Shotgun is embarrassingly bad right now

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bobucles
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Re: Shotgun is embarrassingly bad right now

Post by bobucles » Wed Jul 11, 2018 4:39 am

Obviously a single gun is going to struggle to take down an entire army. That's only to be expected. AoE weapons like the flamer and extra guns like turrets give the force multipliers that a single shotgun can never accomplish.

The tech tree could benefit from being consolidated somewhat. It would be nice to have weapon researches condensed into broader topics like projectile, explosive and fancy. Some weapons don't get upgrades at all like land mines and others are too far out of the way for boosting a single niche weapon.

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Re: Shotgun is embarrassingly bad right now

Post by bobingabout » Wed Jul 11, 2018 8:50 am

that was another killer for the shotgun. you used to be able to shoot your normal weapons out of a car before the tank was added, then it was changed to the vehicle's weapon. so you were limited to SMG or the tank cannon. Tank now includes flamethrower too, but no vehicle has a shotgun on it. it reduces the apeal, because you can't use mass manufactured shotgun ammo in your car, but you can with your SMG ammo.
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Re: Shotgun is embarrassingly bad right now

Post by ThorsDragon » Sat Dec 29, 2018 5:23 pm

I like most of these posts.

Shotguns are better against bases- they don't use a full piece of ammo per shot, and deal better damage against the bases then smg does. So they're cheaper/better options for taking down bases.
Also, I love the feeling of the combat shotgun with speed upgrades- feels good. :D

Main problem is that you can't effectively kill bases and biters at the same time with just a shotgun.
If you're playing multiplayer, one person can give you cover smg fire while you shotgun the base = most effective way to clear bases with low-tier science and weaponry. This is before flamethrowers, grenades, rockets, vehicles, etc. to be clear.
I like this mechanic as it 'buffs' multiplayer, so to speak. That being said, I agree that in general usage, shotgun is lacking, and needs a buff.

Preferably- I would like to see a very small nerf to other weapons, except nukes -they're supposed to be overpowered. Then buff shotguns, so there's balancing here, not just powercreep. I like the idea of making the spread more narrow, and adding another tier of ammo, lessening the move speed penalty, and increasing the damage per pellet. Plus increasing the range -or- alternatively lowering the range on spitters. Might be easier to increase range, as that only affects the shotgun to spitter relationship, whereas nerfing spitter range would affect nearly everything else combat related as well.

And another problem- Can we please get more weapon slots?? I hate that I can't carry all of my weapons on bar at the same time, even if that meant more rotating to get to the weapon that I want/need.

Sidenote- playing multiplayer with mods that increase health and movespeed made the idea of a melee weapon really cool. In a non-modded scenario, creating a power armor with only power, movepseed, and shields would allow the use of a melee weapon to be valid. Said melee weapon could be a sword at early game and some sort of energy sword/lightsaber at mid to end game tier, or some sort of possibility which will give a slight range increase- significantly shorter than any other weapon in the game.

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Re: Shotgun is embarrassingly bad right now

Post by AileTheAlien » Sat Dec 29, 2018 5:31 pm

BlakeMW wrote:
Sun Dec 31, 2017 9:15 am
it should be removed from the game.
+1 for removing the shotgun from the game.

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Re: Shotgun is embarrassingly bad right now

Post by darkfrei » Sat Dec 29, 2018 6:15 pm

I've tried to make shotgun great again better here https://mods.factorio.com/mod/FearShotgun
But you cannot feel that this weapon has better performance. The gunshot turret is also not playable :cry:

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Re: Shotgun is embarrassingly bad right now

Post by hobbitmax999 » Fri Jan 04, 2019 4:04 pm

bobucles wrote:
Sun Dec 31, 2017 12:42 am
Clearly the shotgun suffers from being an okay weapon in a sea of great weapons. Some options:
- Nerf the other weapons. Makes the shotgun great but nerfs always make people mad
- buff the shotgun. Stronger pellets are cool but I'd like to see explosive pellets. Because reasons.
- merge research. Maybe every weapon doesn't need it's own research line. Instead use a more generic projectile/explosive tech. That way the shotgun is always on par with SMG.
in the new update 0.17 they will be merged like you want so shotguns speed and dmg goes up as well

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Shotguns no longer are competitive , with no useful niche

Post by Stakhanov » Sun Mar 10, 2019 6:10 pm

While shotguns already had very limited uses in 0.16 , I'd argue the combat system change in 0.17 made them effectively useless beyond shooting isolated , undefended single nests prior to any weapon or ammo upgrades. An issue arises when trying to use them against worm or spitter defended nests : firing them slows you down for the whole reload cycle , making it very difficult to dodge acid spit. If even one acid hit connects and slows you down , you cannot continue shooting without being hit by any further acid attacks. The SMG by contrast , lets you fake out spitters and worms and manoeuver while shooting most of the time.

