Note to devs reading: While I do think that this would a right step towards a better game balance in general and supports in particular, be aware that this would take a fair amount of programming and have a big initial impact that would need rebalance. (Like 5.0 changes)
Edit: See at post #29 for more clarification on the acual coding changes that I have in mind.
So I just discovered that the 40% Capacity perk is in every way superior to the 30% reload perk regarding the following weapons and tools: Val’s Medgun, Hank’s Shieldprojector, Cabot’s Amplifier, Sunny’s Shielddrone, Sunny’s Jetpackbooster, Jack’s Repulsor and Markov’s Lightninggun.
What it does is, of course, increase the Capacity to 140%. What it does also is scale the recharge rate. It takes the same amount of time to recharge 100% without a perk as it takes to recharge 140% with the capacity perk. This means that the recharge rate is increased by 40% as compared to the 30% of the reload perk.
Now I am aware that the reload perk also decreases the reload time of other things but still, I would have expected for the higher capacity to take longer to recharge, for the recharge rate would stay the same.
A very simple suggestion is: Leave the recharge rate the same. So that it takes longer to get to the 140%.
A more complicated suggestion is: Give each weapon a recharge rate unaffected by the capacity, meaning that capacity would effectively increase the reload time too. Maybe buff the capacity back to 50% to balance it out.
Even more complicated: Allow every weapon to recharge while hold in the hand and not firing. (No reload animation). This would prevent having let’s say a Flamethrower with capacity being stuck in reload for 4.9 seconds/ 5.25 seconds (40% and 50%). Of course with a delay (1.5 seconds?) and probably taking longer to fully reload than going through the reload animation which would remain uninteruptable.
The most complicated
Edit: The monst complicated slightly simplified:
Add a virtual capacity (VC) to Shields, JPB, Amp and Repulsor. Whenever the actual Capacity (AC) is lower than the VC, the VC starts draining at a consistent rate. The weapon can not recharge until VC is lower/equal the AC. During the recharge, both AC and VC recharge the same amount. Everything else stays the same.
But I am not stopping here. There is another idea that I have in mind regarding Capacity Equality:
The weapons mentioned above have one thing in common: They can be used during reload. What they do not have in common is, that some need a set amount of time to empty, others can be emptied almost immediatly, cancelling the unload time, which is increased by capacity by the other weapons.
The unload time of the Medgun, the Lasercutter and the Lightninggun are proportional to the capacity. To some degree the Jetpackbooster is too, being the time needed to perform a Jetpackdodge.
But the shields, the Amp and the Repulsor can be emptied very quickly, meaning they start to reload almost instantly. Here is my suggestion to fix this:
The Repulsor already has this: A small capacity drain when used but not doing anything. This should be applied to each of the weapons mentioned. (I think this has been the case for the shield projector in the Alpha but was removed because of skill gap, but keep reading, I am getting somewhere).
This small capacity drain would in fact drain each weapon in a set amount of time if it does litteraly nothing. This time would increase proportinally with capacity. Now it looks like a massive skill gap, right? Yes, it does, but that was not all. This time would be the new delay before recharging. That means the following:
Edit: After looking at the unload time of the red repulsor beam, which is around 14 seconds, this does seem to high to me as a set unload time. If you let the monster waste 2 traversals and some walking into the repulsor (I believe that is more or less accurate) and lets say this takes 1 second for each traversal and 0.5 seconds for the walking until the repulsor is empty. Adding the 1 second recharge delay this results in a unload time of 3.5 seconds. Looking at this, I change the suggestion to 7 seconds, meaning that after 50% of the unload time of the red beam, the recharge delay is cancelled.
The following example was edited too:
For instance, the new shield drain would drain it in 15 seconds if applied to a hunter but without shielding damage.
This means when the full capacity is drained in 5 seconds, the Hank player would have to wait another 2.5 seconds for it to start recharging again (5 +2.5 = 7.5 = 15 * 0.5).
If the shield absorbs damage worth of 50% of its capacity, you would have to wait until 3.75 seconds have passed since activation before it recharges again.
Emptying 50% of the capacity by not absorbing damage and then instantly absorbing damage worth of 50% capacity would result in no recharge delay, since the shield was active for 7.5 seconds.
Regarding the skill gap, it would of course punish the Hanks that shield an unattacked player, but to be fair, this misbehaviour should be mildly punished, shouldnt it? Its the same with Jacks repulsor now, isn’t it? Looking at the high level play, this would result in more time when hank cant shield, it would actually be rewarding for the Monster to burst through the shield because it would increase its off-time, where as right now bursting through the shield just starts the recharge earlier, resulting in even more shields.
To make it more clear:
Bursting down a shield -> more shields per time and lasercutter during relaod, same time of shield free hunters
Wearing a shield down slowly -> Less amount of shields per time, more punish time from the assault, same time of shield free hunters, more time for healburst to recharge
OR: focus Hank through an Orbital and Cloak
With the change:
Bursting down a shield -> Same amount of shield per time, more lasercutter, more time of shield free hunters
Wearing down a shield -> Same amount of shield per time, less time of shield free hunters, more time for healburst to recharge, same amount of assault punish time
OR: focus Hank through Orbital and Cloak
In other words: Using the Shield to protect from high burst damage would rewarded by more damage instead of more shielding per time.
Similar examples can be found for the Repulsor and the Amp. It would also bring a recharge punishment for using all boost of the Jetpack booster at once during the chase. If you want you can say it is a capacity per time usage cap.
At least from my eyes this looks more healthy to the meta which is dominated by shields right now.
Regarding Reload speed and the new recharge delay I have not yet made up my mind whether it should be affected.