Shotguns Are Just Better
. It's a simple fact of life... or, should we say, a simple fact of death!
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Winchester M 1887
A lever action shotgun, designed by John M. Browning for Winchester. Most sportsmen prefer pump-action shotguns for better action speeds (and in fact Browning had intended to design a pump-action gun, but Winchester protested since their brand was most associated with lever action rifles), but that doesn't stop most Hollywood heroes from spinning around sawed-off versions trying to pull a John Wayne
- Cool Action: Spin-cocking requires the stock and barrel to be sawed off, after which the gun can be cocked for another shot by spinning it around the fingers in the lower part of the lever. There is a strong potential for accidentally discharging the weapon or breaking your fingers and/or jaw, which is why this isn't so popular in real life as it is in movies.
- A genuine 10-gauge 1887 was infamously used in Terminator 2: Judgment Day with Arnold himself spinning it in his hand like a toy. In fact, three 1887s were used in the movie, one lightened and with an enlarged lever for flip-cocking; Schwarzenegger is said to have picked up the standard firing one for a flip-cocking scene and almost broke his fingers trying to spin it.
- This is replicated on the Winchester 1887 in the Korean online FPS Alliance of Valiant Arms.
- The Scout's primary weapon in Team Fortress 2, albeit a sawed-off, double-barreled, drum-fed version.
- The Model 1887 turns up in Modern Warfare 2, though a large number of players wish it hadn't. Dual-wielding it causes the user to spin-cock it like in Terminator 2; it returns in Modern Warfare 3 with modern sights, synthetic furniture, no attachments, and another T2 reference engraved into the hammer.
- It shows up in The Darkness II towards the end of the single player and multiplayer co-op mode.
- Seen in Fallout: New Vegas in as the "lever-action shotgun", with a shorter (but apparently not sawn-off) stock and using 20 gauge, unlike in real life where it's only 12 or 10. Often used because it's the only shotgun that benefits from the Cowboy perk's damage boost.
- A slightly modified version with a much wider barrel is seen in BioShock Infinite, known as the "China Broom". An even more radically redesigned version called the "Heater" is used by the Vox Populi, which removes the lever and replaces the barrel so as to convert it into a single-shot blunderbuss firing incendiary shells.
- The "Gravedigger" shotgun in Saints Row The Third is based on the 1887. It can eventually be upgraded to two and then three barrels, somehow.
Izhmash Saiga-12/ 20
A Russian 12- or 20-gauge gas-operated semi-auto, the Saiga-12 and Saiga-20 are based on the AK layout. Using a 5 or 8-round detachable box magazine (or aftermarket 12, 20 or even 30-round drums, but those are quite pricey), it is regarded as reliable and effective while being a lot cheaper than many competing semi-auto shotguns (and certainly cheaper than any other detachable-magazine shotguns), and is widely used by Russian security services; it's also proven popular with hunters (in Russia, legally owning a shotgun is much
easier than legally owning a rifle). Older versions have some unfortunate design holdovers from their AK origins that make the weapon rather difficult to actually load; newer versions address this. Those imported to the US come with non-pistol-grip stocks to meet import requirements, but are often converted back to AK-like stocks once they arrive.
- "Vera" is probably the most well-known example in media; Jayne's "Callahan Fullbore Auto-Lock" in Firefly was a modified Saiga-12 originally built for the movie Showtime.
- One with a large 20-round drum magazine and no stock appears in the movie Gamer.
- Available to buy in Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots; it's the best shotgun in the game, easily overshadowing the others.
- The 12K version is used by the MEC Engineer class in Battlefield 2. Battlefield: Bad Company instead feature the 20K.
- The 12K also appears in ARMA II.
- Available in 7.62 High Calibre, with both 5 and 8 round box magazines available. Most prominently used by the rebels, often with double-taped magazines.
- Gets a lot of screen time on Sons Of Guns, one episode even had the guys stick three of them together to make a Gatling shotgun.
- Appears as an A.K.A.-47 in PAYDAY 2, where after a patch got nerfed down to basically a short range assault rifle.
