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“It's not overpowered, it's an elegant weapon from a more civilized age.”

The Weapon/Anti-Vehicle Model 6 Grindell/Galilean Nonlinear Rifle[1][2] (abbreviated W/AV M6 G/GNR), also known as the Spartan Laser, is the UNSC's ground-based, man-portable, anti-vehicle, directed energy weapon.

It is the only known battery-powered UNSC weapon, and is the most powerful infantry weapon fielded by UNSC forces. It is capable of penetrating multiple targets, including tanks, unlike the Sniper Rifle, which can only penetrate infantry. It is alternatively known as the Galilean, or, in player lexicon, the "Splaser".

Despite the name, the Laser can be used by regular humans, such as UNSC Marines and ODSTs. The name could have been derived because of its weight or sheer destructive power.

Background

The M6 Spartan Laser is a man-portable, shoulder-fired, directed energy weapon used by the UNSC. When the trigger is pulled, a red targeting laser is painted on-target accompanied by an audible whine as the weapon cycles up. The Spartan Laser will then charge for approximately three seconds before discharging the main laser. As the Spartan Laser charges, the charging tone gets noticeably louder and increases in pitch up until the laser is fired. The firing sequence can be aborted without discharging the battery as long as the weapon is not actually fired; for example, if the target moves out of sight or the operator needs to displace. The laser is capable of penetrating several enemies or vehicles, and has a small blast radius, injuring targets within two meters of the point of impact and toppling light vehicles. It has an offline sequence between shots while it (presumably) cools down (approximately 2-4 seconds), and is highly effective at destroying enemy vehicles.[3]

In Halo 3 Multiplayer, if you kill another player with the Spartan Laser, you will receive the Laser Kill Medal. It is likely awarded due to the difficulty of having to charge and aim the weapon. Also, the achievement "Two for One" is unlocked by scoring a double kill with a single laser shot in any ranked free-for-all playlist.

The weapon is not available in the campaign until the level Template:Levelname, in which Master Chief begins the level armed with the Spartan Laser. There is another Spartan Laser lying nearby on the ground, presumably dropped by a Marine, but only if played on Easy or Normal. The M6 is the only weapon able to harm 343 Guilty Spark on the final level of Halo 3, with the exception of the Fuel Rod Gun and Rocket Launcher, through a glitch that Bungie has removed.

Combat

Advantages

Laserdblkill

A player using the Spartan Laser to kill two opponents at once.

The Spartan Laser is the most powerful weapon in Halo 3, combining long range with a lethal, sudden force. The weapon is classified as an anti-infantry and anti-vehicle weapon, making it a weapon that can destroy almost anything in the operator's path. All destructible vehicles are often destroyed in a single blast, except in the case of a near miss, in which case the target will still suffer heavy damage. It can also strike and kill multiple opponents and vehicles if they are lined up correctly. It is more powerful than the rocket launcher, and since the main beam travels instantly, it can be used far more easily and reliably at range.

Disadvantages

As with all powerful weapons, there are a few disadvantages. The Spartan Laser needs to charge for three seconds (four seconds after TU2) before firing, and requires another two to four seconds to cool down after firing. The laser bleeds off 20% (25% with four shots in Halo: Reach[citation needed]) of its battery's charge per shot, giving only five shots at most. Though the scope increases its effective engagement range, it does not have the range to out-perform the Sniper Rifle. However, due to the laser's splash damage, it can out-perform a bad sniper.

The targeting laser may also give away the operator's position. If a player sees the targeting beam, they could possibly dodge the shot, thus wasting valuable battery power, though this is very unlikely, as the targeting beam is very faint and hard to see in the midst of battle. However, it is possible to hear the laser if you are near the operator, and can thus enact a countermeasure to prevent the operator from striking. A point blank shot is not recommended, as you can commit suicide through splash damage, in addition to the aiming skills required to perform such a maneuver.

Finally, the laser is infamous for the difficulty in aiming the weapon, being nearly impossible for inexperienced players to engage quick, erratically-moving targets. This is caused by the charging time, which mandates that the player keep an accurate lock on his or her opponent, lest the laser discharge in vain.

Operation

Targeting

When the weapon is equipped, a shroud over the emitting lens of the laser lifts up to expose it, presumably to protect it from scratches and battle damage when holstered, although the weapon is shown with the shroud up when it is on a person's back. The shroud can be seen releasing from its protective state when the weapon is drawn in first person view. A small hydraulic or pneumatic cylinder on the left side of the shroud actuates the shroud where it is anchored to the chassis of the weapon. When the trigger is pulled, a harmless red laser sight is projected on the target and a unique targeting tone is emitted which slowly becomes louder. The Spartan Laser will then charge for four seconds[4] before firing a red laser beam that usually destroys the target. In the Halo 3 beta, if the reticule was moved while firing, a scattering of beams would be released, spreading over the targeted area. For the few frames while the laser is fired, the right targeting stick is disabled. The beam can be strafed, however, over a larger area if the player is moving while the laser is firing.

The Spartan Laser is equipped with a smart-linked Wyrd III optics suite for increased accuracy and is capable of 3x magnification. Its reticule, whether on 1x or 3x magnifications, features a meter on the right side showing the charging status of the laser. The tick mark rests at the bottom of the circular shaped reticule while the laser is dormant, and gradually travels along the reticule's circumference until it reaches the point of origin, indicating that the laser is currently discharging.

Laser Beam

Spartan laser many beams

The Laser beam is devastating to infantry at any range.

