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Easily recognized by its distinctive top-mounted removable box magazine, the Bren was adapted from the Czechoslovak ZB vz. 26, with its caliber changed to the standard .303 British round. The name "Bren" is a contraction of "Brno" (where the Czechoslovak original was developed) and "Enfield" (where the British version was adapted). Its 30-round box magazines limited its firepower (100-round pan magazines also existed for it, but the original iron sights couldn't be used while they were fitted and they were restricted to anti-aircraft use), but they were much quicker to change, and their gravity-assisted feed made them more reliable, especially when firing prone. The weapon's low rate of fire (500-520 rpm) allowed it to keep firing for much longer, while changing an overheated barrel was quite simple. The Bren was also renowned for its accuracy, so much that there is a persistent myth that it was too accurate and British machine gunners would deliberately damage the barrel so as to increase the spread and make it perform better at suppressing enemies. While a Bren is quite precise in semi-auto, numerous tests throughout history have demonstrated that a Bren fired from a bipod (much less fired unsupported) in automatic bursts will have a wider spread than a tripod-emplaced Vickers gun.
After WWII, the Bren was redesigned into the L4 which used the 7.62x51mm NATO round, and could use the same magazines as the FN FAL, seeing service in the Falklands war alongside all other Commonwealth conflicts of the postwar era. Bren Guns were also supplied to Nationalist China by Canada, chambered in 7.92x57mm Mauser. A sizable amount were captured by the Chinese Communists, who later converted them to use the 30-round magazines of their Type 56 assault rifle. In 1952, the Taiwanese created the T41, a Bren Mk II chambered in .30-06 Springfield and using a straight 30-round magazine. Curiously, there's not many examples or pictures of the T41 floating around, so it's likely it only saw limited service in the Taiwanese military, and that only a few were built, presumably for testing.
- Every World War II movie involving a British or Canadian force of at least squad size will have at least one of these present.
- One mook in Lock, Stock & Two Smoking Barrels carries one on the raid of the drug den. Turns out to not only be Awesome, but Impractical (and this is lampshaded) but its user gets Hoist by His Own Petard when he leaves it unattended.
- Appears in the various Call of Duty games set in World War II, since the various games have British-focused missions and the Bren gun is easily recognizable due to its top-loading magazine; in the campaign appearances, it's overall superior to the BAR in the American campaign due to the slightly higher mag capacity and the fact that, since the devs didn't forget to let friendly redshirts spawn with it, you can actually replenish its ammo.
- Referenced in the refrain by Noel Coward in his song "Could You Please Oblige Us With A Bren Gun?", managing to be both patriotic yet satirical of the notoriously poorly supplied and organized Home Guard. It's quite a catchy tune besides.
- British Bren Carriers will obviously have one on-board in Company of Heroes. British Infantry Sections can receive some from an upgrade which does decent damage against light vehicles, and its suppressive fire can temporarily stop the heavily armored tanks.
- Bren Guns appear in Men of War (specifically, Assault Squad) as standard for British machine gunners and Bren Carriers also have one on board.
- Used by a mook in Dr. No to fire at Bond and Honey as they take cover behind a sand bank.
- Appears in The Siege of Jadotville in the hands of several Irish soldiers. Its legendary accuracy is displayed when Bill Ready uses one as an improvised Sniper Rifle at one point to take out The Man In White, as it has a greater effective range than his scoped Lee-Enfield.
- The Bren is used by the Commonwealth Support class in Day of Infamy.
- Ghost Recon Wildlands features a heavily-engraved Mk 2 with the "Veteran" pack, with the carry handle and bipod removed in favor of a vertical foregrip.
- An early-game LMG available in Wasteland 2. For some reason, it's chambered in 5.56, though this is lampshaded by its description, saying that it appears to have been "looted from a museum, taken apart, and put back together by an idiot."
- Murdoc's Winnebago, which was shown in somewhat full outside detail in MTV's Cribs, seems to have a Bren on top of it, for some reason. Then again, it is Murdoc.
- Appears as "BREN Anti-Air" in SYNTHETIK. It's chambered in "0.9 cm Split Shot", which fragments into two ricocheting projectiles after leaving the chamber. This, along with a perk that gives it increased damage against bossess, compensates for its small magazine and propensity to overheat.
- A 3-star Machine Gun in Girls Frontline. She is part of Welrod's squad of British weapons. Her Neural Upgrade grants her use of L4 barrel group, increasing damage and accuracy at the cost of small hit to fire rate.
The BAR, for all intents and purposes, ended up a little ahead of its time. Chambered for the same .30-06 Springfield ammunition as standard-issue rifles, and weighing over 19 pounds unloaded, the weapon was too heavy to be an infantry rifle and inadequate as a light machine gun. In particular, it had no quick-change barrel, and its 20-round box magazine limited its firepower, while its heavy recoil and the traditional semi-pistol-grip butt-stock's reaction to such recoil made accurate firing difficult. Reliability issues were also common if the weapon wasn't cleaned regularly, due to its complex fire-rate reducer and corrosion-prone gas cylinder, and the muzzle-mounted bipod was also notorious for being flimsy - many American troops just took it off and used the weapon without one to save weight. Nevertheless, it was well-liked by its users for its sheer firepower, indestructibility, and its significantly lighter weight compared to other machine guns of the time.
The BAR's traits essentially made it a predecessor to the Squad Automatic Weapon concept. It was in this role that the BAR truly shined, with the platoon-level LMG duties being given to another Browning design, the M1919 medium machine gun, while the BAR was issued at squad level by the Army and fireteam level by the Marines. It continued in service with the US military right into The Vietnam War, eventually being replaced by the M60; the US National Guard continued to use it into the 70s, and some countries continued to use the BAR all the way into the 1990s. The modern FN MAG/M240 is also based in part on the BAR's action, except flipped upside down and adapted to belt-feed using an MG 42-derived top plate.
The weapon was widely adopted and copied by other countries such as Belgium, Poland and Sweden, who produced it in various calibers and with their own modifications, including quick-change barrels and pistol grips. A lightened variant, the Colt R80 Monitor, with a shorter barrel, pistol grip, no bipod, and a Cutts compensator, was also advertised to US law enforcement, and, at just 6 kg (13.2 pounds), was the lightest automatic weapon to fire the .30-06 round. As of 2014, a company called Ohio Ordnance Works is also offering the Heavy Counter Assault Rifle, a modernized BAR fitted with polymer furniture to reduce the weight further (at just 12 and a half pounds with the full-length barrel) and accessory rails, available in both .30-06 and .308 in civilian semi-auto and military/law enforcement select-fire variants.
- Well-planned Control Layout: The BAR's selector switch (which doubles as the safety) is set so that full-auto firing is the very first option when taken off safe mode and that semi-auto (or low rate of auto fire in later versions) is the option after that. Browning, just like Kalashnikov, thought about combat stress. Any panicked soldier who mashed the selector switch all the way forward would not set it to fully-automatic-high-rate-fire mode, thus preventing the likeliness of instantly emptying a loaded magazine.
- Missed Opportunity: The Colt R75A, an export commercial variant of the BAR with a finned quick-change barrel, weather-proofing covers for the magazine well and the ejection port, and a sturdy bipod mounted on the gas tube rather than on the barrel, could have been adopted for service in World War 2 as a proper light machine gun. The problem came from US Army Ordnance Corps, who mandated that any improved version of the M1918 was required to have almost complete parts interchangeability with older variants. As a result, the R75A was flatly rejected by the Army since it could not use spare parts from the original M1918.
- Anything set during World War 2 and featuring the US military is likely to include the BAR being hefted by a squad's automatic rifleman. In videogames, it's typically the period equivalent of a BFG.
- It's also popular as a BFG in crime stories set in the first half of the twentieth century: Truth in Television, as a number of gangs famously used the weapon, most notoriously Clyde Barrow of Bonnie and Clyde, who had stolen a couple of M1918s from a National Guard armory and modified them by cutting down the stock and sawing off the barrel just forward of the gas regulator. These sawed-off BARs were somewhat concealable and, while only barely controllable, were absolutely devastating when he used them to ambush police officers and bank security guards at close range. He was killed using a variant of the same weapon, the Colt Monitor.
- Reiben is the designated BAR man of the squad in Saving Private Ryan. He loses the first one after jumping out of the LCVP at Omaha Beach, and when asked where his weapon is, replies, "Bottom o' the Channel, Sarge. Bitch tried to drown me!" He quickly finds another one on a dead man and keeps it for the rest of the movie.
- Mooks in The Rundown.
- Weapon of Choice for Creepy Twins Hansel and Gretel in Black Lagoon, though one must wonder how they're exactly able to fire it on full auto and stay on their feet.
- Featured in L.A. Noire, most prominently in the case "Manifest Destiny." Flashback scenes depict it as the standard infantry rifle for some reason. Rather surprising, considering how exceptionally well-researched the rest of the game is.
- It makes its requisite appearances in Call of Duty:
- It shows up in the original game and its United Offensive expansion, powerful enough to be a one-shot kill except at extreme ranges in the expansion, though in return ammunition is extremely limited, since it's very rare for allies to show up carrying one; the only guaranteed appearance of one is in the "Alps Chateau" mission, where you start with one. It gets a selector switch to swap between regular full-auto and a "slow auto" for more precision firing.
- Also available in Call of Duty 2, functionally identical to before save for the removal of the "slow auto" mode. It's slightly more available, with a few defense segments in the American campaign letting you grab one, though you're still limited on ammo sources based on how often the game spawns allies with the gun.
- Call of Duty: World at War: In the mission "Hard Landing", your character starts with a BAR as his primary weapon, but you'll likely quickly run out of ammo for it and have to switch to something else; like other appearances, it's relatively rare outside of that level. It's also the second weapon unlocked in multiplayer, at level 4, where it hits harder and is relatively more mobile than most of the other machine guns to make up for its extremely small magazines (only matching the FG 42 in multiplayer).
- Call of Duty: WWII only features it in multiplayer, where it's had to be nerfed several times.
- Appears in Day of Infamy for the US Support class, with the option to equip a bipod for supported firing and a sling to more quickly switch to and from it.
- Appears in Fallout: New Vegas: Dead Money as the Model D version chambered for .308 rounds.
- In Fallout 4, this gun appears to be the basis of the Combat Rifles and Combat Shotguns (unlike in the previous game, where the latter was based on a PPSH).
- Added in the Blue Sun mod for 7.62 High Caliber, with the recruitable mercenary Gus spawning with one. Like in real life, it's best used as a sort of heavy rifle rather than an LMG.
- American Riflemen squads can be upgraded to use this weapon in Company of Heroes.
- Appears in BloodRayne as the "M1918GAR."
- Appears in several Medal of Honor games. Medal of Honor: Airborne in particular gives it several upgrades including a "jungle-style" magazine attachment and adjustable sights. In Medal of Honor: Pacific Assault, it's the Weapon of Choice for Conlin's friend and superior Frank Minoso. He gives it to Conlin after getting wounded just before the Battle of Tarawa.
- Appears in the Battlefield series starting from 1942, in the hands of the US Assault troops and initially Soviet troops before a later patch gave them the more proper DP-28.note
- Serafine from Lackadaisy wields one that she has named "Boudreaux." She's customized it with a carving of an alligator on the front grip and a "Clyde Barrow Custom" sawed-off barrel for extra maneuverability, but even with the shortened length, the gun is still absolutely massive compared to Serafine's slight frame.
- In Rising Storm, the weapon is made available for the Automatic Rifleman, and, on the Guadalcanal map, the Machine Gunner class. Upgrades include a field-modified grip and a bipod.
- The BAR reappears as the standard LMG for the ARVN and as an optional loadout for the NLF in Rising Storm 2: Vietnam.
- Available in Girls Frontline as a 4-star MG. A bubbly, if work-shy, young(?) lady with allegedly fragile hair, a pair of aviators resting on her head, and an outfit that seems to have been influenced by a WWII-era US Army officer uniform. She thinks she's an AR.
- Hell Let Loose features this weapon as the default weapon for the US Automatic Rifleman class, and is their answer to the German STG 44.
Based on the earlier M1917, also designed by John Browning, the M1919 is an air-cooled recoil-operated medium machine gun that fires from a closed bolt. It has no quick-change barrel, which lowers its effective rate of fire, though this was somewhat offset by its low fire rate of 400-600 rounds per minute, lessening the need for barrel changes. Its primary use was as a tripod-mounted infantry weapon, although the original M1919 was first designed as a drastic modification of the water-cooled M1917 for use in tanks. Tank gunners had vehicle-mounted gunsights (so the gun itself had no iron sights) and a need for air-cooled weapons, as changing cooling water on the M1917 (or any water-cooled machine gun for that matter) was a dangerous job made more dangerous for tank crews, as tanks tend to attract lots of enemy fire (to say nothing of the dangers of broken water jackets or the fact that a vehicle-mounted water-cooled machine gun carried more weight than an air-cooled gun). The most common variant of the M1919 was the M1919A4. Others included the M1919A6, which added a quick-change barrel, buttstock, and bipod in an attempt to make it man-portable, and the AN/M2 (not to be confused with the .50 caliber M2 Browning heavy machine gun) aircraft mounted machine gun, which had a lighter construction and a faster rate of fire of 1200-1500 rpm.
The M1919 has been used and manufactured by many countries, and as such has many different chamberings. US M1919s go with .30-06 Springfield, whereas European ones go with 7.92x57mm Mauser,note captured Soviet ones go with 7.62x54mmR, Argentinians used the 7.65x53mm Argentine, Brits with Battleships go with their .303 British, and French ones use 7.5x54mm French.note
Since it's the standard general-purpose machine gun during that time, the M1919 is all but guaranteed to appear if the media features American armed forces during WWII, though they will be often seen more on tanks or as an anti-infantry MG position, if not completely superceded by the larger and more famous M2.
The M1919 can be considered the FN MAG's ancient predecessor - while the MAG's action is actually based on the M1918's, the two share many similarities, particularly being used for nearly everything (the M1919 is used for infantry support, aircraft armament, anti-air emplacement, machine gun positions, and tank-mounted coaxial and/or turret guns) and having a reputation for being nigh-indestructible (i.e it always works). The fact that both are mainstays for US service for their respective eras (the M1919 until The '90s, and the MAG and its own progeny beyond that) doesn't hurt either.
- As noted above, it appears in any World War II media that features Yanks with Tanks.
- The titular M4A3E8 Sherman tank in Fury has three M1919s: the bow mount operated by Private Norman Ellison, the coax operated along with the main gun by Corporal "Bible" Swann, and one on a pintle mount in front of Wardaddy's hatch.
- All over the place in Call of Duty (the WWII ones at least), since said franchise features the Americans heavily. United Offensive, which introduced the weapon to the series, and World at War in particular allow the use of a bipod to mount the weapon and use it as a turret, and 2 also features it rather extensively (though without the ability to use the bipod).
- Gabe Jones from Captain America: The First Avenger famously wields a one-man portable version with a chainsaw grip as his primary weapon for most missions.
- Mounted on a Coast Guard speedboat in Thunderball.
- Company of Heroes has this machine gun attached to Jeeps, American Machine Gun Emplacements, and any American tank.
- Featured heavily in Band of Brothers, in both the standard A4 tripod configuration as well as in A6 light machine gun form in later episodes.
- Dr. Strangelove. General Ripper carries one in his golf bag.
- The A6 shows up in Strike Witches as the primary weapon of Francesca Lucchini; it had belonged to Shirley, but she loaned it to Lucchini after she had misplaced her own weapons. An A4 also shows up in The Movie, used by nameless soldiers on the ground.
- In Death Wish 3, Charles Bronson uses one of these to mow down dozens of street gang members terrorizing his community.
- In Men of War, the M1919 appears mounted only onto US military vehicles, but some can be removed and carried by infantry, boasting an ample 250-round belt, the largest of any hand-carried weapon in the game.
- The various American tanks in Girls und Panzer mount M1919s as coaxial or secondary weapons.
- In Brothers in Arms, the gun appears in all three games in different variants and configurations. In the first two games, the A4 variant is shown on fixed tripods as well as on the turrets of Stuart tanks, while in the third game the A6 variant is used exclusively by the machine-gun team.
- In Rising Storm, the A6 variant is used by the American Machine Gunner class on all maps except Guadalcanal. Unlike most other weapons in the game, it comes with no upgrades whatsoever. Its principle advantages are its large ammo belt, better stopping power, and longer sustained fire, with its disadvantages being low ammo reserves, less accuracy at range, long reload and barrel change, and less mobility than its Japanese LMG counterparts.
- The A6 reappears in Rising Storm 2: Vietnam as the main medium machine gun for the ARVN. On some maps, it's also given to the NLF.
- In Tim Burton's Batman films the Batmobile has a pair of deployable Browning M1919s housed in its front fenders.
