Energy type ammunition is a slightly more powerful, more convenient type of ammunition that discharges energy in the form of concentrated blasts of energy or lasers whose intense heat can easily tear through enemies. Although each weapon has a preset reserve of finite power, it takes energy from the AC in order to operate at full power. Because energy weapons do not utilize rounds or magazines, there is no need to pay for refills, as they recharge after a battle, thus making them cost-efficient, although they're relatively costly to purchase. (In For Answer there seems to be a fatal error causing most ranged EN weapons to have quite expensive "shells", some costing over 300 per shot).
Energy weapons often have special models made which have the features of other weapons, such as energy machine guns and laser & pulse rifles with a shotgun spread effect. Some models of energy weapons have become symbols of the Armored Core franchise, including the MOONLIGHT laser blades, and the KARASAWA/CANOPUS Laser Rifles (High-Laser Rifles in Nexus and later).
Types of Energy Weaponry Edit
Lasers are the quintessential energy weapons in Armored Core
- Rifles - The energy counterpart to solid shell rifles. A high efficiency weapon, they discharge laser beams of energy with a medium fire-rate, high power-per-shot, and zero ammunition costs. Laser rifles burn through enemy armor, and are an effective anti-AC weapon. Drawbacks include moderately high energy drain and low projectile velocity (with the exception of AC4 and AC:FA).
- Machine Guns - Only appearing in a few games, the energy Machinegun acts like an energy weapon and is subsequently is classified in this category. They are fairly deadly, more so than their normal counterparts on a shot per shot basis but ultimately they have high drain for non PLUS ACs.
- Shotguns - Energy-firing shotguns, in effect; they have a high spread and high ammunition with decent damage, making them a very good close range weapon. Not seen in AC4 and only one model exists as a hanger sidearm in AC:FA.
- Dual Rifles - Dual laser rifles are regular laser rifles that fire two laser rounds per shot. Only one example of a High-laser variant is seen in AC4. In AC:FA, there is also a back mounted version with more power but lower ammo count and weight .
- High Laser Rifles- A heavier, more powerful version of a laser rifle. Usually have less ammunition, use more energy per shot and fire lower-velocity shots, but do significantly more damage and PA penetration abilities that makes PA almost useless against their blasts. Effectively handheld laser cannons, and the laser equivalent of Bazookas. Seen in Armored Core Nexus and later.
- Cannons - Cannons mounted on the shoulder. Scaled up laser rifles, the laser cannon is a high-output energy cannon that releases thick beams of energy with explosive power, exceeding the power of linear guns, though it does not possess the same destructive ability as a grenade launcher; laser cannons serve as the more ammunition-efficient version alternative to said grenade launchers.
- Multi - A special and rare type of laser cannon with that fires multiple laser cannon shots at once. Drawbacks are high drain and inability to control spread or accuracy of lasers.
Compared to laser weaponry, Pulse weapons trade power for rate of fire and lower drain. Pulse weapons are designed to whittle down enemy defenses while the user can focus on evasion. Arm mounted versions are usually small enough to act as hangar weapons.
- Rifles - The energy counterpart to solid shell handguns, and to an extent, machine guns. Utilizes semi-automatic energy bursts. Their lightweight and inexpensiveness makes them effective as a main weapon. A few models like the ROC4 and XP2000 are on par with other energy weapons making them very effective weapons.
- Shotguns - A rare type of weapon which sprays a wide area with energy, and maintains a high rate of fire. These weapons are limited only by lack of ammo or a very high energy usage. Seen in only ACFA.
- Cannons - The energy equivalent to chainguns, they fire rapid-fire blasts of energy that quickly peck away at armor but steadily consume energy as a result. Their power is high for a pulse weapon.
While pulse cannon trade power for rate of fire, plasma weapons do the opposite, delivering heavier firepower albeit at a slower rate of fire. these work by discharging matter that's super-heated to intense temperature in a "blob" suspended in a magnetic field. Plasma weapons are some of the most devastating weapons in Armored Core with grenade-level power.
- Rifles - The energy counterpart to grenade rifles. They release powerful bursts of energy that explode on impact, dealing a lot of damage but consume quite a bit of energy with each shot. In ACFA, they are shown to have a temporary ECM effect.
- Cannons - As the name suggests, cannons mounted back-mounted weapons. Plasma weapons serve as the energy version of grenades, though they trade the blast radius for zero-cost ammunition that is more mission-friendly.
Special Ballistic weapons that briefly charge up energy before magnetically launching long-range slugs that explode on impact. Their blast delay and almost insane shell velocity makes them ideal sniper weapons, requiring precision to use effectively. In AC4 and ACFA, Railguns cost energy to fire, but is otherwise a solid-shell weapon, unlike its AC:LR counterpart.
Arm-mounted weapons that produce blades made purely of energy. By tacking on a bit more energy, some models can produce waves of energy from the tip of the blade like all EN weapons, they are more efficient the better the arm's EN compatibility.
Shields that produce a laser-like force-field that increases an AC's defense by absorbing damage. It is unique in that it is the only weapon other than a parry blade that it is effective at stopping a laser blade. A key drawback is the energy drain that results in keeping an energy shield functional.
- Unlike Laser Blades and Shields, Rifles and Cannons have a set limit on the number of uses and don't "recharge".
- An explanation for why it does not is rather than being powered by itself the laser's radiator cools the weapon down every time it uses it by taking energy from the AC's Reactor, eventually running out of coolant and rendered useless.
- Another possible explanation comes from the Gundam universe where the weapon stores the majority of the needed energy for each shot in the weapon itself and the energy from the Energy Gauge is just used as the start-up energy to fire it. The number of Shots is therefore the quantified battery compacity available.
- A possible explanation for the expense of Armored Core 4 universe energy rounds could be that due to their higher NEXT power rating, the maintenance needs are more severe and need to covered in paid work.