26.7 centimeters
12 rounds magazine
Short to medium
The M6D Pistol is an 'up-sized' UNSC handgun issued to Navy officers. This model has been upscaled for use by SPARTAN-IIs in MJOLNIR armor. Even though the Spartan issue pistols are larger than the standard-issue variants (~117%) they can still share magazines. The M6D is an automatic, recoil-operated, magazine-fed, large-bore handgun that is controllable even during rapid fire, although at the cost of accuracy. It is most likely striker-fired, due to there being no visible external hammer. It fires M225 SAP-HE (Semi-Armor Piercing, High Explosive) rounds from a 12-round magazine. Operators can achieve an effective rate of fire of 3.5 rounds/sec or 210 rounds/min. The weapon is very accurate out to its maximum effective range. This accuracy allows incredibly precise target engagement at long range. This, combined with its decent damage against Energy Shields, makes it a viable option when faced with shielded opponents, such as Elites. It is, however, even more effective against unshielded infantry targets, being able to kill most targets in one shot to the head or two to three shots to the body.
The M6D is a semi-automatic weapon[note 1] - this principle of weapon operations means that the weapon will cock itself after every shot due to recoil and will continue to do so with every trigger pull until the magazine is empty. The M6D also uses the short recoil principle; it uses the force of the recoil to allow ejection of the spent casing, chamber another cartridge, and re-cock the weapon so that it may be fired again. Before the first round can be fired, a round must be chambered. This is done by inserting a loaded magazine into the grip of the weapon and then by pulling the slide back completely and letting it slingshot forward, which takes a round from the top of the magazine and carries it into the chamber. To reload, the empty magazine must be removed with the magazine release button located on the grip and a fresh magazine inserted. Once the fresh magazine is inserted, the slide is allowed to return to its normal position by the operator. There is no need to re-cock the weapon. Cocking is only necessary when chambering the first round when bringing the weapon out of "safe" mode - safety on, uncocked, unloaded.
The M6D is a very basic pistol compared to most 26th century technology. It is a large handgun, having an overall length of 26.7cm and possesses a rifled barrel, improving accuracy by spinning the bullet. It is issued in a hard chrome finish color and operates like most contemporary pistols. It has rear sights but it does not have a forward sight blade, which is replaced by the smart-link scope. It features a KFA-2 x2 optical, smart-linked scope. This scope links directly to a user's heads-up display or a Marine eye piece. It also has a large grip guard, which helps prevent the user from dropping it and a chrome barrel which helps prevent corrosion.
The M6D uses 12.7x40mm M225 SAPHE (Semi Armor Piercing High Explosive) magnum loads. These rounds have a jacket of copper or cupro-nickel around the projectile while the projectile itself is hollow and filled with an explosive compound and a delayed-detonation impact fuse. When the round impacts a target, the jacket will initially help the projectile maintain its shape, allowing it to travel into the target before detonating almost immediately after impact, causing massive tissue damage and system shock. Semi-armor piercing rounds are more effective against infantry targets as compared to armor piercing rounds due to the massive KE dump and catastrophic system damage caused by internally-fracturing rounds, and have the added bonus of posing less risk to friendlies and noncombatants in the vicinity of the target. The explosive properties of the rounds also render them decently effective against personal shielding systems and are capable of damaging lightly-armored vehicles.
The M6D PDWS is one of the UNSC's most trusted combat pistols. It is very accurate (equal to many battle rifles and designated marksman rifles without the size), allowing for successful engagement at any range below 122.7 meters. It also does a considerable amount of damage against both shielded infantry and flesh, even those wearing Covenant body armor, as it fires 12.7x40mm M225 SAP-HE rounds. The large bullet and cartridge size yields a large amount of kinetic energy, enough to quickly deplete any form of energy shields and crack armor plating. Its semi-armor-piercing ability, combined with the high kinetic energy allows the bullet to penetrate most physical armor, after which its high explosive core detonates, doing impressive damage to organs and flesh. In addition, unlike many pistols which suffer from a small ammunition reserve, the M6D has an extended magazine with 12 rounds, more than enough to put down practically any target the user might face.
Although the M6D has more advantages than it does disadvantages, the weapon does have a few weaknesses. A person using the M6D must be extremely efficient at aiming the M6D, taking into account of how physics work; projectiles have their own physics and are such affected by user movements. Firing on the run is, understandably, a difficult thing to pull off with any form of accuracy. The user must take the enemies movements into account, as well as the small spread that is present when the pistol is fired. In order to pull off a three shot kill against shielded infantry, the user must have good reflexes and know where and how to aim, taking into account all of the previous facts. This alone makes the M6D difficult to use, since new users must learn all this in order to use the M6D effectively. Although the pistol can hit a target at long ranges, it cannot hit, let alone kill an enemy at a distance greater than 122.7 meters. The reload is also surprisingly long, and the melee attack leaves the user exposed as he flipped the pistol back into firing position.
