Laser turrets do not fire a physical projectile, but rather emit high-intensity electromagnetic radiation (in other words a very strong beam of light). They are advanced weapons that require massive amounts of energy to fire. They are exclusively used by the Amarr, as Amarrian ships are designed with capacitors and reactors powerful enough to fit and fuel these weapons. Because they are energy weapons they do not do kinetic or explosive damage, but solely a combination of electromagnetic (EM) and thermal.
Like all turrets, Lasers are available in two (sometimes regarded as three) variants:
The Tachyon Beam laser, an exceptionally powerful variant of Beam laser, has an even higher DPS than a Mega Beam Laser. It has a volley damage slightly lower than a 1400mm Howitzer and a similar range. It also tracks slower than the Mega Beam Laser, but is still faster than a 425mm Railgun or a 1400mm Howitzer. However, it consumes capacitor charge in extreme quantities, and is extremely difficult to fit (a Tachyon Beam Laser II requires a whopping 4125MW of powergrid, while a 1400mm Howitzer requires about 3500MW). Due to it's power requirements and damage potential, it is often considered to be a third variant of Laser turret by pilots.
Advantages and Disadvantages
As lasers do not fire a physical projectile, they require no ammunition to operate. Rather, range and damage depends on the crystal (essentially a large lens) loaded into the weapon, which is not consumed when the laser is fired. However, Faction and Tech II crystals deteriorate with use - Faction crystals come with 4,000 shots when unused, and Tech II crystals take damage randomly but on average provide 1,000 shots each. As Tech I crystals last indefinitely and have a low volume, Lasers are popular with missioners and pilots based 0.0. Finally, laser crystals can be swapped extremely quickly, allowing a pilot to change the range and damage output of his/her guns on the fly.
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