Armchair commando time. STALKER should be an interesting scenario.
The basic premise (taking liberties from the actual game story), is that instead of gradually shutting down the Chernobyl reactors, a decision was made to continue their operation for (ostensibly) economic reasons.
August, 2012: An unknown incident takes place at the existing exclusion zone in Chernobyl, Ukraine, encompassing the entire 30km diamater region, seen by overflying satellites as an incredibly bright light. Researchers are sent in within days. Soon afterwards, the military is deployed to completely seal off the zone. There is no official word on the researchers, but it is quickly leaked through friends and relatives that they did not return.
May, 2014: Although not understood at the time, it is now recognized that during this month, the zone, and the unique effects within suddenly expanded to cover an additional 5 kilometer radius. Another large scale evacuation was held of the area, amidst reports of unexplainable atmospheric, gravitational, and energetic phenomenon. Also, the first zone 'artifacts' are discovered. Normal objects displaying strange properties linked to the anomalies in the zone. To those attempting to research the effects of the zone, these artifacts are considered priceless.
2015: With the discovery of artifacts, more and more people slip past military patrols into the zone in order to collect them for profit. Some of these so-called 'Stalkers' have even formed factions, or clans with bases of operation within the zone itself. Also, with the largely deserted nature of the area, the zone has slowly become seen as a form of safe haven for criminals who believe they can adapt to the lifestyle. In response, the military has begun sending its own 'stalker patrols' into the zone itself both to enforce the exclusion zone borders by engaging Stalkers and others that have made their new home (or living) there, as well as attempting to satisfy scientists' demands for artifacts.
This has also brought to light the fact that the zone is populated with a large variety of strangely mutated creatures, most of them hostile, and many very dangerous to humans. The anomalies themselves can be deadly as well, ranging from gravitational anomalies that can throw a person hundreds of feet into the air only to let them drop back down, or crush a person flat to the ground outright, to atmospheric anomalies that render the very air in the area acidic.
So, we're a group of Stalkers who are about to enter the zone. Now, we're not with the military, who are set on enforcing the exclusion zone, so we're limited to light vehicles only to sneak in, or we risk getting a few Ukrainian Hind gunships up the ass.
So, general equipment, weapons, light vehicles (EMP is a serious consideration given the nature of some of these anomalies, so knowing jack shit about cars in general, I'm leaving this to others), the usual armchair commando stuff. And my knowledge on NBC protection is limited to 'gas masks look cool', so I'm just going to go with whatever Uzi4U picks for himself, since I'd guess he's the one most qualified for that selection.
I'd use an HK417 with a 20" barrel and a custom dual optic with a 3-12x illuminated reticle scope below a reflex sight that can run both on battery or ambient light. The optic would have rails on the sides for an optional laser rangefinder on one side, and a ballistic computer on the other to interface with the scope. A bit complex, but the only way to ensure the scope still works as a basic rifle scope if something fucks up the high-tech stuff. HK AG-C grenade launcher under the barrel, and... I can't remember what these are called, but it's a tactical light with a knife blade built in. Rotate a collar to unlock it, slide it forward and rotate it back to lock in place. Combination tactical light and bayonet. Why? Why the fuck not!
HK45 (black frame) with an Insight Technologies LAM and a Knights Armament Suppressor.
Dark Ops Interceptor E&E Knife.
Night Owl iGen night vision monocular. I'm about as surprised to see this as my choice as all of you are. Night Owl?! But I'm dead serious. This thing is the most advanced digital night vision device in existence. Even Elcan's digital NV is crap next to the iGen I tried out at the SHOT show (behind closed doors. My father was heavily involved in the design of this device).
If there was room on the vehicles, I'd also have a 7.62x39mm AK with a side-folding 6-position M4-styled stock, with accessory rails on the forend and upper receiver to fit the same accessories I have for the HK417. Also I'd have a Czech Vz.83 Skorpion in 9x18mm Makarov, with the underbarrel accessory rail from a SA 361 (9x19mm Skorpion), to mount another Insight Technology LAM. There'd be a suppressor for the Skorpion as well, of course.
