Weapons play a major role in Hangeki, and using weapons efficiently requires the strategic management of the combo meter. In this brief article, I will cover a few key aspects of the combo meter as well as a few strategies to consider when trying to pull off weapon combos.
1) Not all meter levels are the same.
You probably noticed this while playing but may have not been able to put words to it. The combo meter in Hangeki has 3 levels ( 1, 2, and 3 ). Collecting coins charges the meter. Weapons use up a certain level of meter when fired. The trick here is that each level of combo meter is not the same as the level before it, that is, a level 2 meter is not equal to two level 1 meters.
Here's the rough breakdown of the meter levels:
Lv 1 = 1 meter
Lv 2 = about 3.5 Lv 1 meters
Lv 3 = about 2 Lv 2 meters
So what does this mean? While you can quickly charge a Lv 1 meter using only the standard blaster, charging a Lv 2 won't be quite as easy. Not only that, if you ever stop hitting enemies, your meter will begin to decay, making it even harder to get to that elusive Lv 2 meter. And blastering to a Lv 3 meter? Forget it. That's like trying to charge 7 Lv 1 meters.
This brings up the question: how do I get to Lv 3 meter? Use weapons. It's really that simple. More specifically, use Lv 1 weapons to get your combo rolling. Weapons in Hangeki have a stat called "combo multiplier" that increases the number of coins enemies drop when destroyed by the weapon. This means destroying an enemy with a weapon will give you more coins than destroying an enemy with your blaster.
Essentially, you have to "invest" a weapon in order to get to the higher meter levels. You can still technically reach the higher meter levels with only the blaster, but doing so is very slow and risky. This is why Lv 1 weapons are so critical. They give you an easy, low-cooldown, weapon to "invest" and reach higher meter levels. Of course, there are strategies that let you ignore taking a Lv 1 weapon, but taking a Lv 1 weapon is a good way to ensure consistency.
2) Weapon costs are based on meter level, not meter amount.
This is a far more subtle thing that not all players will notice. Each weapon has a level, and this level determines how many meters it uses to fire. The key thing to know is that weapon costs are constant. This probably doesn't make sense, so let's look at it with some examples.
Let's pretend we're using the Triple Seeker, a Lv 1 weapon.
> Using the Triple Seeker when you have Lv 1 meter uses one Lv 1 meter. No surprise here.
> Using the Triple Seeker when you have Lv 2 meter uses one Lv 2 meter. So after firing you have Lv 1 meter left. Makes sense right? Well...think about how the meter system works. Not all meters are the same right? When you fire your Triple Seeker with Lv 2 meter, you basically use 3.5 meters instead of 1. Sound like a rip off? It is. This is why you want to avoid using Lv 1 weapons when you have higher levels of meter. There is an exception though...
> Using the Triple Seeker when you have full Lv 3 meter uses one Lv 1 meter. Huh? Yep. When you are maxed out on meter, Lv 1 weapons will still use only a Lv 1 meter worth of meter.
These same rules apply to Lv 2 weapons as well.
The basic take-away from all this is to use your weapons when you can. "Saving" weapons for later usually hurts you in the long run. Most weapons don't have that long of cooldowns, especially Lv 1 weapons. Use them when you can. Of course, you want to use them when they are actually going to be effective. Spamming Pulse Laser is probably going to use more meter than you will get back.
Hope you learned a little more about how Hangeki works and have begun to think of some new strategies to take to the battlefield.Good luck out there!