I did some testing on a custom scenario , trying various weapons and ammo types against biters , spitters and worms of increasing size.
With basic ammo , the SMG appears to be the superior general purpose weapon as it kills biters reliably (the shotgun can outright miss at point blank range) and works on small worms and nests just fine. The shotgun might possibly kill nests slightly faster , but that comes usually at the cost of health from biter attacks as they might not die before reaching you. Small biters and spitters can be dispatched with the pistol just as easily as with the shotgun.

Once you factor in piercing SMG ammo , it's no contest - the military 3 combat shotgun is inferior to the SMG. While it allows easier dodging , its effective damage is still too low to justify using it instead of the SMG or flamethrower.

Assuming no upgrades at all (which would not happen in freeplay) the combat shotgun with military 4 piercing shells is about on par with a piercing ammo SMG for the task of shooting medium biters at close range , and deals a bit more damage to a big biter (but he'll deal a lot of damage to you) and to a behemoth spitter. But the flamethrower makes a joke out of them.

I haven't tested max upgraded combat shotguns with piercing ammo and exoskeletons against end game nests , but I have a hunch they wouldn't fare too well. Consider that tanks and personal laser defense come right after military 3.

So it seems that shotguns could use some improvements. They might be made more reliable and damaging with a larger number of pellets , gain piercing shells much earlier (perhaps even alongside the SMG piercing ammo at military 2) and perhaps work better against crowds of biters with a stunning / knockback effect. There needs to be a reward for using them to justify the huge associated risk.

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Re: Shotguns no longer are competitive , with no useful niche

Post by BlueTemplar » Sun Mar 10, 2019 6:35 pm

Shotguns are very cost-effective*, but yeah, they become basically useless if you're facing more than 3 small worms concentrating fire on you.

*cost-effective in theory at least, I haven't tested if drag-building a dozen turrets and drag-filling them wouldn't end up more cost-effective because hardly any extra biters would have the time to spawn before the spawners and worms are dead...

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Re: Shotgun is embarrassingly bad right now

Post by Koub » Sun Mar 10, 2019 9:03 pm

[Koub] Merged into older topic on the same subject.
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Re: Shotgun is embarrassingly bad right now

Post by ManaUser » Mon Mar 11, 2019 2:27 am

You know, one of the worst things about the shotgun is that it doesn't auto-aim. A shotgun (with scatter-shot) should be easier to hit with, but this design quirk means it's the opposite.

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Re: Shotgun is embarrassingly bad right now

Post by BlakeMW » Fri Apr 05, 2019 11:27 pm

I decided to make a very simple mod that makes what seems to me to be a reasonable buff to the shotgun:

https://mods.factorio.com/mod/MakeTheShotgunGreatAgain

It only does two things: increases the damage of Shells from 5 to 10, and increases the damage of Piercing Shells from 8 to 24.

This restores the original balance from when regular ammo did 2 damage and shotgun pellets did 5 damage, and from before Uranium Ammo was introduced. That is the shotgun is, in the early game, made about twice as powerful as the SMG, and in the late game is the ultimate raw damage hose.

Playing around with it, the Shotgun is still pretty much complete garbage compared with the Flamethrower and Rocket Launcher, altough before the Flamethrower it is somewhat effective for wrecking hordes of biters. Against nests, the 3 additional range of the SMG still makes the SMG very appealing to use against spawners and Worms, because having to move 3 tiles closer generally means several extra worms get to spit at you, so the shotgun is a "I'd like to die in a pool of acid please" weapon.

