BR55 Battle Rifle
The BR55 Battle Rifle is a United Nations Space Command infantry service rifle. It was first seen in Halo 2, although it has been in service since 2525. It is the older of the BR55 series rifles. It is most notable for its powerful three-round burst fire and accurate 2x scope, making it more efficient at farther ranges than the MA5 Assault Rifle.
"When nothing else gets the job done, the BR55 Battle Rifle will do. As the standard gun for all UNSC forces, the BR55 is the easiest gun to pick up and use. Almost all soldiers have trained with it, making its slight defects less noticeable, while accentuating its high rate of fire and accuracy. With both semi-automatic and burst-fire modes, the BR55 is the backbone of all UNSC armed forces."
NOTE: If GMs/Players want to use this weapon closer to Star Wars RPG D6 rules, they can change the Burst option into Fire Rate 3, though the Fire-Linking rules seem more appropriate (below).
Model: UNSC BR55 Battle Rifle
Type: Bullpup battle rifle
Skill: Firearms: Rifle
Rate of Fire: Semiautomatic(1)/Burst (see below)
Fire Control: 0D
-Weapon: 1,650 cR
-Magazine: 55 cR
Availability: 2, R
Range: 1-100/230/475 (2x zoom, see below)
-Semiautomatic: 5D (1 round)
-Burst: 6D+1 (3 rounds)
-Melee: Str+2 Physical (Blunt)
-VARIANTS: There exist variant models of the battle rifle; one is a civilian model that only fires in semiautomatic single-fire mode that costs 1,450 cR, as well as a fire-select model that has automatic fire instead of burst mode (as seen in the Halo: Landfall video used for commercials of Halo 3), which costs 1,700 cR and has the BR55's standard range and scope, using the rules given for Autofire in the other MA5 series assault rifles.
-HUD: When using a Heads Up Display (HUD) or Command Neural Interface (CNI) to work with the BR55's electronics suite, the user gains a +1 to their skill when using the weapon. This stacks with any other bonuses, such as modifications to the weapon to increase Fire Control, other equipment, etc. These also display various information on the weapon, such as ammo count, targeting reticule, overheating and other general relevant information.
-VS ENERGY SHIELDS: When used against energy shields, such as those used by the Covenant, the Damage of most UNSC firearms is reduced by -1D in Semiautomatic, and automatic fire (below) only gets half the stacking pip bonus from all bullets spent in Ammo Depletion (either "Sustained Fire' or 'Short, Controlled Bursts'). Specifically, Autofire will grant the +1D for the first extra bullet (as the Fire-linking rules from Star Wars RPG Revised Edition), but then every TWO(2) bullets fired grants +1 pips. This can still be damaging at close range, but beyond this, energy shields become a problem. Stronger weapons may be required!
-SMART-LINK SCOPE (2X ZOOM): This weapon has a smart-link scope built into its frame. It requires the use of a Heads Up Display or Command Neural Interface to use it. This scope (which can look like a small camera built into the body, or can be built into the scope) allows the user to see at twice the listed range above, provided they spend an action to use the zoom function. If they want to zoom and fire the weapon, these count as two actions, and the attack will be at -1D. If the GM requires the user to Search for their target before firing, and they are still doing two actions, then the Search skill roll will also be -1D. The scope can also be used by those with a HUD/CNI to look around corners with the weapon while the user stays safely behind the corner.
-BURST: This weapon is designed to fire in semiautomatic or burst mode, an attack using a preset number of rounds. The burst acts similar to Autofire, stacking damage by the Fire-linking rules (Star Wats RPG Revised Edition), adding +1D damage from the first extra bullet, and every bullet after counts as +1 pip. In this case, with a three-round burst, the damage is +1D+1 (6D+1).
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The BR55 Battle Rifle is a gas-operated, magazine-fed, mid-to-long range weapon capable of semi-automatic and burst-firing modes. Prototypes of the BR55 existed as early as 2524, and were later used in 2525 during the fall of Harvest. By 2548 it had superseded the M392 Designated Marksman Rifle in use in all branches of the military with exception of the Army. In Halo 2 the Battle Rifle fires the M634 9.5x40mm X-HP-SAP round from a 36-round magazine, though in Halo 3 the weapon utilizes the 9.5x40mm KURZ. Additionally, the weapon features a scope attachment capable of 2x magnification. It does reasonable damage to enemies, being able to kill most within a few bursts (normally four when enemy is fully shielded), and can easily land headshots on unshielded targets, resulting in a one-hit kill. Its accuracy and range are also reasonably high, being able to hit a target from medium to semi-long ranges. It is highly recommended to always have one on hand on higher difficulty levels.