- Hell Let Loose issues the A6 variant to the US machinegunner class as their only weapon.f
In the early 1900s, Colonel Louis Chauchat and armory employee Charles Sutter collaboratively designed and produced an inexpensive magazine-fed "machine rifle", a man-portable automatic weapon that fired the same 8mm round as the standard-issue Lebel rifle. This weapon, the Chauchat-Sutter, was adopted in small numbers for aircraft use. When World War I broke out, the French military recognized the importance and potential of a light, man-portable machine gun, and decided to adopt the Chauchat-Sutter, after extensive testing showed the design was just about adequate for general use. The Chauchat-Sutter design was then modified by moving the magazine from the original top mounted position to the bottom, and orders were given to produce and issue the gun, which was officially designated as the Fusil Mitrailleur Modele 1915 CSRG (Automatic rifle model of 1915 Chauchat-Sutter-Ribeyrolles-Gladiator), but nicknamed after Colonel Chauchat himself.
The Chauchat was a select-fire weapon, utilizing a long-recoil operation cycle based on that of the Remington Model 8 self-repeating rifle (patented by none other than John Moses Browning), except that the Chauchat fired from an open bolt, with a cyclic rate of fire of around 240 rpm. Its safety catch doubled as the selector switchnote . It can be considered the precursor of the modern squad automatic weapon, as its primary role was to provide squad-level automatic fire capability in a light package without a heavy tripod or large crew. It also pioneered features that wouldn't become standard until many decades later, such as the in-line stocknote and a forward pistol grip.note At 20 pounds, the Chauchat was lighter than most other machine guns of World War I, relatively inexpensive to craft due to being made from stamped parts instead of forgings, and could be produced in bulk rather quickly even by factories that didn't specialize in firearms. That the Chauchat could be supplied in large numbers in short order made it the most common automatic weapon on the Western Front, something that the French soldiers appreciated. As Colonel Chauchat put it, his weapon was supposed to be lightweight so that it could fire on the move during an assault. This doctrine, "marching fire," would eventually be perfected by later generations as the "combined arms assault." This doctrine greatly appealed to the French generals of the era, who favored offense above all else and were very frustrated by the defensive stalemate of trench warfare.
The weapon, however, was infamous for being finicky thanks to the majority of production being handed to Gladiator, a bicycle company with little-to-no prior firearms experience (the late-war examples produced by the SIDARME steelworks starting in 1918 lacked many of the issues of the Gladiator-produced guns). The sights on many Gladiator-made models were misaligned, the gun would almost always fail to feed on the first round if the magazine was loaded to its nominal full capacity (due to an overstressed follower spring), the flimsy magazine had an open side (to act as an ammunition counting function, and a carry-over weight-saving feature from the original airplane-mounted Chauchat-Sutter) that attracted dirt like a magnet (not helped by the ammunition getting oiled for smooth operation, and the cause of about 75% of stoppages in the 8mm version), the thin, loose bipod and relatively poor ergonomics meant it was difficult to keep on target beyond short bursts, and the gun had serious heating issues which would cause the receiver and barrel to distort during periods of sustained fire, eventually causing the barrel to seize within its shroud at the rearmost position after about 120 rounds of continuous fire until the gun cooled down.
The real kicker, though, was Gladiator's .30-06 conversion, the Mle 1918◊. This quickly gained a reputation as one of, if not the worst automatic firearms ever made. The powerful .30-06 round increased the heating problems to the point the gun locked up after a short burst, and incorrect metric conversions led to over 40% of guns being rejected at the factory, and those that weren't often still had chambers that were too short. This meant that the action of the gun would force the case neck into the breech so hard that the extractor could not get the cartridge out, instead stripping the case rim or tearing the bottom of the cartridge off completely. Most soldiers wouldn't even get through a full magazine before giving up on it. Or rather, they'd never get that far: almost none of the .30-06 guns ever made it to the front line since soldiers would swap them out for other weapon. A suitable replacement, the M1918 BAR, finally entered service in 1918, but did not reach the front until late in the year due to production problems. note
Despite its problems, the Chauchat remained in service throughout the war, and for some years after, owing to its sheer availability, if nothing else, also seeing service with various other armies throughout Europe. German flamethrower troops actually took some liking to captured Chauchats because they didn't have mobile supporting machine guns of their own (the primary German machine gun of the era was the very heavy water-cooled DWM MG08, not very portable at all despite attempts to make it a light machine gun in 1915 and 1918). Said troops rechambered the captured Chauchats to fire 8x57 IS and used improvised magazines to fit the original magazine wells and magazine release catches. The Belgian army kept their version (which was chambered for 7.65mm Belgian Mauser and given fully enclosed magazines, which didn't let dirt in at all) in service well into the 1930s. So did the Polish army, who first received 2000 surplus French Chauchats during the Polish-Soviet War, actually found them alright enough to order 9869 after the war ended and standardized the Chauchat as the Rkm wz.15. In the late 1920s, the Poles rechambered many of the guns to successfully fire 8x57 IS (the most popular rifle cartridge in Central Europe during the depression era, owing to German surplus and familiarity/popularity of the Mauser rifles), and kept them in service until the mid-1930s as the Rkm wz.15/27, where 2650 Polish Chauchats were sold to Mexico. Surprisingly, quite a few Chauchats served during and after the Fall of France in 1940, and several were encountered in Vietnamese hands during the Vietnam War, as well as Syrian hands in the ArabIsraeli Conflict.
- Charley's War. "Pig Iron" carries one when Charley's unit fights alongside American troops. He tries to use it against a German machinegun nest, but it jams on him.
- Several characters carry it in The Lost Battalion. Cepeglia and Rosen display it to some new arrivals and declare it to be "a piece of garbage".
Live Action TV
- R. Lee Ermey fired one on his TV show, Lock 'n Load. He expects it to blow up in his face, but only manages to fire four rounds before it completely jams up note . He then refuses to try firing it again. Beforehand, he referred to the gun as a "piece of crappé".
- Appears in Fallout Tactics as a Joke Weapon. It's literally useless; there's no ammo for it and it will not even fire.
- Appears in Verdun in both the regular and .30-06 M1918 variants, with the regular Chauchat being the standard LMG for the French and the M1918 being nicknamed "The Worst" in game and available in the Horrors of War DLC to the Americans.
- Appears in the Battlefield 1918 mod as the standard LMG for the French.
- Appears in Battlefield 1, added in the They Shall Not Pass DLC. There's a couple of changes, like for one, the fire rate is increased from a sluggish 240 RPM to a somewhat more acceptable 360 RPM, along with making it a slow but powerful light machine gun in comparison to the other options for the Support kit. Battlefield V later also added it as part of it's final update.
- The Chauchat is given some time on Forgotten Weapons. Ian demonstrates that unlike other machine guns, the original Chauchat can be fired on the march WITHOUT jamming and with just about enough accuracy to force any potential surviving foe to take cover or surrender. For that matter, he fixes the horrible 1918 model and gets it to shoot over 100 rounds before it jams open due to overheating. One reader also sent pictures of a Yugoslavian Chauchat, indicating that the gun was used when better items were not affordable (when one says affordable, one means immediately available in bulk for mass issue to an army for a given price tag per unit).
First introduced in 1928, the Pulemyot Degtyaryova Pekhotny (Degtyaryov infantry machine gun), or DP, was developed by Vasily Degtyaryov. It was the primary light machine gun of the Red Army from the Spanish Civil War to just before the Korean War. Chambered in the 7.62x54mmR cartridge, it is easily recognized by its distinctive 47-round top-mounted rotating pan (ie flat drum) magazine (and also contributed to its nickname, the "Record Player"). It had exceptional reliability and a high tolerance for dirt; in tests it fired over 500 rounds even after being buried in sand and mud. That said, there were still some issues with the weapon - in particular the bipod was flimsy enough that it would often break when the weapon was fired on rough ground. Its recoil spring was also wrapped around the gas piston, directly under the barrel, which could cause it to lose temper and cause feed issues with the weapon when overheated; this was partially acknowledged with a relatively low rate of fire of 550 rounds per minute, which also eliminated the need for a changeable barrel. In addition, the pan magazines were rather heavy, difficult to load (in fact, crews needed specialized loading tools in a separate kit just to refill the magazines), and prone to being damaged, making them somewhat ineffective for sustained fire.
Most of these issues were ironed out in the upgrade to the DPM around 1943, which utilized a more robust bipod and moved the recoil spring into a tube projecting from the rear of the weapon above the stock (also necessitating a redesigned stock, and in turn the use of a pistol grip). Degtyaryov wanted to create a "universal" weapon, that if you could fire and maintain one version then any other version wouldn't be a problem for you either, so the Soviets built it in plenty of versions, issuing it to infantry troops as well as fitting it to tanks, aircraft, and even the sidecars of motorcycles. Thousands of DPs were supplied to the Republicans during the Spanish Civil War as part of Soviet aid, becoming the main light machine gun for the Popular Army and International Brigades in the later years of the war. Many were captured by Finland during World War II (nearly 10,000 captured, compared to the 3,400 M26 machine guns they built themselves), enough that they simply stopped making the M26 and used the DP as their primary machine gun for the duration of the war and beyond. There are still some of them in service that were fired as recently as the 2011 Libyan Civil War and the 2001-present Afghanistan War. After WWII, the Soviets issued a conversion kit to enable the Degtyaryov to be converted to a belt-feed; the resulting RP-46 is a relatively rare sight and not particularly well-known. Nevertheless, it served as the standard light machine gun of the Red Army until replaced by the RPD starting from 1953.
- Carried by many Soviet soldiers in Enemy at the Gates.
- Seen in many WWII-set video games that involve the Eastern Front, such as Battlefield 1942, Call of Duty: United Offensive, Finest Hour and World at War, Red Orchestra: Ostfront 41-45 and Red Orchestra 2: Heroes of Stalingrad.
- Added in the Blue Sun mod for 7.62 High Caliber, though said mod also makes 7.62x54mm ammo much less common due to removing the surplus of Obrez Mosins from the low-level spawn list.
- Both the DP-28 and the rarer belt-fed RP-46 are available for support gunners in Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon with the Island Thunder expansion.
- Soviet Guards Rifle squads can be upgraded with these in Company of Heroes 2, allowing them to temporarily blind vehicles. Combined with their PTRS anti-tank rifles, they can downright destroy light vehicles and deal some damage to medium armored vehicles.
- Tachanka's primary gadget in Rainbow Six Siege is a DP-28 with a shorter barrel mounted on a tripod. Its info claims it's the RP-46, though Tachanka is said to seek out original Soviet-era parts for his gun, and even mill his own if he can't find them, so it's vaguely possible he somehow got his hands on an RP-46 and modified it to resemble the older DP-28 just because he liked its look better.
- The vehicle-mounted version of the Degtyaryov, the DT, can be seen mounted on various Soviet tanks as secondary armaments in Girls und Panzer.
- Used exclusively by the Viet Cong in Rising Storm 2: Vietnam. A later update added the RP-46 variant exclusively for the NVA, which is a belt-fed variant of this gun, and thanks to that has the ability to sustain fire for much longer.
- Used in many films that depicts Soviet or Soviet-allied forces, either a prop version of the real thing or a dressed up M2 or other large machine gun.
- Used by John Rambo in both Rambo: First Blood Part II and Rambo III, captured and turned against Soviet forces in both films. Rambo II has a mocked-up M2, Rambo III has an interesting version: the DShK used by Rambo to shoot down the Hind is actually a DShK, captured by the IDF in the ArabIsraeli Conflict. But later on, when production was relocated, it became an M2 mockup.
- The 1988 movie The Beast also does this, because whilst shot in Israel (with a Soviet tank, no less) the DShK is just a mocked up M2. Captured Soviet-made tanks were often refitted by the IDF with the M2.
- The invading Soviets in Red Dawn (1984) have M60s mocked up as the DShK mounted on their vehicles.
- R.U.F rebels mounted them on pickup-trucks in Blood Diamond, and so did the Somalis in Black Hawk Down.
- The soldiers of Hotel Moscow use one mounted on a truck in Black Lagoon.
- Appears every so often in Metro 2033 and Metro: Last Light, where it's only seen as a mounted weapon, and for good reason, between extremely limited ammo and severe overheat. However, anything on the business end of the barrel is not long for this world or the next. A handheld version, modified to fire shotgun shells, is also usable in both games.
- Shows up mounted on a Russian tank in The Punisher MAX during the Mother Russia arc, when Frank is confronted by a pair of Russian commandos while in a nuclear silo base. Unfortunately for the Russians, Frank manages to hijack it and turn it against them. Major carnage ensues◊.
- Shows up in Far Cry 3 and Far Cry 4 as a mounted weapon on tripods and vehicles, and the somewhat rarer but more powerful alternative to the M249 in these roles.
- Tripod-mounted DShKs are usable in Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater.
- Mounted DShKMs can be used as both anti-personnel and anti-air weapons by the NVA and Viet Cong in Rising Storm 2: Vietnam. Some, which can be found at certain ammo resupply points, can even be moved around and set up across the map.
The MAG is partially derived from the BAR with a trigger and feed mechanism based on the MG 42. The MAG's designer Ernest Vervier was the protege of FAL and Hi-Power designer Dieudonné Saive, who in turn was a protege of John Moses Browning.
The MAG has been used by too many countries to list here. Notable license-producers include the United States as the M240, the United Kingdom as the L7, and Sweden as the Ksp 58.
- Used in Rambo: First Blood Part II mounted on Soviet vehicles, even though it really shouldn't be.
- Turns up in Battle: Los Angeles mounted on vehicles all over the place.
- The last light machine gun available in the multiplayer of Modern Warfare 2. Strangely, despite being the last one and firing a bigger bullet than the others, it is statistically the weakest LMG in the game simply because it's the fastest-firing one available; it competes with mild recoil despite its rate of fire (which can be reduced further after just ten kills to unlock the Grip) and a faster reload than the other belt-fed machine guns.
- In Battlefield 3 it's available as a support class unlock in multiplayer. While not usable in single player, it can be seen in the hands of Montes. Also one of the options for coaxial machine guns for the US M1A2 tank, LAV-25 IFV, and M1128 tank destroyer. Strangely absent in the normal light vehicle mounted role, most US vehicles have the M2 Browning mounted instead.
- Added in the Blue Sun mod for 7.62 High Caliber as a sort of big brother to the Minimi.
- Used to perform the eponymous Waltz with Bashir, an Israeli soldier wildly firing one into the streets of Beirut under a massive portrait of Lebanese president Bashir Gemayel.
- Trench Mauser and Yin Yang fire one each from a helicopter during their Big Damn Heroes moment at the climax of The Expendables 3.
- The Island Thunder expansion for Ghost Recon adds the M240G, a variant used for both vehicle-mounted and hand-held roles by the US Marine Corps, as an option for support gunners. It also shows up in both Advanced Warfighter games, the M240C coaxially mounted along the main gun of stolen Abrams tanks in the first game and the M240G returning as a usable weapon in the PC version of the latter.
- Added to PAYDAY 2 for the 2015 "Crimefest"; owing to being the bigger brother of the M249, it is given its similar Swedish military designation, "KSP58".
- In Suicide Squad (2016), one of The Joker's henchmen (the one wearing the goat's head mask) uses an M240B when breaking the Joker out of Arkham.
- Whateley Universe: Eldritch uses a heavily modified M240 as her fire support weapon of choice, in addition to her other weapons; when she was known as Range Instructor Erik Mahren, the Devisor and Gadgeteer students would compete to see who got to add on to it. As with the Barrett, she is more than capable of carrying it and the ammunition to feed it more or less indefinitely, even without having to put it in her Hyperspace Arsenal.
- Somewhat common in the Delta Force games, with Land Warrior and Task Force Dagger utilizing the M240G while Black Hawk Down and Xtreme switch to the M240B.
- ''Xenonauts features it as the machine gun in the ballistic weapons category. While outclassed by laser, plasma, and magnetic weapons later, it can still be useful for suppressing fire.
While generally well-regarded, in recent years, the M249 has developed a reputation for being quite temperamental, as many of the guns are worn after two decades of operation.
The original M249 was eventually developed into the Mk 46 variant, which includes accessory rails and removed several features deemed unnecessary to lessen its weight. The Mk 46 in turn has been developed into a slightly larger 7.62x51 version, the Mk 48, to finally replace the M60. The Mk 48 is actually lighter with a 100-round belt than an M60 is with no ammo at all, and it's a more reliable gun to boot. Like its big brother, the FN MAG, the Minimi family was designed by Ernest Vervier.
- Cool Action: Using the M249 in the place of a rifle, as one of the largest guns that can be believably held and fired by one person, often the team's Big Guy, treating it like a larger, more powerful assault rifle.
- American Sniper, features both the M249 SAW, and the Mk 48 Mod 0 variant. The former is used exclusively by Marines, and the latter is used by Chris Kyle's fellow Navy SEALs "Biggles", and Marc Lee.
