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Top electromagnetic projectile devices in fiction: All

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Oct 21 2010
1 Star Wars computer games Star Wars: Empire at War and its expansion Star Wars: Empire at War: Forces of Corruption: The Imperial forces are able to build a Hypervelocity Gun, or a railgun, on the ground which is able to penetrate capital ships' shields in space combat. It can only be destroyed in land combat. 24661
2 Halo series: Beginning with Halo: The Fall of Reach, coilguns, or MAC (Magnetic Accelerator Cannon) guns as they are known, are considered as the main weapons of the human fleet. This theme continues into Halo 2, with Orbital Defence Platforms protecting Earth, each one essentially built around a single Super MAC gun. Platform Cairo was a location of the opening level of Halo 2, and in Halo 3 ship-borne MACs are seen in action. Halo Wars strategy features MACs as space-to-ground weapons as well, being the one of the "Leader Powers". The ship mounted ones accelerate a 600 ton ferric tungsten or depleted uranium round to 30,000 m/s. The orbital "super" MACs accelerate a 3000 ton round at 50% of light speed. The power of the Warthog-mounted Gauss gun is unknown, though it can kill an infantry target in one hit. 22293
3 In Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, a railgun is used in the final battle. Former Agent Simmons is aware that a nearby destroyer contains one and contact the ship to use it. The railgun is used to destroy Devastator during the battle. 11180
4 StarCraft, a computer game: the Terran Marine (a basic human infantry unit) is armed with a "Gauss Rifle." 6931
5 In the Tom Clancy video game EndWar the United States Joint Strike Forces, and the European Federation forces can equip several of their vehicles with railguns, or Rail Cannons. Most notably their artillery platforms. 5978
6 In Babylon 5, the Centauri used mass drivers to orbitally bombard the Narn home planet. This usage is considered an atrocity in-universe, as orbital bombardment has the power to destroy whole cities at a stroke, making them weapons of mass destruction. 5941
7 Metal Gear Solid: The main weapon on the massive bipedal walking battle tank, Metal Gear REX, is a railgun (although the way it is described it seems more like a coilgun in operation) mounted on the tank's right "arm." It is discovered that the rounds it fires are actually nuclear warheads. 5784
8 Fallout: there are several Gauss weapons in the series. Fallout 2 features the PPK12 Gauss Pistol and the M72 Gauss Rifle, both said to be of German design. Fallout Tactics additionally features the MEC Gauss Minigun while Fallout 3 features another Gauss Rifle with a scope, both of Chinese design. 5681
9 Halo 2: In the beginning level, Cairo Station, the player has to traverse a coilgun, or a Super MAC in the Halo universe, to deactivate a bomb planted on the station. The M12G1 Warthog LAAV has a back-mounted M68 Gauss Cannon, a scaled down version of the MAC technology. The ships in the series are all armed with coilguns as well. 5349
10 Half-Life modification Team Fortress Classic: Railguns are the secondary weapon for the engineer class. Although the projectile moves at a slow rate and leaves a green trail behind it. 4476
11 Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots: Boss enemy Crying Wolf uses a railgun as her main weapon. It becomes available to the player after she is defeated. Also, the previously mentioned railgun (from Metal Gear Solid) becomes a central plot point , after Liquid Ocelot steals it and attaches it to an Arsenal Gear. 4272
12 In Robert A. Heinlein's classic novel The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress, rebelling Lunar colonists convert a kilometers-long mass driver system that delivers raw materials to Earth into a railgun that lobs metal-clad rocks, then commence an orbital bombardment. 3989
13 F.E.A.R.: Both the protagonist and the enemy army that he faces have access to a weapon called the HV Penetrator, which is described as a nail gun that fires high speed 10 mm spikes. It has a high degree of armor penetration, is capable of fully automatic fire, and often pins defeated enemies to the wall behind them. 3638
