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Subject: M41A Pulse Rifle and Blastech E-11
TriggaFingaz    6/30/2004 3:55:10 PM
Which of the two primary science fiction firearms do you all prefer- the M41A pulse rifle (used by the Colonial Marines and the Company’s white armoured biotech troops in Aliens and Alien 3 respectively) or the Blastech E-11 (the blaster rifle used by Stormtroopers in Star Wars)? I know they exist in two separate story line arcs but both look stylish. The M41A prop was constructed from a Thompson pistol grip and SPAS-12 shotgun, the E-11 prop was constructed from a Sterling 9mm SMG. The M41A has two types of ammo (10mm caseless HEAP rounds and 30mm grenades) while according to the Essential Guide to Weapons and Technology, the E-11 has a 100 round power pak for shooting what is in essence a particle beam of coherent energy. Although Alien Resurrection is set nearly 200 years after Alien 3, I damn well prefer the by then antique M41A to those pieces seen in A-R. I’ve seen close up shots of the weapons used by the Auriga and Betty’s crew in A-R, did not like the shape of them at all. For sound effects I very much prefer the M41A. Call me an old fashioned dinosaur, but I prefer to see bullet based weapons in a sci-fi movie rather than laser like gear which is too fantastic. Maybe becoz I like semi-realistic science fiction that has SOME similarities to real life than totally fantastic concepts, although I love Star Wars too. Comparing them to other rifle style weapons is welcome, like the blaster rifles with NV scopes that the human survivors use in the future scenes of The Terminator.
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TriggaFingaz    High Guard Force Lance   7/8/2004 6:02:34 PM
Anybody like the Force Lance featured in Andromeda? It can be a compact baton that fires blaster shots or homing bullets. Also, it can telescope into a staff for CQB. Lastly, it is user registered so non authorised thiefs get one hell of a shock for picking it up....
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eon    RE:High Guard Force Lance and Star Trek Phaser   7/13/2004 9:35:54 AM
I like the Force Lance- it's both an effective CQB weapon and (in the hands of someone trained in staff-fighting) a nasty hand-to-hand range striking weapon. My only quibble is its lack of sights; a gauss weapon really needs at least a decent set of iron sights even at point-blank. On the same subject, the Star Trek phasers have always irritated me. They seem to have no sights whatsoever except for the SMG-like "rifles", which have (imho) poorly-designed sights for their purpose. Of course, according to the old FASA Star Trek RPG and the even older Ballantine Tech Manual, the Phaser II's max. effective range is only 75m, and the rifle (original version) is only good for 125m. So maybe they never figured on engaging out past 25-50m to begin with. (And did you ever notice- the best shot in the bunch was Mr. Spock?) :-).
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doggtag     Star Trek weapons   7/13/2004 6:55:34 PM
< "...the best shot in the bunch was Mr. Spock." > "It's that damn Vulcan discipline!", as Bones would say. A good point about most Trek weapons: few of them lack any noticeable sighting systems, just point and shoot (and let the special effects guys worry about the beam hitting the target! heh heh) In ST:Next Gen, the normal phasers (not the mini versions) are "contoured" to fit a person's palm/grip, and effectively act as an extension of their arm, so instinct is the aiming device here: just point your arm where you want to shoot. The later model phaser rifles were very cool looking assault weapons and did feature a scanner/targeting device on the top. But I think the coolest Trek gun was from Deep Space Nine (even though most of theirs looked like dressed up Nerf or water guns), had to be the sniping weapon the Vulcan guy used in one of the later episodes (Ezri Dax, not Jadzia Dax), which used a trans-spectral scanner coupled to a headset, and fired a projectile bullet coupled to a mini-transporter which effectively "beamed" the exiting bullet into any room on DS9 to hit anyone that could be seen through the walls with the scanner. Now THAT would be the best covert weapon ever..
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eon    RE: Star Trek weapons-eon to doggtag   7/15/2004 9:33:22 AM
Good point, I'd forgotten that one, and I can't figure out why because when I saw it I thought it was so d****d cool compared to the rest of their hardware. But I'm afraid I can't agree with you on the NG hand phasers, aka the "dustbuster" design. The original version had a far too shallow grip-to-"bore" angle, that almost encouraged the shooter to "heel" the shot, sending it high (if you freeze-frame early episodes of NG and DS9 on your VCR or DVD, you can often see that when one of the actors "fires" one, the opticalled-in beam comes out of the "emitter" at a serious angle because the bloody "gun" is actually pointed at the ceiling). Later models, notably on DS9 and "Voyager", introduced a gretaer grip angle; the last ones on both had about the same angle as a 9mm Luger automatic. To be fair all round, I have to admit that, from my own experience with my own collection, the original series Phaser II had about the best grip angle for instinctive shooting, with the various movie models (the IIA seen in the first two and the IIA, III,and IV seen in STIV, V, and VI) running a close second. This is probably just as well, as Starfleet seems to teach the Jerry Usher point-shooting technique to the exclusion of all else. (As a former ST con "redshirt", I used to frequently get zinged when in skits I would make the traditional all-out grab for the Phaser II, and then go to Weaver.) :-).
