The M6C Magnum Sidearm is a short-medium range UNSC handgun that was distributed to members of the UNSC Marine Corps, particularly members of vehicular crews. This model has been up-sized to be used by Spartan’s in MJOLNIR armor. Even though the Spartan issue pistols are larger than the standard-issue variants (~117%) they can still share magazines. The M6C is a semi-automatic, recoil-operated, magazine-fed handgun. It has a DAO, or double-action only, trigger and fires the M228 12.7mmx40mm SAP-HP round (Semi-Armor Piercing, High Penetration) from a 12 round magazine.
It has a high rate of fire (6 rounds/sec or 360 rounds/min) but a limited maximum effective range, being able to hit a target accurately at only about 20 meters. The M6C is considered to be the weaker of the currently usable M6-series models in that it has reduced accuracy, a shorter effective range, and lower efficiency rate against shielded, armored, and soft targets.
The M6C uses the short recoil principle, meaning that during firing the bolt face and barrel recoil back a very short distance before unlocking and cycling. Because it is semi-automatic, the gun is self-cocking due to recoil from the previous shot (until the magazine is empty). The recoil force comes from the expanding gases of the rounds fired which force the slide, located on the top of the gun, backward - the slide not only absorbs the force of the gases but also uses the force to eject spent casings and load new rounds into the chamber. Since this weapon is DAO (double-action only, meaning one pull of the trigger will cock and release the weapon's hammer/striker) there is no need to cock an external hammer for the weapon to fire.
All you have to do is pull the trigger after loading a magazine and chambering the first cartridge. There is a small, red rectangular box on the flat back of the slide that protrudes out slightly when the weapon is cocked. Once this is done, the safety, located at the back of the slide on both sides, must be switched off or the weapon will not fire. Once all the rounds have been spent, the slide catch, a rectangular lever located above the trigger, is forced upward and “catches”. To reload, the empty magazine must be removed with the magazine release button which is located on the grip near the shooter's thumb. Once the empty mag is out, a fresh one can be inserted and the slide catch is pressed downward, releasing the slide and chambering a round.
The M6C Magnum, uses 12.7x40mm (.50 caliber) Semi-Armor-Piercing, High-Penetration rounds. These rounds have a jacket of copper or nickel which encloses a more frangible metal projectile that will deform shortly after penetration. When the round hits a hard object such as body armor, the jacket will temporarily help maintain the shape of the projectile so that it has a better chance of penetration. A second impact against bone or solid muscle mass inside the target's body is usually enough to complete the jacket's rupture, at which point the projectile mushrooms and shatters into smaller pieces, causing a large number of wound channels and maximizing damage.
These rounds are typically more effective against infantry as opposed to armor-piercing rounds due to a larger dump of KE, resulting in better stopping power. Ammunition packets for the M6C Magnum are labeled in the same blue color as all other M6 sidearm ammunition packs; however, each ammunition pack has a different shade and text to indicate the type of ammunition inside.
The M6C PDWS is a defensive sidearm allowing for successful engagement at close range. The M6C Magnum's 12.7mm ammunition does a considerable amount of damage to soft targets. This, coupled with its high rate of fire and its ability to kill with a single headshot makes the M6C a capable weapon against unshielded infantry over short distances.
The M6C PDWS, when compared to the strength of other versions of the M6 Magnum series, is considered the weaker of the military issued sidearms. Its inability to engage infantry at medium or long ranges is the weapon's main disadvantage, for this reason the M6C is mostly issued to vehicular crews as the weapons nature serves a more passive defensive role. The weapon’s accuracy when compared to the other M6 models, is about 1/5 as accurate as the M6D PDWS, having a large shot spread at close ranges. This, combined with its minimal damage against current shield systems, makes it a poor weapon of choice when used in offensive situations. The M6C's default ammunition has no secondary effects, limiting its effectiveness against heavily armored infantry.
One possible influence on the design of the weapon is the Walther P99. Another possible influence could be the FP-45 Liberator, a weapon designed in the United States during World War II. The long grip, but short barrel is an obvious feature.
- In campaign, the M6C is best used when dual wielding another weapon; two M6Cs will be very effective at quickly eliminating unshielded Covenant.
- Dual wielding two M6Cs is a good tactic against Drones due to the Drone's low damage resistance, and the relatively light recoil compared to the M7/Caseless Submachine Gun.
- Headshots (which are always a 1-hit kill except against shielded or helmet-wearing enemies) are essential for effective use of the M6C, since torso shots do mediocre damage. A single M6C bullet does about the same amount of damage as a Battle Rifle round, except the M6C is semi-automatic and has a magazine capacity of 12 rounds whereas the Battle Rifle fires in bursts and uses 36 round magazines.
- Dual wielding the M6C with a Plasma Pistol is arguably the best combo in the game.
- If you have no other option available, dual-wield the M6C with another weapon to maximize your chances until you find a weapon that you can use.
- If forced to use a single M6C be sure to get up close to the enemy player, fire to lower his shields and then melee attack for an effective kill.
- Using the Plasma Pistol with the M6C is often one of the easiest ways to assure a kill.
- A suppressed variant is available to UNSC Special Forces.
- The Halo 2 post-game carnage report breakdown tab on Bungie.net shows the weapon as "Magnum M6G Pistol," even though the game manual states it is the M6C model.
- If aimed directly at an enemy's head a red dot will appear in the center of the crosshair. This occurs with any precision weapon from Halo 2 onwards.
- The pistol is a dark grayish color rather than a whitish-silver color like other variants, but some versions have been noted to have a silver color, like John Forge's pistol.
- The M6C has no visible hammer, and it can be inferred that it has a concealed hammer or spring-loaded striker, similar to that of a Glock or Springfield XD handgun.
- The M6C's design looks similar to a Walther P99 pistol. The overall design is very much the same, however the M6C is much smoother and rounded than the Walther P99.
- Inspects the files M6C texture can be seen that the sides have most of the engravings that are present on the M6G.
- The M6C is able to fire twice as fast as a Covenant Carbine if you have a quick trigger finger. While this is very useful, it consumes ammunition at an extremely fast rate. So, do NOT use this as a primary weapon, but what pistols are designed to be: sidearms.
- The M6C is the first weapon in the Halo series that is capable of a headshot that does not include a zoom function.
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