The Carnage is definitely an old school robot, a War Robots veteran from when Rhinos ruled supreme and Magnum Stalkers were not uncommon. It survived the meta change to Lancelots, however, when the infamous Dash bots were unleashed along with the Inquisitor and Spectre... (see here for a blog covering the Descend bots)...this rugged machine's numbers dwindled. In this blog, we will be looking at the Carnage's health, ability, firepower, strategy and how it could remain a potent threat in the future.
Boasting an incredibly high health of.....erm........114,000 at level 12 mk1, the Carnage isn't the most durable robot around. To make up for this deficiency, it has a 68,000 health in-built energy shield that regenerates over time. This allows the Carnage to resist mid-long range rocket /kinetic weapons fire, which can be invaluable at times (e.g rushing towards a much-needed beacon). However, this also makes it extremely vulnerable to plasma. If you thought the Fujin was too vulnerable to plasma, then don't even think about the Carnage, unless you're going to somehow turn it into an invincible walnut.
The Carnage comes with the Rush ability, like the one found on the Lancelot. For a period of 10 seconds, your speed is increased by 66%....which is great, given that the Carnage is one of the slower medium robots. With a substantial cooldown of 20 seconds, it is to be used wisely. It is best used to capture beacons, close in on enemy robots/campers and to retreat if you're heavily outgunned/outnumbered. Another great use of this ability is to ambush unsuspecting enemy robots...with the right weapons, the Carnage can wreak havoc on enemy robots.
This is where the Carnage comes in. With 2 Heavy weapon slots, the Carnage has more firepower than the Kumiho, equal firepower to a Bulwark and enough to rival a Leo. When equipped with close-range weapons such as the Thunder, Avenger, Ember or Exodus, the Carnage is a formidable ambusher, able to rapidly take down foes larger than itself. If used well in conjunction with its Rush Mode, the Carnage can even succesfully defeat more powerful enemy robots such as the Inquisitor.
If knife-fighting isn't your thing, then the Carnage also performs well as a mid-ranger. Using a pair of Zeuses, Dragoons or even Tempests (also consider the Kang Dae when its range, damage and reload are all changed) are all effective setups for the Carnage as well.
The Carnage should be used similarly to the Griffin. Often known as an 'assassin' or 'glass cannon', the Carnage should make full use of cover and use ambush tactics. Charging into battle and brawling with heavyweights such as Raijins and Leos seldom works. For knife-fighter loadouts, use your ability to close the range and/or quickly move from cover and towards your target. Open fire as soon as possible (i.e when you have a clear line of sight) to destroy your opponent(s) before they can fire back or alert teammates. Try to stay out of point-blank range though; this will allow enemy robots to bypass your energy shield.
Most, if not all, plasma armed opponents should be avoided (with the possible exception of a Magnum Stalker). They will most likely fry your robot within seconds, so stay out of their way unless you're defending an important beacon etc. However, if you're either defending a crucial area or in a back-to-the-wall situation with no way out, don't hesistate to charge at them, guns blazing, trying to maximise the damage you inflict on the enemy.
For mid-rangers, select your targets carefully. Pick out the robots who are most dangerous to your teammates (or yourself), and stay behind cover when reloading. Also look out for enemy snipers/mid-rangers armed with energy weapons such as the Trebuchet, given your low health. Even seemingly 'weak' weapons such as the Gekko (or its much more powerful brother, Flux) will wear your robot down, so don't get caught out in the open.
Overall, the Carnage is an often understated robot that performs outstandingly well as a close-range ambusher or mid-ranger. With the release of new weapons such as the Exodus, there is a chance that the Carnage may return to the high-league meta once more.