- The M249 gets its spotlight in modern warfare movies such as Black Hawk Down.
- Common in the Battlefield series starting with 2, where it's the primary weapon of the USMC's Support kit. Battlefield: Bad Company features the Para version as Sweetwater's primary weapon in the campaign and, as before, the starting machine gun for the Support kit in multiplayer, while the second game moves it to the Medic kit as their first unlockable alternative to the PKM. Another Para with the Mk 46's stock and rail system returns for Battlefield 3, once again as the first non-side-specific weapon unlocked for the Support kit, while Battlefield 4 moves on to the Product Improvement Package variation, where it's Irish's Weapon of Choice in the campaign, with the player able to acquire one for themselves in the penultimate level and unlock it for multiplayer by choosing to sacrifice Irish at the very end. It also makes sporadic appearances in Hardline, though this time only available as a mounted weapon owing to machine guns as a whole being switched into limited Battlefield Pickups rather than a weapon players can choose to spawn with.
- Shows up in The Punisher MAX as one of Frank Castle's signature light machine guns. It has its most memorable appearance in Up is Down, and Black is White, where after an arrogant and psychotic capo has the ingenious idea of desecrating the remains of Frank's family, Castle responds by going on a one-man warpath across the criminal underworld, raking up 68 bodies in a single night.
- The M249 was the only available machinegun in Counter-Strike before Global Offensive introduced the Negev, but is pretty useless for its price due to poor accuracy.
- Some away teams in Stargate SG-1 and Stargate Atlantis have the Paratrooper configuration of the M249.
- Gabriel Shear (John Travolta) keeps one of these in the boot of his TVR Tuscan Speed 6.
- Battlestar Galactica. Kendra Shaw uses one in Razor when storming the Hybrid's vessel.
- Used by Ty Lok and later Tequila himself in Stranglehold.
- The go-to BFG in BLACK, with great damage per bullet and a massive 150-round magazine. Sometimes you have to take out gun emplacements where the soldiers are using it best to use explosives.
- Another part of Homura Akemi's dakka-rich arsenal from Puella Magi Madoka Magica.
- Available in 7.62 High Caliber in several variants: the original Minimi, the Minimi Para (with a telescoping stock and short barrel), the SPW (a Para with rails for mounting optics), and the Mk 46 Mod 0 (covered in accessory rails). The Blue Sun mod, of course, adds some more variation.
- Available in Call of Duty 4, both as an infantry weapon and a mounted gun. Modern Warfare 3 features an M249 Para mocked up as the Mk 46, this time solely as an infantry weapon, and Call of Duty: Black Ops II has the up-chambered Mk 48 in the same role. It appears once again in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (2019) as the "Bruen Mk 9", where the weapon's emergency magwell is actually usable if the player opts to use 60-round quad-stack magazines instead of the usual belt boxes.
- Fallout: New Vegas and its hybrid LMG, mentioned under M60, has the receiver, magazine, stock, and pistol grip portions of an M249.
- When the military come to Aya's rescue in Parasite Eve 2, a few soldiers are seen using M249s when they take out almost 50 Golems at once. If you are on the True Ending path of the game, Aya can buy one of these from the requisitions officer right after this scene.
- Used by Batou in the second Ghost in the Shell movie to deal with some Yakuza thugs.
- The M249 Para appears in PAYDAY 2, as the KSP (a reference to the Swedish military's designation for it, "Kulspruta 90"). Attaching the Solid Stock and Railed Foregrip turns it into the Mk 46.
- Relatively common in Rainbow Six, starting with an M249 E2 in Rogue Spear: Urban Operations. The two Vegas games make the odd decision to feature both the Mk 46 as a starting weapon and the SPW as the last weapon of its class, but then give them the exact same stats and nearly the exact same model (only the handguard is different).
- In Rainbow Six Siege it's usable by Brazilian BOPE operator Capitão and Australian SASR operator Gridlock.
- A common sight in the Ghost Recon games as well, starting with the E2 in the original game and its expansions as the standard weapon of Support soldiers. Advanced Warfighter features the SPW, incorrectly referred to as the Mk 46 or Mk 48 depending on the game, while Future Soldier does feature the Mk 48 as the first of the Ghosts' machine guns. The Mk 48 also returns for Ghost Recon Wildlands.
- Appears in Half-Life 1: Opposing Force as a useable weapon. Ammo for it is fairly rare for an automatic weapon (despite the high-definition pack also giving everybody M4s that should share ammo with it), and it's presented as having enough recoil to push Shepard back with sustained firing.
- The M249 is the signature machine gun of the Far Cry series, one of only three weapons (the others being the Desert Eagle and the machete) to show up in every game in some form.
- It's one of the most powerful weapons in the original game, the signature weapon of Richard Crowe, and can be looted from him after killing him in the final confrontation with him. A few of the regular mercs under his command start using it at the end of the game as well.
- Far Cry 2 uses it in both handheld and mounted forms. It's more commonly mounted at checkpoints and on technicals in the first act of the game, with the PKM being more common as a handheld weapon; in Act 2 this changes, with the handheld M249 being available for purchase after doing one mission for the Arms Dealer, while the mounted ones quickly give way to the more powerful M2 and Mark 19.
- Far Cry 3 and Far Cry 4 feature the "MKG", essentially an M249 redesigned so its large belt-boxes feed into the STANAG magwell like a regular box magazine. Once again, it's in both handheld and mounted variations, the former being stashed away until the second half of the game and the latter more common in the first half before the stronger DShK takes over.
- A more proper M249 with a regular belt and a Para stock returns for Far Cry 5, this time featuring as an early-game machine gun; as of patches, it's less accurate than the starting M60, but fires faster and is only slightly weaker.
- The Mk 46 version appears in Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots, able to be bought by Drebin once you reach Act 4. It's the fastest-firing machine gun in the game, but also the weakest due to using 5.56x45mm rounds, while the rest use either 7.62x51mm rounds (M60E4 and HK21E) or 7.62x54mm rounds (PKM).
- In the DC Extended Universe, the M249 appears in Man of Steel, used by the US military against the invading Kryptonians, while in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, one of Lex's henchmen uses one out the window of a car against the Batmobile.
- The M249 and Mk 46 appear as usable weapons in The Division.
- Common in the ARMA series, the first game utilizing the M249 E2, which returns for the second alongside the Mk 48 for Force Recon in the main game and Delta Force in Operation Arrowhead, and the Apex DLC for the third featuring the Mk 46 with toggleable faster and slower fire rates as the Syndikat criminal faction's machine gun, here renamed the "LIM-85 5.56mm".
- XCOM: Enemy Unknown: The Heavy's LMG is heavily based off the Minimi, and its EXALT equivalent is an even more faithful rendition of the real weapon. Curiously, its fire rate is variable: when straight up shooting a target, it fires at about 600 RPM cyclic, but when used for suppression, it goes up to around 900 RPM. Also, when firing this weapon, the Heavy puts it at waist level and holds it by the handle at the top.
- Bucky Barnes' Weapon of Choice in the Marvel Cinematic Universe after his stint as the Winter Soldier is a Para SAW with a hundred-round casket magazine and a HAMR dual optic; he uses it in the Siberian facility in Captain America: Civil War and during the Battle of Wakanda in Avengers: Infinity War.
- The "Needlegun" in the first Devil May Cry highly resembles an M249, especially in the rear half, though as its name implies it fires some variety of needle instead of regular bullets, and it's the only weapon you can use in the first-person underwater segments.
- The basic machine gun in Ironsight, used by some bots in PvE modes. It's named the Mk 46, though it just fits the Mk 46 rails over a normal M249 E2.
The original multi-barreled bullet-hose, designed by Richard Gatling in 1862. Gatling hoped the weapon would reduce the size of armies and serve as a deterrent by showing everyone how futile war would be with such destructive firepower. He did reduce the size of the army the Gatling Gun was pointed at by a fair bit, but otherwise, the Gatling was simply added to the arsenal as the world's first "machine gun".
The Gatling Gun used multiple barrels in a circular rotating cluster, operated and fired by hand crank (as such, it is not an automatic weapon). Each barrel loads, fires, and ejects once per revolution as the cluster rotates, giving each barrel time to cool down, and allowing for a higher rate of fire than single-barreled weapons. There were a number of different mountings, but the most common was a wheeled carriage like a cannon.
The weapon was first used during the American Civil War, and would go on to find success for the next half-century or so. It was infamously used by many imperialists against natives to expand colonial empires (most notably by the Americans against Native Americans in the Indian Wars and the Filipinos and Spanish during the Spanish and Philippine-American wars, and the British in their African colonies).
The manually-operated Gatlings were later replaced by single-barrel recoil- or gas-operated "automatic" machine guns, like the Maxim below (which would go on to fill a similar role in expanding colonial empires), but rotary multi-barrel weapons came back into their own when it was discovered that electric motors replacing the hand crank could allow for any even faster rate of fire.
Though the term "Gatling Gun" only correctly refers to the original, modern pop culture applies the name to every multi-barrel machine gun these days. Gatling's attempt to render war futile instead birthed the progenitor of some of the deadliest weapons currently used to kill regular infantry and later, scaled-up versions that could do the same to tanks.
Oh, and the thing's legal for anyone with a Class-III permit to own and fire. You just have to afford one, and the rather exorbitant permit fees, first. Never mind the fact that you'll burn through $2,000 worth of ammo in less than a minute...
- The Heavy's largest gun, the Brass Beast, is basically a Chainsaw Grip BFG version of the electric motor Gatling Gun. It packs more firepower than the more modern miniguns and grants some resistance to damage while spooled if the Heavy is below half-health, but is also slower to spin up, and slows the Heavy down to an even slower crawl while shooting.
- In The Outlaw Josey Wales, Josey's career as a wanted outlaw begins when, after witnessing the rest of his old Confederate unit being gunned down after being tricked into surrendering their arms, he commandeers one of the Gatling guns they used and uses it to wreak havoc on them in revenge.
- The villainous drug dealer Kanryuu Takeda from Rurouni Kenshin bought the Cranked version of the Gatling gun from the black market and puts it in deadly effect after the duel between Kenshin and Aoshi had just ended as Aoshi's fellow Oniwabanshu (Beshimi, Hyotoko, Shikiho and Hannya) gave their lves to protect Aoshi from the deadly weapon and bought Kenshin some time to approach Kanryuu. The conclusion comes with slight differences: In the anime, one of Beshimi's tourniquette darts plugs into the ammo belt thus jamming the weapon while in the manga Kanryuu just ran out of bullets. Kenshin then gives him his just desserts without killing him.
- The Gatling gun features heavily in Total War: Shogun 2's Fall of the Samurai DLC. It's exactly as unfair as it sounds to use gatling guns against swordsmen and spearmen. Shown nicely in the trailer as a line of them cuts down a massive army of samurai.
- The cranked version shows up from time to time in Tex Willer, usually in the hands of the US Army, and is feared by everyone who knows what it is and isn't a soon-to-be-dead Fearless Fool.
- The most notable instance has a pissed-off Tex grab a Gatling from the carriage and empty the magazine on one man.
- In the Westworld episode "The Adversary", Teddy Flood commandeers a Union Gatling gun to mow down attacking soldiers.
- The Gatling gun appears as a mounted weapon in a single mission in Red Dead Redemption.
- A number of moles use Gatling guns mounted on bats in Rango. Rattlesnake Jake has one mounted on his tail.
- One of these makes an appearance among the Chinese Emperor's elite forces in The Man with the Iron Fists, sent to retrieve the gold stolen on Jungle Village. The Blacksmith (the titular Man With The Iron Fists) makes mention that this one gun makes the forces The Dreaded even amongst the big bunch of martial arts masters (some of them with Supernatural Martial Arts) that compose the opposing force, because the Emperor has given orders to Shoot Everything That Moves and the elite forces are packing enough ammo to destroy the entire town with gunfire if that's what it takes.
- Appears in the climax of The Magnificent Seven (2016) and used by the villain's mercenaries. Nicknamed the "Devil's Wrath" by Goodnight, it's depicted as a terrifying wonder weapon that practically shreds the town, and for once is utilized in its intended purpose as a long-range support weapon rather than a free-spinning bullet hose. Three of the Seven die trying to bring it down.
The GAU-19 is chambered in .50 BMG/12.7x99mm, with selectable fire rates of 1000, 1300, or 2000 rpm. It is intended to be mounted on armored vehicles or aircraft.
Like the Minigun (and even more implausibly, due to its larger caliber, weight, and recoil), the GAU-19 is sometimes portrayed as a hand-held weapon in popular media.
- A hand-held version of the GAU-19 appears as a usable weapon in Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories.
- Appears as a stationary and boat-mounted weapon (along with two rocket launchers) in Resident Evil 5, where it deals piddling damage, despite its supposed large caliber rounds. They return in Resident Evil 6.
- Mounted GAU-19s are usable in Uncharted 2: Among Thieves.
- A handheld version appears as Sgt. Delgado's weapon in Clive Barker's Jericho. According to the manual, his version is chambered in 7.62x51mm rather than .50.
- Mounted GAU-19s can be used by Lo Wang in Shadow Warrior (2013).
- A handheld version appears in Call of Duty: Black Ops II as the "Death Machine", and also as mounted machine guns. It also appears in Advanced Warfare as a mounted sentry gun, and in the dual-wielded "XMG".
- Appear as vehicle and helicopter-mounted weapons in Homefront.
- A short-barreled version is mounted on the XD-1 Accipiter in Battlefield 4.
- The Patriarch mounts one as an Arm Cannon in Killing Floor 2's Return of the Patriarch update.
- Dead Frontier has the GAU-19, which is described in the wiki as "Weighing in at a hefty 139 pounds and having a recoil force exceeding 500 pounds, the GAU-19 normally cannot be wielded by a man and is intended for use in helicopters, on ships and vehicles..."
The M134 is an offshoot of the rotating-barrel cannons the U.S Air Force had for its fighter aircraft. During The Vietnam War, transport helicopters encountered stiff resistance from North Vietnamese Army soldiers firing machine guns and RPG's from the dense jungles. Helicopter crew-serviced weapons, which at the time consisted of single-barreled weapons such as the M60, could not put down the volume of fire required to suppress enemy positions without overheating or jamming and leaving their vehicles even more vulnerable. General Electric designers then took the rotating barrel cannon designs and scaled them down to serve as crew-serviced weapons. The resultant weapon was called the M134 and the men who used them quickly took to calling it a minigun, since it was a miniature version of those rotating cannons. Since then, the M134 has been a staple of U.S Military service, deployed on transport helicopters, attack helicopters, fixed-wing gunships and brown-water navy boats. The U.S Air Force uses their own versions of the M134, the GAU-2/A and the GAU-17/A, distinguishable by a barrel shroud on the front of the barrels. A similar weapon was developed by the Soviet Union, the GShG-7.62 for the Mi-24 helicopter gunship and sees use today in helicopter hard point-mounted gunpods.
Naturally, the M134 is just too damn cool not to show up in a great many films and video games. Of course, they like to take certain liberties with how it is portrayed. While it shows up plenty of times bolted to a helicopter or SUV, they also put it in the hands of their heroes as a hand-held weapon. Doing this in real life would require you to lug a backpack the size of a VW Bug full of heavy bullets and a couple of car batteries around and would knock you on your ass with a quick burst. Those don't belong here, check out the RareGuns.Machine Guns page for examples there.
- Cool Action: "Spooling", the term often times used when the barrels of the minigun begin to spin. Although in reality a minigun requires very little if no build up to fire, in fiction they often take a second or two to "warm up", often accompanied by a building whine and lots of metallic clicking and clacking noises. Cut to the protagonists or antagonists putting on their best Oh, Crap! face. Note that the larger weapons that the Minigun was based on, such as the M61 Vulcan 20mm cannon, do take a few seconds to spin up, which can cause problems when used against fast moving targets (such as fighter planes or, in the case of Anti-Air applications, anti-ship missiles). In practice, this just means the first few shots are slower than the following ones.
- Predator: The first instance of the weapon being handheld was when Jesse Ventura was seen with one, helping wipe out a Central American fort.
- In Iron Man 2, one of War Machine's many, many weapons is a shoulder-mounted GAU-17/A. While super-strong Powered Armor can certainly support the weight with no problem, Rhodey seems to have an implausibly large store of ammo for it. Justin Hammer also shows off a Vietnam-era M134 when he's showing what weapons he's going to put into the War Machine armor.
- Batman uses a specially modified M134 to perform a forensic examination on a few pistol bullets used by the Joker in The Dark Knight.
- Mounted on several of the competition vehicles in Death Race.
- Shows up as a robotic sentry gun in Alone in the Dark (2005) during the climatic fight with the dreaded CGI Demons.
- In addition to the more famous handheld one seen later in the film, the post-apocalyptic opening of Terminator 2: Judgment Day shows a Tech-Com soldier firing one from the back of a pickup and a short-barreled one is seen on a mount next to Future!John Connor.
