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Weapons Database

Shotguns

By Hugo Pecos

Disclaimer: Firearms are dangerous weapons, not toys. If you are inexperienced with firearms, always seek professional instruction and make yourself aware of state and federal firearms laws before using.

Overview: A shotgun is a short to mid-range weapon that fires a shell instead of a bullet. The pellet cloud slows and spreads rapidly after being fired, so the weapon's effectiveness diminishes rapidly with distance from the target.

When combating the undead, a number of shotgun variables must be considered. First is the constriction, or choke at the end of the shotgun barrel. This choking determines whether the pattern or spread of the shot is wide or tight. Another consideration is the gauge, or width of the barrel, with smaller gauge shotguns packing more punch than larger gauges. The action, or method for loading and disposing of cartridges, is another important variable to consider. In addition, shotguns can fire a variety of shot sizes, from birdshot to slugs.

Vampires: Even unloaded, the shotgun is a superb weapon against vampires. As I've said before, vampires are pragmatic hunters, and the sight of someone brandishing a shotgun is very likely to make them pull back.

In the unlikely event that a lone vampire or pack attacks, a 16 or 20-gauge pump-action shotgun with moderate choke is ideal. Aim for the head, but make sure you hit something.

Zombies: Shotguns are somewhat less effective against zombies because of the zombie's primitive mental capacity and enormous pain tolerance. As with any zombie weapon, you should use the shotgun only to buy enough time for escape.

Be sure to aim for the head and use the 12-gauge pump-action for more power. A tighter choke will improve your ability to score headshots from further away. Against both vampires and zombies, you're better off with more powder and more shot, so stick with Maximum or Magnum loads.

Overall Effectiveness:

Vampires:

Zombies:

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