Contrary to popular belief, the Spartan Laser is not a one-hit, one-kill weapon. In gameplay, damage is inflicted on a target by means of multiple, precision strikes from the laser. Instead of what appears to be one intense, uninterrupted beam of energy, the laser is actually multiple, but smaller, charges of energy, sent downrange in rapid succession, giving the appearance of a continuous beam. As the laser is light, there is little chance for escape or evasion before imminent doom. However, it is possible to avoid complete annihilation by traveling at high speeds or quickly finding some cover, thus avoiding the rest of the devastating beam. Once the main laser is discharged downrange, the target receives the intense increase in energy as thermal energy, which then proceeds to impart physical changes upon the target. With each passing millisecond the target is hit by the main laser, the energy levels rise until they become intolerable and result in combustion (in the case of vehicles) or death.

Under normal circumstances, as long as a direct impact is delivered, one laser shot will destroy any target. Wraiths and Scorpions cannot simply be fired upon at any location; each has a vulnerable point that must be hit in order to achieve a catastrophic kill with one shot. The Wraith must be fired upon from the vehicle's rear, right below the mortar at its power core, or directly aimed at the cockpit. The Scorpion must be hit in the driver's canopy to kill him or her instantly, though to destroy the tank you must aim for the cannon. It is powerful enough to make its way through nine Warthogs, but oddly, only four Mongooses parked bumper to bumper.[citation needed] It is also highly effective at destroying Scarab leg joints, although The Covenant is the only mission where this can be done, and it is unlikely the player will keep the Spartan Laser that long into the level without completely draining its battery.

The intense energy of the beam imparts splash damage up to a range of approximately two meters from the impact point. A careless operator that discharges the laser while too close to any obstacle will instantly be killed. The beam can also penetrate multiple obstacles and/or targets, provided they are aligned along a linear trajectory.

It is powered by a BA-53635/PLMD non-replaceable battery, which is recharged with a PP-16979/AM-Sh charger. UNSC logistics, however, are not sufficient for the charger to accompany many W/AV M6 G/GNR units in the field. It would be better to use the weapon when hidden as it takes a long time to charge and the enemy has a better chance of defending themselves, unless the wielder is remains concealed by their enemy.

Trivia

General

  • It remains unclear what exact energy is fired from the M6, while some have suggested that it fires a chemical laser; however, a gas or chemical laser does not produce a powerful energy output, and also require large amounts of highly volatile and toxic chemicals to function, which are expended as the weapon fires. The weapon seems to be only powered by a rechargeable battery pack, hinting that it may be a Solid-State Laser or Free Electron Laser, which does not require a constant source of a chemical gain medium.
  • Luke Smith's comment: "It's not overpowered, it's an elegant weapon from a more civilized age," is a reference to Star Wars' lightsabers, described as such by Obi-Wan Kenobi.
  • The Spartan Laser is currently the most expensive weapon to produce known. It costs 218,000.00 cR, more than the cost of four fully armed Warthogs, 134 MA5B Assault Rifles, or over 7,266 M9 Fragmentation Grenades.
  • It is unclear how the W/AV M6 G/GNR was given the battlefield moniker Spartan Laser. It is possible that the first wielder of the weapon was a SPARTAN-II super-soldier. Another possible reason for the nomenclature is that Spartans are symbols of invincible death machines capable of destroying vast numbers of enemy equipment and personnel.
  • In The Package the Spartan Laser is shown to be able to deflect an Energy Sword and is, in that one instance, dual wielded with a single SMG.

Halo 3

  • The side of the weapon has the Norse symbol for "Gungnir" etched into it, which was the mythical spear wielded by the god Odin in Norse Mythology. Gungnir was described as having the ability to always hit its mark. Part of the mythology is that Odin would hurl his spear over the doomed side of a battle. This also adds to the theory of how the Spartan Laser was named because the Spartan armor is called MJOLNIR, Thor's hammer. It is likely that Project GUNGNIR mentioned in the ONI Memorial in the ONI Alpha Site is, in fact, the name of the development project for the G/GNR.
  • The Spartan Laser seems to trail off forever when fired into the sky, very much like the Sentinel Beam. The beam of both weapons does end, however, usually at the invisible walls of the playing area. The Laser beam on Sandtrap covers over 75% of the width of the area (fired at a 45 degree angle).
  • When you pick up a Spartan Laser that has a battery percentage that does not divide by 20 evenly you will be able to fire a 20% powered laser and another shot after that with the remaining charge. For example, if you have 45% power left in your Spartan Laser, you can fire up to 3 shots, including the 5% amount of power. The damage is still equal to the 20%.
  • As with all battery weapons, a weapon with low power dropped on the ground when its AI operator is killed will be assigned a seemingly random power level between %60 and %70.
  • The weapon itself reads "Galilean" on the main part of the weapon and above the trigger

Halo Wars

Halo: Reach

  • The Spartan Laser returns with very little aesthetic changes with a slightly altered form factor, darker color scheme, and a thermal display attached to the side. The weapon depletes a quarter of the battery's charge per shot, meaning it only has four shots, down from five in Halo 3 and Halo 3: ODST.

Gallery

Sources

  1. http://www.bungie.net/News/content.aspx?type=topnews&link=BAGSpartanLaser
  2. Halo Encyclopedia, page 315
  3. halo3.com
  4. http://www.1up.com/do/previewPage?cId=3155479
  5. Halo Wars, Leader Cards

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