- One with almost adorably tiny barrels is fired on a mount in a van in Last Action Hero and another can be seen mounted on a helicopter.
- An M134 stands in for a YakB 12.7mm gun on the faux Hind-D in Rambo III.
- One of the very first film appearances of the minigun is in an AC-47 "Puff The Magic Dragon" in The Green Berets.
- They show up plenty of times in the Battlefield series, mostly mounted on transport and attack helicopters.
- GAU-17/A miniguns are mounted on UH-60 Blackhawk and AH-6 Little Birds in 'Black Hawk Down. One of the scenes in the movie features U.S Army Rangers trying to take cover from the large amount of spent shell casings raining down on them from one of these.
- Twin miniguns are present on the Level 2 and 3 Sentry Guns in Team Fortress 2.
- Appears as a running gag in They Came and Ate Us: Armageddon 2: The B-Movie. Referred to by all and sundry (including the narration) as "one of those really amazing rotary machine-guns, like the one Blaine used in Predator", until...Elvis skipped around the car and threw open the trunk.
"Hoopla!" he was heard to say. "This is a 7.62mm M134 General Electric Minigun. Up to 6,000 rounds per minute. 7.62mm x 51 shells. 1.36kg recoil adaptors. Six muzzle velocity of 869m/s."
"Oh," said Rex. "So that's what it is."
- Then, a short time later: "Mind you, can you work out what six thousand 7.62mm rounds actually weigh? Imagine carrying that lot about. It didn't half make a noise though. And a lot of smoke and those flames that come out at right angles to the barrel. Probably looked best in slow motion.
- In Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, one of Lex's henchmen uses a Minigun against the Batmobile during a high-speed chase.
- In Suicide Squad (2016), the Joker's Number Two, Mr. Frost, uses a helicopter-mounted minigun to keep the Suicide Squad pinned down when the Joker attempts to free Harley Quinn from the Squad.
- Mounted Miniguns are usable in Left 4 Dead. They can easily shred through Infected, but it tends to overheat quickly, and the limited traverse arc means you can get swarmed quickly.
- In a somewhat over-the-top example, Jamie uses a Minigun to test the adage of "shooting a fish in a barrel" in MythBusters. The Build Team also uses one to chop down a tree in a later episode.
- Six-barreled Miniguns chambered in .50 BMG are used by Ma-Ma and her men in Dredd in an attempt to kill Dredd and Anderson. The rounds succeed in chewing through an entire floor, with the Judges and their hostage just barely escaping.
- Rising Storm 2: Vietnam features the M134 mounted on the AH-1 Cobra attack helicopter and OH-6 Loach observation helicopter. In addition, it's the primary armament of the AC-47 Spooky Gunships that support USA, USMC, and ARVN soldiers.
The basic HK21 is chambered in 7.62x51mm NATO and designed to feed via belted ammo, though swapping out the barrel, bolt, and ammo feed allows it to feed from box magazines and be chambered in other calibers, including 5.56x45mm and, supposedly, 7.62x39mm Soviet. At least as of the development of the "Export" model in the 80s it is the basis for an entire family of G3-derived machine guns, accompanied by the HK11 (which is designed primarily for use with detachable magazines rather than belt feeding), the HK13 (a 5.56x45mm version of the 11) and the HK23 (another 5.56mm weapon meant for use with belted ammo like the 21). The HK13 and 23 also served as the basis for respectively the GR6 automatic rifle and GR9 light machine gun, "sanitized" (i.e. having no serial numbers or identifying marks) weapons meant for special forces use, which came with integrated optics rather than ironsights and pre-applied woodland (GR6C and GR9C) or desert (GR6S and GR9S) camouflage finishes. A .50 BMG version, the HK25, was also considered but never went into production. A gunsmithing operation in Illinois also created the incredibly rare "HK51B", essentially an HK21 cut down to the size of the MP5 submachine gun.
- The HK21E appears in Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots, where it can be purchased from Drebin, or stolen from a Rebel militiaman in the Rebel Hideout in the Middle East immediately before you actually meet Drebin for the first time. The Rebel describes it as a enemy gun, but none of the PMCs in the Act actually use it, as noted by the fact that it has no ID lock to keep him (or you, if you steal it) from firing it. It is the only machine gun with 3-round burst and semi-automatic fire modes in the game.
- The "Cigar Girl" fires a heavily modified HK21 mounted on a speedboat in The World Is Not Enough.
- Appears as a usable weapon in the two Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter games.
- The HK21E is usable in PAYDAY: The Heist and its sequel, as the "Brenner 21". In the former game it gets upgrades along the Assault tree such as a (cosmetic-only) bipod and reflex sight alongside a gradually-increasing mag capacity; in the latter it gets a wide variety of attachments, such as a longer barrel to increase accuracy and stability at the cost of damage, a shorter barrel and foregrip to go the other way, an ergonomic pistol grip, and an actually-usable bipod allowing for rock-solid stability.
- Appears in the third Max Payne game, both as a usable and mounted weapon.
- The HK21E anachronistically appears in Call of Duty: Black Ops. It feeds from magazines rather than belts, normally using regular 20-round magazines from the G3 that somehow hold 30 rounds, or taking drums that double that capacity with Extended Mags.
- The HK21E appears frequently in the Rainbow Six series, added with the Urban Operations expansion for Rogue Spear and returning for Raven Shield and the Vegas games. Raven Shield also makes use of the lower-caliber HK23E, while Siege features the G8A1, the German military version of the HK11, usable by the German GSG-9 operator IQ, their Recruit and the Peruvian APCA operator Amaru.
- The GR9S was planned to be featured as a standard weapon for Overwatch soldiers in Half-Life 2. Despite the integrated scope, the player wouldn't have been able to actually aim with it, Secondary Fire instead taking the form of three-round bursts.
- The HK21 was added to MAG as a new machine gun for Raven with the Escalation DLC, called the KP21.
The MG4 is a belt-fed 5.56x45mm light machine gun designed by Heckler & Koch, developed in the 1990s and first entering service in 2005. Essentially a German counterpart to the FN Minimi, it is intended to replace the MG 3 as a squad support weapon and compliment it in other roles (the reason for the MG 3 being phased out now is a big lack of production tooling). The weapon is in use with the German, Spanish, Portuguese, Albanian, Brazilian and Saudi Arabian militaries, as well as Estonian, Turkish and Malaysian special forces. It is also the basis for the MG5, a similar weapon upscaled to take 7.62x51mm, which is being issued to replace the MG 3 in those roles the MG4 hasn't already done so. The MG5 is visually nearly identical to the MG4, but shares very few parts owing to the different caliber.
- Call of Duty:
- The MG4 is used by some Russians in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. It shows up relatively early in multiplayer, generally overlooked due to its low rate of fire giving it the lowest damage-per-second of its class and a bug where the suppressor doesn't keep you off the enemy's radar when firing it, but performing decently well when used at longer ranges due to that low rate of fire and a lack of recoil making it incredibly accurate even without the foregrip attachment.
- The MG5 variant appears in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (2019), this time under the name "M91".
- Appears as a usable weapon in the multiplayer portion of Splinter Cell: Blacklist.
- Appears in Battlefield 4, showing up in the first level of the campaign as a collectible weapon, and conversely being the last weapon available for the Support kit in multiplayer (where save for its recoil pattern, it's identical to the M249 you can get for beating the campaign).
- The MG4 is usable in Alliance of Valiant Arms. Its fire-rate is unusually slow compared to the real weapon.
- The MG4 appeared as a usable weapon in Ghost Recon: Phantoms. Wildlands and Breakpoint upgrade to the MG5, named as the "MG121".
- An MG4 equipped with a SCAR-style stock appears in Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City.
- Appears in Project Reality as the Bundeswehr's standard light machine gun.
- Appears as a usable weapon in Medal of Honor: Warfighter.
- Both variants appear in Warface, the MG4 in its short-barreled KE variation and the MG 5 under its developmental "HK121" name.
- The MG4 appears in Days Gone as the MG45, where it is used by Ripper heavy gunners and some friendly NPCs. It can be bought at the Lost Lake camp at trust level 3.
- The MG4 and MG5 appear in Girls Frontline as five-star MG-class Dolls. While the latter is among the so-called "Big Four", the former is infamous for having very low stats for her rarity and being a low-end second-volley MG.
The Lewis is easily recognized by the pan magazine on top and the massive forced-air cooling barrel jacket, which was later discovered to be completely unnecessary when old aircraft-mounted Lewis guns were issued to ground troops in the Second World War. The magazine of the infantry version held 47 rounds of .303 British rifle ammunition (or .30-06 Springfield ammunition for the Americans), while those fitted to the planes of the Royal Flying Corps utilized larger 97-round pans. At 28 pounds, the gun was quite heavy, but still lighter than most other machine guns of the period — light enough to be carried by one man — and very reliable. The Lewis's rate of fire was around 500-600 rounds per minute, and although it was a bit hard to reload (due to the pan magazine), the British Army loved it enough for it not only to be used throughout the entire first World War, but by all three services in World War II note , serving alongside the Bren Gun in the Home Guard, and wouldn't be retired for good until after the Korean War. The Spanish Civil War also saw heavy use of the Lewis Gun. 800 were delivered and used by the International Brigades, especially with the British battalions, as WW1 veterans serving in the Brigades were familiar with its use. The Lewis Gun is also particularly famous in Australia as the weapon used in an infamously disastrous attempt to curb the emu population in 1932.
Both variants show up in media - the Infantry version,◊ which has the large air cooling shroud and a 47-round pan magazine, and an aircraft one,◊ which typically had a 97-round pan magazine (this one has a 47-rounder) and no air cooling shroud, exposing the barrel.
- Unrealistically Cool Depiction: The infantry version of the Lewis gun, while a very good machine gun when operated from its bipod or from a flak mount, is not light enough for most soldiers to fire from the shoulder like an automatic rifle. Despite this, many films and games featuring portable infantry-issued Lewis guns will portray them as oversized assault rifles, with the user holding the cooling shroud like a rifle stock. This is a BAD idea in real life, as the cooling shroud will inevitably heat up as the fighting drags on. And as mentioned before, the infantry Lewis gun weighed 28 pounds, with the majority of that weight in the barrel. The British made a device to allow the Lewis gun to be fired from the shoulder easily◊, but it seems not to have been a great success.
- Name any WWI book or movie, and chances are they'll mention or show this gun. If you see any WWI flyboy movie, they'll have one of these equipped.
- The T-21 repeating blaster in Star Wars is made from a Lewis Gun with a handful of sci-fi embellishments (surprisingly few actually, as the Lewis looks quite cool as is) and the magazine removed.
- Appears appropriately in Legionnaire, as it was the standard LMG of the French Foreign Legion in the 1920s. At the movie's climax, Jean-Claude Van Damme realizes he is the last man standing, picks up a Lewis gun, and single-handedly holds the now-breached gates of the fort against the final wave of Bedouin cavalry.
- In Richard III, the 1995 version features Ian McKellen grabbing one and trying to shoot down one of Prince Harry's planes with it.
- Used quite memorably in Passchendaele. Its long reload time is shown when the gunner has to reload and his comrade barely manages to slam in a fresh pan as the German assault continues.
- Gangster Squad: Used by one of Cohen's thugs to attack the Squad's car.
- In The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, the episode "The Phantom Train of Doom" has Indy using the gun from atop a hot air balloon.
- Used by Rourke in Atlantis: The Lost Empire.
- One of the weapons in Call of Cthulhu: The Wasted Land.
- Appears in Charley's War in the hands of several characters. Charley himself makes regular use of one during the last days of the war and is wielding it during Captain Snell's pointless final day assault on the Mons.
- A modified Lewis Gun with a scope and laser sight was added to Battlefield Hardline as a secret weapon in the Betrayal DLC, called the Syndicate Gun. It later returns as one of the automatic weapons in Battlefield 1 for the Support class.
- The Lewis Gun is the automatic weapon that the British Commonwealth used for Verdun.
- The Lewis Gun appears in the WWII game Day of Infamy. It is available as as an alternative weapon to the deafault Bren for the Commonwealth Support class.
- Men of War features this gun in the hands of elite Commonwealth troops like the Commandos.
- Medal of Honor: Pacific Assault has two of these mounted on a PT Boat that Tommy Collins board at Pearl Harbor to repel the attack. The Japanese copy, the Type 92 LMG can be carried and redeployed for combat.
- Mentioned prominently in the opening chapter of For Whom the Bell Tolls and shown as one of the more powerful weapons available to Pablo's guerrillas. It gets more screen time in the last chapters of the book, with Robert Jordan and the guerrillas using them in their defense against the Nationalist assault.
- Shows up as a 5-star machine gun in Girls Frontline.
- Used by a Black And Tan in Michael Collins to fire at civilians in a tenement building in retaliation to being pelted with food until the Tans end up on the receiving end of a Molotov Cocktail.
- Appears in Wings, in the hands of a WWI Cadet American Airman.
- Used by Rick and Ardeth in The Mummy (1999), to shoot Imhotep's massive sandstorm face. When the plane crashes, Ardeth yanks the gun off the wreckage and uses it to great effect against Imhotep's guards.
- Seen in Flyboys.
- A Japanese copy, the Type 92,◊ is seen in Pearl Harbor.
- The Lewis Guns bring down Kong in King Kong (2005).
- Snoopy mentions them at times as being the weapons of his Sopwith Camel.
- Charley's War in the hands of Charley's younger brother, Wilf, while he is assigned to the Royal Flying Corps as a gunner.
- Appears on some of the British planes in Battlefield 1. Battlefield V has it for the Medic class, though with the iron sights of the regular Lewis Gun unless it is equipped with extended mags.
- Medal of Honor: Rising Sun has the aircraft version of the Type 92 LMG (which is a Japanese copy of the Lewis gun) mounted on an elephant and a Japanese plane in the last two levels.
During World War I, the US Army Ordnance Corps found it interesting that the French used a supercharged smokeless powder version of the 11mm Gras cartridge in a scaled-up Hotchkiss heavy machine gun, which was intended to take out airplanes and armored vehicles. This oversized version of the French Army's primary tripod-mounted defensive machine gun gave the US Army an idea, so they asked Browning to develop a large caliber machine gun intended to kill warplanes and tanks. Browning said he'd do the job once the Army had a cartridge ready for him. Using research from captured German anti-tank rifle cartridges, Winchester and Frankford Arsenal developed a cartridge resembling a scaled-up .30-06 round. This was then handed to Browning, who scaled up his M1919 machine gun design to match (although he had to put a water jacket on the gun to cool the barrel). The prototype's testing was completed just as the war ended. In 1921, the new product, resembling an oversized M1917 water-cooled defensive machine gun, was ready for service. After Browning's death in 1926, the design would be revised by Dr. S.H. Green, and by 1933 it would be modified to allow for feeding from the right or left-hand sides and removing the water jacketnote in favor of a heavier barrel, birthing the still-current M2HB.
The M2 has a rate of fire of 450-575 rounds per minute and sports a distinctive perforated sleeve over the lower barrel as an aid to air cooling; aircraft mounted versions exist with far higher rates of fire, the fastest being the mechanically or electrically boosted AN/M3 which could fire 1,200 rounds per minute. The weapon has an effective range of 1.2 miles when fired from the M3 tripod, and can put shots down over four miles away. During the Vietnam War, a Marine sniper by the name of Carlos Hathcock famously mounted a scope on one and used it for long-range sniper shots, leading to the later development of anti-materiel sniper rifles chambered in the same caliber. Efforts have been underway to develop a replacement with decreased weight and recoil, as the M2 is not exactly portable; candidates included the high-tech XM312 and the XM806, but both have been cancelled because, despite being lighter and more high-tech, neither of them came close to working even half as well as Browning's nearly-century-old masterpiece - the money allocated to those projects was redirected to upgrade the existing M2s to the M2A1 standard. As such, the M2 is likely to remain a common sight for the foreseeable future. In fact, it's commonly said among both the US Army and Marine Corps that the last M2 gunner hasn't been born yet.
- Cool Action: Jumping behind one (typically mounted on a vehicle of some sort) and pulling back on the bolt with a massive CHACK-CHLACK. Firing it with at least an angry grimace on your face, usually a full-on scream which gets drowned out by the massive report. May involve pulling out or ignoring the last guy who used it. Likely involves the utter obliteration of the guy or building you are firing at.
- Seen in anything set after the First World War showing a Western armoured vehicle, ship, or fixed infantry position. Sci-fi movies sometimes use the M2 fitted with a military blank firing adaptor (a triangular fitting with a hemisphere muzzle and three tubes running the length of the barrel) as a futuristic weapon or ersatz gatling gun. The M2 is also often seen in movies dressed up as a hard-to-come-by Soviet heavy machine gun like the DshK.