This titanium alloy weapon is gas-operated with a rotating bolt. Therefore, the charging handle must be racked before the first round can be fired; this will put a round into the barrel. The charging handle used to chamber the round is located on the left side of the weapon and does not move during operation. Once the first round is fired, the gases from that round—and those to follow—impinge upon a gas piston, which pushes back the bolt carrier, rotating the bolt inside and continuing to chamber rounds until the magazine is empty. Once the magazine is empty, the charging handle (even though not illustrated in-game) can either be pulled back and locked or it can be fully cycled after a fresh magazine has been housed. If it is pulled back and locked, then it must be pushed forward once a fresh magazine is housed to chamber a new round. The
magazine release button is located on both sides of the gun with an arrow pointing down towards the housed mag in the stock. The ejection port is located on the right side of the weapon. There is also a fire selector on both sides of the ammo display.
The BR55, having a rifled barrel, is 89.9cm long and is fitted with a scope for increased accuracy. The scope is mounted on the optics rail. The safety is also located above the handle of the weapon.
It is interesting to note the ammunition type used for the battle rifle. It uses a new 9.5 x 40mm experimental round. The 7.62 x 51 mm NATO round is a rather high-powered round used on the MA5 and on modern-day marksman rifles and machine guns. The 7.62 mm already has a history of having too much recoil because of the round's high power, which made it hard to fire in full-auto in assault rifles. Despite the Battle Rifle's shorter case size, the increase in diameter actually increases the amount of powder present. The level of recoil would be enough to drastically decrease accuracy and inhibit the ability to fire controlled bursts for standard Marines, although for Spartans it should not be a problem.
However, the size of the round would have a problem fitting in the 36-round magazine of the BR55. If a Heckler & Koch G3 (which is chambered in 7.62 x 51mm) has a standard magazine capacity of 20 and be the size that it is, it would be hard to see a cartridge much wider than the 7.62mm fit inside of a magazine of the Battle Rifle's size and with a capacity of 36 rounds. The Battle Rifle's magazine would have to be about twice as long as it actually is to hold that many rounds. This is a continuous pattern with UNSC assault rifles; a similar instance occurs with the MA5B. The MA5B has a magazine capacity of 60 rounds, chambered in 7.62 x 51mm, with a magazine size that appears even smaller than the Battle Rifle's magazine.
The BR55 has reasonably high power, a decent rate of fire, and high accuracy with an electronic 2x telescopic sights attachment; it can be used to deliver three-round bursts at medium ranges. In multiplayer, three body shots and one head shot will kill a fully shielded opponent, assuming the player does not have an overshield. This weapon will kill an unshielded enemy in a single head shot. Target the head and if your within range a red dot will appear in your reticule. This requires that only one of the three rounds, from a burst, actually hit and kill an enemy. Therefore, it is possible to kill up to three unshielded opponents in a single burst if they are grouped close enough to each other, though this is an uncommon occurrence. However, right after you shoot, it is possible to only shoot one round rather than three bullets, with a melee attack to disrupt the burst. Against vehicles like the Spectre or Ghost, an experienced player can easily take out the driver, rendering the vehicle immobile, however, this is harder with the Warthog.
At longer ranges, it's necessary to minimize strafing movements when firing to avoid "splintering" the shot grouping too much. Since each "shot" is really a three-round burst, certain movements can break up your shot's grouping, and could greatly reduce accuracy. To avoid this, either swap it in for the Covenant Carbine, or get up to medium range. The Carbine has the same degree of firepower, and it lacks the splitting effect although it is slightly less accurate. This also affects accuracy when firing from a moving vehicle such as a Warthog (especially when firing at a 90-degree angle from the vehicle's heading).
The Battle Rifle is not as effective at long ranges. Each bullet also acts as a tracer which gives away the shooter's position. Also, the range is limited compared to the Sniper Rifle. It is also not effective against Sentinels, and does negligible damage against vehicles. Neither is it an effective weapon at close range, as the low fire rate and average stopping power of the weapon makes any fully-automatic weapon far superior in close-quarters combat.
The BR55 is largely based on both the QBZ-95 Chinese-designed assault rifle, FAMAS French Assault Rifle and the XM-8. Introduced in 1995, the QBZ-95 represented a radical departure from previous Chinese infantry arms. The new rifle used a bullpup configuration and was chambered for the lighter 5.85x42mm round. Both the BR55 and the QBZ-95 also notably lack a fully automatic firing setting, but can similarly mount optional rifle accessories on the carrying handle. It also has some resemblance to the G36 and G36C and looks similar in appearances like the XM8 due to the curved front and mounted scope instead of iron sights. The FAMAS assault rifle is a bullpup configuration like the QBZ-95 and has been in service since 1978 and fires a 5.56 NATO round.
-Size: 8.3lbs (shoulder-fired)
-Magazine Size: 36
-Maximum Ammunition: 144 rounds/4 magazines
-Fire Modes: Semiautomatic; Burst (three rounds)
-Ammunition Type: 9.5x40mm M634 Experimental High-Powered Semi-Armor-Piercing
-Operation: Short-stroke gas-operated rotating-bolt
-Rate of Fire: 2.4 bursts per second
-Range: Medium toLong range (950 meters)
-Eras: Human-Covenant War (introduced in 2525)