The M6D pistol combines the features of several modern-day pistols: The Desert Eagle is a large, semi-automatic pistol using similarly-sized ammunition. It, however, uses a gas-actuated feed system instead of the short recoil system. The Mark XIX feature two grooves on the barrel that allow the mounting of optics, such as holo sights and scopes. The Browning Hi-Power is a smaller pistol that also uses the short recoil principle and is semi-automatic. It fires much smaller ammunition, however. The pistol fires 12.7x40mm rounds, making them very similar to the real-life 12.7x41mm (.500 S&W Magnum) round used by the Smith&Wesson M500 magnum revolver. The pistol in Marathon, Bungie's previous FPS, had a visible scope. It is possible this is where Bungie's idea of giving a pistol a scope originated.
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- This is the first weapon players receive in the trilogy, on the level The Pillar of Autumn from Captain Jacob Keyes.
- Ironically, though the M6D is the most powerful of the M6 handgun series, in game it is referred to as simply "a pistol," while the M6C, which is considerably less powerful, is called "a magnum." The term magnum is generally applied to powerful handguns, such as the Desert Eagle, implying that the C is more powerful than the D. Anyone who has used the weapon will know that this is untrue. It has been said by many critics that the M6D Pistol was massively overpowered, since it could destroy a vehicle with one or two magazines. It was mentioned during an episode of the Bungie Podcast that there was an internal debate about how powerful the M6D should have been. It was stated that the weapon was supposed to be weaker, but an employee made a last-minute code change that gave the pistol its power.[verification needed]
- One of the comments on the weapon changes in Halo 2 revolved around the fact that in Halo 1, "the assault rifle handled like an SMG and the pistol handled like a rifle." In Halo 2, the altered weapon loadout featured "a rifle that handles like a rifle, a pistol that handles like a pistol, and an SMG that handles like an SMG."
- The M6D has Japanese kanji (the character "Seven") written on it. In Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary, this has been changed to Korean hangul which still stands for "Seven".
- One shot to the exposed orange flesh of a Hunter will result in a kill, no matter what difficulty setting. This is due to the flesh being flagged as "head".[verification needed]
- In the Halo 2 multiplayer map Tombstone, there is a M6D Pistol crate that's behind the right side of the fence that is stretched over the water trench in the middle of the map. You must zoom in to see it properly.
- ScrewAttack noted the M6D as "the most powerful pistol in FPS history" in their Top 10 First Person Shooters of all time.
- During early phases of Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary's development, the upgraded graphics layer for the M6D was that of the Halo: Reach iteration of the M6G, serving as a placeholder until an appropriate graphics skin was created. In the final game, this was changed to the Halo 3 iteration of the M6G.
- The M6D is featured in the Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary multiplayer and, by extension, the Anniversary playlists of Halo: Reach. Due to development constraints it retains the Halo: Reach M6G appearance and sounds, but other characteristics of the weapon replicate the M6D. The M6D is a playlist-related feature and isn't available in the Reach custom games.
- Early in the development of Halo: Combat Evolved, the pistol that would become the M6D was known as the 60 Magnum Mega Class M4a. This is a reference to the .44 Magnum Mega Class, the standard UEG pistol from the Marathon series.
John-117 firing an M6D in a beta build of Halo: Combat Evolved.
List of appearances
- Halo: The Fall of Reach (First appearance)
- Halo: Combat Evolved
- Halo: The Flood
- Halo: First Strike
- Halo 2
- Halo Graphic Novel
- Halo: Helljumper
- Halo: Evolutions - Essential Tales of the Halo Universe
- Halo: Blood Line
- Halo: Fall of Reach
- Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary
- ^ The game's manual states that the weapon is fully-automatic and during gameplay, the weapon will fire in a fully-automatic fashion when the player holds down the fire button, though it can be seen that the player's character model pulls the trigger for each individual shot, suggesting that the weapon is canonically semi-automatic.
- ^ Halo: Combat Evolved manual
- ^ The Art of Halo, page 99
- ^ Bungie.net: Halo 3: ODST - Field Guide
- ^ The Art of Halo, page 103
- ^ BTS: Anniversary Multiplayer
- ^ Bungie ViDoc: O Brave New World