Rapid-fire weapons - August 4, 2015

Daily posting, on the topic of rapid-fire weapons.

Rapid-fire weapons are weapons that can inflict up to 256 hits in a single attack while the attack button is held down (presuming that the character's ammo holds out and the enemy doesn't die during the 256 hits), and hits at a rate of around 4 hits a second.

Rapid-fire weapons include the Assault Rifle (generally weak on its own, but standing next to allies gives buffs with it equipped), the Behemoth (the highest damaging rapid-fire weapon and has the most ammo of all weapons, but the user cannot move and suffers double damage until their Speed Counter recharges), the Chainsaw (very weak melee weapon, but does not require ammo and can always do 256 hits in one rapid-fire assuming the enemy doesn't move), the Jupiter (moderate damage Lightning elemental, but generally only really useful to those who specialize in it) and the Glacier (weak Cold elemental Symbiote Monster debuffer).

Rapid-fire weapons can be powerful sure-fire ways of dealing damage to an enemy until they fall, but their damage per ammo return can be quite low. For example, the Rifle at maximum range deals damage at Attack x 3 and has 10 ammo. The rapid-fire Jupiter deals damage at Attack x 0.3 and has 30 ammo; for the Jupiter to match the Rifle's damage under base conditions, it needs to expend 10 ammo to match the damage and can do so 3 times (whereas the Rifle can do so 10 times).

If the rapid-fire weapon in play is the Chainsaw or the user can keep up their ammo through Ammo Maximum and Ammo Loss Competencies or Ammo Drones with several boosts, then they can unleash a prolonged attack that is especially viable with a full Defend Bar (at least 2x more damage). When trading hits with an enemy, assuming no adjustments to Speed Counter gain, the rapid-fire user can get in 26 hits before their target's next turn, which in the case of the Jupiter example totals to Attack x 7.8 (or Attack x 15.6 with a full Defend Bar).

Rapid-fire attacks generally work best with a full Defend Bar, as the user will be standing in place dealing damage, and it would be best if any damage received in that time was cut in half.

There are a number of Competencies to boost rapid-fire capabilities. There are those that cause bigger and bigger damage boosts the longer a rapid-fire goes on for (Rapidfire Focus for Behemoth, Cut Deeper for Chainsaw, Bolt Storm for Jupiter, Ice Storm for Glacier), abilities that boost the Unarmed Combo Modifier (Combo Saw for Chainsaw) or better yet, use and boost the Unarmed Combo Modifier (Bolt Infinity for Jupiter). One ability causes area of effect of the attack to increase the longer rapid-fire goes on for (Deep Freeze for Glacier).

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