- Every military game ever made that has armored vehicles in it that don't suffer from Crippling Overspecialization. It's also a standard "big gun" in fixed positions; it's often made a lot weaker and less accurate for balance purposes. A superhumanly strong character might use an M2 like a rifle, and in this case usually grips it by the barrel; this is not a good idea, as it gets hot.
- In Fallout Tactics, this shows up being used as a handheld machine gun used by Super Mutants. You can use it as well if you have incredible strength, Powered Armor, or a Mecha-Mook.
- Roadblock from G.I. Joe would swing one of these. A little lampshading is found on his bio-card, suggesting that the kind of guy who can use this as a personal weapon is someone who probably doesn't need a weapon to kill you. The action figure actually gives him a Browning M1919 instead, simply to allow him to stand up without tipping over. After all, unlike the character, the plastic figure doesn't have Super Strength.
- Speaking of Roadblock, his life-action version from G.I.Joe: Retaliation (portrayed by The Rock, no less) actually swings this beast of a gun.
- Some of the fluff from Car Wars suggests that the M2 is still alive and well even in 2040s America; in-universe, someone used a combination of this and Loophole Abuse to win a demolition derby, setting up the Vehicular Combat genre among the people.
- Doo-doot, doo-doot, doo-doot doo-doot, doo-doot. This is the gun mounted on the convicts' Jeep in Dead Rising. If you manage to defeat them, you can take it and go zombie-hunting.
- Pops up in Far Cry 2 as an upgrade over the mounted M249 in the second half of the game, delightfully sidestepping the generic "stationary bullethose" depiction by having the proper slow rate of fire and terrifying damage output.
- Will and the Sons of Guns crew assemble a "virgin" (unbuilt) M2 kit and mount it on top of the War Wagon (Will's modified Ford Bronco).
- Rambo IV accurately depicts the body-shredding ability of an M2 during a massive battle sequence toward the end of the film.
- Half-Life 1 and its fan-made Source remake Black Mesa feature them as the Marines' go-to fixed gun, and (at least in the latter) it is powerful - a short burst can and will gib any human, Vortigaunt and Alien Trooper you hit it with. Strangely, however, it's more similar to the .30 cal M1919 when it comes to size and rate of fire (it's both considerably smaller and faster-firing than the M2, capping off at about 600 RPM).
- It even appears in Warhammer 40,000. The Stubber or Heavy Stubber machine gun is basically an M2. In the grim darkness of the future, there is still John Browning.
- Browning M2 Machine Guns are mounted on Sherman Tanks, usable by a tanker from an upgrade in Company of Heroes. Their M3 Half-Tracks also has one, with an M45 Quadmount for your anti-infantry, anti-vehicle and anti-aircraft needs. French-Canadian Priests from the British's Royal Artillery Support has these too for defending against enemy infantry with Anti-Tank weapons.
- In the DC Extended Universe, M2 machine guns are amongst the weapons the military point at Superman when he surrenders to them in Man of Steel, and they're seen on Humvees throughout Suicide Squad (2016). The M2 gets the most use in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice - Bruce has a M2 as one of the guns he unleashes on Clark at the beginning of their fight, and one of Lex's henchmen uses one against the Batwing.
- One appears in Kong: Skull Island as Packard and the explorers get ready to fight the Skullcrawlers, mounted by a soldier sitting on a Triceratops skull. It doesn't really get a chance to do anything though, as the gunner is immediately eaten alive by a Skullcrawler. The aircraft variants are later used to fight Ramarak from Marlow's boat, which has four mounted in a ball turret.
- Mounted M2 Brownings are usable in Left 4 Dead 2, replacing the Minigun in the first game (except in the L4D1 remake levels).
- M2 Brownings appear many times in the Metal Gear series, either as stationary or vehicle/Gear-mounted weapons.
- The Climactic battle scene of Skyfall features a Browning M2HB mounted on a helicopter.
- The Heavy Barrel variant is a 3-star machine gun in Girls Frontline. Considered as one of the "Big Four" machine guns by the community, she is often the choice MG for new players, owing to her being given away for free, ease of upgrade, and sheer effectiveness despite all that.
- One briefly appears during the Gun Gale Online segment at the beginning of Alicization arc of Sword Art Online anime adaptation, manned by Silica of all people.
While its open-bolt gas-operated system was mechanically simple and easy to mass-produce, the M60 was plagued with issues throughout its service life. It performed well on the Army's clean firing ranges, but it was not well suited to the humid and muddy jungles of Vietnam, the environment of which (combined with the problems of sooty ammunition propellant residue) left it prone to jamming without regular maintenance. The emphasis on making the M60 a lightweight machine gun also had some unfortunate side-effects. Early iterations of the gun had alarming tendencies to fall apartnote or fail to stop firing when the trigger is releasednote . It also had a terribly-designed barrel change system, with the entire gas piston, bipod and front sight all integrally attached to the barrel - needlessly weighing down gunners as they carried effectively half of the entire gun on every spare barrel - but not having any sort of handle to safely remove them when overheated; instead an asbestos-lined glove was issued, which was easily lost in the heat of combat (it is rumored amongst infantrymen today that soldiers weren't even supposed to change the barrels in battle anyway, hence the awkwardness of the situation). Soldiers were also very annoyed that the gas cylinder vent plug key washers were not strong enough to handle the high gas pressure generated by front-line issue ammunition. This particular flaw necessitated that the machine gunner literally wrap expensive aircraft-grade stainless steel wire around the front end of the cylinder and around the rear locking key, lest the M60 literally rip itself to pieces during normal operations. By the way, the engineers at General Dynamics never fixed that issue during the Vietnam War and continued to instruct armorers to wrap wire around the gas cylinder. The M60 was manufactured in anticipation of a prolonged war against the Soviet Union, so the US Army Ordnance Corps and its associates assumed that machine guns and their users would inevitably be lost in combat long before their parts would ever wear out (in effect, the Army was treating the M60 and its user as completely disposable). The issues the M60 faced, as well as the M14 battle rifle's own issues note irreversibly damaged the US Army Ordnance Corps' reputation, which has yet to recover even half a century later.
The weapon's sheer bulk earned it the nicknames "pig" and "hog" in Vietnam, owing to it being an overly heavy weapon for long-distance marches. The receiver-mounted carrying handle's position prevented it from being quickly put into action, which meant soldiers on patrol had to hold the M60 rifle-style at waist height, where the awkward weight distribution made the machine gunners miserable in jungle conditions once they had prolonged contact with the environment. Attempts to reduce the weapon's weight in The '80s resulted in the M60E3 version, which featured a receiver-mounted bipod, a carrying handle on the barrel to make barrel changes easier, and a simplified gas system. Unfortunately, the lighter weight made the weapon wear out and overheat even more quickly, and reliability still didn't improve. Veteran machine gunners criticized the design process, calling it a "blind copycat" approach to making machine guns as the M60 was not field-tested by the soldiers who were expected to use it (especially as it was prone to breaking when users performed actions that nobody had even thought up, like racking the bolt without having an ammunition belt loaded into the receiver). On the other hand, Soviet gunmakers who obtained captured early examples from Vietnam discovered, much to their surprise and delight, that the M60 was much lighter than their own PK machine gun, spurring some of the gunmakers to craft prototype weapons along similar lines in 7.62x54R. The most promising contender made with the M60 mindset was tested and found unsuccessful, as this article relates, because the resulting prototype was too lightweight and jammed whenever rain or snow landed on the weapon. The Soviets succeeding in getting a machine gun both lighter and better in performance than the M60 when Kalashnikov and his design team created the PKM.
In the 1990s, the M60E4 (or Mk 43) was released, by which time advances in technology and manufacturing techniques allowed for noticeable improvements in both weight and reliability, rather than having to sacrifice one to improve the other as with the E3, but by then the weapon had mostly been phased out by the US military in favor of offerings from FN, the M249 taking over as a squad automatic weapon and the M240 the light/general-purpose machine gun niche.note
In 2014, a further improved version, the M60E6, was released, and subsequently adopted by the Danish Army as their new standard GPMG, replacing the Rheinmetall MG 3 to very positive feedback. The M60E6 comes with an improved rail and vertical foregrip, with the weight reduced to 20.4 pounds and the fire rate reduced to 550-650 RPM for better control. The quick-change barrel has been redesigned to use a barrel handle so barrels can be changed without gloves, the bipod has been strengthened and the front sight is now adjustable without zeroing. There have also been a great many internal improvements made to the design to fix its past reliability issues. While only the Danish Army has adopted the M60E6, the design is available as a conversion kit for older M60 models. Just don't expect veteran US Army machine gunners to want to handle any variant of the M60 ever again.
The weapon's brawny appearance and easy availability made it hugely popular in '80s and '90s action movies, with the depiction in Rambo particularly iconic.
- Cool Action: Firing the M60 one-handed is practically a trope of its own; gun in one hand, three-foot belt of infinite ammo in the other, the Action Hero walks slowly through the enemy base, firing in the general direction of men who respond by falling over in increasingly exaggerated ways. Expect lots of closeups of the action ejecting brass, casings hitting the ground, and slow motion shooting. Bonus cool points if the shooter is bellowing incoherently at the top of his lungs. Often, the M60 will get more screen time in such a sequence than any of the villains. Or the hero's face, for that matter.
- Both Sylvester Stallone (as Rambo) and Arnold Schwarzenegger (in Commando) played one-handed shooting completely straight. Charlie Sheen parodied it in Hot Shots! Part Deux with scenes where he was buried up to his waist in ejected brass, and later one where mooks who died went down a set of playground slides.
- Almost any movie set in The Vietnam War features the M60. You could also expect to see this used in action films until the '90s.
- One of Frank Castle's signature weapons. During his time in Vietnam, Frank was remarkably proficient with the machine gun, with his frequent request of "give me the sixty" resulting in a lot of dead Viet Cong or NVA troops. Barracuda uses it very frequently, having been a M60 gunner while in Vietnam, and continuing to do so while working for special forces. The Punisher MAX sees the M60 showing up very frequently, either in Frank's hands, Barracuda's or Frank's allies. In recent stories, he's replaced it with the more modern and lighter M249, although Frank will break out the M60 if he's feeling nostalgic. In Season 2 of Daredevil (2015), an M60E4 shows up in Colonel Schoonover's gun cage when Frank discovers it at the end of Episode 12.
Barracuda: Nice work with the pig, muthafuckah! Where'd you go to school?Frank: That would be Khe Sahn. Spring of '68. You fucking Army puke.
- Barracuda himself admires Frank's skill with the M60, even while Frank is gunning down his mooks.
- The M60 is still seen in some modern warfare movies such as Black Hawk Down, alongside the M240. Ewen Bremner comes perilously close to losing his fingertips in the feed tray while shooting left-handed at one point.
- Jack Black's character is handed an M60 in Tropic Thunder. Black wasn't exactly pleased when told about the M60's nickname ("Pig") and that he was a natural with it. He complains loudly when he has to carry a blank-adapted real one instead of "the rubber one the prop guy gave me. Where's the fuckin' prop guy??!!"
- Red Dawn (1984). Modified ones are used to simulate the Soviet DshK. One giveaway is that the ammo belt is feeding from the wrong side (the DshK, like most Soviet belt-fed machine guns, feeds from the right side).
- "The Passing" DLC for Left 4 Dead 2 adds the M60 as a special weapon. It's extremely powerful, and comes with a large round capacity, but it cannot be reloaded - once it's out of ammo, it's automatically discarded. One of the later "Mutations" gives the entire team these with infinite ammo.
- Naturally featured in Battlefield: Vietnam. Pre-Nerf, it was an absolute terror, being more powerful and accurate than the M16 with a 100 round magazine and it came with the same class as the only decent Anti-Tank weapon, meaning there was no real reason to take any other class except if you wanted to be a good sport. Post-Nerf, one needs to be prone if you want to hit anything and it no longer comes with the rocket launcher.
- Battlefield: Bad Company 2 features it in both the vanilla game and its own Vietnam expansion as a Medic weapon. It's Sweetwater's new Weapon of Choice in the singleplayer campaign; one notable instance has him beat a Russian soldier across the head with it and throw him over a railing without breaking stride after dismounting from a helicopter. The player can also get their hands on one, either unmodified or with an ACOG, in the level "Sangre del Toro".
- It returns in Battlefield 3, as the second-to-last unlock for the Support kit before removing the side restrictions for its starting weapons. It's also available in Battlefield 4 with the Second Assault DLC, unlocked for an assignment requiring the destruction of five enemy vehicles in the Gulf of Oman map.
- Available in 7.62 High Calibre. If you're standing or kneeling, it can only be fired "from the hip", and you must be laying down to aim it properly.
- The flash-forward scenes in the fifth season of Breaking Bad show Walt purchasing an M60. He rigs it up in his car's trunk to pop out and fire continuously.
- Appears in, of all places, Magicka, where you are rewarded with it for saving a village by sparing every single building from being torched by goatmen. And then there's also the Vietnam expansion.
- In Fallout 2 you can buy one or get it from random encounters near Redding town. It is decently powerful weapon, capable of tearing apart most low-level enemies.
- Fallout: New Vegas has a gun simply called the Light Machine Gun, chambered in 5.56mm—notable for being the only vanilla gun using that cartridge to fire on full auto. It's actually a hybrid; the forward half from the foregrip onwards is iconic of the M60. The rear half from box magazine on back is M249, as noted below.
- Most Call of Duty games from Call of Duty 4 to Black Ops II feature the M60E3, always either referred to as the improved E4 version (Modern Warfare) or the original M60 (Black Ops).
- The only weapon to appear with its real name in Perfect Dark Zero. Oddly, the usual belt-box is replaced by a belt of only 7 rounds that somehow lasts for 80 shots without decreasing in length, and it's also able to sacrifice a few bullets to launch a caltrop as an area-denial weapon.
- Appears in the first 3 Hitman games, most notably used by Pablo in Hitman: Codename 47. Its huge magazine capacity coupled with its power makes it great for going on rampages with.
- Ghost Recon features the original M60 with the Desert Siege expansion. The console versions of the two Advanced Warfighter games feature the improved M60E4 in multiplayer, and in Future Soldier the more modifiable Mk 43 Mod 1 can be unlocked as a uPlay reward alongside a modernized export version of the RPK.
- The E4 version appears in Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots, used by Pieuvre Armement PMCs in South America.
- Both the original M60 and E4 show up in Far Cry 5, under the names of "M60-V" ("Vietnam") and "M60" respectively. They both accept scopes, extended magazines and (bizzarrely) supressors.
- In the Hours of Darkness expansion pack, it's even more bizarre to see so many Viet Cong machine gunners armed with American "Pigs" instead of more period-appropriate RPDs, even if the Viet Cong did occasionally use captured weapons.
- Often appears in City Hunter as the weapon of choice of Kaori and Umibozu (at least when they aren't firing RPG-7s or M60 recoiless rifles), always from the hip. Kaori, being a tall but not particularly large woman, can't hit anything due the recoil throwing off her aim, while Umibozu can fire it one-handed (and even wield one in a hand and a M60 recoiless rifle in the other) because he's just that large and strong.
- Of all places, The Inbetweeners 2 is an unlikely work to find this weapon. Jay fires one with one hand, Rambo-style, complete with bandana during the film's ending.
- Wielded by Henry Dobbins, the biggest man in Tim O'Brien's platoon, in The Things They Carried. Fittingly, he carries it fully loaded and with spare ammo belts worn on his chest.
- In Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, one of Knyazev's men uses an M60. Unfortunatly for him, Batman takes it off him and uses it to shoot the tank of Knyazev's flamethrower, causing the tank to explode, taking out Knyazev and his henchmen.
- In The Division, the M60 and the E3 and E4 variants are available as light machine guns. Strangely, it can take a magazine mod even though there's no magazine on the model, just a dangling ammo belt that isn't long enough to match the gun's 100 bullet capacity. It's also got a really slow reload, as your character has to open the cover, pull out the old belt (even if the gun was empty!), load it a new belt of the same length and close it back up.
- Several are mounted on the Hueys in Kong: Skull Island and carried by one of Packard's soldiers as they travel through Skull Island on foot. It's also used to help distract the alpha Skullcrawler in the final battle.
- The second half of Full Metal Jacket naturally features one in the hands of Animal Mother, who prominently uses it during the film's climax to lay suppressing fire down on the sniper. Joker makes use of one to defend Da Nang HQ during the Tet offensive earlier in the film. He also once interviews a door gunner who uses one to shoot at North Vietnamese civilians as their helicopter passes over them.
- The M60s reliability issues are shown during the Vietnam segment of Forrest Gump, when it jams during the ambush that costs Lieutenant Dan his legs. The gunner and A-gunner are trying to fix the malfunction (with Gary Sinise shouting GET THAT PIG UNFUCKED!) when they are vaporized by a mortar round.
