Brawler of the week - "The Shotgun"

Sir, do you have a moment to talk about the Word of Blake?
I have been working on my Shadowhawks recently, trying to elite the variants I didn't play much with. Finally, I've elited all of them so I can finally enjoy the one I like the most, the 2D2.

Now, syncing of weapon cycles is a very dangerous thing in MWO. PPC and Gauss once had perfect synchronization before the heat scale and many PPC/Gauss nerfs, resulting in perfect 45 damage combos every 4 seconds which completely obliterated anything in a few shots. ML's and LPL's used to sync pretty well(duration+cooldown matched), and I used them to great effect in my Awesomes. Since then, LPL's got a slight buff and they desynced as well.

One pair still remains though, which might be something you're unaware of, the LBX and SRM2 combo. At 2.5 seconds per cycle, they sync up nicely. Then again, who uses SRM2's anyway? Though, if you have a lot of missile hardpoints, the picture quickly changes. SRM2's don't suffer from heat scale and together with LBX-10's, they make a great, facemelting pair.

So, you get the idea. Take 2D2, cram 4xSRM2's, one LBX-10AC, 2xSL's for heat management moments, an XL280 for decent mobility, 3xJJ's, 13xDHS' to cool them all nicely and enough ammo to break 1000 damage with a few more to spare. Which leaves us with this:

This pretty much makes for a perfect medium brawler, because it's all so simple. You find a meaty target, select a component to destroy and let go of your 26 damage shotgun. You immediately look away, preferably jumpjetting (going over them is a great confuser by the way), and as soon as your cycle finishes you take another shot to the same area. Rinse and repeat, never stop moving and jumpjetting. After you open the internals which will only take 2-3 shots, the LBX starts doing insane damage with crits. Switch to LBX+SL's if you find yourself in those ultra-long brawls for heat efficiency.

It's also a great close range poptart for those close stand-offs in Caustic, Frozen City and Crimson Bay thanks to all high mounted weapons. You will have to work your positioning magic on bigger, longer range maps like Alpine and Terra Therma though.

So, how does this work in PUGs? If you master the 2.5s of cycle time and learn to protect your big CT, at close range, you're pretty much superior to everything, except insane ballistic builds like 4xAC5, 3xUAC5 and AC40. Closing range with poptarts is very important, which inside 90m's, make for amusing meals as their AC5's can't keep up with the mobility of this build.


  • Devastating at close range when you get into rhythm
  • Excellent mobility for a brawler with a big AC
  • Shadowhawk is very survivable
  • Good poptart buster if you catch them alone
  • Spread damage only
  • No long-range weapons
  • 6 tons of ammo all over your mech
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About Rak

I'm an engineer who likes to write extremely long articles about games that border simulation and mainstream.
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