Friday, 14 March 2014

The Humble Lasgun

I have been thinking today about the Lasgun. Often it is considered near useless. Frequently refereed to as a flashlight. There are probably more terms but you get the picture. So I just wanted to do a little post on the humble Lasgun and bring out the points that make this gun legendary and hopefully properly recognized. So why is the Lasgun so good? Lets see...

Ever wondered why the AK-47 was and is a very popular weapon? Never before has a single gun been so widely used and adopted and never before has a gun had so many variants all in use at the same time. Why? Because its cheap, powerful, effective, easy to use, easy to maintain and versatile. Sound familiar? Well it sounds just like our friend the Lasgun. But there is more! So lets break it down a bit. 


Reliability: The Lasgun is renown for its reliability. No matter what happens to the gun itself you can generally rely on it to fire when you pull that trigger. This means that the gun itself doesnt need to be taken care of nearly as much. This isnt new to guns of our time, there are many guns that have been used in the last hundred years with this exact quality. What this means is Krill Farmer Joe can pick one of these up and use it as long as he lives. Same for Old Man Jenkins. All they need is a quick 20 minutes to be told the bare basics and off they go with their guns ready to fire. 

This is the biggest positive to the Lasgun. This means when the batch of 50,000 soldiers are drafted up for immediate service they will know everything they need to about their gun. You can point and shoot it. 

This does not mean training and practice is no longer applicable. It just means that at the very least your soldiers will reliably shoot as long as they arent wounded or dead. Later on as soldiers survive and become well adapted they will have the skills to put this amazing gun to use later on. 

Ammo and Logistics: Soldiers throughout history have always had an issue of Logistics. When will they get more ammo? Food? Water? and so on. Well imagine how much easier it would be when ammo is no longer a huge problem for the sorry people who manage this huge task.

The lasgun features ammo that can be recharged using any source of energy, namely light or heat. It doesnt matter if the Lasgun uses a magazine, a clip or bolt action mechanism as long as you keep the battery it can be re-used. Throughout history this has been a huge factor in many nations ability to fight. Imperial Japan for example had Light machine guns and rifles that all used the same ammo. This meant that there was one less ammunition type to build, transport and distribute. However later in the war it changed its system and had many rounds for many guns which all served the same function. This lead to logistical nightmares and certainly suffered as a result. 

So next time you give your Sergeant a bolt gun instead of a Lasgun think of the poor man who has to deal with the logistics. 

In my opinion all guard weapons should be battery powered. Simply to allow all the guns in a force to use the same ammo pack. Obviously some exceptions are needed but oh well, can rely on the Imperium to be practical all the time!

Versatility: Due to the design of the lasgun we see so many variants and styles that it quickly becomes apparent how versatile the design is. You have varients that all use different stocks, if any. Different magazine sizes, different fire mode options, different power options and the list goes on. 

The only thing scarier than the Nids is the wall of the most brilliant gun in the universe staring back at them 

This means the lasgun can fill many roles from sniping, to suppression fire to rank and file style shooting the list goes on. The down side is no one variant can do it all. The solution to this is each regiment has its specialty. An drop regiment will want condensed light guns over long rifles, a grenadier unit will want full auto and light guns whereas a long line of mordians will want stocky rifles. Whatever the need there is a variant to provide it. 

I cant stress the importance of multiple power settings and different fire modes. This coupled with the next point makes them all the more deadly. 

No bullet travel, kickback or bullet drop: Imagine if you no longer had to lead your targets or worry about bullet drop? Well the Lasgun does just that. Thankfully small short beams of light has that effect! Add this to the nearly no kickback and you have the most user friendly weapon known to man. 

An example of this would be the newer fully automatic shotgun that is around. This is a gun that a young child could fire and not worry about kick back. It really adds to the scare factor when you know a weapon can be used by anyone a degree of effect without training. 

Easy to manufacture: These guns, like the AK are easy to make. There isnt much to them. Each world in charge of making these probably churns out more than it does people. This adds to reducing the weapon complexity meaning there is less chance of jamming or user negligence. 

Imagine how effective your army would be if everyone had one of these with 4 ammo sets and as long as they werent lost or woefully damaged they where set for the rest of their military life? Especially if your army was Imperium sized. 

Some things to improve on: 

Its got 2 draw backs from what I can see. 

First off is the fact that each gun has a purpose. Its hard to find a gun thats suited ideally to all roles. Dont get me wrong they can still be used in most situations but its always better to have the best gun for the job. Luckily there are plenty of variants the only problem is making sure you have the right ones.

Then there is the target audience. A lasgun in the 40K world sadly has to try kill a huge amount of plot armour. Plot armour is not easy to fight. Couple that with an array of titans, monsters and tanks the lasgun at times can be outmatched. But hey, thats what the mighty plasma gun is for. But like all guns, there is no one gun does it all variant. 

It may or may not have a weakness to moisture or fog and so on though. But we dont really know enough about the magic behind 40K science to really comment on that one. 

In conclusion

It cant do everything but it gets pretty darn close. 

So this gun is like a rifleman's dream gun on steroids! Heck even the magazines can be turned into a deadly weapon! You can use it in melee and not worry about the gun (if anyone has worried about their gun after a melee ever) and there is a rifle for you for any situation. 

Without a gun like a lasgun, the imperium would be long since dead. So remember to give this gun its due respect. The Imperium owes its life to it along with every soldier who survives the fight. So as an Imperial Commander know that for every problem, there is a lasgun that holds the solution. Well almost any problem. 

Remember if our guardsmen used their lasguns to the full potential all our battles would be too easy. So we will fight with out guns on the lowest setting, and give other nations a chance. After all nobody likes one sided games :P

Anyone else got anything to add? I was just reading some internet sites giving the lasgun a poor rating in terms of ability. 


  1. This is a brilliant post.
    Hurrar for the Lasgun!

    1. Cheers dude haha. The Lasgun needs some spotlight. I think its a nice change from the Boltgun.

  2. I love the idea of the lasgun. And in game it is more than capable. Though to bring it back to the fluff, I would love if you could use variable setting/overcharge it. Would be so IG to have the gun be more powerful but have gets hot. Kill the enemy! Who cares if a few of you have your rifle blow up in your face

    1. Agreed. Give people the choice of safe volume of fire or powerful but unstable shots. That would be so cool. In game it definitely works but its the kinda works that gives off the sucky feel to many. My opponents do not fear the lasgun thats for sure!

      And the gets hot would be great as during the period my army was themed on sometimes rifles would backfire and injure the gunner. Especially if they where dirty. Would be a cool qwirk for theme.