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doggtag    RE: Star Trek weapons-doggtag back to eon   7/15/2004 2:02:54 PM
Thanks for the info. From the tech books I have, the phaser was "suppose" to function as I mentioned, as an extension of the arm. But naturally: show me ten GOOD Hollywood actors who have any decent natural shooting abilities. By Starfleet training, that was the concept, but by Hollywood, the effects guys took care of it. After watching ST: First Contact, and seeing Picard tommygun a Borg, it just simply amazed me: "hey, why don't we make PROJECTILE weapons to use against the Borg?" How long before they "adapt" by fabricating Borg Kevlar? Besides, sheer kinetic energy alone (why not a point blank gut shot with a 12?) would knock them on their collective @sses (pun intended). Could've been funnier in First Contact if Picard would have entered a Wild West scenario instead and ripped the Borg down with a hand crank gatling. It never ceases to amaze me that, with all the advanced tech with beam weapons and shields, they simply forget that brute force (kinetic energy) can effectively punch through. Figure, if a starfighter can "fly through" a ship's shields, then just get in close enough and strafe them in critical spots with heavy kinetic penetrators (case in point: a Star Trek equivalent of a GAU-8 firing some kind of solid projectiles which react explosively with different Trek metals/alloys could seriously f' up a warp nacelle. The same could be said about Rebel ships doing attacks on Star Destroyer: straf the bridge with a StarWars Vulcan cannon, and no more bridge crew. Or similarly, Republic Gunships armed with miniguns firing AP, and forward mounted 30mm sized autocannons (again, just like the Hind), would eat up ray-shielded surface armor with ease. Not to mention, punching a few hundred extra fist sized holes in a Confederacy droid dropship might create enough damage in certain areas to prevent it from reaching space. Hey, it could happen!.
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Ehran    RE: Star Trek weapons-doggtag back to eon   7/15/2004 2:30:35 PM
sheer kinetic energy alone (why not a point blank gut shot with a 12?) would knock them on their collective @sses (pun intended). not to nitpick but if there was that much KE in the shotgun hit wouldn't it knock down the shooter when it was fired? i've seen a guy eat a 308 round from 2' perched on one leg. wobbled but didn't fall down.
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TriggaFingaz    About bullets in Star Wars space fights....   7/15/2004 6:10:03 PM
I doubt bullets would do much harm to a star ship. Their particle shielding can resist asteroids! Also, if it takes several proton torps to bring down shields, then it'd take thousands of bullets to even bring 'em down by 10%. Just a thought.....
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TriggaFingaz    RE:High Guard Force Lance vs Goa'uld staff   7/15/2004 6:14:11 PM
Of course the Force Lance is cooler! You can shorten it to hang on your belt and it fires both smart bullets and energy. The Goauld staff weapon (Stargate SG-1) is fixed length and only fires plasma bolts. Also, not very accurate. In one episode, O'Neill demonstrates the difference between the staff weapon and the FN P90 to a group of renegade Ja'faa: O'Neill (on the staff weapon): 'This is a weapon of terror!" Teal'C takes several tries to hit a suspended log target. O'Neill (on the P90): 'Now this is a weapon of WAR!" Carter fires a burst and perforates the log, then switches to single shot to cut its rope.
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eon    RE: KE weapons- eon to Ehran   7/20/2004 9:46:39 AM
You just voiced one of the long-standing myths about projectile weapons. Remember, Newton's 3rd Law is that "For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction". That is, equal in quantity, not in effect. The 12-gauge slug weighs about one ounce, and is moving about 1,600 fps, yielding (if memory serves) about 1450 fpe. The shotgun that launched it weighs (on average) 7 to 8 pounds, or about 130-140 times the weight of the slug. When you divide it out, the shotgun moves backwards at about 13 fps, and hits your shoulder with about 16 ft-lbs of "free recoil energy" (fre). Now, if you want real uncontrollable recoil, consider a particle- beam weapon, firing relatively massive particles like protons at just under the speed of light. The one thing I did like about the weapons in Star Wars was that the heavy stuff was shown to be recoiling with each shot, and did have recoil systems. the only trouble is, they got it backwards in their tech books, stating that the small arms were plasma (particle-bolt) guns (that would definitely have recoil), but that the heavy weapons (shown recoiling) were all lasers- the one sort of energy weapon that has no appreciable recoil, AFAIK. Go figure.....
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eon    RE: KE weapons-eon back to doggtag   7/20/2004 10:00:04 AM
It's always surprused me that SF writers (as opposed to Hollywood) haven't made more use of KE weapons like electromagnetic (gauss) weapons, considering that they are easier to build (tech-level wise) than pure-energy weapons, just as lethal, probably more rugged ( and thus more "boot-proof", as per Ian Hogg), and are not subject to the inverse-square law in space. Harry Harrison was (AFAIK) about the only SF writer of the late "Golden Age" to use them, and today I can't think of any offhand who do. Daid Weber, in his "Honor Harrington" stories, came up with the "pulser", a gravity-acceleration small-arm, but he didn't use them as main battery or fighter weapons. About the only SF writer who ever made extensive use of what we'd call "conventional" KE weapons was H. Beam Piper, who had starships that mounted autocannon as CIWS, much like modern naval vessels do. If you want to image something really nasty in this department, think of a GAU-8 firing, not depleted-uranium (staballoy) rounds, but the kind of "micronukes" postulated by Robert Heinlein in "Starship Troopers" or Steve Jackson in the old "OGRE" and "GEV" pocket games. Think 3cm californium rounds with microlaser detonation. The result would just about give a spacegoing "Warthog" at least as good a chance of ripping the h**l out of a Star-Destroyer's upperworks as the Warthog jockey in Clancy's "Hunt For Red October" figured he had of tearing up the foc'sle of the Kirov..
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