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Alpha Damage


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@williewonka5 #1 Posted Jul 09 2011 - 18:26

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Ive heard this term alot and i was just wondering what it ment. My guess is the first damaging shot you inflict on a 100% enemy tank

Swampcrawler #2 Posted Jul 09 2011 - 18:27

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It's actually any first shot, not necessarily on 100%. Like, how much damage you can inflcit before you get the attention. Obviously equal to nominal gun damage. Guns with high alpha usually do better in ambushes and peek-a-boo fights.

Reiter #3 Posted Jul 09 2011 - 18:35

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View Postwilliewonka5, on Jul 09 2011 - 18:26, said:

Ive heard this term alot and i was just wondering what it ment. My guess is the first damaging shot you inflict on a 100% enemy tank
KV tank.  If you see a fat boxheaded turret, thats the second one and it turns slow as hell.  It has two guns, the 152mm with 22 second reload that shoots 700/910 dmg shells where you need to duck/cover between shots while being terribly inaccurate and the second is a long telephone pole 107mm that fires every 8 seconds while being really accurate enough to part the hair on the tail of a squirrel at 500m.  One will hurt like hell with a good chance to one shot some tanks, the other is a repeater that kills lower tier tanks easily and pennetrates even higher tier ones.  Let you figure out which is the alpha gun  B)

Berkeley #4 Posted Jul 09 2011 - 18:50

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View PostReiter, on Jul 09 2011 - 18:35, said:

KV tank.  If you see a fat boxheaded turret, thats the second one and it turns slow as hell.  It has two guns, the 152mm with 22 second reload that shoots 700/910 dmg shells where you need to duck/cover between shots while being terribly inaccurate and the second is a long telephone pole 107mm that fires every 8 seconds while being really accurate enough to part the hair on the tail of a squirrel at 500m.  One will hurt like hell with a good chance to one shot some tanks, the other is a repeater that kills lower tier tanks easily and pennetrates even higher tier ones.  Let you figure out which is the alpha gun  B)

Both, really.

KarateF22 #5 Posted Jul 09 2011 - 18:55

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View PostBerkeley, on Jul 09 2011 - 18:50, said:

Both, really.
Yep, 152 a bit more so though.

Slaphammer #6 Posted Jan 27 2012 - 15:36

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I suspect that "alpha damage" comes from the term "alpha strike" in the Mechwarrior games.  A battlemech has a bunch of different weapons and they all have different firing rates.  If you fire every weapon simultaneously, that's an alpha strike -- typically this is your first shot in a match, before all the weapons get out of sync due to their different reload times.  You might also choose not to shoot your faster weapons until your slower ones are also ready, so that you can hit an opponent with a large alpha strike instead of a series of smaller strikes.

That said, I don't understand why people use the term "alpha" in World of Tanks because you only have one weapon, so every volley you fire has the same damage potential.  It seems to me that "alpha" is meaningless in this game, although people seem to use the term a lot in these forums.

Sickocrow #7 Posted Jan 27 2012 - 15:39

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View PostSlaphammer, on Jan 27 2012 - 15:36, said:

I suspect that "alpha damage" comes from the term "alpha strike" in the Mechwarrior games.  A battlemech has a bunch of different weapons and they all have different firing rates.  If you fire every weapon simultaneously, that's an alpha strike -- typically this is your first shot in a match, before all the weapons get out of sync due to their different reload times.  You might also choose not to shoot your faster weapons until your slower ones are also ready, so that you can hit an opponent with a large alpha strike instead of a series of smaller strikes.

That said, I don't understand why people use the term "alpha" in World of Tanks because you only have one weapon, so every volley you fire has the same damage potential.  It seems to me that "alpha" is meaningless in this game, although people seem to use the term a lot in these forums.

Yeah I reckon it was pilfered from the MW series, and bastardized for use here.  Nothing like blowing limbs off with a quad ER large laser Alpha.

CCC_Dober #8 Posted Jan 27 2012 - 15:58

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MW probably bastardised it as well. Doesn't matter tho.
Alpha or alpha damage, as the guys above mentioned already, is the damage output per shot.
In case of french tanks it refers to the damage of a whole clip, as they can go through shells at an alarming rate.