- Becomes available roughly halfway through Wasteland 2, though it will be used sparingly for a while until the player comes into enough .308 ammo to keep it fed. Notable for having the single most concise in-game description: Here comes the rooster!
- The M60 appears in PAYDAY 2 as one of the weapon featured in the Fugitive Weapon DLC pack. It is also one of the few guns in-game to bear its real-life designation.
- This is the primary weapon of Julio "Oso" Vega in Rainbow Six. However, because so many of their operations involve hostage rescue and precision suppression of terrorists, he laments that he never gets to use the gun. It finally comes into play in the final battle, where there are no hostages and all terrorists are fair game, although even then, he only uses the M60 to shoot out a floor's worth of windows and terrify the remaining enemies into surrendering.
- Available for US, Australian, and ARVN forces as their standard LMG in Rising Storm 2: Vietnam. They can be fed from either three 100-round belts in box magazines, or a single 200-round belt.
- A 4-star machine gun in Girls Frontline. As yet another reference to Rambo, her firing animation has her shooting the gun from the hip while cradling the ammo belt on her off-hand.
- Ian McCollum fires it here!
The first light machine gun to be produced in meaningful quantities, the origins of the Madsen can be traced back to the 1880s, when Danish artillery officer Captain Vilhelm Herman Oluf Madsen (the eventual namesake of the machine gun) designed a recoil-operated, self-loading rifle that was gravity-fed from a non-removable stripper clip, which can be folded down to cover the opening created when the rifle was not in use. Madsen worked together with Danish Arsenal weapons technician Rustmester Rasmussen; Madsen designed the weapon while Rasmussen fabricated it. The first design flopped, while an improved version designed in 1896 (with an enclosed gravity-fed magazine instead of the open stripper clip) was only adopted in limited numbers by the Danish navy for coastal fortification troops.
Investors formed a company (Dansk Riffel Syndikat or DRS) to commercialize the rifle, buying the patent rights from Rasmussen and Madsen in exchange for paying any future production royalties to them. By this time, however, Madsen had left the project and became the Danish minister of Defence. Subsequently, Lt. Jens Schouboe became manager of the DRS, and in 1901 he patented the design for the Madsen machine gun, with a top-mounted magazine that can hold 25/30/40 rounds. While the weapon easily jammed with black-powder cartridges, once the design was trialed with 6.5mm smokeless rounds, it performed well. The Danish Army then adopted the weapon in 1902.
Over 34 nations have used the Madsen in 12 different calibres note during its century-long service life. Imperial Russia bought 1250 Madsens for the Imperial Russian Army's cavalry forces, deploying them in the Russo-Japanese War. Later on, the Imperial Russian Air Service equipped their French-made Morane-Saulnier G and L monoplanes with Madsens, mounting the gun to fire over the propeller. Prior to adopting the Maxim-derived MG08/15, the Imperial German Army also used Madsens, chambered in 7.92x57mm Mauser and designated Leichte Automatische Muskette M15, to equip their infantry companies, mountain troopers, and (later) storm troopers.
In the interwar period, the Madsen saw further use: Warlord-era Chinanote , Czechoslovakia note , Paraguay, Bolivia, Argentina, Brazilnote and the Netherlands in East Indies note all used it in different calibers.
The gun saw further service in World War 2, in service with the Norwegians (who disliked it because their 6.5x55mm Krag version tended to jam after a few shots, leading them to give it the nickname of "Virgin Madsen"), Those Wacky Nazis (in second-line units, using captured guns), and even Imperial Japan (who, like the Nazis, used captured Madsens seized from the KNIL in Dutch East Indies). The Danish themselves kept making Madsens for the Germans in 8x54mm Jorgensen until 1942 and did not retire their last Madsens until 1954.
Even when World War 2 ended in 1945, the Madsen's career didn't end. Orders were quickly placed by various nations that now used the .30-06 Springfield cartridge, and new Madsens were chambered accordingly. Ireland still used Madsens to arm its light tanks and armored cars until the M1919 Browning replaced it in the 1950s. Portugal still used Madsens to arm its armored cars in its colonial wars in the 1960s and 70s. Brazil also used still used Madsens to arm its military police, either passed down from the Brazilian Army or captured from drug dealers (the latter example consisting mostly of old Argentine Army weapons or stolen from museums); these weapons were originally chambered in 7x57mm Spanish Mauser but were converted to 7.62x51mm NATO. It still sees occasional service with the Brazilian military police to this day.
The Madsen machine guns had a reputation for being expensive to produce, thanks to its insanely complicated action and the fact that it is composed of solid forgings, intricately machined and hand-finished to fit perfectly together. Despite this, the gun was well known to be reliable (with the exception of the 6.5x55mm Krag version used by the Norwegians), enough that it still sees service a century after its introduction.
- Trivia: The Madsen has three unusual design features:
- Because it uses a gravity-assisted feed and it features feed lips integrated into the weapon rather than the magazine, it is possible to feed and fire the weapon with loose cartridges (up to 4 rounds can be held in this manner).
- The machine gun's barrel and action form a single group that can be easily removed by pulling out a single pin and hinging the trigger group down, functioning as an improvised yet fairly rapid barrel-change system.
- Unlike similar weapons with top-mounted magazines, the Madsen is sighted along the centerline, with the magazine offset towards the left.
- Appears in The Lost City of Z, during the World War 1 segment, in a Freeze-Frame Bonus.
- Used by Danish troops in 9.April.
- M1902 Madsens appeared in Verdun.
- Perhaps the most notable appearance of the Madsen in modern media is Battlefield 1, where it is often seen in German hands, and is usable is multiplayer. It was later added to Battlefield V as well.
"The Maxim gun, and they have not."
Hiram Stevens Maxim was already a talented man, having designed gas lamps, curling irons, menthol inhalers for people with asthma (as he suffered from bronchitis himself), the proverbial better mousetrap, the very first automatic emergency fire sprinkler system, and even an incandescent lamp at the same time Thomas Edison created his own. Having found little financial success in the United States or in Canada, Maxim traveled to Europe on a consultation job. While in Vienna, one of Maxim's friends (allegedly) told him this: Hang your chemistry and electricity! If you want to make a pile of money invent something which will enable these Europeans cut each others' throats with greater facility!
He remembered from experience that whenever a rifle fired, it produced substantial recoil. With the abundance of metallic-cased self-contained cartridges and the fact that all current rifles in service now loaded from the rear end of the barrel, rather than seeing firearm recoil as a nuisance Maxim realized that the recoil could be used to force the spent cartridge out of a chamber and load a fresh one from a magazine, hopper, or belt. Over 600 times a minute in fact. In London, where Maxim had settled down for his original consultant job, he worked like a madman to forge his idea into reality, buying up several rifle barrels, lots of cartridges, and bar-stock of steel, as he had to learn basic blacksmithing in order to craft the necessary loading tools, fixtures, and accessories for his first self-loading gun. When Maxim presented his forerunner gun to the British Army during a competition against manually operated machine guns, the officers at the competition recommended he go back to electrical work, thinking him a fool and a braggart. In response, Maxim invited several nobles, members of the English Royal Family and their relatives, and foreign dignitaries (who knew very little of how the Army treated machine guns) to test-fire his gun. The performance of the recoil-operated gun even in the hands of complete amateurs astonished the soldiers who were operating the hand-cranked guns, as it spat out bullets faster than any hand-cranked gun could manage and wrought out far more destruction than was thought possible for a rifle-caliber weapon. But even then, Maxim initially had trouble selling the design, as many militaries distrusted the then-current machine guns at the time due to their propensity for jamming (either due to operator error or due to faulty ammunition) and then requiring the services of a dedicated armorer to literally disassemble them after battle for clearing such jams. Upon suggestions from Lt. Gen. Sir Andrew Clarke, Maxim simplified his design so that it could be disassembled without special tools and so that if damaged, the injured parts could be replaced within a matter of less than even thirty seconds under enemy fire. Maxim's later demonstrations included a barrel change procedure to mitigate torn cartridge casings (the jammed barrel would be saved for cleaning later while the fresh gun barrel would continue the fight), and of course, since the recoil-operated machine gun stopped firing if fed a dud cartridge, the gunner merely had to rack the charging handle to get rid of the dud, with no extensive disassembly required. The British Army still didn't adopt the gun, but allowed individual unit commanders to purchase Maxim's products privately.
British Army officers serving abroad had been having a spot of bother pacifying the natives in... well, most of the world, and after they and their subordinates personally purchased and then extensively used Maxim's new machine gun in battle they liked it so much they recommended he be knighted. Suddenly the rest of the world decided they wanted the gun too, especially after Sir Hiram demonstrated more and more against the manually-operated guns, showing the gun's clear advantages over the competition (namely, less hassle for training and maintenance). The Maxim became pretty much the standard machine gun of the world before the first World War and largely continued to be so throughout said war in the static role, with a good amount of variants, derivatives and plain old copies coming out of its initial design from nations all over the world in every full-size rifle caliber imaginable, seeing service in both world wars, the Spanish Civil War, the Second Sino-Japanese War, the Chinese Civil War, the Korean War and even into the early days of The Vietnam War in the case of the Russian variants.
Major users of the Maxim outside the British Empire include Germany and Russia/the Soviet Union, who manufactured their own versions in their respective calibers, such as the 7.62x54mmR Russian PM M1910 pictured above. The Germans also produced a lighter, portable version of their 7.92x57mm MG 08, the MG 08/15. These versions would see service through the first World War, and well into the second one. And since neither the Soviet Union nor its successor states have ever thrown anything away, M1910 Maxims have been seen on both sides of the Donbass conflict in eastern Ukraine, often mated up with red dot optics and other modern accessories. Theyre old, but they still work.
* Cool Accessory: The PM M1910 is rarely seen without its distinctive-looking green metal shield (pictured above), which has the added bonus of giving the gun crew extra protection.
- Anything set during World War 1 for most nations. The Maxim should also appear in Russian WW2 works, as it was their main medium machine gun before the SG-43 Goryunov was introduced in 1943.
- "Sweet 'n' Sour" Larry Sweeney's usual strutting routine included a spot where he would pretend he was firing one of these.
- The M1910 variant appears frequently in Enemy at the Gates.
- The M1910 variant appears in Red Orchestra 2: Heroes of Stalingrad as a Soviet mounted weapon.
- Several variants of the Maxim appear in Verdun.
- Featured in two Sandokan novels: in Sandokan Fights Back he brings one when he goes to take back his father's realm, and in Yanez's Revenge he comes to rescue Yanez with twelve. Given his enemies were hordes of spear and knife-armed Dayaks in the first case and a badly-motivated force with few many knives and a few antiquated muskets, his enemies couldn't afford to face him in open battle.
- The Russian PM-1910 variant was apparently awesome enough to inspire someone in the Red Army to write a song, "Two Maxims." The song is about a gunner named Maxim and his machine gun and their exploits against the Nazis in World War Two. Both are badly injured at one point, but are patched up and are soon back at the front.
- The Maxim gun appears as mounted weapon in Battlefield 1 and can be found both on fixed emplacements and on the Zeppelin.
- The Legend of Tarzan. George uses one in the climax to take out a steamboat, noting that it's more effective than his Walker Colts.
- A Maxim is used by Moriarty's men in Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows in an attempt to kill Holmes and Watson.
- The German DWM MG08 appears in Wonder Woman (2017), deployed against Diana when she storms the German lines. It effectively pins down Diana's one-woman assault and leaves her blocking a hailstorm of lead until Steve and his team come to her aid. She later breaks the gun in half before heading off to liberate Veld.
- Machine guns based on the Maxim gun appear as the primary weapon of Gun Automatons in BioShock Infinite.
- The Russian PM1910 is a 4-star machine gun in Girls Frontline.
During the inter-war period, the revanchists within the German military system sought to create the Einheitsmaschinengewehr, or universal machine gun. This was based on their experience during the Great War, having found that machine guns had done more effective killing than infantry rifles. To this end, the designers and commissioners of the universal machine gun concept knew that they had to come up with an infantry-issue rifle-caliber machine gun and equipment set that could be adapted to many roles, seeing as water-cooled heavy machine guns were horrible for use on the assault and that magazine-fed light machine guns (or "machine rifles" like the Browning M1918 and the Chauchat) were not very good for sustained-fire defense. Experimentation with German-designed light machine guns produced in Switzerland (to dodge the Treaty of Versailles's limitations on domestically-made weapons) eventually resulted in the Rheinmetall MG 30, the predecessor of the bomber turret MG 15 and the fighter plane's electrically-primed MG 17. But for the infantry, further development was needed. Soon, after some modifications were provided by Mauser, out came the Maschinengewehr 34.
First entering service with the German military in 1936 and seeing combat in the Spanish Civil War, the MG 34 is an air-cooled recoil-operated machine gun, widely considered the first general-purpose machine gun, adaptable for multiple roles. On its standard bipod, it could be used effectively on offense, while mounting it on a tripod made it effective for defensive fire. A modified version, the MG 34 Panzerlauf, was developed as a secondary/coaxial armament for tanks.
While well-liked by troops, the MG 34 proved to be expensive and time-consuming to manufacture owing to the style of rotating bolt used in the design (the bolt itself was complex, and its individual components needed to be hand-fitted). As a result, it was replaced in 1942 by the MG 42, though both weapons remained in production to the end of the war.
The MG 34 is chambered in 7.92x57mm Mauser, with a rate of fire of up to 900 rpm. It could be fed by belts or drums (requiring a change of receiver cover in the process), and featured a quick-change barrel for sustained fire. Uniquely, the weapon featured a double-crescent trigger system for selecting fire modes; pulling the upper trigger crescent fired the gun semi-automatically, while the lower crescent fired automatically.
- Like its later counterpart the MG 42, the MG 34 is almost certain to appear in media set in the WWII European theatre. Compared to its better-known descendant, the MG 34 is more likely to appear mounted on a vehicle of some sort (the MG 42's different barrel change system prevented it from being used as a vehicle-mounted weapon).
- The DLT-19 heavy blaster rifles used by the Stormtroopers in the Star Wars films are MG 34 machine guns painted black. The prequel trilogy's DC-15 blasters also bear a heavy resemblance to the MG 34.
- The MG 34 appears in Red Orchestra and Red Orchestra 2: Heroes of Stalingrad as the standard German machine gun. It can be used on foot, mounted on a tripod, or as tank-mounted weapons.
- Appears in the WWII-dated Call of Duty games, usable both on foot and on vehicles. United Offensive in particular features it as the Germans' portable mounted machine gun (opposing the American M1919 and Soviet DP28), able to be deployed where the player likes; it also shows up in regular mounted but not portable form for a mission or two set before the MG 42's adoption. Call of Duty 3 also features it in this sort of manner, able to actually be fired from the hip when carried but requiring the player to be prone to actually aim it.
- It's also surprisingly made an appearance in the modern-dated Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (2019), where it's usable in both Multiplayer and Single Player modes, possibly referencing its current real life usage in the Syrian Civil War by FSA soldiers.
- Usable in Day of Infamy for the Support class. Compared to the MG 42, the MG 34 uses a 50 round drum and can be aimed properly from the shoulder. It also gets select-fire capabilities that the 42 lacks, thanks to its double-crescent trigger.
- Hanna-Justina of the Afrika Korps uses the MG 34 as her main weapon in Strike Witches, where she notably makes use of its built-in bipod as a makeshift foregrip.
- Many of the German tanks in Girls und Panzer mount MG 34s as secondary or coaxial weapons.
- The MG 34 is the standard issue weapon of the Kerberos unit in The Red Spectacles and Kerberos Panzer Cop. Later installments in the Kerberos Saga replaced it with the MG 42.
- Hell Let Loose features the vehicle-mounted version mounted in all of the German tanks. Future updates plan on implementing an infantry version as an alternative to the MG 42.
The MG 42 made extensive use of pressed and stamped steel parts to cut down on cost and production times, and used a recoil operated, roller-locked mechanism augmented by a gas recoil booster which increased both reliability and rate of fire; the resulting weapon was distinctly more rugged than the rather finicky MG 34. The MG 42 remains one of the fastest-firing single-barrel weapons to not require external power, able to fire 7.92x57mm Mauser rounds at an average of 1,200 rounds per minute but sometimes reaching 1,500 depending on the weight of the individual weapon's bolt. These rates are too high for the human ear to discern the individual shots, leading to nicknames like "Hitler's Buzzsaw". A true general-purpose machine gun, it could be used in the light machine gun role with a 50-round receiver-mounted belt drum and bipod, or the medium role with a tripod and a 100-round rectangular belt box. Switching between a bipod and tripod in an emergency required no special tools, thanks to the mounting latch being spring-loaded. The MG 42 was so good, in fact, that Allied soldiers who were lucky enough to capture one would quickly swap their own light machine guns for the "Spandau". The very high rate of fire made the gun excellent at offensive saturation fire and defensive suppressive fire, and the noise it created was terrifying.
