Helldivers 2 update patch notes: Breaker & Railgun nerfed in weapon balance changes

Helldivers 2

Helldivers 2 has launched its first significant balance patch bringing a bunch of weapon changes, fixes and enhancements.

Helldivers 2, the cooperative shooter that pits players against alien forces in a bid for intergalactic democracy, is all about strategy, teamwork, and the right choice of weaponry. With its diverse arsenal, players can choose their preferred tools of war to suit their play style and the challenges they face on alien worlds.

The game’s first major balance patch, which addresses player feedback on weapon balance, arrived for PC players on March 6. PS5 players can expect the patch to hit their consoles in the coming days. This patch is a turning point for Helldivers 2, aiming to refine the gameplay experience and ensure every weapon feels viable and unique.

This adjustment phase may initially disrupt your usual loadouts, but it’s designed to enhance the game’s overall balance and diversity. Let’s dive into what this means for your future missions.

Helldivers 2 weapon balance changes

The Helldivers 2 update 01.000.100 patch notes included significant nerfs for the SG-225 Breaker and RS-422 Railgun. Here are all of the weapon balance changes in the update.

  • Breaker: Decreased magazine capacity from 16 to 13, increased recoil from 30 to 55
  • Railgun: Decreased armor penetration, decreased damage against durable enemy parts
  • Flamethrower: Increased damage per second by 50%
  • Laser Cannon: Increased damage against durable enemy parts, increased armor penetration, improved ergonomics
  • Punisher: Increased total ammo capacity from 40 to 60, increased stagger force, increased damage from 40 per bullet to 45 per bullet
  • Breaker Spray & Pray: Increased armor penetration, increased fire rate from 300 to 330, increased number of pellets from 12 to 16 per shot, decreased magazine size from to 32 to 26
  • Energy Shield Backpack: Increased delay before recharging
  • 380mm and 120mm Orbital Barrages: Increased duration of the bombardment, decreased spread

Helldivers 2 developer note on weapon balance changes

Helldivers 2 game designer Alex K. posted an update regarding the significant weapon balance changes coming in the March 6 update:

“This is the first round in a never-ending series of balance changes. And we believe it’s important to be completely transparent about our approach to game balance, especially when it comes to weapons and stratagems that you have strong opinions about.

Our goal is to give you a wide range of weapon choices, where each gun has its purpose and none is strictly better than another. Sure, you will have your own favorite, but it should come from your personal preference, not from the universally agreed knowledge of which gun is the strongest. Generally, we balance each item according to its quirks, so if a weapon is very effective at what it does, it should come with significant disadvantages to balance its power.

The AC-8 Autocannon is a good example of a well-balanced weapon: it packs a powerful punch, has a very good range, but requires you to carry an ammo backpack or have a friend assist you. The GL-21 Grenade Launcher is the opposite example. It’s a good general purpose weapon that gives you so much flexibility, it obviously can’t deal too much damage without becoming overpowered.

But weapons that are both powerful and versatile become a no-brainer choiсe during the weapon selection phase. It robs you of your own agency, as stale “meta” builds force you to make an unfair choice between a fun weapon and an effective one. In short: Powerful weapons can’t be too versatile, versatile weapons can’t be too powerful.
Having said all that, after analyzing player feedback and the data we’ve collected over the past month, we found three biggest offenders of that principle:

  • SG-225 Breaker
  • RS-422 Railgun
  • SH-32 Shield Generator Backpack

All three of those were quite strong with too little downsides, overshadowing all other options on higher difficulty levels. So with this patch, they’re getting significant downsides to balance their power. However, we strongly believe that the changes won’t ruin this build, but rather help the affected items find their place among the other options and stay effective in capable hands.

On a more personal note, I know that having your favorite toy nerfed absolutely sucks. Investing countless hours into mastering a weapon is an incredible dedication from you. which is the main reason we’re making this game in the first place. And then having that weapon weakened feels like a punishment for being too good at the game.

