Fallout

On The Effectiveness of Armor Piercing Magazines Or: You Should Probably Be Using Armor Piercing Magazines

fallout 5 - On The Effectiveness of Armor Piercing Magazines Or: You Should Probably Be Using Armor Piercing Magazines

The question posed in a couple threads by
xShadow Alienx - On The Effectiveness of Armor Piercing Magazines Or: You Should Probably Be Using Armor Piercing Magazinesu/xShadow-Alienx and
u/JustAnAce was the effectiveness of the armor piercing mags for Gauss and Handmades. With a lot of work and more screws than I can remember I've unlocked pretty much every mod for both guns so I went to work trying to figure it out.

tl;don't want to read, best guess is that Piercing/Stinging is 20-25% tops and Perforating 30%. Full testing follows.

For the following tests I used four identical damage Handmades, one Anti-Armor Assault Rifle and a maxed out Handmade. All testing was done on Watoga robots, level 50, 125 Ballistic and 100 Energy defense. All guns were max level with no other mods except for magazines.

Test Group 1 will be with no Tank Killer and 9/9 Rifleman perks.

Gun A: Short Handmade

  • 72 dmg
  • Drum mag
  • 85 shot capacity

Awareness shows 125 Ballistic resist.

13 shots to kill

Gun B: Armor Piercing Handmade

  • 72 dmg
  • Piercing mag (improved pierce)
  • 10 shot capacity

Awareness does not update resistances for magazine armor piercing values. This is why we can't immediately determine the exact percentage with Awareness in seconds.

12 shots to kill

Gun C: High Capacity Handmade

  • 72 dmg
  • Stinging mag (improved pierce)
  • 35 shot capacity

12 shots to kill

I'll assume that both Stinging and Piercing have identical armor piercing properties, which was expected. The vast ammo improvement however can't be overlooked.

Gun D: Armor Piercing Handmade (perf)

  • 72 dmg
  • Perforating Mag
  • 20 shot capacity

11 shots to kill

So already we can draw a couple conclusions from the very first tests. Perforating is the best all around clip, damage and armor piercing mag and Piercing and Stinging likely have identical values in addition to their other benefits.

Test Group 2: 3/3 Tank Killer

Gun A: Short Handmade

  • 72 dmg
  • Drum mag
  • 85 shot capacity

Awareness now reflects the lowered armor and displays 80.

10 shots to kill

A very interesting test. Tank Killer outperforms the highest grade armor piercing mag with a stock gun. Since it's just a hair off, this leads me to believe the Perforating bonus is just shy of TK's and about 30%.

Gun B: Armor Piercing Handmade

  • 72 dmg
  • Piercing mag (improved pierce)
  • 10 shot capacity

10 shots to kill

I repeated this test twice to make sure. Shots needed did not drop. The value for the improved armor piercing must be fairly low and I'm going to guess 20% based on the fact that this didn't budge. We should also get the same results from the next mag.

Gun C: High Capacity Handmade

  • 72 dmg
  • Stinging mag (improved pierce)
  • 35 shot capacity
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10 shots to kill

Gun D: Armor Piercing Handmade (perf)

  • 72 dmg
  • Perforating Mag
  • 20 shot capacity

9 shots to kill

Finally, some improvement. 30% vs 20% should lower the bot's armor to 56 and 64 respectively, so taking another shot off is respectable.

For the next test I wish I had an Anti-Armor Handmade but alas, I do not (if some generous soul would like to gift me one for science purposes on PS4 my DMs are wiiiiide open). Fear not, your intrepid researcher does have an Anti-Armor Assault Rifle. Through trickery I was able to get the damage almost identical to our test Handmades at 75. Let's see what Anti-Armor can do.

Test 1: No TK

Gun: AA Assault Rifle

  • 75 dmg
  • Standard mag

Awareness shows 62 Ballistic resist, perfectly in line with 50% reduction from 125.

10 shots to kill, very fucking close to being 9

The AA almost matched the TK+Perf mag's best shot right off the bat. This further reinforces my theory that Perf is 30%. Whatever it is, it absolutely has to be higher than 50% because it outdid the AA bonus by itself, along with doing slightly less damage. This makes 66% very likely (and remember it doesn't stack, so it's actually 125 x .64 x .7 and not 125 x .34).

Test 2: 3/3 TK

Gun: AA Assault Rifle

  • 75 dmg
  • Standard mag
  • 3/3 TK

Awareness shows the deep fall in armor: 40 Ballistic resist. This again is perfect math, 125 x .50 x .64 = 40.

8 shots to kill

I expected it to jump down, it was almost 9 last time. For the last test we'll really break the system and add in Perforating.

Test 3: AA + TK + Perf

Gun: AA Assault Rifle

  • 75 dmg
  • Perforating mag
  • 20 shot capacity

Awareness will not reflect the final value obviously but we can estimate the resist to be a paltry 28 if our Perforating mag is indeed 30%. I'm expecting to knock off another shot at least.

7 shots to kill

There you have it. A combined 50%+36%+~30% AP will cut your shots just about in half. For the tests though I gimped the Handmade's damage by leaving out a Hardened Receiver. I was also leaving off 3/3 Bloody Mess which I typically use to enhance all my damage. Since I was also curious how a maxed out Handmade would perform against a lowly AA Assault Rifle, I did a bonus round of testing with my Vampire Handmade, my go to gun.

Test 1: No TK

Gun: Vampire's Handmade

  • 103 dmg
  • Drum mag

8 shots to kill

Interesting result. Even with much higher base damage, it doesn't blow the AA Assault out of the water.

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Test 2: 3/3 TK

Gun: Vampire's Handmade

  • 103 dmg
  • Drum mag

7 shots to kill

Well now I'm a bit shook. I was expecting better tbh and considering how much armor could potentially be ignored by the AA Assault I'm wondering if I should can the Handmade.

Let's make it a bit more even.

Test 3: 3/3 TK + Perforating

Gun: Vampire's Handmade

  • 103 dmg
  • Perforating mag

6 shots to kill

Well that makes me feel a little bit better. I do like the 85 shots in the drum mag but honestly it's overkill most of the time. I will take the better damage/AP over the extra shots and that'll be my mag from now on.

CONCLUSIONS

Anti-Armor is the shit and you should stack as much of it as possible. If you feel like the Perforating has too few shots for whatever piece you're using, Stinging is a very viable drop off that might cost you one shot if you aren't using a behemoth of a rifle.

By themselves the anti armor mags don't break the game but do keep in mind 125 isn't a huge amount to get through. I expect higher amount of armor to be more and more beneficial where that 30% will matter. Tune in next week when your friend Reeds goes Scorchbeast/Deathclaw/Gulper/all manner of things guaranteed to wreck his armor hunting to see what they can do. I'll also be using a human test dummy in PA as soon as possible.

Comments, feedback welcome!

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