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Playtesting M36 vs Lucius Lasgun


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#1 Frosty71

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 08:14 PM

   I had just gotten finished with a session of Only War today and I was doing some standard book keeping. I came to discover that my Death Korps of Krieg PC's were equiped with "Cadian" M36's instead of their characteristic Lucius pattern lasguns. I decided to do some in game logistics stuff in order to tempt my players into swapping out for some more fluffy outfitting when I became curious about which of the two options is more power game worthy. For those who don't know, the Lucius lasgun packs more damage, but lacks ammo capacity and rate of fire. The M36 is more reliable, has more ammo, and has access to semi-auto burst function, but struggles with damage-per-shot. Both have the variable settings special rule.

 

   At first glance it would seem the Lucius is the poor mans lasgun, useful only for bypassing obnoxious body armour. However, after a good hour or two of simulating 50 one on one combats against Orks for both weapons I uncovered some interesting statistics. My hypothesis going into this was that the M36 would prove infinitely superior by virtue of the ridiculously higher rate of fire and battlefield sustainability. For play testing I decided to max out variable setting (why would you ever not do that?) I ommited usage of comrades, talents, and traits. For BS tests I went with BS of 50.

 

   After an hour I cranked out an average of three turns to kill an ork shoota boy with the Lucius. Most of the difficulty was due to simply missing the target, which is not a problem with the firearm itself. I never saw a turn one kill (this appeared to be a result of True Grit). When it came time to test the M36 I discovered another average of three turns to kill an ork. Once again, the primary dillema was missing the target. Ultimately, the slightly lower damage of the M36 struggled on occassion to bypass the Orks toughness and True Grit, relying heavily on the abundance of dakka.

 

   Conclusion: The Lucius and M36 lasguns are effectively equal in battlefield effectiveness: The Lucius punches through armour and toughness with ease, garanteeing to damage the enemy with every hit. Unfortunately, the Lucius is terrible in prolonged engagements due to a maximum of 9 shots per charge pack assuming one uses variable setting on maximum. The M36 proved to make up for its lack of garantee to damage by flinging so many shots that the collective cherry tapping equaled the damage that was missed out on. Once comrades, orders, talents, traits, medals, and customizations are factored in both lasgun models should be expected to decrease their turns-to-kill. The Lucius and M36 may have wildly different stat lines, but by the time all is said and done they both dish out the exact same damage.


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#2 Lynata

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 08:28 PM

An interesting analysis. :)

 

I get the feeling that the Lucius would appear more attractive if the variable settings were limited to the Triplex - as was originally the case in the early Beta, and is the case in GW's Codex fluff and the Inquisitor game. In Only War, the M36's ammunition count may make the higher energy setting a no-brainer (which you've already alluded to in your post), whereas it affects the Lucius much more, not just by burning through the power packs but also by "wasting" more rounds to Reloads actions.

I remain convinced that in this case, it was a mistake to listen to the IIUP fans.

 

But it's good to hear that both weapons are still coming out somewhat equal, for I believe this kind of comparability was quite intentional when the Lucius was first conceived by Forge World's design team.


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#3 AtoMaki

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Posted 20 April 2014 - 04:06 AM

He, I can't even remember when I last used a lasgun to actually kill stuff instead of suppressing them with burst fire so the heavy/special can finish the job with their shiny toys. In terms of power gaming, the real contender of the lasgun is the ripper gun: they have the same availability and the ripper gun is infinitely better with butchering people (at the cost of range and "investment" as you need that Bulging Biceps to turn this baby up to 11). 

 

Also, the Lucius can only fire 8 overloaded shots and not 9 IIRC. 



#4 Frosty71

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Posted 20 April 2014 - 09:39 PM

Also, the Lucius can only fire 8 overloaded shots and not 9 IIRC. 

 

8.75 to be specific. Easier and most logical to just round it up to 9.


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#5 cpteveros

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Posted 20 April 2014 - 10:44 PM

What do you guys think about basic pistols (laspistol, autopistol, stub automatic, revolver, hand cannon) and which one is best? With ammo upgrades and the laspistol's max mode, I think the laspistol comes out on top. My research may have been flawed as I've only done a handful of rolls, but it seems to me that barring a good roll with a stub automatic, the laspistol comes out on top. 



#6 Tenebrae

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 03:21 AM

 

Also, the Lucius can only fire 8 overloaded shots and not 9 IIRC. 

 

8.75 to be specific. Easier and most logical to just round it up to 9.

Not really, since it actually cannot fire that last shot.

 

But regardless of that, I'll mirror AtoMaki above and make an even stronger statement, based on how squads are (over) equipped in my experience.

The Lucius is useless because it's only single shot. The main use of Lasguns are fro supression, making that burst fire option invaluable. This should also answer

 

For play testing I decided to max out variable setting (why would you ever not do that?)

... because you want as many shots as possible, to sustain supression for as long as possible, while the heavy/special weapons do the actual killing.

 

Now, this whole post is actually a rather stronger statement than I intend. Lasguns can (and should!) be used for killing enemies of the Emperor, but that's certainly not their only use.