But I implore you not to compare a changed item with its older version, but to evaluate the existing one as it is and see if it still has a place in your heart.

We thank you for your dedication and commitment to spreading Democracy in the most optimal way possible! Now it’s up to us to make it as fun and entertaining as we can
Oh and we also buffed a bunch of weapons as well!”

Full Helldivers 2 update 01.000.100 patch notes

Besides the weapon balance changes listed above, there were many more updates included in Helldivers 2’s update 01.000.100 patch.

Major Updates

Planetary Hazards active

  • Many planets now have additional environmental challenges that will appear at random while you are deployed, from fire tornadoes to meteor showers and many more.

Balancing

Eradicate Missions

  • Eradicate missions now require more kills and enemies spawn more often. The time to complete the mission was previously shorter than intended and should now usually take twice as long to complete.

Primary, Secondary, & Support Weapons Balancing adjustments made to the following:

  • SG-225 Breaker
  • SG-8 Punisher
  • SG-225SP Breaker Spray & Pray
  • RS-422 Railgun
  • FLAM-40 Flamethrower
  • LAS-98 Laser Cannon

Stratagems Balancing adjustments have been made to

  • Shield Generator Pack
  • Orbital 120MM HE Barrage
  • Orbital 380MM HE Barrage

Fixes

  • Fixed armor rating values not reducing damage as intended.
  • Fixed certain Bug Holes (including Stalker Nests) that were unnecessarily hard to destroy.
  • Fixed anti-aliasing toggle not working on PS5.
  • Balanced lighting across all planets to solve cases where the game was too dark.
  • Improved flashlight efficacy.
  • Increased visibility during “sand rain” weather on Erata Prime.
  • Updated tutorial materials and lighting.
  • Improved cases where some materials could look blurry if “Lighting” graphic setting was set to “Low”.
  • Fixed timing issues that could occur in the “Extract E-710” primary objective.
  • Changed button interaction behavior for buttons in bunker POIs. Helldivers will now let go of the button after holding it for a few seconds.
  • Fixed some cases of large assets floating if the ground beneath them was blown up.
  • Helldivers standing next to ICBMs during launch will get properly toasty with a chance of not-so-spontaneous combustion.
  • Fixed unthrowable snowballs after ragdolling.
  • Fixed being able to use grenades after drowning.
  • Camera no longer locked on the player’s own corpse and blocking spectator mode.
  • Helldivers now take damage from fire, gas etc. generated by other players.
  • Armor no longer stretches when dismembered.

Known Issues

These are issues that were either introduced by this patch and are being worked on, or are from a previous version and have not yet been fixed.

  • Picking up items from caches may cause characters to freeze in place for an extended period of time.
  • Picking up items from bunkers and caches in quick succession may render one of the items unpickable.
  • Players cannot unfriend other players befriended via friend code.
  • Players may be unable to select loadout or return to ship when joining a multiplayer game session via PS5 Activity Card.
  • Occasionally mission reward multiplier may not be applied.
  • Mission objective HUD displays different numbers for client and host during some missions.
  • Default armor is always shown while viewing the warbond, regardless of the armor that player has equipped.
  • Text chat box display is obstructed by the cinematic letterboxing during extraction.
  • Some text in the HUD/UI is missing or not displaying correctly.
  • Players may experience issues when many players attempt to login and/or play at the same time:
    • Login rate limiting
    • Players may become disconnected during play
    • Various UI issues may appear when the game interacts with servers
    • Some games may not be joinable by others for a short period of time

For players, this patch offers an opportunity to rediscover Helldivers 2. Exploring the rebalanced weapons and adapting to the new challenges can breathe new life into the game, encouraging players to find new favorites and experiment with different tactics.

The balance patch for Helldivers 2 is a welcome update that addresses player concerns, enhances gameplay diversity, and encourages a more strategic approach to warfare. As the community adapts to these changes, Helldivers 2 continues to solidify its place as a dynamic and engaging cooperative shooter.

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