Its main drawbacks also stemmed from the gigantic rate of fire; it was incredibly loud and would deafen the gunner if fired without rest, barrel changes were frequent (and required the use of an asbestos glove to handle the heat if the crew had lost the better part of their armorer's tool kit), and ammunition consumption was very high, necessitating a good logistics connection and good troop discipline to maximize effective use of that high firing rate.
German infantry training emphasized the use of the machine gun as the primary killing force to compensate for the lack of well-trained riflemen (owing to the Treaty of Versailles forbidding Germany from having a large standing army during the Depression era). As such, the MG 42 fits into the approach of having a platoon of riflemen support and protect the machine gun (in a readily mobile fighting position) as opposed to the Allied doctrine of a static (and therefore immobile) machine gun supporting (via suppressive fire) a bunch of charging riflemen. The primary goal of the MG 42's high firing rate was to saturate a targeted zone within a very short period of time, to increase the chances of a definite kill. There was more emphasis on making the accessories of the gun (such as Lafette mount) mobile when needed, to reduce the amount of dead weight while making the MG 42 capable of accurate burst-fire (or saturation fire, if need be).
The MG 42 was the basis of some of Germany's later 7.62x51mm NATO machine guns following the war; alongside the MG 3 below there were also purpose-built MG 1s for testing various upgrades, and the MG2 made by simply converting existing '42s to the new ammo. These three guns are so similar (and externally almost identical) to the MG 42 that they have many interchangeable parts. Along with the FG 42, it was also the basis of the American M60. The US also attempted to make a .30-06 version of the MG 42 for testing, the T24, but since the two prototypes were a mishmash of newly-manufactured parts attached to original German MG 42 parts - particularly the receivers, which could only be modified so much to fit the slightly longer round - reliability was shoddy at best; while they weren't quite as bad as some rumors claim (that the designers completely failed to account for the differently-sized rounds and made a gun which physically could not cycle the longer .30-06), they were still pretty bad, with a 10,000-round torture test seeing the worse of the two prototypes suffer 51 stoppages in only 1,500 rounds.
Yugoslavia also manufactured the M53, an almost exact copy of the gun down to the chambering, the only real difference being a slightly stronger extractor and a slightly modified chamber to ease extraction of steel ammo. These variant parts are the most common on the market today, and you may even see Yugoslavia's large distinctive proof mark on the top cover of a few supposedly Nazi-era guns.
- Every World War II game, movie, or otherwise that is set in the European theatre, features this gun.
- Call of Duty features the weapon extensively.
- It's particularly common in the World War II-based games, commonly mounted at every position the Germans are holding. World at War and WWII allow it to be used portable, the former giving it a 50-round drum magazine and unlockable bipod, while the latter gives it a loose belt of 50 bullets (the drum is given twice its real capacity to act as the Extended Mags attachment) and only features it in the mounted role in the campaign, also giving the multiplayer version a noticeably slower rate of fire. It even shows up more than a hundred years after WWII in Black Ops III, mounted all over the place as the only period weapon to show up in the otherwise-Anachronism Stew-laden dream sequence of "Demon Within".
- This is the standard issue weapon of the Kerberos unit in Jin-Roh: The Wolf Brigade and StrayDog: Kerberos Panzer Cops, with multiple extra belts and a spare barrel stashed in their backpacks.
- The Helghast machine gun in Killzone is basically an MG 42 with the barrel shroud rotated 90 degrees counterclockwise.
- The M56 Smart Gun in Aliens was an MG 42 mated to a steadicam harness, with additional parts from a motorcycle.
- The Bunker (2001). Its ammunition apparently cost the makers of this war/horror movie a pound a round, so it wasn't fired often.
- Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle features a nameless Mongolian who dual-wields an MG 42 together with a PKM machine gun from the hip.
- A character in a Nick Knatterton comic has an MG 42 mounted on her bed.
- The MG 42 was added in a later update to Red Orchestra 2: Heroes of Stalingrad. Leveling up allows one to replace its initial 50-round drum magazine with a 250-round belt, while further levels reduce the rate of fire and allow you to carry extra ammo.
- An MG 42 is used in Mafia II by Vito Scaletta twice. The first time during Operation Husky, before later using one to ambush a heavily guarded target during a hit.
- Appears in PAYDAY 2 with the Gage Historical Pack DLC, as the Buzzsaw 42. Its absurdly high fire rate is preserved rather well in-game; with the addition of a bipod as of 2015's "Crimefest", it can be a complete terror that will, true to its name, saw through even Bulldozers in a couple of seconds. It can be modified with the MG 34's light barrel to increase accuracy and stability, or a "Heatsinked Suppressed Barrel" to imitate the MG 34-derived DLT-19 heavy blaster rifle from A New Hope.
- The MG 42 is usable in Day of Infamy for the Wehrmacht Machinegunner and Support classes respectively. It loads from 250-round belts and can only be aimed while deployed.
- Far Cry 4 features a stockless MG 42, modified with a side-grip and a rail atop the feed tray if the player attaches a sight to it, as the final LMG unlocked. It lives up well to the real weapon's infamy, with a high rate of fire, decent damage behind that, and a high capacity (up to 200 rounds with mods). There's also a Signature version, named after the real weapon's "Buzzsaw" nickname, unlocked for deactivating every radio tower in the game; it features a massive 400-round belt, a reflex sight with the zoom of the 4x marksman's sight, and accuracy and damage boosted to the point that anything that even gets in front of you will die in a nanosecond.
- German MG Bunkers, Motorcycles, MG Teams and Half-Tracks all have the MG 42 in Company of Heroes. The MG 42 is also an upgrade for Grenadier Squads.
- Shows up in Dr. No, mounted on a stolen patrol boat and used by Dr. No's soldiers to try and flush Bond, Quarrel and Honey out of hiding.
- Essentially the standard weapon of The Squad in Strike Witches, with Minna, Erica, Gertrud, and Eila of the 501st all using them for their high rate of fire to hit the enemy fast and hard, modified to use MG 34-style twin-drum magazines; Gertrud in particular wields two at a time because of her Super Strength granted by her magic. Other squads also make extensive use of it, including Nikka, Gundula and Edytha of the 502nd.
- In Wild Wind, Okati uses a looted German machine gun as his personal weapon.
- Wolfenstein: The New Order's prologue chapter and its prequel DLC The Old Blood feature the "MG46", which is basically an MG 42 made into a minigun by slapping on a chainsaw grip and another three barrels in a sort of spinning quad-mount.
- Hell Let Loose issues this weapon to the German machinegunner class.
The MG 3 is a general-purpose machine gun, an updated version of Germany's WWII-era MG 42.
After the end of WWII, West Germany began looking to modernize the venerable MG 42, rechambering it in the NATO-standard 7.62x51mm caliber. This new variant, the MG1, featured recalibrated sights for the different round, a chrome-lined barrel, and modifications to the bolt depending on the exact model; the MG 2 was made simply by taking wartime MG 42s and rechambering them to 7.62mm. The MG 3 added an improved feeding mechanism with a belt retaining pawl, an anti-aircraft sight, and a new ammo box, alongside the use of heavier bolts to reduce the rate of fire for easier firing from the shoulder. It shares a number of parts in common with the older MG 42.
The MG 3 would go on to serve as the main machine gun for the West German military for many years, as both an infantry and vehicle-mounted weapon, the latter role in which it continues service today. The weapon also saw wide use overseas, being license-produced by Pakistan, Sudan, Iran, Italy,note Spain, Greece, and Turkey. In The New '10s, Rheinmetall began working on a new variation to enhance the firepower of armies that still use the MG 3 or other MG 42 derivatives in the MG14z, which takes the basic MG 3 receiver and fits it with two barrels.
- The MG 3 shows up as an unlockable weapon in the Battlefield: Bad Company games, used by the Medic. It deals lower damage than most of the other machine guns, but it's tied with the PP-2000 machine pistol as the fastest-firing gun in the game.
- Alphard tries to shoot down Liang Qi's chopper with a door mounted MG 3 from her own helicopter in Canaan.
- In Gunslinger Girl: Il Teatrino, on one occasion Rico fires an MG 3 from the hip, averting for once the series' tendency for Improperly Placed Firearms (Rico is an agent of the Italian government, so she would obviously have access to such weapons).
- Available in 7.62 High Caliber as the MG 3, with the accompanying high rate of fire and fitted with a 50 round belt-drum and bipod.
- The MG 3 is the primary weapon of the Support specialist Dieter Munz in Ghost Recon.
- The MG 3 is one of the most powerful weapons your MSF R&D can research in Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker.
- One is used by Czech soldiers to shoot at James Bond in The Living Daylights.
- Appears as both an infantry and vehicle-mounted weapon in Project Reality.
- Available in Ironsight, where it fittingly has the highest rate of fire, but in return it gets smaller 75-round belts and average damage for its class (it's slightly stronger than the Mk 46, but the PKP outdamages it).
- Appears in Cruelty Squad as the AMG4, the only machine gun in the game. It is wielded by Necromechs, and fires depleted uranium rounds, with the magazine box having a radiation symbol painted on it.
As with most of Kalashnikov's post-war designs, the PK is heavily based on the AK's action, flipped upside-down and modified into an open-bolt weapon that accepts ammunition belts. The design has multiple variants for different roles, including the tripod-mounted PKS and the PKT for use in vehicles. The original has also been updated twice: the first upgrade came at the tail end of the 60s, producing the better-known PKM, which simplified production and usage and reduced the weight (from 9 kilograms to 7.5 - the PK's tripod is heavier than the PKM), alongside other upgrades and changes such as a strengthened receiver, a non-fluted barrel and a new flash hider, with more modern-production weapons also introducing black polymer furniture similar to that of the AK-74M. In 2001, the next upgrade came in the form of the PKP "Pecheneg", which switched out the original quick-change barrel with a heavier version that includes a distinctive integrated carrying handle; the weapon's weight is more in line with the original PK and is designed primarily for firing from tripod mounts as a support weapon. There is also an unofficial bullpup configuration of the PKP, with the belt box angled nearly 90 degrees backwards to feed into the relocated action (how the shooter avoids hot brass ejecting directly into their face is probably why it's unofficial). The PK and its variants are notable among belt-fed weapons for feeding from the right side and ejecting to the left, rather than the other way around; in video games, however, despite the usual conception that brass ejecting across the player's view is more "dynamic", PKs will almost invariably have their model flipped to feed from the left like most other belt-fed machine guns, even in games that otherwise never do this.
Considered one of the best general-purpose machine guns ever made on both sides of the Cold War, the PKM is naturally incredibly widespread and will be seeing service with insurgents everywhere for decades to come. It's so light and versatile that it's an increasingly common practice among insurgents to simply use a PKM as the preferred light machine gun instead of an RPD or RPK.
- The 2012 remake of Red Dawn has one of the North Korean soldiers defending the local police department-turned-KPA base with a mounted PK.
- Briefly shows up wielded by one of the citizens of Paradise in Postal during the trailer-park shootout.
- A British soldier in Children of Men can briefly be seen wielding an unloaded PKM.
- Shows up in Battlefield 2 and its realism mod Project Reality in both PKM and PKT forms. In the default game the former is an unlock for the Support class, well-liked for high accuracy and power (especially after one patch buffed its accuracy and fire rate to ridiculous levels and required another patch to undo it), while the latter is coaxially mounted alongside the main cannon of the Middle Eastern Coalition's tanks.
- Essentially the BFG of the STALKER games, though its heavy weight prohibits sprinting, the iron sights are unusable, upgrading it costs a fortune, and it uses one of the rarest and most expensive ammo types in the game, even more than the 9x39mm. To make up for these shortcomings, it makes for "Instant Death" Radius when you're firing, which extends to medium range when you go in a low crouch - mutants become minced meat. Strangely enough, when reloading, Scar and Degtyarev never flip the lid open; they simply link the new belt to the side of the weapon and rack the bolt.
- A crazy Mongolian dual wields a PKM alongside an MG 42 in Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle.
- Available in Far Cry 2 as the first hand-held machine gun available for purchase. As above, since the game is all about flipping the guns' models, the PKM is flipped to feed from the left like the M249. Far Cry 3 and 4 also both feature the PKM, now properly feeding from the right and fitted with a Blackheart International SOPMOD kit to facilitate modifications (which it doesn't get in singleplayer, other than an unremovable vertical grip).
- Shows up in the third Uncharted as the "PAK-80".
- Available in Grand Theft Auto V as the "MG". It starts off with a 50-round drum, but the Extended Magazine gives it the correct 100-round belt box.
- The PKP is available in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 to replace the outdated RPD used in the prior two games, as above incorrectly shown to feed its belt from the left side. In the campaign, Captain Price uses one for storming the hotel Makarov and the last of his Inner Circle are hiding out at.
- The PKM is one of the standard machine guns for the
TalibanOpFor in the 2010 Medal of Honor. Warfighter switches it out for the PKP.
- The PKM appears as a Support weapon in Ghost Recon with the Desert Siege expansion, also used by the unlockable specialist Jodit Haile (who is oddly listed as a Rifleman despite using Support kits). The PKP returned for the free-to-play Phantoms, under its Russian military index name "6P41". It also features in Future Soldier, with a slightly increased rate of fire, as the first light machine gun available to Team Bodark and the first weapon the player in Campaign can unlock through a weapon challenge. The PKP once again returns in Wildlands as the standard machine gun of the Santa Blanca cartel, modified with the railed forend of the bullpup conversion.
- The PKM appears in Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots in the hands of rebels in the South America chapter. It is one of the most powerful weapons in the game, but ammo is hard to find for it and it has high recoil when aiming down the sights. The original PK also appears in Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker mislabeled as the PKM, where it can be upgraded with a shorter barrel, increased damage and ammunition capacity. Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain features the PKM as the "LPG-61".
- The PKP with the above-mentioned bullpup conversion appears in Rainbow Six Siege, used by Fuze and the Spetsnaz recruit as a primary weapon. Suicide bombers in Terrorist Hunt mode likewise make some use of it. Until an update, it incorrectly tracked a round in the chamber on a non-empty reload like all the other weapons in the game, despite being open-bolt and belt-fed.
- In Sword Art Online: Alternative Gun Gale Online the support gunners of Russian-themed SHINC Team, Sophie and Roza, utilize the PKM as their main weapons. They notably use them to primarily suppress and distract their enemies so their Boss can sneak around and take the killing shots with her silenced VSS Vintorez.
- The strongest of the machine guns in Ironsight is a PKP with the belt and charging handle on the wrong side.
- Appears in the hands of a Soviet era Black Sea Marine during the events of the Man Of Stone arc from The Punisher's adults only series.
- Appears in Modern Warfare 1 and 2; it's rather infamous, particularly in use with hackers, due to its low recoil, hundred-round belt, and having the easiest sight to use among its class.note Call of Duty: Black Ops II lets you use it in the 1980's missions, where, due to just reusing the MW2 model, it has an anachronistic Picatinny rail above the feed tray.
- Available in 7.62 High Caliber as one of the earliest machine guns available.
- Shows up in the twelfth chapter of Max Payne 3 with an incorrect 75-round magazine. The gold version gives it the correct 100-round capacity.
- Appears in Splinter Cell Chaos Theory in the hands of North Korean Special Forces in the Seoul mission.
- One of the LMGs available to Team Rainbow in Rainbow Six 3: Raven Shield.
- A usable weapon in Vietcong and Vietcong 2.
- A usable weapon in Contract Wars.
- The standard light machine gun of the NVA and Viet Cong in Rising Storm 2: Vietnam. The gun can be fed from either a 100-round cylindrical belt-box or a 200-round rectangular belt-box. Interestingly, the VC are stuck only with the smaller boxes. NVA machine-gunners start with this weapon during a campaign, while the VC get it around the mid-war point.
- Ryuji Maesaka from Darwin's Game uses an RPD as his weapon of choice.
- Appears in Days Gone, where it can be bought at Wizard Island at trust level 1.
- The so-called "Chinese Assault Rifle" from Fallout 3 is a hybrid of the RPD and the AK-47. While most of the weapon takes its inspiration for the AK-47, the handguard is unmistakeably inspired by the RPD.
In 1974, with the introduction of the AK-74 and the switch to the 5.45x39mm round, the RPK was redesigned to chamber the new round as the RPK-74, with further modifications to improve the weapon such as an even longer, heavier, chrome-plated barrel and reinforcing steel inserts in the magazine well. Like the original RPK, it can share 30-round magazines from the AK-74, though it is mainly designed for new 45-round magazines (drum mags, supposedly with a capacity of 100, were also tested but only issued in very limited numbers). It has since been upgraded to use synthetic furniture as the RPK-74M, mirroring the upgraded AK-74M; export variants with the same synthetic furniture also exist in the original 7.62x39mm (the RPKM) and one converted to 5.56mm NATO (the RPK-201). The RPK was also the basis for the Romanian FPK / PSL sniper rifle. The RPK is also the basis of Molot Vepr, a family of civilian export guns marketed as high quality hunting rifles.
