Hagbane vs Moonbow on WS is kind of a pointless discussion anyway. One is overtuned on one specific setup, the other is overtuned whoever picks it up with no investment required. Hagbane WS can wait its turn, if it’s ever rebalanced at all with how many more pressing balance concerns there are nowadays.
For those trying it and finding it not that amazing though, I do have to wonder, are you finger rolling with it similar to uncharged conflag spam? Speeds up the charged shot spam considerably.
Just for the sake of quick math:
Longbow fires a charged shot every second.
Hagbane likewise takes a whole second.
Moonbow takes 4 seconds to charge one shot after heat is lost and still takes a half second to pull back and fire a partially charged shot.
To kill 20 SV with Longbow will take 20 up to 40 seconds depending on headshot rate and Crits.
To kill 20 SV with hag will take 40 seconds, but can be lower depending on cloud poison and finger rolling. And hag can stagger for control too. Maybe as low as 25-30 seconds.
To kill 20 SV with moonbow will take ~75 seconds. Using ult to regen an entire heat bar will shave that time down to ~60 seconds.
Moonbow is bad at doing consistent damage under pressure.
If you want to engage in melee and still use moonbow, why play WS? HM passive stamina is very strong and HM will have better melee, and escape from high pressure. Shade has boss nuking to cover a small “weakness” of moonbow, as well as has invis for when she gets pressured. SoTT covers the missing down time of moonbow with PQC and her ult.
Recently I slapped on the Hagstalker build for one Cata run after not touching it since probably 2020, and instantly had like 33k damage and all the green circles. Numbers that compete with my best Moonfire runs. Maybe it’s a playstyle you need to get used to.
The real power of Moonfire, however, is freeing up your choices so you aren’t glued to Kurnous’ Reward.
(Trueshot Volley no longer seems to return ammo on headshot when your bow has that trait - I wonder when that broke? It was the only alternative)
I just decided to play them back to back. Honestly couldn’t say which is better. Moonbow is way better at killing ambient elites and specials as you run through the map as long as you don’t completely deplete it. The horde clear is very similar because you can hold a bloodshot loaded bow that will completely take out one wave. Also, you can take spear bc you can dunk on elites with moonbow so you don’t really need the armor damage. However, hagbane is much better monster dmg if you have a strength. W/o strength, it’s pretty similar to running moonbow + Spear + loaded bow tbh. Unless you get lucky enough to have an ammo box nearby or ambient elites to regen ammo on or something. This was on cata though, not just 20 SV. Although, against 20 SV, I’d def take moonbow + loaded bow.
You could argue it also needs no active reloading contrary to javelins, and have longbow impact damage and double hagbane DoT.
Moonbow can destroy a CW patrol, but I agree its effectiveness on monsters is kind of lacking, even with a strength pot. Or rather, I think there is something wrong with hagbane and str pots because the increase in damage is bonkers.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not deploring its low monster damage at all - and as @Revy says, Shade intrinsically compensates for that single weakness.
HM has enough steroids to make most elf weapons decent at the very least against most monsters, heck, just moonbow alone does like 600-700 damage per full barrage so if you can output 500 in melee during those 17 seconds waiting for the downtime then…well you get the idea.
Nah, not way more. Both are similarly powerful at being able to dumpster incredible amounts of stuff. Though I would agree that both are two of the best classes in the game (and beat HM/SotT).
This is more of a comment on how every elf ranged weapon except Moonbow, Jav, and Longbow are borderline unusable on 3 out of 4 elf classes. And all 3 of these ranged weapons fulfill fairly similar roles
It has spike damage, it doesn’t have sustained damage. It’s really great if you are e.g. Shade, the monster runs away from you, and you can plink 5 quick moonbow shots into it to get both a high damage spike + a full 25% barrage damage boost for 4-5 melee hits.
A CW patrol? What? You’re gonna have to explain this.
With a str pot, and of course not as efficiently as others but yeah a couple of spread out fully charged shots do severely dent a patrol’s health pool, and if the patrol doesn’t spawn in your face you have time for at least one more shot in the pot’s duration.
That plus your career ability (whether WS, SotT or Shade) usually deletes most of a pat, yeah. HM has that almost permanent 15% power increase.