Daewoo USAS- 12
A fully automatic 12-gauge shotgun designed by the Gilbert Equipment Company and manufactured in South Korea by Daewoo, the USAS-12 resembles a giant AR15-type rifle, weighing over twice as much as an M4. While civilian versions are semi-auto only, military and police versions of this piece of heavy machinery can fire at up to 450 rpm; more impressively, they can do this with standard shotgun shells, while most similar designs require brass casings to reduce the risk of melted plastic fouling the action. While it usually takes a standard 10-round box magazine, it's typically depicted with its 20-round drum magazine. Tends to show up instead of a Jackhammer if the production isn't into Rare Guns
- Added to the Rainbow Six series arsenal in Raven Shield, reappearing in Lockdown with drum magazines, and was also cut from the Vegas subseries.
- Also present in Soldier of Fortune 2 where the results were gruesome.
- Used early on in Stargate SG-1. Especially when Replicator swarms show up.
- Modern Warfare 3
- Battlefield 3, commonly found in the Kaffarov level, as well as an available multiplayer all-class unlock; for balance reasons, the magazine capacity is reduced to 7, though the extended mag attachment is available. Users are still often frowned and looked down upon - before it was nerfed, the USAS-12 with frag rounds was an absolute terror. Also available in Battlefield 4 as a pickup weapon (again with frag rounds).
- Top-tier shotgun in Far Cry 2, seen with a 20-round drum magazine even though it only has 12 shots.
- In the Gunsmith Cats manga, one of Goldie's henchmen uses a USAS-12 to wreck the engine of Rally's beloved Cobra during a high-speed chase. This earns Rally's wrath.
- Appears towards the end of Syphon Filter 2, of special note is the final boss fight where you have to use one to knock Jason Chance, who's head to toe in advanced body armour, into the spinning tail rotor of a parked helicopter.
- One with a standard box magazine was used extensively by Steven Seagal throughout the showdown in On Deadly Ground, where it shreds both people and the side of a helicopter with impunity.
- Riley has one in his brief return to Buffy the Vampire Slayer as a member of a military demon-hunting unit.
- A very rare and expensive shotgun in 7.62 High Caliber, though still not as rare as the Jackhammer.
Also known as the Sentinel Arms Co Striker-12, Protecta, Protecta Bulldog, and Cobray/SWD Street Sweeper [and not the DAO-12, ever]. A South African semi-auto 12-gauge shotgun with a revolver magazine, designed for riot control and combat. The Striker variant features a spring-operated "clockwork" drum magazine, while the Protecta variants use a different mechanism and lack the drum's winding key. This gun was banned by the Clinton Administration
, which had it reclassified as a Destructive Devicenote
, meaning new imports are impossible and the existing examples had to go through an expensive registration process. The gun already had been lengthened to the 18 inches necessary to not be classified as a Short Barreled Shotgun, as well as being internally very different from other versions. It even has a smaller magazine capacity than other legal semiautomatic shotguns and needs to be reloaded one shell at a time and manually wound before it will work. The "Street Sweeper" name probably didn't help
, though. The Striker is not very popular, although it is used by South Africa and Israel.
- Battlestar Galactica. Tom Zarek's men are seen carrying these on Kobol (though it's portrayed as some kind of grenade launcher), and later the marines during the rescue on Caprica.
- Used by Leon in Resident Evil 4; though called the Striker, it was actually a Protecta. It was also possible to modify it to have a one hundred shell capacity. An actual Striker is available in Resident Evil 5.
- Available in Modern Warfare 2 as the Striker, with a variety of sights; for some reason, it's the standard OPFOR shotgun.
- The "Bulldog" short-barreled variant is available in Max Payne 2, replacing the previous game's Jackhammer. The game features a fairly common error in depicting guns with fixed cylinder magazines, in that Max is shown reloading by detaching and replacing the entire drum.
- A Street Sweeper with a sawed-off barrel is available in the first DLC pack for Grand Theft Auto IV. It's not the short-barrel version, since the front sight is in the wrong place.
- Engineer weapon in Battlefield 2, the origin of the term DAO-12. This isn't the weapon's name, and just refers to the weapon's trigger type and gauge ("double action only, twelve gauge").
