So we have the official first word on the Hybrid weapon and ship changes coming in December. I'll try and give the short version here.
- Less CPU usage (varies on weapon size)
- less powergrid usuage (12%)
- less capacitor use (30%)
- blasters get trackingboost (20%)
- railguns get damage boost (10%)
- many Gallente (and some Caldari hybrid boats) get speed and agility boosts
So what does it mean?
The reaction has ranged from people saying its too much to other saying its not enough, and everything in between. That's usually a good sign, but with such broad sweeping changes it is very hard to evaluate without some hard numbers that comes from actually flying the ships and getting into fights.
But we can make some general conclusions from the available information and proposed changes.
Let's look at the Eagle, a ship I have a fondness for despite never actually using one in forever due to the suckiness that hybrid weapons have presented. One of the biggest problems with the ship was lack of powergrid to fit the best railguns. With my skills the Eagle has 1093.75 MW available and fitting five 250mm Railguin IIs take 1062 MW (212 MW each). That leaves a paltry ~30 MW to fit a propulsion mod, tank, and anything else on the ship. In comparison a Muninn with five 720mm Howitser Artillery II weapons still has over 200 MW to play with.
If we apply the 12% power grid savings to our Eagle we find that this gives us around 160 MW on the Eagle to play with after the weapons are installed, enough to open up some options while still making a pilot consider the smaller 200mm Railgun IIs.
But what about the damage? Well, assuming both ships are trying to snipe out to 90 km and we've given each ships three tech II damage mods and one Tracking Computer II with the optimal range script. The Muninn, using tech II Tremor ammo has an optimal of 87 km with 27 km falloff and an estimate DPS of 211 using the latest version of Eve Fitting Tool. The Eagle doesn't need tech II ammo to reach that far so it uses Caldari Navy Lead ammo to get 87 km with 19 km falloff and a current estimated DPS of 189. The 10% damage boost for railguns gives us about 208 DPS, quite inline with the Muninn so that number at least seems accurate.
For comparison purposes, similar setups on a Zealot give 254 DPS and on a Diemos give 225 DPS (including boost and using Spike ammo), however the latter requires two tracking computers to get to 84 km optimal range.
Of course, these are just EFT numbers and a lot of other factors such as alpha, cap use, ship speed, ship tank, etc come into play. But at least the initial changes are steps in the right direction.
Personally I think that until on grid probing and warping are nerfed the range bonuses of the Eagle and similar Caldari ships are going to be a disadvantage, but I'll take whatever boosts I can get for my old favourites. IN a future post I'll take a look at what the blaster changes do for the big blaster battleships, the Megathron, Rokh, and Hyperion.