14 Eve Online (a space-based MMORPG from the Icelandic software house CCP): Railguns are a popular turret weapon fitted to a variety of ships particularly favoured by the Gallente race. The main advantage of railguns in Eve Online is their extreme range of up to 250 km. The following ammo types are available for railguns in Eve: Antimatter, Iridium, Iron, Lead, Plutonium, Thorium, Tungsten, Uranium, Spike and Javelin. 3228
15 Final Fantasy VIII (game): A coilgun is used at Lunar Gate on the Esthar continent to launch pods containing individual persons into space. 3128
16 In Halo Wars, the anti-vehicle weapon for UNSC forces often revolves around railguns, notably a turret modification and the Cobra unit. 2799
17 Oni: You can equip your character with a weapon called the Mercury Bow. The Mercury Bow is an advanced sniper rifle that uses railgun technology to propel a frozen mercury sliver. In addition to the trauma caused by impact, your enemies are purported to suffer from mercury poisoning afterwards. 2595
18 Resident Evil 3: Nemesis: An experimental military railgun nicknamed the "Paracelsus Sword" is used to defeat the final boss.* In the RT4X game Sins of a Solar Empire, a Gauss cannon is used as an orbital defense platform and as an ability for the Kol class capital ship. 2268
19 Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty: One of the boss characters, Fortune, a member of Dead Cell uses a railgun as her weapon. 2173
20 Demolition Man: A film starring Sylvester Stallone. The main villain, Simon Phoenix, uses a weapon called the "Magnetic Accelerator Gun". 1958
21 Black Cat (Anime/Manga series): The protagonist Train Heartnet is capable of shooting a railgun with his revolver after being enhanced by nanobots. 1952
22 Snow Crash (by Neal Stephenson): Reason is an extremely powerful gatling type handheld railgun weapon. 1803
23 Perfect Dark (for Nintendo 64): One of the available weapons, the Farsight, is a railgun with an X-ray scope, allowing the player to shoot and see through walls. Also, in Perfect Dark Zero for Xbox 360), contains a sniper rifle called a Shockwave also has an X-Ray scope that both allows you to see and fire charged particles though walls. 1700
24 Xenosaga: One of KOS-MOS's weapons is a railgun called the 'Dragon's Tooth'. 1694
25 Armored Core games: "Linear Rifles" and "Linear Cannons" are part of an ACs inventory of equippable weapons. They fire high-powered rounds at speeds high enough to visibly distort the air around them. 1474
26 Quake III Arena: A nearly identical weapon. The spiraling blue plume was eliminated and the color of the smoke trail was customizable by the player. The spiraling plume was re-added as an option in a later release, also with customizable color via modifying 'console variables'. 1434
27 Quake 4: The railgun has a more compact redesign and recolored to a dark red and comes equipped with a scope. It still takes uranium slugs as ammo but now shoots a momentary green line with a spiral around it which fades quickly. The weapon later gets a power boost, giving the weapon the strength to penetrate multiple enemies and render weaker enemies into a small cloud of blood in one shot. Multiplayer allows for rough color customization via the game menu with a much finer customization with 'console variable' tweaks. Quake 4's Railgun also features a zoom scope to aid the player in long-range engagements. The Railgun is arguably the most powerful weapon (per shot) in the game - easily taking 100 hit points from an armored opponent. 1412
28 System Shock: Rifle-sized 'Railguns' are available, but the projectiles travel very slowly, no faster than a thrown grenade. 1343
29 Homeworld: Many ships in the game utilize mass driver weaponry. Weapon designs range from smaller rotating mass drivers to larger turret-based ones. There are no ammo limitations. 1270
30 Battlefield 2142 (computer game): The Rorsch Mk-S8 is a stationary anti-vehicle railgun. 1221
31 Total Annihilation: Fido and Krogoth kbots are armed with coilguns. 1151
32 Deus Ex: Invisible War: A weapon called the Mag Rail can fire a powerful energy beam which can kill most human targets with a few shots. An alternative fire is an EMP blast which can be fired through walls and other obstacles, and which does heavy damage to all non-shielded electronic components. 1015
