Plasma vs Railgun vs Laser

Rapid, Heavy, Long.


What are your preferences, and why?

Rapid Fire Plasma on all interceptors since the lack of overheating and high DPS makes it a superior dogfighting weapon.


Pulse Lasers on my fighters due to the pinpoint high damage which helps compensate for this ship class’s sluggishness.  


Hail Plasma on my frigates because it hits like a freight train and does fantastic burst damage.  The other two overheat far too quickly for how little damage they do.



Railguns in general need a massive amount of buffs.  The spread, overheating, and low damage are just too many downsides for that weapon class to have to make them worth using.  Long Range Lasers beat out the railguns in sheer range and are hitscan making the sniper railgun a waste of time.  The Assault Laser is only just slightly shorter in range than the Assault Railgun making it a clearly better alternative, and the Rapid Fire Railgun does pathetic DPS.  The charge ability takes far too long and does too little damage for the time it takes.  Railguns should generate next to no heat and be the longest range option if you want to keep them at the DPS rate they are.


I have not yet experimented with Heavy Railguns, mostly because all of the other rails are so bad that I have no interest in spending the money on one.

On a Fighter I go the 4K range laser for shooting Interceptors before they can kite me.  

I lurk a lot to avoid face-on fights with other Fighters and Frigates.  

I also use 3 Command Modules so surviving for assists is a good idea.  


Used to use Rapid Plasma on my Interceptors for the damage, experimenting with Pulse Lasers for killing other Interceptors atm.  

Jury is still out, got passive spread reduction feels like I need more.  I should find a DPS meter as accuracy’s effect is hard to judge.  


Tried out Rails with the shield stealing ability.  

Could not seem to hit, no idea what was going on.  


Frigates I spend most of my time in a Disintegrator.  Anything works.  

I only play Frigates for Contracts, not like they impact the game much.  

If they can reliably hit my Interceptor I’ll happily shake their hand, I’ll still capture/kill their captain/bomb quite reliably.  


I wouldn’t go hunting a Frigate without Plasma or Rails but then the rare occasion one is keeping me off an objective it evaporates pretty quick from team mates.  

Rapid fire (shot) railguns for interceptors, its like smacking someone in the face when full charge.

Assault weapons, they are good overall compared to the other weapons.

Rapid fire plasma for scenarios or brawling in arcade.

I tried out all the weapons and they all seem pretty good actually, heavy weapons do a ton of damage, long range works quite well with their fast projectile travel time and their long range but the damage is mainly determined on how much resistances and regain your target has, it can be quite effective though. Assaults are overall good, I cant say no to any of them aside from the specialties the other weapons have. Rapid fire weapons are perfect for dog fighting.

Plasma being good for scenarios, I sometimes think the darn weapons are just too effective. Railguns are nice with the damage and accuracy they have. As for lasers being my most favored, they all just seem to work quite similar to one another.

I mostly fly Frigates. I use Assault Lasers at T2 and have decent success with them. At Tier 3, assault lasers become almost completely worthless, so I use Heavy lasers instead.


I have experimented with Heavy Railguns, but found them severely lacking. They just don’t move fast enough for long range fire, and tracking up close is absolutely horrible. So they either need a boost in rate of fire, projectile speed, or tracking to really be competitive with lasers.


Simple fact is, the lasers do less burst damage, but have more consistent damage over time with hitscan and no spread. Heavy railguns are only competitive in a situation where you have a near-motionless target that is already in hull and can be one-shot with a solid hit. In any other situation, I would choose lasers, hands down.


Plasma has been alright, but doesn’t have the range and accuracy I need in a frigate.


Frankly, I want to use Railguns, but they’re just not viable on frigates right now.

Right now i fly 3 Frigs & 1 Intceptor . My Fed Frig “Anaconda M” uses my much loved Hail Plasma , modified to 8900 m Range ( so no range probs here :wink: ). It rips shield apart and with dmg change to kinetic the hull also. Most pro , in dogfights you can Rapid fire.

The empire one “Garm” is fitted with Stab. Rail , also fitted to around 8600 or more m , dunno right now , cause is also good usable in dogfights . It Takes a bit to Strip the shields down , but for that i’ve the time while the enemy is Stil Far away. When it comes to hull … well it’s a kinetic weapon ;). Both of these Frigs are fitted with repair support modules for me and my team . So i can go alone AND when surrounded by team help them. And both use warpgate to improve mobility.

My Jericho Frig " Crus S" uses hvy Lasers + propulsion inhibitor + Pulsar + minefields . A mean combination for getting in mid of battle. So the inhibitor is for compenstion of the Slow turrets turn in dogfights .

My interceptor uses Rapid fire plasma , it feels best on it with the ability to switch to kinetic. And he’s equipped for max crit chance , 47% ( i know with rails is more possible) and speed .

