Just returning top the game really, and I returned to Nullsec, pulled out the Railgun ship but for some reason even at optimal range Hybrid rails seem to be lacking the punch they once had, and even with most gunnery skills at level 4 to 5 , I have not reached Specialization in them yet it barely can keep up with the shield rate recharge of any pirate faction I am facing.
Was there a change to hybrids that have left them in the current state, or is it time to re allocate them into another weapons system.
The problem with hybrids has always been that they’re on both ends of the extreme. Very close range with insane damage, or very long range and terrible damage. This means that anywhere in between, hybrids are a poor weapon choice when compared to the other weapon systems, particularly for PvE.
What he said, and then conclude from there… Get into range, drop as much tank as you can and fit mag stabs into the lows. Fit a MJD and an AB into the mids, add a tracking computer for even more range or to add tracking, and then kite your targets.
For PvE the tactic is then to jump with the MJD away, drop some trash into space to get a can, orbit with AB around the can (to reduce incoming missile damage), and snipe all as it approaches. And if you have, drop sentries, too.
When you have already other weapon systems trained and you now want to use rails for PvE then don’t. It’s a waste of training time when you have other weapon systems trained high up.
For PvP depends… ask your FC if rails are somehow needed for fleet ops, but I’d also say no here. It’s too much of an extreme and when you don’t need to fly every possible ship then you can skip rails.
I have been a Gallente / Caldari pilot on almost all my toons throughout my time in Eve, ultimately I can fly all ships, but those 2 are my staple. So I think I can chime in here for a bit and tell you my opinion based on my experiences. Note that I am focusing on averages, not situational exceptions.
So, here goes. I think hybrids overall kinda suck. Exception here goes to PvP blaster boats. PvP blaster boats are OK due to their burst, really quick DPS and blasters themselves have pretty decent tracking so they require relatively little in terms of tracking modules on fits. In addition a lot, if not most of the times your target will be webbed, thus eliminating the need for tracking modules all together.
Reasons that hybrids suck:
Rail fits do not deliver long range DPS at the same ranges, lack tracking, etc. Sure you can fit a ship to keep up DPS and application wise with other weapon systems, but you have to dedicate far more slots to it, vs. other available options where you have comparible DPS with with slots left over for utility / tank.
Blaster fits are good for super short range DPS burst, but not good for long term engagements. They eat a little too much cap and are extremely short range. Using them on hulls without optimal or even falloff bonusses forces you to come too close to your targets. When you are within optimal, you can’t speed tank because of the super tight turns or orbits necessary to maintain optimal. This here is the biggest downfall of blasters to me. Sure you can equip stuff with + optimal, but you can use other weapon systems without having to do so, again, retaining more free slots for other things.
Rail fits vs small close targets are horrible. Completely horrible vs other weapon types. You have to constantly string your targets at long ranges or you can’t hit them. That is on top of their already lower DPS.
Hybrids, both blasters and rails, completely lack ammo types. I seriously think CCP should add precision hybrid ammo of some sort, and different damage type of ammo of some sort. And very significantly up the damage on tungsten, irridium, plutonium ammo etc. Alternatively, if the funky currently available ammo types retain their super low DPS then they should provide hell of a tracking bonus, but they do not.
IMHO they also need to have their cap consumption significantly reduced to better pair up with active rep ships for longer engagements.
So outside of some situational stuff like incursion Vindis etc. they are overall just not good.
I think lasers are the overall worst of all weapon platforms in Eve and hybrids are 2nd worst. That is just my 2 cents.