Uses of the Boom Barrel Dispenser?
One of the traps I find difficult to use is the boom barrel dispenser. I've seen a few videos that use it, and maybe I'm missing something, but it seems that even in those videos they often don't do much, if you're watching carefully. For example, when I was watching Nananea and Fryedegg do Not Rocket Science, it's apparent that most of the boom barrels in their killbox blew up well before any enemies reached them. They're both better players than I will ever be, but I think they could have done better even with the limited trap selection using the wall space and money for something else.
Here are what seem to be the problems, though I may be mistaken:
* The straight damage output of the dispenser over time is pretty poor. There is a long time between barrels.
* Barrels tend to explode if they fall from any height. Dispensers looked interesting at first to me because they could stack above other wall traps, but I had trouble making that work. It may be that there are rules to this I don't understand.
* Barrels tend to detonate prematurely in most killboxes. Lots of things set them off early. Barrels that land on floor scorchers, for example, tend to get flipped away and then explode before enemies reach them.
* It's pretty damned rare that it's useful to deal with them by hand. Usually you're pretty pressed for time. Throwing a big batch with the wind belt might work.
On the other hand, a dispenser could in theory give you a big alpha strike, in cases where doing a lot of damage all at once is more important than steady damage output. A late dispenser can easily accumulate 4+ barrels, which can be handy if you have a couple of Earth Lords late in the wave.
Has anyone done any real Science on the subject?