|Weapon type||Semi-automatic Pistol|
|Manufacturer||Israel Military Industies (1982-1996) |
Saco Defense (1996–2000)
Israel Military Industries (2000–2005)
Magnum Research and Israel Weapon Industries (2005–current)
|Appearances||Metal Gear Solid|
Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots
Metal Gear Acid
Metal Gear Acid 2
|Weight||1,998.6 g (4.4 lb)|
|Length||6 in (152.4 mm)-10 in (254.0 mm) or 14.75 in (374.7 mm) (10in barrel)|
|Barrel length||6 in (152.4 mm)-10 in (254.0 mm)|
|Cartridge||.357 Magnum |
|Action||Direct impingement |
|Feed system||9 round mag (.357) |
8 round mag (.41 and .44)
The Desert Eagle is a powerful semi-automatic pistol, able to fire the .50 Action Express. These rounds have 3 times the initial energy of 45 caliber rounds, and the gun's 26cm length and 2kg weight (almost double that of most military handguns) lead to it often being described as more "hand cannon" than pistol. It utilizes a gas operating system similar to that found in many assault rifles, unlike most semi-auto pistols which use the force of recoil to cycle. The standard barrel is 6 inches, but a 10 inch barrel variation also exists. Holding 7 rounds, it has extremely strong recoil, and is rather difficult to use effectively.
A variation on the Desert Eagle with an extended 10 inch barrel length gives it a theoretical range of up to 100 yards; very accurate for a handgun, though this is tempered somewhat by the balance issues the weapon incurs. The longer barrel slightly increases muzzle velocity and weight. It can also be equipped with a scope enabling the gun to be used over longer ranges. All other specs are identical to the 6 inch model. The 10 inch variation also carries over the strong recoil of its smaller brother (although slightly less due to the added weight on the end of the gun).
It should be noted that the Desert Eagle is often seen as a "Hollywood hero" gun. The actual weapon has a gigantic muzzle flash and sound only slightly less than that of a flash grenade, making it a poor choice for practical home defense. The gas-operation is also not a popular feature with users because dirt can easily enter and jam the weapon, the extreme operating pressure of the overpowered .50AE cartridge has been known to break several components of the weapon during normal operation, and the heavy weight of the Desert Eagle compared to its ammunition capacity makes it impractical as a battlefield sidearm. The weapon is almost unusable outside target practice and showing off, and is often the target of mockery by serious shooters. Solid Snake notes its impracticality in the hands of a girl like Meryl Silverburgh, and offers to trade weapons out of concern.
The preferred weapon of Meryl, she carries both the above variants in Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots, and the long-barreled version can be unlocked and used by Old Snake. The long-barreled version features a bizarre glitch, however, in that rather than reloading it with a new magazine as normal, Snake holds an entire second gun in his other hand and places it into the first one.
The Desert Eagle is a secondary weapon in Metal Gear Online, and is available for 3000 Drebin Points when enabled. Unlike with most of the available weapons, characters using the Desert Eagle are unable to keep their aim straight, due to the weight of the gun. It is an extremely powerful weapon with long effective range.
Players using Meryl as a unique character are able to purchase the long-barreled variant as a primary weapon for 1000 Drebin Points. By selecting both variants of the Desert Eagle (for 4000 DP), players using Meryl are able to keep continuous fire by simply emptying their current magazine, as Meryl will automatically switch and reload the two guns.