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Ignorance is Strength

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I was dismayed recently by an amateur reviewer who, besides holding forth on my shortcomings as a writer and my more repellent flaws as a human being, accused me of not knowing how a Lawgiver works.
In fairness to the pipsqueak, I genuinely don’t know how a Mk 1 Lawgiver works. Does anyone? If pressed, I’d say, ‘Through futuristic technology,’ and leave it at that.
Grud knows we’ve all seen the thing being used often enough, but the ballistic nitty-gritty remains unclear.
For instance, McMahon’s lawgiver looks nothing like Ron Smith’s. We’ve seen it being reloaded (McMahon). We’ve seen the ammunition up close (Ezquerra). Garth Ennis even gave it a calibre, if I remember rightly.
But has anyone gone to the trouble of attempting to reconcile all this accumulation of evidence? Like, how are you supposed to get all those different types of ammunition into one little box magazine?

Anyway, I’m new to this forum so I don’t know if there’s been a school of Dreddverse canon lawyers beavering away on suchlike stuff these past years.
Is there a thread? ‘How Mega-City Works (or doesn’t)?’

Funt Solo:
There have been a couple of diagrams, which were then used as the basis for the rules in the JD RPG, back in the day. But that's all Mark I, and canon usually means "what works best for the plot in this moment".

This iconic spread (from an early 80s annual?) was probably the best explanation of how the Mark I worked...though i think every artist since has ignored that goofy looking heat seeker bolt on.

regarding 'How Mega City Works', the most fun thread (IMHO) recently was this one, Is There a Middle Class in MC1?

Let's be honest here: the Lawgiver has never made much sense, having been developed piecemeal over the first year or so of the strip's very episodic, throw-stuff-at-the-wall-and-see-what-sticks, developmental period. Most of that development consisted of "What will seem cool to a ten-year-old this week?"

The ricochet round is largely ignored these days (I suspect mainly because the level of contrivance required to introduce a scenario where it would actually be useful), the heat-seeker (if it's ever referred to at all) is usually only mentioned in a reference to why it can't be used.

Armour piercing makes very little sense as a round to be routinely deployed in an urban environment by law enforcement, since the potential for unintended fatalities is obvious.

I'm not sure anyone's ever adequately explained the difference between Hi-Ex and Grenade — has Dredd ever used a grenade round in a story?

I wrote a blog post with how I thought the gun might work. And as a working pro I can confidentially say: it doesn’t matter.


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