33 Quake II: A railgun (having the appearance of a small vacuum cleaner with red-tinted electronics on top) was included as a weapon in the game. It fires a Depleted Uranium slug with a silver smoke trail and a blue spiraling plume. This incarnation of the weapon most directly was modeled after the Railgun in the movie Eraser. 1015
34 The BattleTech boardgames and its associated games (computer game) employ gauss rifles (sometimes referred to as "gauss cannon") in Star League era, Clan, and post-Grey Death Legion Memory Core battlemechs. 984
35 Quake series:- 952
36 The Tau in the science fantasy game Warhammer 40,000 use railguns extensively. 951
37 Transformers: The Decepticon Megatron is equipped with a railgun in his Generation 2 body. 888
38 Red Faction and Red Faction II: Railguns that fire through walls with a heat-detection scope much like the X-ray scope in the film Eraser. These are single shot and are called the 'Rail Driver'. In these games, this railgun is capable of one-hit kills. 798
39 Steel Battalion: VTs in the game can be equipped with railguns, which, although powerful, are extremely heavy. 770
40 Ace Combat 6: Fires of Liberation: "The Chandelier" is an immense railgun in a fixed position that fired giant warheads containing cruise missiles (similar to MIRV missiles) at the Emmerian capital city, Gracemeria. The Estovakians' superfighter, the CFA-44 Nosferatu is also armed with a pair of aircraft-mountable railguns, officially referred to as 'Electromagnetic Launchers'. 731
41 Enemy Territory: Quake Wars: The Strogg Infiltrator has a railgun similar in design to the Quake II one, though both parts of the trail are colored orange. 699
42 TimeSplitters: Future Perfect: One of the game's weapons, the Mag-Charger, is a railgun that can can shoot through walls with a special thermal scope for aiming. Its projectiles are charged via electro-magnetic pulse (from which the weapon's name comes from) and does more damage to mechanical enemies. 605
43 GoldenEye: Rogue Agent (game): The Mag-Rail is a rail-handgun that fires a depleted uranium spike roughly the size of a tent peg. Though capable of passing through multiple enemies, walls, and objects, they are unable to pass through vehicles and energy shields. They can be dual-wielded and cause roughly the same amount of damage as the Harpoon RL's rockets. When fired, the barrels open as a new spike is loaded and then close, venting what is possibly a coolant gas through the gill-shaped holes behind the barrel. 597
44 Parasite Eve II (videogame): Aya Brea, the main character, can use "Hypervelocity", a railgun as a secret weapon. It also appears as a secret SDI weapon used by the U.S. government to rescue the world from a pandemic on a global scale, but proves fruitless as the main character ends up stopping it herself. 595
45 Old Man's War (by John Scalzi.) The CDF ships are equipped with railguns along with various other weapons. 524
46 Shadow Warrior: The rail gun found in the game shoots pieces of metal at near light speed, propelled from a magnetic field. This weapon will penetrate multiple enemies, making it powerful and very useful in certain situations. 453
47 Descent 3: In this game the railgun is used primarily as a long distance attack weapon that leaves a momentary white trail. 423
48 Heavy Gear: Railguns can be used by the largest of the game's mecha while even bigger railguns are used by tanks and landships. 394
49 Policenauts: Jonathan Ingram and his partner, Ed Brown, stow themselves away in a shuttle launched by a lunar mass driver to escape the Tokugawa plant on the Moon after finding incriminating information. 392
50 In the Legacy of the Aldenata series of books by John Ringo, the alien race known as the Posleen are equipped with a large number of man-portable rail guns in 1 mm and 3 mm versions. These are in contrast to the Grav guns with which some elements of humanity are supplied. 359
51 In the MechAssault Xbox games and the series developed by Microsoft, several Battlemechs are equipped with Gauss rifles. 354
