When you need to hit long-range targets with surgical precision, it’s time to deploy your Recon marksman and his scoped M1903. The technology may be old, but this fine-tuned weapon, like a vintage guitar, can really rock hard in the hands of a virtuoso.
Prized for its balance and precision, the M1903 saw service throughout the 20th century, up to the Vietnam War. Copied after a German design, it is a 5-round magazine fed, bolt-action rifle. This means that the firing mechanism must be cycled manually with each shot. By operating the handle, the bolt is unlocked, the breech is opened, the spent cartridge case is withdrawn and ejected, the firing pin is cocked and a new round is placed into the breech and the bolt closed.
Because it’s not easy to track fast-moving targets while looking through a scope, the M1903 is pretty much useless at close range. It’s not much better at medium range, where its slow rate of fire will your give opponent time to duck behind cover — or worse, move in for the kill — should your first bullet miss. Its loud detonation will also advertise your whereabouts, so putting, say, a river between you and your target can be a very smart idea. However at long and far range the tables are turned: the scope gives you a tremendous advantage, allowing you to score headshots like lightning from a clear blue sky and stir panic through enemy positions. Or you can eliminate the tank driver who sticks his head out of his vehicle for a breather. It really pisses them off, too.
When fired from prone position, the M1903 can hit something that looks like a tiny little dot in the distance. Just remember to control your breathing…
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