Once we set up a little base of operations somewhere in Chernobyl I get more options. More storage space for weapons and accessories. Definitely a C-More XM26 LSS, and an HK UMP45. Possibly one of those Chey-Tac Intervention .408s too.
Oh, and in addition...
If it wasn't a given already, I'd also get a 16" and 12" barrel and accompanying furniture for the HK 417 once we get a base set up.
Don't worry too much about ammo types. With all the stuff in the zone, there are people who make a living smuggling weapons, equipment, ammo, accessories, etc. into the zone to the stalkers that reside there.
First, you couldn't pay me enough to go into such a zone. There are a lot of things I'll deal with... Zombies... Dinosaurs... Space Aliens... Graboids... Giant man eating flamingos... But start breaking the laws of physics and that's when I say "Have fun, I'm staying home."
As for gear... This is one of those Space Alien situations, only worse. You'll have no clue what to bring when you start off.
Anyway, I'm busy today, so I'll toss out some ideas later this week.
Nice, but I haven't played it yet, and before putting myself on this I'd rather give it a little ride.
Besides, I have been a bit tad busy in the past two days, spent in Rome with my Editor-In-Chief; they have had a small emergency in the editorial office and needed my direct help to fix it up.
Dudes, that guy has all kind of toys at house. He also has a MagPul P-Mag, "SHOT Show bring-back" (yes, the one of the MASADA, gentle gift from MagPul). I have handled it and I can tell you that it's no "special thing". Simple high-density polymer, like a Glock frame, even the bullet elevator is in plastic. Worse, it's all THERMOPLASTIC, like the Thermolds (or TherMELTS, it depends). He has already squeezed a few shots at the range with his AR-15s using that, and he has had no sorts of troubles, BY NOW, but he could not report nothing better in comparaison with STANAG magazines, except the fact that it is much lighter than a metal-made STANAG and will cost a fraction of a standard AR-15/M-16 magazine retail price.
If you are wondering: YES, the P-MAG he has is a 30-rounder, and YES, here in Italy magazines of such high capacity "WOULD BE" forbidden, unless you have a collector's license (which he HAS, though) and however can't be used. But he is the Editor-In-Chief of a gun magazine, he did it for testing because it's his job to write an article about that. Period.
I'll go with Uzi on the "can't pay me enough" line. I'd have to be pretty sure the world was in utter peril AND there was a chance I could do something about it by going there. Pretty unlikely combo outside Hollywood.
Gravitational anomalies? Getting thrown way up in the air is one thing, you could lug a parachute. But what if gravity went UP in a spot? There's no protection from being crushed by the weight of your own hair.
The creatures... facing off against unknown fauna... and perhaps flora... is impossible to equip for. You need everything, but you can't carry everything. Basic predatory rules might apply, but might not. I could give you a "worst case" predactor, but there's no good protection from it.
All these put together are not an implausible combo, but all put together could easily create a species that could take over the planet. Add in flexible thermal qualities... for example, an exothermic hibernatory/ambush state that can flip over to endothermic to attack... that could be possible, and would make them very hard to spot before it's too late.
That's just one possibility, but potentially a dominant one. I doubt there's a gun out there that can fire enough of the right thing to stop enough of them.
I'm tempted to go with my default "X-Files situation" solution:
Nuke it, many, many times, with very, very large nuclear bombs. Keep nuking it until there is nothing left but a massive crater that can be seen from space.
Damn the fallout. We're talking about some really weird crap that defies all scientific understanding and has the possible ability to destroy the human race.
Fallout we can doubtlessly survive as a species, things like this, not so assured.
However, in this special case, with this whole thing being caused by some kind of nuclear accident, nuking it might only make things worse.
Thus I don't really have a good solution.
Situations like this are why we need a colony off planet... Sometimes there just aren't enough nukes to keep your species from getting wiped off this rock.
(overserious armchair geek/general/commado out)
I seriously doubt it is made of thermoplastic. If I'm not mistaken at least some of the P-Mags we see now are not actually made out of the end-product polymer, but rather a prototyping material. I could be mistaken, but that is my understanding.
Even if it is, I don't care what it is made of as long as it holds up to extreme use.
