The Bunker Times - July 2012
Community News & Information Vol. 101
Written, edited and published by:Snoid
Regular guest writer:Bean
- Community Statistics -
Online At Once Record
13 July 2006 - 12:48 PM
WEAPONS OF WOLFENSTEIN
PART 9 - The BAR (BROWNING AUTOMATIC RIFLE)
Written by: Bean
This month, by special request, we examine one of the more rare weapons in the Wolfenstein Enemy Territory arsenal. Not all Bunker servers have this weapon, and when they do it's often rusty!
The BAR's origins pre-date both world wars. Imagine hordes of Allied troops walking over open ground, firing large automatic weapons from the hip, in an effort to overwhelm entrenched German positions. This was an attack tactic envisioned by the leading military minds before World War I. The Browning Automatic Rifle, or BAR for short, was designed for this specific purpose. German rapid-fire defensive machine guns soon put an end to such foolish tactics. Yet the BAR stuck around to see service in the next war, where it became the most beloved Allied weapons of World War II.
As the name indicates, the BAR was designed by American James M. Browning. He's considered the most talented and prolific gun designer in history. Many weapons bear his name. He designed the BAR in 1907, in hopes that the US Army would be interested. Its design allowed a single soldier to carry a weapon that could unleash bursts of tremendous firepower with its 0.30 cartridges. Perfect for the tactic described above, where it was hoped troops could prevail through sheer force and might. The original "shock and awe"!
At first, the US government was not interested in the BAR. Further hampering its adoption was the government's initial refusal to become involved in World War I. By 1917, the US finally decided to join the war and asked Browning to create detailed designs of the BAR. He basically had already done so, including an innovative gas-operated mechanism.
Production started almost immediately. By the end of the World War I, 52,000 had been built. While only a few saw service in that war, performance reports were favourable. Most were stockpiled, and between the wars the UK nearly adopted the BAR for its army.
Along came World War II. After the fall of France, the British expeditionary Force lost much of its heavy weaponry after the disaster at Dunkirk. The UK looked to the US and its masses of stockpiled BARs. Since the US intended to also sit out this new war, it immediately sold 25,000 BARs to the UK. Most of these were used by Home Guard units like the one pictured below.
The very next year, the US decided to join the war and wished it had kept those thousands of BARs for itself! No matter: the industrial superpower simply built more. By 1945, it had produced another 188,000, only slightly modified from the original World War I design.
The BAR served as a light machine gun for US troops, but it wasn't really suited for that purpose: Its air-cooled barrel would overheat; Its small magazine did not allow for sustained rates of fire; Its kick was tremendous, forcing the weapon skyward away from the target. In essence, the UK Bren gun and the German MG 34 were far superior weapons in the light machine gun role.
Despite these shortcomings, it was deployed in all theatres where the US fought, and the soldiers loved it. It was dependable, rugged, powerful, plentiful, and its features were well-understood. The BAR survived into the Korean War and is still in demand by weapons collectors today.
This month we feature Bunker member SickOne
Q: I want to begin with some questions that will help other players know you better... so I'll start with... Where do you live and what kind of job do you have?
A: I live in the beautiful(for most parts)city of Hannover in Lower Saxony / Germany. I am working as an Electrician !
Q: Do you like the work you do or are you looking for a better, or different kind of a job?
A: I like my job very much. A great variety, different kind of workplaces, some small, some really big and some cool workmates.
Q: Are you married with kids?
A: No, to be honest, luckily not.
Q: Hmmm Would you like to be married with kids?
A: Well, not at the moment. I’m in a relationship right now, and we both don’t think bout kids. But we’re still young, probably in the future sometime.
Q: What is your "gaming" history and when and how did you learn about Wolfenstein ET?
A: My gaming history started with the Commodore 16 with datasette to load the games from (like a tapedeck , for those who dont know). After that, came the Commodore 64 with great games like Giana Sisters, Bubble Bobble, Summergames, International Karate . . . and much more. I spent a lot of time playing with it, then I stopped playing until the PS 1 came out and I rediscovered gaming. My first online gaming started with the release of Return to Castle Wolfenstein for PC in 2001, and by playing that game I could overhear the rumors about Enemy Territory, which was released shortly (2 years after) for PC. Since then I was hooked on it!