- Also Battlefield 3, appearing with the same name. This time, it has the stock properly unfolded, though the magazine capacity is reduced for balance reason, though the extended mag attachment make it have the proper 12 magazine size.
- The Protecta shows up in STALKER: Call Of Pripyat called the "Eliminator," and can be fitted with a SUSAT sight.
- As with the Glock and MAC, the name "Street Sweeper" found its way into plenty of nineties gangsta rap lyrics.
- The Striker appears in Desperado as the "biggest Hand Cannon" that Buscemi has ever fucking seen during the first major shootout of the movie.
- Added in the Blue Sun mod for 7.62 High Caliber and is correctly depicted as being reloaded one round at a time, which makes its firepower much less appealing.
The Masterkey is a 12-gauge pump-action under-barrel accessory shotgun designed to allow a solder to breach doors without having to carry a full-sized shotgun. A shortened version of the Remington M870, it has a shortened barrel and no stock or grip, instead using the rifle's magazine as a grip. While it failed to get the military contract KAC had hoped for, it inspired the M26 MASS which did get selected; the MASS is a bolt-action device fed by a detachable box magazine, rather than the tube magazine of the Masterkey.
Remington 870 "Wingmaster
pump-action shotgun. Developed in '51, the 870 is the most popular pump-action shotgun in civilian and police use; from ordinary sportsmen to the GSG-9. As of '09 Remington has produced and sold a whopping 10 million units and counting. Most pump-action shotguns in fiction are based off the 870 or sawed off
in a tac shotgun style because...well, it looks cool.
Chinese clones, such as the Norinco Hawk and the H&R Pardner Pump are also very common. Due to the ubiquity of the 870, similar slide-action shotguns such as the Mossberg 500 and Ithaca 37 are often misidentified as Remingtons. (The latter can be distinguished from the Wingmaster by its lack of an ejection port on its side; spent shells simply drop out the bottom of the Ithaca's loading port instead.)
- Cool Action: there are two: first there's the overdramatic one-hand slam-pump a la Sarah Connor from Terminator 2; the second is an exaggerated lift-and-pump a la Jack from Bioshock. You'd probably sprain your wrist in the first (and it's not good for the gun either) while the second looks cool but isn't a very good way to operate it.
- A sawed-off variant is the Boring, but Practical sidearm of the Soldier, Pyro, and Heavy as well as the primary weapon for the Engineer in Team Fortress 2. It's referred to as the "TF Industries Shotgun", implying that Remington was one of thousands of companies bought out by TF Industries. The Engineer can also get a full-sized variant dubbed the "Frontier Justice", which has a reduced capacity and, like every other weapon added to the game after release, the inability to deal random critical hits.
- The first shotgun available in Max Payne, albeit a police model. Packs a wallop, but it's slow to offset.
- In Puella Magi Madoka Magica, Homura Akemi steals this, along with a Desert Eagle and a sword, from a Yakuza locker room.
- Available in both the "Sport" version and the "Police" version in 7.62 High Calibre, where the police version includes a folding stock and higher internal capacity.
- The Hunting Shotgun in Fallout: New Vegas is the Express version, complete with Sarah Connor style pumping done after reloading.
- Battlefield 3, the first shotgun (and by extent, all-class weapon) to be unlocked in multiplayer, and is the most powerful shotgun in the game with the downside of being pump action.
- Battlefield 4 features both the same 870 MCS as in 3, as well as the Norinco Hawk 97-2 (a magazine-fed clone with a folding stock) as the "Hawk 12G".
- "Deer Hunter," from popular gun forum "The High Road," has created a rather infamous variant known as the Remington 1740; a double-barreled, pump action shotgun made from pinning a lefty 870 and a righty 870 together, removing the stock from one and the grip from another, and linking the pumps. Has to be seen to be believed!◊
- Available very early in 7.62 High Caliber by searching a police car in the starting town. Available in a 4-round hunting version, the 7-round Magnum version, and a Magnum Police with a folding stock.
- JAG: In the 4th season episode ”Going after Francesca”, Chegwidden and Rabb check out shotguns and handguns from the armory of a Navy ship, taking the law into their own hands to save Chegwidden’s kidnapped daughter because the Italian authorities are too slow and buried in red tape.
