This is a collection of smaller notes and feelings I wanted to share from my time during the Pre-Release Beta, they are less in-depth than my Psyker and Staff Feedback posts, but I hope they can be helpful.
Dodging feels bad. Dodging ranged feels worse.
Dodging backwards seems to consistently fail, even with mobile weapons.
Stamina regen being stalled by dodging is the worst and creates a ‘burnout’ in prolonged combat (This was almost every. single. fight. on Heresy+, especially with Endless Hordes.) that lead to almost every single fight in Heresy+ with a remotely coordinated team being “sit in a corner that breaks LoS from ranged and spam heavies”.
Dodge sliding is cool and kinda handy, but coming to an almost complete stop at the end of the slide blows. Even with mobile weapons I will frequently find that ranged enemies I was trying to approach would just… walk backwards and spray shots into me, and be out of ranged by the time my swing would finally come out.
Suggestions: Remove the stamina stall on dodge. Dodges either need to be more numerous or regenerate faster, and they need to be more reliable.
Sprinting is underwhelming as defensive and movement option. Movement in general is frustratingly slow, and sprinting anywhere near combat is typically a one-way ticket to a block-break.
It’s very unreliable when it comes to dodge range fire, even if just briefly moving cover-to-cover. It’s often a bad idea to even attempt this, as enemies will reliably pre-fire obstacles and walls/corners you’re taking cover behind.
Stamina cost on jumping is super lame, especially given how often players get stuck on terrain while trying to move or must mantle to get over objects to regroup and explore. Players at different elevations often get ‘stranded’ behind strike teams that are trying to move because of this.
Suggestions: If enemies are not within 8m of you, Sprinting should not take your stamina below 30% (+10% per ally in coherency). Remove the stamina cost for sprinting jump inputs.
RANGED WEAPONS FEEDBACK
- A GENERAL NOTE ON DIFFICULTY SCALING & ITS IMPACT ON WEAPON VIABILITY
The jump from Threat 3 (Malice) to Threats 4 & 5 (Heresy & Damnation) is larger than the jump from Threats 1 to 3. Enemy hitpoints double in most cases, turning high-threat enemies into huge HP sponges that demand all characters bring weapons capable of controlling or dealing with them.
This is especially noticeable with weapons that are mitigated by Flak Armor, which become entirely useless in Heresy+ because they require 3 to 4 times as many hits to score kills.
In general, any weapon that requires charge-up or sustained fire (especially if it is because of low accuracy) to kill suffers greatly from this as well, because enemies don’t just become tankier, they spawn in larger numbers, become more aggressive, and attack from more angles. Every moment not spent pointing and killing with a weapon is a liability, especially when facing Specialists.
- SIDEARMS (Laspistol & Autopistol)
Cool in concept, but they turn into a liability at higher levels. Laspistols and Autopistols lose out shot-for-shot against their shouldered counterparts, have lower ammo pools, worse ammo capacity, and harsh damage falloff compared to their big brothers.
The fast switch speed and additional mobility are nice, but the above issues make their damage and sustainability unreliable.
This is doubly noticeable with the Autopistol, which can’t reliably kill Trapper or Grenadiers at medium range in a single mag.
Suggestions: Increase base magazine size and give +3 reloads. Increase the autopistol’s stability and accuracy, especially while braced. Increase the effective range, at least a small amount.
Super satisfying to use, truly feels like a ‘sidearm’, and a great sight but everything else falls apart.
Damage fails to scale to high difficulties, especially headshot damage. Even if it had damage worth using the laughable ammo reserve keeps it from seeing serious use.
Suggestions: Increase base damage. Increase headshot multipliers. Double ammo reserve, bare minimum.
- PLASMA GUN
Hard-hitting weapon that certainly feels like a piece of arcane machinery. More of a pain to use than it should be.
Suggestions: Give it more ammo back from Veteran’s ability; for an armor/special hunting weapon it sure doesn’t benefit from the thing encouraging that properly.
Cut down on the reload time and make heat more manageable. This weapon already has a lot of drawbacks as it is, the charging time and tight ammo are enough.
I liked using these more than I thought but even after the buffs they still don’t hold up particularly well in Heresy+. Pretty much no reason to use them over a basic las rifle.
Suggestions: More ammo per mag, especially for Infantry and Braced autoguns, and especially for their light/medium variants. Give an associated ammo pool increase.
Increase base stability significantly to help differentiate them from Lasguns, especially their lighter variants.
Target Penetration of unarmored targets is a must, especially for Braced and Headhunter variants (Heavy Braced does this and it is genuinely a game changer for an otherwise weaker variant).
Head Hunters are worse than every other ‘marksman’ weapon in the game, and need a damage and headshot multiplier increase.
Most importantly, give them better or attachable sights!
By far the most reliable weapons in the game, they hit hard, have good multipliers, and cushy ammo pools. Anyone in the game can contribute with a Heavy Lasgun.
