can break out of the engagement, or issues with melee lockon... (PLEASE TAKE ANOTHER LOOK AT MELEE AND ITS ASSOCIATED MECHANICS) My point is that melee has strong stopping power. Shotguns do not. The resulting damage from getting close does not outweigh the harm taken by enemies.


Enemy AI, movement, environments and so on do not serve getting in that close with such a weak weapon


Poor versions of mods for other weapons


Shotguns as a class of weapon have poor damage increasing mods compared to their rifle counterparts. The Point Blank mod caps much sooner than serration, a mod that has 10 upgrade tiers because it is intended to serve as a way for shotguns to progress.




-Increase general pellet count

-With range decrease number of pellets that hit rather than sharply decreasing damage.

-Reconsider existing pellet mechanics. They only serve to leave the weapon behind

-Please look at armor scaling as it harms shotguns more than anything. If a user has to get in close to do damage and only be rewarded with 10's and 17's they have given more advantage to the enemy to mash their face than they have gotten to deal damage.

-Bring shotgun mods in line with other primaries.




Discuss. I take it that many other people have experienced this and that it has been this way for such a long time that some people have given up on seeing this changed.

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If critical and status chances were per-pellet, and Hell's Chamber went to 10 ranks (scaling to +220% multishot), the weapon class would be comparable in power to the current rifle family.


Also, the dropoff mechanics need tweaking, and a set of mods that reduce it.

Perhaps a flat 200% modifier at anything within 3m, base damage until 8m (or different per weapon), then a gradual drop-off varying from weapon to weapon.

Edited by Kthal
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The whole shot gun idea in current state is rubbish for the most part. Pellets were never intended for large game, their purpose is for small hard to hit fast moving objects like ducks , rabbits and the sort Sure theres bigger shot cartridges with bigger fewer shot which maybe more effective againsts bigger targets its still far from ideal hence the solid shot. One Big slug designed to travel farther and hit harder for larger game. The military have taken it a step farther even by designing grenades for the common 12 gauge.

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-First of all, falloff kills shotguns completely,  you seriously lose damage from spread alone, with falloff its abysmal. Take pistol-shotguns (Detron, Pynrana, Bronco) - they have no fall-off but still they become much weaker with distance due to spread.

Take beam weapons (Synapse, Phage)  - they have hard limit 20-25m  but do full damage and have no spread, you can even headshot at 25m, thats why they are usable. 


-Even point-blank shotguns are poor!  Only Boar Prime has high DPS point-blank.   ie fall-off on Brak is justified cause its one the strongest weapon at short distance. Shotguns are not, they lose to rifles at any distance.  And you cant score 100% headshots with most of them unless you come as close as possible.


-Another specific is that (maxed) shotguns might have decent paper DPS, but pretty high damage per shot but small ammo capacity and very slow reload meaning they are practically less effective (you waste 4k damage shot to kill a mob with 1k hp for example). Its similar issue as with sniper rifles.

Reload and ammo capacity mods on shotguns have very low values to compensate. 


-Mods: @(*()$ hard to find. Blaze is must have and its the rarest NM mod.  Poison mod is a rare drop from rare mob. Fire rate mod is a rare drop from void secret rooms. 


-Im not sure about pellet mechanics and chances, Im not very knowledgeable how its calculated now, all I know - shotguns used to have much higher chance for proc and crit and it used to make them better (worth using for procs)


To do list:

- Get rid of fall off completely. Or you have to make the shotgus deal much more damage point-blank to justify the fall-off (Brakk level damage yes)


- Rebalance damage/dps not only in a way of higher per-shot damage, but improving sustained DPS by lowering reload and increasing ammo capacity 

Why is double-barreld shotgun good in other action games like old Doom2?  Because it has quick reload. Compare to painfully slow Tigris. 


- Give tose rare mods a higher drop chance. 


Highly doubt Scott will read it so Im not sure why I even bother to write 

Edited by Monolake
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step 1 is to outright remove Shotgun Damage Falloff.


no longer do we have 600% Multishot, Armor Ignoring, and 9m Piercing.