52 Crest of the Stars and Banner of the Stars (by Hiroyuki Morioka): Railguns are called Irgymh<!-- Pronounced as "Irugyu-fu". --> in Abh Empire, and used as a main armament of the combat warship in the Laburec. 337
53 In Neal Asher's Polity stories, railguns are among the weapons used by Earth Central Security. In the short story, "Alien Archaeology," the main character mentions that ships hiding with chameleonware near ECS warships might find themselves the victims of a mishap involving a railgun test fire. 333
54 Count Zero (by William Gibson): The characters speculate that a huge explosion was triggered by a railgun, and they describe the railgun's inherent instability: "You can rig a railgun to blow itself to plasma when it discharges." 328
55 Ace Combat 04: Shattered Skies: "Stonehenge" is a battery of railguns designed to shoot down asteroids, but is also effective against aircraft. 309
56 Black Mask: An action film starring Jet Li. The main villain in the film uses a railgun. 300
57 Battlezone II: Combat Commander: certain Scion craft can be equipped with Gauss Cannons; in addition, both the game and its predecessor contains a weapon named MAG Cannon (Magnetic Acceleration Gun) whose power depends on the amount of ammo used up before firing. 222
58 Escape Velocity Nova (a space role-playing game developed by Ambrosia Software): The Auroran Empire makes heavy use of railguns as ship-mounted weaponry. The railguns are offered in 100 mm, 150 mm, and 200 mm varieties, and are the farthest-shooting projectile weapons in the game. The 100 mm comes in a turretted version, found on the AE Carrier. 206
59 X-COM: Terror from the Deep: the titular organisation has access to three Gauss weapons said to operate on the same principles as alien plasma weapons from the game's predecessor but modified for underwater deployment using conventional power sources. 184
60 In Tekkaman Blade II and Teknoman, they are used to launch the blue earth into a high orbit, where the blue earth's engines can take them either into space or around the planet. 148
61 Brute Force (first-person shooter): When Hawk joins the player's team, one of her standard weapons is the Rail RVR. 146
62 Earth Star Voyager: A Disney movie about a deep space exploration mission that runs into trouble soon after departure from Earth. The crew of Earth Star Voyager uses a railgun to send a tracking device on a course different from their own, to elude a unknown pursuer. Subsequently, the same railgun is used to disable a military spacecraft (the Triton Corsair) in pursuit of Earth Star Voyager. 142
63 StarFist series: Railguns are used to great effect by the alien Skinks in combatting human soldiers. 122
64 In the Starfire series add-on "Alkelda Dawn" the interstellar race known as the Umbra of Vestrii used kinetic weapons. 120
65 The Big U (by Neal Stephenson) A character builds a mass driver as part of an academic project. 118
66 Dark Reign: The Future of War (game): Several Freedom Guard units and buildings use railguns, including Mercenaries, Triple Rail Hover Tanks and Railgun Platforms. 117
67 Outpost 2 (a strategy game by Sierra): Eden's medium weapon is a railgun. 115
68 Redemption Ark by Alastair Reynolds; early in the novel, various factions use railguns that fire foam-phase hydrogen (which explodes on impact) and other munitions; these weapons range from small ship-to-ship devices to thousand kilometre installations. 106
69 In the Infinity tabletop wargame, several of the Tactical Armored Gears are armed with Hyper-Rapid Magnetic Cannon or HMC. This weapon fires 3 mm tungsten darts at extremely high speed and with a fast rate of fire, capable of easily piercing even the toughest armor. 102
70 Tachyon: The Fringe: Special weapon used on Bora fighter-class ships, capable of destroying most unshielded fighters. Due to the game's non-Newtonian physics, railgun shots are faster than lasers. 101
71 Spy Hunter (game): The Interceptor has a railgun that you can earn late in the game. 84
72 Vendetta Online: Railguns are one of the weapons systems that can be equipped." 84
73 Heli Attack 2 and Heli Attack 3 (games): Railguns fire a green beam of light, which can go through walls. In Heli Attack 3 there is also a railgun called the Anytime that shoots explosive projectiles. 76
