Armored Core 6 players meme their way through the stages of grief as new patch buffs nearly every weapon but nerfs beloved shotgun and grenade cannon

Armored Core 6 key art
(Image credit: FromSoftware)

They had it coming.

From the moment players started blasting their way through Armored Core 6 dual-wielding the Zimmerman shotguns with two Songbirds grenade cannons on their shoulders, it seemed like only a matter of time until FromSoftware took a long, hard look at each weapon and turned down the heat on them both. Heck, after the last patch in early September, it became a community meme that the Zimmerman escaped unscathed. That dominant run ended today with patch 1.03.1, which buffs dozens of weapons and other mecha parts while laser targeting a few nerfs at AC6's most powerful guns.

FromSoftware clearly decided a few weapon types were underperforming and gave them across-the-board improvements. Four bazookas, for example, now have increased projectile speed and faster reloads. Four handguns have increased rounds, making them more viable picks for longer missions.

Many other weapons have gotten similar treatment, either seeing increased ammo counts, decreased reload times, or faster charge attacks. Only a few specific weapons have seen nerfs, including the fan-favorite Zimmerman shotgun and the Songbirds grenade cannon. Here's the text straight from the patch notes: 

  • SHOTGUN “SG-027 ZIMMERMAN” decreased Attack Power/Impact/Accumulative Impact/Direct Hit Adjustment
  • GRENADE CANNON ”SONGBIRDS”: decreased Attack Power/Impact/Accumulative Impact. Rounds now explode upon reaching their Effective Range, even if they don’t make contact

Armored Core 6 players quickly loaded up the new patch to determine exactly what's changed, and redditor UmbraBliss did us all a solid by sticking the new stats next to pictures of each weapon to make the changes easier to digest.

The Zimmerman shotgun has seen an 11% nerf to damage and a bigger 26% nerf to impact (which fills an enemy's stagger gauge). 

The Songbirds grenade cannon has taken a similar hit, with a roughly 13% damage cut and 12% nerf to impact. Both weapons also saw nerfs to their accumulative impact, which is how long their stagger damage "sticks" on an enemy while they aren't accruing more damage.

Another go-to back weapon also got a major nerf: the Stun Needle Launcher. It took an almost 30% cut to damage.

Given the community's meme-heavy reaction to the last patch, which spared the Zimmerman from this inevitable nerfing, you can probably guess how it's gone over this time.

In memory from r/armoredcore
Lets fucking go gamers. from r/armoredcore
Sad shotgun noises from r/armoredcore

There are a ton more major buffs in this patch, though. Grenade launcher rounds will now explode at the limit of their range even if they don't make impact with anything, potentially making them more viable aerial weapons. A couple of the charging rifles charge significantly faster, and a bunch of missiles now have better guidance towards their targets.

More significant for mech builds are the nearly universal buffs to head parts, arm parts, core parts, and even legs and boosters. The quick takeaway is that recoil is reduced across the board, and player mechs will be harder to stagger and recover more quickly. They'll also be able to jump higher and fly higher still with better upward thrust on boosters.

A few specific changes also aim to more significantly differentiate between types of AC builds, like making reverse-joint mechs better at kicking than the rest:

  • Adjusted Attitude Recovery rate according to Total Weight. ACS Strain now dissipates much faster on lighter ACs, and slightly slower on heavier ACs
  • Decreased Boost Kick attack range for Tetrapod legs
  • Decreased Impact/Accumulative Impact dealt by Boost Kick from all leg types except Reverse Joint

You can check out the full patch notes on Steam, and the Armored Core subreddit for more players celebrating the bulk of the changes while tearfully eulogizing their fallen shotguns.

Wes Fenlon
Senior Editor

Wes has been covering games and hardware for more than 10 years, first at tech sites like The Wirecutter and Tested before joining the PC Gamer team in 2014. Wes plays a little bit of everything, but he'll always jump at the chance to cover emulation and Japanese games.

When he's not obsessively optimizing and re-optimizing a tangle of conveyor belts in Satisfactory (it's really becoming a problem), he's probably playing a 20-year-old Final Fantasy or some opaque ASCII roguelike. With a focus on writing and editing features, he seeks out personal stories and in-depth histories from the corners of PC gaming and its niche communities. 50% pizza by volume (deep dish, to be specific).