Smokescreen Category: Abilities
Smokescreen
Unlocked at Crab Level 250
Increases Critical Rate
+3% per Level

  • Increases critical rate of all crabs.
  • Going above 100% crit rate has no additional benefits, so raising this ability level too much is a waste of gold.
  • The gene Foggy Mist adds double damage to any crabs that dodge.
  • The mutation Scarlet Pincers cuts its cooldown in half.
  • The mutation Verdant Wings Carapace increases the duration. If you have the cooldown mutation, you need level 290 Verdant Wings Carapace for "permanent smokescreen" (total cost 828139 DNA + unlock).

Talent: Poison Cloud

  • Deals 300% crab damage per second.
  • Uses AVERAGE CRAB DAMAGE and does not seem to crit. Damage numbers are not displayed for this to verify.
  • See this article for more information on the average stats.

When it's good

If you don't yet have a long running Shadow Swarm. An extra 3x damage isn't much but it's often enough to slaughter lower level crabs and let the game play itself. If you do have a long running Shadow Swarm, you should keep reading.

Commentary

3x damage isn't that much at higher levels, and if you have Shadow Swarm active, you have a much better choice down below.

Talent: Ammonia Cloud

  • Slows the boss timer by 25%.
  • This means the default 30 second boss timer will extend to 42.5 seconds.

When it's good

Before you get the boss timer mutation this could get you a few bosses further than normal.

Commentary

Really, the boss timer mutation, Verdant Wings Walkers makes this a useless choice.

Talent: Dense Cloud

  • Increases critical damage by 50%.
  • This doesn't mean 50% of total critical damage. In Crab War language, 100% critical damage = a 5x multiplier, so 50% means a 2.5x multiplier. If your crab already has a 200x multiplier, this cloud will make it effectively 202.5x.

When it's good

Any time, but especially when you have Shadow Swarm running.

Commentary

It's not a super big jump in damage as described above unless you have Shadow Swarm running. Just rough numbers, but if you have Swarm running, consider that 2.5x boost becomes an overall 25x boost per second to your damage, multiplied by the Swarm's damage ability. Compare that to Poison Cloud which is only 3x the average.

Which Talent Should I Choose?

Most people pick Poison Cloud thinking the reptiles "die faster" - which can be true to a point. Poison Cloud tends to apply its damage the very instant that the reptile is "killable" without waiting for a crab to make impact. At low distances, 3x your avg crab damage is usually more than enough to kill the reptile so they "pop" and die.

However, when you consider how many crabs you have flying up at the reptile - especially with Shadow Swarm running - the lag time between the reptile becoming "killable" and a crab making contact with it is miniscule. You might save yourself a few seconds every 1000m by using Poison Cloud, but is that little bit of time worth losing the extra damage of Dense Cloud at higher distances?

Some Math

  • Say your Shadow Swarm is at level 50.
  • That would give the swarm a damage bonus of 1500%, or 15x.
  • Say your avg crab damage is 1 billion.
  • Swarm crabs would be doing, on average, 15 billion damage each.
  • Dense Cloud adds 2.5x when they crit, or 37.5 billion damage each.
  • Your swarm hits 10 times per second.
  • Dense Cloud Contribution to Swarm Damage: 375 billion damage per second.
  • Poison Cloud: 3 billion damage per second.

Note as your crit multiplier gets larger and larger, this bonus isn't going to make much of a difference either way. +2.5x when your multiplier is 100 is sort of significant (2.5% increase) but when your multiplier is over 1000, it's not. At that point you might as well just pick which colour cloud you like the best.