74 XG3: Extreme G Racing (videogame): A railgun weapon that shoots a round with such velocity that the kinetic heating turns it into a white-hot stream of plasma. 57
75 Mission Critical (a 1995 science fiction adventure game by Legend Entertainment): Railguns are portrayed in considerable detail as part of the CICS. This a suite of relatively short-range weapons employed by early 22nd century United States Navy warships in space. 33
76 Heavy Gear II: The New Earth Government (the antagonists in the game) use a large orbital mass driver to propel asteroids at planets. 6
77 Command & Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars: GDI The Zone trooper's are armed with railguns which depicts a blue beam indicating the projectile has broken the sound barrier and the Predator Tank and Mammoth Tanks can be upgraded from the tech centre to fire 105mm railgun projectile and 150 mm railgun projectile respectively. 5
78 Skulltag (Online port of Doom): The railgun is one of the most powerful weapons, with customizable rail colours. It is able to instantly gib weaker enemies (Zombies, Imps). < 5
79 In "Project: Snowblind", the antagonist organization "The Republic" uses automated railguns to shoot down helicopters of the coalition were the player serves, it is also revealed during the game that The Republic are developing a portable railgun called the "Rail Cannon" that the player later acquires, it can shoot through everything but does not have any kind of sight. < 5
80 Aliens vs. Predator 2: human players have access to a scoped railgun used as a sniper rifle with a very loud report. In addition, the lack of muzzle flash on Predator spearguns and that they allegedly fire spears at relativistic speeds (impossible to conventional projectile weapons) point towards them being railguns as well. < 5
81 The blockbuster film Eraser starring Arnold Schwarzenegger is about a defense contractor employee who has stumbled on a secret conspiracy to sell a deadly new weapon to terrorists. This weapon is a hand-held railgun with an X-ray scope, designed to complement the gun's ability to penetrate through almost any barrier. < 5
82 Command & Conquer: Tiberian series: The units "Ghost Stalker" and Mammoth Walker Mark II are equipped with weapons called rail guns. These railguns sport the same bullet trail (tight spiraling smoke in a straight line between shooter and target) as those in the film Eraser. Such a visual effect, however, is not representative of actual railgun operation. Cutscenes showing the Mammoth MkII in combat show the railgun shots instead as plasma-like energy with no visible bullet trail. In Command & Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars as well as in Command & Conquer 3: Kane's Wrath, GDI Zone Troopers and GDI Commando are armed with portable rail guns, although the Commando's rail guns play a decidedly anti-infantry role. The GDI Predator tanks, Mammoth Mk-III, Guardian Cannons, Battle Base, and Titans can be upgraded with Railguns. < 5
83 Metal Gear Solid: Ghost Babel: Similar to Metal Gear REX above, the larger Metal Gear GANDER possesses two railguns to fire nuclear projectiles (and succeeds in doing so.) It is potentially a more feasible design to REX, owing both to its increased size and the dependency on a devoted power station to fully function. < 5
84 Command & Conquer: Renegade (first-person shooter): When playing as Brotherhood of Nod forces in multiplayer mode, selecting the character, General Raveshaw, will enable you to use a Rail Gun as an extremely lethal weapon shot anywhere on the body. < 5
85 In the anime RahXephon, the Vermillion is equipped with a combination weapon containing a continuous fire railgun and a beam weapon. < 5
86 In the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. series, a computer game: the C-Consciousness developed a functional Gauss gun which is powered by an electric artifact called "Flash". < 5
87 In the computer game Alien Legacy the mass driver is a colony installation that is used to transport ore from one colony to another, regardless of the type of colony (planetside, space station, or the CALYPSO). < 5


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