- King of Thorn: Marco Owen and Ron Portman find Remington 870s in the security room to fend off the monsters. Owen, Portman, Katherine Turner and Kasumi Ishiki use them throughout the film.
- In the opening scene of The Dark Knight, the bank manager pulls a sawed-off 870 on the clown-masked robbers. The Joker ends up stealing this gun, and uses it multiple times throughout the film.
- A lunatic attacks the Alvarado division with a Wingmaster Field Gun in the Southland Season 2 opener "Wednesday."
- Serious Sam 3: BFE features a stockless Hawk Pump Tactical as its standard shotgun.
- Fallout: New Vegas likewise features a stockless Hawk Semi-Auto Tactical, fitted with wooden furniture and a drum magazine, as the "Riot Shotgun".
The AA-12 (also known as the Auto Assault-12 and formerly the Atchisson Assault Shotgun) is a shotgun
designed in the year 1972 by one Maxwell Atchisson. The original design of this weapon served as the basis for many other autoshotgun designs
, such as the Daewoo USAS-12
, among others. Its barrage of death
is fed either from an 8-shell box magazine or either a 20-shell or a 32-shell
drum magazine. Many Youtube
videos and fan commentaries have dubbed it "The Deadliest Shotgun in the World".
It's become heavily associated with the use of FRAG-12 rounds
, to the point that people often think it's the only gun capable of doing so; they are actually designed to be compatible with any 12-gauge shotgun that can load 3-inch shells.
- G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra: Used by Duke.
- It should be noted, however, that it's depicted as some kind of rechambered high-caliber machine gun.
- Predators: Used by the mercenary Royce. His is outfitted with a Surefire M900 weaponlight-foregrip and one bitchin' camo pattern.
- The Expendables: Hale Caesar uses one during the latter parts of the film. His use of the weapon goes hand-in-hand with Big Damn Heroes, Bang Bang BANG!, Blown Across the Room, Ludicrous Gibs and Stuff Blowing Up. It's also fitted with an awesome flashlight/lasersight attachment.
- This gun is so Bad Ass that when it show up again in the sequel, when Hale has to lend it to Trench Mauser, he threatens him if it he doesn't bring it back.
- 24: It appears in Season 7.
- Ultimate Weapons
- Lock 'n Load with R. Lee Ermey
- Killing Floor: This game is basically Shotguns Are Just Better personified. In this game, the AA-12 is loaded with the 20-shell drum magazine. Needless to say, as long as a buddy can cover your reloads, no zombie will get anywhere near you.
- The Club: Dubbed "The Enforcer". Loaded with the 20-shell drum magazine - in this game, the gun's range doubles as an Instant Death Radius.
- Modern Warfare 2: The AA-12 is used by the Russians and Shadow Company. It is fitted with an 8-shell magazine and has a range pathetic enough to embody Short Range Shotgun. Its rate of fire is also slower in multiplayer than in single-player.
- Grand Theft Auto IV: Available with a drum mag in the Ballad of Gay Tony expansion pack as the "Automatic Shotgun"note . It is also available as the "Explosive Shotgun", which can be noticed by the fact that it ejects green shells. Needless to say, it is very powerful.
- Army Of Two: Available in the sequel, The 40th Day. At first fed by the 8-shell box magazine. Then later you can purchase 20-shell drums for it.
- Combat Arms: Featured as the highest-tier shotgun in the game. There's even a "Dominator" version with foregrip and arctic camo paint. Each version features the 20-shell drum magazine.
- Spec Ops: The Line
- Serious Sam 3: BFE nods to the AA-12 with its "AS-24 Devastator", repeatedly referring to that weapon as a shotgun and making reference to the Atchisson name in NETRICSA's info on the gun. In the game itself though, it acts as a rocket launcher with much higher round velocity than the normal rocket launcher, making it suitable against targets that like to change its position quickly, but its ammo is much rarer than the rocket launcher.
- Added in the Blue Sun mod for 7.62 High Caliber as a very rare and expensive late game weapon.