In the late game you can get a Power Armor loaded with shields and then the acid pools aren't so much a problem, but it does have to compete with the much higher damage and utility of the Flamethrower, and the much longer range and still very respectable damage of the Rocket Launcher. Essentially both Rocket Launcher and Flamethrower allow eliminating targets WITHOUT getting spat at (much). Furthermore when you load up with shields, you can't load up with Personal Laser Defense, so using the Shotgun forgoes a bunch of "free", auto-aiming damage.

In my opinion with the state of the current combat, emphasizing dodging and staying out of range of spitballs, there just isn't much role for a short range weapon, even with very high dps, particularly if that weapon compromises ability to evade (i.e. Discharge Defense is actually pretty good even though it's short range, because using it doesn't cause a movement penalty).
More Thoughts
Basic shotgun and shells are potentially okay as they are, with a damage buff to make them convincingly worthwhile vs SMG. When just comparing the SMG and Shotgun, the SMG can be the safe choice due to longer range and high precision, while the Shotgun is the risky but rewarding choice, due to higher damage but shorter range and lower precision.

Piercing Shells aren't very good even if they were to deal 10000000000 damage because it's just not very worthwhile putting yourself at risk of eating more spitballs once you have the option not to. This could be remedied to a large degree by increasing the pellet range (to 18, like the SMG) and reducing the movement speed penalty of the Combat Shotgun, then you don't have to eat spitballs to use the Combat Shotgun: there does come a point though, where it kind of becomes the "Better SMG" except for dealing collateral damage, and even then it'll still mostly be just worse than the flamethrower.

One thing which could be cool is treating the shotgun as an evolutionary dead-end (AS IT SHOULD BE!), with no upgrade to the Shotgun and Shells: the spiritual successor to the Shotgun is the Flamethrower, being basically an intrinsically better aoe weapon.

If the Combat Shotgun and Piercing Shells are removed from the game, that could free up a weapon slot for a new weapon type. One option could be something like a Railgun, but another option could be an upgrade to the SMG like a Minigun: then bullet weapons have a lineage, but the other weapons (shells, flame, rockets) only have the single weapon. In this design, Military 3 would offer a couple trinkets like the Poison Capsules but mainly serve to gate the extremely useful Tank and Personal Laser Defense, while the new uber-weapon would be on Military 4.

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Re: Shotgun is embarrassingly bad right now

Post by QGamer » Sat Apr 06, 2019 3:22 am

BlakeMW wrote:
Fri Apr 05, 2019 11:27 pm
...it does have to compete with the much higher damage and utility of the Flamethrower, and the much longer range and still very respectable damage of the Rocket Launcher. Essentially both Rocket Launcher and Flamethrower allow eliminating targets WITHOUT getting spat at (much). Furthermore when you load up with shields, you can't load up with Personal Laser Defense, so using the Shotgun forgoes a bunch of "free", auto-aiming damage.

In my opinion with the state of the current combat, emphasizing dodging and staying out of range of spitballs, there just isn't much role for a short range weapon, even with very high dps, particularly if that weapon compromises ability to evade (i.e. Discharge Defense is actually pretty good even though it's short range, because using it doesn't cause a movement penalty).

...
What if...the movement penalty for the shotgun is reduced slightly and the movement penalty for the combat shotgun is reduced greatly?
Then perhaps if the damage bonuses were slightly higher for the shotgun shells vs. the bullets?
And finally if the range of the shotgun is increased?

Ideally, I'd like to see the SMG and Shotgun both be useful in their own situations. For example use the shotgun when dealing with a horde of biters and spitters, use the SMG against a small number of targets.

Maybe nerf the SMG if necessary, perhaps by applying a firerate (or maybe range) penalty to Uranium ammo?

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Re: Shotgun is embarrassingly bad right now

Post by bobucles » Sun Apr 07, 2019 2:47 pm

The shotgun has traditionally been a short range brawling weapon. However it also has a massive movement speed slowdown in combat. Short range and slow are a disastrous combination. Reducing the snare penalty will definitely make the shotgun a much better weapon to spar with.

