i was wondering why kinetic weapons seem to be so much weaker then the other two types now. i started playing the game in the last ~2 weeks of the beta and if i remember correctly, they used to be more powerful not too long ago. the first time I played the tutorial, the starting frigate you get had (i think) 32 kinetic damage or something. it seems the damage of kinetic weapons was nerfed with one of the latest patches, the ship from the tutorial now only has 8 kinetic damage and can't even kill the space pirate base (which i think is the main reason why you get that ship in the tutorial, so you learn how the combat works).
that's not restricted to this single ship, though. kinetics in general seem much weaker than beam and missile weapons. the first tier of kinetic weapons (rail gun) has 1 damage with cooldown 4 and 80% accuracy, the stinger missile which is also a tier one weapon has 6 damage, 90% accuracy and 8 cooldown, the particle beam has 3 damage, 5 cooldown and 100% accuracy (the laser is sort of "tier 0", so i think it makes more sense to compare the particle beam). on top of that, the kinetic weapons are also the largest module (t1 kinetic is size 24, t1 missile is size 18 and t1 beam is size 14). the only advantage seems to be that they are significantly cheaper, but i don't think that's a big enough advantage to make them a useful alternative.
higher tier versions of the weapn types follow the same trend more or less - kinetics are big, cheap, low cooldown, low range, very low damage - beams are small, expensive, mid cooldown, mid range and decent damage and missiles are mid sized, expensive, slow cooldown. high damage.
that balance seems to work for beams and missiles, but even if kinetics are supposed to be the "cheap and weak option", it doesn't really add up since they are also fairly bulky, so you basically have to make a battleship full of mass drivers to match the firepower of small missile boat.
am i missing something here? mass drivers really don't seem like a viable choice at the moment.