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This is an overview article which contains background information and cross-game comparisons. For game-specific information and stats, see the articles linked on the right.
Gameplay articles
Fallout 2M72 Gauss Rifle
Fallout 3Gauss Rifle
Gauss Rifle (Beta)
Fallout: New VegasGauss Rifle
YCS/186
Fallout TacticsM72 Gauss Rifle
Fallout ExtremeGauss Rifle
Enhanced Gauss Rifle

Gauss Rifles are hand-held weapons utilizing electromagnetic coils to propel metal slugs at extremely high velocities.

While in Fallout 2 the Gauss Rifle uses the Small Guns skill, it uses the Energy Weapons skill in Fallout 3 and Fallout: New Vegas.

Models

M72 Gauss Rifle

Fo2 M72 Gauss Rifle

The M72 rifle is of German design. It uses an electromagnetic field to propel rounds at tremendous speed... and pierce almost any obstacle. Its range, accuracy, and stopping power are almost unparalleled[1].

It uses 2mm EC magazines containing both batteries and ammunition. In 2241, it was often used by Enclave soldiers.

Scoped Gauss Rifle

Gameplay articles: Fallout 3, Fallout: New Vegas

The scoped Gauss rifle is an advanced sniper rifle used during the invasion of Alaska. Unlike the M72 Gauss rifle, which uses 2mm EC magazines containing both batteries and ammunition, this gun requires the user to load in the microfusion cells needed to energizes and magnetize each pre-loaded standard round contained in the magazine attached to the side of the weapon.[2] Each round produces a small "explosion" on impact, dealing minor splash damage.

Enhanced Gauss Rifle

Gametitle-FOXThe following is based on Fallout Extreme and has not been confirmed by canon sources.
Gameplay article: Fallout Extreme

An enhanced version of the M72 model.

Beta Gauss Rifle

Icon cut contentThe following is based on Fallout 3 cut content and has not been confirmed by canon sources.
Gameplay article: Fallout 3

The Beta Gauss Rifle is a beta version of the Scoped Gauss Rifle that uses the model of a laser rifle and features a five round magazine. It only does about 25% of the damage of the final version, but has a 100% knock-down chance. It is only obtainable through console commands.

Behind the scenes

The Gauss Rifle (aka Coilgun) is a device used to propel a ferromagnetic projectile by accelerating them through a process of magnet induction. The Gauss Rifle (and Gauss gun) are named after German mathematician Carl Friedrich Gauss, who formulated mathematical descriptions of the magnetic effect used by magnetic accelerators.

Gallery

References

  1. In-game description of the Gauss rifle in Fallout 2 and Fallout Tactics. [1][2]
  2. Emil Pagliarulo in the Bethesda Game Studios forum [1][2] - "The gun energizes and magnetizes a standard projectile round; those are already pre-loaded into the weapon, and are in that giant clip attached to the side of the weapon. The player loads in the Micro Fusion Cells needed to energize/magnetize each round. We did it this way because we knew we wanted to have an Energy Weapon equivalent of the Sniper Rifle..."
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