Shotguns aren't OP any more, we don't need Falloff to compensate for them being so.


their lack of hitting the target at range already makes them highly inefficient for dealing Damage as it is. Shotguns don't need the triple nerf they've been riding on since U6. the Weapons just don't do what they used to do, yet the same countermeasures are in place.

hell, Multishot actually makes Shotguns increase in Spread by some degree, so while they have more Pellets, more of them miss.



step 2 is Status to be per pellet as it was right at D2.0. the very least Shotguns could do is have great Status so that they can be Support Weapons, if they aren't going to have great Damage.

making Crits and Status to be the listed values on the Weapon, per pellet. no, it won't be OP. it'll give them a role in the game.



step 3 is making Shotguns more unique. unfortunately, we don't have that many, and yet most Shotguns are still so similar to each other.



step 4 is Ammunition management and effectiveness from it. i generally find i can keep Ammo in supply well enough, usually keeping above 75% capacity for the pool. this is mostly due to the sluggish rate at which the Weapons are used, some Shotguns have atrocious Reloads, but most are just average.

more importantly though, it's a smaller Ammunition Pool - yet they can do less Damage per Ammunition used. that doesn't even make sense. Shotguns have 78% less Ammunition, yet less spammy Weapons, like an Assault Rifle or a DMR will deal the same Damage, or often more Damage... per shot. 

and the Shotgun only does that same Damage at point blank Range, and if you're lucky enough to have 100% of the Pellets hit, none of them going wild and missing at close Range.


gotta do something about that. the other Weapon Archetypes are objectively superior in all possible facets.

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spread in of itself makes shotguns damage reduced based on distance away from the target.  on paper shotguns damage is ok.... WITHOUT considering that you probably miss 30% of your pellets per shot.....   compared to a normal rifle which has all the damage lumped into one space, damage on shotguns should be pretty damn high

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Don't forget a nice corpse ragdoll on kill. Nothing dramatic, just enough to send the body flying back a few feet. Maybe only make the effect happen if a certain number of pellets out of the max number of pellets hits the target. I want my shotguns to feel powerful.


If you get a kill with an impact or blast procs, this happens.


If shotguns get a buff, you can mod this in.

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Shotguns are in really bad state. Damage falloff is just terrible, even Tigris, presumably one of the hardest hitting weapons in game (200 dmg per shot) deals very little damage outside of point blank range.

There comes the spread that additionally decreases damage.


Shotguns need more damage, reliable damage. They're high risk - high reward type guns, or at least they should be. Right now their viablity is very limited. 


I really hope that they will be buffed soon. 


On a side note, I wish there was something like M-300 Claymore in Warframe - very powerful, single shot.

DE pls

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Yeah Shotguns are pretty bad, I think they just need to remove damage fall off since they aren't top tier anymore with all the new weapons that have been released recently.


Also I dunno if they address this yet so I can be wrong, but the procs are really low/nonexistent. A Shotgun that shoots 4 pellets with 20% proc actually 5% proc chance per pellet so it is very low as oppose to a rifle with 20% proc is 20% per shot.

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Also the fact that vicious spread exist means there is already balance.

If you want your pellets in a tight group at long range, it means you have to give up a base damage mod.


Vicious spread will give you moar roar DPS on paper, but you must get closer.

That is good enough trade off imo.


So we can do without falloff.

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I don't get why shotguns have falloff to begin with. They do not hit stronger than rifles. Even boar prime basically hits like boltor prime. And at range it would always be worse because of spread. And it has 3 times less ammo.

They should remove falloff from everything really. Even brakk - as long as it's obtained like it is now. And status chance nerf was uncalled. Status is just not powerful enough. A lot of weapons proc 100% of time. Glaxion for example - and you have good control of what it will proc.

Edited by (PS4)Lord_Gremlin
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Being new to shotguns I didn't expect to see that so many other people had issues with it in the same manner that I did. And you say its been this way for this long? 


I've got a question for those of you keeping up with that sort of stuff. How many times has DE mentioned shotgun buffs as coming?

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On a side note, I wish there was something like M-300 Claymore in Warframe - very powerful, single shot.

DE pls

Ah the good ole' Claymore, beast of a gun that one. Just thinking about it makes me wistful for how badass shotguns are in Mass Effect.


And more on topic yes shotguns need some serious help. I think just getting rid of the damage falloff mechanic would be enough, pellet spread is damage falloff enough adding arbitrary loss in damage after that is just stupid.


Really I think DE just needs to decide what it wants it's shotguns to be like. Either you go the route Mass Effect did and have no damage falloff just pellet spread or go the old-school FPS route of having damage falloff but having shotguns deal unparalleled damage up close.


If they go the later route then every shotgun in the game needs it's base damage doubled, at least.  

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About dmg falloff / range i think a good "rework" could be:


Nominal dmg is dealt in a range between 10 to 20m,

after 20m dmg falls off by 20% every 5m (within 25m will be 80%, 30m = 60%, 40m = 40%, 50m = 20%) 

while in the 5-10m range they deal 125% of the nominal dmg

and in the 0-5m range they deal 150% of it

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