Helbore needs a lot of love, it’s a joke weapon. Charged damage is worse than most lasguns continuous fire (and typically worse on ammo too).
Suggestions: Light and Medium variants are just worse across the board for Lasguns, and need some sort of love since they can’t even match their Heavy counterparts or Recon variants in DPS.
Buff Helbore’s damage or ammo efficiency to make it a better ‘switch hitter’ rifle and give it a sight or complete that weapon attachment system. Seriously buff the bayonet jab to be comparable to a melee heavy hit, with headshot multiplier.
It’s fun, satisfying, and has one of the best designed ranged weapon specials in the game, but it’s a complete meme to bring it into Heresy+ due to its damage not scaling well and its very small ammo pool.
Suggestion: Increase damage or pellet count until it can reliably one-tap Heresy+ guardsmen to the chest outside of melee range. Double the ammo pool like with the Revolver.
MELEE WEAPON FEEDBACK
- CATACHANS & HEAVY SWORDS
I don’t know if there’s some bug where Cleaving damage starts applying damage penalties on the first target hit or what, but these weapons are just incredibly sad and it only gets worse when Flak completely stops them in their tracks.
These feel like they’re meant to be humble, generalist weapons but even the most specialized weapons outclass them in EVERY regard.
Suggestions: Buffs across the board. More damage, better flak damage, more stamina-- I should look at a weapon and think “What does it do better than my ol’ reliable?”, not “I can’t wait to be rid of this piece of drek.”
No complaints here, but the damage range or at least the floor needs to be pushed up. Axes start out highly useful, and it is a long time and a fair bit of effort to get one that retains that usefulness even during progression, let alone Heresy+ content.
Suggestion: Just push those damage numbers up a bit so people can more reliably get those satisfying decapitations the weapon’s meant for rather than completely disregarding a pool of 6+ weapons when they stop killing guardsmen in a heavy attack to the skull in Malice.
Okay, I lied, I do have one to complain about. It’s sticky and lacks purpose, the unloved middle child of both the axe and chain families. Even compared to axes it’s overspecialized, and that crippling commitment makes it hard to use even if you want to build around it. Even with its specialization, you can’t make great use of it, and the damage that give it its niche just doesn’t survive the push to Heresy~Damnation.
Suggestions: I don’t know man, it needs a lot of work. It isn’t as flexible against groups or as fast-clearing as a normal axe, so that’d be a good place to start.
- DUELING SWORDS
Mk4 has a good moveset, but the others are very lacking. For a Finesse+Piercing weapon type it has INCREDIBLY bad damage against helmets even on charged heavy attacks. Not being able to reliably plunge a rapier through the head of a guardsman even on Heresy sucked, and I found the weapons only being useful as a stopgap until I could craft a mobile weapon I actually wanted to use.
Suggestions: Improve headshot multiplier and damage against non-armored hitlocation types (rager, infested, etc).
- THUNDER HAMMER
Yeah, gonna be honest I used this thing like twice before relegating it to my bag for the foreseeable future. It isn’t even overspecialized like the Chainaxe, it’s just incredibly weak outside of its charged heavies, which themselves are kind of unwieldy and seem to desperately want damage multipliers to score the satisfying one-hit-kills they intend.
Suggestions: Needs better cleave on heavies and to only detonate charged hits on armor/taggables. A soft powerweapon style buff might help. Buff the light hits, they’re just silly.
The only class I didn’t get to 30 and clear Damnation with either here or during the Closed Beta, I’ve got way less to say about them.
- KICKBACK SHOTGUN
A cool ‘burst’ option but Ogryn kinda already has that covered, and his grenades keep that niche occupied to an extent without taking his ranged slot.
Suggestion: Faster reload, more ammo, and a boatload more pellets/target penetration.
- TWIN-LINKED HEAVY STUBBER
Fun as hell, but falls off hard. For such a basic weapon the long swap and reload times are crippling, and its natural inaccuracy makes it difficult to fulfill many of the same functions the ripper guns do.
Suggestion: Tighten up the spread, especially for the start of a salvo. Slightly buff damage and armor penetration. Significantly reduce the time to swap and reload.
This was all very scattered and not as detailed or concise as I would like, but I felt it was important to try to get feedback out about which weapons were struggling to find a place in Heresy+.
There’s been a lot of talk about certain weapons ‘overperforming’ but I find that really isn’t the case in high level play, it’s just that most weapons struggle to have any footing in Heresy+. You could delete every Bolter, Power Sword, and Recon Las from the game and the options people aren’t picking wouldn’t see much more use than they do now.
I would love to see more of these weapons have a reliable place in more challenging content, and to see them more confidently fill a variety of niches and playstyles. Duelling Swords that can reliably cut down targets swiftly, Shotguns holding their own alongside the heavy-hitters in firefights, and a Thunder Hammer tearing through a crowd to send them sprawling as the Elite in the center is obliterated are all a part of the dream.
Thanks, and have a great launch!