Outcast Engineer Meta – Linked Compression Chamber vs. Innovative Ammo Hoppers

Compression chambers are a form of energy storage that are rapidly becoming obsolete in the military. The first two decades of the 21st century saw a dramatic increase in the size and weight of the modern rifle. This trend only increased as non-lethal weapons and anti-personnel rounds entered service. The result was that many small arms manufacturers began developing new equipment that would allow soldiers to fire deadly projectiles, while simultaneously launching lighter projectiles for close-range engagements.

In 2012, a new type of minigun was introduced to the battlefields of PlanetOutcast!  An Innovative Ammo Hopper (IAMH) has the ability to load and unload ammo from a magazine as well as the ability to store surplus ammo in its magazine. An OUTCAST LABORATORY COMPREHENSIVE COMPRESSION CHAMBER (LCFC) is able to hold more ammo and un-load the magazine faster so it can quickly regenerate ammo. Given these two weapons, which is better? What is the better choice to take to battle?

Outcast engineer meta is a game I created a long time ago. I’ve recently made it available on my website as an open source project in hopes that people will be able to help me improve it and expand on the ideas I’ve put in place. I’ve also made a PC version of the game, which you can check out here .

I’d want to speak about Outcast Engineer a little bit since it’s one of my favorite courses, but it’s also one of the most controversial – it’s often scored badly. Following some recent online debate, I’ve noticed that most people suggest a level 30 skill that I think poor, and I’m wondering whether this is contributing to the class’s bad reputation.

Note that the data below is based on the game mode that I play the most often — unmodified cata fast play with random partners.

After killing a special, Innovative Ammo Hoppers (IAH) offers you a 50% bigger ability bar and 4 seconds of free shooting.

The Linked Compression Chamber (LCC) enables your crank cannon to fire at full speed right away, rather than gradually increasing the firing rate.

I see why people believe Innovative Ammo Hoppers is the way to go; it just sounds better on the surface, but it’s really quite terrible for many reasons:

  • IAH basically just provides you extra ammunition; if you were never going to run out of ammo in the first place, the skill has no impact.

  • Unlike IAH, LCC has an instant effect each time it is used. Although careful ammunition management may minimize the need for additional ammo (ammo refills at the same rate regardless), the damage penalty for absorbing IAH is inevitable.

  • At peak speed, the crank cannon delivers DOUBLE damage and takes just under 2.5 seconds to ramp up to maximum. LCC will have done 50% more harm than IAH in that time period. It’s a significant change.

  • When playing correctly, you should only use the crank cannon for a few seconds at a time. In the 2.5 seconds it takes IAH to ramp up, LCC can kill four chaos maulers or seven plague monks. Aside from monsters, there isn’t a single opponent in the game that requires that much continuous firing.

  • The longer you have your crank gun out, the more likely you are to get poked in melee by some random rat. Anyone can keep oneself safe from ranged fire for 1-2 seconds with good ducking and spacing, but if you sit with a ranged weapon in the center of a horde for more than that, your teammates will have to watch you. IAH promotes an unhealthy dependence on colleagues.

  • After killing a special, IAH offers you “free” shooting time, although in reality, if you’ve already killed the special, you usually don’t need to shoot for much longer. Even on Cata, where specials appear in bunches, the pistol and crank gun combination can swiftly dispatch them without running out of ammunition. Using less than 20% of your ability bar, the crank cannon can kill three leeches in under a second. Extra ammunition isn’t required.

  • Monsters are an exception to all of the above. LCC does not have enough maximum ammunition to kill a monster before it runs out of ammo, thus this is one scenario when IAH may be useful. The crank cannon, on the other hand, will attract monster agro after a few seconds, forcing you to go back to melee to be safe. Assuming your allies are also dishing out some monster damage, the LCC crank gun’s capacity should enough; even if you have to wait a few seconds for your ultimate bar to recharge, it’s unlikely to affect the result.

  • Hordes are the other exception – you could simply throw all your ammunition into a horde, but I don’t think it’s a good tactic on Cata. A quick burst of fire is all it takes to thin out a thick throng. While this may be helpful in certain circumstances, too much shooting at swarms is usually a waste of time and temporary HP.

  • Finally, LCC has much better potions synergy. I like to run concoction on OE so that I can provide a burst of damage to patrols or monsters as required, but in any case, having the maximum firing rate immediately away when a potion effect is triggered is critical.

In conclusion:

The resource it supplies (ammo) isn’t a major limiting issue for the crank gun in most circumstances, therefore Innovative Ammo Hoppers isn’t as useful. The availability of targets and personal safety are the two main factors that restrict the usage of crank guns.

For the bulk of the time you use the crank gun, the Linked Compression Chamber is significantly superior since it almost doubles the DPS.

What are your thoughts on this?

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