Have you tried weapons that do Fire, Cryo, Poison, Rad, or Bleed damage? If you equip the Awareness card in Perception, you can see enemy Damage Resistances of all types in Vats. This Damage Resist scales with your level and enemy level. I'm going to skip Rad and Bleed because Cryo, Poison, and Fire was painful enough.
Now the main issue is that most enemies have ALL Damage Resistances. And they aren't small numbers. The higher the level, the stronger the enemy. This means as a lower level, your elemental weapons will do better. The issue with that being you can't get most of these weapons or mods early on where they would be more useful based on current damage scaling.
Here I'll list some DR of enemies while above level 50.
Level 100 Super Mutant Gladiator 300 Fire, Cryo, Poison.
Level 75 Super Mutant Warlord 258 Fire, Cryo, and Poison.
Level 60 Super Mutant Overlord 200 Fire, Cryo, and Poison.
Level 60 Mutant Hound 40 Fire, Cryo, and Poison.
Level 75 Blood Eagle Flayer 0 Fire, Cryo, Poison.
Level 60 Machinegun Turret Mark VII 25 Fire, Cryo, 0 Poison.
Level 100 Scorched Annihilator 100 Fire, Cryo, Poison.
Level 75 Scorched Conqueror 100 Fire, Cryo, Poison.
Level 60 Scorched Leader 100 Fire, Cryo, Poison.
Level 75 Scorchbeast 183 Fire, Cryo, Poison.
Through testing my Strangler Heart Power Armor at max level, 4 Poison Damage/s on Nearby Enemies is inconsistent on moving the Enemy Health bar and nonexistent in some cases. You can visibly see and hear the effect on the Enemy. The ranged damage of 50 Poison per hit is also not noticeable in most cases. So for the sake of making it easy, we will say it is both bugged and reduced by most Enemy Poison DR being extremely high.
A level 50 bow Poison arrow does 6 Poison damage on this build. That's 36 damage over 7 Seconds. A level 1 bow Poison arrow does 2 Poison damage. That's 12 damage over 7 seconds. The damage is mostly negligible except on the lower level. The max level, just like Strangler, has issues hurting enemies with 0 Poison DR. You most likely won't hurt them with poison majority.
A level 50 Fire arrow bow does 5 Fire over 5 seconds for 25 Fire damage in total. A level 1 Fire arrow bow does…..wait for it……also 5 damage over 5 seconds for 25 total Fire Damage! Makes total sense right?
Let's add in the Molotov at 113 Fire damage. It lasted 5 seconds, couldn't tell damage on myself due to healing factor. I guess assume 113 damage total over 5 seconds. Already out damaging the bows if true. Except…..you won't notice the damage on enemies at max level.
Pyro Crusader does 25 Fire over 5 seconds for 125 total I assume. Mostly unnoticeable.
Floater flamer does 310 Fire over 4 seconds. Barely noticeable.
Cryo Arrows do not even do Cryo Damage, just freeze slowdown. The Cryo Crusader does 20 Cryo over 5 seconds for 100 Cryo Damage. Also includes freeze slowdown. Really noticeable for some reason.
Floater Freezer does 208 Cryo, slowdown for 8 seconds. Cryo Grenade does 210 Cryo, pretty much identical to the Floater Freezer.
Hellstorm with Fire and Cryo is pretty good, but most damage comes from physical to enemies. Fire is very weak here.
On the other end of the spectrum you have the Flamer and Cryolator. Flamer at 54 Fire damage per hit, unknown over time. Cryolator does 51 Cryo per hit, slowdown over time. These two have high DPS, which makes their low damage add up to immense damage quickly.
Wouldn't be fair without PvP in here. Cryo and Fire do amazing PvP damage because players have a challenge resisting elemental. All we have is +25 elemental Legendary on armor, Arctic Marine for Cryo (Daily OP RNG and sucks mostly), and Legendary Funky Duds and Sizzling Style capping at 200 DR of Poison and Fire, respectively.
To wrap it up where it's wrong: Enemies have too high Elemental resist. At max level, enemies have almost all elemental resistance types. This makes them weakest to Ballistic and Energy damage. That makes very little sense when the elemental damages are mainly found in endgame. They are hard to get like the Crusader and Hellstorm being RNG in Daily Ops. The Strangler Heart being endgame and take multiple weeks to get enough scrip to build, and now reroll for months. The exceptions being Flamer and Cryolator spawning at level 30 and 25 respectively, but having too resource intensive ammo for those levels of players.
How to fix: Each enemy needs elemental resist and elemental weakness. This is a complete rework of elemental DR on each enemy. Scorched should be tougher to Poison and Fire, while frail to Cryo. Ghouls should be frail to Fire and Cryo, while tougher to Poison. Human enemies should mildly weak to all elements depending on faction Armor choice, and weakest to Poison. Insects of course should be almost immune to poison yet frail to Cryo and Fire. Super mutants should be like hulk with thick skin, where Cryo is weak with Fire doing slightly more, and poison being the strongest. These changes would give you a benefit in using elemental types to kill enemies quicker, and using their weakness elemental to kill them the quickest.
After the enemies are balanced, you have the weapons. Damage should be noticeable. Not 95% of the damage, but a solid 70%. Shooting an enemy with a poison arrow should probably do some damage rather than make them a pretty green. Elemental shouldn't be flashy and expensive without the damage to match. The amount of work put in for Strangler Heart should match the damage. The previous version of Strangler was bad for server stability and did wayyyy too much damage. Now it does almost nothing except bragging rights and a fern skin. Wow. I'd fix the AoE poison to act like Furious, stacking up to 10 with each stack 10 poison damage. Staying close to enemies melts them the longer you stay close. Bullets do damage based on the weapon type. Slow heavy hitting weapons do large Poison DoT while blazing fast weapons do low Poison DoT. Let's say 10 seconds of poison for those too.
If you read these semi coherent ramblings, I thank you. I'm passionate about features being usable, and more players trying new things. Please add additional findings, comments, or critiques. I appreciate feedback and your time. Thank you.
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More about FalloutPost: "Elemental Damage: Why 76 has it wrong and how to fix it." specifically for the game Fallout. Other useful information about this game:
- Sorry to say but Survival difficulty is not for me, should I go Very Hard or do a custom modded difficulty instead?
- A Canadian’s take on a Fallout game set in Canada:
- The good within the evil of Fallout.
- Fallout 76 Update Notes – October 19, 2021
- Fallout could use more diversity when it comes to terrain. What about a fallout further North in the US with brand new terrain? It could offer new story opportunities and world building opportunities
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