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Re: Shotgun is embarrassingly bad right now

Post by BlakeMW » Fri Apr 12, 2019 10:43 am

I updated my [mod](https://mods.factorio.com/mod/MakeTheShotgunGreatAgain) again, with the follow changes:

Regular Pellets: 5 -> 8 damage : to improve dps and armor-pierce, put on-par with piercing ammo, keep up with evolution on marathon
Piercing Pellets: 8 -> 16 : to improve dps and armor-pierce, competitive with Uranium Ammo

Movement Penalty: 0.6 -> 0.4 and 0.5 -> 0.4 : so both shotguns now have a movement penalty close to the Flamethrower (0.3)

Piercing Pellet range: 15 -> 16 : Mainly to match the range of Behemoth Spitters, also makes it out-range the personal laser defense.


At this balance the Shotgun mostly offers the highest raw dps of any personal weapon, with the downside of being short range and capable of missing.

It makes the shotgun beastly under normal settings (though you have to be better at dodging spit patches than for longer range weapons) and it's usable on Deathworld Marathon, like the Rocket Launcher and Flamethrower. Overall, the progression feels a lot more like back in the <0.12 days, when you could tech a lot faster especially with alien science being trivial, and so get really high upgrades on the shotgun relative to biter evolution. It still wont slaughter hordes of Behemoth Biters (unlike the Flamethrower) but can mow down everything else.

In the early game the shotgun faces stiff competition from the longer range and perfect accuracy of the SMG and the devastating firepower of the Flamethrower, then it has to compete with the long range and high damage of the Rocket Launcher: and I feel it does compete, without being clearly better. The peak is probably when Combat Shotgun arrives, with modular armor and shields you can shred nests and small/medium enemies. But of course, this is also the time when Rocket Launcher and Tank arrive, so the Combat Shotguns main advantage is it's cheap and easy, the alternative weapons require a diversion into the production of explosives.

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Re: Shotgun is embarrassingly bad right now

Post by Chao » Fri May 10, 2019 5:08 pm

Maybe rather than removing the shotgun, remove the pistol and make the normal shotgun the starting weapon.

We all know the pistol is pretty worthless too afterall. This gives us 1 low tier weapon rather than 2 and a better differentiator between low and next tier other than just speed, the accuracy of the SMG becomes the key differentiator at the beginning.

It also makes some sense as shotgun shells are basically small balls contained in a plastic tube, whereas bullets for an SMG need far more precision to create reliably.

So your progression would look something like:

Shotgun and normal shells -> SMG and normal ammo -> combat shotgun and piercing shotgun shells -> piercing ammo -> uranium ammo.

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Re: Shotgun is embarrassingly bad right now

Post by Ghoulish » Fri May 17, 2019 1:36 am

Chao wrote:
Fri May 10, 2019 5:08 pm
Maybe rather than removing the shotgun, remove the pistol and make the normal shotgun the starting weapon.
This makes sense to me, the pistol is more useless than petrol is at putting out fires.

I would also like to mention something that Rampant Arsenal does, by giving you additional ammo types, one that is added for the shotgun (among many) Is a type of shell that knocks back the biters, it's very useful, so perhaps as well as some type of buff to the shotgun additional types of ammo could be added? Maybe this could tie in with a thread I read round these parts about needing a better sink for uranium (which is totally needed as well!).
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Re: Shotgun is embarrassingly bad right now

Post by mudcrabempire » Tue Jul 02, 2019 3:39 pm

As far as I can tell, the shotgun and upgrades are not meant to be good in the long run. Its a weapon you get early, abuse it as long as you can and then ditch it once you get better options.

The main strength of the shotgun is it's extremely good damage/resource ratio (provided all pellets hit). So the shotgun can be seen as an early alternative to the SMG for players who like to trade better resource-efficiency for higher difficulty-of-usage.

I tried the combat shotgun in my last game and as long as you don't run into big [anything] it does a pretty good job. At least its more fun than the "press-space-to-kill" of the SMG, once you got the hang of how to use it.

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Re: Shotgun is embarrassingly bad right now

Post by FuryoftheStars » Tue Jul 09, 2019 10:46 pm

I wonder, too, how much the small collision boxes of the biters has to do with it. Even the behemoth biters/spitters have relatively small boxes that only catch a couple of the pellets despite the sprite being so big it could easily catch 90% of the pellets at moderate range.

I realize that these collision boxes are probably so small in the first place to help with pathing, it was just something I noticed. Probably decreasing the spread as others have mentioned would help with this.

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