The PSG1 (German: Präzisionsschützengewehr 1, "precision-shooter rifle") is a semi-automatic sniper rifle designed by the German company Heckler & Koch.
It is chambered for the venerable 7.62x51mm NATO cartridge, feeding from either 5- or 20-round box magazines. While it is an effective weapon, the PSG1 sees limited use due to its incredible cost. (A military-affordable MSG-90, based around the PSG1's derivative G-3 combat rifle, was later released and currently sees a lot more use in the field). Only the wealthiest, best-equipped law enforcement agencies can afford them, such as the GSG-9, Germany's most recent counter-terrorist group. It is also not used by any military in the world; one of the rifle's biggest flaws is how far the spent casing flies after being ejected. While this is not a concern for police sharpshooters, this could give a military sniper's position away. It is rumored that it was developed in response to the Munich Massacre in the 1972 Summer Olympics. Initially, the rifle was equipped with a Hendsoldt 6x42 scope (fixed magnification of 6x power), but as of 2006, the rifle is now equipped with a Schmidt & Bender 3-12x50 PM II scope. A further redesign regarding the relocation of the cocking handle has earned the rifle a new designation - the PSG1A1.
Use by FOXHOUND
The PSG1 was the weapon of choice for FOXHOUND's sharpshooter, Sniper Wolf. During the Shadow Moses Incident in 2005, Solid Snake was forced to acquire one of his own in order to defeat Wolf at the communications towers and surrounding snowfield, on Shadow Moses Island.
Raiden operated a PSG1 rifle on board the Big Shell offshore plant in the Big Shell Incident in 2009. He used it to destroy several control units linked to Semtex explosives that had been planted on the Shell 1-2 Connecting Bridge. Raiden later gave Emma Emmerich sniper cover against Gurlukovich Mercenaries and Cypher UAVs, while she crossed the Strut L Oil Fence, with Snake also providing support fire with a similar weapon.
Behind the scenes
The PSG1 wasn't the only West Germany-developed sniper rifle that ended up selling in limited quantities and halting production due to expensive costs or the last one. Another sniper rifle system developed in West Germany, the Walther WA 2000, ended up sharing a similar fate during the late 1980s.
Metal Gear Solid (The Twin Snakes)
The PSG1 can be found in the Armory, in the second floor basement of the Tank Hangar, in Metal Gear Solid. It is mandatory that the player procure the rifle in order the defeat the boss character Sniper Wolf at the Underground Passageway. The player should take care while aiming the PSG1, as the character's hands tend to shake and Diazepam is recommended if important shots are likely to be missed.
The 2004 remake The Twin Snakes also includes the PSG1-T tranquilizer rifle, first introduced in Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty (see below). It is found on the first floor basement of the Nuclear Warhead Storage Building. Aside from being implemented to allow for a no-kill run, the PSG1-T's location significantly reduces the travel distance and time required to obtain a sniper rifle for defeating Wolf.
Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty
The PSG1 is required at the Shell 1-2 connecting bridge, during the Plant Chapter of Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty, in order to destroy a sensor on an airborne Cipher UAV. It can be found on the top floor of the Strut F warehouse. Like the previous game, the trembling of the character's hands can be reduced by using Pentazemin.
The PSG1-T is a modified version of the PSG1 rifle, firing tranquilizer rounds and equipped with a suppressor, which can also be found in Strut F. Unlike the PSG1, it only holds 5 rounds per magazine. In reality, it is impossible to screw a silencer on the PSG1 due to the use of free-float chamber, although a special suppressor may have been developed by the then-future setting of the game. Because it uses a tranquilizer round, however, it probably doesn't require the same high-caliber cartridge - it more likely uses a projectile similar to that of the M9 handgun. In gameplay terms, it is similar to the M9's tranquilizer, with the exception that the tranquilizer rounds used by the PSG1-T will put the enemy to sleep much faster, as well as having a longer effective range and faster muzzle velocity.
The PSG1, or rather, its card made an appearance in both main entries of the non-canonical Metal Gear Ac!d franchise. Both instances were also important to the plot, to clear away Cyphers, both of the regular and gun varieties at a bridge that led to the final location in the game.
- Metal Gear Solid (PSG1)
- Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes (PSG1, PSG1-T)
- Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty (PSG1, PSG1-T)
- Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots (PSG1; flashback only)
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