Several_Sins #9 Posted Jan 27 2012 - 16:05

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Alpha, as far as I'm aware of it describes the damage output on a particular gun - in which there is a minimum and a maximum amount of damage that it can cause. Depends on how much you penetrate the target, and also depends on if you're using AP, APCR or HE. I look at alpha damage as a potential rather than a guarantee, because unless the target has significantly less armor than your penetrating capacity, you're limited to the damage you can inflict.

Tiger 1 has 100mm frontal armor and properly pierced with a D10T 100mm soviet gun (175 pen, 230dmg), it will do all of the 230dmg. If the Tiger is angled, it may only do 115 etc, or just bounce.

Kuya_Moko #10 Posted Jan 27 2012 - 16:40

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I've always seen alpha damage as how much pain you can dole out as soon as you see someone before retreating.

Who actually cares what it means? It just sounds cool.

conductiv #11 Posted Jan 27 2012 - 18:23

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it is stolen from the MW series. it stuck because its the cool sounding tool to differ between sustained DPM and peek-a-boom strategies. hence "alpha" high damage slow guns became favorable in the game.

in MW it means the damage caused by simultanious weapon fire (all weapon groups, that can each contain several weapons) as mechs can mount various different weapons for different ranges or attack types. while a tank can only carry one effective cannon.

it means the damage you can cause with your first shot, high "alpha" guns are often guns with massive damage per shot and a slow reload.

Okeano #12 Posted Jan 27 2012 - 19:12

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View PostCatholicSkin, on Jan 27 2012 - 16:05, said:

Tiger 1 has 100mm frontal armor and properly pierced with a D10T 100mm soviet gun (175 pen, 230dmg), it will do all of the 230dmg. If the Tiger is angled, it may only do 115 etc, or just bounce.
If a shot penetrates, it will do full damage, unless it's a crit hit (I'm not sure if modules soak up partial damage outside of 0 damage crits). Your armor either stops the shot or doesn't. It won't absorb damage.

sampak #13 Posted Jan 27 2012 - 19:49

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As explained above, "Alpha" is a term used to explain the actual single shot damage potential of the tank. It is to differentiate between DPS or DPM which is damage per minute (assuming sustained fire). Since higher tier tanks have slower reloading guns that do tons of damage, and often play in a slower pace, you don't have time to sit and shoot sustained round after round, and so therefore, you need to hurt your target the most in 1 shot. This is where instead of "DPS" guns like the Sherman's rapid fire 21 RPM  76mm M1A2, you want something like the Short 88 which will do 240 damage (almost double that of the M1A2) and reloads around 8-9 RPM.

In a peek-a-boom fight the tank with the higher damage gun can afford to shoot slower, and can in essence, lessen how often he takes damage due to his own gun being slower firing, BUT with higher damage per shot he should theoretically win. Unless he's shooting at my E-75, then I win automatically via my bounconium.. ;)

This is how an Alpha-strike goes in Mechwarrior 2 or 3....

mashes numlock, slash key, and asterisk keys on Numpad
BOOM PEW PEW!!!!!!!!
"GRRLEEEEP!! Heat level critical." (almost like the female computer voice is just chilling)
"Shutdown Sequence Initiated.." mashes "O" key "KLICKBLIPBLIPCLIP! Shutdown sequence overridden."
PEW PEW PEW PEW PEW

BOOM.

:-/

sr360 #14 Posted Jan 27 2012 - 19:56

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I prefer the shots "high damage per shot" vs "high damage per minute" or "over time". Unfortunately they're abbreviated as "DPS" and "DPM" or "DOT"... which confuses things even more. Alpha is an inaccurate but convenient shorthand.

sr360 #15 Posted Jan 27 2012 - 19:56

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Double post, please disregard

Dlardrageth #16 Posted Jan 27 2012 - 20:29

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View Postsr360, on Jan 27 2012 - 19:56, said:

I prefer the shots "high damage per shot" vs "high damage per minute" or "over time". Unfortunately they're abbreviated as "DPS" and "DPM" or "DOT"... which confuses things even more. Alpha is an inaccurate but convenient shorthand.

Additionally "DPS" is a stat of doubtful usefulness in WoT. With rather long-ish reload times on some guns, DPM might be more important to look at. And that's still not counting in the whole dominant "Peekabo" playstyle.