#7 AtoMaki

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 03:43 AM

What do you guys think about basic pistols (laspistol, autopistol, stub automatic, revolver, hand cannon) and which one is best? With ammo upgrades and the laspistol's max mode, I think the laspistol comes out on top. My research may have been flawed as I've only done a handful of rolls, but it seems to me that barring a good roll with a stub automatic, the laspistol comes out on top. 

 

The laspistol is a big time winner, but for a whole different reason than damage: reloading it is just a half action while every other pistol needs a full action. 


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#8 cpteveros

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 08:40 AM

 

What do you guys think about basic pistols (laspistol, autopistol, stub automatic, revolver, hand cannon) and which one is best? With ammo upgrades and the laspistol's max mode, I think the laspistol comes out on top. My research may have been flawed as I've only done a handful of rolls, but it seems to me that barring a good roll with a stub automatic, the laspistol comes out on top. 

 

The laspistol is a big time winner, but for a whole different reason than damage: reloading it is just a half action while every other pistol needs a full action. 

 

This is true. So I guess laspistol is the way to go! 



#9 Frosty71

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 06:55 PM

 

Now, this whole post is actually a rather stronger statement than I intend. Lasguns can (and should!) be used for killing enemies of the Emperor, but that's certainly not their only use.

 

 

Oh of course. You'd have to be insane to favour any lasgun over a heavy weapon of some kind for the purposes of dishing out pain. The fact still remains, though, that there are a lot of baddies out there who just don't care about your suppressing fire. That, or they can still kill a pc even when suppressed. Half of the new enemies added in Enemies of the Imperium, for example, are either too good at soaking suppression or are too good at killing for their loss of  a half-action to stop them from killing your heavy gunner anyways. These are the situations where the comparison between lasguns damage outputs becomes very relevant.



#10 Frosty71

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 07:24 PM

What do you guys think about basic pistols (laspistol, autopistol, stub automatic, revolver, hand cannon) and which one is best? With ammo upgrades and the laspistol's max mode, I think the laspistol comes out on top. My research may have been flawed as I've only done a handful of rolls, but it seems to me that barring a good roll with a stub automatic, the laspistol comes out on top.

All in all, bolt pistols hold up the best simply because no matter what your primary weapon is, you can always use the bolt pistol to take down anything, even a chaos space marine. Plasma pistols are acceptable, but at the short range you'd be using it you are risking a lot should you over heat. At least in long range combat with plasma rifles you always have wiggle room to drop the gun and pick it up, but in closer ranges you cannot afford to waste half-actions. A lot of which pistol you take is ultimately very dependant on your "primary" weapon and role in the squad. It should be noted that the las and autopistols have the exact same balance as seen in the M36 and Lucius, so if you use one of those I'd recomend whichever is more suited to the enemies in your campaign (autogun for formations and weaklings, laspistol for singular bigger dudes or if you have las related talents/traits).



#11 cpteveros

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 07:34 PM

 

What do you guys think about basic pistols (laspistol, autopistol, stub automatic, revolver, hand cannon) and which one is best? With ammo upgrades and the laspistol's max mode, I think the laspistol comes out on top. My research may have been flawed as I've only done a handful of rolls, but it seems to me that barring a good roll with a stub automatic, the laspistol comes out on top.

All in all, bolt pistols hold up the best simply because no matter what your primary weapon is, you can always use the bolt pistol to take down anything, even a chaos space marine. Plasma pistols are acceptable, but at the short range you'd be using it you are risking a lot should you over heat. At least in long range combat with plasma rifles you always have wiggle room to drop the gun and pick it up, but in closer ranges you cannot afford to waste half-actions. A lot of which pistol you take is ultimately very dependant on your "primary" weapon and role in the squad. It should be noted that the las and autopistols have the exact same balance as seen in the M36 and Lucius, so if you use one of those I'd recomend whichever is more suited to the enemies in your campaign (autogun for formations and weaklings, laspistol for singular bigger dudes or if you have las related talents/traits).

 

 

Oh I know how good bolt pistols are, and that's the best upgrade that you can get relatively easily. I was comparing the "starting" pistols, or the ones that are the most common or easiest to acquire. We are starting a new campaign soon, and as the sergeant, I was interested in what sidearm would be the best starter for our regimental kit. 



#12 AtoMaki

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Posted 22 April 2014 - 03:59 AM

 

 

Now, this whole post is actually a rather stronger statement than I intend. Lasguns can (and should!) be used for killing enemies of the Emperor, but that's certainly not their only use.

 

 

Oh of course. You'd have to be insane to favour any lasgun over a heavy weapon of some kind for the purposes of dishing out pain. The fact still remains, though, that there are a lot of baddies out there who just don't care about your suppressing fire. That, or they can still kill a pc even when suppressed. Half of the new enemies added in Enemies of the Imperium, for example, are either too good at soaking suppression or are too good at killing for their loss of  a half-action to stop them from killing your heavy gunner anyways. These are the situations where the comparison between lasguns damage outputs becomes very relevant.

 

These bad guys also soak lasgun damage like a pro so you are still better off to try and suppress them than try to roll 8+ and scrap a meager 1-2 wound off from their 15+ Wound pool. 






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