Warframe

Relative Effectiveness of Heat, Viral and Corrosive (vs highly armored enemies)

Warframe9 - Relative Effectiveness of Heat, Viral and Corrosive (vs highly armored enemies)
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I know there have been various posts by the community exploring the question of whether viral or corrosive is now better, but I couldn't find something to answer my specific question for (now) higher level content. Namely, what combination of these three elements deals the most damage? Since I did this for my own curiosity and interest anyway, I thought I may as well share it.

TL;DR at end

I took the approach of calculating effective HP (EHP) as a percentage of the total starting EHP of the enemy. Since the toughest enemies by consensus seem to be corrupted heavy gunners and corrupted bombards, they were used as examples. I've used level 100 (eg. high level lich mission) and level 150 with +150% steel path modifiers (2.5x hp and 2.5x armor).

8UXBlce - Relative Effectiveness of Heat, Viral and Corrosive (vs highly armored enemies)


This first image shows the EHP with various stacks, not taking into account health/armor class advantages/penalties. Useful to get a general idea and if you're using a high status weapon to prime for another (eg. condition overload). For multiple status effects, I've assumed even proccing of each stack for simplicity (ie for heat/corrosive 2 stacks means 1 of each, and for heat/corrosive/viral, 6 stacks means two of each)

Observations:

  • Viral starts significantly better than corrosive at low stacks (unsurprisingly), with corrosive catching up only at many stacks.
  • Heat seems great bang for the buck if you've got a weapon that only procs occasionally and probably won't stack.
  • Heat and Viral starts off much better than corrosive + heat at low stacks, with the latter barely catching up by 9-10 stacks of each.
  • If you can get corrosive+viral (intrinsic damage of either on the weapon), this combo starts off similar to heat+corrosive, but at many stacks becomes the most effective. May be useful for very high status and hit/fire rate weapons.
  • Similar to above, heat+corrosive+viral is hard to get, but unsurprisingly the best.
  • Steel path modifiers changes things barely at all (corrosive is very slightly more effective)

For something more complex,
ikIMTU4 - Relative Effectiveness of Heat, Viral and Corrosive (vs highly armored enemies)


this is ferrite and
8CLVAsa - Relative Effectiveness of Heat, Viral and Corrosive (vs highly armored enemies)
this is alloy armor taking into account health and armor class effectiveness. For simplicity (again), I've assumed even proportion of damage from IPS vs each status. For example, "Heat" means 16.7% impact, 16.7% puncture, 16.7% slash and 50% heat. Heat + viral is 11.1% each IPS, 33.3% heat and 33.3% viral damage.
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More observations:

  • For ferrite:
    • By comparison to the base chart, corrosive is much closer to viral at low stacks now, with break-even at 7-8 stacks and corrosive better after that. Still fairly close though, and heat is great as a single stack still. This is due to corrosive double dipping on +75% damage and -75% armor penetration – it's so good against ferrite.
    • Similarly, heat+viral still beats out heat+corrosive at low stacks, but the difference is not huge, and similar by the end.
    • Shoutout to corrosive/viral and particularly H/C/V which is great.
  • For alloy however:
    • The corrosive damage bonus is completely gone, so neutral effectiveness means low stacks of corrosive is almost useless compared to viral or heat.
    • Any loadout with corrosive is beaten out by any loadout with viral instead, due to lack of corrosive type bonus against cloned flesh or alloy
    • Interestingly, corrosive + viral is worse than heat + viral in this case. The triple is best as usual.

TL;DR – My takeaways:

  • As a single element which only occasionally, procs, heat is great (instant armor mitigation to double your damage, heat also procs damage tics itself, not taken into account in my calcs)
  • For high level, highly armored enemies, viral beats out corrosive almost always, and when it doesn't, the difference isn't huge, and usually at high stacks only.
    • I can only imagine that for lower armored enemies viral is miles better
  • I haven't simulated for very long endless runs and how those scale – someone can play with the spreadsheet if they're interested – I would be surprised if the results are much different.

edit?usp=sharing - Relative Effectiveness of Heat, Viral and Corrosive (vs highly armored enemies)


This is a link to the google sheet I used to calculate these, in case anyone wants to play around (just make a copy via google drive). You can change armor/hp, type effectiveness, damage distribution if you wish!

Please let me know if you think I've made any errors in calculations, or what (of the many) assumptions I've made which skew the results in practice!

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