I mention my equips , cause i think all together ( weapons, modules, passives) is it what makes the certain Parts work well . And you can combine it as you wish to make it feel good to YOU !! E.g. : hvy plasma , no matter how i equip my ships which uses this , i can’t make them work for ME , though i see people which use them awfully well :wink:

Ps : sry for the bunch of text ;(

With the ability to change damage types, why would you pick anything other then lasers or plasma?  Plasma seems especially good, since it can hit the two weakest resist types at any time, em for shields then ke for hull.

Railguns in general need a massive amount of buffs. The spread, overheating, and low damage are just too many downsides for that weapon class to have to make them worth using.

The biggest nail in the coffin of railguns is weapon mods. Both plasma and lasers have the ability to deal EM damage for stripping shields (plasma can deal EM and kinetic, lasers can deal thermal and EM) whereas rail’s weapon mods are kinetic and thermal, meaning that it has no effective way to remove shields. So unless you’re facing a ship with its shields already removed, the railgun is at a serious disadvantage.

In my opinion, plasma shouldn’t be able to deal kinetic damage. It should be EM and thermal. Giving plasma the ability to exploit the weakness of both shields and hull makes them the obvious ideal choice of weapon. The only real reason to choose lasers over plasma is for the hitscan nature of the weapon, which railguns lack, and making railguns the only weapon capable of dealing kinetic damage (I mean, they ARE the only non-energy based weapons) would make them the go-to weapon of choice for hull damage, where now plasma outshines it in every respect.

That said, there’s just something about the Stabilized Railguns that I like and I put them on all my Jericho Fighters and Frigates. With a passive ship buff to railgun projectile spread and Acceleration Coils equipped, it’s really not far off from a laser.

I got my first “kill in under X seconds” using a shield stripping mod and railguns.  



I was spending games sitting on a Beacon shooting nothing but Hull in my Interceptor realising my Laser/Plasma team mates were taking the shields off for me.  

Changed to Rails, took the shield stripper mod and I’m quite happy.  

Can’t hurt a Frigate but then I fight on objectives, they can have a Self Destruct for their trouble I’ll be back with my Empy Interceptor before they respawn.  


Only reason I’d go back to Plasma is for 1 on 1 fights where we both have full shields.  

It is the best under laboratory conditions.  


It took a while to appreciate it all but I have a good reason to use each weapon type.  


Plasma was my default for a long time but even with R2 spread reduction implants and Electronic Guidance it seems like Railguns compete for dogfighting even if the numbers are lower on paper.  Pretty much grabbing every spread reduction and projectile speed bonus I can.  


I still run Lasers on Fighers or Frigates to make sure I kill the Interceptors who are winning the game for the enemy.  


Playing mostly Empire I appreciate the loveliness of a hull smaller than your shields, Railguns on kinetic sort out hulls lightening fast providing you can bring them to bear.  

plasma all the way, i use T2 assualt plasma on my fox m and hails on my frigates, pulse lasers are good, but all railguns are garbage unless your the empire and you can use the overdrive and plasmas can have the kinetic changer, which is useful, but for dogfighting rapid plasmas are good, but only for fighters since they dont do enough damage fast enough to be put onto an interceptor

In my Intys i use Assault Plasma or Assault Rails, simple fire power, i dedicate the ships to conservate energy to the ECM abilities and seek to have the natural passive tank enhanced a tad.

The rest of the stuff is guns guns guns and agility.


I don’t go for extremes in speed or tank because ceptors are ceptors, the rapid fire guns don’t produce enough firepower and for dogfighting are interesting but lack some punch, so assault cannons all the way.


In my frig, the Acid Hydra and Cerb2 i have the first one fitted out for long range fights, a couple tank mods and 1 aura module for all, its a sniper / gunship with defensive capabilities, i can use the long range lasers for the most far away targets and in case thing get hawt, mines, pulsar, lasers and missiles help to keep things balanced.


The Cerb2 is more a mid range fighter a frontline thing. Got it with heavy lasers, auras, pulsars, mines, missiles and a ton of resists to add from its natural resistances.


I hardly use Fighters, so far experimenting with the Desert eagle but i’d say it goes the same was as the ceptors, i’ll just pack it with Assault rails or plasma and let it rip. 

Rails need a rather specific build to be effective, mainly as interceptor weapons, so assault or rapid, rapid being the prefered hit and run weapon for interceptors due to the overcharge. They are designed to do damage by critical hits, so you need to stack critical% mods like the L2 Empire implant, the CPU mod and maybe the shaped charge shells. The +50% damage boost for critical hits helps too. That being said, it is still not spectacular, doing an average damage of 3 guns since you get an ~50% chance to do +100% damage, so other than the first strike triple hit, the damage done is still fairly low and needs to be boosted by rockets and missiles.


Personally, I prefer rapid plasma.