Continuing our series of the biggest and baddest weapons found in video games, this instalment covers everything from lethal mining equipment and experimental real-world weapons to bizarre ones that can shrink or atomise all those who cross your path. This concluding part compiles weapons that have been sought after not only in games spanning the last two decades, but by Hollywood as well. Read on to know how these guns can go from dismembering limbs to firing Depleted Uranium slugs at the speed of light.
Line Gun (Dead Space)
In a world populated by claws, talons, fangs and seemingly insurmountable odds against the otherwise vulnerable human species, the only weapon that mattered at the end was ingenuity. What humans lacked in the evolutionary arms race, we made up with the ability to fashion deadly weapons using whatever our forefathers could lay their opposable thumbs upon. Dead Space's Isaac Clarke is the very embodiment of this ingenuity. An engineer by profession, Isaac survives the Necromorph infestation by co-opting mining and terraforming tools as deadly weapons. From plasma-powered cutters to pneumatic spike drivers, Dead Space features an unlikely arsenal that can slice, dice and burn through Necromorphs with consummate ease.
Surprisingly, this isn't even supposed to be a weapon
However, the Line Gun is the most standout weapon from the franchise. It is essentially a Plasma Cutter on steroids, thanks to its insanely high power and a reassuringly wide cutting beam. Although originally designed to carve through rock formations, the Line Gun can cut a swath through hordes of Necromorphs. Tedious, careful dismemberment is a thing of the past with this puppy, as a single shot will take the legs off nearly everything in your view. This is a godsend for those who can't hold their shit together enough to aim at individual limbs when enough of those abominations gang up. It's a pity then that the ammo for this weapon was as abundant as Activision's commitment to innovation.
BFG 9000 (Doom, Doom 3)
No badass video game weapons list can be complete without the biggest and most impressive gun of them all—the BFG 9000. Short for Big F**king Gun, this is the last word when it comes to crowd control. Just one shot from this gun will clear a room full of zombies and demons without leaving any loose ends. It performs its mass murdering magic by conjuring a giant ball of plasma that not only atomises anything that takes a direct hit, but the resulting radiation also takes out enemies in the vicinity.
BFG 9000: the ultimate room clearing equipment
Despite unleashing such crazy amounts of area effect carnage, the player is unaffected by its splash damage. This means, you can fire this off in confined spaces with impunity and practically ensure that you're the only one who walks out alive. Even though there are weapons as powerful as the BFG, none create as much drama as this hand cannon. Depress the trigger finger and the whole shebang trembles as the big ball of plasma at the muzzle grows threateningly large before taking down every single living being in sight. It is this sort of pantomime and an uncompromising effectiveness that exalts the BFG 9000 in the hall of fame.
Railgun (Quake 2 onwards)
Here's a fun fact: railguns actually do exist in real life. I kid you not; it's indeed an experimental technology harnessing electromagnetism to hurl a heavy slug at incredible speeds. The Americans have already test-fired a prototype, while more effort is expended world-over to weaponise this technology. Needless to say, Hollywood (Remember the movie Eraser?) and video games didn't hesitate to embrace this exotic weapons system. The best implementation of this weapon can be found in the Quake series, where it debuted in Quake 2. This handheld death dealer fires extremely dense Depleted Uranium slugs at the speed of light, thus making it an effective sniper weapon.
However, unlike modern cover shooters, which nerf them with reduced damage and annoying crosshair sway, the railgun hits true right where you aim it without having to trifle with any scopes or sights. This weapon harks back to the days when men were men and they didn't need cover of the compulsive desire to aim through the sights. Anyone who has spent time jumping around Quake 3's maps playing fish-in-a-barrel will know exactly what I'm on about.
Jackhammer Shotgun (Max Payne, Project IGI)
This is not your mother's shotgun. Unlike the railgun, the Jackhammer is a real weapon developed by Pancor Corporation, which was promptly lapped up by films and video games owing to its futuristic appearance. Its appeal isn't solely restricted to its drop-dead gorgeous looks, but it can be attributed to a unique party trick. This bad boy is a fully automatic shotgun that can fire 12 gauge rounds at 240 rounds a minute. A shotgun round, by itself, is pretty devastating. However, when you combine that with an ability to spray an area with multiple rapid shots, you have a veritable lead blanket that can clear a room with consummate ease.
A shotgun for those with ADHD
While it may be similar to the US Army's AA-12 automatic shotgun, the Jackhammer's 10-round drum magazine could be used as an antipersonnel mine capable of firing all shells into anyone unfortunate enough to step on it. In reality, it turned out to be too good and, more importantly, too expensive to put into production. It therefore exists as a failed weapons system restricted to a few working prototypes, much like Heckler & Koch's G11 rifle.
Shrink Ray (Duke Nukem)
There are weapons that pack in a lot of boom and there are ones that look cool. The Shrink Ray doesn't belong to any of those categories. What the Shrink Ray does, however, is deliver a great deal of fun. If you haven't clued in on the name yet, it lets you shrink enemies to a convenient mouse-sized avatar. Like they say, size does matter, and this gun lets you dispatch otherwise fat pig cops by simply stepping on them.
Shrink and quish!
Be quick about it though, as they only stay shrunk for a little over 10 seconds. On the bright side, even larger enemies can be cut down to size. All you need is a few extra rounds and you're ready to crush uglies that would've otherwise consumed a lot of conventional ammo. The Shrink Ray is not only creative, but it also gives you that reassuring squish every time you flatten a foe.