The Level 1 common Defender rifle does just as much damage (actually, more damage) as the Level 45 masterwork Ralner’s Blaze rifle.
A user on Reddit called YeetLordSupreme posted a thread that basically said the Defender is more powerful than pretty much all other counterparts that are higher tier. Even though the damage numbers shown are very different from the actual damage being output.
The beginner Defender rifle does a mere 286 points of damage with a Ralner’s Blaze rifle dishing out 11184 damage, yet both guns take less than 6 bullets to kill a scar trooper. The masterwork takes 6 shots, but the Defender takes a mere 4 shots. That’s right. The Defender dishes out more damage and kills scar troopers faster than the Level 45 counterpart, even if the number say different.
“I have tested this with various weapons and enemies, and while the numbers vary, the results are always the same: the level 1 defender rifle is by far the most effective weapon in my inventory.”
Another user beatpeet42 repeated the test, and compared a Ralner’s Blaze with 225% damage and the bog standard L1 rifle. This was the result of the test to replicate the theory:
While BioWare will likely nerf the Defender’s damage, they have a lot of other problems to worry about- like Anthem causing PS4s to crash. BioWare technical designer Brenon Holmes commented on this damage discrepancy:
“We’ll need to investigate this, scaling systems are supposed to allow low-level players to play with high-level players to be effective against high-level enemies,” he said.
“This is not intended, something ain’t right there…”
Anthem is now BioWare’s lowest-rated game ever made, yet some people still dig the game. You can pick it up for yourself on Amazon for PC, Xbox One, or PS4. I’d suggest avoiding the PS4 if possible because who wants to brick their console?