Helldivers 2 Railgun Nerf and Breaker Nerf Explained

Helldivers 2 Railgun Nerf and Breaker Nerf: How Bad Are They?

Helldivers 2 just got its first major balancing patch, which included a Railgun nerf and a Breaker nerf. These two guns ruled the meta from launch until now, and many players are alarmed that a lack of viable weapons will make higher difficulties impossible. But are the changes to the Breaker and Railgun really that bad? We’ll look at the numbers below.

Helldivers 2 Railgun nerf explained

Helldivers 2 Railgun Nerf

The Railgun nerf is the most controversial change in the latest Helldivers 2 patch. It now has decreased armor penetration and reduced damage against durable enemy parts. Additionally, safe mode is no longer able to penetrate heavy armor. Now, it’ll deflect off enemies like Chargers and Bile Titans. To pierce the armor of these foes, you’ll need to operate the weapon in unsafe mode and overcharge it.

Unfortunately, this nerf makes the Railgun much less powerful than it was previously. Its DPS is a fraction of what it was, and you’ll likely want to look for alternatives. For now, the Flamethrower (which got a 50% damage buff) is more useful for taking down Chargers, and the Autocannon is better when taking on Automatons.

On the official Arrowhead blog, Head of Product Testing Patrik Lasota had this to say about the changes to the Railgun:

“Another one of the current meta weapons enforced by its convenience and efficiency. The Railgun is really intended to be a high powered anti-tank sniper rifle, requiring both timing with the unsafe fire mode and accuracy with where you hit the enemy. It was vastly over-performing in how safe it was to use and how convenient it was, not requiring a backpack or assistance to be effective, and not requiring risk to take out even larger armored targets.

To that end we have changed it so that the safe mode is capable of penetrating medium armor, such as Automaton Scout Walkers, but not more heavily armored enemies like Chargers and Bile Titans. For those targets you now must run it in unsafe mode and overcharge it. In addition we reigned in the Railguns ability to damage massive body parts, meaning to get any real efficiency out of it you must score hits on heads and other weak points.

We are aware it rose to prominence as part of other anti-tank weapons not being as convenient or efficient in comparison. We are monitoring the situation closely and will adjust more based on how this change plays out.”

Helldivers 2 Breaker nerf explained

Helldivers 2 Breaker Nerf

The nerf to the Breaker in the latest Helldivers 2 patch was less severe than that to the Railgun. Magazine capacity was lowered from 16 to 13, and recoil was increased from 30 to 55. The fewer rounds per magazine is a bummer. However, the recoil is still manageable if you’re firing in semi-auto mode.

You may want to consider the Breaker Spray&Pray variant as it got buffed for this patch. Armor penetration was increased, fire rate was improved from 300rpm to 330rpm, and pellets per shot were increased from 12 to 16. However, the magazine capacity was reduced from 32 to 26, and the damage rating is still lower than the standard Breaker.

Lasota had this to say about the Breaker nerf:

“The Breaker was quickly pinned down as the “meta” weapon, vastly overperforming other weapons and being the “best” choice for all Helldivers, at least if YouTube is to be believed. Helldivers veterans will remember the Breaker from the first game and how powerful it was, something we have made an effort to mimic in this game as well.

When we looked at the Breaker and the data we have on its usage it painted a picture of a well liked weapon that was great at killing chaff and generally had a few more kills than other weapons. It was however not necessarily better at making you succeed in a mission, and no real damage nerfs were warranted. The calculated total damage per magazine was quite high compared to other weapons however, and something that could be reigned in, while reinforcing the intended fantasy.

The fantasy of the Breaker is a powerful automatic shotgun that bucks wildly as you hose down targets in front of you. It should be deadly up close, with high DPS and its major drawback should be ammunition management and pacing your fire so as not to overshoot a target. To that end we have lowered the amount of shells in each magazine and increased the recoil.”

Many players aren’t pleased with this round of balances. Unfortunately, Charger spawns haven’t been lowered to compensate for the Railgun nerf, so those playing on higher difficulties are in for a frustrating time until a new meta takes hold.

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