Winchester Model 1897
Not to be confused with the 1887 above, the 1897 was a pump-action shotgun and a modified version of the 1893 pump-action developed by—who else—John Moses Browning. The shotgun, like many before it, was primarily a sporting and hunting weapon for most of its life until the onset of World War 1. When America entered the war, they added an iconic vented barrel shroud and a bayonet lug. The weapon was so effective in trench warfare and so terrifying that the Germans considered its use a war crime
and threatened to kill anyone they captured who used it (The Americans responded by stating they would do the same to German prisoners caught using SMGs). After the end of the war, the "Trenchgun" continued to see service right into the Second World War, though it was largely replaced by the Winchester Model 1912 (basically a hammerless version of the 1897) and the Ithaca 37. Despite this, the 1897 is the more famous and the one most likely to be seen in a WW2
film/game/show, likely due to its devastating reputation in WW1
and intimidating appearance. It's a Rare Gun
today, especially the trenchgun variant and is a highly sought-after collectible by both Wild West and World War 1/2 enthusiasts.
- Cool Action "Slam firing". Because the shotgun's action lacked a trigger disconnector, this meant that all someone had to do was keep the trigger pressed down and pump the action as fast as they could to keep the shotgun firing.
- Just about any WW2 game, movie or TV show where a character uses a shotgun, most likely in the "Trenchgun" configuration with the barrel shroud and the bayonet.
- In the Resident Evil remake, the civilian version makes a rare appearance as the game's shotgun, replacing the 870 from the original.
- The Mummy: Rick O'Connell uses a takedown trenchgun in a few futile attempts to (re)kill Imhotep, but has more success with his undead priests. Said film includes O'Connell assembling the gun aboard the ship at the beginning of the film.
- Mayberry's courthouse has one, which Sheriff Andy takes a hold of during the episode "The Big House".
- Shows up in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull...used by a Russian Soldier, oddly enough.
- A thug uses one in Black Lagoon to breach a door.
- George in The Book of Eli has one.
- The Wild Bunch seems to love them, as almost the whole gang uses them at one point or another.
- For that matter, so do The Untouchables on the opposite side of the law.
- Red Dead Redemption gives it the generic title of pump-action shotgun. Another rare appearance by the civilian version given that the Trenchgun was not even developed yet.
- Gunslinger Girl has this as Triela's shotgun of choice, complete with the bayonet.
- Killing Floor adds one in its Halloween 2012 update. Unlike every other shotgun in the game, this one is mean for the Firebug perk, and as such sets what you shoot with it on fire.
- This is the eponymous Desert Punk's most used weapon, which was a gift from his father. Besides regular shot he also has special ammunition he uses such as smoke, flash, and explosive shells.
Franchi/Beretta SPAS- 12
The Trope Codifier
for Shotguns Are Just Better
in media, the SPAS-12 is the most well-known dual-action shotgun – it's capable of both pump- and gas-operated semi-automatic action. There was a kerfuffle with the US authorities about what the acronym SPAS meant: it was originally meant to spell S
hotgun, but due to said conflict, it was renamed S
hotgun. Chances are, if you're from outside the US, when you hear the word 'shotgun', this is the model you'll think of first.
- Cool Stance: Nine times out of ten, the SPAS-12 is held at hip height with its stock folded above the frame.
- Cool Action: Even when it's on semi-automatic mode, it'll be cocked by the pump action.
- The Vollmer VK-12 Combat Shotgun from First Encounter Assault Recon embodies Shotguns Are Just Better. Its accuracy is a full aversion of Short Range Shotgun, its capacity is monstrous at 12 rounds, and the power of each shell trumps even the game's BFGs. It only loses out on armor penetration, which real life shotguns loaded with shot are notoriously bad at.
- The entire Half-Life series makes use of it, always with devastating results. In Half-Life 2, it's strangely missing its stock.
- It's also the staple of the Grand Theft Auto series. In Grand Theft Auto III, it's pump-action, while in Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, it seems to be full auto, and it's semi-automatic in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. In the latter, its small spread, fast but controllable firing speed and quick reload make it Awesome yet Practical – Vice City gives it an odd set of animations that make it all but useless in a firefight.