The BlackHammer CyberPunk Project

Obscene ROF Weapons
By Rich


This follows on from an article about a new weapon system from Australia. The weapon has a number of bullets loaded in series within the barrel. An electric charge causes the first round to fire and the round behind expands to temporarily block the barrel. This allows each round to fire off with a fraction of a second apart and without causing a large explosion within the gun.

An excerpt from the web is as follows:

An electronic gun was recently unveiled in Australia, invented by a man named Mike O'Dwyer. Called the Metal Storm, the weapon has no moving mechanical parts. A single barrel fires rounds at a rate equivalent to one million per minute, in contrast to the fastest conventional firearm, the Gattling gun, which fires at 6,000 rounds per minute. The bullets leave the barrel so quickly, they are only microseconds apart; the distance between bullets flying through the air is 10 centimetres, versus current guns where the gap is 30 meters. The Metal Storm works through a combination of specially designed bullets, and an electronic firing mechanism. Other than the projectiles, nothing moves. One feature of such a gun is that the fundamental electronics offer an opportunity to build in safeguards. If the electronic safeguard is disabled, the entire gun would be disabled. Physicists says that the basic design of the gun is very solid. O'Dwyer worked on his own for years to develop the technology (one of his other inventions is the air-cooled sneaker, which pump air as you jog). His approach is highly innovative, and succeeds in the gun market where other technological attempts by groups such as Sandia National Laboratory missed the mark. (Read more about this in the April 1999 Scientific American.)

Multibarrel Weapons

This type of technology could lead to a number of multibarreled weapons within 2020. You could have quad or tribarrelled rifles available that can fire a very large number of bullets very quickly. This could work like this:

Blacklight Industries Quadgun

Name Type WA Conc Avail Damage Ammo ROF Rel Range Cost
Blacklight Quadgun Electric Multibarrel -2 N P 3D6+1 4 x 10 shots
(10 per barrel)
Special R 150m $2000

The ROF would depend on the number of barrels being fired. If quad and tri-barrel guns are available it should be possible to fire a combination of the barrels per round. Should the user wish to fire more barrels, he incurs a -2 penalty per barrel over the first he fires (so three barrels gives a -4 penalty). The ref may rule that characters with a high strength can reduce this penalty (say, ignore -1 per two BOD or STR points over eight). Due to the way the weapon fires, two bullets hit per success point over the task rating.

Reloading the weapon means breaking open the barrel and inserting a tube of bullets into the barrel one at a time. This will take about three to five seconds for a skilled operator. Currently, only jelly rounds, general purpose and armour-piercing rounds are available. Jelly rounds expand in to large balls of flexible plastic that slap against a target. Their impact causes stun damage (with on 10% being real) and they are often used in riot control.

Mirage MB4 "SnapDragon" Pistol

Name Type WA Conc Avail Damage Ammo ROF Rel Range Cost
Snapdragon Electric Multibarrel 0 J P 2D6+1 4 x 6 shots
(6 per barrel)
Special R 50m $900

The snapdragon is a pepperbox pistol, i.e.: a sidearm with four barrel lined stacked in a 2x2 formation. As with the quadgun, it is possible to fire a single or multiple barrels of the weapon. Firing a single barrel of the weapon launches five shots with two shots hitting per point of success over the hit rating. Should the user wish to fire more barrels, he incurs a -2 penalty per barrel over the first he fires (so three barrels gives a -4 penalty).

As with the Quadgun, the Snapdragon must be broken open and reloaded manually. The Snapdragon's tube rounds are available with jelly rounds, general purpose or armour piercing.

Disposable Mutlishot Baton

These are available for large pistols and rifles. The tube is carefully inserted down the barrel and by twisted the end piece expands the baton to fit snugly. The baton can only be used with an empty breach as the firing pin causes an electrical charge to start the baton's chain reaction.

The rifle model ($60) contains ten 9mm slugs and the pistol version ($40) contains four 9mm shots. Either are available with general purpose, armour piercing or with jelly rounds. The baton fires all of the rounds in one instance and the rest of the baton disintegrates harmlessly as the baton fires. As with other electroguns, two shots hit per success points over the hit rating.

[Rumour persists of a blackmarket flechette version that contains a large number of barbed sabots. Normally, two shots hit per success point over the task rating, but with flechettes - one D6 of flechettes hit per two success points and each flechette does D6+1 damage].

As usual... comments, suggestions and witty remarks can be sent here.