The Anti Material Rifle is a high powered rifle designed to attack non-living targets such as vehicles, ordnance and pieces of stationary plant. They also tend to be pretty effective against human targets as well, given their high power and (usually) high calibre.
The ancestor of the type is found in the anti-tank rifle - developed in the later years of WW1 and made mainstream in the interwar years. By the start of WW2 advances in vehicle armour had made them essentially obsolete; although most nations entered the war with at least one type on their inventory they were rapidly found to be all but useless1 against most armoured fighting vehicles and discarded. Not long thereafter recoiless anti-tank weapons became widespread and the idea of an anti-armour rifle was discarded, although some of the rifles produced up to that point - particularly by Lahtil and Solothurn - were of cannon calibre (20mm) and wandered about on the personal weapon/heavy weapons/ordnance dividing line.
Sometime during the Cold War, as complicated and expensive pieces of kit like radars, missile launchers and communications nodes proliferated various militaries started to come up with the idea of developing a weapon that could be used to launch low-intensity attacks on them. The sniper rifle was the base technology chosen to develop these weapons and in due course the modern anti-material rifle was born.
These are generally large, heavy bolt action or semi-automatic rifles of at least .50/12.7mm calibre and, as previously noted, serve quite adequately for anti-personnel use as well as their intended purpose.
Game and Story Use
- This type of weapon is ideal for hunting things like dinosaurs or humans in primitive power armour.
- This is also ideal for those sniper shots that need to be taken over a couple of kilometers.