Q: Is ET your favorite game and what other games do you enjoy playing?
A: Et was pretty much always my favourite game for online gaming besides RtCW. Out of those 2 maybe RtCW a bit more than ET. Other games I enjoy very much are the whole Final Fantasy series on the PS 1 (don’t wanna know how much hours I spent in those) and I was always a big fan of Ego shooters, like Medal of Honor, S.T.A.L.K.E.R,or Metro 2033. Shooter games generally I guess. One of my all time favourite games is Max Payne 1.
Q: What is it about ET that you like and how do you compare it to other games?
A: I think its the fast paced action and the variety in game play with the different classes to choose from. It’s what makes ET so different from other Online shooter games. The rest I tried online like cod or Medal of honor, seemed all boring to me after some time. Maybe it was because I wasn’t so good at it like in ET ^^
Q: Do you like traveling and have you traveled far from home? If yes... where have you been?
A: I like traveling generally but haven’t gotten very far to this point. I will change that this year as a vacation is planned and it will be somewhere in southern Europe probably. My longest way traveling was around 850 kilometers. The only foreign countries I’ve visited were the Netherlands and Switzerland.
Q: How do you travel? (plane, train, bus, car, motorcycle, horse etc)
A: Train and car mostly, but this year we will go by plane!
Q: Do live near any other Bunker members and if yes... are you friends, and do things (other than play ET) together?
A: There are some members not so far from me but I have never met them. I was in a relationship with a bunker member some time ago.
Q: If you live near other ET players... who are they?
A: Some personal friends of mine played ET in the past, they all live around my hometown. Noticable by the =ids= tag which I also had in front of my name. For those who still don’t know : ids = idiots (Ha ha)
Q: Some people stop playing ET because of the older graphics. Does that matter to you and are you ready for a graphics upgrade for Wolfy?
A: I don’t care about the graphics, as long as the game play is good.
Q: What is your favorite dinner meal and include dessert? (steak, chicken, fish, spaghetti, stuffed egg plant etc. pie, cake, ice cream etc.)
A: I love eating Kasseler with Sauerkraut and very much all kind of Ice for dessert. Eating in general is a thing I love to do.
Q: Do you like cooking or would you rather go out to a restaurant?
A: To be honest, I’m a lousy cook. I prefer going out for a meal or enjoying a meal made by my Girlfriend ^^
Q: When playing Wolfy ET, do you have a favorite class or soldier or do you "mix it up?"
A: He he, I’m can just imagine some members reading this question, saying : I know the answer I prefer playing Medic or Field ops, annoying some peeps with artillery.
Q: Do you have any favorite maps?
A: Mostly the maps that came from RtCW to ET, and those which fits into my field ops playing style, open maps with bottlenecks to get a lot of kills.
Q: Younger players... and older players tend to spend a lot of time playing ET. Those in the middle get busy with families and careers and don't have as much time for playing. Do you play much anymore and where do you fit in the above description?
A: I’m barely playing at the moment, busy with my job and my Girlfriend, so I prolly fit in the middle age part.
Q: If you don't play much now because you're busy, do you think you'll find more time to play ET (or an upgraded version of it) later in life?
A: I guess I will always find a bit of time for ET every now and then as long as its community is active. It’s just too good of a game to stop playing it totally.
Q: Do you own a car and or a motorcycle? If yes for either or both, describe them.
A: None at all.
Q: If you could own any kind of vehicle, what would it be?
A: There are a lot of beautiful cars, if I would have to choose one . . probably an Audi RS 3 Sportsback.
Q: Besides upgrading ET, are there any other improvements or changes you'd like to see in game play?
A: None, it’s good as it is.
Q: Do you have any advice about keeping the Bunker Community active and happy?
A: Spread to other games, don’t narrow it down to only 1 or 2 games.
Q: If a magic genie gave you one wish... what would it be?
A: Since I’m happy as it is . . . World peace!
Q: Any other closing comments?
A: Sometimes I miss the old times on Bunker, I hope peeps still enjoy the community and will keep it alive some more years. Keep going forward. Peace!