Like its predecessor, the AK, the RPK has seen combat all over the globe, thanks to its ease of use and manufacture.
- Note that in some movies, particularly from the 1980s, what appears to be an RPK may sometimes be played by the similar-looking Valmet M78, a Finnish light machine gun developed from the Rk 62, which itself was developed from the AK-47.
- The RPK can be researched and used in Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker, though it is incorrectly classified as an assault rifle.
- The RPK-74 appears in Battlefield 2, available to the Support class for the Middle Eastern Coalition in the base game and Spetsnaz, Rebels, and Insurgents in Special Forces. Battlefield: Bad Company 2: Vietnam features the original RPK, while the RPKM (mislabeled as and given the attributes of the RPK-74M) returns for Battlefield 3 as the starting weapon for the Russian Support class, and is as such the final unlock for their American counterpart. Battlefield 4 features the regular RPK with the China Rising DLC, unlocked with the "Powder Keg" assignment (three LMG Ribbon awards and one kill with the M224 mortar), alongside a machine gun conversion of the AK-12 prototype as one of the last unlocks for the class. Battlefield Hardline also has a peculiar usage, the Robbery DLC introducing the original version with drum mags that only hold 50 rounds and, by default, no stock as a weapon for the Criminal Operator class, then the Betrayal DLC adding another version (misidentified as the -74 again) for the Operator on both sides, identical to the Criminal-only version except for different magazine models (a 40-round magazine that somehow fits an extra ten rounds), a stock attached by default, and a faster rate of fire.
- An RPK-74 appears as a usable weapon in Metro: Last Light. Compared to its smaller counterpart the AK, it is more accurate and powerful and has a larger magazine capacity, but takes much longer to aim, has a slower rate of fire, and takes a bit longer to reload.
- The RPK-74 is a usable weapon in Call of Duty: Black Ops, available early in multiplayer and showing up from the very first level in singleplayer. Strangely, rather than using the regular 7.62mm RPK, which was in use in the 1960s when the campaign takes place, the game uses the 5.45mm RPK-74, which was not introduced until the 1970s, and when used without an optical attachment it's fitted with an even more anachronistic Tech-SIGHTS rear sight.
- The RPK shows up in PAYDAY 2 with the integrated wooden foregrip of a Romanian variant and a 100-round drum magazine. In a departure from the series' norm, it goes by its real name rather than getting the A.K.A.-47 treatment.
- Appears as a usable weapon in the Ghost Recon series, the original game featuring it as the weapon of choice for the Georgian support specialist Guram Osadze. Future Soldier features the RPKM as a uPlay reward, usable by Team Bodark as their equivalent to the same reward's Mk 43 for the Ghosts. Wildlands with the Deluxe edition features a heavily-customized variant of the original RPK, somehow fitting a ridiculous 175 rounds in its drum mags.
- A Romanian model of the RPK appears as a weapon for the Insurgent Machine Gunner in Insurgency. Compared to the Security's M249, it has a smaller capacity due to its magazine-fed nature, and it has a slower rate of fire, but that also means it can be reloaded faster and it has less recoil, making it more suitable to being accurately fired from the shoulder rather than requiring the bipod for anything approaching precision.
- As with many other weapons, it is available in 7.62 High Calibre.
- The RPK-74 is usable in The Division, with both wooden and synthetic furniture.
The Ultimax has five variants: the pre-production Mk.1, the fixed-barrel Mk.2, the Mk.3 which returns the changeable barrel and comes in standard and paratrooper, the Mk.4 with a new fire selector module that competed in the USMC IAR trials (unfortunately, it lost to the M27 IAR, an LMG variant of the HK416) and the Mk.5, which can load from STANAG magazines.
If there is one weakness to the design, it is the problematic feed system. Early models were meant to be used with a proprietary 100-round drum magazine, but unfortunately these were bulky, difficult to load without a special mechanism, and occupied more space than M16 magazines or the Minimi's 200-round belt box, preventing the gunner taking magazines from other squad members equipped with M16s (this was later rectified by drilling two holes in the M16 magazines' left feed lips, averting the problem). From the Mk.4 onwards however, the Ultimax is modified to load from STANAG magazines only, preventing the original drum from being used anymore and making the weapon more like an IAR than a true light machine gun. Finally, the ability to use drum magazines again was brought back with the Mk.5, which can now accept the Beta C-Mag drum magazine in addition to STANAG magazines.
- In the Film Within a Film at the start of Austin Powers in Goldmember, Mini-Me can be seen firing the Mk.3 version of the Ultimax.
- In Reign of Fire, the American militia are curiously seen using Mk.2s in large numbers.
- In the Singaporean-Malaysian film, Ah Boys to Men, the Ultimax Mk.2 are used by SAW gunners of the Singapore Army against OPFOR infantry in the Action Prologue.
- FPSRussia used one of these, effectively demonstrating its almost-lack of recoil by firing it with one hand.
- Appears in Far Cry 3 and returns in Far Cry 4. In both games, it is the Mk.3 variant and is named the U100.
- Aiden Pearce in Watch_Dogs can wield the Mk.3 variant (equipped with a 75-round drum), and it also is the machine gun equipped to armed security cameras. It appears as the U100 here too - Ubisoft must really like that name.
- The Mk.5 variant is Raven's default LMG in MAG, appearing under the name APEX 100.
- Shows up in Ghost Recon Future Soldier, as a Bodark weapon for some reason. It's the Mk.5 variant, but it loads from the original drum magazines and can be fitted with the fixed stock of the Mk.2.
- In Splinter Cell, it appears in Blacklist, but is only available in multiplayer mode.
- The Mk.3 appears in Hitman: Absolution as Blake Dexter's weapon of choice, under the name Ultramax. It can be quickly picked up and collected for use in Contracts mode when he is killed.
- The Mk.5 variant appears in Battlefield 4 as the first LMG unlocked for the Support class in multiplayer mode and a collectible in the third campaign mission. Notably, it is incorrectly depicted being able to keep a round in the chamber when reloaded, rather than its proper open bolt mechanism. Its low magazine capacity makes it ill-suited for actual suppressing fire like the Support kit's later unlocks, but it has one of the highest bullet velocities in the game (even faster than most of the dedicated sniper rifles) and comes by default with a red dot sight and magnifier, making it surprisingly effective at mid- to long-range shooting.
- The Mk.8 version is available in Ironsight. Average damage (tied with the MG 3) and a slow rate of fire are made up for by its magazine-fed nature giving it the fastest reload of its class by a significant margin.
The development of the Type 96, the first weapon, began during the second Japanese incursion into China. The Japanese already had the Type 11 LMG in service by then. While the Type 11 was lightweight, the open-hopper design allowed dust and grime to enter the gun, causing jamming issues which were worsened by the poor dimensional tolerances within the gun as subcontracted wartime production became haphazard, giving it a reputation of unreliability.
In response to this, the Kokura Arsenal of the IJA tested some Czechoslovakian ZB vz.26 LMGs (captured from the Chinese army who used locally-produced copies as their standard LMG), and after borrowing certain design elements of the gun, issued their new design, the Type 96 in 1936. This weapon used the then-standard 6.5x50mmSR Arisaka rifle cartridge also used by the Type 38 Arisaka rifle and the earlier Type 11, which simplified logistics and supply since riflemen could supply ammo for the machine gunner when needed, or vice versa.
It was also during this time that the Japanese noted that their 6.5x50mmSR rounds were less effective at instantly incapacitating frenzied or determined opponents compared to the 7.92x57mm Mauser rounds used by the Chinese. This, in combination with the Type 92's effectiveness with the then-new rimless 7.7x58mm, inspired the Japanese to switch to the 7.7mm round in 1939. Since this cartridge was more powerful than the old 6.5mm a new rifle was needed to handle it; thus, the Type 99 short rifle chambered in the 7.7mm round was created and the Type 99 light machine gun, a redesigned Type 96 chambered for the same ammunition as the Type 99 rifle, was also created to ensure the continuation of logistics advantages regarding ammo from rifles and machine guns.
The Type 96/99 looks extremely similar to the ZB 26 and its derivatives, though it is functionally different. Internally, the Type 96 uses the same gas operation mechanism as the earlier Type 11, which was based on the WWI-era French Hotchkiss M1909 light machine gun. Fed from a top-mounted 30-round magazine, it features a finned quick-change barrel, and a bayonet lug (pictured above) note . While it could only fire on full-auto, firing one shot was possible by pulling the trigger briefly, something made easier by the low (450-500 rounds/min) rate of fire. Unlike most Japanese small arms, the series saw few changes in construction over the course of the war.
The Type 99 can be differentiated from the Type 96 by different muzzle designs, barrels, buttstocks and magazines, and a higher rate of fire (700 rpm). There is, however, one significant difference between the Type 96 and 99, namely the manner in which barrels were installed. Kijiro Nambu, the designer of the two weapons, was unable to address a dimensional tolerance issue between the bolt and machine gun barrel owing to the nature of rushed wartime-production. The Type 96 had ruptured-cartridge-case-jams during full-auto fire if cases became stuck in the chamber, made even worse by the relatively harsh kick of the operating-rod on the bolt carrier during the extraction phase. An oil pump was installed in the Type 96's magazine loader to (theoretically) ensure reliable feeding and extraction via oiling the cartridges, but this just made the problem go From Bad to Worse because the oiled cartridges attracted dirt/dust/sand/whatever into the breech whenever the gunner failed to periodically clean the weapon. Although both weapons were designed with changeable barrels, changing barrels on the Type 99 was no small feat, as spacing washers were required in the process. More technical discussion of the guns can be found here.
The Japanese took advantage of the accuracy of the two weapons; a skilled operator could lay down deadly, accurate bullet storms from concealed positions. The Japanese also produced a 2.5x scope that can be attached to the right side of the gun, allowing it to be used as a kind of automatic sniper rifle.
Both the Type 96 and the Type 99 stopped production after the surrender in 1945, although during the Indonesian National Revolution from 1945-1949 the Indonesians used this weapon extensively, most notably during the Attack on Jogjakarta in 1949.
- Cool Accessory: The bayonet lug, designed for the Japanese Type 30 sword bayonet, made the light machine gun extremely intimidating, though it wasn't very practical.
- The more practical accessory for the Nambu light machine guns was the telescopic sight. The particular use of the scope wasn't for sniping in the modern context of the word, but for acquiring targets and keeping one's group of shots relatively tight in order to conserve ammunition (in the context of bullets spent per victim). That the sight also increased effective target acquisition range was a bonus.
- Since the Type 96, alongside the Type 11 it was intended to replace (and the later Type 99 which was intended to replace the Type 96), were the standard LMGs of the IJA in World War II, expect them to appear in Japanese hands in Pacific theater World War II movies.
- Windtalkers have both weapons appear in Japanese hands, and Nicolas Cage's character also uses a captured one when he covers a squad member using the radio.
- Letters from Iwo Jima, again, has this weapon used by the Japanese. So does Hacksaw Ridge and Flags of Our Fathers.
- Call of Duty: World at War has the Type 99 appear in place of the Bren Gun from previous World War II Call of Duty titles; it's also the first LMG available for the player to use, as well as the only machine gun that can mount a bayonet. Gameplay-wise, it fires slowly but is quite accurate, controllable, and powerful.
- The Battlefield 1942 mod Forgotten Hope adds the two weapons to the game; the Type 99 is also the weapon mounted in bunkers, machine gun nests, and on the Daihatsu landing craft.
- The two weapons appear in Medal of Honor, albeit in different titles; Medal of Honor: Pacific Assault has the earlier Type 96 while Medal of Honor: Rising Sun has the Type 99.
- Appears frequently in the hands of Japanese troops in The Pacific.
- Both the Type 96 and 99 are usable for Japanese Machine Gunners in Rising Storm, where they can be upgraded with 2.5x scopes and bayonets.
- Used by Japanese Army soldiers and Kempeitai in The Great Raid, first to execute American prisoners, and later, in an attempt to defend Camp O'Donnell from an attack by the 6th Ranger Battalion.
The Vickers went on to be used until the 1970s by Britain and the 1990s by other nations, famously fighting through both World Wars, first as a heavy machine gun and becoming a medium machine gun when the Browning M2HB entered British service. This was mostly because it never broke: it could jam if the ammo fed into it was dud, and drills existed to get the duds out and the weapon firing again, but the gun itself was almost indestructible. In one 1916 test, ten guns of the 100th machine gun company fired one belt short of one million rounds in twelve hours, and only two guns encountered problems: all ten were serviceable again following basic maintenance. British soldiers did similar, impromptu "tests" just before the Vickers was finally retired in the 1970s, as a more fun way to dispose of the .303 ammo that no other weapon still in service used. Despite the guns having been used for decades, they held up just as well as in those early tests. And from the early 1930s onwards, the Vickers even had a .50 cal variant for armored vehicles and more commonly naval anti-aircraft duty, firing the unique British-made 12.7x81mm round instead of the 12.7x99mm (.50 BMG) round used by the Browning M2HB.
The Vickers itself was much lighter compared to the Maxim, so soldiers had an easier time packing it up and carrying it. Its weight might have also been a decisive factor in the British and Commonwealth armies using it as a medium machine gun from WW2 into the South African border wars. And during an era where air-cooled machine guns were beginning to shine, the Vickers became terrifyingly destructive if several were massed together to provide massive amounts of suppressive fire, effectively being used like artillery rather than infantry support weapons. During the Italian campaign, British machine-gun battalions were scarily efficient, where up to 64 Vickers guns would drown weak sections of the German defense in a hailstorm of lead, letting attacking infantry isolate the more well-defended sections so the rest of the forces could demolish them later. Funnily enough, the Vickers was occasionally used by Commonwealth troops to heat their brewing water for tea, despite the tea usually tasting of machine oil and burnt cordite.
Like the Browning M1919A4, the Vickers was widely exported and saw service in a huge variety of calibers, such as 6.5x50mmSR Arisaka, 6.5x52mm Carcano, 6.5x53mmR Mannlicher, 7.5x55mm Swiss, 7.62x51mm NATOnote , 7.62x53mm Argentine, 7.62x54mmR, 7x57mm Mauser, 8x50mmR Lebel, .30-06 Springfieldnote .
- Anything set during the latter part of the British Empire, or any World War 1 or 2 setting.
- In The Last Stand, Johnny Knoxville's character Lewis Dinkum has a Vickers machine gun he dubs Vicky. Sheriff Ray Owens borrows it for the defense of the town, where it sees action in the final shootout of the film.
- In The Wild Geese, the titular mercenaries use a Vickers in their final confrontation with the Simba rebels towards the end of the film.
- Some Vickers guns appear in Verdun as unusable background props.
- British HMG Commandoes and their MG Emplacements use the Vickers machine gun in Company of Heroes. One can also be upgraded for a Bren Carrier for more firepower at the cost of the ability to carry troops.
- Classic British World War I comic book Charley's War had one as Smith 70's Weapon of Choice with Young Albert assisting him in loading it. He refuses to let anyone else go near it as he considers it "too technical" for them. When Charley thinks his comrades have been killed thanks to Lieutenant Snell's incompetence, he uses it to take his frustration out on German troops. Smith 70's assistant, Young Albert, finally gets to fire it when Smithy is wounded, much to Albert's delight. Smithy often uses it as an impromptu kettle to boil water for a Spot of Tea.
- The Siege of Jadotville: A Company have a few of them in the titular siege. Sergeant Prendergast uses one mounted on a jeep to finish off the first wave of mercenaries and Commandant Quinlan orders the jeep pushed over so he can use the same gun on a plane.
- The Vickers is used on British vehicles in Battlefield 1.
- In Day of Infamy, a modified version of the Vickers Mk VI machine gun is available in a rare infantry-carried variant with deployable bipod from the Mk VII for the Commonwealth faction's Machine Gunner class; like the American M1919 and German MG 42, it can be fired without being deployed, but you can't use the sights to do so (especially so given the carry handle is in the way of the sights, which the character pushes out of the way in the deploying animation).
- Used by Japanese guards in The Bridge on the River Kwai, often when guarding trains or watching over the British prisoners. Like the Lee-Enfields and Thompsons in the film, the guards could have been issued British weapons so more Japanese equipment could go to the front-line troops.
- A Vickers gun appears in Cryptonomicon, in one of the World War II flashbacks. It is used to shoot up a German platoon, their vehicles, any bits of scenery more Germans may be hiding behind, and mow the lawn in front of a nearby house for good measure. Both the heavy weight and extreme reliability of the gun are talked up.
- A man-portable Vickers appears in Call of Duty: Vanguard as a killstreak, originally called the Frankengun in the Alpha before being renamed to the Death Machine in the Beta. It fires explosive rounds with a 100-round magazine, and has unusable AA sights.