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It’s sometimes said that the most dedicated warriors pour their heart and soul into their weapons. Gunners that practice the art of Trigger Magic do just that, using their own blood in special rounds and powder blends to transform their sidearms into occult implements.
The Gunner is capable of runs of intense damage output followed by very little while his weapons cooldown. For this reason, the Gunner's greatest needs are Steam, Cooldown and Attack Speed. Steam Leech is also important to keep his tanks filled. Critical and Impact are useful to increase the peak of his output.
At some point it occurred to me to wonder what kind of return on investment I was getting on my Steam. Just how much damage was each point of steam generating. So I started building this table to answer that question. I am using the median damage of the damage range given. So if the damage was 50-100 the value I use here would be 75.
The formula used here is: ((min_damage + max-damage) / 2) / steam
|Ability||Damage per Steam|
|Rank 1||Rank 2||Rank 3||Rank 4||Rank 5||Rank 6||Rank 7||Rank 8|
|2||Mortar Shot †||48.41|
|4||Caustic Splash †|
|Incendiary Round †||1.884|
|6||Flare Shot †||1.151|
† These abilities are AE attacks and would need to multiply the average damage by the number of targets affected before dividing by Steam to arrive at a true Damage/Steam value. For many of these, the number in (parentheses) assumes that you hit at least three targets. Actual use may be lower or much higher. For the rest, just multiply the Damage/Steam by the number of targets and that will be very close to the true value.
Standard Attack is the only ability that does not consume Steam, so it's efficiency is 100%. The value, above, is the average damage.
Proximity Mines and Sentry Cannon cannot be evaluated because we do not have damage numbers for them.
If we could know the exact casting time (which we can't because it is effected by Attack Speed) we could add the cooldown (Which is affected by Cooldown) and work that into the above number to derive a true DPS, but we really can't.
Conclusions: As you can see, Damage/Steam goes down as Rank goes up. Cooldown (not shown) does go down slightly as Rank rises, but not enough to offset the loss of Damage/Steam. At rank 1 you get better Damage/Steam but DPS will suffer slightly. There is probably a sweet spot for each skill where the two balance out but without the ability to analyze true DPS we will probably never find it.
One conclusion is easy to reach... Mortar Shot should be your go-to ability, fired the moment it re-loads.