SickOne told me while he doesn't have much time to play right now... he does visit the Bunker forums on a regular basis. He will be watching reactions to this interview.
-Bunker Members in the Spotlight-
This is a new feature for The Bunker Times that will focus on one specific topic relating to our members. Where the “Interview” segment paints a broad picture of the interviewee, this segment will highlight a hobby, an issue, a career, a project, a vacation, or any ONE thing that is affecting or has affected a member’s life.
To give everyone a better idea of what we’re looking for, I decided to feature myself (The Snoid) first.
One of the things I’ve discussed with many of my Bunker friends is my (former) shooting prowess with black powder rifles. This is my attempt to show everyone what I did with some of my spare time between 1982 and 2008.
Other than shooting a .22 rifle and BB and pellet guns, I wasn’t very involved in marksmanship as I was growing up. But I knew my father had a re-worked black powder rifle made some time around 1850 that he shot once in a while. In 1982 I noticed a newspaper article that mentioned an event called a black powder rendezvous which was put on by a local shooting club. I called my dad and asked if he was interested in grabbing his gun and going to the event. He said yes… and that was the beginning of my 26 year adventure with historically accurate shooting events.
Below is a picture of me and some of the club members I spent a lot of time with hosting events, and taking part in shooting competitions at our club and other clubs in the Midwest.
The picture was taken in November 1990 (when I was 38 years old) at the Beloit Rifle Club. I’m standing, second from the right.
My weapon of choice was a standard Thompson Center (TC) 50 cal. Hawken caplock rifle designed for shooting a round lead ball.
For those who are not familiar with single shot black powder guns, the shooting procedure is quite different than with modern weapons. The following link is to a youtube demonstration showing how a caplock is used.
One of the things black powder shooters have to get used to is the slight delay between the time you pull the trigger and when the gun fires. With modern weapons the time between trigger pull and report is instantaneous.
You may have heard the term “flash in the pan.” That is when a flintlock rifle fails to fire. Instead of using a “cap,” the flintlock’s spark is created when a piece of “flint stone” in a specially designed hammer strikes a piece of steel called the frizzen. That spark is supposed to set off a small amount of “priming powder” which is then supposed to ignite the main charge in the breach. If the powder in the “pan” fails to ignite the main charge you have a “flash in the pan.” Below is a link where you can read about the flintlock.
At many of the rendezvous I attended, participants were required to dress in period clothing and everything in our campsites had to appear to be traditional period items. The tent, bedding, pots and pans, everything that was visible to the public had to look authentic.
Below are some of the medals I collected over the years. The ones in the plastic boxes are championship medals from the Wisconsin Muzzle Loading Rifle Association. There was a six year period where I was considered one of the top black powder shooters in the state.
The target below got me a first place in a special prone match I liked to shoot.
The above target is set 60 yards away from the firing line. The idea is to put three bullets as close to the center of the X as possible.
I participated in a lot of these matches toward the end of my competitive career. I have a special 40 cal. Barrel I had made for these matches. Although the barrel looks authentic for the period, it went through a treatment where it was placed in a chamber at an extremely low temperature.
This procedure is supposed to “tune” the metal to help increase accuracy.
The next photos are close up shots of parts of three of the rifles in my collection. The first one is the TC Hawken I started shooting with in 1982.
The second is my dad’s original Pennsylvania style rifle we used during my first shooting competition.
The last one is an 1873 Springfield Trapdoor 45. cal rifle.
The above Springfield is a single shot, breach loading rifle that shoots black powder cartridges. It is the weapon Gen. George A. Custer’s men were carrying at the battle of Little Big Horn and is now believed to have been a factor in his defeat. The native Americans not only outnumbered Custer’s troops, but also were using repeating rifles like the Winchester.
The final picture is the powder horn I made to be part of the accoutrements I carried with me while attending shooting events. I took a cow horn and carved the pouring tip, made a wooden plug for the open end, and then applied the scrimshaw art to finish it off.
I enjoyed my competitive years with real firearms but failing eyesight and other factors played a role in my decision to move on to other things.
If any Bunker members have a special feature about themselves they would like to feature in a future TBT, please message me through the Bunker website with your proposal.
Edited by Snoid, 05 July 2012 - 02:35 PM.