Entry 2 – Firearms
[user command: load file – ‘ori_munitions_firearms’]
Designation: ‘Ori Munitions – Firearm Technology’
Firearm technology is a small sector within general military strategy on Covenant, primarily due to the overall scarcity of ammunition and the volatility of improperly maintained equipment. Bastion is known to have invested the most development into the area, maintaining a division of their standing army labelled ‘Sharpshooters’ and wielding Long Rifles. The next most common usage is by those outside city walls, who can utilise anything they might find whilst travelling and often build up some impressive collections.
There are two main categories of Firearm widely known and used: Hand Cannons and Rifles. These are then broken down into sub-categories where appropriate.
Hand Cannons use a cylinder of super-compressed Munitions as their ammunition, striking it with a firing pin to create a burst of kinetic energy shot from the barrel at lethal velocity. When not built and/or used correctly, this can be an incredibly dangerous and volatile weapon, backfiring or otherwise venting that energy through gaps in the body of the Firearm. However, the force of correctly directed blasts is devastating, often killing or seriously wounding targets with one accurate shot.
The cylinders can vary wildly in shot capacity, depending on the quality of Munitions inside or simply the physical size of the cylinder compared to the firing pin and Firearm. On average, however, one could expect six shots before needing to load a replacement cylinder. Each can be refilled if the correct machinery is available but using powdered Munitions without compression does not function properly and will lead to a chain reaction that ends in high-velocity combustion within the cylinder itself.
- Pistols: magazine-fed, utilising small calibres of individual bullet-cylinders, less powerful but more reliable.
- Repeaters: automatic, magazine-fed, incredibly volatile and still in development. [user comment: These are particularly interesting, as they have been invented by Null rather than scavenged from Ori technology. Obviously, that begs the question of whether the Ori knew of the possibility and simply chose not to risk it, since every prototype Repeater today is often more dangerous to the user than their targets. Regardless, creating such technology marks a distinction between the Ori and Null; no one on this planet fully understands Munitions, nor is able to fabricate their own, yet the Null strive to find new uses for it beyond what the Ori created.]
Rifles are the larger sibling to the Hand Cannon, utilising individual bullet-cylinders of super-compressed Munitions that are loaded into a firing chamber either from beneath or above. A similar firing mechanism to Hand Cannons is also housed within, which connects to a longer barrel than Hand Cannons would typically use; with two hands the wielder can brace against the stronger recoil, firing a more precise burst of kinetic energy. The empty cylinders then need to be removed from the rifle after each shot, which is done in a variety of different ways but most often through opening the chamber up and letting a spring of some kind eject the cylinder. Occasionally they can be scavenged and refilled but depending on the size and materials used in their construction, the explosion of energy within the barrel can irreparably damage them.
These Firearms are typically harder to just pick up and use, in no small part due to the more complicated operating procedure, but they are lethal at far longer ranges than Hand Cannons and can be modified more easily for niche use cases.
- Long Rifles: elongated barrels, breach-loaded, used for extreme distances and large calibres.
- As mentioned earlier, this variant is used by the Bastion Sharpshooter division, which patrol the walls of the city and occupy the outposts/watch towers scattered throughout their territories.
- Short Rifles: sawn-off/shortened barrels, often magazine-fed, better in tight spaces but improvised and thus volatile.