Small Arms
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Basic Information

Weapons, traditionally a firearms, designed to be carried and operated by one person, generally as their primary weapon. This category may include some light anti-tank weapons and light mortars and normally includes general purpose machine guns, but not medium machine guns or heavy machine guns, which are normally carried and operated by several men.

Not to be confused with or opposed to sidearms or long arms - the usual antonyms would be ordnance or heavy weapons.


1. full source reference

Game and Story Use

  • "Small arms" is an important category in military thinking - it's a common stipulation that troops in a given deployment (such as a peacekeeping mission) or abandoning a position on terms are restricted to taking small arms with them. It may also be an import restriction to a controlled area, or a limit to what a merchant stocks or is permitted to stock.
  • Likewise it will probably be a red line as to what the local authorities are prepared to tolerate - for example in your colonial era campaign, the governor of the colony you arrive at will probably not bat an eyelid at your two-bore elephant gun, your state of the art magazine rifle or those new fangled Mauser self loading pistols (unless you've brought enough to arm a revolt or he has a particular interest in firearms), but will be very interested if he sees your porters wheeling a Maxim or a Gardner Gun down the gang plank, let alone an actual cannon.
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