And there are quite a few advantages to the P-Mag that you are overlooking. The constantly curving cartridge flow will make feeding much more reliable than USGI. The versions with the transparent window allow the user to easily check how full or empty the magazine is. The magazine is much more airtight than USGI mags, which helps keep dirt and sand out (a huge issue in the middle east). It also comes with a cover for the feed lips that also serves to keep dirt and sand out (again).
Lastly, there is one last huge advantage: They are easy, cheap and simple to make in massive numbers. USGI Aluminum magazines take a lot of specialty and hands on attention to make (rolling/stamping aluminum is tricky and finicky). Polymer magazines like the P-Mag can be produced on a robotic production line that requires almost no human attention... They can be made in, quite seriously, FREAKING HUGE quantities.
Anyone need some hints as to why the DoD is interested in cheap and reliable magazines that can be made in massive numbers and work well in desert environments?
I'm hoping the PMags work out. I want to see it followed by 25 rounders for 6.5 Grendel and 6.8, and a 15 rounder for .50 Beowulf. There is a crapload of guns that take STANAG mags, making a perfected one makes a lot more than just AR15's better. After that I'd like to see an AR10/SR25/M14 compatible one.
And I doubt the polymer will melt, that was an issue with a handful of second rate mags.
And the mass production friendliness is great. A mass produced quality magazine? Heck yeah! Even for civilians... cheap is good, more ready mags sitting around. This is about at the price spot I got used to paying for AK mags, so going over to using 5.56mm with these wouldn't hit me in the long run like it would have before. Also, if anyone does another dumbass hi cap ban, mass production means more get grandfathered... GOOD ones this time. I saw some real POS mags kicking around during...
Well, to say, the sample he has and that I have examinated has not those "inspection windows" on the two sides as you see it on the Masada brochure. Those two windows are covered, with three small holes instead to check if you can see the colour of the bullet through and make a mind of how much ammo you're left.
The P-Mag is 100% compatible with -ANY- STANAG-fed rifle/carbine, and yes, reliability upon standard STANAG-USGI magazines is dramatically improved. But again, don't think that it is made in any "Über-plastik".
Besides, I also took a look at his odd cartridges collection: 4'6x30, 5'7x28, and even a Fiocchi AUPO (imagine a 9x19mm with snub-nose cartridge, all together in one single piece of, I have to say, very lighter metal in comparaison of any other bullet I have seen; then turn it to take a look at its bottom, and you'll see it hollow with a round piece of rose paper inside; I have my doubts that the cartridge design would have ever resisted to any harsh condition).
I get on an airplane to Taiwan and I come back and the magpul debate has hijacked my f*cking thread!
Lemme give the general scenario in simpler, less technobabble stuff.
There's no big 'save the world' scenario here. Small group, going into a dangerous area to bring back valuable stuff. Like the ancient dungeon-crawl to fight an evil dragon for his stash of gold, only with much cooler toys.
Bad guys: Rival groups with the same idea. Their equipment ranges from makarovs and TOZ shotguns to FN F2000s and other high tech stuff.
Monsters, mutants, and stuff that live in the area. They just exist, they're not an evil army that's bent on wiping out humanity. But, they don't fear humans like some animals in the wild have learned to do. If they're hungry, they might decide to eat you, if they're territorial, they might decide to attack you. There's also some kind of psychic monster that can control groups of zombies (depending on them, they might retain enough motor skills to use weapons if they were former military or stalkers).
Ukrainian (and possibly Russian Federation) military patrols. No heavy armor, since they won't allow any vehicles that have been in the zone to come back out, and they aren't going to just toss their tanks away for just this purpose. Ancient BTRs and BRDMs at the heaviest.
For the purpose of the whole commando thing, we can ignore the anomalies (they're just a 'mood setter'). So forget the gravity altering stuff. Just the bad-guys.
Also... saving the world from this thing is like saving the world from global warming. We know jack shit about it, but at least with the zone we KNOW we know jack shit about it instead of pretending we understand it. And scientists are gonna pay us big bucks to break the law, fight off Ukrainian military and state border guard, deal with weapons smugglers for supply, and risk our necks for some items they can study.
Good-guy mode off, mercenary mode on. :stirpot:
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